Farm life

house,farm, misc 011_edited-1 house,farm, misc 015_edited-1 house,farm, misc 016This mother calved early with twins. Tristan helped me bring the 1st calf in from the meadow. The 2nd one was born later and was brought in in the morning.house,farm, misc 086_edited-1 house,farm, misc 087Taking calves to the calf barn. This one thought a run was a good idea πŸ™‚003_edited-1This is her thinking face πŸ™‚006_edited-1 007We had to go see the coyote pop-pop shot on the farm.009_edited-1010_edited-1My little miss tomboy πŸ˜‰blacknwhitemostly kirsten 011_edited-1Thus ends the mishmash of photos πŸ™‚ Just random shots taken around the farm that I decided to share.

Enjoy the fall weather while we have it πŸ™‚

For the cupcake lovers

cupcakesCake part : 1 1/2 cups flour

1 cup sugar

1/4 cup cocoa

1 tsp. soda

1 tsp. vanilla

1/2 cup oil

1 cup water

Mix together dry ingredients, and then add the rest. Fill cups 1/2 full of batter.

Filling : 8 oz. cream cheese

1 egg

1/3 cup sugar

dash salt

6 oz. chocolate chips ( I like semi-sweet )

Soften cream cheese and beat well before adding the rest of the ingredients. Put 1 tbsp. filling on top of batter. Bake at 350 degrees for 15 min.

A tip for a moist cupcake – Do NOT overbake πŸ™‚ I always set my timer for 14 min. and then check them. If I think the center isn’t quite set, I will do them 1 min. longer, but that’s it. Then I let them sit a bit in the cupcake pans after they are out of the oven. I think they may bake a little bit more just sitting in the pans.house,farm, misc 038I often get compliments on these when I make them πŸ™‚ Hopefully you enjoy them as well!

More of Jenna…

 

… because I can’t help myself πŸ˜‰house,farm, misc 018_edited-1 house,farm, misc 017 I seriously can’t believe everything our dog puts up with πŸ™‚ But Zoey loves Jenna, despite her rough and tumble ways πŸ™‚

 

Β I love this shot because it’s so her being in control πŸ™‚house,farm, misc 022 house,farm, misc 019 house,farm, misc 020_edited-1 house,farm, misc 021_edited-1house,farm, misc 023_edited-1 house,farm, misc 024_edited-1 IΒ  went camera crazy, because, can she be any cuter?? πŸ™‚house,farm, misc 025_edited-1 house,farm, misc 026_edited-1This is “shake a paw”. And I mean really shake that paw! house,farm, misc 029_edited-1Moving on… house,farm, misc 030Playing by the window.house,farm, misc 035My sweets in a rare moment of being still! Life is not dull πŸ™‚house,farm, misc 049 house,farm, misc 050Playing with her polly pockets. I never get tired of watching and listening to her play doll. Just is so different again after 2 boys!house,farm, misc 061 house,farm, misc 062 house,farm, misc 063Lovin’ the trampoline Aunt Diana bought. Many minutes spent on it. Also many squabbles. The joys of motherhood are many πŸ™‚house,farm, misc 081 house,farm, misc 082And that’s all for today πŸ™‚

Be blessed!

Cultivating a grateful heart

This week I had the privilege of attending a womens’ seminar. I really enjoyed all the topics and the good food! One of the topics really challenged me. She began with a question (and I may not have it word for word), “What if you woke up today with what you thanked God for yesterday?” Hmmm. Pretty sure I didn’t thank Him for nearly enough! 014

It’s easy to be grateful when life is going well. Not so much when it isn’t. But if we can look beyond ourselves and our circumstances, we are a blessed people! Can we be thankful for the times when things go wrong? When we are discouraged? I know I can complain too much.

Paul says in 2 Corinthians 12:10, “Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in needs, in persecutions, in distresses,for Christ’s sake. For when I am weak, then I am strong.” I’m definitely gonna have to work on that πŸ™‚

Can I be thankful for the huge, gigantic laundry pile? It means we have clothes to wear. And plenty of them!

What about that person that is driving EXTREMELY slow in front of me? At least I have a vehicle and can drive πŸ™‚015

That cow that swats you in the face with her tail, every.single.time? She gives us milk, and that milk check is good πŸ˜‰

What about that sink full of dishes? That means we had food to eat.

That dear child that knows just how to push your buttons? Maybe God is teaching you patience πŸ™‚016

There IS a positive side to things. This list of things I thought of would seem trivial to some people. Those that are dealing with cancer, with a death, with pain every day, etc. But I believe that God blesses us when we praise Him in spite of whatever.

This is something that I need to really work on! And I’m determined to do better at having a grateful spirit!

So if you happen to hear me complaining, remind me that I should be grateful πŸ˜‰018

Enjoy this chilly, fall weekend!

Curiosity

Children are curious. Some more so than others. Sometimes you get tired of the questions. But it’s how they learn. I’ve got a few curious children πŸ™‚ house,farm, misc 055_edited-1Jenna was fascinated with these earthworms. She is my little tomboy πŸ™‚house,farm, misc 057_edited-1 house,farm, misc 058I declare she’d pick up a snake if she’d see one. Bugs, bees,toads, she’s not afraid of much πŸ™‚ Except mean big brothers that say “Bear!” and shout “GRRR!” Poor child. Hope their is no lasting trauma πŸ™‚house,farm, misc 059_edited-1 Tristan found this dead pigeon. Had to carry it around for awhile. He’s curious too. Mostly about cows πŸ™‚house,farm, misc 091 house,farm, misc 093_edited-1I get curious when all the children are outside and I don’t hear anything. So I go spy with camera in hand. And sometimes, I repeat SOMETIMES, I am pleasantly surprised at how nice they are playing together πŸ™‚house,farm, misc 094_edited-1 house,farm, misc 095 house,farm, misc 096_edited-1 house,farm, misc 097 house,farm, misc 099_edited-1 house,farm, misc 100_edited-1 house,farm, misc 101 house,farm, misc 102Tristan was tickled to find this little guy!

And if you are curious about why there is all sorts of things spread around on the ground, and what are these children doing?? :), I’m not sure myself πŸ™‚ But they call this area their playhouse. And it’s behind the barn. So we let them be creative. And try to ignore the mess πŸ˜‰

To bless you

I found Kara’s story through a news article. A courageous woman, sharing her battle with cancer and spreading Christ’s love. You can check her blog out here. Also, she and her husband shared their story on Focus on the Family. You can hear that by heading to their website and clicking on broadcasts. I was so blessed!

Have a wonderful weekend!!

Today, I’m thankful for…

house,farm, misc 008_edited-1New siding that is now done. Out with that ugly yellow, in with lovely neutral πŸ™‚20141008_140909My sweet girl, all cuddly and fast asleephouse,farm, misc 046_edited-1Children that play and laugh together. Sometimes πŸ˜‰ house,farm, misc 066 house,farm, misc 070 house,farm, misc 071_edited-1 house,farm, misc 073A bountiful corn crop and full siloshouse,farm, misc 065Tractors with cabs so I can send Jenna along with somebody πŸ™‚ This time it was with her Uncle Daryl.house,farm, misc 075A girl full of spunk πŸ˜‰house,farm, misc 089Clean kitchen floors. However long they may stay that way πŸ™‚

There is so much more I’m thankful for – a warm blanket I’m snuggled in as I type, a husband that works hard, 4 full of life children, a roof over my head, freezers full of food (including pork, remember those pigs? :)), some quiet time to myself,and the list could go on and on.

God is good πŸ™‚

Easy, Delicious bars

If you haven’t noticed, I LOVE chocolate πŸ™‚ I also love an easy recipe. This came from a church friend when she brought us a meal after I had Jenna. It is my go to recipe when I’m having last minute company, or feeding a hungry work crew. The best part – you don’t even need your mixer.

Crust : 1/2 cup butter or margarine

1 1/2 cup graham cracker crumbs (1 sleeve)

1 (14 oz.) can Eagle BrandΒ  sweetened, condensed milk ( I’ve used other brands, but I do like the thickness of Eagle Brand)

Toppings :

2 cups semi – sweet choc. chips

1 1/3 cups flaked coconut

1 cup chopped nuts

1 cup peanut butter chips

1 cup miniature marshmallows

Preheat oven to 350 degrees (325 for glass dish). In 9×13 pan, melt butter in oven. Sprinkle crumbs evenly over butter. Pour sweetened, condensed milk over crumbs. Sprinkle with 2 to 3 toppings of your choice. Press toppings down gently with a fork. Bake 25-30 minutes. Don’t overbake πŸ™‚ When I see mine browning around the edges, I get it out. Remove from oven. If using marshmallows, sprinkle on directly after removing from oven. Press down with a fork. Bake 2 minutes more. Cool. Cut into bars. Store covered at room temperature. ENJOY!

My family likes the semi-sweet & pb chips for the toppings, so that’s what I stick with. Let me know if you try them, and if you liked them πŸ™‚house,farm, misc 037

Cows and a boy

I watch him with the cows, and I wonder sometimes if they speak a special language πŸ™‚ One thing I know for sure, he knows the cows. Knows if they are moved to a different stall, knows who had what calf. Just knows πŸ™‚ Now if we could get him to like learning his alphabet, numbers, etc. like he loves those cows πŸ™‚house,farm, misc 043_edited-1 house,farm, misc 044_edited-1 house,farm, misc 045_edited-1house,farm, misc 042_edited-1 house,farm, misc 041_edited-1I think this one is my favorite. Just him, sitting there, observing. Future farmer? πŸ™‚ We hope!

Here’s hoping you have a relaxing, enjoyable weekend!!

Ever wish there were 2 more of you? (or 3 or 4 :))

One morning this week, this thought came to me. Ok, maybe more than one morning πŸ™‚ I looked at the state of my house, and wandered if I had accomplished anything at all the day before. Seriously, I should have taken pictures, but that seems way more embarrassing than just talking about it. My table was full of wash, unfolded and folded, as were my coffee table and sofa. There was dishes in the sink, and more wash to hang out. My upstairs was supposed to be getting cleaned. Thus far I had managed to scrub the toilet πŸ™‚

I can guess what you are thinking. Either she is a poor manager, or maybe she should get up earlier in the morning and get something done. Well, perhaps my management skills could use some help, but that particular morning, I was up early. EARLY, I say. What some people think is the middle of the night πŸ™‚ But alas, it wasn’t that I was up early to do my work, but to milk cows. And when I came in and saw my house, and thought of my to do list for the day, I felt a little depressed.

But now,Β  I feel a little better. There is only 2 more bedrooms to clean, and while there is still wash on the table, the pile is diminished. For now πŸ™‚ And my sweet boy even folded some wash without my asking him. And cleaned up the garage, and bagged the leaves. I don’t know what happened, but I rejoiced in his diligence! πŸ™‚ And Kirsten dusted some extra things without me asking. It IS those small things that can go a long way to cheer a mom up!!

My list of things that need done still seems large. I will spare you the details πŸ™‚ But I thought of a song that I’ve heard. There is a line that goes something like this – Father, carry me. When I’m feeling tired, and I need energy, I say Father, carry me.

God does care about the little things in our lives. The things that can stress us. And stretch us. It’s up to us if we let Him share our load πŸ™‚

Happy Wednesday! 006