Saturday, September 6

A busy week under the pines

The weather cooled down a few days ago, so we headed outside to get some work done. The firewood is being stacked, grass is being cut (including areas we let grow through the summer), and the chicken coop is being insulated. Some of the kids are being a huge help, and others are finding themselves with special jobs created just for them and their 'tudes. Grace has worked so hard helping me stack wood, she wore her gloves right out. And she's as pleased about that as I am.

We also charted all our apple trees and tested the apples from each, taking photos as we went. Eventually, I'd like to know what kinds of apples we have growing here. We counted 30 live trees. I don't think the ones we planted made it. And I know we had a few more last year, so I'm wondering if we missed a few that aren't producing this year. We do have 25 fruit-bearing trees right now. Looks like we'll be busy for quite a while!

We got some rain this afternoon, so we headed inside to work. We cleared a lot of scary stuff out of the basement. It looks SO much better! There's still more work to be done down there, but it's not scary anymore. I really wish I'd taken a before picture so I could share with you the huge difference we made today.

In the morning, part of the fam will be heading to church for a ministry opportunity. I will be among those staying home and sleeping in.

I might go clothes shopping for the kids in the afternoon, since one of the other things we've accomplished this week is the seasonal changing out of clothing. (sigh) We're still at the point where most of Toby's outgrown clothes end up in Jon's bin, but Jon is growing slowly and tears or eats his clothes anyway, so he's got lots of nice clothes but nothing that fits him, and Michael's bin is empty because he tears or eats his clothes, too, and gets so very little handed down to him anyway. You'd think I didn't feed these boys, for all the sleeves, collars, and buttons they've chewed apart. Jeans always end up with shredded knees, of course. And jammies just get torn up for the heck of it. It no longer surprises me to see one of the boys come down the stairs in the morning with a gaping hole in his jammies.

Enough about that. It's depressing to still be dealing with it. Oh, but in case you're wondering, I make them mend their clothes. I do, however, throw out the nasty stuff at the end of the season. This is why Michael only has 3 pairs of pants right now -- two pairs of church pants and one pair of town pants. But really, I don't want to talk about it anymore. I also don't want to talk about the fact that Saturday is his 8th birthday. I'm not ready to have a good attitude about it.

Anyway, we pulled the a/c unit out of the bedroom window today. I think we had it in for about 6 weeks. That's just right, in my opinion.

I've been enjoying picking ripe tomatoes from the garden lately! Last year, I don't know if even one full-sized tomato ripened before the frost. Most of them ripened on the windowsill. The little cherry tomatoes hardly count. They're like the cockroaches of the garden -- they're taking over and there's no stopping them. They're taking their tomato cages with them, too. It's really quite a sight. I may need to tie them down before they scale the fence. But not until I've had a good night's sleep.


  1. Well, it sounds like your life continues to be as busy as usual. Loren's grandfather would be so proud of your efforts with the garden and the orchard. You really must post information on sizes for the kids as I absolutely LOVE to shop for bargains, and if I had an idea of sizes.....TJ Maxx and Marshall's are a veritable treasure chest for me and I go there often. Sometimes come out empty handed, but sometimes not:). I would love to send some items that I find but don't have a CLUE as to appropriate sizes. Let me know, either here or by email, and I will see what I might find. It would be great fun for me....seriously. Glad to know you enjoyed the photos of Cara's graduation. Hugs to all of you....Aunt Marion

  2. I love to read your blogs and keeping up with the family news. I also enjoy seeing pictures of the kids and all that is happening around, Joyce

  3. oh, I am SO with you on the invasive cherry tomatoes. We are slowly drowning in them. Please send help.

    As always -- I totally love your blog.