Monday, November 30, 2015

A month in review - November

This month we:
  • Got to see a giant white tiger
  • Cyan and I walked 11 miles with our dogs
  • received a pair of snake skin in the mail (and I touched it!)
  • looked at sand under a microscope
  • took walks in the falling leaves
  • the first frost finally took out the last of our garden
  • but not before we got a last batch of peppers and 1/2 ripe tomatoes
  • bought 4 more hens (making 13 total)
  • Luke got very sick so we read most of Milne
  • Figured out we could live in blanket scarves
  • visited the fish hatchery

November is over and Advent is almost here!


Thursday, November 05, 2015

Homeschool – Glow-in-the-dark books and making a indoor campfire

This sweet and safe indoor campfire is a craft I used in my homeschool co-op for my preschoolers and kindergarteners this week and it was a huge hit!  We sat around a circle while I read books that glow-in-the-dark, told camp stories and drank cocoa that I smuggled in.  It was wonderful!

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This craft (which is incredibly simple) could be used for any number of winter studies…  to read books by on the winter solstice, to give some weight to a fun, nocturnal animal study, or like I did – to talk about the upcoming time change with little ones.  A fun and SAFE idea that they will remember for a long, long time.

Monday, November 02, 2015

Healing – Elderberry Licorice Cough Syrup

October is a hard month in our household.  It seems as soon as we start school we pass one thing or another through the house like wildfire.  I have been sick now for 3 weeks straight.  Nothing terribly serious…. just a cold, and then a mild flu, and then a cough and cold mix that has hung on like an angry wolverine….  I generally just wait these things out, but sleep is essential for healing bodies, and when our sleep is interrupted by a cough, I have to do something.  That is where this recipe came in.

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Elderberries are a perfect immune system booster.  Filled with tons of Vitamin C** these little purple-black beauties are an amazing.  Mixed with licorice root, which helps with sore throat and coughing, this is the super food syrup which is sure to speed up the recovery process and help you sleep… at least it did us!

Sunday, November 01, 2015

Month in review – October

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This month we -

  • Picked pumpkins
  • carved pumpkins
  • dipped leaves in beeswax
  • ALL of our hens started laying!
  • Created an office
  • Participated I a fish seine – (drag net catch)
  • Made leaf roses
  • made and sent our nature pal exchange box
  • Took a couple amazing walks!
  • The rains came
  • whittling chip for Logan
  • Vet tech shadow for Cyan
  • First playdate without siblings for Luke

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It’s getting darker, but we have many wonderful things planned for Novemeber!

Friday, October 30, 2015

{this moment}

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{this moment} - A Friday ritual. A single photo (two this week) - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember.

{Inspired by SouleMama}

{this moment}

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{this moment} - A Friday ritual. A single photo (two this week) - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember.

{Inspired by SouleMama}

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Handcrafted Holiday - how to make a beeswax leaf garland

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My favorite color is… October.  Seriously.  Every October, as the giant maple tree that shades my yard changes from deep green to yellow to orange and red and then tumbles to the ground, I just can’t help but think that I want to keep those colors forever.  So I started researching ways to preserve these incredible leaves from my maple tree and discovered that dipping them in beeswax allows them to stay beautiful for months, sometimes years!  The color doesn’t stay around with drying or pressing but it you can seal it in by removing the oxygen from the leaves, sealing in the beauty of fall. 

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Friday, October 23, 2015

{this moment}

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{this moment} - A Friday ritual. A single photo (two this week) - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember.

{Inspired by SouleMama}

Thursday, October 01, 2015

Month in review–September

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This month we -

  • Started Co-op
  • Watched the full moon eclipse
  • started getting eggs from our youngest hens
  • picked apples, pumpkins, chard, kale, tomatoes and more than I can list!
  • Had a family of Stellar’s Jays move into our yard
  • took amazing walks
  • reveled in beautiful fall days
  • built nesting boxes for the hens
  • made the chicken run much larger
  • Got a bunny! 
  • Built a bunny hutch

September was incredible!  Now looking forward to an amazing October!

Thursday, September 10, 2015

Beet Spice Cake – The Healthy Version of Spice Cake!

This cake is the most light and fluffy cake I have ever made with beets.  I was trying to get a good recipe together for a ‘red velvet’ cake that included no dye and this was the result.  It wasn’t NEAR as red and I thought it was going to be!  It was so NOT red, that my family all thought it was a pumpkin spice cake until I told them what was in it.  Even the beet-hating husband enjoyed this one!

It must have been the fact that this was the last of the beets?  Or the fact that I threw away quite a bit of the boiling water because I dripped peach jam (that I was making at the same time) into it and had to refill the pot to finish cooking the beets….  But for whatever reason, this cake doesn’t look like beet cake.  It doesn’t taste like beet cake.  But trust me, there are 3 cups of beets in this cake! 

Tuesday, September 08, 2015

Kitchen Reveal–DIY Light and Bright Kitchen Remodel

I love my new kitchen!!  This kitchen has magically transformed (over the past two years) into something that I look at from the doorway and I sigh.  My kitchen has always been overwhelming wood tones.  The walls were mustard yellow, the cabinets were deep oak, and the floor was wooden parquet flooring, and the appliances were dark chocolate brown of the 1960’s.   It was dark dark dark!

So now lets show some before and afters… because I know everybody loves those.

After an oven fire one day, I pulled this stove (below) out to find charred wood and a space that no oven after 1970 would fit.  So instead of trying to fit a newer model into this same tiny space, I took a circular saw to the cabinets.  Definitely the ‘road less taken’ but in the end, the payoff was huge!  It did start a game of ‘If You Give a Mouse a Cookie’ proportions and lasted a full two years, but just check out the difference: