Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Busy, Busy, Busy

Now I know why our foremothers (aha! new word?) passed down the tradition of "spring" cleaning--because there's NO time to do it in the summer. Sheesh!! I think this is the busiest we've ever been. There's just so much to do!!

My husband toiled in the backyard all spring, preparing the earth to reap a harvest of vegetables. He planted cucumbers, squash, tomatoes (for days), okra, an assortment of peppers, watermelons, and cantaloupe. I am a little ashamed to say that I did not assist very much in the actual planting, but I am about to dive in head-first with the preservation of all this luscious bounty. We're getting bucket loads of tomatoes, a good bit of peppers, and a few cucumbers.

There's a major obstacle in the process of "canning" for me. I have no kitchen. My kitchen has literally been gutted out, in the process of getting a total makeover. Am I excited? You bet I am!! SH put down a gorgeous tile floor, and the brand new sheetrock will soon be ready for a coat of paint--color not yet decided. Then the cabinets will be installed. In the meantime, we're relying on crock pots, microwave, and griddle to prepare our meals. But has anyone ever "canned" with any of the above appliances?? :0)

I am determined to conquer this challenge with a smile! Today, I shall prepare a large cucumber salad with the vegetables extracted from the garden last night, and chill it in the fridge. It might be something I make and distribute among our neighbors. Neighborly, ain't I?

5 lbs. cucumber
1 lb. bell pepper
1 lb. tomato
1 lb. onion
2 tbsp. salt
1 1/2 pts. water
1 1/2 pts. vinegar
1 c. sugar
1/2 c. vegetable oil
Combine first 4 ingredients. Chill. For dressing, mix all ingredients well. Chill until ready to serve.

John also made 3 bottles of pepper sauce last night with cayenne, banana peppers, and jalapenos. I just hope the squash and okra can hold off until we can get into the kitchen. Any ideas??

Back to the busy-ness part. We will stay that way with the kitchen and the produce, and then we have our very first family vacation planned for July 4th. We'll be heading to Hot Springs, AR, to stay in a cabin on Lake DeGray. I have to prepare an itinerary for the weekend. I have a hairbow order to fill (which I'm majorly late with). We are all needing to see the dentist. I have yet to send our camera off to the repair shop. I have to get our dining table refurbished/replaced before the warranty runs out. When we return from the vaca, we'll go right into campmeeting at a local church. Then it's John's birthday. Then it's Emma's 1st birthday (unbelievable). Then it's back to Alabama for campmeeting. Then John goes back to school!!! Panic! Don't panic. Breathe. Smile. Be organized. Plan ahead. Get through it. Enjoy it. :)

Friday, June 19, 2009

Happy Birthday, Gracie!!

My Baby Girl turned 3 last Sunday, the 14th.

Monday, we had her a little party with her cousins and friends in Alabama. I hope to have her another one here in Louisiana when my kitchen is finished.

I can't believe she is 3! Three!!

Sometimes I wonder if she & Elijah really got to be babies. They were so close together, only 17 months, and I did a lot of things for my convenience. For one, Grace wasn't rocked; I trained her to lay down and go to sleep on her own. So now, if she asks to be held or rocked, I stop and do that for a few minutes, because she is not a baby anymore!

She makes me smile every day with her expressions, her hand gestures, and her love of singing. Just this morning, she was singing, "Hide it under a push-up, no!" (the correct lyrics are "hide it under a bushel, no!").

I think it's OK to celebrate her birthday twice, since she is extra-special!

Wednesday, June 17, 2009


Ever feel like your world is?

I do.

Every now and then I go through a period of discontentment, a time when I seem to focus on all the negatives around me and miss the positives. God has a way of redirecting my point of view.
I was talking to a friend last night, kind of crying on her shoulder, or venting, or however you want to put it.

When I finally finished spewing it all out, she asked, "Have you heard about ____?" (our mutual friend, a wonderful Christian and Mom in her mid-30s). "She found out last week she has a brain tumor."

Suddenly, my problems seemed so petty.
My complaints so immature.
And I was ashamed.
I guess that was the Lord's way of "taking me out to the woodshed", so to speak.

My backside is still hurting :).