Monday, October 23, 2017

Friday Off

October is always a month of Friday's off for the kids. I'm not sure why but three of the four Friday's are no school. It's fun and we try and go do things together on that day off. Last Friday I took the kids into town to have lunch with Sean and then a nice walk. Wesley's teacher is doing a unit on Japan and brought in some Japanese candy and soda for the kids to try. He enjoyed them a lot so we went into the same store to buy some. We couldn't resist all the Day of the Dead merchandise they had displayed and had the kids model some rather strange sunglasses.






Because every kid needs a yard of bubblegum.

Friday's are my usual grocery shopping days and as much as I love my kids I need to shop by myself (it's a lot of "Mom we need these! or Mom you never buy us candy!). Let's just say it's exhausting. So my friend Jessica and I teamed up and she watched the kids while I shopped and then I watched the kids while she shopped. It worked and the kids got five hours of play time with their buddies.



Saturday, October 21, 2017

Rocket Launch

The fifth grade did a rocket project and built their own rockets. Then last week they each launched their rocket. I reminds me of when I was a kid in 4H and built rockets that were launched. It was fun to watch!






Friday, October 6, 2017

Sunflowers

I've said it before and I'll say it again, I love Fall. I love that it's the end of the growing season and it's time to slow down and relax after a long summer. The air slowly becomes less sultry and more crisp. It's been in the 90's still here as of last week so I'm ready for that to happen.We found a field of sunflowers not to far from home and decided to go see them. The farmer said everyone was welcome to take pictures. They are actually trying to sell the field and thought this would be a good way to bring people out to see it. I thought that was clever.



After being stung by couple of bees this summer Greta was a little worried about wearing a yellow shirt in a field of sunflowers.



Wednesday, October 4, 2017

Birthday Girl!

Greta just had her eighth birthday. Crazy how times flies! She sure is a good kid, kind and gentle (well to everyone except her brother). She's a happy kid that makes friends easily. We let her invite three girls from her class this year in addition to Jessica's kids (that are like cousins). It was a crazy fun party with 9 kids running, screaming and having fun.






Eight years with the same hat and same cute girl.
 We went to Olive Garden (her favorite place to eat) and then to Build-A-Bear (her favorite place to go) for her annual Birthday outing.



Our church likes to put the spotlight on the kids celebrating a birthday and this year was no different. She got to wear this to Sunday school and to the church service.


She's very much into arts and crafts and sewing. We thought it might be the perfect time to introduce a sewing machine since she's been asking about learning to use one for months. My parents got her one and we set it up and sewed a few items now.


Monday, September 18, 2017

Chicks & Bean

So do you remember those chicks that I saved from their murderous mom? They left my living room this weekend. I'm kind of sad. I kinda like chicks in my house. The cute little peeps that welcome me when I come into the living room, their sweet little faces staring out from the little window. But alas they had become teenage chicks and weren't so little and fuzzy anymore. Plus they make a lot of dust in the house. No, they need to go join the flock and hopefully get along with their evil moms. They are being kept in a pen inside of the hen house until they are around the same size as the other hens. Oh and as for whether any of them are roosters, I have at least one....which I'm kind of excited about. I've been keeping chickens since 2010 and never had a roo.

On nice days they get to go outside.

Our little Bean is integrating nicely into the household. It's like she's always been here. She's already situated herself as alpha dog and bosses all the boys around. Every morning when I put my shoes on to take the kids to school she jumps up on me and waits for me to take her to the car. She sits between the kids when we go to school and rides on my lap on the way home. It's our little routine. I feel bad not bringing all the dogs be she's so tiny and calm compared to the others.



I tried to get a selfie with her and she went all "spazy" but it made for a funny picture.


Did manage to get a good one.


Monday, September 11, 2017

Sean's Home for Retired Milling Machines

The Hubby has been spending a lot of time out in the shop on various projects. Last month he gained another project when the F250 blew a spark plug. He bought the kit to replace all ten spark plugs with inserts to prevent that problem from happening again. Most were fairly easy but several in the back were pretty difficult to replace. I believe it took him two weekends but he got them all replaced and the truck back to running smoothly.

As you can imagine, his knees hurt.
He's been on the hunt for the perfect milling machine to replace two of his current milling machines. He has a Bridgeport in pieces that he planned to restore but decided to replace it with a working machine and sell it. I think he's decided he has too many "project" mills and wants to actually use them rather than put them back together.

He found a nice one on Craigslist in working order and decided to buy it. He brought it home and then we had the fun opportunity to unload this 2700 pound piece of machinery off of our trailer. He loaded it onto the trailer using a Come-Along and a few lengths of pipe (and about three hours of time) so he used the same method to get it off the trailer. He slowly let the cable out of the Come-Along while I took the front pipe out and replaced it in the back. It worked great and since we had gravity on our side it went pretty quickly.






So now he has four milling machines in his small shop. I told him he's running a rescue for elderly milling machines. We'll see if he can rehome a couple of them to free up space.....for more.

Friday, September 8, 2017

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

And then there were four.

Wesley's been asking for a guinea pig for several months now. I told him he needs to save up his money and then he can buy one. In the mean time I thought I'd see what guinea pigs sold for by going to Craigslist and looking for baby guinea pigs. So I click on the "Pets" link and there as the first listing is a person trying to rehome their Boston Terrier. I had to click on it. Up came three adorable pictures of a sweet one year old female Boston Terrier. Forces beyond my control made me go get my cell phone and text the owner just to see if the dog was good with other dogs. I mean, why even show the add to Sean if the dog wasn't good with other dogs?

Of course the owner texted back immediately saying she was fabulous with other dogs. So there I sat debating whether to ask Sean if we can get another dog. We already had three dogs....Chance our 14 year old terrier mix, Cody the 9 year old lab and Winston the 1 year old Boston. Winston and Chance play a lot together. It consists of Winston chasing Chance around until little old Chance gets tired and lays down on his side. Then Winston tugs at his ears and jumps around him. It's kind of sad. Chance is old and can't play like he used to, he tries though. I'd been thinking we needed a young dog to take the strain off of Chance. Sean agreed. I went and picked up Bean the Boston Terrier on Friday.

Bean is tiny compared to Winston. She's a whopping 12 pounds while Winston is 19. They play and play and play. She's feisty and dominant over Winston. He loves every moment. The older dogs could care less about her arrival.


These two play.....
...and play....
....and then retire to the water dish.
The kids love our little Jelly Bean.
Cody shares his bed.
My typical evening routine. I'm definitely a dog person. Dieter, my parents dog is in this mix, that's why there are five.

Saturday, August 26, 2017

Experiement gone awry

A little over a month ago one of my cuckoo maran hens went broody. This means she sat on some eggs in a nest box in the hopes of hatching them out and raising chicks. I've never had a true broody hen in the seven years I've been keeping chickens. She would not budge from that nest (except for the very occasional food and water breaks). I was down to four hens and thought it might be fun to give her some fertile eggs to hatch out. Since we don't own a rooster she was laying on infertile eggs. I got onto one of the farm sale groups on facebook and asked if anyone had any fertile eggs I could buy. Sure enough I nice lady said I could come get eight of her eggs she collected that morning. Six of the eggs were Delaware chickens and the other two a Dorking/Delaware cross.

This was three weeks ago. In the mean time another hen went broody. Apparently (and I didn't know this) when one hen sees another hen sitting on a nest, she will want to do the same. Broody behavior is contagious. So I had two hens sitting when I brought home those fertile eggs. Well, 20 days later I heard peeping when I went into feed that morning. Seven of the eight eggs had hatched, the last egg wasn't fertile.




All was good for the first two days. Momma hen #1 took her chicks and stayed in one corner of the hen house. Momma hen #2 stayed in the other corner. I would come in the give fresh food and water and both hens would fluff up and try their best to protect their chicks. But then other hens would come in to eat and drink and hen #1 would go flippin' nuts. Running around trying to keep chicks velcroed to her side and in the mean time pecking those chicks. I told her if she hurts those chicks they become mine. Sure enough on day 2 one of the chicks had been pecked hard and was bleeding. So I pulled the brooder out and collected all six remaining chicks from both hens and am rearing them in the brooder in my living room. The poor pecked chick died later that day. I think in a perfect world where that hen didn't have any other hens around she would have been fine but I didn't have an isolated area for her (and I should have). Oh well, both hens can have their chicks back in five to six weeks when they leave the brooder. I don't think we'll be trying this experiment again.

In the mean time Winston thinks the little peeping appetizers in the hot box are quite interesting.



Thursday, August 24, 2017

Eclipse

It's a tradition that when the kids go back to school Sean takes those first two days off of work. We plan to sit around and watch tv, play PS4 and relax after a long summer. It's fun and we look forward to it each year. What we fail to realize each year is how extremely exhausted we are at the end of each summer. When school starts it's a stressful time, so many things to do and sign up for. Those two days of vacation for us turn into a "lay on the couch and try to regain energy" time. We had fun, we watched Rogue One. We'd been meaning to watch it for months now but couldn't commit to watching in the evening because it's over 2 hours long and we're old and need to be in bed by 10:30 just to function the next day.

He also happened to be home for the eclipse viewing Monday which was nice. We didn't get around to buying eclipse glasses so he dug out his welding masks which had a shade of 13 and 14 which worked for viewing the solar eclipse. We call it redneck style.



Tuesday, August 22, 2017

First Day

School started back up again last week. This year Wesley is moving into the 5th grade and Greta into 2nd grade. Wesley is kind of sad that this is his last year in the elementary school. Greta is excited to see her friends again.

We had a really fun summer and I'm sad to see that end, but a little happy to get back to sculpting full time again (the orders were backing up!).