Sunday, November 29, 2009

School Pictures

Since J is home schooled, we make different plans when it comes to school pictures. In the past, I have been taking the girls to Walmart for photos in early December. We call them "Birthday Pictures" because I have tried to get a professional photo done around their birthday each year. Walmart has done a decent job in the past, and they have a huge package of photos at a great price. Last year, however, they would not let me purchase 2 packages, so that I would have pictures of each girl. Instead, I had to pick the sizes individually, and the total price ended up being some where around $70. We paid our wedding photographer $100 long ago when we were married, and that included the negatives. You might get the idea that I am somewhat of a're right.

This year, JP suggested that we take our own photos of the girls. Shutterfly came through yesterday with coupons for $10 off AND free shipping. Today was photo shoot day.

Here are the girls...

...a candid of Mommy, J & L...

...and for JP's buddy in Iraq, here's one of the whole gang!

Friday, November 27, 2009

snow, snow, snow, snow, SNOW!

J had a friend sleep over last night. They were up bright and early this morning to watch "White Christmas"...just as it started to snow the first snow of the season!

This is a shot from our deck, where we recently got the dinner bell hung.

All the girls were so excited, they dressed warm and went outside to play in it!

Thursday, November 26, 2009

The Other White Meat

I have been a collector of pig figurines and all things pig for over 15 years. It all started back in college when my friends began giving me pigs because when I laughed REALLY hard, I snorted. (Either I learned to control this as I matured, or, sadly, I don't laugh that hard any more.)

I have no problems collecting and displaying cute little piggies AND eating delicious pork products...bacon, sausage and ham are chief among them.

Kali, however, seems to be having some trouble keeping things straight. One of her favorite chew "toys" is a pig ear, but today she ate the ears off my giant plaster piggy bank. I caught her with plaster still on her nose. Ho hum.

Of course, today we have some other white meat roasting in the oven. (And smelling delicious too, I might add!) We are looking forward to sharing it with a bunch of lovely people.

Happy Thanksgiving to all!

Sunday, November 22, 2009


I am finally posting from the NEW computer, and I used Photo Shop for the first time to edit photos, so the whole process is taking more than twice as long as normal. Whew!

Today was a beautiful day...apparently the last one we will have for a while. A winter mix of weather is headed our way, with snow forecast for Thanksgiving. L believes that as soon as it snows, her birthday is not far behind!

I wanted to post a few pictures of the lawn before it gets buried in snow. It is GREENING up nicely. There will be several bare spots and a bunch of holes thanks to the cattle, but the landscaper has promised to re-evaluate things in the Spring and fix them. Here is a shot of the front yard, taken from the driveway.

This picture shows our yard in the background, but in the foreground you can see Dad sealing the seams on his first floor decking. The OSB is painted a light GREEN to protect it from the weather. After some rain, Mom and Dad were able to see a few leaks in the basement. That did not stop them from unloading the PODS and the storage shed into there. Their basement/garage is much more organized than ours was when we moved. Hopefully it is more rodent proof as well!

This is their GREEN garage door. Dad made this door to fit the walk-through doorway. The doors and windows to be used on their house come in another shipment in the Spring.

Finally, a shot of Kali. She was to the vet on Thursday, and now weighs in at 13#. She is head and shoulders above Daisy Dog at this point! She likes to lie on clothes, so she slept on the dirty laundry for quite a while yesterday until I got around to putting it in the washer. Laundry is one of those things that just doesn't quit these days. That and the dishes and cleaning...

Friday, November 20, 2009

Happy Birthday, J-Bird!

Today my little girl turned 7 years old, which I am still trying to fathom. Her birthday celebration was small...just the family. This year she requested a cake that does not require me staying up until midnight decorating. I am both relieved and perplexed. Can she really be old enough to request regular birthday cakes?

She wanted a sock monkey SO BADLY. It was at the top of her Birthday/Christmas list.

Here are she and her sister...such sweet girls!

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Family Photos

As I write, I am once again hearing the gnawing and scampering of rodents above my head. I can't believe they are back!

In other news, we made the shortest trip ever to VA over the weekend to visit (ever-so-briefly) with JP's family. He and his 3 sisters went through boxes and boxes of old pictures. Here are a few of the gems:

This lovely couple is JP's grandparents, around the time of their marriage in May of 1915.

This picture was marked 1959. Several of us think that L favors the girl on the left (who happens to be JP's oldest sister.)

This photo shows JP's father (on the left) with several of his siblings, and some sweet little peeps. JP's uncle believes this was taken to use as advertising for Shenandoah Wood Stoves.

While I am showcasing family photos, let me include this one of my aunt (my father's sister), my uncle and my Mom working on my parent's house...

and this one of my girls helping Mom celebrate her birthday last week...

...and my girls with 3 of their cousins...

...and finally, the newest member of our family in a quiet moment.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Making Hay While the Sun Shines

It has been a gorgeous weekend...temperatures in the 60's and 70's and plenty of sunshine. We have had all the windows open and had the opportunity to accomplish a lot outside.

Mom and Dad worked on their house from early in the morning until dusk most days this week. They have 2/3 of the floor joists in, and have started to put the first floor decking on the first 1/3. This is a picture taken from on their first floor. You can see by the "tractor poop" in the distance, that one of the neighbors was out making hay this weekend as well.

Last year it was 70* in November as well. They were putting the finishing touches on our garage right around this time. It is fitting to remember that now, because JP was working hard in the garage this weekend, and now it looks like this:

So now, by my previous statement, we are all moved in! This does not, by any means, mean that we are finished up here. That is an entirely different subject, and I doubt we will be finished for years and years.

I managed to get some things planted and cleaned and organized this weekend, along with the standard laundry, meals and dishes. JP, Mom and myself even had the chance to take in a play at the college last night.

It is quiet right now. L and Kali are sleeping, and JP and J are out sitting in the newly erected tree stand down by the spring. They are scoping for deer, not hunting of course, since it is Sunday.

We are soon heading out for a sea food dinner in honor of my Mom's birthday (which is next week). I will close with a photo of a gorgeous sunset on Poplar Ridge from last week.

Friday, November 6, 2009


If you look really closely, you can see our new yard growing!

Monday, November 2, 2009


Well, the cows were back Friday night. JP and I heard them at midnight and went out on the deck to yell at them, but they didn't move. JP ended up shooting twice into the air, which finally made them lumber off into the woods.

That was an incredibly redneck thing to do, I think: shoot at cows from your porch at midnight.

In any case, JP went to a couple of the neighboring farms the following day to try to find where the cows belong. At the first farm, Pandemonia Acres, they denied ownership of the cows, but oh by the way, we have 12 poodle puppies that are ready for new homes! He took the girls and I over later to look at them, so this is the way that we ended up with a registered standard poodle puppy last night!

She spent the evening last night sulking, whining and sleeping, but has been much more playful this morning. We call her Kali, which is a Hindi name meaning dark or black goddess. In one month we have completely doubled the number of bodies in our home!

I went shopping yesterday afternoon...we needed puppy chow after all (and I have been working on some sewing projects...more on that later). I actually remembered to take my reusable shopping bags into Target and they gave me 5 cents per bag off my bill!

On the way home, while listening to A Prairie Home Companion on NPR, I heard someone yodeling Ode to Joy...that was a first! Here is a link to it, just fast forward to 60 minutes.

It is time for school, so we need to get a move on. Just wanted to post a pic of the newest member of our family!

By the way, JP found the owner of the cows. He was out mending fences when JP stopped by. Apparently he hasn't finished yet, because they were back last night!