Monday, December 29, 2008

A little recap

Just a few tidbits from the holiday festivities.

K, holding on to her prized possession and sitting on dad's lap. Im not sure how
much longer she will be able to fit there!

We went to S's grandma's house to visit and have lunch. There were gifts, of course, and the kids got to hang out with their cousin who they only see once a year. Im not sure how J is even hanging on in this wrestling match.....but Im thinking it requires some abs of steel...something I can only dream of having.

I spotted a candy mouth was really watering for some m and m's. In fact, Im pretty sure I was in withdrawal....having had my last handful while driving in the van. That must have been at least 10 minutes ago....I go in for the handful....only to discover this.

Who puts raisins in a candy bowl? Im just sayin.

K and I in deep discussion over her greatest present of all time. Im pretty sure I was teaching her how to do something. However, now that shes had the phone for all of 4 days....shes asking me, mama, did you know you can do this? Why dont you do it this way, mama? Ill be sitting across the room and she will text me and say, hey...did you know....Just when I thought I was getting FAST at the ego was feeling really good....4 days later? Shes blowing me away...she can text pages in the time it takes me to say, What?

Ohhhh...I see it. Another bowl. This one across the room. Sitting so nicely all by itself on the little table. I wonder, could it be?

Chex mix. Really? Cmon. Seriously.

After all that candy drama, we had to load back up and head to S's folks this time. To do another round of gifts and then have dinner. G has a new friend. She is pink and he loves her very much. Despite the fact that he can not remove her wand and turn everyone into pumpkins. He was very confused by this discovery. Mama, why cant I play with her wand? Hunny, it doesnt come off. Why not? Well, its sewn on there. That way you cant lose it. But its magic. If I lost it then all I have to do is say ring, ring, and it will come back to me. Oh, I say. I didnt realize that. How totally
silly of me. That makes perfect sense, hunny.

And a book. The way to all my kids' hearts? Books.

And me? Well, I was totally surprised and verklempt when I opened this. I was literally beside myself....flippin giddy, I was. I just couldnt believe it. Can you believe it? I cant believe it. I LOVE it. I am in love with it.

And, of course, every farmgirl has to have a pair of these, right? Im not on that farm yet, but clearly, Im on my way.

Monday, December 22, 2008

Crisis Averted

Seeing these laying around is usually not a good sign.

Now, see this?

Do you know what it is? Yes, that's right. It is the cover to the top of my mixer. My kitchen tool extraordinaire. My heart of the kitchen. My kitchen buddy. My friend in the kitchen. My kitchen pal who really knows how to carry her share of the load. Sigh.

I have been after my darling husband to take a look at my mixer for quite some time now. Take a look aka fix it. See, the mixer works, just the arm of it has been loose. So, when I would go to use it, I would turn it on and the mixing would begin, but it would not perform that great since the arm was kinda loose and shaking about.

So, when I used my mixer yesterday I thought maybe I would just throw that idea out there again. Ya know, just a friendly
reminder. This clearly was the reminder that rang the loudest. Or maybe he was really just trying to get out of making dinner......

The flashlight was needed to assess the situation and to then find all the little bitty screws that needed removed.

The screwdriver then made its appearance and the work quickly began.

This is the part where I begin to get a tad worried. What? You have to take all those parts OFF to get to the screws that need tightened? Really? You cant just use a REALLY long screwdriver? Oh, its the angle in which the screws lie that is the trouble....okay. Well, Ill be over here if you need me. I cant watch.

In the end, everything was fine. The pieces all got taken off, the screws got tightened up, and the mixer was put back together.

It was a bit worrisome while I sat away from all the work being done. Hoping that everything would go back in its proper place and then work once it got there. Turns out, I shouldnt have worried. Once again, my mixer works like a dream....

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Sad times


I was delivered some sad news today. The local farmer that we have gotten our egg share from for the last few years has had to discontinue his egg deliveries. Hard times seem to have fallen in some shape or form on just about everyone these days. This particular situation stems from the increase in fuel prices, increase in the
cost of egg production, and the significant decrease in the egg yield right now.

Needless to say, this sads me. I love my farm fresh, free range eggs. I love that I was getting them from somebody semi-locally. I love that I was able to see and talk to our farmer when I was at the market every Saturday. I love knowing that the chickens were being well cared for and that they got to free range pret' near all day long.

They wont be closing the doors of their farm all together. However, I can only imagine how hard it was for them to make such a huge decision. A large portion of their time was committed to the chickens and making sure they were happy and healthy.

So, to help lighten the mood after hearing some sad news, I decided to cook eggs for dinner. Breakfast for dinner always seems to make things a little festive. A little more laid back, carefree.

Here are 2 of my eggs getting ready to be whisked together to make some waffles.

Heres my waffle batter.

Here are 2 pears sitting behind the waffle batter.

Heres a waffle.

Here are 2 more of my eggs being fried up in my cast iron skillet for the kids.

Sigh. I love my eggs.

Friday, December 12, 2008

Very exciting

Its the first time ever that the stockings have been hung by the chimney with care.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

A Very Happy Ending

But we couldnt say goodbye just yet.

Danni had big news for us when we got to her house. Okay, well, I mean, she kinda told me about it a little before we arrived, but just a little tho. And I didnt know for sure that it was gonna happen till we got to her place.


Is that a donkey you see? It most certainly is. Danni made arrangements so that everyone could go and see Sarah and Holly and Pistol. Can you believe it? Isnt that the BEST news ever?

J got in a little Pistol butt scratchin.

And J seemed to do just fine with the ladies, too.

He seems a bit surprised by this.

Altho, it appears that maybe Sarah stole his heart this time.

And the feeling seems to be mutual.

Danni had to get her donkey "fix" as well! She couldnt get out of the van quite fast enough to get to those donks. It was very sweet.

A soft touch for Pistol.

Going in for the kiss.

Okay, going in for a BIGGER kiss. Kisses cant be too big, ya know?

Can you believe this is the view from the barn? I know, right?

We all had great fun visiting with the donks. It made my heart melt to see Pistol again. To give him great big butt scratches and to know that hes with his girls once again. Eating sweet hay and crunchy carrots. *Sigh*

We made our way back to the farm. Now it really was time to say good bye. We gave out big hugs and got all loaded up in the
van. Headcount...5...suitcases...4...snacks? Yes.

On our way to the airport we had to get gas, of course. I had to remind S that he was not able to pump his own gas. I mean, we are in Oregon, remember?

Look. Theres the guy whos gonna pump our gas for us. Does he look kinda angry to you? Nahhh....hes just wondering why this crazy lady is taking pictures of him.

Well, naturally, I had to get out and introduce myself. And take another picture. Can you see me in there? No? Thats because I am too short to make it in the picture. I was trying to get him and I in the picture....but he was pretty darn, meet "Mr Nice Man who allowed me to take his picture while pumping our gas."

So, thank you Miss Danni and Mr Jim for a fantastic time. I am so happy that it all worked out the way it did. And that we all got to hang out. And that we laughed like crazy. And that you didnt make me eat crab. And that we got to make cookies. And that we got to see the donks. And that I got to collect eggs again. And that I got to see Oregon rain. And that I now know that there are different kinds of beavers.

AND that we didnt drink ALL of your milk.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Wrapping things up

Our time at Critter Farm was coming to an end, sad to say.

This was the perfect opportunity for Danni to put the little guy to work.

Clean things up a bit before we head out.

She was giving him very specific instruction.

Yes, even the floor.

And Gergo thought I worked the poor little guy too hard.

After all that hard work...he had some time to chill and hang out.

J getting in some homework time and listening to some tunes.

Danni and K sharing secrets.....

We did leave the farm

Thats right. We didnt stay at Critter Farm the WHOLE time. As lovely as that would have been.

We drove for a little bit, too. And that little bit was just a big enough bit for J to fall asleep in the back seat.

We were on our way to see this....ohhhhh...ahhhhhh...see how pretty. I was told that this is a very popular waterfall.

It was just cold enough for Roxy to have to wear one of these. Look how cute.

We had a picnic. A cold picnic. That did not stop my little guy from eating a huge meal and then some. Notice how there are only 2 kids out there? J was shivering and shaking. He asked if he could sit in the truck. Cmon kid....we are from Illinois for crying out loud. This Oregon cold aint nothing compared to what we endure every winter. Of course, we dont normally have picnics in it.... And K? It looks like she may be meditating... I wonder if shes talking to the weather gods.

On the walk up(or maybe it was down) G decided that it would be a good idea to stick his arm into random dark holes in the moss covered stone walls. I dunno, but it gave me goosebumps to see him start by putting his hand into a black hole and then quite naturally it just progressed to his entire arm. Im sure if it was big
enough he would have just climbed right in.

We went on some really great geo caching expeditions that led us to log cabins, yawning piglet rocks, and some really rude trees. The kids loved all the exploring, especially the caches that had all the clues that needed to be deciphered.

And then we went to the beach. It was down right cold I must say. The kids were not phased by this in the least. G loved being chased by the waves and playing in the sand. He got so wet his little rubber boots were filled with water....his socks were just dripping little icicle shaped drips. His little lips were shivering, his teeth were chattering....but if you were to ask him? Im great, mama. Are you cold? Im freezing, mama. Do you want to go back to the van? No thank you, mama.