Sunday, December 28, 2008

Happy New Years 2009

Another year is coming soon where has time gone? I feel soooo old. Weather has been gloomy lately I am hoping for a bit of a sprinkle to stop the fireworks from catching fire like last year. Poor volunteer fire department had to put out so many fires last year because of stupid people. We saw at least 4 fires in our area and I mean from my back porch. A friend of mine from Coop said they were outside trying to stop their place from catching fire caused by neighbors fireworks.

As always we dont go anywhere for the New year. Hubby and I have never really gone to any partys in the 20yrs we have been married. We don't really drink, we are not looking to look for someone else so what else is there? Be with friends family? hmm we just like to stay home with the kids do a few sparkles and relax from the Christmas season. We just had a party!

My house is still a mess from it sigh...We have a saying where if you dont have your house clean for the new year your house will be that way for the rest of the year. So all my family try to clean before the new year. We also have a tradition of opening the front and back door just before the new year to let any negative vibes out of the house.

Of course we have the other tradition where we eat black eye peas. The more you eat the richer your suppose to be :P

Well if you didnt notice already on the side of my blog is a new tracker. Its a walking tracker I got from tonight I will be tracking steps. I am also hopefully joining a walking club locally I need to call them.

Two of my sisters are all in plan to lose weight and get healthy too. I am also reading and following the advice of "I can make you thin" Paul McKenna. I saw his program a few months ago and when I actually start to follow his advice I lose weight.

His plan is really simple such as just eating what you want when you want just in quanity and be aware of what you eat. Eat slow enjoy the food. I remember the first week I started my jaw actually hurt from chewing so much hahaha

I had tried it for a bit then started getting ready for vacation and put it on hold. This time I bought his book and I found a journal I am going to use. Wish me luck


Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Frugal Christmas

With the economy being really bad this year so the experts say a lot of people are not going to have a good Christmas they say because of it. Instead of the 30 plus christmas toys the kids usually get they are only going to get maybe 6 or 7 *gasp* Instead of families going out to partys or having one they actually have to stay home with the kids and think of creative things to do with them *gasp again*

As for my family its no different this year as it was the last few years. We have a budget for each member the kids make a list knowing that they wont get everything on it. We think of creative things to do with the kids that won't cost a lot of money like our annual cookie bake.
We are not tightening our belts but we are not overspending either.

Yes we do have money to have a really have expensive Christmas but is that what we have strived for all these years of getting out of debt? To be able to have an expensive Christmas? To have our credit card maxed out again?

Through our quest through these last few years to be debt free we have learned its not about the toys we can get but the quality time with our family that means the most to us. Last year instead of buying a new tv because ours went out we got it fixed instead imagine that? We make cookies for my husbands office each year and also a few days before our Christmas Eve party (which everyone brings a dish) we give a bag to each family of goodies to take home with them. This means a lot for the families that dont bake a lot and have something for Christmas day to snack on, I make some of my moms oldies including more of my own.

I have a gift for each of my nieces and nephews but they are not that expensive under $10 and I start early buying them. I have a large family and because we are blessed this year I make sure all the kids will have something to open Christmas morning but I remind my family of something...

They have done studys where a kid will open 30 presents one after the other and at first they are excited but it soon dies down as they go as fast as they can to the next one and barily a whisper of thank you anymore. They can become ungrateful their eyes sort of glazed over of not knowing where to start with so many choices kids don't need that many choices. Where if a child has just a few presents to open they will mean more to him and he will take it slower and appreicate it more.

We have cut down a lot the last few years with the presents and the kids didnt really notice it, we dont put the presents there till Christmas Eve because then they will start to count who has more which you know how it is sometimes with sible rival.

One child wants something expensive so you buy that the other wants less expensive so you can buy him 3 things that cost about as much as the first childs present, but does a child know this? No its the number I tell you cost matters not to them.

Besides Christmas Eve all my other family brings gifts to exchange that night and the kids are allowed one gift to open so the other presents would get lost in the mess is our logic :)

Have a good Christmas don't believe what the so called experts say about having a poor Christmas if you say right now as you read this, "Well it is going to be poor" then that is what you are going to have you have just doomed yourself to having a poor, awful Christmas.

Think positive be creative and remember its Christs birthday not your kids.

Have a toy gift exchange with family/friends
Set a budget
Have the kids make a wish list but make sure they know they may not get all of it
Be creative make/bake things instead for family. Did they mention they love your pumpkin bread?
Shop early/Compare prices just dont buy it from one store
Shop at thrift stores clean them up some things still have tags on them.
Find free things going on in your community
A lot of organizations give away toys to families in need

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Pikes Place for Kids Seatle

Well we went in Dec to go see Pikes place in Seatle while we waited for our flight we loved it with a few downers if your taking kids.

On the highway strip near the airport there are a lot of hotels that you can rent all of them you will hear the planes just a fact of life people. We stayed at Best Western was really nice and clean make sure not to get near icemachines too loud!

Daves place great place to eat on that strip, had good fish and chips dont eat the steak there they dont know how to make a good steak like Texas can hahaha...also verrazanos great italian restaurant that had seafood a bit pricy but all italian restaurants can be pricey. It was worth it.

They have restaurant at hotel but we went to IHOP instead less crowded then Dennies down the way and the service was grand!

Hotel was near bus line if you wanted to use bus, word of caution make sure to come back in winter before 4:30pm it gets really dark fast. Rained most the night and morning but luckily by the time we went to Pikes place it had stopped.

We went to space needle..cost for family of 4 over $56 wow..daughter got really sick going up..word of advice if your afraid of heights make sure your not near the glass window going up in elevator it scared both of us.

Husband and son loved it took me awhile to let go of rail near building kept feeling I was tilting towards the other rail awful feeling.

Went to Children museum that was a waste for us kids are too big for it. If you have a kid older then 8yrs they will be really bored worse if you have a teenager. This is for really little kids they will have a blast.

We took monarail that is right near Space needle downtown towards Pikes place, Make sure to put your round trip tickets someplace you can find it later. It was fun.

It dropped us in a really nice mall we went down a few flights and hit the streets. Pikes place was 4 blocks down and I mean down. As soon as we hit the street my mom alert hit full force. You know what I mean the mom alert saying there is too many people, around that you can't vouch for.... that look suspious, the mom alert that makes you grab your kids hands and look where your older kids are at telling them to keep close. The mom alert that makes you stop smiling and put on a If you get near my kids I will bite your head off face expression" :)

Maybe if your from a city you are used to it but coming from a small town and living out in country I felt it full force. So anyways making sure Tommy had my hand and Randy was close to her dad we traveled downwards looking for a fish diner to eat. There was tons everywhere! Just a warning a lot of diners around Wash have bars in it too its just the fact of life down that way I noticed.

I found one couldnt remember the name of it If I find the receit I will write it down they had the best clam chowder I had yet in Wash state very friendly service, great fish! Oh and the deserts! all and every kind of culture you can think of is there at Pikes place, russian, french, american, chinese etc...try something different its a blast to your taste buds I even carried one with me to take on plane :)

The markets were great! The freshiest stuff I have ever seen in a long time, veggies, fruits, fish and even pasta. Even the fish they will pack it for you and put in container to take with you on the plane! Good for two days!

We loved all the shops looking out to the sea

Word of advice with kids you might want to explain to them.

Pikes place is full of homeless people, you can see them and not to be mean here but you sometimes can even smell some of them. This is just a warning so you can explain some facts of life to the kids. DO NOT let them use public bathrooms unless an adult goes with them even then you DONT want to do this. If your eating down there like at Seatles coffee shop or smaller restaurants ask to use their bathrooms instead.

The public bathroom my husband said had homeless people living in the stalls. I didnt check out the females probably the same thing. Some parts of the Pikes place was too scary and no one really down there that got my mom alert up again. I never saw any cops down there just outside on horses watch where you go or you might end up all alone.

On the up side there was a lot of talented homeless people playing guitar for money, playing all kinds of instruments, one man had two cats out on the sidewalk they both had sweaters on he said he was collecting for a cat society but you kind of know better. The cats were sweet he let my kids pet them one had two extra toes on her. We left him some money and had always some to give to the musicians.

Ok we left it was almost getting dark we didnt watch the time bad thing in seatle during winter it gets dark at 4:30pm. We rushed back to parking lot in this car garage was really scary I didnt see guards just female attendent. Make sure to take ticket with you so you can punch it in when you come back walking works different there then here in San Antonio where you pay as you drive out.

Thats about it. The hotel had a shuttle but our Enterprise where we rented was just down the street and they had their own shuttle. By the way we rented a SUV and it had automatic heated seats talk about pleasure in 40' weather hahaha. Look for hotels and car rentals during the day not at night because prices rise at night people are desperate and they know this!

Had a good time will love to go again at Pikes place


Saturday, November 29, 2008

History Links

Here are my favorite History Links

History Links

Growth of a Nation this is a must see for all parents and kids my favorite

Some pay sites: Free trial

History Link.Org

History Net

Best History websites

Civil war for Kids

Digital History

Maps of early America (has an annoying popup)
Eyewitness to History

History Channel

Famous Moments in Early American history


Audio clips history

American Presidents

President hall

American Time line

Time line of American Revolution

Declaration of Independence

Talking History

The above are my favorites but if you are looking for something specific like World War, Civil war, Jewish or Black History try the link below its one of my favorites too.

Classroom favorites

Please post me a msg if you have a favorite too so I can add it thanks!


Friday, November 21, 2008

Our Family Trip to Wash State

Well our flight was really nice. Southwest has come a long way and even though its a cheap plane it sure does not look it inside the plane it looked really new and clean. I thought was going to feel really Claustrophobic but it was a smaller plane with three seats in both side and nothing in the middle. The flight attendants were really nice and sometimes really funny.

The pilot though gave us two hard landings and my sinus was killing me. At one time my head starting spinning and giving me pain because of my cold and the plane starting to land I guess it was because of the congestion. We got to see the Grand Canyon.

I did forget my plier pocket knife was in my bigger purse. The lady asked me if I had anything in my purse she took me aside I guess cause they already saw it there. I looked at her and said, "Quite honestly I am not sure what I had packed" She pulled out the plier pocket knife with her gloved hand showing me. I blinked, "Oh darn I said I forgot about it" she started reciting her speech about what I had to do now if I wanted to keep it. I interupted her and said, "Look I forgot it was there just take it its not worth it she ran off with the object like it was burning her hands.

Husband was horrified thought I was going to get pulled over and body searched hahaha. Come on this is Texas I am sure they found bigger pocket knifes then my pinky knife that couldnt even cut a piece of thread besides the pliers were bigger. We kidded that I was going to be followed for the rest of the time because I looked like a dangerous person hauling around with me two kids and a husband.

Other then the head thing it was a really good flight and I was worried for nothing. When we got to the airport the shuttle took us to the rental car place we didnt have to wait long the Seatle airport had at least 6 going to Enterprise every few min.

They let me pick from 3 SUVs I was pleased and I picked a Dodge brand new one, hubby and the kids really liked it and our 6 luggage plus 5 carry ons fit nicely in the back. The drive to my motherinlaws house was really beautiful we went through some really big mountains and daughter pointed out some small waterfalls. Gosh it was so green, greener then I have seen in years living in Texas. There was no snow, it was good for driving but a bit disapointing I was hoping there was some on the ground at least. We are hoping for some more on the way back.

Well we are relaxing right now I am glad I got internet connection. We are off to go maybe see his grandma in a bit maybe get some lunch someplace. Its really cold over here but the sun thankfully is out today just really crisp outside.

Happy Thanksgiving everyone :)


Saturday, November 15, 2008

Almost there

Been washing like crazy to prepare for our trip to Washington state. They said I need the kids shot records or birth certificate. Its not like I am leaving the country! Good grief they said the kids school ID would work. ...."Blink"....We homeschool

Sooooo I am thinking maybe in future to go get their ID at drivers place. I wonder how old you have to be? Hubby said we should just get their passports instead. Sometimes he travels to Canada so they would need it then.

All the animals have been taken care of, the chicken coop roof once again has been fixed. The water containers all fixed too. I guess we are pretty much all set. I excited for the kids to be on the plane for the first time but scared for myself because of enclosed places.

Got to run


Wednesday, November 12, 2008

I've been tagged

Ok so I do these sometimes I dont mind :) This way I can learn more about the person. Just dont double tag me because I wont do it again unless its been a few months. I have no idea who I am going to send this to next so going to leave it blank for now at bottom then post it later:

A nice lady Marnie with an interesting blog I am going to keep up with now tagged me:

Here are the rules:

1. Each player starts with eight random facts/habits about themselves.2. People who are tagged need to write on their own blog about their eight things and post these rules.3. At the end of your blog post, you need to choose 3 people to get tagged and list their name.4. Don't forget to leave them a comment telling them they're tagged and to read your blog.So, here goes, 8 random things about me...

1. I sit in a broken chair just before it gets dark waiting for my chickens to go into their coop I like to just watch them and its peaceful out there :)

2. I curl my hair with my fingers when I am thinking

3. I really dislike electric storms when trying to sleep it freaks me out

4. I really dislike the cold thats why I live in Texas

5. My downfall is eating snowballs especially the pink ones also any pie yum

6. People who whine about their downs in their life irritate me

7. I met my husband tubing down the river. He was in the Army I was working at a girlscout camp for the summer.

8. Married my husband only after two months of seeing each other only on the weekends!

People I tagged:

Friday, November 7, 2008

Basic Dinner Menu Ideas

Basic Dinner Menu idea

I am trying to get together basic menus that we use and most Americans to get an idea how we eat and to be able to make weekly menus (substitute healthy items) I find it will be more organized as well as save on the purse in the long run.



Whole Chicken
Fried Chicken
BQ Chicken
Chicken in Crock Pot recipes
Recipe Chickens on stove our favorites-Peanut butter chicken, Chicken cooked with fruit and a sauce

Cut up Chicken/ Left over Chicken
Chicken Soup
Chicken Stir Fry
Chicken Sandwiches
Chicken Casserole
Chicken and Dumpling
Chicken Pot Pie
Chicken and Pasta


WholeRoast Beef

Beef Cuts
Flank/Round/Chuck/Corned Beef/Tenderloin/Brisket/Sirloin
Beef Sausages
Caldo/Beef Soup
Steak Pecado
Beef stir Fry
Beef and Pasta

Hamburger Beef
Sloppy Joes
Meat Loaf
Beef Stroganoff
Stuffed green peppers
Tacos shells/Tortillas

Pork/Turkey/Fish recipes

Pork, Pork Chops, Ribs, Ham
Sandwiches (Tortas)
Left Overs
Spilt pea soup
Stir fry with pork

Turkey: whole (lots to do with turkey leftovers, casseroles, stir fry, sandwiches, spaghetti, soup

Fish: Oven baked, stove top different kinds of fish, we like Salmon, tuna, catfish

Extra Dishes

Enchilada Cheese
Pasta Dishes/ Afredo, Lasagna,

Basic Pantry List

Trying to get my pantry list organized so I can update it to my family needs when I need too. I feel if you know what you have you can make sure to keep it well supplied, buy in bulk and on sale when needed, especially since you know you will need it eventually and use the coupons before they expire.

Baking Goods: Baking Powder, Powder Baking Soda, Chocolate Chips, Confectioners' Sugar, Dark/Light Brown Sugar, Corn Syrup Vanilla Extract (not flavoring), Yeast Packets (store in fridge), Shredded Coconut (store in fridge) Decorative Sugar and Sprinkles Food Coloring Hershey's® Cocoa Powder Unsweetened Baking Chocolate, Nuts & Seeds (almonds, pecans, walnuts, soy nuts, sunflower seeds, etc... store in freezer)

Breads:Bagels English Muffins Hotdog or Hamburger Buns Graham Crackers Multi-Grain Bread Pretzels Ritz®-like Crackers Tortillas -Can be stored in freezer for later use.

Canned Goods: Chicken Broth (or store your own in the freezer whenever you boil a chicken) Fruit (sliced peaches, pears, pineapple, fruit cocktail - packed in their own juice!) Soups (chicken noodle, tomato, cream of mushroom, cream of chicken, etc...) Tomatoes (diced, crushed) Tomato Paste Tomato Sauce Tuna (white albacore), or Chicken Vegetables (green beans, sliced mushrooms, etc...) Condensed Milk, Spaghetti Sauce , Olives (black or green) Pickle Hamburger Chips Pickle Relish Teriyaki Sauce, Pie Fillings Pumpkin
Extras. Hot Dog Chili , Salsa

Condiments: Ketchup, Mayo, Mustard, Dijon, Pickles, Jellys, Peanut Butter, Honey, Molasses, Applesauce Barbecue ,Canola Oil Cooking Spray, Olive Oil, Pancake Syrup, Salad Dressing, Soy Sauce Vegetable Shortening Vinegar Worcestershire Sauce, Apple Butter Apple-Cider Vinegar Pickle Hamburger Chips Pickle Relish Teriyaki Sauce

Dairy: milk, eggs, real butter, margarine, cheese, sour cream, Cool Whip®, ice cream, yogurt, etc...)

Drinks: Tomotoe juice, 7-up, cranberry juice

Dry Goods:
Coffee Cornmeal Cornstarch Cream of Wheat Dry Beans (black, pinto, navy, etc...) Dry Cereals Dry Milk Powder, Flour unprocessed,wheat, cake flour) Granulated Sugar Cream of rice Long-grain White Rice and Brown Rice, Oatmeal (quick cooking and regular)

Frozen: Peas, mixed veggies, brocolli, spinach,

Pasta (spaghetti, fettuccini, elbows, penne, rigatoni, shells, twists, lasagna, wide egg noodles, etc...) Ramen Noodles Tea

Perishable Items: (as needed)
Fresh Fruit in Season or on Sale (apples, bananas, berries, oranges, grapes, melons, etc...) Fresh Vegetables in Season or on Sale (asparagus, broccoli, cabbage, carrots, celery, corn on the cob, green peppers, mushrooms, etc...)
Garlic Meat, Fish & Poultry - (Whats on season)
Onions (yellow, sweet or red-which are actually purple)
Potatoes (white, small red, yellow/gold or sweet)
Salad (lettuce, tomato, cucumbers, etc...) Bottled Water (for emergencies)

Spices: Basil Bay Leaves, Bouillon Cubes (chicken and beef) Chili Powder, Cinnamon, Garlic both powder and salt, Ginger, Nutmeg, Onion Powder, Oregano, Paprika, Parsley, Pepper (coarse ground) Rosemary, Sage Salt (low-sodium, Morton® iodized and sea salt), cream of tarter, Vanilla,
Extras... Celery Seeds Chives Cloves Cumin Curry Powder Dry Mustard Poppy Seeds Sesame Seeds Thyme

Popcorn, Jello, Puddings, Cake mixes, Cake frostings, Raisins, Mini-marshmallows

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Its family time soon

We have only a week and half before our trip to Washington state happens wow where did time fly? I still have to rent our car which we have been holding back on deciding which one to get with chance of snow coming up through the path.

I am so glad the turkeys are taken care of, next week will be the last class for Co-op and the last class for my daughters calligraphy class. Then its washing, packing and preparing for two weeks of family visiting.

I look forward on seeing Seatle I have always wanted to go there we might not go their the first few days but on the way back hubby promised me a few days there :) should be really fun.

Thank goodness the election is over I really had a sour stomach the night of the election, I am sure things will change but not all for the good. I am a real conservative with certain values that I think is dieing with people in America. I can only be thankful Texas is still a good ol republican state for how long?

I don’t know it was really close in our state however looking locally I looked at our local election and it was McCain 10,404 votes, Democratic 2,396, Libertarian Party 75 seems the cities seem to have more democrats. I will pray for Obama he has a lot to tackle and with some crazy supporters thinking he is going to personally take care of them.

Did anyone see the one on youtube with the supporter saying she would be so happy if he was elected because she wouldn’t have to worry about filling up her gas or paying her mortgage? Good grief.

Enough I am tired. Going to take a nap for a bit then start on dinner and chores was out this morning to try to get my dad another cell phone, pick up daughter then shop a bit I am pooped. Driving to San Antonio makes a person sleepy J

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Shrink bags

We used the shrink bags this week during Turkey processing time andreally liked them. Our customers said they looked very professionalthey loved them. Last year we tried using the small vacuum sealer andthat took a lot of time (very messy & frustrating), it was betterthan not doing anything to the bags at all. We wanted thosecommercial vacuum sealers but they cost around $4000 on up aroundhere. We will let you know in a couple of months how they handle inthe freezer.Here is what we did and it seemed to work.

We made sure the turkeys were well drained of any water this is very important. After processing we sanitized our homemade scalder once more and gotthe temperature to 180-200 degrees then husband held on to the top ofthe bags, at this time we did NOT twist them at all we just held onto the top. He did not submerge the turkey all the way.He then dunked til it sealed at the bottom without any air really.Then he pulled it out twisted it and I put the hog ring pins on withthe pliers and closed it shut tight. Hubby then turned it around anddunked it the other way just a bit to seal the other side.

This takestwo people one to hold the turkey up and the other to put the ringson with pliers.We found doing it this way kept the air out and we didn't poke anyholes anywhere. It went really fast. Done.Notes:1. Use those long oven gloves that can take the heat, should worknicely so you won't burn yourself with the scalder, better safe thansorry.2. Here is a picture of the finished product. We will be using thoseshrink bags again next time I highly recommend them if don't alreadyhave a commercial vacuum sealer.

It will save you tons $. Very important: our biggest bird was only 18 lbs which was reallygood because our customers want 18 lb and lower. On the site it saysLarge Turkey (20-25 lb) bags well it barely fit our 18 lb it did notget us enough room on top to twist. I doubt it would fit a larger 20lb they must have went by some really skinny birds. Next time we aregoing to also order some of the Extra large 20-25 lb bags for themore hefty ones.4. Here is the farm where we ordered the bags they are hard to get ahold of because they are a working farm so don't order at the lastmin they will return your call when they can.

Thanks for my Pasture Poultry group for sharing this site with me y'all I hope others will benefit from the bags as well. Hog rings and pliers they have them at the website to buy, if youcan find them cheaper look around we found ours at our local Tractorsupply store but we were lucky it was the last ones left due tohunters grabbing all the others.Sam/Moderator

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Kids Chores and money

I have a hard time giving my kids money for home chores. I give my daughter a modest allowance biweekly when we get paid. Its not for doing chores around the house its just allowance because we love her and we want her to save and handle money wisely.

Doing chores around the house is part of all families duties and I really dont think kids should get paid for it. My daughter chores are pick up trash with help of her brother. Put dishes away in dishwasher or counter if I can't get to them. Wash, fold and put away her own clothes. Keep her room cleaned, feed her own cat sometimes the other house cats or outside cats if her Pa'Pa is away and cant do it. She helps me dust and fold the towels sometimes.

My son hasnt got an allowance yet he is 8yrs but he is just understanding about money right now I am teaching it at co-op and he is one of my students. He puts away his own clothes and pick up his room, helps sissy with trash, feeds his dog sometimes his sisters dog if she is away for the night and her fishes as well.

We all work together, when daughter wants to earn a bit more money I have her do things for extra like , pair up her fathers socks and put them in drawer for $1 I hate doing this and hubby likes them together...mine arent they are clean but I dont have time to pair them up blaaaa...hahaha

She cleans the inside of my car for a few dollars although picking up trash in car is not one of the things she gets paid for because that is required to keep the back seat clean that's where her and her brother sit.

She has to dust and clean the fabric and dashboard of the car. Sometimes when her brother rooms is sooooo messy I can't get him to even start because he is so lost I have her help and direct him a bit.


Saturday, October 25, 2008

Company Picnic

Oh what fun we had today as my husbands company had their annual picnic it’s still good to see things normal even with these hard times everyone is going through right now. Gas is almost back to normal so it wasn’t too much as we headed out to the beautiful hillcountry to this one ranch.

My husband and my two kids along with me and dad tagged along. When we first got their we were starved because we had only oatmeal for breakfast knowing we would eat like pigs for this thing we saved room in our stomachs hahaha

Mini hamburgers, hotdogs, quesada’s, B-Q chicken, sausage on a stick and beef sandwiches, chulupas or some people call them tostadas depending on if you’re from Calif or Texas. They had corn on the cob, potatoes salad, cole slaw, salads with watermeon, to drink they had sodas of all kinds, lemonade, punch, coffee, hot chocolate, water. I noticed they didn’t have bottle water this year just the water in the jugs. For Desert they had smores with a camp fire to cook your marshmallows, cookies, brownies, candy apples, and the Swans truck was there with all kinds of ice cream as much as you can eat they kept trying to push it on everyone that went by it was funny.

For entertainment they had a small 30 min rodeo, which was fun they had a cowboy roper and he made everyone laugh with his jokes as well as his gimmicks along with bull riding and barrel racing. They had Texas poker and bingo and they all had cash prizes of $50-$175 certificates. I really tried and I came close to it but I didn’t win too many other lucky people there with their troop of kids hahaha-no fair. Mine were off to the rides, Tons of bouncing things and two rock climbing walls, hayrides, usually fishing but the creek was dry. Freesbie toss, all kinds of rides my kids kept going on them till they were green in the face especially with all that food I am surprised they didn’t barf.

Best of all it was 5 hours of fun with the family and it was all FREE!!! Did I mention it was FREE!!! My husband company also hosts a Christmas night out with a big band and free food for the adults only, for years I didn’t go because hubby didn’t tell me who was playing he just said you want to go to Christmas party? I am like hmmm I don’t think so…. but he forgot to always mention the big hits bands that were playing I thought it was some DJ or something. Like last year it was Chicago then the year before that it was Journey I Think. That’s a big thing not to mention!

So once a year now hubby and I leave the kids with whoever we can and we dress up in beautiful clothes that we only wear once a year hahaha and we get a hotel room and we party all night long. Can’t wait to see who is playing next.

Well its 11:40 here I need to get to bed my allergy’s are killing me I need sleep! It was a beautiful day thanks Lord for making it normal and a blessing that we could take my dad with us.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Pantry all organized

So after 3 pay days I finally got my pantry organized the first week I had it organized I saved $50 on shopping because I didnt buy extra stuff. The last couple of paydays I was buying in bulk or extra stuff because I wanted to be ready just in case of hard times coming ahead. I had no idea though what I have now I do I am soooo proud.

I am cleaning off my kitchen table next and my pantry for my cans next. I have a microwave in it that I only use once a year so I am thinking of putting it away till Christmas time and using it for my computer and other stuff.

Well its almost turkey process time. My dad has been helping clean up the farm and I have been trying to help when I can. He made a mistake of burning some grasss which almost gave me a heart attack lol. Can you imagine your going to have people come over and they are going to see burnt grass....sigh anyways took care of that problem with a little sweat I put in some of my compost around it, I couldnt use it anyways my dad made it posion by putting in round up spray around it..sigh again. What can I say my dad loves chemical sprays.

The sheep have been busy clipping the grass which is good they will hit the spots where the grass is high so we don't have to pull out the weeds. There is so much to do still, this weekend we are going to my husbands company picnic, which is free, Free food, free prizes, free cant beat that and all the dessert you can eat.

Hubby pulled out the hive didnt get stung thank goodness the other day he really got them mad shaking their box trying to get it lose they stung him 3 times but he is kind of allergic so he was down for a whole day just feeling really bad.
Well got to get going, we are going to football game tonight, then tomorrow is my daughters anime meeting.


Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Speech Problems Homeschooling Kids-Texas

As most insurance companys they usually only carry kids up to 5yrs with speech problems then they think the public schools are going to help so they cut you off. Public schools must do a evaulation on the kids its the law. They can make exceptions for homeschoolers but they dont have too. Yes I know we pay their school taxes yet they dont have to help us if they dont want too. Pretty sad. So you be nice to them and see if they have room to help you on the side or if you want to have full speech therapy you need to enroll full time.

My son has a speech problem where he forgets to make his "S" Sounds and forgets the "D" sounds in the middle. He talks too fast so it comes out mumble. Every year I kept hoping it would get better he is 8 yrs now and it hasnt gotten much better but at least we can understand him, others can't which he has a hard time making friends because of that plus he is behind in his studys. How could I get him to read when I cant even get him to say his ABC out loud.

Our insurance cut us off so we have to look for alternatives. I called THSC they were not much help they directed me to a volunteer site which the most information all I got was that they were extremely busy and they volunteered but if you have a question feel free to ask them. So I did and in response I got was the same thing they volunteer and are extremely busy good grief. Yes well I got that why dont you even have links to your site at least!

So I spent hours trying to find the information I needed. To help myself and others I plan to put them here and perhaps send to THSC for others. I feel alone right now.

Here is a list of Texas Speech Schools they have direct links to their school so you can find out if you can qualify to take your kids there. Most have a flat rate fee but if your low income they might offer classes for less. They have a l ot more to offer so I am going to contact them next to see what they can do to help me. I will update later.

Texas Speech Language Hearing Association-List of Schools

San Antonio offers Our Lady of the Lake University

At the time I write this the cost for evaluation is $175 flat rate fee -$55 for each hour taught which is about $100 less then the place my insurance used to pay.

It goes before a board the paperwork you do and it works by semester so the sooner we do this the better. If your lower income it might be cheaper. We are middle class so I doubt it for us.


Update: Letter finally from THSC dated Friday/Oct 24

Dear Samantha,

I am sorry you have not been able to find any assistance with your son's speech problems.

Since July 1, 2001, public schools have not been required to provide special education services to home school students. Then Texas Education Commissioner Jim Nelson confirmed this in a letter to THSC in March, 2001. "Public schools may still choose to provide special education services to private school students on a part-time basis if they wish, but they will no longer be required to do so," he said.

This is the result of changes in the federal Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) in 1997 and the federal regulations issued in 1999. The 1997 regulations required public schools to "provided special education and related services designed to meet the needs of private school children with disabilities residing in [its] jurisdiction."

However, the new regulations state, "No private school child with a disability has an individual right to receive some or all of the special education and related services that the child would receive if enrolled in a public school."
According to Commissioner Nelson, public schools are now required to spend a portion of their IDEA funds to provide for participation for private school children with disabilities.

However, "the type of services and manner in which they are provided are to be determined by the local school district based on consultations with appropriate representatives of private school children with disabilities." Commissioner Nelson concluded by saying, "Those students will receive only those services that can be supported by federal funds..."

We would encourage you to contact the school district and ask them to meet with you concerning how they can help you with the special needs of your child as a "representative of private school children with disabilities."
Hope this is helpful.



Friday, October 17, 2008


Ok, so while trying to do my cleaning this last few weeks I am trying to organize as well. I find that as I organized its like losing pounds of worry off my mind if that makes sense. Also its been helping me with my diet....oh I hate to say that word....ummmm healthy living choices is much better.

When I think of dieting I think of starving myself it has such a negative impact on the mind the word especially if you are trying to do that for years. I bought a white magetic board for my bathroom to encourage myself, its the first thing I see in the morning and so far I saw it and got encouraged so I am drinking water as I type this right now.

1. Take Vitamins (Check)
2. Take Garlic Pill (Check)
3. Drink Water (Check on 1 -8 oz 1/2 4 oz of water
4. Exercise (Going outside in a min to do chores and walk around the grounds I wish my peodeometer was working!
5. Eat slowly today (noted)
6. Nightly stretch ritual in bathroom before bath

Last night I bought shoe box size containers and put the jello in one, pudding in another, sauce mixes in another, hot cereal in yet another. Also have two one for tea and the other for different flavor teas. I will take a picture of it when I can. Speaking of picture I am keeping an eye out for cameras. I really want a new one for our trip as well as for taking pictures for my ebook and website my old one is soooo blurrrry lately and its only a 4pix.

The one I am looking at has 8 pix and has a mini video camera with sound :)

Well lots to do this morning. I got us an hair appointment with our hollywood hair dresser. I call her that because when we get our hair done it feels like we are movie stars hahaha...yah she is that good, she is expensive but you get what you pay for which is why we dont do it very often.


Thursday, October 9, 2008

Clean Clean why cant I clean

Well for days now I have been trying to clean the house I had it in my mind that was going to organize some more but with just doing basic chores, trying to get some homeschool in and doing extra stuff like trying to sale our lamb and rest of the turkeys its been impossible.

I have only been able to do the basic stuff like keep dishes clean, sweep floors and do the laundry. We found out this week was the last week to get our lambs in before our butcher shuts the door on us livestalk people and open up for only deer hunters and this will go on till January.

Poor deer ....well....maybe...but have you ever had deer meat and did I mention we will be getting some really low cost deer meat from our butcher at the end of deer season :) It seems that after deer season hunters will take their kill there but wont pick it up or varies reason, no room, no money or wife says no WAY! anyways thats low cost deer meat for us.

We bought our tickets to Washington state for Thanksgiving my husband is really excited he hasnt seen his family in a long time and while I am excited too I am a bit worried because I need a suitcase, I need warm pants because I really dont own that many living in Texas :) Tommy needs some pants too, Miranda needs a jacket...sigh the list goes on and we have only 3 more paydays. Looks like I am hitting the thrift shops.

With this economy right now its pretty scary I was having doubts but hubby and I sat down talking about our finances and I am feeling much better now, things are not so bad with us at least. Its funny we are able to invest in our retirement but I hardly have any money for clothes for us right now.

Well need to sign off to go do dishes to go to bed.

Friday, October 3, 2008

Shot Friday-More Anime

Well we just got back from San Antonio where the kids had to get shots updated. The girlscout group wanted a copy of my daughters shot record and when I went to get it out I noticed some of it was missing, so when I called to get it they said by the way......

My daughters eyes watered up but she didnt cry, my son did I had to hold him down for the second one plus they got the mist flu shot. They hated it. I myself would rather get it as a shot then shot up my nose. They tried to get me to give my daughter that cervic cancer one ummm its for girls with risk of cancer from having intercourse...I told them no, they looked at me...she is guarded more then fortknox hahaha please......she is not even allowed to date yet. Not saying there is anything against it but its farily new so I want to wait to see what happens. I wouldnt even give my kids the chicken pox shots till it was out for a few years.

To make up for the torture I put them through that morning I took them to Dennys where they could have breakfast served to them other then mommy :) We then hit the thrift shop on the way back looking for yet another Anime costume for my daughter, this time I told her we are making it not buying it she agreed.

Her character has 4 pony tails, black dress with v neck (we couldnt find so we got blouse and skirt) We got material that looks like it was part of a curtain (red) to make around her waist. The shoes are the one thing I am worried about finding and the huge fan she is suppose to have too.

I wish I could afford to just buy it for her but its just not possible we are trying to save as much as we can right now and its coming out of my allowance money.

Not much going on for the weekend there is Oct Fest in one of our nearby towns but that usually cost money. I would freely give it if I had it :)

I had lost my coupon books awhile back so I had to do another, while trying to find my blouse I had just bought that was on sale I found it....but still havent found my blouse sigh...I am so disorganized right now so much going through my head.

I have a homeschool magazine write me for an interview about my postcard group they want a picture but I need to wait for my hubby (takes awful pic, sorry honey) or my sister to come to take it for us to send to them. My editor that buys my homeschool articles wants some comments from me for her updated books she is doing so I need to do that too.

I have been working on my ebook again I printed it out to be able to look at it better then on the computer so its slow going havent had much time but at night when the kids are asleep to work on it. I really want to get this out soon I think its a good time to introduce it.

I need to reread my ebook on how to get it out again. I need to find an artist and I need to get it edited.


Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Veggies in Season

Seasonal Veggies

Januaryoranges, grapefruit, tangerines, tangelos, lemons, papayas, cabbages: red, white and green; leeks, broccoli, cauliflower

Februaryoranges, tanelos, grapefruit, lemons, papayas, broccoli, cauliflower

Marchpineapples, mangoes, broccoli. lettuce

Aprilpineapples, mangoes, zucchini, rhubarb, artichokes, asparagus, spring peas, broccoli, lettuce

Maycherries, pineapples, apricots, okra, zucchini, rhubarb, artichokes, asparagus, spring peas, broccoli, lettuce

Junewatermelon, strawberries, cantaloupe, cherries, blueberries, peaches, apricots, corn, lettuce

Julywatermelon, strawberries, cantaloupe, blueberries, peaches, apricots, kiwi, raspberries, plums, cucumbers, tomatoes, summer squash, corn, green beans, lettuce

Augustwatermelon, strawberries, cantaloupe, blueberries, peaches, apricots, kiwi, raspberries, plums, cucumbers, corn, eggplant, tomatoes, summer squash, green beans, lettuce

Septembergrapes, pomegranates, persimmons,eggplants, pumpkins, tomatoes, spinach, lettuce

Octobercranberries, apples, pomegranates, grapes, sweet potatoes, pumpkins, winter squash, broccoli, spinach, lettuce

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Is no one listening?

So I go to my favorite chat haunts and have been reading and I know people try to keep the politics down but no one is talking about preparing for what is sure to come. Is everyone blind? Or just not caring? I think now that gas is a bit below $4 people have stopped panicking.

We are so close to the brink of collasping and everyone is just going about every day life. Its like watching everything in slow motion and you see something coming but everyone is just going slow and not caring.

I know I am wierd hahaha but I am worried when our Treasury Secretary says "God help us all" seeing the huge businesses go down you got to be worried just a tiny bit. No one is talking about it no one is preparing.

We did a lot of gardening today and I am relucant to use any of our can goods I am using everything up in the freezer and fridge stuff that will last. I am trying to get more organized go to sleep earlier get up earlier but its still not helping and tomorrow will be no help.

Tomorrow we do a bit of fun and go to Homeschool day at SeaWorld its always fun to do this I can't wait though I feel guilty like I should be home inventorying instead. I am still not sure what I want to do for my birthday we are short money sigh....and I take my car finally in to see once again if they can fix my air conditioner I wish it would stay fixed because I have to do my transmission next.

We did sit down and talk to the kids about things changing and hubby sat down with me on us getting really back to budgeting just in case things go bad. There are some container lids we are looking into for bulk barrels for flour, sugar might sound extreme to some of you but we think of it this way if nothing happens then we buy in bulk which is frugal and we will have a lot stored up for any emergency.

Well got to run to get to bed early...we are still alive and kicking.


Sunday, September 14, 2008

Money Class K-3rd

Edited July 16


Two poster boards with money bought at school house locker store
Money stamps stickers I got from Dollar tree for $1 each
Poster boards different colors from Dollar General
Play money I got from Dollar General $1 hated that it didnt nichols


This year I am teaching a money class for K-3rd grade since its a broad range of ages I had to be prepared for kids who knew more then others on this subject. This sort of teaching reminds me of the old school house approach meaning that the teacher had a broad range to teach the kids in the old days; One teacher many age group of kids.

Bingo board: Above picture is my attempt at making a money bingo for basic identifications 1 c 5 c 10 c 25 c $1 $5 $10 and $20 I made cards to go along with it next to the boards as you can see. I made 6 boards each of them have different places where everything is place but each board has the same thing on it. Its not a matter of winning but idenitifying without looking at your neighbors board. I showed them the card the first time around then second time I just called out the money for them to try to find.

When I tried this game it went really, really fast with them both times so was it worth it? I think it was good practice for them this would have been especially good for prek-K

Next week I attempt another bingo game more advance

First week -Hour class actually about 45min because you have to settle down which takes around 5min and 10min to clean up.

Work on pennys-First Day

*I hide 20 pennies around the room and they had to find it and place on the table. (This went really well, the kids loved and and told their moms they loved it)
*We then placed them all on the table and discussed the penny how much its worth, how different they were, how some were older looking then others, how different ones have different dates on it. I brought in a canada looking coin that almost looked like it and told them to see if any of them looked different, they of course found it. I then told them what it was how it looked like a penny but it wasnt. I then showed them the fake pennies we were going to use in its place.

*I also have for the first day a coloring sheet, this went really fast especially for boys they didnt like it very well.

*We did some work sheets they didnt like it much but I know the moms love to see this later and the kids love to show it off. Each semester I buy those plain folders and have the kids color put stickers on it with their names at the end of the semester I give it back to them with their work sheets and they can take home to show other parent/grandparent. (note: I had tried to let them take it home each day their worksheets before but it always ended up on the floor someplace in coop or in their knapsack for ages. This is a lot better)

Identifying a penny sheet from

Money worksheets with pennies from

*I have bought from the teachers store-Carson-Dellosa Publ Poster boards of US COINS I hung this on the board and we discussed it, especially the one that says it takes 5 pennies to make a nichol, two nichols to make a dime etc...

*Playing my homemade bingo game I laminated

*Playing dice game with pennies - Role dice you get that many pennies-when they collect 5
pennies they can turn into bank (My class assistant was the banker) and get 5cents each person takes turns collecting pennies. When they get two 5 cent pieces they can turn it in for 2 dimes etc...till quarter This took a good 30min They boys loved it, the ones that didnt grasp it didnt like it but I have high hopes. It was a good game. We had only gotten to only 25cents. I need to spice it up a bit.

Emergency I will take playdoh in and they can press real pennies into it for fun. (Didnt have time for it but its good to have in future)


Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Texas Christmas Snow

Favorite Quote for today: "We ask justice, we ask equality, we ask that all the civil and political rights that belong to citizens of the United States, be guaranteed to us and our daughters forever." —Susan B. Anthony, Declaration of Rights for Women, July 1876

Oh how beautiful this cotton looks its all around me in the fields, but what comes with this beautiful prickly cotton is the worst allergery season for locals like myself that happen to live around it.

First the planes come zooming in at the wee hours of the morning if you want to sleep forget it as they zoom close by and spray chemicals all over. Of course they always pick the days when the wind has changed and its blowing towards our house. The first whif I get I go into a sneezing fit. They do this for a few weeks then finally one day you see the big trucks out there ready to pick and then it gets worse.

The dust they kick up and the final spraying combination just makes my throat tighten up and my eyes start to burn. I am a zombie those final weeks with so many allergery meds in me I have yet to find any that WONT make me sleepy. I go to my doctor and I tell her I don't need any that make me sleepy I am a MOM I can't have those. What does she do give me one that the first time I take it knocks me out for two days flat! I need to change doctors.

At HEB today I see locals surrounding the allergery medicine section. Its a cold they say smiling....bull I think ....funny when its a cold they say its allergerys hehe

A little rain comes today and with it the hopes of a hurricane in a distance which could be deadly for some but a God send for us far inland folks hoping it will bring rain and with it wash away the last remaining chemicals and cotton fields till they next plant the corn...which is not so bad unless you see movies like "The sign" with Mel Gibson haha

On to other news my ad in the homeschool paper didnt work out so well I didnt get one call from it :( I still have 13 lambs to sell I am at lost where to advertise next for it without costing and arm and a leg.

We had our co-op registration for our homeschool it went pretty well I think. I have only 5 students in my money class that is just enough for me. I did the happy dance when I found out. When I first started teaching I would end up with 14 students plus it was really hard back then to control that many little ones. I don't know how the teachers from public school do it. Years of practice I imagine and doing it over and over again.

I looked again at my pecan trees I really dont see any on the trees. Where did they go? Did they not form? Last year I didnt think I was going to get any and I did so hopefully I will again at least get a few. I was really hoping for a good crop this year :(

I feel a little depressed today must be from very little sleep the last couple of days I need to get back in a sleeping schedule, go to bed earlier, wake up earlier. I have been going to bed around 3am and getting up around 8am ...5 hours of sleep is not cutting it. I dont mind a 30min nap but anything longer wears on me.

My car is in the shop that could be another reason why I feel a bit under the weather. Every time it goes I get depressed because I feel trapped at home. They usually have to order a part that is in another city and it takes them days to get here then they fix it and it goes out again within a few weeks. This is the 4th time to take it in this summer, my family keeps telling me to get rid of the car....sigh...yah give me the money to buy a new one CASH and I will. I am thankful to even have a car right now. I heard last night that people are not getting loans for cars and keeping their older cars. My own mechanic says business has picked up haha yup sounds about right.

Ok dont want to be that depressed soooo...lets see good things....My house is clean, laundry is caught up, did all my shopping before car went down. Hubby let me order netflix and its really paying for itself we get two movies at a time and we can usually get 4 in all for a week. I am catching up with movies.

I had a dream of my mother after a year and 3 months and I was finally able to hug her and talk to her briefly saying how much we missed her and she said responded back. I realized I was dreaming, I realized she was gone I was alert in my dream...its was good...put me at peace. I had dreams of mom before but always I see her in a distance or I could never hear her or I hear her but not see her.....was frustrating.

Someone did me wrong not long ago sort of snubbed me in front of others. I was angry but instead of getting upset I sent them an encouragement card. It was hard to do I was upset. I had a feeling she might be one of those persons that might thrive in bad things happening in their lives so they can get care from others. I have seen this type before, but instead I sent the card with gritted teeth but my heart really meant it, it was was stubborness that was trying to hold me back.

Saw her again a few days ago, she hugged me said it meant the world to her and she felt bad about how she treated me that day, said I had no idea what is going on in her life. She didnt say any more I didnt ask her. I am not one of those women that are listeners I think she knows this... I am one of those people that say, "There is no victimes in life only volunteers". "Things happen for reason even when its really bad" Get a bit of comfort if things go wrong but then put the chin up and go on with life ...too much to do so little time we have on this earth. I hope things get better for her.

Speaking of which I need to get off of her and ...I am going to give my son icecream right now and we are going to spend some time together.

Saturday, September 6, 2008

Sept is here

Picture: Last big storm we had here had over 3 inches of rain yah us!
Where did time fly? Its already Sept and school is starting and I am not ready! Ack!

I am not so worried because I have gotten most of the things I wanted to get done in and around
the house with the help of my husband, dad and kids so life is looking really good. We got the mulch down for the garden again and I have been slowing pulling down my summer garden and getting ready for the fall garden. Iam behind....go figure.

Well end of August we celebrated our sons 8th birthday and our 20th anniversary. We didnt do anything really really exciting like we wanted too but it was nice and we got to talk a lot which meant the world to me. Son had his birthday at home with his cousins and his pinata that he wanted so bad. We bought him a new and bigger fish tank with some new fish compliments of his grandma from Wash State.

Pecans should be falling soon I am really excited. Home school Co-op should be starting soon I am only teaching one class "Money class" for Tommy and kids his age should be fun. Tomorrow I am going flea marketing with my sisters so I better sign off early here just wanted to let y'all know I am breathing and everyone here on the farm is fine.

5 New kittens addition to our farm ...sigh....anyone want any kitten? :)


Tuesday, August 19, 2008


These are not from my chickens it was from someone in my Pasture Poultry group I thought it was really neat the double tripple egg yolk.

I have recently edited this part because the owner of the eggs wrote me below and said their chickens were not sickly but very young and started to lay young. "A chicken "Mistake" she said. You can read her comment below.

Deep in the back of my mind I knew they were not sickly I just couldnt put my mind to typing the right "word" my fingers typed faster then my brain sometimes hehe so please forgive me.

I believe that could happen with a young hen like hers did; however I have chickens of my own that are two-three-four years old and they sometimes lay these kind of eggs too, they are not young. Someone in the group say it could be from the diet?. Maybe its because they are getting older and their cycle is getting all mixed up again? I can see that happening too.

Ahhh well if you ever go to our Pasture Poultry group you can see how we debate on so many subjects when it comes to chickens, Different methods different breeds, different climates so it all varies. Just when you think you figure it all out about chickens someone comes out with another theory about the subject that has you thinking hmmmmm

Raising chickens for so long now and watching the Pasture Poultry group for years I have come to the conclusion that not one person, book, website is 100% completely correct. Just got to go with what is good in your guts for you and your family it’s what we are doing.

Well August has been a busy month with birthdays and anniversary’s. My husband and I just celebrated our 2oth has it been that long already? Seems just like yesterday when I met him tubing down the river with his army friend. Two months after we met and only seeing each other one day at of each weekend (I was working summer camp) he got orders to leave to Germany and it was either say goodbye or get married. Glad he made the right choice hehe

We got 2 1/2 inches of rain these last few weeks...Thank you God! We actually still have standing puddles. Chickens are fine but laying less now, I just put an ad in the homeschool newsletter to advertise our sheep and turkeys it has over 5000 members.

I still have around 13 sheep to sale and I am hoping to get new customers or its back to the advertising board to figure out where I can advertise next. I like to stick to the homeschoolers since it’s a field I know and the families are usually great. As Joel says you want customers that want good quality you don't want customers looking for a bargain they will give you trouble.

We should be harvesting our honey soon I am disappointed hubby didn’t have time to put another super on for the new bee hive to get more honey since there is still a lot of flowers around. I did uncover the older empty one and cleaned it out a bit hoping a nice bee family will move in like our last one.

Sept/Oct should be time to harvest the pecans, a few are falling down already but they are green still. I can't wait because I am about out.

Garden is sort of dormant right now getting a few tomatoes, I need to do an update on it on what I learned this year...coming soon.

Well that’s about the update for now have a great upcoming week.

Saturday, August 9, 2008

Daughter Anime Girl Scout Troop

My daughter is a big fan of Kingdom Hearts video game and Anime stuff so when a friend of a friend decided to start a Girl Scout Anime troop in San Antonio we jumped at the chance to join. I was despertly searching about this time things for my daughter to do to get her busy during her teenage years for socializing.

She had talked about going back to public school but hearing how things were in the public school I knew it would not be a good choice. I felt it was the girl friends she was missing. She had her best friend but she needed to interact with others her age.

It was difficult because she is not into boys as most public school girls her age is, but she loves the anime stuff. Every other week her troop meets and they have met so far for dinner with each other at a chinese restaurant of course and they have gone to two Anime conventions the biggest being here in San Antonio this weekend.

They are having a blast. We had to order her costume from Hong Kong and we were disapointed that the wig did not come in time so we had to spray paint her hair. Daughter says she didnt mind doing it but in future she really hopes not too hehe its very sticky. She was Zexion from Kingdom of hearts she made the book herself. Her best friend was lexaeus.

The Costume was so much we told her we expect her to get married in it someday hehe. It hasnt been cheap but it has been really well worth it. She can be any of the organization she just has to change hairdos and prop.

Hubby and I are very happy that she is having fun with the group and talking to the other moms they were also glad to find other girls into the Anime stuff since this is very odd to some people its not very common. So far they have around 15 girls in the group and it grows each time I talk to the group leader. It has been a postive experience for our daughter.

Doing the Anime stuff has been a learning experience for the moms and dads as well as we have had to watch what they watch, play and read to make sure its for their age.


Sunday, July 27, 2008

Harvest Time Pear greanbeans

Dolly was heading our way we thought the other day so I went outside to pick the pears from the fruit orchard before it knocked them down and my husband helped. We were pleasantly surprised to get so many for second season. Last season we had just planted the tree, so I am hoping my next season it will be even more pears.

Not sure what I am going to do with them, but I better hurry before they rot or husband eats them all hehe I also picked a lot of green beans that day and we ate the whole lot of it that night yum.

Well the turkeys are doing ok still thank goodness I am praying the worst is over now. We havent had any more attacks on the sheep lately but we have been keeping them in the orchard. Took my husband on a date to go see the “Darknight” it was pretty gloomy I wouldn’t take my own kids to go see it which is why we left Randy here with Tommy today. My dad and sister were right next door.

Tomorrow is our co-op meeting for my homeschool group. I hope she takes my suggestion on making it a 3 hour day for classes per day instead of 4 hours and giving the kids and moms more lunch hour play time.

I just used the last of my pecans from last year on some pumpkin bread I can’t wait till next seasons pecans I already have a trade going for some syrup.

Well that’s it for tonight.

Sunday, July 20, 2008

The Ant Massacre of 2008

So we got our turkey chicks a few days ago and everything went ok as we put all 41 into the brooder. The brooder was build by my husband 7 years ago so it was getting on in age and falling apart a bit, but we really didn’t know how much till the other night I was going to the back yard to go check on them and I saw both of the dogs under the trailer playing with something.

It was a turkey chick. I was in shock, how did it get there? Nooooooo I cried as I tried to get it away I had to crawl under the trailer to grab it, finally I did and they had another one they were playing with, I grabbed that one only to see another and another roaming around. My son and his cousin were out in the back yard I yelled to them, "Tommy go get your Daddy! Hurry!

So my son ran in, "Mommy needs you daddy it’s the turkeys" What had happen was the bottom back board was rotting and they were just rolling out into the grass area. Well after we fixed that little problem two of the chicks had died and ants were on them. I thought maybe it was trauma from the dogs? I took the dead ones out and then an hour later saw 2 more dead with ants of them. It hit me, it’s not the trauma it’s the ants killing my chicks they are attacking them.

We put them in a box for the night in our house; we lost another chick to being smushed. The next day we had to clean out the whole brooder, move it, spray it with this orange natural biodegradable oil plus something else my husband put in there and cover it back up. They are happy now but we lost a total of 7 chicks. That’s a lot of chicks to lose the first few days. 10 of those chicks were supposed to be ours. At least we are blessed that we didn’t have to feed them that long but we lost out on the cost of buying them.

I pray now the others will survive for their rest of their journey.

A bird ate two of my tomatoes today, they were almost ready to pick sigh….at least it left me one. Tomorrow I need to try to cover them up. I found someone to buy my goats milk a nice lady from my milk/egg group I am so happy to find someone who likes goat milk I am glad to be able to share with her Barrels milk. It will be enough for me and some for her and later when I wean the babys from her I will get even more for my cheese making. The money will help pay for Barrels feed, it has gone up so much. Today I attempted to make Feta cheese and I followed the directions wrong so I have to start all over. I am short two quarts of milk and right now I am saving up for my new customer so I will have to wait till Wed milking to finish up.

Thursday is payday it can’t come soon enough so much to get for the house.


Friday, July 18, 2008

Buying Curriculmn online

This is listed in my website but thought I would add it here too.


Curriculum When buying curriculum for the year find out which one you want first by asking other homeschoolers, checking out a book fairs, looking online or ordering a catalog from the vendor. Once you find the ones you want look around at the used book swap sites online and the used book fairs that homeschool groups usually have each year.

Check out my San Antonio Home schoolers page above for ideas on the yearly Curriculum fairs for my area or at least get some ideas.

If you would like a "Card Pack" from "The Home School Connection" they will send you it via snail mail to your home address for free. In it you will find tons of homeschool related products. "Click Here" to fill out the form. To look at vedors on line go to their website at

If you buy it new plan to use it for your other younger kids someday that would make a good investment or plan to sell it to get some of your money back. When buying from auctions make sure you know the orginal price before you start bidding, this way you wont over pay for used books. Start early looking for these to get ahead of the Aug/Sept school rush.

Buy it used from friends, book swaps, flea markets, thrift stores, library book sales
Have a book swap day with your homeschool group
Share with another mom that has the same age children as yourself
Form a coop or at least just a class and pitch in and buy the book/subject
Do you have connections with a public school teacher. Each year they get sample books to go over to see if they want to buy it for their class. If they don't then ask them for it.
Try finding your stuff on ebay: Just keep in mind how much it orginally cost so you wont get into a bidding war with another mom-have a set amount you will spend on it, bid at the last few min of the sale to grab it, keep in mind the cost of shipping, If you dont win ebay will email you other items similar to the one you lost, or look at the persons other items listed he/she might have the same item again up for bid at another day!

Yahoo groups used book- Join these to help you find used books

Main websites for book exchanges and used books
Veggie group Love it! –Look under swap-
Home School Classifieds-
The Swap-small fee to insert -
Homeschool Bid -Just like Ebay-
This little Piggy stas home online auction
Well trained mind forum

Regular sites for clearance sales
Christine book love their catalog

If your in the San Antonio area try
San Antonio online garage
San Antonio free cycle
San Antonio freely given
San Antonio Educational Book Swap

If your looking for something specific in a subject like history, math, English you can try my Haven Homeschool group link pages where I will be adding on through time. You don’t have to join the group to access the links

Create your own curriculum that can be down with help from the library and other resources on line check out my unit studies and printable pages.


Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Another long day

This cloud was a while back and our last hint of rain...sigh....
We picked up the girls today from camp, the mother of my daughters friend and I went in her car to pick them up and boy was it hot.

Recently I bought a thermos from Walgreens. I love it, I bought it for $12 its thin and keeps water cold for hours even when left in the car in the sun. I have decided to buy 3 more slowly when I have the money.

Speaking of money I have been really depressed lately with not having enough to buy the stuff I need. I am blessed we bought the corn while we did at $7 for 50lb bag because in two weeks it went to $8.90. I am worried about the feed for the turkeys that are coming in early in the morning tomorrow. We calculated the price of turkeys based on feed, but if it goes up we will get a loss.

We just don't have the money right now to buy excess like we did with the corn...worry ,,...worry. I need to rebudget my own budget for my household account to see where I can cut or sale something. I did to really hit the coupons. The only thing is selling right now is my eggs and my husband wants me to raise my prices sigh.....I am scared I will lose my customers. I tried so hard to keep it low the price for eggs but the feed keeps going up.

We also need to redo our whole budget as a whole. I need more for grocerys it keeps going up on food.

Well enough worry for tonight need to sleep another long day tomorrow. Tommy takes his test "Crosses fingers" I hope he passes.


Tuesday, July 15, 2008


Dad with the crawdad

Its hard to see but I was walking to my car one day and saw this crawdad staring back at me and boy was he mad kept trying to pinch me. It was too cute. My dad the expert of course picked him up put him in that thing above then dropped him off at the canal. Too bad a few more of these we could have had a nice meal hahaha

There has been teenage boys the last few days at the canal I imagine that is what they are trying to find in those muddy water. Well just a few more days left for my sons swimming class, and tomorrow I go pick up my daughter from camp. I know she wished it would have been a bit longer. I hope she had a good time.

I pulled some cucumbers from my garden I am finding out a lot of things hide from me lol I didnt even know they were done. Its been really hot over here but not that hot where I am hating it already. I am going to advertise for our lamb in our homeschool group newsletter in San Antonio but I missed the deadline for this month. I need to sell 13more sheep, I am sure the older customers might want some more. I am at loss where to sell them now. I love the advertising side of this I did this really well in College when I took a class in it I made a "A"

There was always a waiting time for the lambs but now this year we had more then are current customers needed so we need to find a way to reach the newer ones. Our turkeys are on there way too. So far I have only sold 4 out of 30. Feed keeps going up I hate that because then the cost of our product has to go up.

Well its late I need to sleep

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

First Strawberry Jams

I made my first jams today, it was pretty easy I opened one up the next day pretty tasty I was worried about putting in too much honey that it would overwhelm the strawberrys but as I cooked it the taste of honey went away more. I had 4 basket full of strawberrys about 9 cups. I added fresh apples from our own apple tree, and our own honey. I also added some lemon juice.
I figured with not the cost of the jars it was $1.00 a jar to make. I will try it with toast tomorrow to see how well it came out and most important to see how my Tommy likes it. I made it for him mostly. Tired of the jellys at the stores that has so many perservatives in it.

The book up top is the cookbook I used. Hubby actually got it for us, it has small recipes in it for small amount of canning, I like it a lot so far.

Well today was a good day, we got an another inch of rain which means total in the last three days we got 1 1/2 inches of rain yah! The chicks of course got wet the ones that ventured outside but they were ok. I had a heck of a time getting them into the coop tonight they were so lost. I hope the hawks stay away.

Earlier we took Tommy to his swim lesson, Tom went with us I was very pleased to see him take part of our daily routine. I got a hold of a riding instructor in a town near us. Not sure on the ride up there but she is offering english riding lesson. I would like my daughter to take it again, she really loves horses.

We will see on the lessons she heads off to camp next week, so we have to get her stuff ready for it plus buy her a new bathing suit amoung other money...

Hubby goes back to work tomorrow he had a nice 5 day vacation. He's big boss CEO is asking maybe because of the gas prices of people willing to work from home. We are excited about this, it will be adjustment hahaha but it will be good on gas. Tom is going to hint again that he would volunteer for the new project on working from home. "Cross fingers"

We had gotten a booster for our attenena and it works great for our computer now the speed is really fast, of course my computer is the same but we are trying to figure out a way to hook mine up during the day when Tom is not using it. I will miss my dining room though this is where I currently have it. I guess I like it cause its the hub of the house smack in the middle I can see and know all :)

Well I have to wash dishes and take a shower still, tomorrow is egg/milk run so it wil be busy. Dad is taking Tommy to his swimming lesson so he wont miss it while Randy and I deliver eggs. I am debating on making Randy go with them to help.

Got to run


Sunday, July 6, 2008

Garden update July 6

Ok so if you really look from the last time I posted my green beans have gotten thicker. Lots of flowering on them but no green beans yet. I am not sure when to pick the cucumbers the last time I did it was too early.

No more rain today but it kept pretty cool outside. I put the last of my chicks with my chickens today I had a total of 73 chicks, Somehow I am missing 8 of them. One of them heads was bleeding I guess he was getting picked on so I put him in one of the rabbit cages and put some no pick lotion on him. I will give him a few days to let it scab over then put him back with the others.

I will have to keep watch over them they don't want to leave the big coop just yet.

We went to dairyqueen today my family and my dad to go get some icecream after dinner then we picked up some videos it was a nice outing out with the family. Love dairyqueen. The HEB here is trying to buy them out so they can build a super HEB. I hope they don't buy them out because I will miss Dairy Queen.

I take my son back to swimming lessons again starting tomorrow I hope he learns even more on how to swim he is taking to it a lot more then my daughter did he's age. Not much more going on I am hoping to make some strawberry jam tomorrow. Hubby is home again tomorrow its a 5 day vacation for him he sure does need it.


Friday, July 4, 2008

Salsa time

So what do you do when you get a deal on a box of tomotoes? Well I could have freezed them but instead we got my mothers recipe out and made some salsa. Of course I had to go get some more jalapenos I didnt have enough and I had to buy some more jar seals.

It came out really, really hot. My husband must have been mad at me hahaha. There is a saying in my family when my mother would make some salsa and if it came out really hot she was really mad at my dad. So when it did we would say, "Gosh mom you must have been mad at dad when you were making this hahaha"
My husband has my moms recipe sort of.....she made it with him once and he wrote it down. My husband said I could never divorse him because he has all my mothers recipes :)

Well I hope everyone had a happy 4th of July. We worked our rears off today but most holidays we do.
Farm Life I moved 20 chicks into the main coop today. We will see how they survive with the older chicks. Tomorrow night we put in more till they are all out there. This is where I might lose half my chicks to predators sigh...

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Time to Cull the Sheep

It was that time of year again where we culled our sheep, tagging and putting the rubberbands around ummm lets say private parts of the male :)
Dad and Tom are above in picture with one of our rams. For two days they just lay down as much as possible, poor things. We do it so they can't mate and also it gives a better taste to the meat.
My dad took a fall that day but luckily the sheep broke his fall so he fell on a fluffy sheep then rolled off of him. It was sort of funny watching it I wished I had a video camera at the time it sort of happened slow motion and I keptt saying, "Dad let go!" but my dad still on the ground said, No I got it!, I got it! holding on to the lamb hehe ---No animal or father was hurt making this scene :)
Not much going on its been cool here the last two days with storms trying to come in but they wont even spit at us. Another sheep died out in the field, something is getting them at night. We put them in the orchard for now. Hopefully that will help.
Tom spent a few nights all night outside but what ever it was never came to attack. My neighbors are having trouble too and got some of theirs killed. I am thinking its a cougar or big bob cat or even a big wild dog. There is no wholes in our fence so its jumping a 4ft fence.
Well got to go take shower and get ready for bed.

Sunday, June 29, 2008


Today we got together two of my sisters, my dad and my own family to have a lunch/dinner. It has been one year today since my mother passed away. It was sad but nice at the same time to be with family and laugh and talk about my wonderful mother. I miss her so much still.
Mary my sister made this pork rib/pototoe dinner and I made the salad, Becky paid for it all. Above is the tomotoes I used from my dads and my garden, they were so good.
Tommy passed his swimming level 1 test with the Red Cross. We are so proud of him I enrolled him right away into the 2 level class. What did I get myself into! hehe Got to be there at 10:30 for two weeks again....sigh.....I want him to be a good swimmer. I had a dream once that he drowned in a friends pool so this is really important to me too. I can still feel the heart ache from that dream still. He loves it. I wouldnt push him if he didnt like the class.
We have had two sheep die on us. Something is killing them. Tom is going out tonight to sit out there for a bit. Bobo was out in the field this morning we are thinking it was either him or something that killed the sheep then Bobo went after them. My neighbors had their sheep killed and I know Bobo can't get into their place so Bobo is still not the top suspect.
Well not much more today, its really late and we have to cull the sheep tomorrow.

Monday, June 23, 2008

Garden update June 23, 2008

Just wanted to update my garden today the green beans have reached the top and are falling over the other side now looking really good still. The other picture is of my pototoes, its a good thing I read that when they start to die on top they are nearly done otherwise I would have thought they were dieing hahaha. I need more tomotoe stakes I am going to Hondo this week so I can pick me up some if they still got them.

Been a great week can't complain. Family, my farm animals doing ok even in this 90 degree heat but I am not complaining when other people temps are higher or flooding. We are blessed.

Tommy might be sick he is moaning in his sleep I gave him some cough cold meds. He was in his pool all day I told him not to drink the water from the pool but since he was a toddler will he listen? sigh....we still have a week of his swimming lessons left I hope it blows over tonight but I doubt it.

Not being motivated this week I really need to pull myself together to do things around the house its getting messy again. If I can keep the living room/kitchen and dining room clean I am happy. The bathroom needs big time cleaning.

Well the VBS is not happening at our church and when I found another one close in San Antonio its happening at night! Whats with these night classes? Don't they realize the kids need to get to bed early. I am a bit disapointed but in a way its a blessing so we wont be so booked up this week with milk/egg run one two dentist appt and now a doc appt if Tommy dont get well its going to be a rushed busy week.