Monday, August 31, 2009

Goodbye Clutter....

This past Friday and Saturday we had a garage sale at our house. I had debated on whether to have one or not this year because they seem to be a lot of work. I had quite a few things pile up however that I wanted to get rid of and it seemed like a garage sale might be the most effective way to do it.

The sale went very well. My parents and Keren brought some stuff over and my sister Keren also came to help on Friday. I did put a simple add in the newspaper and put out a few signs. To simplify things I only priced a few things and then had a sign that said that everything was 50 cents each or 3/$1. I had many people comment on my low prices but I know I like to get good deals when I go to a garage sale and to be honest I was wanting to get rid of things.

We put out some items for free like a broken down bike, a little fridge that didn't work (we told them that), a pretty worn out treadmill and a broken desk chair. We were so pleased that people were willing to haul them off! We were also able to sell our big and heavy upright piano (because Mom and Dad had a nicer, smaller one waiting for me to have space- it had been my Grandma's). We also sold for a good price a brand new WII that Ken had won. (We decided that wasn't something we really wanted or had time for.) Another great thing about the sale was getting to talk to some people about church and our current kid's program and found some definite interest. I was pretty excited about that.

The old piano, ready to head out. It was a little bittersweet as I have had and enjoyed playing it all my married life.

Since this weekend was very nice for getting rid of stuff I was really in the mood for organizing our whole house, rearranging and getting rid of even more stuff. I had on my list for today: Fold about 5 baskets of clothes, wash and hang out on the line all our dirty laundry, rearrange and clean the living room and the boys room, clean the kitchen, mop floors and on and on.... I am not sure why I get quite so carried away with my planning but it seems to be part of my nature. Oh well, I never feel bored!

The new piano, isn't it sweet?

Well I didn't quite get that list done but I (the kids too actually) jumped in and got a lot done. A couple of hours into it I was sneezing like crazy from the dust we had stirred up (I am pretty sensitive to that). By the time Ken got home I was pretty much feeling sick. I thought about never cleaning again- which the kids thought was a great idea but Ken didn't seem to think so much of the idea. To bad! :-)
This past year has really left me desiring simplicity. It has been so easy to accumulate a lot of stuff. I am seriously not much of a shopper but that doesn't seem to matter, we have lots of stuff anyway. The truth is we need some stuff, here in Northern, MN we can't go outside in the winter unless we are properly clothed in winter gear, in order to learn we need good books, in order to make good food for my family I need the right equipment but at the same time there is much stuff in my life that I don't need. All it does is get in my way, make keeping my house clean a chore and adds stress to my life. It is my goal to get all of that stuff out of my house and passed on to someone that it brings joy to.
This simplifying process is something I am still in the middle of working on but I thought I would share some of the ideas that have helped me to make a little progress:
  1. Only keep those things that I know to be useful or believe to be beautiful or brings me joy. Of course the thing is when you have a family (and for us that is 6 different people) it takes a bit of figuring to find out how everybody sees the stuff we have. But we are working on figuring that out.
  2. Think long and hard before bringing anything new into the house! I visit very few garage sales because of this goal. When you do go to garage sales DO NOT feel like you have to buy something just to be nice. It is okay to look and leave without getting anything.
  3. Think "how many can actually use of this item?" I know that I will sometimes collect things because we use them but then the collection can get a little out of hand. For instance clothes for my 3 year old. I was given a bunch (which was nice because we needed some) but when they wouldn't all fit in her dresser I needed to make some decisions. I did some counting and decided that she probably didn't need 20 some t-shirts and a dozen or so pairs of shorts (especially since we have very few days that even reach 80!).
  4. As a general rule don't be sentimental. Of course I am not this way on everything but I am beginning to realize that I don't need to keep every letter that I have received over the course of my life! (Am I sounding a bit like a pack rat to you?)
  5. Be realistic! What are you ACTUALLY using? I have had a tendency to think "I will use that someday" or "we might have a baby over someday that will love to play with that toy". This year at the garage sale we got rid of some toys that the kids wanted to get rid of but I almost held onto because we might have somebody over that has kids that might want to play with them. Then I realized, you know what?! If we have a baby over they would probably enjoy playing with my plastic containers and wooden spoons as much as any of those toys.
  6. Just because we love to read doesn't mean we need to keep every book (which is lots! ) that we ever collected. Some books outdate, some aren't the quality that I really want for my kids and some I would rather actually use the computer to gain that information than look it up in some old book. It is alright to be picky! I also got rid of some cookbooks because I realize that if I need some certain recipe I can always find a bunch online, I don't need a dozen different cookbooks.

What are you tips for getting rid of clutter? I would love to hear them!

Sunday, August 30, 2009


This morning at church we enjoyed hearing a visiting friend (Billy Wallace) speak. He spoke on Hope and telling those around us in the world about the hope they can have through Jesus Christ.

The message really touched me and so I want to share some of the verses he used with you.

"For whatever was written in earlier times was written for our instruction, that through perseverance and the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope." Romans 15:4

The Bible is ours to read, not just as a list of things for us to follow but to give us hope. I certainly feel that in my own life but I think at times I have struggled with getting that message across to others. I know one young woman who wanted to leave her life of sin (which was all she had ever known) but found following Christ to be pretty hard. It will be different and there will be change but it is my goal that I can encourage her to see the hope that is given in the Bible that you cannot find anywhere else in this world.

After all, Jesus says:

"Come to Me, all who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart; and you shall find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy, and My load is light." Matt. 11:28-30

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Neighborhood Party

I haven't done much blogging this week because it has been just a wee bit busy around here. On Sunday night we got home from our little weekend bike trip, On Monday evening Ken and I drove over to Park Rapids (about an hour away) to attend a Republican event. On Tuesday evening we had a neighborhood party at our house and then this weekend we had a Garage Sale.
I really wanted to have a neighborhood party this year but felt like I just didn't have the time to put a lot of effort into it so we just had a simple one. That didn't stop it from being fun however. In fact of the 3 we have held this has been my favorite one for actually getting in some good visiting, and feeling like I really got to know some of my neighbors better. Also the kids had a wonderful time playing together which was really neat.

We ended up having around 30 people here. It wasn't a real large turn-out (probably due in part that I only gave them about 1 1/2 week notice) but I think 10 out of around 25 households were represented to it wasn't bad.

The kids playing an impromptu game of baseball
Here is what we did for our simple party:
  • I bought pretty paper at Dollar Tree and designed invitations on the computer and printed them out. They stated when and where it would be and asked them to bring a side dish or dessert and to RSVP if they could. (a little over half did RSVP - the others didn't.)
  • We went around and hand delivered them at each house 1 1/2 weeks before. I think 2-3 weeks would probably work better.
  • The morning of the party I went shopping and bought Hamburger patties, hot dogs, buns, cheese, lemonade, marshmallows, paper plates and helium balloons.
  • We took tables (an extra dining table, a folding table, a card table and a little kids play table) and chairs (folding, dining and camping chairs) out to the yard and set them up with simple cloth tablecloths on top.
  • We tied balloons to the mailbox and around the eating area.
  • We picked some garden flowers and put them in pint canning jars for centerpieces.
  • I cut up tomatoes, onions and lettuce for the hamburgers and got out other condiments.
  • We started a fire in the fire pit so that kids could roast hot dogs and marshmallows if they wanted to to. Also fire are just fun to relax around.
  • Ken grilled hamburgers.
  • The kids gave tours of the tree fort (which is getting close to done but is still in progress).

Neighbors brought various salads, beans and lots of desserts (were are still eating the ones that got left!). There was plenty of food to eat. We ladies had a lot of fun getting to know each other just sitting around eating. The men decided to try a game of horseshoes along with the visiting. They had fun visiting too however. I really am glad we had it as I like being able to know my neighbors better! Some of the neighbors we have had a chance to get to know before but others are pretty new neighbors and it was the first time we ever met them. We have had a lot of new neighbors move in in the last year so it was very nice to be able to meet a few!

Some of the group even stayed until dark!

Our party was very simple (but effective), someday I think it might be fun to have one that is a little more involved. Here are some links that have additional ideas for neighborhood parties:

I would love to hear any ideas you might have or about neighborhood parties you have held or gone to!

Monday, August 24, 2009

A family bike trip

One of our summer goals was to go on a little bike trip. We hadn't figured out when we would do it and then when we finally got serious about getting it planned we realized the only weekend we didn't have booked was this past weekend. The only complication was that I was helping out with an appreciation dinner for everyone who had worked on our church building on Friday evening. That made it so we couldn't leave until Saturday. A plus however for doing it this past weekend was that Saturday was Jonathan's eighth birthday and he loves to bike so it was like having a special event just for him.

We had our trip all planned out so that we would leave home Saturday morning (After a quick breakfast and Jonathan opening his presents), drive 1 1/2 hours to the Mesabi trail in North Eastern MN and we would park the van at point A, ride about 35 miles to the campground, hauling all our gear on our bikes. We would camp and then on Sunday morning we would start back to the van stopping to go to church in the morning and then get back to point A and go home. That was the PLAN, however.....
When does life go exactly as planned? It didn't for us this trip anyway, but it didn't matter, we had a lot of fun anyway.

We did get started as planned. We were able to haul all our bikes and gear with our mini van thanks to getting a bike rack to attach to the hitch spot on our van. We found it a little challenging to load the bike rack the first time (in the almost dark on Friday evening) but through the weekend Ken got pretty fast at it.

This picture is of Mara with her bike all loaded and ready to go. I found baskets for $3 at Wal-mart that we put on both Mara's and My bike (using zip ties) so that we could haul stuff in front. We bought racks for Jonathan (he is pictured above Mara's picture), Mara and I. The racks for Mara and Jonathan just attached to below their seat and said they would hold 20 lbs. We got those at K-mart (Wal-mart, Target and Pamida didn't have any) for about $18 each. I then made Pannier bags to fit over them and we tied sleeping bags down on top.

I got a little heavier duty rack from Amazon and so I made myself bigger bags. (Don't you love the bright colors? I was using up some interesting fabric!) I found this site very helpful in figuring out how to make pannier bags. Hauling stuff in this way worked very well and neither the kids or I hardly noticed that we had extra stuff on our bikes. In my bags I was able to pack Megan's little sleeping bag, clothes for Ken, Megan and I and our cooking pot and some food and other cooking stuff. I also carried another sleeping bag on top of my rack.

Above are Ken and Megan heading out. The tent got to ride in the trailer beside Megan as well as some other odds and ends. Ken and my double sleeping bag had to be tied on top.
After riding around 5 miles (through some very pretty area and up and down some big hills) the boys thought it was high time we stopped for lunch. For lunch we had packed string cheese, trail mix (which I had made from nuts, dried pineapple, raisins, sunflower seeds and chocolate chips), apples, jerky and cookies.

After lunch those that needed to used the "facilities" (i.e. the side of the trail) at which time Megan (while I was holding her up over the weeds) asked "Is this a toilet?" very seriously. :-)

When we were getting ready to load back up all of a sudden one of the trailer tires went POP! We were thinking "Oh no, that didn't sound good!"We had brought a tire patching kit along but by the sound of it that might not work.
Ken took it apart and it looked like it might be possible to patch (at least we had patches bigger than the area that had popped) but it didn't end up holding air. SO...what to do next.

Ken called my mom who looked up bike shops on line. Then he called the bike shops and sure enough they had a 16 inch inner tube. The decision was made that Ken and Jonathan would ride back the 5 miles to the van while the rest of us attempted to get all of the stuff back 1/2 mile to the road.

First we left the trailer and rode to the road (Megan rode on my bar) where we unloaded our other baggage in the weeds on the side of the road. Then we headed back to get the trailer. Since the trailer had only one wheel it obviously wouldn't roll along so we hooked it up to my bike and then we propped up the wheel-less side on Mara's bike's handle bars. Then Mara and I walked the bikes (with Megan walking along beside and Aaron biking) back to the road. It was a bit of a challenge to make it work but we managed and made it back to the road just several minutes before Ken drove up.

We drove to Hibbing and got the inner tube (plus extra inner tubes for every size tire we had- we didn't want to have that problem again!). Then we decided to drive East of the campsite and then ride West to it.

We went to the tiny little town of Mtn. Iron (where the only place open that I could fill water bottles at was the bar and grill). At the head of the trail there they had an old train engine that you could play on. The kids found it lots of fun.

We got all packed up again (bikes off the rack, bikes loaded, everybody on...) and off we went. Things went smoothly until Ken's chain broke. It happened once and Ken was able to find the parts and put it back together but evidently he didn't squeeze it tight enough or something so a little bit later it happened again. The 3 older kids were ahead at this point and just kept on going while Ken and I were looking for the part again. We didn't find it and then I ended up riding around a mile to catch up with the boys to tell them to come back. Back we headed to get the van again!

We loaded everything back up and decided that we had better just head to the campground now as it would be supper time before long.

It was a little disappointing to be driving instead of biking to the campground but that is how it worked out and it was okay. We really had a bunch of fun throughout the whole trip even though it didn't go as planned. We loved all the beautiful scenery and praised God for His great works!

The boys helped Ken put up the tent.
We even had "Birthday cake" for dessert. Jonathan had requested cheesecake so I made individual ones in a muffin tin. I also brought along a container of frozen strawberries that served as ice to keep the cheesecakes cold on the trip.

Megan enjoyed helping me wash dishes after supper.

On Sunday morning we ate breakfast and packed up camp and then headed to Hibbing to go to church. Ken got the stuff to fix the chain at Wal-mart.

After church we enjoyed a big dinner at the Pizza Ranch.

Then we headed to the trail head but since we were close to the Hull-Rust- Mahoning mine (which is said to be the Grand Canyon of the North) we thought we should go check it out.
It was pretty fun to see. My pictures really don't do it justice.

We also had fun posing as miners. (Mara and I)

Ken and Jonathan are the heavy equipment operators.
What was even more fun for the kids was getting to sit in the drivers seat of this truck which is about the size of a 2 story house.
Here is Aaron is one of the scoops used to dig in the mine.

Here is just a little tire that had been used on some of their equipment. Tires like these cost around $20,000 a piece.

After that we took a bike ride on the Mesabi trail. We rode around 5 1/2 miles to Kelly Lake where we had fun cooling off a little in the water.
We also thought some ice cream treats would help to cool us off some more and get us ready for the 5 1/2 miles back which was full of hills.

Then it was time to head for home! We really had a wonderful time even through all are little mis-adventures! We hoped to try it again sometime though we plan on being a little better prepared!

Sunday, August 23, 2009

"O Lord, how many are Thy works!
In wisdom Thou hast made them all;
The earth is full of Thy possessions.
Let the glory of the Lord endure forever;
Let the Lord be glad in His works;

I will sing to the Lord as long as I live;
I will sing praise to my God while I have my being.

Let my meditation be pleasing to Him;
As for me,
I shall be glad in the Lord."
Psalm 104:24,31,33 and 34

This weekend we had a bunch of fun going on a little bike trip in North Eastern MN. As we were riding along we so much enjoyed seeing some beautiful parts of God's creation. Mara commented that we could really see God's fingerprints everywhere. It was neat because in Church (we visited the church of Christ in Hibbing) the speaker again spoke of being reminded of God by what He has made. We have no desire to worship the creation but I am certainly in Awe of a wonderful Creator!

Friday, August 21, 2009

What I want for my children...

Sometimes we have fun talking about what our kids will be like when they grow up. I dream about them all being really musical, Ken dreams about the boys being great pitchers or we think of different things they might be good at like, maybe Mara will enjoy helping me do flowers for weddings, perhaps Jonathan will be an accountant or a carpenter. We think of Aaron as a politician, a preacher or a sales person and Megan as a loving and energetic mother. It is fun to imagine what life might be like but you know what?... concerning those things we don't really care.

I know some people want their children to be rich and famous or maybe have a doctorate in some field. You know what?... I don't care about that either. I have been thinking about what I really want for my kids and it is:
~ That they would always seek to follow our Savior. This is the one that really truly matters and if they get this one right I will be so blessed! This is the one that matters for eternity. The others that I am listing below are things that I think are helpful for a happy life.
~That they would be willing workers. Enjoying work makes life ever so much more pleasant! Others also appreciate hard workers.
~That they would have a love of learning. I really don't care if any of my children end up with college degrees, what I do hope is that they always look at life as an exciting learning adventure. There is so many fun things to do and enjoy if you only love to learn.
~That they would go through life with an attitude of gratitude. They don't need to be wealthy, if they look on life with a thank-ful heart they will feel rich!
~That they would be good money managers. From what I know, life goes much more smoothly when you aren't struggling with money problems.
That is what I hope for my kids....What do you hope for yours?

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Curing Hiccups!

Don't you just love it when you are merrily going about your day and all of a sudden when you are trying to talk a big "Hic- cup" comes out instead?

Oh you don't love that?

Well we have a solution when that happens at our house. Quick! To the refrigerator, throw open the door, grab the peanut butter (Okay, so now most of you are thinking- "What!? Peanut butter in the fridge!?" Yes at our house it is. It goes back to our moms buying healthy peanut butter which should stay in the fridge so it doesn't get rancid. Even though our peanut butter (I hate to admit) is not usually the healthy kind, old habits die very hard- but anyway) quick pick up a spoon and put a whole spoonful in your mouth!

At this point everybody else in the house is thinking this looks like fun and joining you for a peanut butter snack.

But Really! This method almost always works for us. Unlike some other methods I have heard of. Everybody in our household (except Ken who can't quite get himself to eat large spoonfuls of peanut butter- which the rest of us love!) uses this method and it is rare when it doesn't work.

Now its your turn - what do you use at your house to cure hiccups? I have heard so many, but I thought it would be fun to see just how many you all can share. Usually they seem just a little funny but somebody always seems to think they work wonderfully.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

A poncho and shoes for a baby

A friend from church recently had a baby girl (who is completely adorable! ~ Probably because she looks a lot like my babies did! :-) and I wanted to give her something homemade for the shower. It has been a very cool summer here and so I started thinking about warm and cozy things.
I had seen a cute tutorial on how to make baby shoes/slippers so I thought that would be fun to try and then I thought a hooded poncho might be a nice easy way to cuddle up a baby so I figured out how to make one of those. I am just curious, have any of you had a poncho for a baby? I haven't, but it seems to me they might be very handy but I am just not sure.
For a cute and simple shoe tutorial you can visit Stardust Shoes.
And now for how I made the poncho:
First you want to figure out how big you want it. (You could make these for any size person.) If you have the person available you can measure them from fingertip to fingertip and get a pretty good size idea, if the person is not available you will have to be like me and guess.

You can make ponchos round or square but I chose to make mine round. I fold up the fabric in quarters (like you would fold a washcloth) and then cut it like pictured above. Mine had a diameter of about 30 inches. After cutting the rounded bottom I cut a circle out in the middle for the head to go through. You don't want to make this to big but it definitely shouldn't be to small either! ( I am sure that was very helpful!) I also cut out a piece of fabric for the hood. The picture above shows the round piece all laid out and the hood fabric folded in half. The hood is twice as long as it is wide. This one is around 9x18 inches. I then sewed the hood fabric together up the back. Then as I didn't want it coming to a point in the back, I pinched a triangle and sewed a seam across that and then cut the triangle off. (I don't know how to explain it very well but hopefully you can look at the picture and understand. And if you don't understand, don't worry about it as it isn't an essential step.)

Next I folded the face edge of the hood under and sewed it- making a casing for elastic to go through. I inserted the elastic and then I pinned the poncho on the hood. I had to put in a couple of pleats to make it fit as the hole and the hood weren't perfect matches.

After sewing the seam, I went over it again with a top stitch to make sure it was sturdy and there weren't any lose edges.

The final step was to hem the poncho and I also added a trim of ric-rac. It was a very fun and simple project!
Here is Megan, my 3 year old, trying it on. It looks rather snug because I designed it for a 6 month old not a 3 year old.

If you have any questions please ask away in the comments. I will try to answer to the best of my ability.
Just now the project I am working on is Pannier bags for our bicycles. We are planning a family biking trip and we need to be able to haul our camping stuff. I am having lots of fun and can't wait to tell you about them- especially if they end up working well! :-) If you have any advice on making pannier bags or biking trips with young children I would love to hear it!

What projects do you have going on at your houses?

Sunday, August 16, 2009


This past weekend was a time of considering and thinking for me. I was recognizing in myself some traits that weren't very nice like pride, selfishness, anger and more. I found myself thinking "Oh yuck! Why am I like this?" I started to feel a little discouraged but then I just kept going to God over and over and and asking Him for mercy and help and He is. Right now I am feeling so very thankful for:
  • God's mercy and love. Even when I stumble and don't do the things I should, He is always loving me.
  • Jesus' blood which covers my sin. I am so far from perfect, but he offers the forgiveness and salvation that I need.
  • The Holy Spirit dwelling in me. I need His help every day! I don't always even know how to ask for the help I need but He does.
  • God's word to guide me, help me to recognize my sin and encourage me to do better.

These are some verses I have been reading lately that inspire me every time I read them:

Titus 2:3-5 and 11-14

"Older women likewise are to be reverent in their behavior,
not malicious gossips, nor enslaved to much wine,
teaching what is good,
that they may encourage the young women to love their husbands,
to love their children, to be sensible, pure, workers at home,
kind, being subject to their own husbands,
that the word of God may not be dishonored.

For the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation to all men,
instructing us to deny ungodliness and worldly desires and to live sensibly,
righteously and godly in the present age,
looking for the blessed hope and the appearing of the glory of our
great God and Savior, Christ Jesus
who gave Himself for us,
that He might redeem us from every lawless deed
and purify for Himself a people for His own possession,
zealous for good deeds."

I really, really want to live out those verses! And with God's grace and help I believe it can happen. What are your thoughts on those verses?

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Remembering Opal

My oldest friend, Opal who was 98 years old, left this world this week to go to be with Jesus. This morning was the funeral, it was a time of remembering, a few tears of sorrow because we will miss her here but also a lot of celebrating because we are confident that Opal has gone to be with the Lord. We are so blessed as Christians to be able to rest in this hope!

"And I heard a voice from heaven, saying, "Write, 'Blessed are the dead who die in the Lord
from now on!" "Yes" says the Spirit, "That they may rest from their labors,
for their deeds follow with them." Revelation 14:13
Opal was a bright light for God at church and in our town. She was very cheerful and energetic almost to the end (After breaking her hip a couple of months ago her energy began to go). She was a great example of how you can serve the Lord even when you are old.
Here are some of the things we have enjoyed remembering about her:
  • Her whistled special numbers at church. She loved music and loved to whistle, so often at our music nights she would whistle a song. A couple of her favorites were "His eye is on the sparrow" and "How great Thou art".
  • Her walker which she named "Sputnik" and had a bicycle horn attached to it. She was quite willing to use too if she needed to make her was through a crowd of people. The little kids loved coming up and using it also.
  • Her cheerful grin. She loved to smile and did very often.
  • She loved to volunteer. Almost to the end she was volunteering at our local TV station and she also volunteered at other places.
  • Her love of children and enjoyment of things they enjoy like children's choruses. Most times we would sing "Jesus loves me" at church she would point out that it wasn't just for kids, Jesus loves all us bigger people too.
  • She loved to making rag rugs in a special way using an old toothbrush handle. She made many, many rugs and gave them away. When we got married we could count on a rug from Opal. At the funeral they had all of us raise our hands if we had one of Opal's rugs in our home. The amount of hands up was pretty impressive!
  • Her life of thankfulness! Up until this past winter she had lived for 25 years in a Senior
    Apartment building. She was so thankful for that apartment and considered it to be rather like a palace because now she had indoor plumbing. Every so often she would mention how grateful she was for indoor plumbing.
  • Her love of sweets. She very much enjoyed the doughnuts that came with Sunday morning fellowship time.

Opal was a very sweet addition to our lives and we will miss her but we are looking forward to seeing her again some day!

Friday, August 14, 2009

I'm back!

I am happy to be back on my blog! This has been a long absence for me. I think I have found out that I am not addicted to blogging like I thought I might be,but I do truly enjoy it.

Here are a few of the things that have been keeping us busy these last few weeks:
  • The kids and I made and entered over 60 items in our county fair. We had fun bringing home quite a few ribbons too.
  • Getting things planned for the Republican booth at the fair. (Including making up a trivia game to be played.

  • Setting up the Republican Booth and Ken's business booth.
  • Attending Blueberry, Wild Rice and Chocolate cook-offs at the fair and having fun sampling some (many!) of the products.
  • Helping Ken run his booth at the fair.

  • Attending a "Dress a Cow Contest". Good fun!
  • Did I mention we went to the Fair?
  • Helping with and attending a kids Campout at the church building property.
  • We picked a few blueberries (around 4 cups, but it was sure fun to pick!), lots of raspberries (which have been turning into jam) and about 20 Juneberries (not a good year for them!).
  • I experimented with a new recipe. I had overcooked some white cake and it was quite dry so I made a trifle of sorts. I made vanilla pudding and then put layers of cake (crumbled up), pudding and berries in the bowl. It was an easy and effective way to use up cake that would have likely gone to waste otherwise. It was enjoyed too (even by Ken who was sceptical.)
  • I attempted to remove some of the monstrous weeds in our garden. Unfortunately there are still a lot their but it is getting better. :-)
  • We enjoyed company! Our friends Kent and Christy and their boys (but not their girls, which disappointed Mara quite a bit) came to visit. We had fun Raspberry picking together, the guys and kids went geocaching and Kent and I majorly beat Ken and Christy at a game of Spades. (Much to Kent's glee.) We also enjoyed some beautiful music from the 3 youngest though Levi didn't seem to want to be in the picture. (He would move whenever we brought out the cameras.)
  • I worked on wedding flowers while they were here as well and Christy requested some pictures- so here are a couple. Christy helped to make the pew bows but I didn't get any very good pictures to show you.
One of the arrangements for the front of the church building.

A small ice sculpture for the reception.

We are now busy with many other things which I will probably blog about! What is going on in your life?

Talk to you soon!


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