Mother’s Day

Family:
My mother and father came to visit and help us out. Hallelujah! We need all the help we can get around here. My eight-year-old is into cooking, so I thought making the chocolate chip cookie sandwiches that Elliana wanted to make would be a good activity for them to do together.
IMG_0092When I help Elliana cook, I am often holding my tongue and sometimes my breath. I wonder if my mom had to do the same thing when she taught me to cook. I sure don’t remember her acting as tense as I feel when I’m in the kitchen with my kids. IMG_0095She’s an awesome mother and grandma.

Farm Education:
The text this time said, “We [Brad and Elliana] are stuck. You need to come out to the field. Bring chain off cherry picker”

I was picturing the tractor in the middle of the field, but it was just the pick-up stuck in the soft ditch. It’s kind of complicated how it got there, but Elliana said it was the most exciting day of her life. 
Stuck PickUp PickUp in a ditch
This was my first pull a pick up out of the mud experience, and it came right out on the first attempt.

Update:
FIVE YEARS after buying this house and saying we were going to change the countertops, we finally don’t have a grimy back splash that’s made of the same thing as the countertop.

kitchen before

Before

kitchen after

After

The lovely green counter is also GONE!

Before

Before

After

After

I could’ve waited to take the ‘after’ picture until Brad got the black outlets installed; but considering the current season, I figured it would be better if I got the picture now – before the counters had the time to collect their usual collection of stuff. If these picture show nothing else, they should at least encourage us to get all that random stuff off the countertop. 

Psalm 139: 17
How precious also are Your thoughts to me, O God!
How vast is the sum of them!

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House Stuff

Home Improvements:
We’ve been waiting almost a year for someone to come back and work on a few projects at our house. This was THE week! Having to wait that long makes you complain much less about the mess it causes. These beautiful doors are now in the hands of someone who thinks they can repurpose them.
bifold doorsI was delighted to remove them from our property. It’s still a work in progress so no “after” picture yet.

Since we were having drywall work done, Brad saw that has the perfect excuse to take down our center kitchen light and put in can lights. He’d been wanting to for a long time, and I just kept telling him not to waste the time and money on it.
removed center kitchen light Sorry I don’t have a real “before” picture, but it made an amazing difference. It makes it look much more modern and bright even with our cupboards from the 70’s/80’s. can lights in kitchenSpeaking of the 80’s!
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Speaking of houses, this is my great-great grandparents’ home that we got to check out when we visited my grandparents1900's home falling apart houseHas it ever occurred to you your house could be uninhabited and falling apart someday? IMG_9994 Do you think your great-great-great grandchildren will come stand on your back steps? They would hopefully be a legacy you could be proud of more than your house no matter what its condition is. IMG_9984The outhouse:1900's outhouseWe went inside the house a little but didn’t want to fall through the floor or be scared by a random rodent. The rocking horse in the entry was creepy enough. old rocking horseHow about the all natural crackle paint on that trim?IMG_9996After we were there my grandma told us there were a lot of secrets in that house. My great-great grandpa used to buy something whenever he went to town and then put it away in a room upstairs. Wish I would’ve gone to see what the upstairs looked like!

We also went to look at where my grandparents had their farm. I remember my grandma taking care of her chickens in this chicken house. It must be a sign that I need chickens.chicken houseThey augered their grain into the window at the top of this building. old grain buildingMy 92 year old grandpa remembers tinning the roof of that building with my cousin and noticed that some of the nails were starting to come out of it. Wish we could’ve jumped out and fixed it for him. IMG_9974Such a good reminder that our things will fall apart and we will fall apart. Let us hope in the God who doesn’t change, the One who even this fierce, spring, midwest wind obeys.

Hello July

July Corn in Different Stages Farming:
Some corn actually might be knee high this 4th of July because of the wet spring, but it is quickly growing. In the above picture you can see Brad’s pivot (the tallest corn in the back) and a corner of his dry land. Corn is actually growing in the middle of the dryland. It was just too wet to plant there when the rest was planted, so it got planted even later.

Pivots are running or will be once they’re fixed enough to work correctly. IMG_9226 Brad is still spraying like a crazy man. He came home one day this week in the middle of the week. Little Liza was SO EXCITED!IMG_9179She wakes up asking for “Da Da” and walks to the back door saying “Da Da?” anytime it opens. It was just a cruel tease. He found more to spray. I’m considering if I should try and sell that machine, but maybe that’s the headache from earlier in the week speaking.

Small Town Nebraska:
He did make it to all our T-ball games. Elliana got to have him as an assistant coach.

IMG_9229 The following tell you a lot about small town Nebraska
-All the girls on your T-Ball team go to your school.
-You’ll play with the same girls on your next ball team.
-You have your dad and aunt as coaches.
-You have a cousin on your team.
-You have 5 girls on your team who have younger brothers on your brother’s T-Ball team.

IMG_9249This one is the best: When you are out of milk for your one year old and the grocery store is closed, there is a kind person that will unlock it for you and let you buy your milk after the T-ball game!

House Update:

How many differences can you find?

Before:
IMG_8951After:
IMG_9183I just love that picture!

Thoughts?

Help:IMG_2040Those bifold doors are going!!!! In their place will go a single normal size door and some drywall. We’re going to replace that window too, but I’d appreciate your thoughts. Leave the window where it is, move the window over, or put in a sliding door. The table has no other place to go and the window is centered on the outside wall. Spew thoughts now.

Farming:
We’re back to begging God for rain. Instead of green wheat starting to grow, a lot of it just looks dead.

Quite a few farmers around here now have brighter shops thanks to Brad installing high bay T5’s. He’s rushing to get all his major electrical projects done so he can do what he moved here to do, farm. He got all of this conduit underground today .

IMG_2016

Small Town Nebraska:
We escaped from the daily grind and went to the REALLY BIG city. It never fails that when you leave for the big city with an empty car, you come back with it packed with everything you found to buy and even then still feel like you need to shop more. That’s how I feel, and I’m not that big of a shopper!

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My Little Garden

I thought it would be fun to take a picture of my little garden every two weeks because a garden changes so much throughout the garden season. I did a great job at the beginning getting my pictures every two weeks, and then for some reason(s) I can’t put my finger on it felt like I lost all control and organization in life. As you will see, my garden reflects this craziness. Every two weeks went out the window. God is a God of order, so I’m fighting to get things back in control without becoming even more control freakish than I already am. Where is the balance?!

So I can quit trying to remember to take a picture of my garden every two weeks, here are the pictures up today. You will see no more after this.

 

 

Bathroom Remodel

Before (and before I could take a panoramic shot)

For counter and storage space, we made do with lovely green stacking crates and once we had our cabinets in we used one of them too.

For counter and storage space, we made do with lovely green stacking crates and once we had our cabinets in we used one of them too. The toilet is to the left of green crates.

Wheelchair accessible shower

Huge bathtub and a tall, unattached to anything cabinet

During

Plumping parts spewed all over the basement

Plumping parts spewed all over the basement

Shower, wall, tub removed

Shower, wall, tub removed

After
After the remodelThis picture doesn’t show you the can lights Brad added in shower and above the washer and dryer. It is no surprise that our bathroom/laundry room is well lit and well “outletted”.  Since this picture Brad put shelves for laundry baskets above the washer and dryer. Does anyone else sort their laundry over six different ways? We still need trim, but our basement has needed that for over a year and a half. Considering that, you should be shocked I’m able to show you after pictures within a year of showing you before pictures!

I should also say my main contributions to this bathroom were buying the shelves and catching as much dust as possible with the shop vac hose when Brad was messing with drywall. We had a contractor come work for a couple of days, Brad’s mom did some drywall mudding and sanding, and other than that it was all Brad. He’s seriously amazing.

Our Life

I love seeing people’s beautiful, clean homes. I am often disgruntled that ours is not that way. I present to you a recent picture of our kitchen table.
You could play I spy with it for quite a while. I spy craft supplies. I spy food. I spy an odd bi-folding door. I spy plates of food that children did not want to eat at supper time. I spy a comb and detangler. I spy a battleship; and yes, I spy a TV.

The TV is there because the shelves in our living room were in the process of being painted. Here’s a before and after shot in one oddly angled picture.

It seems our house is in that state more often that not, but the benefit to that is it makes days when it actually feels tidy quite relaxing.

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In case the top picture makes you think you want to play Battleship with your three and five year old, might I suggest only playing in pairs. The “partner” of the three year old will have to be willing to only put pegs in the upper field. The 3 year old will take over the bottom of the board. I would also recommend playing the adapted version.

Covering part of the battlefield, helps the game fit into a time appropriate for their attention span. You’d think the special education part of me would’ve thought of that, but it was all Brad’s idea.