Monday, July 30, 2012

A very sad day

Today, our beloved bloodhound, Daisy, died. She jumped the fence and ended up hanging her collar. Daniel found her after having to stay over at work for 4 hours. To say the least, he was devastated. The kids and I had to take her to the shelter as we couldn't dig a hole big enough for all 80lbs of her.

Daisy literally walked into our yard and life 2 years ago. We had her checked out at my vet clinic and had her dna tested to see if she was.mixed with something. It came back that a full blood bloodhound in fact walked into our yard with no tags or microchip.

Word around the neighborhood was she used to live with this guy who was in jail and that she had been running the woods since she was a puppy. She wasn't one for staying put. At 80lbs she could flat foot our fence.

She had two litters with us. The first had 13 and the second 9. We still own two boys from the second litter, Red and Chester. It was clear they tried to help her from the dirt on their noses.

She was a great obnoxious lovable girl and is greatly missed. The hardest part is Conner asking where Daisy is. The best I could think to say is she is in heaven.

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Tomato science project

Yesterday, I was walking through Walmart and found my personal favorite section - the clearance section. At the end of summer all the garden stuff goes on sale and there was one of those upside down tomato planters for $2. How could I pass it up.

I have been pretty bummed this year not getting to plant a garden so I saw this as a silver lining, who knows I might get a harvest in time for canning time. So the experiment is does it work. It took me a while to find a place to set it up. The shepherd hook I planned on using bowed over in half after filling it half way with dirt. I ended up hanging it on the side of the shed.

So far the only down side to this upside down planter is how heavy it is. I would have gotten half the workout if I had just dug a hole and tied it to a stake. It took a lot holding it up and guessing how high to put the screw.

I also found some potato planters that I plan on starting as soon as some potatoes get eyes. Really looking forward to my discount garden experiments. Wish me luck.

My cleaning solution

I think I found what will work for to make cleaning something that doesn't get in the way too often. Now this won't eliminate the chaos in my life known as Conner and Miranda but I am hoping to reduce the amount of time I spend daily on chores.

I found this in Parent magazine. Since I am not made of money, instead of paint and a shadow box, I used Conner's crayons and some paper.

First I categorized what all I do into 5 areas: Bedrooms, bathrooms, laundry, kitchen, and outside. I didn't include the living room because that has to be everyday or it will look like a tornado plowed through it. Also I needed at least two days for laundry.

Second I looked at my normal week and assigned those areas a day of the week with one day as a free day. For example, Tuesdays and Thursdays are laundry days.

The hardest part of this is sticking to the area for the day. I am very much a type A personality and get fixated very easily.

Lastly, post this somewhere you will see it. While working on this project, Conner made his own sign. Here is how it works out
Day.             Mommy.          Conner
Monday.      Kitchen.           Baking
Tuesday.      Laundry.          Preschool
Wednesday. Bedrooms.     Pick up toys
Thursday.     Laundry.         Preschool
Friday.          Bathrooms.    Park
Saturday.      Outside.          Garden

Miranda being barely two months old gets to do whatever we are doing. Daddy works a swing shift at work so he also gets off easy. All he has to do on his days off is work the dogs and play with the kids. He also cooks.

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Chores .... bum bum bum!

I will let you know how it goes but I am trying an experiment. My whole life I have worked outside the house and chores where part of my off time. Now that I am home full time, I am missing that since of accomplishment that work gave me.

So here is the plan and feel free to weigh in on it. Turn the hours between 9am and 5pm will be very structured and work like and anything after that will be free time.

The only flaw in this plan are the 2yr old and 2 month old. They don't understand that Mommy needs to get somethings done to feel useful. Don't get me wrong, I love playing with and teaching them things and if someone would come clean my house daily for free that is all I would do.

This is also exciting because I can start exercising again and drop the 100+ pounds I have gained between both pregnancies. If this whole scheduling thing works out I will be making a second blog to follow my weight loss journey.

Wish me luck!

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Cleaning ... does it ever end?

I'm not normally one to complain about cleaning, sometimes I even enjoy finishing various projects; however lately it seems like it has been never ending. As soon as the sink is empty the laundry basket is over flowing. As soon as the floor os mopped it seems toys explode from the toy box. It's mind blowing how fast everything has been unwinding.

Luckly, Conner has been trying to help as much as possible. When I am doing dishes he is right there filling his cup with water to rinse the dishes. As soon as the dryer sounds off he is running to open the door for me. He even has his own rag to wipe up his spills.

Unfortunately not everything he does is helpful. Just a bit ago we were changing the laundry out and I pulled folded clothes out of the dirty cloths basket. Conner said "I helping" as he brings more clothes out of the closet. He was helping mommy have something to do. Thanks but no thanks.

Sunday, July 15, 2012


<p>When we moved to Mississippi two months ago it was to our current rental house. It has served its purpose but we are itching to move to our own home. <br>
Today we went to see a realitor about homes in our price range. We told her one to five acres and not in a subdivision. She took is to three terribly small houses on 1/4 acre lots. When we got home i googled four properties that were perfect for us. I was amazed at how little this woman listened and was more concerned with moving these properties. Granted, I don't know much about realistate, bit I do know it's nothing like buying shoes.

Long story short we will be looking for a different realtor tomorrow. Though the title of this blog includes the term "homesteader" we aren't there yet. We are at the starting line in that aspect. We have researched what we want to do and what will be additional sub categories are goat herding for dairy and fiber. Raise chickens, garden, harvest our own grass fed meat and home school our children. It's ambitious but it is also exciting.

If you are also at the starting line, I would like to recommend the following books as they have changed my families life: the encyclopedia of country living, made from scratch, and nourishing tradition. Good luck and till next time.

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Cooking leasons

Potty training

Well, its that time in Conner's life to gain the independence of big boy undies. I got the hint finally when he said to me, "Mommy I am wet help." This was also around the time that my daughter was due. Talk about a lot on my plate: nine months pregnant, potty training a two year old and getting use to Daniel going back to work.

Right after Miranda was born, my mom came up from Texas to help me with things while I got back in the swing of things. She decided she would try potty training Conner and bought him those expensive pull ups. The week and a half she was here Conner ran through $70 worth of these trainer pants. To me and him they were just diapers. I don't have a clue as to how anyone could potty train a child on these. Valued effort but no success.

A few weeks later, I got in some diaper covers called thirsties for Miranda. I also got 1 big enough for Conner because, I refuse to buy another box of diapers again. Well, he took to them and even became more aware of when he needed to go potty. Right direction but still no dice.

With two babies in cloth diapers, there was a every two week trip to Walmart for one or two more packs of Gerber cloth diapers, my initial supply was for one newborn. Next to the cloth diapers was a pack of cloth trainer pants which because Conner's big boy undies. It was a miracle, almost like instant potty training. There are still accidents at night which is fine ( thats what mattress covers are for) but the minute he got big boy undies he never looked back.

The only down side is his pants don't fit now that he doesn't wear a bulky diaper. Hey, if thats the only bad thing I will gladly except.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Welcome to the game

The quickest synapse of how I got here goes something like this: Got dragged to Austin Texas in highschool, met the love of my life, had a baby boy, moved to Dallas where I worked 50hrs a week and hubby stayed home with the kid. After some time our dogs walked into the yard and we got pregnant. In my last trimester we moved to Mississippi and had a our daughter at home. One month later Hubby is back in the work force and I am home full time with two babies in cloth diapers, four giant bloodhounds and one white labrador, and we our still optimistic.   
After reading all that I hope you are still intrigued and will be understanding that posts are randomly added.