Sunday, June 29, 2008

Just Babble

And now, for the second half of our week. Thursday, as expected, we headed to town. This time we managed to get everything done in one day. Yeah! No extra $4+ a gallon trip to town! I was thrilled when Pa returned from the Post Office with a good sized box, containing our Summer Science project. The kids were tickled to recieve their first Reading program prizes. Everyone was happy! A good way to begin our weekly excursion.

We then headed to the Grocery Outlet where we scored some good deals, spending a bit over $40, and saving better than $30. Afterwards, we headed to Walmart for a change. I was in search of a sweater drying rack for my knitted garments. There were none to be found. I'm beginning to think I'm going to have to figure out how to make my own. We did, however find a great pair of shoes for Lindsay. She just loves them! We like that they have a decent tread, and are breathable for those warmer Summer days. We also like that they are mostly brown in color, so they don't look dirty after one run around the house. She likes that they have a velcro closure, so she doesn't have to tie them. We all found it highly entertaining that these shoes have a name, and that name is Lindsey! A tad bit different spelling, but still basically the same name. They were also on sale which is always a good thing. We did manage to find some more good deals at Walmart, and I was able to pick up a few things we can't seem to find elsewhere.

Homeschool Fun!

Upon returning home, after getting all our groceries put away, washing up and having dinner, I eagerly dug into the box. I located, and carefully pulled out the manual and began reading. It looks like this is going to be all I had hoped for and then some. I am really looking forward to getting started on it this week, and reporting on our progress here.

In the meantime, we are studying Costa Rica in school. The kids are both enjoying learning about it, as it is home to so many different species of both animal and plant life that interests them. They are also excited to learn about a Country that seems to be appreciative, and protective of it's natural resources and the wildlife they coexist with. I couldn't be more happy about their reaction, as this will be a fine intro to our Science lessons yet to come.

Nathan and I are both learning exciting new things in math. I find it interesting that he, at 10 years of age, along with the rest of our nations school age children in the lower to middle grades, are learning math skills that I was being taught in High School! Fortunately it was an elective subject, as no matter how hard I tried I just couldn't seem to get it. The nice thing about children learning it at an earlier age, is that it is explained in a manner which is much easier to understand,even for me! I still need to figure out that Pi thing though...;-)


I'm nearly finished with the front portion of Nathan's shirt. I decided to try something new with it, and added shaping for a placket. The placket shaping is finished, and all that's left now is to finish shaping the neckline, knitting it on up for the shoulders, and knitting my placket, before I continue on with the sleeves, and the neckline.

Before making the final decision to go with a placket, I got out my Vogue Knitting book, upon which I have come to rely more and more. I looked up the instructions for the different styles of plackets, as well as buttonholes. These are both new techniques for me. The placket shaping was simple enough, just a matter of deciding how big I wanted it, and which style I wanted to go with.

I decided the button holes were going to take some practice. I knitted a swatch the intended size of the placket and proceeded to try a couple different styles of buttonholes. First I tried taking the easy way out, with a simple eylet. That was way too small, so I took a look at the various other options I had. I finally decided if it was worth doing, it was worth doing right, so chose what looked to be the most difficult, but also the nicest looking. It took me several attempts but I finally got it right. It really wasn't nearly so difficult as I imagined. I was also tickled to find the number of stitches I chose to go with for the buttonholes turned out to be just the right
size for the buttons on Pa's shirts, so all I have to do is choose an old shirt that he no longer wears and remove the buttons. I'm looking forward to seeing how the final product turns out.

Saturday Night At The Movies!

This week the kids chose a movie from the selection at the Library for their Saturday evening viewing. We were pleased to note the Library had acquired some additional movies to chose from and the kids were excited to find one they'd seen ads for. Alvin and The Chipmunks, an old favorite trio from Ma and Pa's childhood was an excellent film! The whole family enjoyed it! Jason Lee was terrific as Dave Seville, and the supporting cast was great as well. The only negative aspect was trying to get the kids calmed down for bed afterwards. Wonderful family film!

Once we managed to get the kids calmed down, Pa and I sat down to view our choice for the evening. Usually we choose a comedy for Saturday night, but I had so many things going on this last week that I somehow forgot to make my weekly trip over to Netflix to update my qeue, so we ended up without a comedy this week. Instead we watched a foreign film, Blame It On Fidel. This film shows politically turbulent times in Paris in the 70's,and the changes a family who becomes politically active went through, from the childs view. If you don't like dealing with subtitles, or are not able to comprehend the French language, then this film is not for you. We do enjoy foreign films, and don't normally have a problem with subtitles. However, in this particular film, as well as a few others in the past, we found it extremely annoying to be attempting to follow the story line, with highly inadequate subtitles. It was like trying to figure out a conversation while only hearing half of it. What we were able to glean from it seemed promising. We both feel it is probably deserving of a 4, and possibly even 5 rating, but with the missing words, it's impossible to tell for sure. Perhaps it was the particular disc we had? If anyone else has, or does watch this film, I'd be interested in hearing your experience with it.

Boondock Yard and Garden

The last few days we've been hard at work outside in the yard and the gardens. Pa's been busy with his Bushwhacker, as well as the chainsaw, while I've been utilizing the hand clippers to cut away all the grass and weeds that Pa couldn't quite get to with his tools of choice. Our yard is slowly but surely beginning to resemble a real yard. It's quite satisfying at the end of the day, standing back, noticing the improvements from the days and weeks before, then to think back even further and realize the huge difference from when we first moved in. It's really quite amazing, and makes me wish we had gotten some "before" pictures.

My gardens are both doing well. The peas are starting to show signs of flowering, and I was thrilled to note the first signs of flowering in my broccoli plants! My potatoes are all flourishing. All three bags are now covered, and filled to the top, and I only plan to bury the three plants in the garden one more time beore allowing them to grow and be pretty for the rest of the season.

Ven, our Grandma cat was a bit confused, and less than thrilled with me yesterday morning, when she witnessed what I'm sure seemed to her a punishable crime. I had mixed up a diluted solution of powdered milk and, just as she was passing by the garden area, I was beginning to feed my zucchini and acorn squash their calcium supplement. Her eyes got big, and her nose was just a twitchin' as she pressed it against the fence, watching me create mud puddles from that delectable substance. Several times yesterday I noticed, as she walked by that area she would glance in that direction, stop, and take a closer look, her nose in the air, searching for telltale signs. Although I did find it amusing, I also felt just bad enough about my inadvertant tease to have the kids take a treat out for Ven and her "pride. "

Nathan and Lindsay's garden is also coming along quite nicely. Their potatoes are looking healthy, their garlic is looking great, and their lettuce is growing faster than mine! Nathan also has some sunflowers started, as well as some carrots. We're all having fun with our garden experiments this year.

The Dinner Bell

Last weeks Turkey was consumed in a variety of ways over the span of several meals. Unfortunately, I don't have a regular oven at my disposal (we are currnetly using a tabletop roaster oven, which is fine for some things, but not things that require a dry heat). so I was not able to make my turkey pot pie. But we made good use of it anyway, including the obligatory turkey sandwiches. Daniel made an excellent gravy from the drippings, and as a bonus he made enough that we were able to enjoy it with subsequent meals. Something about leftover turkey that just doesn't seem like leftovers.

Once we had dined on that for the allowed safety period we we picked the carcass clean and froze it and the bits of meat seperately. Today we are enjoying the aroma of simmering turkey carcass, and anticipating a yummy meal of turkey stew with dumplings for tonights supper. One nice thing about the cool weather this year, we can enjoy those comforting foods more traditionally served in the fall and winter months.

Hope you're all having a fantastic weekend!


Linda said...

your garden sounds like it's doing fine. I didn't get to try the potatoes in the garbage bag, but next year it will be on my list. My strawberries r blooming so am taking off the blooms like the directions say, the 1st year take them off and the next year strawberries. I don't like onions, so heard schallots were good and mild so I'm trying some of them. I also have 3 big pots of chives and various other herbs. My garden all in all is doing well also. I love buying a few extra turkeys to cook and for leftovers also. I make a good chicken noodle soup and just use turkey instead. Keep up the posting, love reading about u,
your family and your gardens.

toomanyhats said... I think I need the turkey pot pie recipe! That sounds so good.
You've all been a busy bunch. I'm jealous of your potatoes....I tried them year before last and it was a complete flop. Maybe I'll try again next year.

Kim's Mom said...

Hi Linda! Thanks for stopping by! Sounds like you have a great garden going! I'd love to try growing strawberries, but am afraid the squirrels and the Blue Jays would get to them before we could.

Carol, you want my secret pot pie recipe??? LOL Okay, but that might take some time as it's one of those I never bothered writing down (maybe that's why it's secret?) Soon as I have a working oven again, and manage to get all the ingredients together I'll make one and see if I can get it all written down so I can share.

I'm anxious to see what we actually end up with for potatoes once it's all said and done. I've tried growing them twice before with no luck, but most of the ones I have going now are looking so nice and healthy. Seems a bit odd really, getting all excited over some lowly potatoes. LOL Must be the Irish in me ;-)