Monday, November 26, 2012

Frozentree Creations 350 Fan Giveaway!

We made it to 361! Thank you all so much for being fans of my page and my work! I am giving away one set of my holiday earrings! That means 8 pair of earrings are all yours for helping me get to 350! All you need to do is comment on this blog post and I will use the random number generator to select the winner! One comment per person please! The deadline to enter is Wednesday, November 28 at 11:59 PM! I will announce the winner on Thursday!

I was going to post photos of the earrings but Blogger is malfunctioning :(.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

To Be Young

Right now we are suffering from a cold in our house. Our children have bounced back in 24 hours. My husband and I, however, are still suffering. In fact, as I type this, I have a slight case of the chills. Sleeping becomes a horrendous endeavor, since snoring reaches concert hall volumes when you have no nose to breathe through.

Despite my husband and I consuming mass quantities of garlic and other herbs, we always suffer longer than our children. Is it because I breastfed them? Or is it just our ages catching up? I am not a neat freak by any means, I refuse to use antibacterials in my house and will question a doctor who is quick to prescribe them. We don't do showers every day either. Washing hands is a must but with regular soap and hot water. So why are their immune systems so awesome and mine sucks!

Right now, I cannot crochet a darn thing, since I make them for other people. My husband can cross-stitch away because he is making it for us(and yes he does cross-stitch). Never mind the fact that being sick generally lays me out and I can't do a single thing without having to crawl back to the couch.

Would I want to be that age again, no way. Do I want their immune system capabilities, you bet your tissue box I do!

Saturday, September 22, 2012

There are no apples....

One of the biggest reasons I wanted to move home was the lack of fresh apples in Florida. Growing up in Michigan, you can't go more than 50 miles without coming near an apple orchard. Beautiful trees full of shiny apples, fresh doughnuts, and fresh pressed apple cider. A serious glimpse of heaven that only happens in the fall up here.

Cut to this spring, the weather got tricky. It warmed up so much in March, that the apple trees blossomed. And then the temperature bottomed out, well below freezing. The blossoms fell off. And they didn't come back with the next warm up. So what does that mean? Very little to no apple crops. At least not here anyway. We went to an apple orchard just to check it out. Figuring that it couldn't be as bad as they said. There were no apples to pick at all. None. Apple cider was frozen from last year. Thirteen dollars a gallon. Thirteen. I wanted to cry.

I had to explain to my kids why we couldn't buy any apple cider. Surprisingly, they took it well. We had been discussing the drought with them and how it is affecting the food supply, so they had a basic understanding that weather affects food. They left with nary a tear and in good spirits that maybe next year would be better. Me, not so much.

There are rituals for each season for me up here. Fall is the apple orchard and Halloween. With my husband laid off from teaching right now, Halloween looks to be a low key affair. Pretty hard to accept when all you want to do is cover your house in spooky things for little monsters to enjoy. I have even considered dressing up the chickens in prison outfits and putting them in a cage on the porch while I handed out candy. You know, get the whole family involved.

For now though, I guess I will have to cross my fingers that he will have a job by the Holidays since I love decorating then as well. Trying to keep my head up. You do the same.

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Damn you, squirrel!

Gardens, at the best of times have many insect pests. But, when the squirrels decide that your watermelons are fair game, it is on like Donkey Kong! I came outside one sunny morning to let the chickens out and check on the garden. I stumbled across a barely eaten, not even ripe yet, baby watermelon. A quiet rage built inside of me.

This punk ass squirrel had not only been stealing my bird seed which had me looking at very expensive anti-anything bigger than a song bird feeders, was now raiding my garden. If I was already in possession of a BB gun, those little suckers wouldn't stand a chance. In fact, I still plan on getting one. I am so not a trap and release kind of gal when it comes to squirrels. Where is a damn hawk when you need one?!

Every time I see him outside, I run after his ass and chase him up a tree. My kids do the same. He still isn't terrified and my neighbors are calling the white coats to come and get me. He did make the mistake of taking something from my chickens and those bitches got nasty with him. Maybe I should let them wander around the garden, like security does at a concert. See how he likes it when they get his tail in their beaks.

I understand that animals have to eat and are going to take the easiest thing they can lay their hands on. But, I worked hard on that garden and I am going to defend it like it's the Alamo. My family doesn't make much money and I plan on storing a lot of that food for winter. Better get into that squirrel protection program, you thieving bastards!

Monday, August 27, 2012


Being back in Michigan this summer meant a lot to me in so many ways. I could go outside without sweating my brains out. I could let the kids play. And the best thing of all was that I could plant a garden. I knew that I wanted tomatoes, cucumbers, lettuce, cabbage, and pumpkins and my husband and son threw in a bunch of different peppers. 

We planted two different garden patches. Tomatoes, lettuce and green peppers were by the garage. Everything else was in a freshly dug up patch on the other side of the yard. I also planted beans near the house so that I could attach netting to the eaves of the roof. I also planted peas but learned the hard way that peas need cool weather to grow. 

So after months of watering, weeding and waiting, we are starting to get in some vegetables. The cherry tomatoes exploded, I didn't have trellises nearly big enough for them. My chickens happen to love them so when we pick, we give them a few. My heirlooms are coming in as well. I am having a hard time determining when they are ripe since the colors are so different. We have been getting banana peppers for a while now. My son loves to eat them raw, seeds and all. We are getting some cucumbers but I think there is going to be an explosion soon so I need to get my pickling stuff ready. We already canned about 9 jars. 

Watermelons are starting to make an appearance. We lost two so far, one cracked on the bottom and the other was black and deflated. So I have been checking the others every day and turning them in the soil so they aren't laying on the same side all the time. No pumpkins growing as of yet, and I am slightly worried since the vines have these humongous flowers. 

The beans are starting to finally come in but there aren't as many as i hoped. I really wanted a lot so I could can them for the winter and not have to buy cans of beans. Maybe there will be a late surge. Crosses fingers.

But the sheer satisfaction of growing food myself is just so good for my soul. It makes me complete. My parents did it off and on while I was growing up and I was lucky to have parents ahead of their time. Now that my dad is retired, he grows a garden every year. We spent this summer talking together about our plants. You can't buy that in a store.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Where I have been

So things got a little crazy around here, and I got a little lazy. Okay, a lot lazy. We bought six hens in March and my life was consumed with their care. They are all grown up now and laying 6 eggs a day. This is wonderful for us because right now, my husband is laid off from his teaching job(another blog post). I will try to post more often, take some time and write down ideas to blog about. Don't be surprised if you see my chickens pop up on here from time to time, I seriously love them a lot. Also my garden will be making appearances and also my canning. So hello again, and please stick with me!

Friday, February 17, 2012

When Mommy Gets Sick

Over this past week and a half, I have been taking care of sick kids. My oldest had a high fever, my second oldest was vomiting. They got better in a day. Then, I caught it.

When I get sick, it goes to my sinuses and my chest, always. I also caught the fever that had plagued my boys. The first day, I was alright, just a little stuffy. I thought it would be over the next day. Ha, was I wrong. I woke up and I could barely get up. I moved to the couch after feeding the kids breakfast. I think I may have dozed a few times. I actually had to have my oldest bring lunch fixings into the living room so I could make lunch from the couch. I felt so pathetic as a mom.

So, my husband comes home from work and I fall asleep. He takes care of dinner and the kids, putting them to bed. I am a ball under a blanket on the couch. My eyes begin to burn which is a sure sign that I have a fever. The kids all kissed me goodnight and went to bed. I informed my husband that I needed him to stay home the next day because I felt so awful. I never ask him to take a day off, unless it is absolutely needed, such as a doctor appointment. At first he was reluctant because he had so much to do but as I progressed in being more pathetic, he realized that I needed him.

That night, I had the worst time getting to sleep. My fever was aggravating me, giving me chills and then sweats. I couldn't breathe through my nose. I flipped and flopped all night until about 5 AM, where I fell into a coma. I got up with him and the kids and again, camped out on the couch. I fell asleep until 2 PM. Thankfully, my husband was there to herd the kids through the day.

Today, I am doing better. I could actually function and do the things I needed to do as a mom. However, my energy gets sapped quickly so I cannot do all that I need to around the house. And as helpful as my husband is during times like this, there are always things missed.

The biggest thing that I need to remember when I get sick, is that I have to allow myself time to heal. If I don't, I suffer and so do my kids.  I cannot expect my body to bounce back like theirs do(even though I am insanely jealous). I will do the things that matter, and that will have to be good enough.

Do you allow yourself time to heal? Or do you act like me, the second you get a little energy, you try to do it all?

Monday, January 23, 2012

Getting Settled

Remember how I told you about that leap we were taking? We took it and moved back to our homestate. It has been a stressful, exhausting, infuriating adventure but in just a few short weeks, it was all worth it. My mom can't stop saying how glad she is that we are back home. My kids were able to play in snow for the first time. We found a great house that is in a great neighborhood and is only five minutes from my husband's new job. It is such a relief to not have to fill up the gas tank every week.

My problem right now is restocking my pantry. I gave all our food to our friends who had little kids. I wasn't going to store it on the POD for a month, that was for sure and I like helping out people who are in the same situation we are. They are both teachers, her husband worked with mine. It was nice to help them out. I have restocked a little, Meijer had a great deal on mustard, olives, and diced tomatoes. Slowly but surely, I will get my pantry back up to snuff.

I am working right now on getting used to our new surroundings. We use our GPS to find stores we need and then drive home without it to get used to where we need to go. There are a few stores missing up here that I actually need like Party City! I always use them for my kids' parties. Also, there are no Krispy Kremes up here! In the world of doughnuts, I can only eat Krispy Kremes. They don't use peanuts or nuts in their doughnuts and since I am allergic, this is a good thing. The nearest one is over an hour away. I know, I know, first world problems.

I will get back to a regular schedule of updating the blog. It will be nice to be back to a routine. And I will tell you why you should never use PODS.