Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Bits and pieces

Summer is zooming by at warp speed around here... the busy days just seem to fly by!

What have we been up to?

Working in the yard and gardens... Keeping everything watered when it's so hot and dry is a daily job, especially with the new sod I just laid. (Which is looking very good, by the way!) We're getting a few tomatoes, but not all the plants are doing well... it might be a small yield this year. The jalapenos are looking great, and producing well, and the green beans and lettuce have gone wild! They must like these warm dry days... and the pumpkin patch looks great. All in all a good year.. (it's so much easier to garden without the spring hail storms!)

We had the septic tank pumped yesterday... What a miserable job! I'm not sure what the people who built our house were thinking, putting the septic tank (and it's covers) in the middle of the front yard. It means every few years we have to pull up the grass and dig up the covers (for pumping) then lay the grass back down. The grass, of course, doesn't do well with being pulled up and replaced and always looks a mess for a year or so afterwards. :(

We had S over the weekend... She's doing "ok" but not great. We took her to the movie in the park Saturday night (brrr... it was SO cold) and the farmer's market Sunday morning. I think she had a good time...

After doing well for a couple of months, M's gastroparesis has been flaring up lately. He was sick most of last week, and still isn't back to "normal" (for him). His diet is still super restricted (which can sometimes be a fight) and most of the time he does pretty well. I'm not sure why he suddenly got so sick... hopefully his gut will start working better soon and he (we) can all relax a little.

The kids and I have finished the annual chopping down/pulling out of the purple thistles for this year. We ended up with 11 LARGE trash bags of thistles, countless tiny stickers in our skin, and a deep appreciate for power tools. (We finally ended up having to cut one of the patches down with a chain saw!!) As soon as the trash guys come today, the purple thistles are GONE... hallelujah!

I've finally started work on a project that has been sitting around for a year or so... fixing up a little handmade wooden kitchen for granddaughter Emmy. I found the little kitchen at a garage sale a long time ago and it's been sitting around waiting for me to spruce it up for our Miss Emmy. Yesterday I took all the hardware and doors off, wood puttied, and gave it a light sanding followed by two coats of primer. Today I'll (hopefully) finish up the painting and start shopping for new cabinet and "stove" knobs, and a new counter top.

And yes, we've been getting school done too. We are working primarily on life skills these days, with work sites and other volunteer work being a big part of our homeschool. But we are still plugging away at math, using Teaching Textbooks. Math is a subject that, if not continually reinforced, both kids tend to forget... so we are careful not to neglect math. R's also keeping up with her ukulele lessons (you'll find her playing in the park on Wednesday mornings, she and her teacher moved her lessons there for the summer) and we always have a read-aloud going.

We're in the middle of our "Comedy Movie Night" series too... We started with "Christmas Movie Nights" during the holidays last year, and it was such a hit we decided to have some other movie night series' throughout the year. What we do is pick our favorite movies, or movies we think will be favorites, of a certain genre and schedule them, one each week, on a particular evening after dinner.  The schedule is printed out and posted on the frig. Our movie nights are usually Thursdays, and we're working our way through such gems as Three Amigos (the kids laughed 'til they cried!), R.V. (an old favorite), and Open Season (one of M's picks :). I think we all look forward to movie night, it's a time to just kick back and be lazy for awhile. Comedy Movie nights will last through the end of August, then we'll take a short break and start "Scary Movie Night" sometime in September, followed by "Christmas Movie Night" again in November/December.

I guess I've rambled about this and that enough... time to get out to the barn and get our big boys fed. ;)

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