Saturday, November 30, 2013

Happy 9th Birthday Elizabeth!

Today our youngest turns 9 years old.  It is hard to believe that she is growing up so quickly.
Enjoy some memories with me! Incidentally, the computer put the pictures in randomly, rather than chronologically.

Elizabeth has a great relationship with all her brothers.  She likes to gently tease and they take good care of her.

Christmas 2006

Christmas 2007
We have a family tradition of taking a picture of all the children before Christmas to put in the Christmas letter.

Elizabeth loves babies!  She finds any that are around and holds them.  They seem to enjoy being held by her too!

Elizabeth is an active young girl and loves adventure with the older children.    

Four years ago, our family discovered speech and debate.  After watching at our first tournament, Elizabeth decided that she wanted to participate also.  She has done speech every year since then.

Elizabeth takes good care of the local animals. She is currently on cat feeding duty and she gathers the chicken eggs and locks them up for the night.

She likes to play in the mud.  She is about 4 here, but I still find her playing in the dirt frequently.

Elizabeth is an amazing cook.  She started when she was very young. Now she bakes and cooks like a champ.

Elizabeth was included in her first kickball game when she was four months.  We put the kids to work young! (PS This picture was staged!  We really don't give three year olds hatchets!)

She does like to dress up and be a girlie girl.

She and Paul have a special bond.  She is his work partner.  He has taught her how to solder and many other practical skills.

I really enjoy spending time with her!

Here was the Autumn birthday party from last year.  We sure miss my sister's family at gatherings.  They now live in the Philippines.

We went down to the lake and experienced Hurricane Sandy.  Elizabeth found this to be a memorable moment.  It was SOOO windy!

She has become a real farm girl already!

She still has her goofy little girl moments that we all enjoy!

Elizabeth and T-Bob

Elizabeth and her dear Daddy
Elizabeth is blessed to grow up with lots of brothers and sisters  and a Dad and Mom who love her very much!

The Girl Cousins.
What a blessing to have family!

Friday, November 29, 2013

ANOTHER 10 things I am thankful for

A little bit late, because we were so busy trying to get everything ready for our Thanksgiving guests.
But still Thankful!

1. I am thankful for my new kitchen.  When we moved in it was a very old and run down farm kitchen.  We gutted it and gave it a total makeover.  I really like it now!  It is so pretty and fairly functional!

2. I was very happy to get the water turned on in the kitchen peninsula.  My DH worked late hours to get it running before all our company.  Michelle was so happy to have a sink her height.  Elizabeth will have to wait to grow into it.

3. I really like the family room.  It is so cozy and comfy.  We spend most of our time there when we are not eating.  I am so thankful to have a place to hang out and visit as well as a place for our guests to use their electronic devices (haha)!

Table set up in the dining room

Table set up in the dining room
4. I am thankful for places to set up tables for company.  We had 19 people at our Thanksgiving table.  We had room for more and without being squished or uncomfortable.   I am THankful we still have space for guests!

5. I am thankful for a house that is light and airy and makes you feel at home.  I get claustrophobic when I can't see out.  I never have that problem in this house.  You can always see out in at least two directions.  I love that!

6. I am thankful that we not only have a really nice barn, but also a shop and garage.  This gives my DH space to store his things as well.  I can't wait until we are all settled and can enjoy our time here even more.

7. Peaceful.... That is how it feels to live here.  I am thankful for that feeling!  It just feels good and as the boxes get emptied and moved out that feeling just keeps getting better!

8. I am thankful that the farm is such a fun place for kids to run and play!  There is space to move and things to do.  That is so much better than it was in the yard of the old house.  Especially, when the children are here all the time, it is nice for everyone to have a reason to go outside, even if it is just to take care of the critters!

9. I am thankful that the farm is a great place to do a photo shoot!  The two younger girls have spent a lot of time lately taking pictures of Michelle wearing bows.  I guess I won't be having to have Michelle's Senior Pictures taken. They have done a pretty amazing job of that themselves!

10.  I am so thankful that the farm is close to family and friends!
It is a little further than the old house, but it is close enough that you really don't have to think about going!  We enjoy having people over and it is a delight to have more space to work with, especially outdoors!

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

10 MORE things that I am thankful for on the Farm

Here are 10 more things I am thankful for here on the farm...


1. I am thankful that the quality of our eggs has gone up a couple more notches with the chickens out scratching now.  Now the yolks are amazingly orange, and oh so yummy!!

2. I am thankful that my guys can go out hunting back in the woods.  Yesterday, Paul took T-Bob out before church.  They saw a lot of deer tracks and some rabbits, but the only thing they got was cold. They didn't see any deer.

The Spring

If you look carefully,  you can see the water

3.  I am happy we have a spring on the property.  I had read about springs, but never really saw one in real life.  There is a bunch of brush and grass growing around it as it is too wet to mow in that area.  If you look carefully into the grass you see the top of the water.  Someday we will test the quality of it and run a pipe deeper down into the aquifer that we live on.  It is something to be thankful for!

4.  I am very thankful for my granite countertops!  It is so easy to take care of and so pretty.  I also like the fact that they are at a higher height.  It is so nice to be able to chop vegetables on a counter top that is the right height and doesn't give one a backache from bending over.  Thank-you to my DH for designing this peninsula.

5.  I am thankful for our fireplace.  It is able to burn both gas or logs.  It gives a nice cozy feel to the living room.  It gives it a focal point that makes the room more comfortable.

6.  I am thankful for our fruit trees.  At the old house, we had so little room for fruit trees, and here we have so much space for lots of fruit trees.  We were so blessed to find them on sale this fall.  Thank-you Lord!

7.  I am thankful for all the wildlife around.  Lots of birds, garter snakes, opossums, and different kinds of squirrels are around all the time.  It gives the farm so much vigor!

8.  I am thankful we have a paved driveway.  It gives the children a place to ride their bikes, and run.  It will also be a lot easier to clean the snow off, rather than a gravel lane.

9.  I am thankful that the farm came with barn cats.  They keep the wildlife down in the barn (aka mice and rats).  I really don't like mice!  Anything that gets rid of them is good with me.

10.  I am thankful for our fields and soon to be pastures.  I will be happy to see steers out there this summer, wandering and munching the grass.

Stay tuned for some more things I am thankful for tomorrow!

Monday, November 25, 2013

10 things I am Thankful for on the Farm

The first part of this week I am going to give you a list of the different things I have found to be especially thankful for, here on the farm.  Here are the first ten things....


 1. Having the master bedroom on the first floor.  You don't think I am going to show you the inside, do you?  We set up the bed and unpacked our clothes, but we haven't gotten much farther since then.  There are still LOTS of boxes to be processed in there! Trying to get the public areas done first.  Thanksgiving is only 3 days away!

The family room bookshelves  

The living room bookshelf wall.
 2.  I LOVE the way the bookshelves from the old house fit in here at the farm.  The Boss was able to get these in to the inch without adjusting them.  He just pulled the right combination of units.  They match very nicely to the floor and wall covers,  They look great.  I still have a bit of unpacking to do, but there is light at the end of the tunnel.  I am thankful for my bookshelves, and my books ( That goes without saying!).

3.  I love all the windows! It is so nice to be able to look out and see so much nature and beauty.  I was getting tired of so many cars at the old house.  It is enjoyable to sit and look out the window here!  It also makes the house seem bright and airy!  We have neighbors, but they are not very visible with all the trees and distance.

4.  I am thankful for my old-fashioned cold cellar!  It is under the front porch and is a lovely cool temperature.  Perfect for storing apples, potatoes, beets, canned goods as well as a place for our freezer.  I am also thankful for the freezers being full of grass-fed beef!  Not sure where we will put the deer if the guys get one.  I will worry about that later.

5.  I am thankful for our storage area up on the third floor/attic.  I am also thankful that all the beams and studs in the house are oak.  I have enough space to store all our books for now, without worrying about the beams sagging.

6.  I am thankful for our barn.  It is so pretty to look at.  It smells like hay.  It has room for Paul to set up a workshop and for the kids to set up pingpong tables, etc.  It has the run-in on the back and it is just a very neat barn!

My office

My waiting room.

7.  I am thankful for my new office.  My office has always been in the basement before.  I didn't mind, but it is so nice to have a room with a view!  I now can sit at my desk and look out at the pond, and chickens scratching and whatever other critters end up here.  I am looking forward to getting the office floor done so I can unpack and have it look nice.  I am thankful for patients that don't mind coming to see me in a room under construction!

8.  I am thankful for chickens being able to free range.  For whatever reason I like to see the chickens out and about in the field.  I may be strange, no doubt there, but it makes me happy to see them.

9.  I am thankful there is a gas well on our farm.  Our farm came with mineral rights and with the well, it means that we get free natural gas.  In Ohio, that means that the fact that the furnace is running as I sit and write this isn't costing us a dime!  We can heat the house, heat the water, dry the clothes and cook with natural gas for FREE.  That is definitely something to be thankful for.  These 'beautiful' tanks are hidden behind some trees and bushes so I don't have to look at them  unless I want to.

10.  I love the pond and I am very thankful for it!  It is constantly changing and it always reflects the light and the scenery.  It is a constant joy to behold.  The weather is cold (High of 23 F/ -8C) and the edges are freezing over.  Elizabeth was walking over the ice.  It didn't crack at all.  I was impressed at her ability to walk on water.

Tomorrow I will share ten more things I am thankful for here at the farm.