Thursday, June 7, 2012

Is This What's Known As An Epic Pail - I mean Fail?


As I finally get back to this, I see that it's been too long - AGAIN.

Google is killing me.

I have to log out of everything I do in life to post here, then start all over again.  I logged into Blogger and watched all my labor that I had open disappear.   You might say, just log back in and open them all up again...

Ha.   I repeat, a  BIG, FAT, HA!!!!

It's not just 'out of sight, out of mind' but if something disappears from view where I can continually keep my mind fresh, it's like a black out in my brain cells.  My neurotransmitters fizzle, then burn up like a fuse that turns to ash right before the whole thing blows up.

Once, I prayed for amnesia...  You know what they say.

.... what do they say, anyhow?

Once, I prayed for amnesia... You know what they say.

.... oops.

We took a vacation we've been saving up for years, and boy, did we need it.

We spent a very quiet week on Hilton Head Island.   This is the sunrise.   This is what I look forward to the most.   Being down on the beach, in the water, watching the sun rise and standing in wonder, awe, and amazement at God's glory.

I say with some guilt that we wanted so much to visit with very dear friends while we were there, as well as having them come over for a day.   But when we got there, we just shut down.   We did not know just how exhausted we were until we laid aside our stress, tensions, to-do lists and just let go.   We spent the entire week pretty much without calling or texting anyone, but just hanging out together and swimming, boarding, biking, tennis, puzzling, reading, eating, sleeping, rocking, and all the other things you are supposed to do on a real vacation.

We did end up doing 15 miles on the beach one day.   My seat is STILL sore!

On another day we biked across island to the big touristy spot, but all we did was buy some cold drinks, sit on some chairs, and watch the yachts come and go in the harbour.   We did not even buy a souvenir.  

HOORAY for being BORING!

And now we are back home and we still often imagine the feeling of that water around us as we just relaxed and let the waves gently roll past.   Many wonderful memories.

I did find this very cute and light summer dress with scads of flowing skirts.  I wear it all the time at home.  I still feel like I'm in the tropics.

 So the skies have been magnificent lately; all blue and puffy.  Just like Spring loves to be.

I could not resist and expanded little garden in addition to the three tomatoes. It's doing very well.   Just some summer squash, bell peppers, and cucumbers.  I keep it small as we could be asked to leave at any moment, but it's just a little bitty one.

Here's to Spring's first tomatoes!



Saturday, May 5, 2012


Getting exercise in the last year or so had been increasingly difficult.   I've become what I have always dreaded; a pc potato.

I work at a computer for most of the day.   This gives ample time for me to... become ample.

But today was a fabulous day.   Michael's plans fell through.  He was going to be gone with a friend at a park all day, hiking, running, playing sports, swimming, and whatever else two energetic young men can find to do.    Staying home was a bit of a let down for him.

Gladly this all worked out into my favor.   I had determined that while he was gone I was going to find ways to be active all day long, whether walking in the beautiful weather, doing some dancing, perhaps some exercise DVDs, etc.    But instead, I got to be active with my son.

We spent some time practicing Shitō-Ryū karate, did some calisthenics, then headed out to the barn loft for some working out up there, rope climbing, and clearing out more areas to hang the rings later on.  We've got to go find our power drill this week.   It's hard to find anything these days.  We and our stuff are like ships in the night, perpetually missing any contact.  I wish someone on that ship would cannon shoot some supplies over.  ---  A batch of freshly baked cookies to the first person who can find my checks AND give them to me.

I had a grand time walking for a couple of miles down our country road, while Michael ran circles around me in his newly acquired ACUs and hiking boots, his black A shirt, and him stopping every few minutes to roll out another set of pushups.

We met some colorful characters along the way.    Had some callouts from one house that I'd rather not have had.  Then we had an enjoyable conversation with some motorcyclists who were retracing a ride after having dropped and lost their keys somewhere in the last few hours.

By the time we got back we were really missing our old pool that we'd have jumped into and floated away our sweaty exhaustion from a grand Saturday oot and aboot, as our Canny friend would say.  But we enjoyed sitting on the front porch in the shade for a while to cool off.

Nice view from the rocking chairs. 


Now we are done playing some games and eating dinner and both of us looking forward to a good night's sleep.I am gonna be sore tomorrow!

Grateful for achy happiness,



Thursday, May 3, 2012

You Know You Need Rest When...


1.  On the way to take your man-child to Man Class, you have pillows in the back seat so you can steal a nap in a parking lot somewhere...


2.  The policewoman who pulls you over for speeding over roads on which everyone is going the same MPH, but you happened to be the one passing by when she flipped on her radar, asks you if you are on drugs because you look just, well, awful.  

Ah well, no matter!   I am achieving yet another first adventure.  I am writing a blog post from a McDonald's booth.   I have a wadded up red and white paper bag in which lies an empty French fry holder just to my right, alongside an icy swig of caffeine, and to my left is a lovely bouquet of white daisies.  I just reached out to see if they are real and sure enough!

I did bring along a book in case I feel like reading.  "The Biblical Flood and the Ice Epoch".   A VERY cool read, if I do say so.  But I'm pretty sure this will keep me busy.

I had half prepared a post about our annual winter ballet production.  But I sort of got carried away with the photos.   My long term blogging friends are well aware of this weakness I have for telling a story with images. So now I am trying to decide how to whittle down over a hundred photos to less than a dozen.   Eeny-meeny-miney-mo...

Instead, I will bludgeon you with a few photos of Michael, the man child.   You haven't seen a lot of him lately.  Actually, neither have I.   He's rather busy with adventures of is own.    Well, OK.   It's true I do see a lot of him, but it feels like I don't as I have to frequently share him with all his activities.   

He has taken to making some humorous videos.  Here is a self portrait while explaining 'hats' to the world.


Flipping out in gymnastics with some friends.


All dressed up and ready for both weddings and office cleaning.  What a versatile young man!


A mobile video.   This one on the subject of strange things that happen in parking lots while waiting for your mother.


At a Seder dinner we celebrated last month.


He asked for gift certificates to the local Home Improvement Center to begin his collection of quality tools.  He is very happy to have two nice chests (semi) full of tools with lifetime warranties.  Those are expensive so it didn't go as far as filling them, but he's got a great start.


Wish I could show you his belt ceremony from martial arts earlier this week, but I missed it.   I was sleeping in the car outside....

However, he is doing really well at it.   He is enjoying all sorts of violent things lately.   All that testosterone, you know.

This is not Michael.  It's one of his friends who kindly posed for some portraits for Michael's photography class while they were out and about.  But this is often how Michael looks; blended into the local surroundings, wearing lots of ammo -  and a huge grin.


OK.   I should be getting a text any minute now, giving me an estimated time of departure for going and picking him up.

Grateful for caffeine these days,


Monday, April 23, 2012

Anne Frank and Saturday Ups and Downs


After a lovely Friday of work, school, and more work, we went to town to try to get in as much office cleaning as we could before heading off to meet friends and see The Diary of Anne Frank, in which several of our friends are performing.

They did a fabulous job!  It was even better than the one we saw a couple of years ago, and had cool audience participation as though we were in a prison camp - with guards all around us.  They nabbed Josh, drug him out and shot him.   However, in his next life, he also became a prison guard for the rest of the play.   Lots of sniffles in the audience.   It is heart wrenching, knowing what evil man does to one another, but I was determined not to run any mascara, and I was thoroughly successful - lots of focus on chewing my delicious, if rubbery, mint chewing gum, during particularly touching moments.

My dashing young man and I went to Taco Bell afterwards, had a great time chowing down on a 12 pack of tacos and talking about the evening. 

Today was a day of ups and downs!

I was all set to break myself into posting pics again, but I actually broke my camera today. Yes, I had a good cry over it, too. Boohoo!

This was the first day Michael and I have stayed home all day in - I have no idea how long. It was strange, but just a bit like Heaven. The weather was wonderful. I baked and glazed a ham that had been oinking at me every time I opened the fridge.

And about the time we got around to doing anything else, I went outside with my board, my borrowed wood burner and a nice glass of iced tea and proceeded to torture the Bible verse plaque I mentioned.

Out on the front porch in a comfy rocking chair with birds singing madly all around.

Opening the kit...

Perusing the selection of tips...

Cool!  It has a soldering tip as well.  That will come in handy later, while working on Michael's Airsoft gun modifications.  I actually decide that the soldering tip will work the best for my lettering as well.

It's been a long time since I did any wood burning.  The reasons it has been a long time came flooding back.  Either I always have low-performance tools, or it takes a maddeningly longer time than I have the patience for.   But I was determined.  One letter, two letters...

And, in my exuberance, I flipped that board around - knocking my camera right off the table. In hind sight, if I'd just never gotten up to go check it, and just pretended it never happened, I'd have been a lot happier.

Michael arrived within moments to see what his mother was sobbing about and did his best to take the lens apart and fix it, but it was pretty munched.

No way around it, if the body of the camera is OK, I've got to get a new lens.  After this point, most of the photos are going to a bit poorer in quality, as my good camera is now merely collecting dust.

Anyhow, we had a great day despite that little tragedy.

We planted 3 blueberry bushes that I took with me when we left the farm, as well as some blackberry plants in pots I'd brought along.  Here are some of the first photos of our current digs.   Speaking of digs...  If at all possible, you must enlist help to dig into the red clay.

Here's the sweet little picket gate that is the passageway between the garden area and the yard.  Is this not adorable?   Not sure what that shrub is, but it's going to be some sort of fruit.  And the peonies smell wonderful.

Yes, the man child is hard at work as I bring out supplies and another shovel.  That's a very old apple tree on the other side of the fence, along the road.

I cried "Uncle!" and finally forked over for peat moss.  I think I have a tendency to  expect things from plants they are not ready to give.  "You have dirt, sun, rain, darn it.  I am not going to dump another 5 dollars because you want more than that!"   But after quite a few failed blueberries... I bought the bag.  This was about 10 bucks and will probably do about 5 bushes.  I've heard of people using an entire bag in a really big hole, and even planting bushes directly INTO the bags, but I asked a professional blueberry guy what he did, which was mix about half and half.  So that's what we are doing.

Right there in the hole with our stirrer.

OK, this one was not mixed well enough.  Plant was removed, earth mixed up, and plant replaced.

Then we mulched the three bushes and sat down, imagining sweet, juicy blueberries, which we will probably not get to eat, unless we dig them back up again, as this is not our home.  However, SOMEone SOMEday will have some nice berries.

We put in some tomato plants, Grape, Roma, and a Better Boy or something similar (lost the tag).

The owner, unbeknownst to us, also gave permission to another person to run some cattle on the nine acres and will be just beyond this fence.   He put in some electric fencing to keep them back but, in the interest of tomato safety, we will probably move the wires just a little bit further away from our succulent tomatoes.

I don't want to put much in the ground, as we don't know how long we'll be here, but I had no where else to put them and I can always dig them up again. All our friends are already overflowing with plants we gave away.

We had a great time cleaning out the loft in the barn, getting it ready for a hangout place and workout area for the guys.

Lovely view, lovely day.   Looking toward the mountains on the walk from the house to the barn.

The whole bottom of the barn is about like this.  Difficult to navigate.  Nothing of value, just stuff.  We hope to sort it, stack it neatly, and be able to utilize some space here and there.

Heading up to the old hay loft.

This is to be Michael's indoor hangout area and workout room.  But it needs some CPR first.   First thing is to remove all the poles that are stretching across the rafters, so we can get some head room.  They mostly used this for drying tobacco, many years ago, so they are all over the place.  I have no idea how old this hay is.

Looking down through the maze of rafters and tobacco poles.

I've already been moving some of the bales that could still be grasped.  Michael is putting off going and getting the rake and broom, surveying his domain.  Remember Mikka?  We had to send her away to a friend for a couple of months, but she's back with us.

That side over there is rotted through, as the roof is missing in a few places, but when clear, we'll know exactly where NOT to step.  Plus it will dry out more quickly and rot more slowly.

Boy, I wish I could move like a cat!

Handing tools up through the hay loft door.  Of course he jumps out.  Using the barn stairs and regular door would be so boring.

Coon poo?   It's everywhere.

That's better!

We can use this old hay for mulch when we need it, so we're keeping it near the loft door for now.  When it's gone, he'll have another 100 square feet of space to use.

One rotted area, and one broken rafter over here, means not a lot of use unless we decide to repair it.  there is enough old spare scrap wood laying around that we could do it, but the roof hole remains, so it would only be a temporary fix.  It would last beyond our stay here, however.

At this point my head is stuffy, I'm sneezing... what's going on????

Great Scott, Batman! I think I might be getting allergic to something. I could not believe how badly my sinus passages behaved while we worked in the barn! This is just not right. I don't DO allergies!

After enjoying the sound of a short rain on the metal roof of the barn, we headed back up to the house. Michael tried his hand at wood burning and worked on one of his Airsoft guns, getting ready for his next team outing.

I cut my first bouquet of peonies here, they smell amazing!

Grateful for ports in storms,

~ Faith


Friday, April 20, 2012

Broken Ribs


It's a beautiful, sunny, Friday morning!

Taking a little break before fixing breakfast to try to build up my blog habit.

Last night I ended up finding some stolen moments to work on a project I've wanted to do for some time, which is begin creating Bible verses to hang up on my walls. The one that I chose to begin with was Exodus 34:6-7. At that point God wanted Moses to truly know what He called Himself.

If it was that important, I think I ought to know it and proclaim it as God did.

It's sometimes referred to as the 13 attributes of God. But actually, God was proclaiming His own name.

So I spent some time with a friend and her computer set up, since all my stuff is in storage, and worked up some templates to transfer onto a 1x10 board. Last night, while waiting for Michael, I listened to some Christian teaching on the radio and copied it twice onto the board, one for us and one for my friend.

It's too small to router, sadly. I'm out of practice on planning out things like this, so instead I borrowed her wood burner. I hope to get that done this weekend. I've got to get my photography habit going again so I can share it. I like pictures and fewer words.

As an aside, I fell a few weeks ago and busted my ribs. Wouldn't you know, it was right on an office cleaning day. That was fun. Not.

I keep re-breaking them, but it's getting less each time. Wish I could lay around while they heal, but instead I will focus on the fact that every new break simply makes them stronger! Doot-do-do-doot--- (Insert Rocky theme here, but for Pete's sake, don't dance.)

OK, I'm off to work. Ask me how I'm going to get in 10 hours of work, a play at the college theater, a martial arts class, and regular stuff all in one day. No, don't ask. I have no idea.

Sumpthins gotta give, sumpthins gotta give, sumpthins gotta give...

~ Faith


Thursday, April 19, 2012

Pheonix Rising?

Well, maybe not. I think that's rather pagan.

I will be extremely surprised if anyone catches this post - I confess to having abandoned my posts for a year now.


In this year, the changes have been great. Not great, as in swell, but great as in massive!

It took 4 years, but I am now officially single. My attorney said he'd never seen a case like mine and probably never would again. It took a very long time and there were a whole lot of crazy things that happened, but it was finally finished in March of this year. Whew!

Our beloved home and farm are gone. We are moving from one house sitting job to another. What a challenge!

I work a lot to provide for Michael and I, so our lifestyle has been altered considerably. Michael works a lot as well.

But I have learned a lot of things and am grateful for the chance to continue learning and seeing what God will be doing in our lives.

I have no photos at this time and I'm having a tough time with figuring out how to get things done when we don't quite know where any of our stuff is, or when we'll be in one place to the next, so I've not taken many photos lately.

But we are in a sweet little old house right now on 9 acres. I will write more about the challenges of this little spot, as well as the wonderful things about it later.

Michael is now almost 5 foot 11! LOL What a man he is, and such a blessing to me. He turned 16 a couple of weeks ago and is preparing to go get his license. I am looking forward to being able to sit in the passenger seat and do tasks during his driving time to and from town, which takes about 20 minutes each way.

I will see if I can get moving on the blog. I have so much to do, so much I am considering and praying about and need to focus on. It will be good to be able to share it with others, for encouragement, as well as for feedback.

Is anybody out there? LOL

Off to gel the dashing young man's hair before we are off to town for his "man class" and I find something with which to occupy myself.

Still listening to birdsong and smiling because of it,

~ Faith


Sunday, March 6, 2011

Hey all!


So sorry about the lack of updates.

In all honesty, I've been too busy scrambling to find ways to make ends meet. My husband has completely stopped supporting us and there is simply not enough money to survive.

I'm saying that with a smile, because we've been watching the Lord provide for us on a day by day basis. Things are really hard, but we have been blessed beyond all ability to even count the ways!

Nuts and bolts of it is that Michael is having to work for his own food and clothing, right alongside me, and he has no anger or bitterness. We talk about our love for for my husband and pray for him daily. It's not a mushy kind of love, but we care about his future. We may not be able to depend upon him, but we can surely depend upon our Lord!

I have no idea what will happen to us here, but I know that it is good.

Not much has been going on here on the farm, as it takes money to do things - most of you are quite aware of that fact. But we are going to do our best to try to find a way to do another garden for canning. As the world's economy crumbles and hyperinflation is being discussed in more and more sure terms, it would be irresponsible of me not to put all we have into trying to provide food for ourselves.

As it is, we walk out of the grocery store with bare essentials in two bags and it's still 40 dollars. Ouch! I keep looking at all the yards filled with decorative plants, and thinking that every home owner ought to be pulling them out and planting food-bearing trees, bushes, and gardens.

We'll do our best. We've been getting as many cuttings from as many places as possible. I recommend we all do the same. Raise your own food plants, and raise enough to give away to all your friends. Buying plants is too expensive. In this way we can all help provide for one another.

Our power bill alone last month was half of all our income. 'Nother ouch! I bet lots of you experienced that one.

We are continually amazed by the hand of our Father, and our lives are filled with the things money can't buy. I hope you are all doing as well. :o)

This post is not thought through really well, just hurried, as we get ready to head out and work, so if it's disjointed, now you know why. :o)

I'm sorry I have not been around to your blogs in a long time. I miss you and the wisdom, knowledge, fun and friendship that provided. I've not given up on blogging, but it's going to have to wait for now.

I may have some fig tree seedlings to give away soon. If you are interested in getting one, let me know. I've put in hundreds for trial purposes. If they've taken, I don't want them to go to waste.

May the Lord bless you!