Wednesday, January 31, 2018

Homestead Happenings - March 2017

March started out so normal for us on the homestead. Michael was trimming sheep hooves.

 We were excited to try raising another batch of chicks (the year before they were all eaten by a fox)
 Our "Pink of Perfection" was growing like a weed and bringing us so much joy.
 We had our first lambs born -twins. Their mother, Pixie, was such a good mom to her lambs.
We where baking up a storm, as usual. 

Then the fire happened on March 14th when the heat lamp got knocked over and caught the chicks bedding on fire. It was such surreal moment watching it burn. See "Sifted But Not Forsaken" post for that story.

 What was once our living room/dining room.

 We spent the night with my mom, but then friends lent us their travel trailer to camp in, understanding that we needed to be living on our property to take care of our animals since we were right in the middle of lambing season. Also, Arne's brought in a port-a-potty for us to use, free of charge. I didn't have to clean a toilet for months!

 So many friends rallied around us during those first few days in particular. Here are two of my besties, Cora and Dorene, who brought us some "essentials" like towels and my favorite tea. They made me laugh, which was truly the best medicine.
We had these little guys to watch and cheer us up. Buff and Tuff were adorable black lambs. 

 A few days after that, Michael's niece, Crystal, came to visit with her three sons. They loved the lambs!

 It was raining really hard when Crystal and the boys were visiting. We didn't have the shop set up yet as a living space, but we quickly figured out how to at least eat in there as a family.
 Crystal rescued us that night by inviting us to to swim at their hotel. Gave us all something fun to do and kept everyone busy and out of the mud.

 They visited us in the trailer one more time before they left the next day. Love these guys. Wish they didn't live so far away.

 The next weekend, a bunch of friends came over and worked at cleaning, salvaging and getting the shop insulated and things moved around so we could start living in there during the day.
What a blessing to have such good friends!
And family! Michael's folks came up to help as well.

Our pastor and his wife took a little spin around the shop floor during the work party. They are so cute!

Fluff, another black lamb, was born that weekend in the middle of a rainstorm.

 While everyone was working hard on the homestead, I slipped away for a much needed break (and shopping trip to the big city for some much needed and hard to find items. Stacie and I met up with one of her dearest friends who flew down from Alaska for the weekend. Rachel, Stacie, Rina and I had a wonderful weekend of talking, eating, shopping, and did I mention talking? Such a needed mental break from the constant stress of decision making for me. It was also a time when they let me really grieve, something I hadn't had time to really do. It was a huge blessing!
 Josiah was able to go to a paint ball camp with his cousin and one of his friends at Camp Morrow. It was a much needed break for him as well. I'm so glad he was able to go. He had a blast!
 It was fun for us to come back home to see the new lamb, Fluff! What a cutie pie. We had many visitors during spring break including the Lenardson family and my sister and her kids. Everyone brought things that we needed and offered their support.

 Two weeks after the fire, we had a dry kitchen set up in the shop. my running water was an igloo container. But we had a borrowed stove and fridge and we kept the food mostly in tubs as we fought the mice for 8 months while we lived in the shop. Don't mind the grease stains on the floor, it is a shop after all, ha ha.
Stacie helped me get a good deal on this large carpet remnant that really helped cozy up the place. 
Not everyone gets a Harley D. and a T-Bucket in their living quarters ;) Almost everything you see was donated to us by family and friends and we are using all of it in our new house now. 
Rina got really comfortable going up and down these steps. Again, so grateful to our friends, Tiffany and Don, for letting us use their trailer until we were able to buy our own. We only used the trailer for sleeping and showering. The rest of the time we were in the shop where I homeschooled and did all my cooking.

 These little guys just cheered us up so much. Our old burned out house was on the property until the middle of May. We had to smell it and look at it constantly. The lambs would draw our eyes past the burned out house because we couldn't resist their cuteness and adorable antics.

While my sister was up, we took a girls trip to the nearest city and Hailey got her ears pierced. She loves wearing earrings! She enjoyed getting to do it when her cousins were there.

The day after the house burned down we started the arduous, overwhelming task of inventorying all our belongings. It was not fun and an extremely painful process where we had to be full on confronted with all we had lost. There were several rooms we had to do completely from memory as they had been destroyed. I'm telling everyone to take a picture of all the rooms in their house, and even open drawers and closets and snap pictures, as well as take pictures of open cupboards. Then store them at someone else's house or in The Cloud. Here is a picture of my friend, Cora, helping me inventory over 700 books. It was a huge process, and one that she even did in the rain, with a smile on her face. It was our friends, family and even strangers who made this process bearable. We're so thankful!

 That wraps up March of 2017. I will do a separate post on all the "God Smiles" that occurred during those first few months. We were truly sifted but not forsaken. God had us in the palm of His hand and in the shadow of His wing in ways we couldn't fathom. He is so good!

God Bless,

Sunday, January 28, 2018

Narnia Unit Study 2016-17: Prince Caspian

For Prince Caspian we dressed in Spanish-style medieval outfits. I loved seeing what everyone came up with!

Each family came up with a design for their own coat of arms that they felt best represented their family. 
 Naomi showed us a sundial she made and explained how it worked. 

Alli taught us about hedgehogs. What a cute drawing!

 Hailey's presentation was on dwarfism. She explained the different types of dwarfism and how genetic factors can cause it. We had permission from family friends to use their family portrait as an example. Michael's high school friend and his family were on the TV reality show called Big People, Little World. It was so exciting to see them on the show!
Gracia's presentation was on eagles.

 Josiah instructed us on "Heraldry". What the different parts of a coat of arms meant, and again history and purpose thereof. 
 Here is an example of a coat-of-arms,whose parts are labeled and he explained what each was for.
We ended our time together with fried fish, a mixture of baked root veggies, boiled eggs, oatcakes, apple pie and salad-on-a-stick. It was all very scrumptious!

Of course we had to throw in one picture of our little mascot, Rina. 


 Josiah made his own armor out of some leftover roofing tin Michael had lying around. He laced up the sides. He discovered how hard it is to move in them and why they have so many pieces. He could barely move in his!
Naomi started us out with a presentation on squirrels.

Gracia taught us all about last names, how they came into being, the purpose and much more. This was quite a fascinating subject. 

 Alli taught us about tide pools. She showed us pictures of tide pools they saw on their Hawaiian vacation. So beautiful!
 Hailey's presentation was about a minor god in Roman mythology mentioned in Prince Caspian, whose name was Pomona.
 Josiah took us outside for a blacksmithing presentation and demonstration.
 He was working on a blade. He was totally in his element. Told us about the history of blacksmithing and its many uses.
 We really need to get an anvil for this kid!

Sadly, we forgot to take a picture of our meal, but it consisted of scrambled eggs, pigeon pie (chicken pie), and porridge with blueberries. 

We had such a good time and learned some really interesting things that month. The book is one of our favorites! On to Voyage of the Dawn Treader next.


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