Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Baby Watch

Hello Blogland!

This will be a quick catch up. We are spending a little time in the public library waiting on the husband while he has a meeting. The public library is our internet access so that's when I can post!

We are still awaiting the arrival of our little granddaughter. She has now kept her mommy and daddy in suspense for an extra 12 days. What a blessed event her arrival will be. We can't wait to meet her!

In order to keep busy until that call comes we have 60+ pounds of apples to process. Our goal is to get them finished by Wednesday. The cooler, drier temps are moving into our little mountain town which will make the whole activity a delightful way to welcome the first days of autumn.

We have also started our fall cleaning. The husband took the week off so we can work together. The weather has cooperated beautifully. It is absolutely perfect for opening up the house and airing everything out. We started with the kitchen, dining and laundry rooms. They aren't that big people but it is taking us forever! Husband got down on the floor, pulled everything out of cabinets and cleaned them. We tossed the items we haven't utilized in the last year. We also started reorganizing. Seems like before pictures should have happened, but alas, my pride got in the way. 

I have this dream that we'll also get the storage room cleaned out before the husband goes back to work. Dreaming - it's a beautiful thing. We also have this small room we redid last year that has become a catch all for junk. It needs to be something cute rather than something crammed full!  It could be a sweet little playroom/reading room for grand babies. 

That is really what this is all about anyway. Fall cleaning/Grandparent nesting.. same difference right?




Wednesday, September 17, 2014

VB6 - A book review

Food - gotta have it. It's not one of those things we can just choose to do without. Our bodies need nutrition to survive. Sometimes I think it would be easier not to eat. Especially when you begin to consider all the different nutritional philosophies out there. 

For a very long time I've have some uphill challenges where my health was concerned. I was exhausted, sore, sick, overweight and generally depressed. Going to the doctor was frustrating me somewhat. They always offered anti-depressants or hormones, neither of which I was willing to take. 

Back to food. When researching options to get on the path to wellness food kept cropping up. In particular clean, plant-based (plant-strong) diets. The micro-nutrients in plants are little powerhouses for healing. I decided to give it a go. 

Here I am, about 11 months later, 47 lbs lighter, excellent heart rate, energy to spare, pain due only to the fact that I worked a little hard at the gym yesterday and loving my plant-strong diet! I'm no young whipper snapper either. I'm a 50+ year old woman who has grandchildren! You're never too old to start striving for better health.

Now, we still have a couple of kids at home and they are not as enthusiastic about a plant-based diet as I am, and I want them to love healthy food without having a huge fight on my hands.

Enter VB6 - Vegan Before 6 by Mark Bittman

Reading the press release gives you a pretty good idea of where the author is coming from. He follows a mostly vegan diet and in doing so has achieved excellent health. The recipes in his book are so appealing and delicious it's difficult not to get excited about adding more veggie power into your life! 

This is a wonderfully balanced approach to healthful eating. I highly recommend this cookbook to people who are not quite sure about going "all in" to the plant-based lifestyle but who are "vegan curious."  It's been a great book for our family since some are all in and some are not. 

Thanks for reading!
LouAnne

"I received this book from Blogging for Books for this review."
 

Sunday, September 07, 2014

Making a comeback


It's been a couple of years since I blogged.

There - I said it. I have confessed my transgression. If anyone is still following me it will be simply because you forgot to stop following but I am going to try to regain your favor. I will endeavor to blog items of interest - books I've read, sewing projects attempted (successfully completed or miserably failed), plant-strong menus, the quest for fitness, life with a middle schooler and elementary kids while also learning the ropes as a grandma.

Actually there will most likely be more. I'm a bit distracted and life comes through that way when blogging happens. Life can get a little messy in this neck of the woods but it's all good. The uphill, the level, the downhill.. it's all part of the journey.

Photos are always good, aren't they? I'll include some of those as well - as soon as I've conquered the wonderful point and shoot camera my sons gave me years ago. It's a nice camera and capable of much more than I ask of it. Going to try to learn how to ask more of it.

So who's with me? Give me another chance? It may not be a good excuse but I don't have internet at home any longer. The public library is my 'go to' for a connection. We do visit a couple of days a week so that's when the blogs go down.. er.. or up as the case may be.

Thanks for your time. See you soon.


Friday, April 26, 2013

Weeds





Ladies, there are weeds in my garden.

Looking out over last year's sadly neglected garden spot I noticed the over abundance of weeds growing. They are everywhere. Chickweed, Dandelion, Plantain and a host of others I can not name. Surveying the forsaken mess makes it difficult to believe it was ever anything other than a breeding ground for weeds. There is some relentless mint growing. I noticed some cucumber making it's appearance - and an onion. Must not forget the onion.



We had decided to allow this patch of garden to rest this year. We weren't going to tend it at all.

But growth doesn't stop. Even if you don't cultivate, plant and tend, the garden will still produce. It may not be what you want, but it will produce. It will look like a wild, haggard, forsaken place. It won't produce much food to speak of. Maybe a few volunteers here and there. Eventually they will be choked out by the weeds.

I can't help but feel a bit sad.

It was a decision to allow this particular ground to fallow this year but it makes me think of a different garden - a garden we can never allow to fallow. There are weeds there as well. Sometimes you don't realize how prolific they have become until much time has passed. Sometimes the weeds are insidious, waiting a while to present themselves. To catch them you must look below the
bountiful growth of healthy plants before they do their worst.



This can be an overwhelming thought. It's enough to make the thought of gardening completely repulsive. Until you realize an important truth - the most blessed news of all. We may think we are the main gardeners, but we're not. There is a Master Gardener who never misses anything. If weeds are growing even those can be used to our benefit. Dandelion, chickweed and plantain are edible and full of health promoting properties. Our fruit may not be beautiful in the fallow season but the ground beneath is being fed with important nutrients that will aid in future harvests.

He will work all things together for good - for the benefit of our garden.

I need to remember that today.








Monday, February 25, 2013

Sunday, September 09, 2012

School Room 2012



This year we needed to completely revamp the school room. Both kids needed a larger desk (they grew like weeds over the summer!) and books needed to be removed so new books could be added. It turned into a 4 day project, even though we didn't paint or do major reno! It was in desperate need of re-organization. I should paint. There's much that could be done, but for now.. this is the room.

Our daughter's desk has the computer on it since she will be using that some this year. 

Opposite side of the room.

Our son's desk.

It may not be a "dream" school room, but I'm pretty happy with the way it turned out. I feel fortunate to have a separate space for schooling. Not pictured is the window and my chair that's in front of the window. 

That's it! The abbreviated tour. :)

Monday, September 03, 2012

A List

I will blog again some day. Good Lord willing and the creek don't rise!

Until I do here's a list:
*Our hens just started laying eggs. Well, should say "egglets." They are always so tiny when they first start laying. Isn't it cute?? I have really short fingers so the egg looks bigger than it is. This one was only about 1 1/2 inches tall.


*Actually did a little bit of canning this summer and hope to do more in the Autumn. Lots of yummy pickles on the shelf thanks to a friend who had a prolific cucumber harvest!


*I learned to make ice cream with our Vitamix. We made these on National Ice Cream Sandwich Day. Yes, there is such a thing. These were made with homemade almond milk and organic, soy free chocolate chips.


*Our little apple tree produced a few apples this year... seven to be exact. They are granny smith and one of these years we may have enough for a yummy apple pie!


*This summer my daughter started learning to sew. I think she is doing very well. I found her a used machine last year and she is enjoying using it.


*I did a little sewing over the summer too. One project was to make "not paper towels." They turned our pretty well, but putting them back on the roll after using/washing them was kind of a pain. So now they are folded and stacked. They are handy though.


*We're taking our first ever family beach vacation later this month. First ever!

*I sold my grain mill and Bosch Concept 7 mixer.. getting out of the bread making business. If I ever do need to grind grains our Vitamix will do the job.


*Trying a new curriculum this year. First packaged curriculum we've tried in a bunch of years. Excited about it. Also pretty thrilled that a friend is selling me her used curriculum at a reduced price! What a blessing!


*Our family grew by one this summer. A little Yorkie pup joined our ranks. He likes green smoothies.


*I made him some belly bands because he's the most difficult dog I have ever tried to house break. Seriously difficult. Good thing he's adorable.


And last, but certainly not least...

*I'm going to be a Grammy this year. Our son and his wife are expecting their first baby in November.  We don't know if it will be a boy or girl as they want to be surprised. I love that! Can't wait to meet little him or her. :)


Thanks for reading my list. :-)