May 2014

May 2014

No matter where her owie is the band-aid goes on her face.

Nola Mae Band aids

 

In 4th grade the kids put on a “manufacturing day”.  They manufacture items to sell to the rest of the elementary school.  Robbie recycled crayons into Lego shaped guys and into flowers and stars and made stuffed monster faces.

Manufacturing day Lot

 

Manufacturing day Monsters

Manufacturing day table

We planned a last-minute picnic lunch with our moms for Mother’s Day.

Mother's Day photo 1

My mom stayed for the whole day, so we went for a bike ride with my mom, Robbie, with Henry on the tag-along and Nola Mae in the Burley.

Mother's Day photo

Robbie’s class had a field trip to Madison.  We rode a hot steamy bus together for a total of 5 hours, I quilted for 4.5 of those hours while visiting with him and got a little cuddle time after a long day.

Madison bus w Robbie

 We toured the capital.

Madison Capitol

 

We went to the Wisconsin Historical Museum  – a beautiful place!   I was impressed by how much Robbie had learned in school before this trip.  When we toured the Capitol the kids already knew a lot about the history of our state and about what happens in the Capital.   I first realized this when we were at the museum, Robbie and I walked into a section about Aztalan.  As soon as he saw this area he said, “Oh!  Aztalan, I know all this!”   I pointed out that we need to appreciate this stuff and we needed to walk around and look at all the cool tools in person, not just in books!

While I was on the field trip, Jack stayed home with Henry and Nola Mae.   He took these photos:

Madison H & NM

 Jack finished planting 175 trees this month with Henry’s help.

Jack's day planting trees

 They worked on firewood and made a big pile in the woods.  Henry told me the pile took a lot of work because it is taller than him.

Jack's day firewood

Charlie & Nola Mae soccer

Piano Henry & Nola Mae

Robbie and I met Jack and the kids at piano lessons.  During Robbie’s lesson we walked around town.  I was there when Jack took this photo of Charlie.

Iola Charlie bench

When I was looking at photos from this day I knew this is one I wanted to include in my blog and save in my memory forever!  Because he is looking directly at me, giving me a look I don’t see very often: “love”.  He is the boy that seems to dislike me the most.   I wasn’t talking about candy, minecraft, ice cream, or legos.  We were just looking at each other.  I was thankful for Jack being there because I could hear him taking pictures of something during this look between me and Charlie and I was hoping it was of Charlie.

Iola Little Shivers

 

 We had a rummage sale during our town’s city-wide rummage.  It was a one day sale for us, with constant people coming from 7:30 am – 3:30 pm.  I thought it was worth it and very successful.  But there was still a lot of stuff left.   I was able to invite a few friends over to take one last peek.  Then I loaded it all up and took a full car load to St. Vinnie’s in Plover.

St Vinnie load 1

St Vinnie load 2

St Vinnie load 3

This small load went to friends who couldn’t come check out my stuff but had a “wish list”.

St Vinnie load Friends

We were talking about going on a bike trip and Nola Mae found all our bright-colored biking vest and put them on and told me she was ready.

bike Tomorrow river trail getting ready

 Jack took many pictures and even put together an awesome video from our bike trip on the Tomorrow River Bike trail from Amherst to Scandinavia.

bike Tomorrow river trail

 My mother-in-law would say, “there is some kind of learning going on here.”  These were very old and stale taco shells I found in the cupboard.  I had them on the counter and Nola Mae brought the stool to the counter, pulled out the potato masher and just started mashing them.  It kept her busy while I did my stuff and the mess wasn’t too bad.

Nola Mae potato smasher

 She asked for this “hair band aid”, honestly, it wasn’t my idea!

Nola Mae 1st ponie tail

 Henry and Nola Mae were in the yard getting blankets and books ready for reading in the shade.  Henry came into the house and asked me if he could take the camera outside to take a picture of Nola Mae being cute.  This is one of his photos.

Nola Mae

 My car was in the repair shop last week.  The day it was ready to come home Jack drove the truck to his friend’s house and got a ride the rest of the way to work.   Henry and I biked 10 miles to their house to pick up the truck.  If I was thinking ahead I would have put Nola Mae’s car seat in the truck, instead we had to pack it in the Burley.  Henry talked the entire way,  peddled hard up and down the hills, especially when a scary dog came after us.

Bike to Big Falls Gene's

 

Bike to Big Falls Picnic

 

 We couldn’t pass Big Falls without checking out the water and

Bike to Big Falls Water H

 getting our feet wet.

Bike to Big Falls Water NM

We had a little extra time before the boys got home from school to drive to the neighboring sawmill for some bark mulch – $40 for a truck load.  I think I could have gotten a better deal if I planned a head and went when the guy I know was working.

Wood chips

 Nola Mae and I took  a short trip to Milwaukee for my cousin’s baby shower.  I made her this ring sling this winter, dyed it with snow, Flamingo Pink and Sunflower Yellow (Dylon Dye).

snow dye ring sling pink & yellow snow dyed pink & yellow ring sling in action

Nola Mae and I had a wonderful visit with my Dad and Step-mom, Lynn.

Dad's swing

Dad's Marbles

 We went for a walk and Nola Mae found a dead bird.  Against my Dad’s suggestion she still picked it up and looked at it.

Dad's dead bird Nola Mae

Dad's yard pole Nola Mae2

Dad's yard pole Nola Mae

The boys will be done with school on June 12th.  I am pretty excited about the things we will do this summer.  I have plans for everyone to make a “wish list” of the goals they have, the things they want to do, and where they want to go.

 

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September 2012 – Month 9

September 2012 – Month 9

Robbie found this cool stick (he is always finding cool sticks to swing around) at Iola Winter Sports Club on the day we were doing some trail clean up after a big storm.  It made him think of deer antlers.

robbie cool stick IWSC

Charlie made this wooden car in the workshop with Papa.

Nola Mae w Charlie's wooden car

I scored this Nordic Ware bundt pan at a rummage sale for $1.  We needed a reason to try it out, Susie’s birthday cake!

cake castle susie

And the boys decorated it.

cake castle susie decorated

Nola Mae has decided that she can go down the stairs forward.

Nola Mae stairs

She often gets comfortable in the upside down stool.  I wonder how long this will last.

stool nola mae

Something gross…someone opened a gogurt in my sewing room and it squirted on the wall.  I didn’t notice it until the yogurt was dried up and Nola Mae was scrapping it off and eating it.

yogurt on wall Nola Mae

The weekend of my birthday we met some of our family for a picnic, playing on the rocks and hiking at Eau Claire Dells.

Eau Claire Dells Boys log 2013

Eau Claire Dells Boys 2013

My beautiful sister, Becca.

Eau Claire Dells Becca  2013

We were here five years ago.  We took this photo inside this tree trunk (Henry was in my belly and Charlie and Henry were so little and so cute). 

Eau Claire Dells tree trunk 2008

 This year we did the same pose, notice the difference in the tree trunk.

Eau Claire Dells Family 2013

On my birthday (because I wanted to sleep in) I took the boys to school.  When I came home I notice one of the power lines in front of our house was down.   Thankfully it was a wire that was not “live”.  I called the electric company to tell them and secretly hoped my favorite linemen would show up.  I have a couple of favorites because I use to work there many years ago.  Did they know it was my birthday?  My two favorite guys showed up!

linemen Dick

linemen Alie

I went to my 25th class reunion and made the cake for the dinner.

cake 25th class reunion

My mom and Helen helped take care of the kids while Jack and I went to dinner and stayed late for visiting.  Robbie and Charlie slept over at Helen’s house.  We left Nola Mae and Henry at my mom’s at 4:30 and came home at 12:30.  This was the longest amount of time I have ever been away from Nola Mae.  She woke up looking for me just as we were coming down the road.

 We went to our favorite park, Keller Lake, as usual we had the park to ourselves!

keller lake Robbie

keller lake Charlie

keller lake Nola Mae slide

keller lake Nola Mae climbing

keller lake four kids

My Favorite pictures from this month:

Charlie & Nola Mae sad girl

Henry serious face

Mystique

Nola Mae Watermelon

Nola Mae

From my garden:

I didn’t get to braiding my garlic this year before it really dried out.  So the stems got chopped and I put a notice on Facebook that I had garlic for sale and 11.5 pounds sold within six hours.  Thank you to all my friends, enjoy!

garlic 2013

September 7th I picked my first batch of tomatoes, two of these boxes came from Susie’s garden.  I have already canned 21 quarts of tomato paste and have a gallon bag of dried tomatoes.

tomatoes first picking 2013

By September 12th my raspberries were ripening like crazy and still going strong at the end of the month.   I have about two gallon sized bags in the freezer, so far.

garden raspberries 2013

The mullein has gone crazy in my garden where the garlic was this year.  I am thinking I will be planting the garlic for next year around these plants because there is no way I am tilling them up!

garden mullein 2013

On September 20th we picked all our Honey Crisp apples.  I wanted them to stay on the trees a little longer but with every windy day many would fall off the tree.  Our other tree is still loaded and I will be  picking those later in October to make applesauce.

apples Honey Crisp 2013

Sunflowers

garden sunflowers

garden sunflower autumn mix

We have seen this little frog on the house, on our window and on the door at night.  I found him in my Autumn Joy Sedum during the day.

Garden sedum frog

We have let the chickens roam the yard this fall, Henry took this photo.

chicken barred rock

Climbing the rocks in my flower garden.

garden rocks Henry and Nola Mae

Charlie is a great big brother and very helpful, he loves to wear Nola Mae.

wrap DIY Charlie & Nola Mae

I got out my baby wearing vest for one of our hikes.  It was chilly but not chilly enough for me.  It was perfect for keeping Nola Mae warm.

wrap Mei Tai w vest sept walk

My friend Sara and I with our matching Zara Velvet wraps.

wrap two Zara Velvets w Sara

I washed my light rainbow wrap, it looked so pretty on the line I had to take a photo.

wrap light rainbow diamond weave clothes line

Week 40 – October 1 – 7, 2012

Week 40 – October 1 – 7, 2012

(completed on 12/14/12)

After school the boys would stop at the apple tree to eat.  Today I caught them using some teamwork to get their apples.

boys teamwork apples

Sometimes Henry wakes up when the boys are getting ready for school.  He fell back to sleep in his chair.

Henry sleeping

I trimmed our raspberries last winter so I wouldn’t have a crop to pick in June/July with a new baby.  I thought I would be ready for picking by the time the fall berries were ready.  It was hard for me to keep up.

raspberries

If you look closely you can see Nola Mae’s sad face.  She wasn’t happy with picking raspberries because I wasn’t moving around enough.   She squirmed around and tried to escape.  By the time I got to the house my wrap job had gone bad!

wrap gone bad

I was a little discouraged with my wrap so I dug out my Ergo this week.  It fits her perfectly!

Ergo

  I love to make applesauce.  I love feeding applesauce to our boys.  I love sharing it with friends and my nephew.  Our apple tree blossoms were damaged during a frost this year.  We had very few apples so I bought four bushels of apples from Country Corner Sales.

apples

Photos of our apples from last year:  Click here.

Photos of Henry helping me make applesauce last year.  Click here.

After my stop to pick up the apples I went to the Amish greenhouse, Sunset Acres, for squash and pumpkins.  Perry is a good salesman and talked me into a huge mum plant.  I bought it with my birthday money that I got from my mom.  If I didn’t have that money burning a hole in my pocket I never would have bought it.  I hope that I planted it soon enough that it will come back next year!  Thank you, Mom!

mums b-day

I follow The Pioneer Woman’s blog.  I found these Slice-and-Bake Cookies.

I made a few changes…instead of nuts I chopped up garbanzo beans and I made a double batch and put these in the freezer.  If I were to do this again I wouldn’t chop the M &Ms. We have been enjoying a small amount of cookies every once in a while for a treat.

cookie dough for freezer

Charlie and his friends on the curb waiting for the Homecoming parade to start.

homecoming parade 2012

Once in a while I get Mystique out and give the boys a ride.

zara velvet wrap w horse (2)

The progress on the kayak…

Kayak glue

Kayak glued

Week 23 – June 4 -10, 2012

Week 23 – June 4 -10, 2012

Monday, June 4th:  This evening a storm brought us some much-needed rain and great entertainment for the boys.  Our spring was so dry there haven’t been many dams built here in our “pond” area.

During the storm Nola Mae napped in my arms while I read my book.  Next year she’ll be building dams with her brothers.  Or maybe destroying the dams they build.

Tuesday, June 5th:  I have mentioned before how Henry can be very gentle with our job of collecting 20+ eggs into a bucket and not break a single one.  But when it comes to chicks and chickens it seems like he likes to catch them and stick them in places where they don’t belong…a boot or a cooler are the most popular places.   I sprinted for the camera and then saved the chick.

“Look, Mama!  It fits in my Granny boots!”  He calls his boots “Granny boots”  because we left them there once, he forgot he even had them and when we went back to Granny’s he thought she gave them to him.

 Wednesday, June 6th:  Summer vacation started off with a great first day.  I bought the boys the game Battleship.  I loved playing this when I was younger and I thought they were ready for it.  They started playing this game the night before and were eager to finish it this morning.

Charlie and I planted my five hanging baskets around the milk house.  The big job this summer will be to keep them alive.

All three boys picked strawberries for lunch from our little patch.  I am reconsidering my plan to till up our strawberry patch.

I am not sure what the reason for this little bit of cuddling Nola Mae was getting from Robbie.   It is a rare occasion.   All I remember is running for the camera to take this picture.  I am kind of remembering he was icing his foot.

 Thursday, June 7th:  This maple tree by the garden is much bigger since Henry was a baby in the spring of 2009.  He slept under this tree for many hours that first summer while we worked/played in the garden.  Robbie joined Nola Mae under the tree to do some writing and drawing.  I got a little bit of work done in the garden.

Nola Mae’s first nap under the maple tree.

Lately, Charlie has become more interested in Mystique.  Today he spent a lot of time brushing her.

Our first picnic lunch.  The boys were excited.   I set it up and surprised them.  They ate very well and willingly helped with the clean-up.  I may have to do this more often.


 

Friday, June 8th:  We left this morning for a weekend of hiking and camping on the Mississippi River.   We stopped in Black River Falls for one of our breaks.

I wonder how many Lion bubblers are still around.

We arrived at our final destination…Perrot State Park.  Jack and Helen took awesome photos all weekend.  It was very difficult to choose which ones to post here.  If I can find some time this week I may do a post of my favorite photos from our weekend. 

 Saturday, June 9th:  Nola Mae slept very well for her first night in a tent!

The temps were hot during the day and wonderfully cold at night. I didn’t pack many warm blankets and I forgot Henry’s blanket so Jack and Henry covered up with the table-cloth I brought along.

A little bit of tears and dirty hands make for a cute little boy.

   We hiked for an hour up to the top of one of the bluffs.  Jack carried Henry to the top and Henry hiked down.

Sunday, June 10th:  On Sunday our hike was at least two hours.  Henry wasn’t interested in being carried this time.  So he hiked the whole thing!  We met some hikers on the way up the bluff and the lady made some comment doubting that the boys could do the whole thing.  I wish she was at the end of the trail to see they all made it.

Before we left the park we all took showers.  My hope was to wash away any poison ivy that was touched.  It seemed like it was every where I looked and every where the boys stepped.  (I am busy washing EVERYTHING from the weekend – shoes, clothes and bedding.)  So far, knock on wood, there is no sign of poison ivy!

 As I was looking through my photos for this week’s post I found these of  Nola Mae’s first bath in the sink.  She loved it.  Robbie was our photographer.

Week 13 – March 26 – April 1, 2012

 Week 13 – March 26 – April 1, 2012

Monday, March 26th:  I made these “Knock You Naked Brownies” for my book club meeting.   I should mention that my book pick was The Birth HouseHere is the link to the book on Amazon.com.  It was a book enjoyed by everyone!  Thank you, Aunt Barbara for the recommendation!

Back to the brownies…

They were very yummy.  I shouldn’t have made them in my last weeks of pregnancy, because I wanted to eat them all!   While I was making them I realized I had made them before.  I had trouble taking them out of the pan (both times) while they were still warm, like the recipe says.  They were easier to remove from the pan once they were chilled.  It was frustrating and I swore I wouldn’t make them again (both times).  My friends’ response to the brownies convinced me that I will have to make them again.    Click here for the recipe.

Tuesday, March 27th:   Henry played outside a lot today.

 Just before dinner we saw him on the small gate talking to Mystique.  Jack went out with the camera to see what he was doing.  I thought he looked cute until I saw these pictures of him aiming the toy gun at her.

Wednesday, March 28th:   Another beautiful evening and perfect for a walk.  I think the boys had some kind of monkey in them today because they seemed to want to climb on everything!

 

Thursday, March 29th:  Robbie played basketball in the barn a lot this winter and now he has been spending time on the cement pad outside the garage dribbling the ball.

Friday, March 30th:  I started cleaning out the garden.  Last fall I didn’t have the energy to pull the corn stalks and milo out.  Today I did.  It took me two days to pull about five rows out.

Saturday, April 1st:  I got a little help from Robbie today with the milo.

Sunday, April 2nd:  We headed out to the garden after Jack tilled an area for us.

 

Robbie planting our first row of sweet corn.  It might be a little too early for this!

 I guess this is how Henry digs for worms.   I also saw him doing a head stand in the big hole that he and Charlie dug.  “Me looking for worms!”

 We walked down to the edge of the field to make firewood, first stop was to climb on the rocks in the pasture,

 the second stop was to check out the fort,

 and finally we were able to help Jack with the firewood.

Project 365 Week 40

Project 365 Week 40

Project 365: Take a photo a day and see your life in a whole new way.

10/3/11 (Monday) – Henry and I worked on finishing our applesauce after this last batch of steamed apples cooled down.

The apple juice from the  Mehu-Maija.

I got 18 pint jars of applesauce, so far!  I have a ton of apples still on the tree.  The more apples we eat the less I need to make into applesauce.

Here is half of them in the hot bath.

10/4/11 (Tuesday) – Henry’s new way of doing dishes.

After school energy…balancing in the wheel barrel full of pumpkins while your brothers shake the wheel barrel, causes a lot of giggling!

10/5/11 (Wednesday) – Slowly I am cleaning out the garden.  I found these treasures this week.

10/6/11 (Thursday) –  Robbie has this idea that he is going to rake the leaves off the path in the woods.  His main plan is to dry the leaves under the lean-to of the garage and then burn the leaves once they are dry.  The next day when he went back to the trail to admire his work.   He came to find me to tell me that it looked like he did nothing.  Someday he may understand that is how I feel about house cleaning.

10/7/11 (Friday) –  We will always need animals around for Henry to feed.

10/8/11 (Saturday) – Charlie recently spent his birthday money from Granny on these Lego’s.

10/9/11 (Sunday) – We aren’t saying good-bye to Mystique!  I just thought it was a beautiful day for a ride.  She needs more attention from us now that Vanilla is gone.  Each of the older boys got a turn by themselves and then a turn with Henry in the saddle with them.  This is Henry’s first time on a horse.  I think he loved it.

Project 365 Week 5

Project 365:  Take a photo a day and see your life in a whole new way.

2/2/11 – (Wednesday) One of my weekly jobs is to throw hay down.   My supply of small square bales is low.  I am saving those for last, mainly because the small bales are stacked above my chicken coop and is great insulation.  I still have a good supply of the large round bales and so that is what I am feeding Vanilla (cow) and Mystique (horse).  This process is a lot more work, but a lot of fun for boys.

Once the hay is thrown down the hay shoot, the fun begins! 

 

2/3/11 – (Thursday) A necklace (made by my Aunt Anita) for me to wear while breastfeeding, it helps keep Henry’s busy hands occupied.

 

2/4/11 – (Friday) Tooth fairy pillows I made for my nephew

and for a friend.

 

2/5/11 – (Saturday) This is an unusal sight…Henry angry and crying! 

Henry rarely cries and never is angry.   His expression of anger or frustration is something I haven’t see before.   Today he was very hungry!  I often offer him food in hopes that he will eat something.  Apparently I didn’t offer him enough food today.  He climbed onto his chair and started crying and grunting and signing “eat”.

 

2/6/11 – (Sunday) Peace: a quiet house (and very clean), a cup of hot tea and good books to read.