Thursday, May 21, 2015

Mother's Day "Mystery Baby" Revealed!

Introducing Rina Grace! She was 7 lbs, 6 oz, 20 inches long and drum roll......... SHE IS NOT A REDHEAD! So far it looks as though she does have some red highlights in her brown hair, but her coloring is different from Josiah and Hailey. I think this girl might be able to tan, like her mamma. As you can see by the following pictures, we are all simply in love with this little bundle of joy. Her name, "Rina"  (pronounced like "Tina" only with an "R"), means "Joyful Song" in Hebrew. She was worth the two weeks of pre-labor contractions leading up to her birth. After 7 years of infertility, I can hardly believe I have another daughter, even now a week and half after having her.

  I'm cherishing all the snuggle time that a newborn affords. Clinging to every minute. Probably spoiling her rotten in the process, but I can't help it, and frankly, I don't care if I am. My neck and back hurt because I can't stop looking down at her. She sleeps on my chest often. No, I'm not getting much done, but that is OK. This season goes so fast!
 Good thing I have such great helpers! Josiah and Hailey absolutely love their baby sister and are so helpful, as I knew they would be. Despite Josiah's initial disappointment over not getting a brother, he soon fell in love with the cuteness that is Rina, and holds her every chance he gets.
 Hailey can't wait for Rina to get big enough to sleep in her room in the crib. She even likes to help change diapers. The hardest part is to get the kids to leave her alone when Rina is napping. They always want to touch her or give her a kiss or something. They can't get enough of their little sis!
 Rina was just a few hours old in this picture. She is so much bigger than my other other, too, and has the cute chunky cheeks to prove it.
 Michael explaining the umbilical cord to Hailey.
 I love this pic of Michael and Rina.
 All the grandparents were able to make it up within 24 hours to see Rina. Mom was there with me through the birth. It was a difficult birth. I was really glad I was in the hospital. I was having extremely painful contractions and feeling myself having to push when I was only dilated to 3 cm. They had to give me an epidural to get me to relax enough to be able to let my cervix dilate all the way. When I stopped having contractions, they gave me medicine to get them going again, and I was finally able to get to a 10 cm. I've never been so happy to see the anesthesiologist in my life. I think I might have promised him my left kidney as a thank you, should he ever need it ;)
 Michael's folks made it up later that day and spelled my folks from watching our older two. It was nice having so much help!
 Dad, Diana and my SIL, Sonya, bombed into town to see Rina that night. I received Dad's official approval ;)
 My dad holding Rina's hand. When she gets older, he'll tease her with his stump just like he does with all his grandkids, saying things like "If you pick your nose, this is what will happen to you", and things like that.
 Nana holding Rina. I'm so glad they were able to come up even though it was a really long drive for them.
 My SIL, Sonya, was also able to come up with them. It was great to see her!
 Larry Pop was a gem when it came to watching the kids at midnight when my water broke on Mother's Day. He also has been super helpful taking my older kids to the homeschool sports program for me last week and this week. So appreciated!
 Lovin' on Rina the day we got home from the hospital.
 The definition of "Precious"!
Aunt Stacie had to wait 5 days before she got to see Rina. She spent last weekend with me while Michael was at drill. She and all her kids and my kids helped clean the house, make meals and mow the lawn, and of course... held Rina. 
 Stacie, with my niece, Jessica, and nephew, Marcus, getting to know Rina.
 Stacie was amazed at how long Rina could hold up her head. She was lifting her head a few hours after she was born. I guess all that exercise in the womb paid off! Love those bright eyes.
Rina is very responsive and is already smiling and starting to coo a bit, even when she is awake. She and I are getting lots of snuggle time in between feedings. I adore this little girl! Can't get enough of her. She truly is my joyful song! She loves it when I sing to her. Despite our doubts of having a child in our 40s, we can't imagine life without her now. I feel so blessed that God would chose our family to love and raise this precious daughter for His glory. 

As I have said to all my children (inserting their own name), "There is only one Rina, and we got her!"

God Bless,

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Mission Rd Homestead 2015 April/May Happenings

Still no baby, but by the time this posts, who knows... Only 10 days until official due date. Hoping for sooner than that though. Can't wait to hold the baby outside my body! The kids are beside themselves. The suspense is killing them!

The first pic I wanted to share with you in this catch up post is this fiddle that was given to me by my Great Aunt LaVern. It was my great grandfather Hewitt's. We know that it is at least 100 years old. For being in storage for at least 50 years it is in pretty good shape. It costs more to repair than it is worth, but I'm going to bite the bullet and do it because I just think it would be too cool to play the same violin my great-grandpa played. After I get it restored, I plan on doing a blog post with before and after pics. 

Michael has been working hard on getting our sheds sanded, painted and the dirt dug out around the bases so they will last us many more years to come. This is a before shot. You can see the soil and plants all heaped up onto the wood which was starting to rot.

This is after. I love the way he tied in the red from the other shed into the trim. Makes it all flow better. The recycled wooden battery boxes make great planters for strawberries.
Found these cute bees at Grocery Outlet and thought they went well with Mission Rd Homestead's theme.
Michael made this awesome lean-to between the sheds to keep our wood nice and dry. Very handy indeed.
 These recycled battery boxes are filled with growing strawberry plants since I took this pic.
 This was my birthday present from Michael. I've always wanted a weather vane!

Michael was gone for 2 1/2 weeks for annual training and as soon as he got back he helped the kids check the frames on the honey bee hive. We still need to get our other hive, hopefully next week.

 Hailey is looking at the bees on the hive tool. Both kids are learning to move a lot slower. Nobody has gotten stung since we first got them. They are all three loving the bees. I, however, keep my distance.

While Michael was at Annual Training at White Sands, New Mexico, both kids got extremely sick with strep throat. My awesome sister came to take care of me, despite her getting such a bad sore throat she ended up in the ER. She and the kids worked hard on weeding and mulching my blueberry patch while she was here after the kids started feeling better. It was wonderful having her help!
Josiah participated in our local Homeschool Association's Catapult Contest for the first time. He learned a lot. Great lesson in physics! Was proud of him for coming up with something and giving it a try, despite some design flaws.
This last week, Michael got to join us on a field trip to our local county museum. Michael is helping Hailey with a paper nine patch quilt block. It was great to have him along!

 This has got to be one of my favorite pics ever!
 Our docent was a retired school teacher and gave the kids some lessons on one room school house rules. It was really fun.
The only time I ever have pedicures is right before I'm ready to have a baby. I want my toes looking pretty when I'm pushing, by golly! My mom and friend, Jeni, and I splurged and got them painted. Mine are the toes with the yellow flower. It was so fun!

Josiah wanted to take a fun pregnancy photo. I thought he did a really good job with this one. I had Hailey 10 days early, so hoping this one decides to make an early appearance as well. Can't wait to know if it is a boy or a girl and most of all, find out what color of hair it has! Please pray for me as I try to wait patiently for God's timing, not my own.  Hopefully the next post you see will be of the Mystery Baby revealed!

God Bless, 

Monday, May 4, 2015

Easy Recipe for Pork Fried Rice Made From Scratch

Josiah has been combing the internet for more recipes he can make when it is his night to cook. It is a good lesson for him to search for recipes that we can adjust by using healthy ingredients that we already have on hand. This will be a handy skill for him to have in the future, especially when I have the new baby.

The key to making this recipe a quick one is to have rice already cooked (we cook large batches to freeze in two cup increments) and to have the eggs already scrambled. Another way to make this even faster is if you use the meat from the leftovers of a previously cooked pork roast. This recipe makes quite a bit, and the leftovers freeze well.

Easy Recipe for Pork Fried Rice Made From Scratch:

4 Tbl butter

Approx 3 cups of bite-sized cut pork meat

1 cup carrots, chopped

4 green onions, chopped

1/2 - 1 cup frozen peas

4 eggs, scrambled

8 cups cooked rice, (we use short-grained brown rice)

1/3 c soy sauce (we use Braggs Liquid Aminos)

1/2 tsp garlic powder (or two pressed fresh garlic cloves)

1/2 tsp ground ginger (or 1 1/2 tsp minced fresh ginger)

1. Melt butter in large pan and cook pork, carrot, green onion over med heat until pork is just cooked through.

2. Stir in cooked rice, scrambled egg, soy sauce, garlic and ginger into pork mixture. Cook until thoroughly heated.

This is a kid and company friendly meal! Enjoy!

God Bless,


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