A Recital, A Birthday, An Anniversary, Weeds, Stitches and Berries

That title is all over the place, no?  Yes, that is the way things go around here.

Daniel and Elisabeth had their piano recital yesterday afternoon.  This was Elisabeth's 4th year playing piano.  It was Daniel's first year, and also his last year.  Although he did very well - as evidenced by his recital performance yesterday where he made ZERO mistakes - it is just not his thing.

Daniel played "Onward Christian Soldiers" and "Little Indian Lance".  Elisabeth played "Cares Chorus" and "Canon in D"(which I LOVE, it is what I walked down the aisle to at our wedding).  They both did wonderful and we're very proud of them!

Today is Jason's 41st birthday!  We laugh together all the time about how old we're getting.  He is certainly not the 19-year old I first met on the campus of University of Colorado!  (As I'm certainly not the 20-year old he first met!)  

He is even more handsome than he was when we met...and I love "growing old" with him!

Yesterday was the one year anniversary of us moving into this house.  I can't believe it has already been a year.  I struggle with getting frustrated over the "slow" headway we're making here.  But this is  marathon, I have to remind myself....certainly not a sprint.  And we have accomplished some big things...particularly fencing in the pasture and garden areas.  We're still thinking/planning/praying what we'll be raising in that pasture.

But - as I recently saw the children running through that pasture - the Lord hit me with the reminder that THEY are what we are raising here!  These precious children he has entrusted to our care.  The most important things we'll ever raise.  Anything else?  Is gravy...and will come in His perfect timing.

We had not (shame on us) been paying the attention to our garden that we needed to since we planted it three weeks ago.  So this weekend we got out there and weeded and hoed.  It is wonderful what can be accomplished in short order with a great team of workers.  

LK going to town amongst the 30 tomato plants we put in.

While LK has never met a veggie she doesn't like, I do believe tomatoes are her favorite.  They are her snack of choice...she eats them like apples.  

Even though we've been negligent the past few weeks, the garden is looking great.  We now are on well water (which means we don't pay for it), so we're watering this garden better than we did when we lived in town (and had to pay for the water!).  And what do you know: Gardens do better with enough water?!?!?

I was surprised and thrilled to see yellow squash already growing on the plants we planted:

 What a beautiful, beautiful site!

This garden is bigger than we've ever planted before....but it takes up only a fraction (1/6? 1/8?) of the area we have fenced off as "garden" in the back of the property.

With us eating more veggies than we ever have in the past (which I'm thrilled about) it would just be so wonderful if we grew more and more of our own produce.  Jas and I really don't know what we're doing (he might tell me to speak for myself)...but we want to learn.

We were so blessed and happy to be able to go blackberry picking on some friends' property the other evening.

Notice Elisabeth's very empty container...and very stained teeth.
She didn't make much of a haul...but she sure had a ball.

E put my container in front of her, so it wouldn't look like she hadn't gotten anything.

G kept saying "Mmmmm.....mmmm...nummy!" as he toddled behind me, picking as much as he could - and promptly stuffing it in his mouth.

Needless to say, G didn't actually bring much home in his little container either.

We probably ended up with 2.5-3 gallons in the van...but maybe only 2 gallons by the time we even got home.

We have been eating them plain...and last night - to celebrate Daddy's birthday - we made this Lemon Berry Skillet Cake:

It was SO.  YUMMY.  So moist.  Oh, my.  It is long gone.  Must make more.

I will not include any pictures of this...although I could (you can thank me later, Kathy and Kami)....

BeBe had to spend some quality time with our vet Dr. H again.  This time she somehow managed to get a 2-3 inch gash in her right "armpit."  (I'm aware that this is not technically what you call this on a canine, but it is the best description I can come up with.  It is on the inside of where her right front leg attaches to her body...her armpit, of course!)

The skin that was lacerated was just...flapping down.  Just hanging there...open. Uggghhhhh.  I didn't want to look when the children first discovered it.  But as soon as I did, I resignedly told them to load up in the van....it obviously required stitches.  Dr. H says it looks like she got hung on something...and it ripped through her skin as she got off/down.  We have no idea what she could have gotten tangled up with.  And as she visits and plays with two sets of neighboring dogs, I don't think this even happened here on our property necessarily.  She has 9 stitches...and seems to feel fine now, thankfully.

We are officially done with school for the 2013-2014 academic year.  (Although they will continue doing math during the summer, and LK will read to me.)

This is what our school room looks like right now....

 ....and the children tell me to just get used to it, as they intend for it to look this all summer.

They are having a blast working on little painting projects and such.  Whenever they have a few minutes, they might steal into the school room and work on something here and there.  That is not the table we eat on, and no one else goes in there....so I'm trying not to look in there as I walk by, as the sight gives me facial tics.

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