Monday, February 28, 2011

Project: Fight Fatigue!

Something has got to change. I am so tired all the time. This isn't something that has come on quickly, I've been exhausted ever since Greta was born. I'm going to attribute it to having two young children, but I suppose it could be due to anything (you know like milking a goat, having a part time job, being a stay at home mom, being a zoo know anything). I'm not talking about the occasional fatigue in the afternoon, but to the "drag your butt through the day" kind of tiredness. Sometimes I'll lay down on the floor in the living room while the kids are playing and I'll fall asleep, then wake up about twenty minutes later to Greta smacking my head with her hand. I get a solid eight hours of sleep a day, watch my sugar intake (I'm a tad bit hypoglycemic), take my vitamins and try to stay active. So far it's not enough. So this weekend I bought a treadmill off of craigslist. It's a nice big behemoth of a treadmill with all the bells and whistles. My hope is to use it three times a week and magically gain more energy.  I wasn't sure if the kids were going to let me use it three times a week so I'm coinciding my workouts with Curious George on PBS. That's a solid half a hour when both kids are glued to the tube. So far so good, worked beautifully today. Wish me luck!

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Giggles and fresh sand

I've got nothing to blog about, so I shall leave you with a video. I know, a cop out....but there really is nothing going on around here. The kids are thoroughly enjoying this spring like weather we are having. I'm loving it as well. Outside is so much better than inside. Fresh sand in the sandbox doesn't hurt either.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Funday Sunday: Apple Fritters

My husband loves apple fritters. When we were young and childless I'd run into the store and buy donuts on special occasions (or any occasion) and he'd always get apple fritters. Yesterday I decided I needed to make them, and make them I did...this morning. Oh how very yummy they were. You should try them, they were sinful little nuggets of future cellulite.

Apple Fritters

-1 1/2 C. Flour
-1 T. Sugar (I used 2)
-2 t. baking powder
-1 t. pumpkin pie spice (substitute cinnamon if you don't have this)
-1/2 t. salt
-2/3 C. milk
-2 eggs - beaten
-1 T. oil
-3 C. apples- peeled, and chopped
-vegetable oil for frying
-glaze (I used powdered sugar and orange juice)

Heat  and inch of vegetable oil in small sauce pan over medium heat. While it's heating mix flour, sugar, baking powder, pumpkin pie seasoning and salt in a bowl. Pour in milk, eggs and oil. Stir until combined. Add apples and stir until evenly distributed. Drop by spoonfuls into oil. Cook about 4 minutes a side. Make sure they are nice and brown before turning them.....the insides need time to cook. Glaze and devour. Yum!


Friday, February 18, 2011

The Light Bulb Moment

I have to take a moment and brag about my little boy. Wesley has always been a pretty bright little kid (doesn't every Mom say that about their kid?) but he's really taken off since starting preschool last fall. He's super excited about learning. They are working hard on the alphabet and he's got that down. During dinner (and throughout the day for that matter) we ask him "What does alligator start with?" He then thinks about and goes "Ah ah alligator.....A!!" He's pretty animated throughout this process and usually wants to do more.

Then the other night, about a week ago, he had a light bulb moment. Sean was reading to him before bed and the book had a story line along with little descriptive words next to some of the pictures. For instance there was a picture of a tree and then had a little "tree" next to it. Sean is reading along and Wesley points to the word and goes "T-R-E-E" and then Sean said what does that spell? He said "TREE!" Then proceeded to point to other words and do the same. It was awesome to see. It's just fascinating watching that little brain work. I can't wait for the day when he can read books to us. Maybe that day will be sooner than I had thought.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Dead Tree Fun

With the absolutely beautiful weather we've been having this week we decided to get a jump on the spring "to do" list. We had a big old pine tree die last year of the dreaded pine beetle epidemic and it had to go so Hubby used the chainsaw and brought it down. That will be the easy part. Now we have this giant dead tree on the ground. Until it gets further cut up it has become a playground for the kids. Both sets.

Monday, February 14, 2011

I Love....

In honor of Valentine's Day I thought I'd keep up the tradition of listing things that I particularly love right now in my life.

I love.....Miss Greta's goats in my lap......Valentine presents to the kids from Granny and Noni......Wesley's tea every afternoon......the kids playing and laughing together......watching Netflix movies in the evening with my hubby......girls night out.......the warm sun on my face after a too long winter......watching these little people grow and learn.......Greta's chubby kissable belly......FarmVille (level 90 baby) shopping without the kids.......that spring is just around the corner.....freshly laid chicken eggs......a box of ever helpful, handsome in footed sleepers........swinging with Wesley on my lap.......PlayStation 3 rentals in the mail..........being a Mom to these two wonderful little people.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

So done.

I am done with winter. I am through with the sub zero temperatures. I am through with hauling buckets of water outside to the animals. I am SO through with the 15 minute ordeal of dressing two young, squirmy kids in hats, gloves, sweaters, coats and snow boots. I'm just done. This morning I crawled out of my warm bed and curled up on the couch to watch the weather man announce that we hit an all time low last night. It hit -16 degrees. I was hoping to hear that our school district canceled classes since that would mean Wesley wouldn't have preschool. Unfortunately most school districts around here have hit their quota of snow days so they are being quite stingy with their cancellations. So, alas, school was happening today. 

The other unfortunate issue I've been experiencing this winter (and most winters) is snow packed hooves on the horses. When I go out to feed them in the morning they hobble up with this 6-8 inch cone of packed snow and ice under their front hooves. I go out there while they are eating and chip it off with a screw driver. I have to hack it off like the screw driver is an ice pick. After a little bit of research I found that spray cooking oil and Vaseline and both great at keeping that from happening again. So this afternoon I went out and smear the bottom of Desi's hooves with Vaseline. We'll see if tomorrow morning he's packed or not. Poor things.

I'm really hoping this is the last snow storm of the winter. It's doubtful but I'm really wishing. Hope you all are staying warm wherever you are.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

So Big!

We're just snowed in again so I thought I'd share a little video of Greta. When you ask her how big she is she'll throw her hands in the air and say "So big". She seems to be learning new words by the day, it's a precious age.

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Weekly Winners

Such a little doll face.

Wesley posing with his "mud man".

Snow dogs

The Little Tikes slide has moved indoors for the remainder of the winter. The kids love it!

Can't even tell there is a driveway there.

Smiling kids.

Posing with Mom

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Storm of the decade? Nah!

What fun the past few days have been! We got hit with the massive winter storm that hit most of the country and are just digging ourselves out. I'm happy to report we all survived and didn't even loose electricity once. That's amazing in it's self. We all just hunkered down and stayed home. Sean was able to work from home, it was nice not having to worry about him out on the roads. He's got an hour long commute each day so that's one less thing to worry about. Wesley's preschool was canceled so I didn't even have to truck him in either. It all worked out well. Sean actually did try and go to work yesterday and got the car stuck not ten feet away from the garage. He spent the next two hours getting the snow blower attachment put on the front of the Cub Cadet garden tractor. He then proceeded to use the tractor to clear the driveway. It worked great!

We actually only got about 6-7 inches of snow but the drifts were amazing.  The snow was never the issue it was the temperatures. Talk about miserable! It got to -6 degrees last night. I left the water on slightly to prevent any pipes freezing over night. It's dangerous weather for anyone to be out in, including animals. Everyone seemed to fair ok, although the horses had so much packed snow under their hooves this morning it looked like they were walking around on softballs. Poor things could hardly walk. They got all cozy in their horse shed and I gave them extra brome hay to keep warm. Stock tank heater is plugged in and working great. I'm sure we'll see how well it's working on our next electric bill. This morning I went out there to find them all laying down sleeping in the sun. 

The goat family (Dym and her kids) stayed cozy in the shop. The thermometer said 34 in there this morning. That's practically a heat wave compared to the -6.  I did let them out to get some sun. They wanted nothing to do with that idea. 

God forbid their tiny hooves touch the snow.

I hope everyone else is fairing well with this storm. Stay warm!

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Garden Fever

Who knew you could get sweaty working in the January. Can you believe it hit 75 degrees on Saturday? That's crazy talk! It was like a little slice of spring dangled in your face, and today it got yanked away. It's snowing like crazy today. But we sure enjoyed that rare day of spring weather. I have to admit it made me have garden fever. I've been planning for this years garden in my head for a few weeks now. It's like this mini obsession for me. It only got worse yesterday when the Burpee catalog came in the mail. I spent last night ogling all the new varieties of vegetables, circling all the things I want to order and try this year in the garden. There is something circled on each page almost. Oh decisions decisions. My favorite thing I found in that catalog? This:

It's called the Sunforest Mix and it's in the Burpee Catalog. I am so excited to try this! I could see Wesley really enjoying this.Can't you just imagine a big block of these with a path leading to a play area in the middle. Super cool.

Every Saturday, like clock work, I clean out the goat pen. It consists of a bale of straw and a package of pine shavings. It all gets put on the wheel barrow and then dumped back on the garden. I've been doing this since the beginning of December so you can imagine how much mulch is accumulating on the garden. My gardening bible, Ruth Stout's No-Work Garden Book, talks about the glories of mulching in the fall and having beautiful rich soil that is ready to plant seeds within in the spring. No rototilling needed. So I'm trying it. So far there's at least 12 inches of straw all over the garden. I've been dumping it on the grass as well, as I'm extending the garden this year (gotta be bigger!). So yesterday I looked underneath some old hay that had been there since November and the grass is gone leaving this rich, black, crumbing soil. This mulching stuff works! I'm pumped to plant in the spring (and not have to use the rototiller). According to Ruth you just make rows with string and push away the mulch. Sow your seeds, let them grow a bit then push that mulch back around the plants. Super easy.

Well, back to obsessing over the seed catalog.