Tuesday, May 30, 2017

One Post a Month: May

Here it is, the end of May and I have caught back up with the blog.

The baby currently baking is 18 weeks now. I have my anatomy scan this Monday! I am feeling movement daily which is always a reassurance. We have foregone any preliminary testing on the baby this go round, partly to save money, partly because I changed OBs right during the critical testing times, and partly because I didn't want the stress of it. So the anatomy ultrasound will really be the key to finding out how this baby is doing. Prayers, please!

May brought the close of another homeschooling year and the close of Caroline's first year in preschool. It's nice to have the freedom of summer vacation.

We attended our first goat show of the year last weekend and we constantly come in behind an excellent herd of Lamanchas that have made quite a name for themselves. It is a great honor to place just behind them every time, but of course we are anxious to get some goats who can compete at just a slightly higher level. We are participating in linear appraisal this year which will basically give each goat in our herd a score so we can make decisions on herd improvements, breeding, etc.  So this is exciting!

Our garden is performing incredibly well this year thanks to more consistent weeding and the lovely goat manure compost that I was able to work into the soil.

In the evenings we have started having family bible reading/discussion and prayer time.  This is new for us to do as an entire family. We used to pray the rosary as a family and then fell out of that routine, and realized that if our kids don't see us in God's word and hear us praying more personally to Him aloud, how will they form their own personal relationship with Him?  So this is our start to showing them how to read, pray and live out the Bible as a family.

That's enough for tonight! Look soon for the June issue! 😉

One Post a Month: April

Let's get caught up! April was busy.  3 birthdays and a traumatic goat delivery.

First off, Caroline turned 4.  She wanted to go to "Old McDonald's" for her birthday... because it has a playground. Apparently our kids are Happy Meal and playground deprived.

The very next day was Ian's birthday. He turned 6. His request was to eat at Buffalo Wild Wings (because they have gamepads to play video games while you wait for your food)... again, deprived! LOL!

At some point in the middle of the month our last goat was due to kid and she had a terrible delivery with tangled kids trying to come out with the wrong presentations... it was a mess. But in the end, everyone survived and today mom, Doeling and buckling are all thriving!

At the end of April we had Isabel's 11th birthday!!  She chose to go to a cupcake bakery and we all chose a different cupcake. They were amazing.

Somewhere in April there was also Easter.  We tried to take pictures after Mass by that was a joke.

And I think that about sums it up. 😉

Sunday, March 26, 2017

One Post a Month: March

Phew....I'm sneaking March's post in a few days early.  I feel like our family has been hit by the plague this year...a plague of sickness.  After all but one of us caught norovirus at the beginning of March (I think it was March? All this sickness is running together), now Caroline (3) has the flu....and what appears to be pink eye.  Poor kid.  We cannot catch a break.  I used to read peoples' posts on facebook and think, "Wow....their family is always sick!"  And now, well, I am that family!  Sadly it has caused us to miss quite a few days of co-op this year, which has been super frustrating.

In more positive news, we celebrated Rob's birthday with a surprise for the kids!  You can watch the video below and see for yourself!

This past week, the only goat due this month successfully had twins all by herself!  I was checking her every hour....or sending a child to check her.  After the last report, I thought, "Ok, I'll go out to the barn and check on her in an hour."  Of course with four kids, I got distracted and got out there probably 10 minutes after she had finished kidding.  A buckling and a doeling.  They are doing great.

Baby Goats
New Baby on the Way

I think we've covered all of March in those 3 topics!

I've been feeling quite sick with this baby and had to cancel a trip to see dear friends who we were supposed to meet in Asheville.  :(  That was a disappointment.  I am looking forward to feeling better, having an appetite and getting rid of the queasiness.

Friday, March 10, 2017

One Post a Month: February

February brought life and death to our little farm.  We lost one of our goats during labor due to complications from pregnancy toxemia.  I will spare you all the details, but we believe she was pregnant with triplets and both the mom and kids died before they could be delivered.  It was the first loss of one of our dairy goats and it really felt devastating.  But the next day, life goes on and there are farm chores to do and other animals that need to be attended to, so you go on.  We had a successful kidding of our favorite dairy goat, Cameo.  She had a buckling and a doeling.  Then last weekend, our goat Matilda kidded a healthy buckling.  We are expecting at least one more doe to kid out in March. 

Bearded Acres White Pearl and Bearded Acres Cannonball
Kids getting positioned for photo shoot! ;)

At the same time that baby goats began to arrive, so did our postal shipment of 27 chicks!  11 meat chickens and 16 laying hens of various breeds.  So to say that it has been busy around here is quite the understatement.  February is also the month that we plant potato seeds, so the garden was worked, tilled and plowed into rows, and we have both Kennebec and Red potatoes again this year in the ground.

Near the end of the month, Rob and I attended the Ignited By Truth Catholic Conference  which takes place here in Raleigh.  It is always so spiritually invigorating and encouraging to go to this conference.  What a faith builder to hear such great speakers!  Fr. Michael Gaitley, Abby Johnson, Leah Darrow, Julie and Greg Alexander were the big names there.  My mother-in-law babysat for us and we were able to attend the whole day.

February is an odd time for us as the anniversary dates of both of our Triploidy babies bookend this month. Francis Marie (13 weeks gestation) on 2/6 and Mary Grace (21 weeks) on 2/28.  The chances of having one baby with this condition are so low, but to have had 2 babies with triploidy and both dying during the same month of the year....it's just so unusual....hard to wrap my mind around this reality sometimes.  Isabel and I were coming back from a play out in Durham the day before Mary Grace's anniversary, so we stopped by the cemetery (on the way home....which is normally way out of the way for us, so we seldom visit) to add some flowers.

The same tiny blue flowers were growing around the baby headstones that were there February 2009 when we buried her.  I remarked about how Isabel picked a handful when she was nearly 2.  She didn't remember.  They happen to be my favorite flower even though I think they are just a wild grassy weed ;)  http://marygraceholmes.blogspot.com/2009/03/grave-marker.html

Sunday, January 29, 2017

One Post a Month: January

Since I have been an incredibly slack blogger, I've decided to do a post a month for 2017.  I mean, that is 12 posts. 
For. an. entire. year.
I can't fail at this, right?  ;)

I won't guarantee what will be in these once a month posts, but I will guarantee to do one each month.

For starters, I am glad to see 2017!  I LOVED getting to see Cooper meet all his milestones and all that beautiful baby newness and joy that comes with adding a child to our family in 2016.  His first year was such a blessing.  I found myself staring at him a lot over the year and being mesmorized that God would see fit to bestow this little gift onto our family.
Cooper is cruising everywhere, eats like a horse, is by far the biggest baby we have had (finally we had a kid break 20 pounds by 1 year!), and says "uh oh" and "go-go-go".  I would love to have another easy baby like him.

My New Year's Resolution was to drink more water.  I am happy to report I am succeeding!  I aim for 6 16 ounce glasses a day, so 96 ounces/day.  What's crazy is that sometimes I am still thirsty.  Before this I was a terrible water drinker.  I was just too busy before to stop and think "I need to drink", but my dear husband and I now compete to see who can drink the most water each day, so that has helped to keep me on target.

On the farm, we are getting ready for baby goats in just 3 short weeks!  We love our dairy goats here.  We raise only Lamanchas, and recently created a Facebook page for our farm, Bearded Acres.  Lamanchas are one of the less common dairy goat breeds in our area, so it is a neat way to connect with other goat people who also love this particular breed.  I will be really happy to get back to drinking our raw goat milk.  While they are pregnant, our goats are dry (not milking) and we have been drinking grocery store cow's milk.  And when you are used to fresh goat's milk...well, there's obviously no comparison.  Regardless, it's about to get busy around here.

While life trucks on with all of our daily happenings, I can't help but feel like I am watching the majority of the world slip into this dismal abyss. Woah, she jumped off the deep end with that one, you are thinking!  But truly, are there only a few sane people around anymore?  I have this deep sense of needing to become detached from everything I can that is not spiritually beneficial.  TV, Facebook, media & news....  I don't think my family will let me throw the tv out, but I feel like we are short on time for preparing our spiritual "nests" if you will.  I keep thinking, if Christ came tomorrow, am I ready?  Have I done everything in my life today that He has asked of me? 

Deep thoughts, I know.  But I can't shake them lately. 
Prepare, prepare, prepare.  Your hearts.  Your homes.  Your family.