Monday, December 31, 2012

EGGS!!!!

This morning we had a fun surprise as Joshua came running into the house after letting the chickens out and feeding them!! 3 EGGS!! WhoooHooo!!!
At lunchtime, there was one more. At dinner time there was another. So tonight for supper, we tried the eggs. Yep, they taste the same :)
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Sunday, December 30, 2012

My Exercise Partner, My Motivater!

I am very unmotivated when it comes to any kind of exercise!! I mean, who really is?? In the past, I've always done well exercising with a friend, someone not only to workout with but to also to exercise our jaws with :)
I've tried Wii fit, Julian Michaels, and Zumba on my own and well, they are very good dust collectors. I've taken Hunter for walks, but where we were always living, he had to be put on a leash, which really did turn into a workout with him pulling and yanking your arm out of socket. By the time I got back home I would be frustrated and say, "Never again!" Even with the choke collar on him, he would still pull...guess we wanted to go on a run and not a walk.
Since moving down with Jason's parents, I've seen my need to exercise...blah! His parents have 96 acres of land, a very long driveway (about a mile), long road to the lake, and many walking trails. Basically room to run, walk, or hike. In all the other places we've lived, Hunter was put outside on a leash, not here, he has FREEDOM!! Well, for a while he did until he brought back a deer leg from one of the carcasses we dumped after butchering it up. Now Hunter has to wear his shock collar because he hasn't been listening and has been wandering too far enjoying his freedom a little too much. However, he is in the best shape he has ever been!!
Anyhoo, I've been walking for months now and every time I go, I take the dog and whatever else dog decides to follow me :)
Every morning it's the same. Hunter whines, I let him out to go to the bathroom, let him back in, I try and go back to sleep, he whines spastically, he nudges me, he paces, he yips, until FINALLY I'm like, "Ok ok OK, I'm getting up! Let's go for our walk!" Once I say walk, oh my goodness! Watch out, he is running around the house like a psycho! I can't get ready fast enough! He yips louder, paces faster, whines louder! I open the door and ZOOM out the door he goes! He LOVES our walks :)
This morning I tried to get him to sit so I could take his picture, but he's so spastic, you wouldn't be able to tell in these pictures, but he was going crazy having to be made to sit!
He knows my routes :) He's always several feet ahead of me ready to make the turn I usually go.
He's my exercising partner and a good motivater :)
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Saturday, December 29, 2012

Birthday Boy!!

Our baby boy turned 6 yesterday!! Jacob was so excited to turn six because it meant that he was old enough to go hunting! You have to be 6 or older to go on the youth hunt. The youth hunt started on the 26th of December and was going until the 28th, the day of his birthday. There is another youth hunt next weekend too :)
Jacob woke up excited to open his present. More Legos! He loves the Legos he has gotten for Christmas, with his birthday money, and now birthday because they are HIS and he doesn't have to ask to play with the older boys' Legos :)
While he was building his set with the boys and Jessica, he says, "That's right! I get to go hunting today!"
After lunch Jason took Jacob hunting. It was cold and drizzly, but they still went. Jason said as soon as they got there, ten minutes later Jacob fell fast asleep for about an hour, then woke up and whispered, "I think we better leave". So that was his afternoon of hunting :)
For supper he chose sloppy joe's and for his birthday cake he wanted dirt cake. We took the cake over to the house so Bill and Doris could join us. After cake, we all went back over to the trailer and played games that Jacob picked out for us to play.
He had a fun day...can't believe he's 6! :)
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Another Day in Branson

For Christmas we gave Jesse money and a couple gifts. He's getting very difficult to shop for these days. We were trying to encourage him to think of a hobby to start, to give him something new to strike his interest. We at first looked up things on the internet, but idea after idea nothing was "catching" his eye. We decided to look for a hobby shop and we found one to try out in Hollister, near Branson. So Thursday we headed out in search of a hobby :) The hobby shop we stopped at in Hollister was exactly what we were looking for. Trains, planes, ships, cars, and so much more!! After about an hour of being there, Jesse decided to save up for a remote control airplane. He could buy the plane now, but wouldn't be able to fly it. They get ya by having you buy all the other parts in which it makes it fly. In the end, it will cost around $600!! Crazy!! So I guess he's saving for now.
We then stopped at Branson Landing, the outdoor strip mall....brrr! We were given Christmas money for the family and decided to get a couple family games....we LOVE playing games!! Everything was half off...perfect! We had gotten Telestrations and Dixit. We were looking to see if they still had Ticket to Ride, but they were out. Telestrations is along the line of the telephone game and Dixit it similar to Apples to Apples but with just picture cards...both very fun games! I think the kids like Telestrations the best.
We then stopped at Walmart because Jessica wanted to spend birthday money and Jacob's birthday was the next day so Doris gave him birthday money to take along to spend. Jessica bought paints, paint brushes, painting paper, little clay figurines to paint, and a bracelet making kit. Jacob bought Legos. They were on sale...yes! The best deal :)
It was a chilly day, but we had gotten a few things accomplished. Jessica and Jacob spent their birthday money, and Jesse found a hobby to save up for :)
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Friday, December 28, 2012

Spotless and Pure

The other day, Jason's mom had listened to a Christian program on tv talking about the "Christmas Story". She figured that it would be the same ol' story you hear year after year, so she half listened. As the preacher began preaching, her interest began to change as she listened. He spoke on things that she has never gave any thought of.
Bethlehem. Did you know that there were two Bethlehems? So how did the Shepherds know which one to go to? Sacrifices of a spotless, pure lamb were made to take the sins of man away. It was a symbol that was made by God. These lambs were born in a stable or a tower and were immediately wrapped in blankets to keep clean before their sacrifice. One of these towers or stables was in Bethlehem, the same Bethlehem where Jesus was born.
Think about it. Jesus, the Lamb, born in a stable, spotless and pure, wrapped in a blanket, and would be sacrificed for our sins.

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Gloria!

Luke 2:13 And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying:

14 "Glory to God in the highest,
And on earth peace, goodwill toward men!"

http://m.youtube.com/watch?gl=US&client=mv-rim&hl=en&v=FDYi-sTTIbk

Christmas has come and gone. I hope that you all had a wonderful Christmas as you celebrated the birth of our Savior, Jesus. How He humbled Himself to be born of a virgin so He could take the burden of our sins.
Every year, we begin our morning by reading from Matthew 1 and Luke 1 and 2. We read of Jesus' descendants, of Zacharias and Elizabeth's birth announcement of John, of Mary's announcement of Jesus, Mary's visit to Elizabeth, John's birth, Jesus' birth, the shepherds, the wisemen, Simeon, and Anna. It takes a little while to read, but it is very important to teach, learn, and understand the true meaning of Christmas and the beginning of it all.
Once the reading is all done, Jason asks the kids questions about the story reading to make sure they were all paying attention :)
Yes, presents can be an exciting time, but we must not forget about our Savior and why He came to be born of
a virgin.

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Monday, December 17, 2012

Meteor Shower

Who was able to watch the meteor shower last Thursday night??? We did!! It was my parents last night here, and Doris mentioned to us that she saw on the news about a meteor shower for Thursday night. After we played some games that night, we all drove out to the post office to watch the meteor shower because it was more open and darker. At the house, there are two lights on posts that sort of light up the area making it hard to have seen the meteor shower.
When we first got there and got out of the car, we looked up and waited...nothing. Finally, we saw the falling stars, sometimes one right after another or there would be a short lull before we saw the next one. We saw bright ones and dull ones, but what a sight! It was such a clear, perfect night!!
The kids lasted for a little bit before wanting to warm back up in the car :) I guess the peak of the meteor shower was around midnight, but we didn't stay out that long.
Glad we went to go see it!
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Christmas Pictures







Saturday, December 15, 2012

Porridge in a Pear Tree

Yes, Jessica has been singing and singing The 12 Days of Christmas and I keep correcting her that it's partridge in a pear tree, not porridge :)
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Christmas Shopping, Wrapping, and Caroling

Yesterday after my parents left to head back to Wisconsin, Jason and I had gone into town to not only pick up a new capacitor for the well, but to also do Christmas shopping.
We realize that as the kids get older, it is getting harder to "know" what to get each kid. Jacob and Jessica were still pretty easy and their gifts were done quickly. Joshua is one who sees something and THAT'S what he wants the MOST!! Problem is, his #1 item changes DAILY!! It took a little longer for him, but we finally decided on a gift. Jesse. Usually EVERY year, Jesse knows exactly what he wants and it makes things easy. Not this year. The things that he did finally decide on wasn't something that we really wanted to get him. We would have loved to have a hobby store nearby to get him a model of some sort or a build your own robot or something like that for him, but no hobby store. It was frustrating deciding "what" to get him. In the end, we had gotten a few of the things he suggested and the rest of the money we put in a card for him. Whew! Done!
We got home, Jason put in the new capacitor, and I covered the presents with a blanket until dark.
We watched a movie, ate supper, and played Settlers with the kids. When it was time for bed, Jason brought in all the gifts to our bedroom for me to wrap. Of course the kids were all excited as I began wrapping. Jessica came to the door and asked if she could help wrap! Ha! Then of course, Jacob thought he would give it a try and ask :) As I was wrapping, I heard Jason trying to teach the kids the 12 days of Christmas song. Every now and then he'd holler, for me to hear behind closed doors, "What is the 9th day?" and I'd holler back, "9 ladies dancing!" :) After a few of those, he finally got the whole song. Once he sang it through, he had all the kids sing with him...pretty funny :) Then they started sing other Christmas songs and Jason ended up having each kid pick a song that they had to sing solo. Of course, Jessica picked the 12 Days of Christmas and the other three picked Jingle Bells. It was cute :)
As soon as I finished wrapping gifts, Jason helped me put them under the tree. It was funny as each kid tried guessing what their gift was :)
Because it's the weekend, the kids all slept out in the living room and watched a movie. :)
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A Perfect Day for a Ride Around

When my parents first arrived, the temperatures were dropping and cool. Sunday was rainy, cold, and windy. Monday and Tuesday were cold. Wednesday was warmer but not as nice as Thursday. Sunday, while the rain had stopped, we piled all up in our car and drove my parents down to the lake for them to see. On the way down, we pointed out our deer blinds :) Once we had gotten down close enough to the lake, we parked, got out, and walked the rest of the way down. It was chilly, but my parents thought the view was gorgeous. My mom still took a few pictures :)
Thursday was the nicest day of low 60's. I decided to take my parents across the ferry in Peel and drive around a bit before crossing back over. My mom is very nervous when it comes to things like that so of course my kids had to make teasing comments about the ferry sinking....kids!! ;) One of the things my mom wanted to do was to stand by the "Welcome to Arkansas" sign. When we were on the other side of the lake we end up crossing into Missouri. You saw the sign for Missouri as you entered their state, but we didn't see Arkansas'. As we turned around and drove back to the ferry, we spotted the Arkansas sign, but it was laying mostly flat on the ground...my mom still wanted a picture. We stopped, her and I got out, she sat down by the sign, and I took the picture! Ha!
Once we got back home, we had lunch. After lunch, Jason and I took my parents for a ride around the property with the mule and four-wheeler. My dad and mom took the mule with Jesse and I riding in the back so that I could explain what was what as we followed Jason on the four-wheeler. Joshua, Jessica, and Jacob rode along with Jason. We drove around showing them the basic property line, showing them the piece of property in which we would like to someday build on, showed them the old road that takes you down to the lake, and showed them Jason's brother's place and the house his brother is in the process of building.
After we got back to the house, we walked around the property up by the house, trailer, and barn. I showed my mom the barn and the kids showed my parents the chickens.
It was just a perfect day to be out. I was thankful for a nice day a day before my parents had to leave. :)
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Water Well Issues

Wednesday night after playing games until around 10:30 with my parents, Jason and I were getting ready for bed. I started up a load of wash before going to bed. A few minutes later, Jason used the sink and hardly any water was coming out of the sink. I checked the washer and saw that the water was just trickling out. Something wasn't right. Jason went outside and walked around the trailer and the barn to see if maybe a pipe broke and water was spewing out...nothing. There was no water in the barn. I went over to the house. No water in the house.
So Jason and I both went over to the well to lift off the roof/cover which was extremely heavy. Jason jumped down into the space and checked all the electrical. He couldn't hear the pump working so we feared the worst...a broken pump. To replace the pump, you would have to pull over 300 feet of pipe from the ground just to get to the pump and if you make just one mistake, a whole new well would need to be put in. That would be extremely expensive.
Jason went into the house, woke up his mom, and told her the news.
The next morning, Jason and I gathered as many buckets, coolers, and jugs as we could to go fill them up with water for flushing. Thankfully his brother Jon has a well and water. Jason took the car as I took the mule on down to his brother's place. After filling all the containers with water, we went back to the house and placed different containers by the front door, basement door for my parents, and by our trailer.
Doris made a phone call with the company who replaced the pump a year ago and was told to check the reset button. Reset button?? What?? Sure enough, there was a reset button under the electrical box! Apparently, when the people who had put in the new box, they installed it upside down leaving the reset button unexposed. Jason had no idea the button was there and didn't even see it. He ran over to the well and found the button, pushed it, and ,YAY, the pump started working!!!
This morning around 7:30, Jesse called us from the house to tell us that the water wasn't working again. Sure enough, it went out again! Jason and I went outside, he lifted the heavy roof as I quickly reached down in to find the reset button. Got it! Pump working again, but what was causing the button to pop?
After my parents left this morning to head back home, Jason got the tractor, took the roof off, and went inside the well area again to thoroughly check things over now that it was daylight unlike last time. He found the problem. One of the capacitor's prongs were loose and there was black burn markings.
Jason and I were planning on doing a little Christmas shopping today, so we picked up a new capacitor.
As soon as we got home, he put in the new capacitor. So far everything is working. For now, we'll be keeping the containers of water nearby in case it ended up to be something else. Hopefully not.
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Thursday, December 13, 2012

A Day in Branson and a Trip to Flippin

My parents are here this week and we have been enjoying our time with them. Jason and I were trying to think of things to do with my parents.
Sunday it rained and Monday was very cold.
Tuesday, Jessica had an eye appointment in Harrison and my mom needed to pick up the boys' Christmas gifts that she had pre-ordered and had shipped to the Walmart near us. So we all decided to go and make a day of it. After Jessica's eye appointment and picking up the boys' gift, we all drove out to Branson. Just one of those things for my parents to say, "We've been to Branson" :)
I decided to take them to Branson's Landing where Doris had taken me when we were searching for shoes. It's like an outdoor mall, pretty neat. The weather was a little cool, but the sun made it just right. We enjoyed walking down the strip and stopping in a few stores to either browse or buy a few little things here and there. At the end of the strip was a smaller version of Bass Pro Shop, so we stopped on in for a bit. We decided to skip going to Springfield to the bigger one.
My parents treated us all out to lunch at Subway which was a real treat for us!
After we finished, we headed back home so that my mom could wrap the presents so they could then be opened a few minutes later :) We had the kids open presents from my parents and Jason and I even got a few :)
Later that night we played some games.
The next morning, I had to go in to Yellville to return a few movies and a book to the library and of course stop at Walmart in Flippin to get some ink for the printer and do a little Christmas shopping. My mom wanted to go along in hopes of getting a picture of the Flippin Police ;) At Walmart, my mom found a shirt that had a picture of flip flops on the front and the town's name "Flippin" and on the back it said, "I vacationed in the Ozarks and all I got was this flippin shirt"...ha ha ha!!
My mom was bummed not to have gotten a picture of the Flippin Police :). So that was our little trips out and about for the week :)
I'll blog more later about the rest of the week.
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Monday, December 10, 2012

Rummikub

We had played Rummikub once when we were at Mike and Karma's and thought it was a pretty fun game.
My parents brought down their game and Joshua, Jessica, and Jacob have picked up quickly on how to play.
Jacob wants to play all the time now seeing that he knows how to play :)
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Mexican French Toast Rolls

The other evening, Jason and I were watching the CreateTV channel and Pati's Mexican Kitchen came on once again. She had her sister on the show this time and they made pound cake and some French toast rolls.
Jason had the try them the next night, so he and two of the kids made some...they were pretty good :)
This morning I had made some for everyone else to try...yum!
http://patismexicantable.com/2012/10/mexican-french-toast-rolls.html
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Apple Wood

I think we may have found the source to my tingling, swelling, burning lips/mouth.
A few weeks ago, I was telling my sister-in-law about my situation and thinking it was due to the venison that we just made. She was telling me that she had the same reaction when she ate food smoked in apple wood. I never mentioned what we smoked our venison in, but most of it was smoked with hickory wood chips and all of the summer sausage was smoked in apple wood and I was eating a lot of the summer sausage over Thanksgiving!
For the last few weeks, we've been trying to see if that was the problem, but my mouth wasn't healed yet so it was hard to see if that was the problem until yesterday.
My mouth finally was healed and I already forgot about the venison. My parents came down on Saturday for the week. So yesterday with lunch, I cut up some summer sausage for them to try with crackers. A half hour later, my mouth, tongue, and lips were tingly and my lips were swelling! It must be it!
Last week I read up on allergy reactions to apples and it mentioned all the reactions that I was experiencing. Crazy!
Or maybe I am just a hypercondriact :)
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Sunday, December 9, 2012

Cake Pop Snowmen

The other day, I had gone grocery shopping at Aldi. I had seen that they were selling cake pop kits. I thought it would be a fun cooking/crafty thing to do with the kids.
Let's just say that this will be the first and last time I make them!! It turned out to be a longer project than expected, but in the end, the kids had fun making and decorating them...and they tasted pretty good :)

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Making Christmas Cards

Yesterday, my parents had came down to visit us for a week. Its so nice to see them again!
Today was a rainy day, so my mom, Jessica, Joshua, Jacob, and I had made Christmas cards...ok, just one, but we're hoping to make more this week :)

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Friday, December 7, 2012

Christmas Caroling

Today the kids and I had an opportunity to sing Christmas carols, with the homeschool group that we are apart of, at a nursing home in Yellville.
The kids enjoyed going from the dining hall to hallways singing familiar Christmas songs. During our first stop, the dining room, we sang a few songs. One little boy from our group, only seven years old, had pulled out his guitar to play AND sing two carols. Oh my goodness!! Such talent!! I see him as a future worship leader and beyond! Not only did he play well, he had a good voice as well. :)
The only thing I wish we had done was to have spent more time with the men and ladies. They really enjoyed us coming and hearing us all sing. It kind of brought back fond memories of working at Shepherds. My heart was being pulled today...sure miss working with the residents.
I was thankful for the opportunity to be a blessing to others today and to teach my kids the importance of giving of themselves to minister to others.
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Friday, November 30, 2012

Call Me a Hypocondriact!!

For the last week and a half, I have been having soreness in my mouth. The inside of my lips feel like they are extremely chapped so they feel like they are burning. They feel dry and swollen...I couldn't even whistle!! My tongue is sore. The roof of my mouth is sore. It hasn't been fun eating.
Last night, I finally Googled my symptoms and I think this is what I might have...Jason calls me a hypocondriact, BUT I have EVERY symptom!!

Burning Mouth Syndrome


What is burning mouth syndrome?

Burning mouth syndrome (BMS) is a relatively common problem. Patients who have this condition complain of abnormal sensations of the lining of the mouth. Many patients say that it feels like their mouth has been scalded, and that is why this condition is called burning mouth syndrome. Although we don't know exactly what causes BMS, most of the evidence points to a problem with the nerves that send information about our senses to the brain. These nerves are simply sending incorrect messages to the brain. Different sets of nerves send information about pain, taste, and texture, and any combination of these nerves can be affected for a particular patient.

     Pain. A raw, irritated or burned sensation often develops in the front part of the mouth, usually affecting the inner surfaces of the lips, the roof of the mouth, and the sides and tip of the tongue. In some patients, only the tongue will be affected; however, any combination of these sites may be present. Sometimes the burned sensation will be in other areas of the mouth too, such as the throat, the gums, or the cheeks.

     Taste. If the nerves that carry information about taste are affected, patients may have a decreased ability to taste their food, or they may develop what are known as "taste phantoms". The person may have a bitter, metallic, salty, sweet or sour taste in the mouth, even though there are no foods or beverages in the mouth to give that taste. It's just that the nerves seem to be telling the brain that a bitter or metallic substance is in the mouth, when in fact, there isn't.

     Texture. Other patients may have unpleasant textures in their mouth. For example, they may feel that their mouths are too dry or too wet. They may feel that the lining of the mouth feels slimy or sticky. Some patients have described their mouths as feeling like cotton or Velcro. Sometimes it feels that the lips or tongue are swollen. In all cases, however, the lining of the mouth appears normal when we examine it carefully.

The symptoms of BMS often tend to wax and wane. Patients may describe their sensations as being less obvious in the morning when they first get up, and becoming worse as the day goes on. Usually the irritation is not so bad that it causes them to lose sleep. Some patients will say that the problem will be bad for a few weeks, then gradually fade, only to come back again.

Who gets burning mouth?

Most patients who see doctors for BMS are post-menopausal women, but men can get this problem too. We don't know whether this is because more women have the condition, or just that women are more likely to go to a doctor for evaluation. BMS is a relatively common problem that is seen all over the world. For example, in Holland, patients with BMS have formed a support group. Chat groups have also been organized on the Web. This condition affects people of all races and all backgrounds.

What causes burning mouth?

Nobody knows for sure. There are a few uncommon diseases that could be tested for in some patients, such as anemia, diabetes and oral yeast infections. For most patients with BMS, however, those tests turn out to be normal. We know that burning mouth is not related to anything serious, such as cancer or AIDS. Furthermore it is not contagious - it can't be passed from one person to another.

How do doctors diagnose burning mouth syndrome?

BMS is diagnosed by listening carefully to the patient's description of their symptoms and doing a careful examination of the mouth. Sometimes it may be helpful to do blood tests and fungal culture to make certain that one of the other problems mentioned previously is not present. If those tests are all negative, and if the lining of the mouth appears normal, then we can make a diagnosis of BMS.

How is burning mouth syndrome treated?

Unfortunately, no one has developed a medically proven treatment for BMS. The main problem is that we don't know exactly what causes BMS, therefore it is difficult to develop a treatment for the problem. A variety of medications, including antidepressants, anti-seizure drugs, female hormone replacement therapy and vitamin therapy, have been tried; however, such treatments either have no effect or their effect is no different than what we would expect to see with placebo (sugar pill) treatment.

How long will the burning sensation last?

Again, we cannot say for sure. We know that for about half of affected patients, the condition will resolve after a period of time, but no one can predict how long that will be for a particular individual. For the most part, this problem is a nuisance, and it can be a frustrating situation for both patients and doctors.
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Monday, November 26, 2012

Thanksgiving Week

What a busy, but yet relaxing week! Last Monday, we ended up just working on catching up with school work from the week before. Tuesday, we took the day off of school because it was Jessica's birthday. Wednesday was a day of making pies and cleaning the house and trailer. I had made 7 pies! Yes, you read right...7!! 5 chocolate and 2 pumpkin. At first I was about to "throw in the towel" because three of my crusts ended up in the garbage. I had two little helpers and we were doubling the pie crust recipe. With trying to help the kids make the crusts, I was distracted and wasn't adding the correct amount of ingredients. Finally Jessica says to me, "I'm done. Let me know when you're ready to make the pudding, I'll help with that." Once the kids left, I finally was getting the crust right :) In between pie making, I was trying to help Doris clean the basement for when Mike and Karma and the kids came that night.
Thursday was such a nice day. It helped so much that we had divided up who was making what for Thanksgiving and things had gone smoothly.
That afternoon, all the kids had wanted me to give them a ride in Doris' mule. The love it when Aunt Jenny takes them. Not sure why. Maybe it's because I drive super fast ;) We had just finished going on a little bit of a slower ride because Jesse doesn't like it when I go fast. So we had dropped him off and I had taken the rest to go for a "fast" ride. We just finished zooming to the end of the driveway when all of a sudden the mule died!! We ran out of gas!! I should have known better seeing that it had been a while since it was filled up. It was getting close to dark so we all tried to hurry back, get gas, walk back, and drive back before it had gotten too dark. We made it and had gotten the mule back. Jason filled it up the next day :)
Friday, Doris had plans of setting up the Christmas tree. So Karma and I had pulled it out, separated the tree branches by color code, and gave the job to the older kids in which they were super excited to do!
Jason, Mike, and Jon had cut down Bill and Doris' pine tree out front to give a better view of the lake. Jon and Laurie had taken the branches back to their shop, that's down the driveway, and Laurie made beautiful wreaths for everyone. She added pine cones from in the woods and red berries from off the trees down by the lake. She did a beautiful job!!
Jason and Mike had also cut down another tree to open up the view to the lake from the other side of the house.
The tree was finished and now all the kids had helped decorate the tree. They did an excellent job decorating! Once the tree was finished, some of the kids had the idea of surprising Jason and I by pulling out our Christmas stuff and decorating the trailer. They brought me over to the trailer and I was quite surprised alright. They had set up our small 4 foot artificial tree and decorated it with all our stuff for the big tree. Knowing that they were trying to be helpful and wanting to surprise us, others were hurt for not being asked to help. I was trying to be thankful, but yet also let them know that it was something that we were wanting to do as a family once everyone had left. So for now, it's still in the living room. We'll fix it later this weekend.
Saturday, Jason's mom wanted Mike and Jason to hang her wreath that Laurie had made and also to put together the outdoor manger scene that was to be placed in front of our trailer seeing that Jason had "rescued" the set from being burned!! Jason's mom was going to get rid of it and he said that we'd take it knowing that the kids would like it...and I like it too! :)
Later that afternoon, we had celebrated Jessica's birthday again, but with everyone. Jessica had wanted me to make the Heath bar cake and wanted trick candles...takes the fun out of that one ;) After cake, she opened her presents. She had gotten earrings, an earring holder, and a purse. Once we had all cleaned up the kitchen, we all had gone outside to get ready to hit the pinata! That was a lot of fun watching the kids as they tried to hit the pinata with a blindfold on as Jason or Mike would raise and lower the pinata just as the kids had swung :) All 8 kids had gotten the chance to hit the pinata and finally Carissa had broke it open! Then it was the mad dash to the candy!
After the pinata fun, a few of us had walked up to Jon and Laurie's place so that Mike and Karma could take a look at the house production and Jon had wanted us all to see his 7 point buck that he had shot the afternoon before.
Sunday was a gorgeous day!! Seeing that Mike and Karma were leaving that day, we all decided to just stay home from church and enjoy our last day together. It had gotten up into the 70's that day. Beautiful outside playing weather!
Seeing that the mule ran out of gas a few days before, the kids had asked me if I could take them again and go REAL FAST!! We went fast alright!! I was able to get it to go up to 41 mph!! The kids LOVED it!!! Still not sure why they always ask me to take them...
The last 5 days, the kids had fun playing in the sandbox, jumping on the trampoline, playing on the Wii, working on building a fort, going on mule rides, and playing other games and much more. Of course, there is always a little bickering here and there, but for the most part, they all had gotten along real well. Jason and I had fun playing games in the evening with Mike and Karma after all the kids had gone to bed.
Overall, it was a nice Thanksgiving week! :)
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Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Jessica's Birthday!!

Yesterday was Jessica's 9th Birthday!!
For months, she's been asking and wanting to get her ears pierced. It's funny, because her birthday list included: camouflage shirt, camouflage pants, camouflage hat, BB gun, bow and arrow, ear pierced. :) While we were out in Bentonville a few weeks ago, we had gone to Cabela's and had gotten her a camouflage hat as a part of her gift for her birthday.
Yesterday morning, we all had gotten up early, had breakfast, and had headed out to good ol' Walmart to get Jessica's ears pierced. For the last two weeks she kept saying how nervous and excited she was. I kept making sure she still wanted them pierced and she said, "Yes". So as we're driving to Walmart that morning, I could tell her nerves were building up. Of course it didn't help that for weeks and on the way there that Jason teased her about him just using the nail gun to save money or her ears might fall off!!
We get to Walmart and the lady behind the counter of the jewelry department looked uncertain....whaat? Great!! She was looking around for someone to assist her so that both ears could be done at the same time. Apparently whomever she was looking for was on break. So it came down to Jessica deciding whether she had wanted it done one ear at a time or both ears done at the same time. With her nerves building, we kind of forced her to give us an answer, and she said she had wanted it done "now". So Jessica had picked out her earrings, a blue topaz gem stud. So the lady had marked up her one ear and then I guess had marked up her other ear several different times because she couldn't get them even. She had finally gotten it!! She opened up the box and saw that she would get a matching necklace :)
Jessica had asked me earlier if I could hold her hand as her ears were getting pierced, so as I held her hand, I cringed inside for her!! She did great!!! Only one "ouch", but she did great!! Once the lady had put Jessica's necklace on her, she looked in the mirror to see her ears. She was beaming!! :) Of course I had to take pictures so I could text them to my family and some friends :)
Later that day after we had gotten home, Jessica had helped mend and stuff the pinata with candy for Saturday's birthday celebration for when Jason's brother and family come.
For supper, I had made Jessica's requested homemade chicken noodle soup with french bread. For dessert, she chose to have oreo malts :) When we celebrate again on Saturday, I am making a chocolate fudge, heath cake.
After having our malts, we played two family games, Pictionary and Disney's Scene It.
I think she had a fun day :)


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Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Joshua's Birthday!!

A few weeks ago, on November 6th, we celebrated Joshua's 11th birthday!! The weekend before, we had gone to Jason's brother's house. While we were there, my sister-in-law and I had taken the kids to Toys R Us to get Joshua a birthday gift. Mike and Karma had gone in on a gift with us, which was a motorized marble run set...pretty cool!! While we were there, Joshua had wanted to use some of his birthday money and ended up getting a remote control helicopter and a Wii game.
On his birthday, we took the day off of school and Jessica and I had gone into town to pick up a few odds and ends. Jessica had brought some of her money and had gotten Joshua some presents...a hotwheels car, a tooting toy, and a grenade :)
For every birthday, I let the kids pick a special birthday supper and decide what kind of cake they would like. Joshua had picked homemade pizza and a birthday party cake in which I layered the cake and had put pudding in the middle!! Yum!!
He had a fun day celebrating :)
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Thursday, November 15, 2012

Jason's Second Deer...A Buck!!

This morning we butchered up my little buck, ground the meat, and froze it.
This afternoon, Jason had gone hunting again with not very high hopes of getting anything. Yesterday, he moved the corn pile again but a little further. We've seen some nice bucks on the camera before we had moved the pile, so when we had looked at the pictures from the new pile spot, the big bucks were not there. He was kind of disappointed and wasn't in much of a hurry to get out there this afternoon.
While I was on the phone talking to my friend Christina, I heard a shot!! I knew it was Jason!! We waited what seemed forever for him to come up to the house. Finally, he came up and said he got one...an 8 point buck!!
We all piled into the mule and drove on down to the deer. After Jason had field dressed the deer, he loaded it up into the back of the mule. Then Jesse says, "He has 7 points." Sure enough, with all Jason's excitement, he miss counted :)
So of course, remarks were made about my little buck that I had gotten...haha! Jason said too bad that we had butchered up my deer already, because it would have been funny to hang them up side by side :)
So that is 3 deer now!! Jason had gotten a doe a few weeks ago, I had gotten a button buck, and now Jason had gotten a buck. Now it's up to Jessica to get one!! :)

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My Button Buck :)

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Another Doe That Got Away AND a BUCK, but Then...

Tuesday afternoon, Jason and I had gone hunting again in hopes of getting a deer. He had gone to the blind that is closer to the lake and I had gone to the other one.
After sitting for a half hour, a doe runs through without stopping. Around 4pm another doe walks up to the corn pile, but how she was standing, I could not shoot. She got away. Call it silly, but I prayed. I prayed that God would give me another opportunity to see another dee to try and shoot. At around 5:15, close to closing hours for shooting, 3 deer come walking by from my left. They ended up running past. Ugh! I was bummed! But then I looked and had seen that they had not run off far and had started walking back to the corn pile. The three of them walked back up to the corn pile! Two does were standing directly behind trees making it an impossible shot...figures! The third deer, which I thought was a buck, started wheezing and stomping its foot at my. She knew I was there but couldn't quite see me. All the while, my adrenaline is a pumpin' and I am trying to slow my breathing down and stop the shaking!! Finally, what seemed FOREVER, she turned and I was able to shoot! I was soo excited!! I thanked God for giving me another opportunity to try again :) I thought I shot a buck...goes to show how bad my sight is!! From the pictures on the camera, it was a doe. Anyways, while I was waiting for Jason to come, I started looking for blood. None. Jason came and said that sometimes if the bullet doesn't go all the way through, the bleeding won't start right away. So we walked in the direction I had thought the deer took off in. We looked and looked, had flashlights and still, nothing. Jason suggested that we look in the morning.
The next morning as we put out more corn, we looked again. No blood anywhere. I missed. With all the shaking and trembling from the excitement, I shot too far below.
I was pretty bummed :/
I had gone out again yesterday right after Jason had left for school, around 2pm. As I quietly walked down the trail, I could see that there was a nice buck down by the corn. I even had a shot, but I brought a different gun than from the day before, so I was unsure of how far it would shoot. In anguish, I watched him walk away. I had text Jason and told him and he said that the gun would have shot far enough!! Ugh!!
Call it silly, but again I prayed. I prayed that a deer could come closer to more daylight time, that I would actually shoot it this time, find the blood, and still have enough light to show the kids....He answered!!!
Around 4:45 a doe, which I thought was a doe, came walking up to the corn pile. It was turned perfectly so I could get that perfect shot. I was trying to steady my breathing, then....BOOM!!! The deer jumped a mile high and took off!! A few seconds later, "thump", it dropped!! I was PUMPED!!! I text Jason right away to tell him I had gotten one!! As soon as I had finished texting Jason, I went to look for blood. Sure enough, there it was...blood!! I was sooo excited!! My first deer EVER!! I followed the trail and realized that I didn't need to go too far, there she was!! I walked up to her cautiously and quickly saw how small she was and that she was a he...a small button buck. At first I was slightly disappointed for my lack of judgment in size, but when he came alone, I had nothing to compare it with and with all the excitement, I didn't really take the time to really look to see how big it actually was. But it was ok :) I took pictures and text them to Jason, friends, and family!! Jason was happy and excited for me. :)
I hung my vest and hat in places where we could easily find the buck when Jason came home and we had both gone down to get him.
I quickly went back up to the house to tell the kids and Jason's parents. It was still light out enough for me to take the kids down and show them. They were all excited to come and see :) Again, I thanked God for answering my specific request!!
Once Jason had gotten home, we ate supper and then went to find the buck. He said that I should field dress it....WHAAAT???? Oh my goodness!! I think my brain was numb from all the excitement because I said, "Alright"!!! We found the buck, drug him up to the road, drove down the road a bit away from the hunting area, and field dressed him...NASTY!! We then brought him back up to the house, hosed him inside and out, and hung and tagged him. My first deer!! Eeeeeekkk!!! :)
Next is to butcher him and make him into hot sticks!! Ha!

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Monday, November 12, 2012

Strong by Dillon Chase

Hopefully this link will show up. If not...someone please let me know! :)
This song is a rap song by Dillon chase. He almost had his son aborted. Neat song and lyrics.

http://m.youtube.com/watch?sns=tw&v=65QCp3gT4bs&desktop_uri=%2Fwatch%3Fv%3D65QCp3gT4bs%26sns%3Dtw
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Learning to Read!!

It's sooo exciting when you teach your children to read!!
This year, I had started Kindergarten for Jacob. We've been working on the sounds that each letter make, vowels, and blends. Last week, finally, the blends seemed to "click" with him!! Yay!! Today, we started adding another consonant to the blends to make a word. After much concentration and sounding out, he DID IT!! So proud of him!! :)
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The Doe That Got AWAY!!

Once again, I BLEW IT!!!
Yesterday afternoon, I was sitting in one of our ground deer blinds while Jason sat in the other one with Jessica. We've noticed from pictures, that the afternoons are a better chance of shooting a deer. A few weeks ago, Jason had gotten a doe in the late afternoon. Saturday afternoon, Jason and Jessica had seen two deer, but Jessica couldn't see it and get ready quick enough :(
The last few mornings while I sit in the blind, Jason has been standing up on the road a few hundred yards behind me and will use his grunt call letting me know that he is there. So I'd look behind me, see him, and go back up to the house until the afternoon.
So yesterday afternoon was rainy, windy which made it very difficult to hear anything! The squirrels made such a ruckus that many times I had thought it was a deer! So as I sat, 5 o'clock was approaching and I heard that grunt and thought it must be Jason and Jessica and thought they were tired of the rain and such. So I turned around to my left and looked towards and saw nothing. So instead of "slowly" turning a around, I just turned around and right to the right of me was a Doe staring at me!!! My adrenaline started pumping as I froze and yet knew that I JUST BLEW IT!!! After a few seconds that felt like an hour, up went the tail, she wheezed, and took off running!! Ahhh!!! I sat there for the last half hour of hunting just shaking my head and knew I wouldn't see anything else that night. Out of desperation, I had gone into my phone apps and had downloaded Deer Grunts!! Ha ha ha!!! Of course with the wind and rain, it didn't work :) I'll give it a try Thursday when we go out again. As much as I would like to get a deer for the first time, I would really like Jessica to get one! How exciting that would be for her seeing that she is the only one of the four kids who shows interest :)
Hopefully Thursday!!
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Sunday, November 11, 2012

Deactivated Facebook

"Ladies, young mothers, please look at this not as a joke, but as something very serious. Being a stay at home mom, or maybe a homeschooling mom is such an honor and a privilege, but unfortunately what is happening is the computer has become the "apple" that is always wanting a bite, if you will." And even though one can be there with their children, they are not really there because of being so indulged in blogging, facebook, exc. I implore all mom's to remember that God has given you a tremendous opportunity to pour into your children's lives.......not to have your head buried at the computer for the children to take care of themselves.....even if you are there. Just some food for thought, may we as mother's press forward to the high calling of Christ Jesus and one of those ways can be to put our family before the computer." ~Michele Urbain Herzog

This morning as I sat in our deer blind waiting for that buck or doe, I once again was facebooking from my phone when I had come across one of my friend's post.
After making a few comments of appreciation and had read what others had wrote, I felt the Holy Spirit convict me. I knew what had to be done...deactivate my account.
As much as I enjoy reading the latest news on abortion, things happening with in the pro life movement, reading my friends posts, and so on; I knew I was neglecting my kids of my attention to them. It's easy to just grab my phone for the day and facebook and read articles while half paying attention to my kids....selfish of me. When your kids make comments to you about being on the phone too much and yet you still ignore them, then ya have a problem. Yes, that is my problem.
I have acknowledged my problem and have brought it before my Savior and have repented.
Please pray for me. This will be hard, but my kids are more important to me than facebook!
Thank you for your prayers! <3
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Saturday, November 3, 2012

Blogging While shooting Squirrels :)

Yep, you read it right!! Just after Jason and Jessica had left to go hunting this afternoon, Jason called me up to have me shoot crows at the other deer blind while he and Jessica were at the other one...if I was bored ;)
At the beginning of the week, Jason and I had gone crow shooting because they were eating all of the corn for the deer!! So as he came down to go hunting this afternoon, he had seen some and asked if I wanted to shoot some...OF COURSE!!! It was fun the last time we had done it!!
So as I sit here...no crows. So I decide to blog seeing that I haven't in 3 weeks. And, OOOOOO, a squirrel!!! One down!! Back to blogging. Blogging and posting away...and OOOOO, another squirrel!!! Two down!! :)
I suppose I had better stop and head back up to the house.
Think I'll come down in the morning before church and shoot some crows. Mornings are best...that's when they are just gluttons as they eat all our corn!!!
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Youth Hunt Weekend!!

Out of the 4 kids, Jessica is the only one who is truly interested in hunting!! Today, is the first day of the two day Youth Hunt and Jessica was excited to go this morning with Jason. They were out the door by 6am! They saw nothing this morning, but headed out again this afternoon. This picture is of Jason and Jessica as they were getting ready to head out this afternoon. Hopefully, I will have a picture to post of a dead deer :)

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Chris Tomlin Concert!!!

While we were visiting Jason's brother and his family, my sister-in-law had gotten a text from a friend asking my sister-in-law, Karma, if she would be interested in having two free tickets to a Chris Tomlin concert that was in town. Um...YEEES!!!! This lady and her husband couldn't go because they were hosting a dinner party.
My niece also had wanted to go and had talked about it for awhile prior. As the evening went on, Karma finally said that she would rather if Carissa had gone than her. Karma was starting not to feel good so she asked if it was ok that I had gone with Carissa rather than the two of us go. I was bummed and yet happy to take my niece.
OH MY GOODNESS!!! What an awesome concert!! I love and have loved his music!! What a blessing!!
Carissa and I had gotten back home and Karma and the guys were at the table playing a game. Karma had asked Carissa if she liked it and had fun...of COURSE!! She then asked her is she danced and she was like, "No, BUT Aunt Jenny WAS and was raising her hands!!" HAHAHA!!! I said, "Yep, the Charismatic side of me let loose!" :)
It was a fun night!!
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Snake Bite!!!

Last week Thursday, I had gone to the pregnancy resource center in Mountain Home. As I was about to head home, I had called Jason to let him know that I was on my way. All I heard was crying in the background and Jason telling me to just hurry because Hunter had gotten bit by a snake!! Hurry??!!?? Mountain Home is an hour drive and I NEEDED gas especially if I had gotten home and we needed to take the dog to the vet.
I quickly stopped anyways and put a little gas in enough to get home and enough to get to a vet.
I was back on the road when Jason had called telling me not to rush. He said that the kids were all outside jumping on the trampoline when Hunter came over by them and the kids had noticed him cowering. Usually he cowers when in trouble, but as soon as you change your tone of voice his tail wags like crazy. The kids tried talking to him, but he continued to act like he was in trouble, yet wagging his tail a little as it was tucked between his legs. They knew something wasn't right, so they had gone into Jason's parent's house to get him. They all went into the trailer and Jason looked Hunter all over and that's when he finally spotted the two puncture wounds in his lip :( It went downhill from there. The kids went into a hysteria crying thinking that Hunter was going to die...and that's when I had called. Hunter's lip began to swell quickly. Jason looked on google to see what he could do and really there wasn't anything he could do. If he was bit by a copperhead or king snake, he would be ok. If he was bit by a rattle snake or diamond back snake, he'd have just two hours to live. By the time I had gotten home, both lips and mouth were swollen to the point that I had thought that he was carrying something in his mouth, which he usually does when we come home, but it was nothing...his mouth was just that big and swollen. His lip began to droop and his neck began to swell, but two hours past and he was ok. We think it was a copperhead. It took almost a good week before all the swelling had gone down. :(

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Walking Buddies :)

I go walking/jogging six days a week...sadly ya can't tell!! Ugh!!
Anyhoo, every morning Hunter goes crazy because he knows I am going for my walk. He always joins me and occasionally Jezebele...no clue how to spell it...(the golden dog), Tori (the black and white dog), and Chandler (the small brown dog) will join me. Sometimes I may have just one dog or two, maybe three, but this day all four came with :)

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Fall Pictures :)

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Trick or Treating in Bentonville :)

On Wednesday, October 31st, we had gone to Jason's bother Mike's house to go trick or treating and stayed until Friday afternoon. If we went trick or treating in Peel, it would take a week before we filled out buckets!!! Ha!!
Before we left, I had finished up school assignments with the kids. After lunch we headed out. We had gotten there around 4, had dinner around 5:30 and then the kids had all gotten their costumes on :) We left around 6:30 and a neighbor girl and her dad came along. By the time 8:00 came around, the kids had full buckets and tired legs!! But they all had a lot of fun. When we had gotten back, buckets were dumped and the trading began :)

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