Baby’s Coming

My husband just took the kids down to the barn to play for a while and it just hit me hard that within three weeks we will have a new baby here again. I can’t believe it. I’m so excited! These past few weeks all I can think about is having the baby so I’m finding it hard to blog or sew or do much but a little cooking.

It seems that each pregnancy goes by quicker than the last one and each child hits their first year quicker than the last one. All through this pregnancy Matthew and I have been in a good anticipation about me getting pregnant with our fifth child because that will be a fulfillment of what we saw three years ago from the Lord – five children. Now we are praying for more by faith.

I have another ultrasound tomorrow to make sure Leah is head down. I will be 39 weeks the following day. I always felt that she would be born in October… we still have some days left so we’ll see. Little Leah sleeps more than any of the children I’ve had in my womb. I have a good feeling she will be a good sleeper after she is born. So far with these three children I’ve borne, they have all been sleeping through the night (until 5:30am) by twelve weeks. By six months our lives are really feeling quite normal.

Please pray that all does go well with the birth. The bleeding I’ve had concerns me as I am hoping it’s not placenta accreta where the placenta attaches to the c-section scar in my uterus (and the placenta is in the front). This causes bleeding through late pregnancy and hemorrhaging at birth as the placenta detaches from the scar, usually resulting in an emergency hysterectomy. I wish the doctor hadn’t have shared this with me because it is always there in the back of my mind. My midwife shared that if it’s the cervix (which I hope it is), I may have a really quick labor or bleed a lot. So, I am a little scared up front but my spirit is at rest with all that is before me. I just really have a feeling that I can’t shake that all will go very, very well. So, as long as I stay in God’s rest and not put my mind to such things I think I can be at peace throughout these last hours or weeks.

I may not be blogging anymore until Leah arrives so please be patient with me as I’m sure I will have plenty of new pictures of our newest daughter very soon. : ) May the Lord be with you.

Turkeys

Here is my favorite turkey. He is always the first to come near us, to puff all out, has straight legs for reproducing and is one of our largest of the three largest toms. I’ve just always liked him. So, we are going to keep this one for reproduction purposes to three of our hens.

Here are a couple or more pictures of this big guy.

Can you tell the difference between a hen turkey and a tom turkey?
See the hen in the background?

Homemade Vegetarian Pizza

Poor Matthew wasn’t feeling too well to his stomach last week so I made a vegetarian pizza instead of our usual. It was just as delicious and made for a nice change.

Here I rolled out some dough that I made earlier that day. When I first started making pizza a couple of years ago, I sure had trouble rolling out the dough and getting it on the pizza pan.

I usually just heat up some tomato paste with olive oil and Italian herbs on the stove for my pizza sauce. That way I can get it to the consistency I like. I like to slather the sauce on the sides of the crust too.

Added cheese. I received a large hole type cheese grater from Matthew’s mother a couple of years ago. It saves me time when shredding cheese for pizza.

Lots and lots of mushrooms. Yummy!
Next, I added green peppers, black olives, fresh garlic and onions. I then cooked it up and added fresh basil, tomatoes and topped it with parmesan cheese. Sorry, the cooked picture just didn’t turn out but you’ll have to trust me, it was delicious! We had no problems not having the meat on it this time.

Home Grown Turkey

Here is our first turkey we butchered out of our flock. My husband picked out a smaller one and he could barely fit in the pan. I don’t know what we’re going to do when he butchers one of our big boys. We raised the White Broad Breasted turkeys this year as they do not show any pin feathers and come out looking really clean as you can see for yourself. My husband does a wonderful job cleaning them. He just made a stainless steel table for the rest of the birds he will be butchering. I will try to get a few somewhat clean looking pictures of the procedure again this year (depending on when this baby will be born).

And how was the turkey? Absolutely delicious. Full of flavor and the gravy is nothing like you’ve ever had. We’re still enjoying turkey sandwiches now and I can’t wait to cook another one for Thanksgiving.

Fresh Collards

My husband picked these collards a couple of weeks ago to go with dinner. They are simply delicious. He shared with me that each night when he would put the birds away he would walk out to the garden and pick a little bit of a collard off with dew on it and eat it. I tried a piece and couldn’t get over how delicious it was. I almost didn’t want to cook them. We still can’t believe how different food tastes when you grow it yourself.

These are just a few of what we bagged up to freeze for the winter.

They are just as rich and green as the picture here.

Coming Up on a Year

Oh, how this year with Matthew went fast. Emotions well up in me that it went so fast and my baby is fast becoming a toddler. I have always wanted a son and God gave me such a beautiful child in heart and beautiful to watch him too. I sometimes can see him at the age of five or eight already. I can’t wait… to see him running through the yard or fields. I will so much enjoy watching him grow through his childhood and love that I get to be the loving mom he needs to help him develop into a good, young man one day. I believe a son really needs a good mother while a daughter really needs a good father. Oh Matthew, I will always cherish you as my little boy. I know it will go too fast so all I can do is love you each day. I’m so glad the Lord brought you into our lives. We love you so very much son.

Here baby Matthew is going to get his first real haircut. I think Daddy is looking forward to this. We always thought it would be at about 18 months but after I give him a bath he looks like a rooster in the back and top of his head. So, I guess it’s about time little Matthew.

All innocent looking and ready to go.

What’s going on back there?

Wow, this is neat stuff. I love the noise daddy’s toy makes.

This isn’t too bad!

All done and given back to mom. He was a good boy and did very good for his first haircut. I’m glad the change wasn’t too drastic. Daddy did a great job!

You Little Three Year Old

I really like the age of three. To me it’s when you start to get that first break. Elisabeth is finally softening down. Boy was she a hard child as a toddler. She makes all the others seem pretty easy so I guess that is good. I’m looking forward to sharing some things about the Lord with her this year and just watching her come to a greater place of maturity. She’s a sweetie and still so much of a baby.



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Free Strawberry Plants


A couple of weeks we drove to Westport and saw a sign that said, “Free Strawberry Plants”. Of course my husband wanted to stop and could you blame him? A very kind, older gentleman gave us two huge black bags of strawberry plants. He shared that they were picking over 5 gallons of strawberries a day and he just couldn’t keep up with it anymore. So, here are our strawberry plants all ready for next year. Looks like we will have a nice size field of them. I bet the kids will eat half of them!

Homemade Laundry Soap

Here is the 18 gallons of laundry soap I have been making for nearly 3 years now.

INGREDIENTS:
Three bars of Fels Naptha (Top Foods $1.59 per bar)
Washing Soda (Sodium Carbonate).
Borax Powder
Grate or chop up 3 bars of Fels Naptha. This has been around as a laundry bar for over 100 years now.

Melt on stove in 54 cups of water. This is the longest part but still only takes about 40 minutes.

Once melted add 4 1/2 cups of Borax powder. I paid about $4.50 for this 4lb 12 oz box.

Add 4 1/2 cups of Washing Soda (not baking soda). This is sodium carbonate. I bought this 50 lb bag for $19.00 nearly 3 years ago and still have lots of it left. You can find this at many pool supply places. It has a higher PH and gives your clothing a good cleaning.

Here I have it added to the Fels Naptha soap mixture. It dissolves in about 5 minutes. Make sure to stir it really good.

I had my husband transfer the mixture into our 22 gallon container we’ve been using. Now add 235 cups of water. Yes, 235 cups of water. We have a line on our big, black pot we used to melt this all together in that is 55 cups so we only have to fill a little over 4 times. Maybe use a milk jug as that holds 16 cups. Hopefully, you have something larger. Stir with a stick or something large several times a day for the next 12 hours or so or it will gel up.

We bought this 55 gallon barrel at an Ocean Spray cranberry factory for $3 last year. I asked my husband if he could configure it to hold our soap. We already took some out as you will see below but it looks like we will get nearly 3 batches in here. So, I guess I will be making another batch next week if I don’t have the baby by then.

Here are some of our gallon milk jugs filled with the soap from the barrel in the garage. It makes it very convenient for many months to come. The clothes wash wonderfully in this and smell so good. We’ve had no complaints about using this formula so far and the savings is phenomenal. We used to go through all 18 gallons in about 9 months. Now we are going through it pretty quick with all of the kids.

You can use as little as 1/4 cup of this detergent. We use a full cup though as we have kids playing on the farm and Matthew working with chickens, etc…