January

I’m not even sure where to begin. So much has happened since I last posted an update here. There isn’t really a short version either. There was sickness, joy, sadness, loss, hope, and so much more. With time, maybe I’ll be able to write about it all here but for now it’s just too fresh and painful.

sunrise1-14-17

God has been gracious through this difficult time to bless us with a very mild winter. We’ve had some snow and ice here and there but nothing that has stayed. I took the sunrise picture above on January 14th. As you can see there was no snow on the ground! The temps this month have been above freezing almost as often as they’ve been below. Usually we have at least a few days of -30F but not this year. The milkman said that people are already seeing robins and a man from church said people are tapping trees for maple syrup! Scott and the boys have seen several flocks of geese headed north, too. If God blesses us further with an early spring we’d be so very grateful. But if not we’ve made it almost all the way through January, spring is around corner.

Through the hardships of the last few months I’ve kept myself busy with crafting. I hadn’t really done any since Luke was born and I really missed it! I started on December 2nd by casting on a secret something for someone special. It’s almost finished and once it has been received I’ll share some pictures. This month I decided I wanted to learn to crochet. I had been taught how to chain as a child but never learned anything more. Then a year or two ago, my mom helped me make a dishcloth but again I didn’t pursue it. Late last year I found out about this Crochet School on Craftyminx.com. Earlier this month I finally got started learning some basic stitches and have a made a few small projects. The hot pad/pot holder has two layers and was a lot of fun to make. The crocheted edging on the knitted dishcloth was easy and quick to do. The basket is my favorite and is now home to one of my many spinning projects (which have also been sorely neglected over the last year and a half).

After going back and forth in my own mind about whether or not to read the Harry Potter series, I finally decided to take the plunge. I’ve been reading them while nursing Luke to sleep each evening. I have finished the first book and started the second. I’m enjoying them quite a bit. I actually cried on several occasions while reading the first book. I’m planning to watch each movie after reading the corresponding book. It will be interesting to see how alike/different the movies are from the books.

Crafting and reading – two of my favorite things to do! Now to make sure I keep making time for both before the wonderful craziness of spring and summer are upon us.

Yarn Along

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Spring Has Sprung!

It was a long winter. The weather was mild enough but we had our fair share of sickness, including a trip to the walk-in for Luke and one to the ER for me. We’re both doing well now, praise the Lord! From the middle of January through the whole month of February we didn’t get to church at all. Thankfully, we have made it the last 5 weeks in a row. It’s been such a blessing to get out of the house to worship and fellowship with our church family.

March was very mild in our part of the world. It was so refreshing to get outside to enjoy the fresh air and sunshine. I even spent some time working in the garden with a few of the children! We got all the raised beds cleaned out and some cardboard laid down in one bed to try and kill some grass that is coming up. We bought seeds early in the month. It’s been hard holding off on getting them in some soil but I did finally get some planted last night. I planted peppers, tomatoes, some herbs, and some flowers. I’ll be planting lots more as the weeks go by.

KODAK Digital Still Camera

Our garden area is fairly new. It took us several years to realize we needed to create raised beds if we were ever going to get much of a harvest. Clay soil that is often saturated all spring made it impossible to get a garden planted in a timely fashion. The garden is a work in progress. We’ll be adding two new beds where the red arrows are pointing. It’s a far cry from gardens we’ve had in the past but I’m thankful for what we do have.

I’m so excited about gardening, permaculture, and expanding our homestead that all my reading has been on these subjects. Five Acres & A Dream The Book by Leigh Tate has been very interesting. Leigh and her husband are on a small acreage in Virginia where they are  creating a self-sufficient homestead. You can read more about Leigh’s adventures here, 5 Acres & A Dream The Blog. I also got a new to me copy of The Encyclopedia of Country Living by Carla Emery. I bought a copy of this book nearly 20 years ago when I was still living with my parents and unmarried. I had a desire even then to live the homesteading life and be married to a farmer. That copy finally bit the dust so I picked up a used copy. I recently found Carla’s daughter, Esther and her family, on YouTube! They are creating an off-grid, permaculture homestead in Idaho. I’ve been really encouraged and motivated by what they’ve shared. The most recent book I pulled out is Integrated Forest Gardening. Scott and I plan to use permaculture methods on our 6 acres in the southern part of the state. We’ve been researching and reading up on this subject for over a year now. This year we were actually able to start putting our plan into action! I’ll share more about what we’re doing in another post.

Spring is here and  I’m so ready!

Sammy Sunshine

Our precious baby boy is 8 months old today! It’s hard to believe his first birthday is just around the corner. The first few months after he was born were quite difficult. He was colicky and quite unhappy at times. You’d never know it now, though! He’s the sweetest, happiest, most sociable little guy. He is our sunshine after the terrible storm (of miscarriage). We are so blessed by and thankful for his presence in our lives!

Samuel

Yarn Along

For the first 5 months or so after our precious Samuel was born, I didn’t knit a single stitch. The closer we got to Christmas the antsier I got to make something with some sticks and string! So I chose a couple simple projects and got most of them done in time for gift giving. After Christmas, my needles sat idle again. Finally, in early February, I picked them up again and have tried to keep them busy for at least a few minutes every day. Here are the projects I’ve completed and one that is still a work in progress.

Scott & Leah 1732

My first project was a dishcloth. The All Washed Up cloth has become my new favorite. With an easy to memorize 4-row pattern repeat, it’s a quick and easy knit!

Scott & Leah 1735

The next project was another dishcloth. This was a mystery cloth from the Yahoo group Monthly Dishcloths. The owner of the group does two mystery knit-alongs a month, one at the beginning of the month and the other halfway through the month. I haven’t participated in quite a long time so this was a lot of fun!

Scott & Leah 1723

The last project is still a work in progress but has been really enjoyable so far. I’m making the Little House Shawl by Joanna Johnson for my oldest daughter. I’ve had the yarn for quite awhile with this pattern in mind and I’m glad to have finally started it! I have another skein of yarn in a variegated purple for my younger daughter. I think I’ll start hers as soon as I have finished this one. I’d like them both to be done for Easter! 🙂

 As for reading, I haven’t done much lately. When I have free time, I’d rather knit! I guess I need to learn to read and knit at the same time. LOL Anyway, the next book I’d like to read is 5 Acres & A Dream The Book: The Challenges of Establishing a Self-Sufficient Homestead by Leigh Tate. My husband, Scott, read the book and then he did an interview with the author on his radio show. He really enjoyed the book and I know I will, too. If you’re interested in reading Leigh’s blog, head over to 5 Acres & A Dream. I’m sure you’ll enjoy your time there and I bet Leigh would love to have some new visitors. 🙂

Yarn Along

For lots more knitting and reading inspiration, head on over to Ginny’s blog for the Yarn Along.

My New Endeavor and Lilla Rose’s February Clip

Happy February! I hope you’re all surviving this crazy winter we’re having. I’m thankful that each new day brings us closer to spring! It can’t come soon enough.

At the end of December I decided to jump into something I never thought I’d ever do. I become an independent consultant in a direct sales company! During my growing up years my mom sold Princess House, Tupperware, and Avon. Being a shy person, none of those kinds of jobs appealed to me. I had a hard enough time stocking shelves and running the cash register at a local farm market. LOL It’s just always been difficult for me to interact with people I don’t know.

Well, I’d heard a lot about Lilla Rose over the last couple years but I’d never actually tried any of there products. While thinking about Christmas and the gifts I wanted to give, I decided that I wanted to get each of our girls a Flexi-clip. A really great sale started on Black Friday and my consultant (now my upline) was offeringa Buy 3, Get 1 Free deal! I went for it and got some Flexis! I knew as soon as they arrived (and I secretly tried them on) that I wanted to be part of this company. So on December 27, 2013 I joined the Lilla Rose family! I was able to get started with a minimal investment all of which I was able to make back with my January sales. There are so many wonderful reasons for being with Lilla Rose but I’ll just name a few.

1. Enrollment kits start as low as $49.95!
2. You only need to sell or buy $29 worth of product per YEAR to maintain consultant status!
3. 30% discount on all product, all the time!
4. You can earn a minimum of 30% (and as much as 45%!) on every item you sell.
5. No inventory required! You can run your business completely online if you wish.
6. I’m having so much fun sharing these amazing products that are so fun to wear!

So there you have it! I promise not to make this blog all about Lilla Rose. I’ll make occasional posts about our Flexis of the Month and I’ll also share any sales.

With that said, I’ll introduce our February Flexi of the Month, Fantastic! What do you think? I think it’s so unique and quite different than anything I’ve seen from Lilla Rose before! And there are matching Hair Sticks! How cool is that? These items are only available while supplies last during February! If you want to see these or any of the other awesome items that Liila Rose offers, check out my website. And if you think Lilla Rose would be a good opportunity for you, feel free to send me an email at terrytribe(at)gmail.com.

LRFebFOTM

Hannah Sophia

A very sweet and special friend, Rebecca from Renaissance, left a comment letting me know she really wanted to hear about our newest baby blessing. She motivated me to at least get some pictures up. I’ll be writing up the birth story very soon, too. 🙂

Hannah Sophia (whose name means “gracious wisdom”) was born on July 14, 2010 at 11:18 AM. She weighed 9 lbs 14 oz (after a HUGE meconuim stool) and was 22 inches long. According to my EDD she was 9 days “late” but the midwife says she was closer to 40 weeks (meaning she wasn’t as overdue as we thought!) She was my first baby to still have vernix on her body! She nursed shortly after birth and has been a pro from the start! She’s such a joy and blessing! 🙂

Hannah getting ready to be weighed

Mama and Hannah shortly after birth

1 day old in the outfit my mom bought for her

2 days old in a hat I made for her

4 days old ~ Her first Lord’s Day laying on the blanket I made for her

34 weeks 1 day

I can hardly believe this pregnancy will be over in about 6 weeks and I’ll be holding our precious new baby in my arms! My pregnancy has gone really well so far and I’m so thankful. I’m praying that my blood pressure will remain normal and that I won’t have to deal with being GBS+ again. My other prayer is that this baby will be in a good position for labor and delivery. I’m not expecting or planning on a faster birth but not dealing with an internal fetal rotation (for a 4th time) would be such a blessing!

My next midwife appointment is on Thursday. I’ll be 34 weeks and 3 days along. At my last appointment I was measuring 5 weeks ahead. I’m interested to see what I measure this time. I had also gained 8 pounds in just 5 weeks putting me at 7 pounds over my starting weight. It looks like I’ve held steady without any weight gain over the last 4 weeks. My blood pressure was good at 120/78 or something like that, I can’t remember now. The baby is active and I just love feeling all his/her movements even though they get stronger by the day! He/She was posterior at my last appointment but is always changing positions. I never know where I’ll feel the next hiccups or kicks and squirms. I had Scott take a new picture a few days ago. I’ve not been as consistent with the pictures lately like I was earlier in this pregnancy. I’ll put up a picture from my pregnancy with Esther for comparison’s sake. I’ll try to make sure to post an update after this week’s appointment. We’re down to visits every 2 weeks now! 🙂

Picture taken 5/22/10 at 33 weeks 5 days

Picture taken 9/10/08 at 32 weeks