Saturday, July 31, 2010

Market Day - July 31st

Red onions and eggplant - Cedar Rock Farm
1 dozen pastured eggs and green peppers - S & L Farm
Okra and sprite melons - Cloverfields Farm
Heirloom persimmon tomatoes - Edible Earthscapes

Zinnias from Blue Dragonfly Cut Flowers

Friday, July 30, 2010

Your blue might be gray, your less might be more
Your window to the world might be your own
front door
Your shiniest day might come in the middle of the night...

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Teaching Little Hands

My Mom giving Ashleigh knitting instruction

Our home has three generations under one roof.  It can be interesting at times.  Raising young kids while  moving into a support role for an aging parent.  But the blessings of having a multi-generational home have greatly outweighed any of the bumps in the road.   

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Plan B

Lest you think we eat local and organic all the time...

Last night, dinner was an EPIC FAIL of massive porportions!  I haven't had something go SO wrong in the kitchen since, I don't remember when!  This was worse than the lopsided, crumbling, held together with icing confetti cake I made when we were first married.  How Hawaiin mini-meatloaves came out looking like Alpo, is beyond me.

So last night, our cats ate $5/lb local, grass-fed beef.  And we ate $5 pizza from Little Caesars.  Pizza Pizza!

Monday, July 26, 2010

Our New Dishwasher - Finally!

It has been well over a year since our old dishwasher died.  I remember the day because it happened just as we finished paying off our HELOC and started building our 3 - 6 months emergency fund per Dave Ramsey's babysteps.  Initially, we were going to have our LG repaired.  But learned NO ONE in our area even serviced LGs!  Bummer! 

Instead of replacing the dishwasher right away, we decided to wait until we reached our emergency fund goal.  While saving to reach our goal, Dave lost his job.  A new dishwasher quickly fell to the bottom of our list of priorities!  We continued to set money aside even during Dave's unemployment, eventually reaching and exceeding the initial savings goal we had set.  

We managed to get through most of Dave's unemployment and some scary moments (Dave's surgery) without touching our emergency fund.  That was until our heating unit died last November.  Replacing the heating unit pretty much drained our emergency fund.  So we've spent the past months rebuilding the fund. 

Thankfully Dave found a job back in January (and it's still the job of our prayers!).  Our emergency fund is back in place and FINALLY - we got a new Bosch dishwasher!  I know we're all yearning for the simple life, but I'm loving the convenience of having a dishwasher again :)  


Sunday, July 25, 2010

Market Day - July 24th

Last week was all about the veggies, this week is heavy on the meats!

1lb grass-fed beef - Cohen Farm
1lb pastured pork sausage - Coon Rock Farm
1 dozen pastued eggs - S & L Farm
1 bag stone ground grits - Carolina Grits & Co.

And Limelight Hydrangea - Blue Dragonfly Cut Flowers

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Stress Relief - Working Mommy Wednesday

This week and last, have been particularly busy at work.  It's one of those times that makes me re-read my "note to self" :)  As a working mom, it's important to not let the stress of work invade the peace of our home.  A few of the ways I de-stress:

Are you having a LAUGH?

Our three kids certainly provide comic relief at times.  For some good laughs, I also turn to my favorite British comedy series, Keeping Up Appearances.  Even though I've seen most of the episodes, I still get quite a laugh out of Hyacinth Bucket (that's Bouquet) and her candlelight suppers!


Whether its trying a new recipe in the kitchen, painting a trash to treasure find, creating a new dining room table centerpiece or arranging fresh flowers, getting the creative juices flowing is a big stress reliever for me.  I love being creative and find great joy in bringing touches of beauty to our home.  Taking the time to engage in creative pursuits calms my spirit and actually helps me to focus on less desirable homecaring tasks.  When I've given myself time for something enjoyable, it much easier to conquer the mountain of laundry waiting to be put away!

Watching my GARDEN grow

I still have a lot to learn about gardening.  But my small, fledgling attempts at a square foot garden this year has provided an enjoyable outlet - and a few veggies! 


Even on the worst of days, taking time to reflect on all that I have to be grateful for can help put me in a better state of mind.

Hyacinth Bucket Image Credit



A Walk Around Lake Lynn

Lake Lynn

This past weekend, Dave's Mom came up to visit along with her dog Rocky.  The kids thought it would be fun to take Grandma and Rocky for a walk at the park.

It was a hot afternoon, so Rocky decided to cool of by taking a dip in the lake.

Rocky going for a swim.

Grandma and Ashleigh looking on.

We saw plenty of ducks and geese by the lake.

And turtles

The bridge going around the lake

A view of the lake

After our hot 2 mile walk around the lake, we cooled off with some ice cream from Goodberry's!

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Homekeepers Journal - July 20th

Please visit Sylvia at Christian HomeKeeper Network to read what's going on with other Home Keepers around blogland!

This week’s Homekeeper’s Journal is all about Beginnings ……..

Something new I would like to attempt in my kitchen ……….. Canning tomatoes!  After reading numerous blogs, websites and checking The Ball book out from our library, I think I'm ready to give canning a try.  My plan is to start small and simple, buying a few pounds of tomatoes each week from our farmers market and doing jars of crushed tomatoes.  I already have the jars (thanks to Dave finding boxes of canning jars put out by the curb in our neighborhood last year) and a large stock pot.  I just need to buy lids and rings (which I will also use as a modified rack in the bottom of the pot) and jar tongs.

When the newness wears off a relationship you find ………. The true depth of the friendship.  Yesterday evening, I was surprised by a call from the mother of a little girl Ashleigh grew really close to last year in first grade.  Their family moved back to their home state before the school year ended, leaving Ashleigh without her bestest bud. Well, they are moving back to North Carolina this week and would like to get together once they've gotten settled in!  Even though the girls won't be going to the same school this year, we look forward to getting together whenever possible.

The new school year starts around here on ……. August 25th for Ashleigh (2nd grade) and Clayton's staggered entry Kindergarten start date is August 27th.  I still have to write a letter to Clayton's preschool informing them of his last day.  I'm dragging my feet as if it will stop the fact I will have yet another baby going off to big school!  We have also been working with our county's preschool services regarding speech therapy for Reed.  They have suggested we enroll him in a part-day early learning program at one of the local public schools.  Dave and I are still discerning if the program is the right direction for Reed or if we should consider private speech services.  We would love your prayers as we consider the matter.

Even though the start of school signifies a change of season to cooler weather, fall festivals, football games, pumpkins, the state fair, my birthday!  I so treasure the casualness of our summers.  When the only schedule we have to keep is our own! 

I need to start …….. My seeds for my Fall garden!  I'm planning on growing broccoli, kale, spinach and chard, all plants that do well in the cool fall temperatures here.  I've already constructed another garden square using salvaged bricks near the existing garden.  Just need to get going on the soil mix and the seeds.  I also have several "trash to treasure" finds waiting to be primed and painted! 

God’s mercies are new every morning so ……….. I need to ask Him each day for my daily bread.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Weekend Yard Sale Finds

Good morning!  Time to share my yard sale finds from the weekend

Bought 3 pieces of Southern Living Gallery dinnerware and the small shelf with hooks above for $2.50 from a charity yard sale.

A large clam shell from an estate sale - $2. 

The clam shell is currently occupying the space on the mint green stand where my framed star fish was.  The star fish apparently disappeared and no one seems to know where it went.  According to Ashleigh and Clayton, it was last seen being hurled through the air by Reed...hmmm...

Cherub plaque - $1.  This will probably be used in an outdoors/garden project.

Two storage bins - $1 each

And this pink blazer for $2.

Next weekend, Dave and I will be taking a break from yard sales.  We are finally replacing our broken dishwasher and will be impatiently waiting around for our new Bosch dishwasher to be delivered and installed!  It will probably take up our entire day, but after a year of being without a dishwasher, it is worth it!

Thanks for stopping by!

I'm sharing these yard sale finds with:

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Market Day - July 17th

Yellow and patty pan squash - Cedar Rock Farm
Eggplant, potatoes, okra and (FREE!) sprite melon - Cloverfields Farm
Round zucchini - Piedmont Biofarm
Rainbow chard - Kellam-Wyatt Farm
Local honey - The Pleasant Bee
Handmade goat's milk soap - Moondance Soaps
Fresh cut flowers - Blue Dragonfly Cut Flowers

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Good Boys - Garden Update

My first two Better Boy tomatoes!

My Better Boy tomatoes finally decided to turn red!  Along with the Better Boys, we've been picking plenty grape tomatoes from our little garden.  My zucchini plant was striken down with stalk rot and the cucumbers appear to be done.  But my green pepper and okra plants that were lost in the craziness of the tomatoes, seem to be holding their own. 

I'm thinking ahead now to the Fall, and a garden of broccoli, kale, spinach and chard. 

So, how is your garden growing these days?

Monday, July 12, 2010

Vietri Bowl

Hope everyone had a wonderful weekend!  I just have two yard sale finds to share this morning.  The first is this beautiful turquoise Vietri bowl.  The picture does not fully do this bowl justice.  As the color is just so lovely.  I paid $2 for the bowl.

I also picked up this decorative fireplace screen for $2.  I had been wanting a more decorative screen for our fireplace for awhile now.  I always kept an eye out for a clearanced one at Target, but never found one in my price range.  So I was beyond thrilled to find this screen for just $2!  Oh, the beauty of yard sales!

Thanks for stopping by!

I'm sharing these yard sale finds with:

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Market Day - July 10th

1 dozen pastured eggs - Kellam-Wyatt Farm
1lb grass-fed beef - Cohen Farm
1lb pastured pork sausage - Coon Rock Farm
Round zucchini - Piedmont Biofarm
Potatoes, yellow squash and green peppers - Cloverfields Farm

Friday, July 9, 2010

Frugal Fashionista - For the Office

Shopping secondhand is not only how I save money on clothes for the kids, but also how I save on clothes for myself.  Our office has a business casual dress policy with casual Fridays.  So largely by thrifting, I've been able to find items appropriate for work.

Please excuse my one-handed photography! 

Blue v-neck top (Wet Seal) -  $0 (trash to treasure)
Black tank - $0 (trash to treasure)
Black & White floral skirt - $3.39 (Goodwill)
Shoes (Maripe) - $3.39 (Goodwill)

Black tank - $3.39 (Goodwill)
Cream & Black skirt (GAP) - $3.50 (church thrift store)

One of my favorite dresses!
Black & white sleeveless A-line dress - $4.59 (Goodwill)

Black pinstripe sleeveless A-line mini dress (XOXO) - $4.59 (Goodwill)

Cream top with ribbon (Express) - $3.39 (Goodwill)
Black floral skirt (The Limited) - $3.39 (Goodwill)

Hot pink tee (GAP) -  $1 (church yard sale)
White skirt with large floral print (Casual Corner) - $3.39 (Goodwill)

Light green stretch tank (GAP) - $3.39 (Goodwill)
White skirt (Old Navy) - $3.39 (Goodwill)

Same Old Navy skirt, this time with an Aeropostale polo - $3.39 (Goodwill)

Dressing for work doesn't have to cost a fortune!

Thanks for stopping by!

I'm sharing my frugal office fashions with: