Thursday, March 29, 2012

Such a busy time of year

Spring is such a busy time of year for us. We do spring cleaning, inside and out, which for seven people is a LOT needing done. We start on the yard goals which are large and many and include animal related tasks. And lastly, we start really focusing on fiber. New fleeces coming in, old fleeces sought out and used, inventory taken, rovings reordered, wonderful things dyed and carded, and everything packaged, labeled, and priced for the festivals. My workload triples in the spring and I am grateful for the extra hours of daylight.
This year is so promising. New blood coming into the rabbitry and definite progress with our english lines and our broken satins. I finally settled on a breed of chicken and right now we're hatching out black copper maran eggs and if all goes well we will stick with them and the olive egger crosses that will be produced with my americaunas. We added three lovely little khaki campbell ducks this year for the extra eggs too. The chicken coop will be relocated and expanded shortly and the rabbits are finally going to get the improved quarters that they deserve. I've already started building the fence around the garden and very soon the main fence will go up. We've gotten four raised beds built out of the ten I plan to have. The gardens are looking beautiful and we plan to add to them quite a bit this year. We've also started laying down the mulch for the pathways that we'd been planning. Most importantly, I believe we will finally be getting our addition this year! So it's busy, and good, and wonderful.
On another note, my girls are such amazing little people. Today while grocery shopping (me +5 kids) maggie, (who is 8) stopped multiple times without being asked to fix a malfunctioning sandal for cash (who is 2), to help herd the group in the right direction, to put things back on the shelf that the little ones tried to grab as they were walking by, ect. and Amadea who is 6, just blew me away tonight. Baby fell asleep on the couch and I really needed to get things done, so since they were all watching the movie they had earned I put her in charge of sitting next to him in case he woke up. When I came back in after folding laundry she had fallen asleep, but first she had put pillows above tarquinns head and at his feet and then she had curled up next to him with her blanket to make sure that he wouldn't fall. Amazing. We are not just raising children, we are raising extraordinary human beings. It is so good after all the destruction and noise and stress to see such responsible, awesome little people starting to form.
That's all for tonight, here's to a year of progress made and still enough time to sit on the porch and watch the kids play.

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Another shopping adventure!

Today we had to run out for milk, and a quick visit to the little shop next door to the closest place around that sells hormone free milk. I love stuff n' more because they almost always have something small that makes me happy (and comes home with me).
Todays finds were both baskets. I paid $8.00 for the big one and only $1.00 for the small one (which is funny because just last week I said I wanted one just like that to hold all of our first aide stuff). I'm not exactly sure what I'll use the big one for yet. I wasn't looking for a basket of that size, but I'm sure I'll find a use for it.
I have actually been hunting for an old crock to put all of my cooking utensils in, but I'd started to give up hope, I'd been to nearly every junk shop within an hour of me in the last few weeks and I've had no luck, but my old neighbor came to visit the other day right after I'd gotten home from another trip with no luck and just so happens to have two of the type I am looking for in his shed! I think we'll be trading our old water heater for whichever one that I like best.


Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Spring Cleaning - yuck

The last week has found me cleaning every day. Twice a year I hit the house hard from top to bottom. It takes me about a month. Yes, a whole month, and it's not because my house is huge either. I don't like to clean. I feel like spending time with the kids and/or eeking out that 30 min. to myself every now and then is just more important than a spotless home. So on a good day it looks.... "lived in". There's 8 people in this little house plus various critters. So anyway, I've spent the last week in the kitchen. I always start with the kitchen because it's the worst. It gets the most use, it's got the most stuff, it takes the longest to finish, and when it's done I breathe a sigh of relief because it only gets easier from there.
When I start my spring (or fall) cleaning spree I start with the things I can't stand in a room. This year it was the kitchen floor. Tile painted white. Looked filthy no matter how much scrubbing you did. On the first day I ripped it up, got all adhesive off, then we wiped the ceiling, the light fixture was taken apart and cleaned, the tops of the cabinets wiped, and all the many things that go on top of the cabinets were taken down, cleaned, and re arranged. Anything that hadn't been used since the last cleaning and was not purely there just to make me smile was trashed or put in the goodwill box. We also took advantage of having the hutch/pantry pulled out (for the tile) and emptied and scrubbed it down, wiped down everything (each individual canned good ect.) and put it all back in and reaarranged/organized. Day two we wiped all the walls and emptied every one of the top cabinets wiping them down and everything that was inside of them wiped and put away nicely, discarding anything that didn't see use or have some purpose. Day three we pulled everything off of the counters scrubbed the tile w/ a toothbrush, scrubbed the stove top and switches, scrubbed the counter, sink, and dish strainer (yep that's right, going on year two and the dishwasher still hasn't been hooked up). Day four we did the inside of the stove and the microwave. Day five we emptied out all the lower cabinets and scrubbed them and their contents, even the cleaning supplies got a bath. Tomorrow is day six, we will scrub baseboards and floor and move into the kids bathroom. Other than the floor the kitchen looks amazing (for us). I found a new tile cleaning recipe that works wonders (neighbor walked in and actually asked if we'd always had that tile and it's the tile that's been here for more than 15 years. and the best part? I'm almost done with it!

p.s. the tile cleaning recipe is on my pinterest board

Friday, March 2, 2012

Todays shopping adventure

I was starting to get sick of all this spring cleaning, so since miss maggie had a shooting sports meeting in the area tonight anyway we decided to leave a bit early and hit the junk shops (a.k.a. Antique shops) in Desoto. My favorite one was closed. At 3:00. So I went to the candle shop and bought some smelly goods and hit a couple of the smaller shops on the main strip. I got lucky. My main goals were pink glass and a crock for cooking utensils. At the first shop I found a neat little glass container w/ lid for $.50 and... a perfect cake stand w/ lid for $8.00. At the next shop I found a nice little pink plate for $2.00. I was pretty happy. Last stop was a shop that I don't usually go into because they are horribly overpriced and always have stuff that I want but I figured I'd do a quick walk through. In the very front on a table I saw my cake stands identical twin so I cruised over to look at the tag. This stand was identical, and the dome was marked $25 and the stand was marked $45. Made my day. So now I have new pretties. Oh, and we stopped by orchlens on the way home to look at incubator prices and I might have brought home some ducks. The husband just assumed they were chicks until he saw in the box. He's not nearly as pleased with me as I am right now. BUT I HAVE DUCKLINGS!! and they are soooo cute. Pictures of duckies coming soon.