29 June 2006

oh yeah

I forgot a few things since they don't have pictures.

Don't let the date on the previous post fool you. I just posted it this morning but I started it last week, which is why it has that date on it. And I forgot I also did 12 dehydrator trays of cherries. And Frugaldad and the Frugalkids helped a lot, too.

My sister-in-law and I have been raising broiler chickens and right before Father's Day we had them processed. I never managed to get any pictures taken this year. One of my hens went broody for the second time this year and finally decided to stop sitting on the nest. It's about time, she is a good layer.

I learned some things about buying money orders, and that I should have filed my birth certificate properly when my mother sent it to me years ago.

Someday soon the Frugal Farmhouse will be larger. We closed on a loan and now need to finalize our plans and pull permits and get someone here to dig a big hole.

I had another close call with a skunk. Sometime soon I will post both stories.

Frugalbaby has cut top teeth, has forgotten how to sleep through the night, and has started making sounds that actually sound like words. (My favorite is ay-uh-oo, which means "I love you.") She'll be nine months old tomorrow!

23 June 2006

Summer at the Farm

In the interest of time, here's a bunch of pictures. I had high hopes of getting them in the right order, and captioning them all, but since it's been a week since I uploaded them and saved this post as a draft, this will have to do. I am heading out of the country in a couple days and I still have a bunch of cherries to can, so I'd better get my behind out of this chair.

The short stories:
The Boise Hot Air Balloon Rally--we ride our bikes along the Boise River to a downtown park at
6 am and watch the balloons launch

We finally got a hold of someone to come cut our hay--it was taller than the kids. I have a pic of it baled, too, but not uploaded to blogger yet. We sold it already, too, which is nice.

I picked a couple gallons of strawberries from my little front-yard strawberry patch.

The next-door neighbor has 2 cherry trees and told us we could pick as many as we wanted. So we did. Twice. I've done 1 pie (probably one of the prettiest pies I've ever made, and it was dee-licious) 15 quarts of pie filling, 7 quarts of plain cherries, 12 dehydrator trays, and I still have a bunch to take care of.

A panoramic picture of the garden. Click on it to make it bigger.

And a hot-air balloon landed in our back yard. Well, not really, but just over the fence of our pasture.

See you later, alligator, after my first trip out of the good ol' U. S of A.

19 June 2006

Life is a Bowl of Cherries

I've been extremely busy. Here's a peek of part of the busyness.

10 June 2006

Same ol'

So I'm still tired, as always. I slept in three places last night--my bed, Frugalgirl2's bed, and the couch. Then I took all the kids to the biggest water fight in Idaho. Now this afternoon I was searching my hard drive for something I'm sure I saved and I found a copy of a really funny email I got once. Enjoy. And take a nap for me.

For a couple years I've been blaming it on lack of sleep,
not enough sunshine, too much pressure from my job, earwax buildup, poor blood or anything else I could think of.

But now I found out the real reason:

I'm tired because I'm overworked.

Here's why:. . .

The population of this country is 273 million.

140 million are retired.

That leaves 133 million to do the work.

There are 85 million in school.

Which leaves 48 million to do the work.

Of this there are 29 million employed by the federal

Leaving 19 million to do the work.

2.8 million are in the armed forces preoccupied with
killing Osama Bin-Laden.

Which leaves 16.2 million to do the work.

Take from that total the 14.8 million people who work
for state and city governments.

And that leaves 1.4 million to do the work.

At any given time there are 188,000 people in

Leaving 1,212,000 to do the work.

Now, there are 1,211,998 people in prisons.

That leaves just two people to do the work.

You and me.

And there you are sitting on your butt, at your
computer, reading jokes.

Nice. Real nice.

02 June 2006

The Birthday

On August 6, 2002 I went visiting teaching in the morning. I took Frugalboy and Frugalgirl 1 to my neighbor's house. When I picked them up and came home, Frugaldad was home. Which, for 11 am, was unusual. Turns out he had been laid off. If you've never been in that situation it's quite unnerving. We were confident he could find another job, but how quickly? Thankfully, we weren't in a dire financial situation. We hadn't been the best about saving money, but we had enough to pay off our current credit card bill (like we do every month anyway) and we were about 6 months ahead on the payments for our truck. Unemployment payments covered our mortgage. Our freezer and our pantry were full.

We have some friends who live in California with their own business, and for the first time ever, they happened to be in town the next week and we had them to dinner. Conversation turned to business and the guys started talking shop, and decided they had a pretty solid idea. Since the kids weren't in school yet, and Frugaldad didn't have to go to work, we decided to take a trip out there for a week or so and explore the options.

We drove to Sacramento in one day, and the kids whined the entire time. I think that neither one of them slept longer than 15 minutes the whole day. I had the worst migraine that night! My period was due that day, and I get menstrual migraines, so I popped some Aleve, and figured I was late due to stress. My friend joked to me that night that she was just waiting for me to tell her I was pregnant again, since Frugalgirl was already over 2 years old, and there are only 20 months between her and Frugalboy. It was past due for me to have another one! I told her that NO, we weren't trying, and I wasn't ready for another one yet. Looking back now, I think I had undiagnosed PPD after she was born and I wasn't ready for that again. Besides, who tries to get pregnant when they don't have a job or health insurance? Birth control was my friend, and we were very careful.

But careful as we were, even the best birth control isn't foolproof. Especially not when the Lord says it's time for another.

The entire week we were in California and my period didn't start, I started wondering if I could be pregnant. The area was really rural so I couldn't just run to the corner store and buy a pregnancy test, so I just waited. We got home on a Saturday night and I waited until Monday or maybe even Tuesday to go buy a test.

And it was positive.

But I wasn't too worried. Frugaldad had been interviewing. I knew that I still had a few weeks before I needed to get into the doctor, and I'd never been high-risk or had a miscarriage. He ended up with a job offer a few weeks later, which he took, and I got into the doctor before my first trimester was over.

Even though he had a job locally, we still wanted to go into business with our friends in California, but it was complicated, since we'd have to move out there. Real estate in their area was outrageous, and with the pregnancy, I'd need health insurance right away, and we had to sell our house here....there were so many things.

We eventually did put our house on the market when I was about 6 months along, but things were slow. We kept it on the market for a long time. Frugalgirl 2 was born on May 22, 2003. Developments in the business eventually made us glad that we hadn't moved out there. But our house was still up for sale. Frugaldad's brother let us know that a house down the street from them was about to go on the market. The owner had passed away and the widow was moving out. The day it went on the market, we got an offer on our house, and we moved here to The Frugal Farm.

Heavenly Father sent that sweet baby just at the right time, so that we didn't rush into a business decision. And we were able to move here, where there's lots of space to roam, and provide our kids with opportunities to work and learn.

A few things I will always remember about Frugalgirl 2's babyhood. She was always a fussy nurser. In the middle of the summer, if it was too hot, she'd go hours without eating. It was so frustrating! Then one day in the middle of winter, when she was almost 8 months old, she went on strike. She wouldn't nurse at all. And she wouldn't take a bottle, either. I pumped with my Avent Isis pump as much as I could, and supplemented a little with formula, and fed her with the only sippy cups she'd drink from. After a couple weeks, my supply was nearly gone, and she was so fussy from the formula. I decided to buy a double electric pump and pump regularly. So until her first birthday, I pumped 3 or 4 times a day and had enough to give her breast milk for all but one feeding. She ate solids well, which helped. Pumping all your baby's milk gives you an appreciation for the convenience of breastfeeding (plus it's practically free--I was spending $40 a month on formula, and only 25% of her milk was formula).

Once she started walking, she became the child who fell. I can't even count how many bloody noses and lips she had.

But she was my best potty trainer. When she was 22 months old we were done with diapers. I attribute it both to the fact that I had switched to cloth diapers when she was born, and I started early.

She says the funniest things, and we love her. Frugaldad loves it when she climbs into our bed in the night and sleeps back to back with him. He calls her his "sleeping buddy." Just this morning after she put down her milk cup, she said "Thank you, Mommy, for making delicious food."

She decided she wanted a Barbie cake, but I didn't have time to drive all the way into town and find one of those cake-pick Barbie things, so I hit the local discount store and I got a little doll instead. And here is how the cake turned out.

I'm afraid I'm one of those moms. Some day I will pull all of the pictures off the old hard drive and devote an entire blog entry to cakes.

Happy Birthday, Frugalgirl!