Friday, October 30, 2009

The Family Dinner Table

Perfect Dinner Table

A table cloth that's slightly soiled
Where greasy little hands have toiled;
The napkins kept in silver rings,
And only ordinary things
From which to eat, a simple fare,
And just the wife and kiddies there,
And while I serve, the clatter glad
Of little girl and little lad
Who have so very much to say
About the happenings of the day.

Four big round eyes that dance with glee,
Forever flashing joys at me,
Two little tongues that race and run
To tell of troubles and of fun;
The mother with a patient smile
Who knows that she must wait awhile
Before she'll get a chance to say
What she's discovered through the day.
She steps aside for girl and lad
Who have so much to tell their dad.

Our manners may not be the best;
Perhaps our elbows often rest
Upon the table, and at times
That very worst of dinner crimes,
That very shameful act and rude
Of speaking ere you've downed your food,
Too frequently, I fear, is done,
So fast the little voices run.
Yet why should table manners stay
Those tongues that have so much to say?

At many a table I have been
Where wealth and luxury were seen,
And I have dined in halls of pride
Where all the guests were dignified;
But when it comes to pleasure rare
The perfect dinner table's where
No stranger's face is ever known:
The dinner hour we spend alone,
When little girl and little lad
Run riot telling things to dad.

Edgar Albert Guest

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

What the garden brought in...

I didn't post too many gardening articles this summer, so I thought I should wrap it all up here. In midsummer when the sun is sweltering and the weeds are awful, one wonders why do we have such a huge garden!? But, once all is brought in and preserved for the winter, it is time to sit back and feel good, right?

We had plenty of sweet corn, and still have some frozen. the ears were not too big, so next year we need to focus more on fertilizing them better.

I was able to can lots of tomato juice and some soup, but did not have quite enough to make ketchup and salsa this year.

In Iowa the season is hardly long enough for peppers, but if I have enough plants I can still harvest plenty.

Sweet potatoes! I never raised them before, but tried it this year, and was very pleased when I was able to dig up several pounds of these. That's more than I've ever bought in a whole year, so that is great! Now, I can make as much sweet potato casserole as I want to. HMMM YUMMMM.

Carrots, carrots and carrots! Not very sweet around here, but the juice is drinkable. We also like them cooked and in soups.

This is what will keep us healthy this winter. This looks like a crazy amount of onions, but we had to throw some out because they got rotten and I could'nt keep up with cutting and freezing fast enough. We might still have enough to see us through the year.

One thing I didn't take photos of is pototoes. We got boxes full of those stacked away already, and as slowly as we're eating them, they will surely last all year.

And then there were the bunches of sunberries; I have some bags of those in the freezer for pies. We have also enjoyed fried okra several times this year, which was a real treat.

"Moreover, that every man should eat and drink and taste enjoyment in all his labor; it is the gift of God." Eccelesiastes 3:13

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Goodbye, Dixie

Today we gave up our baby horse and her partner, Trixie. I know, its not long ago when we got Trixie, and we would have loved to keep Dixie, but there comes a time in life when you have to weigh between what you need to do and what you would love to do, and sometimes you just have to do the sensible thing. for us it meant giving up our horses.

One last treat of apple for our girl. we had decided to sell the horses at an auction, until we found out most horses are shipped out of country for slaughter. We couldn't bear to see our beautiful Tennessee Walker being slaughtered and fed to the dogs, so we were glad when we found someone that wanted to take her in and care for her.

We will never regret that we had horses, and when Dixie's mama Rose was still with us, we had lots of fun riding her. Our children have learned a lot about horses and farm life because we had horses.

We are gonna miss not having her, but it's for the best. There's not much use having two horses that need to be trained, but nobody has the time to train, and having horses costs money and time, both of which we don't have plenty extra nowadays. We can always get another horse later on.

I see relief written all over his face. Now, its time to hang up that hat, and get back to the engineering life!

Friday, October 16, 2009

The bad and the good

Today did not go as hoped. I needed some winter clothes for the children; it's stunning how I can't keep them supplied.... Anyway, so I went first and bought my groceries. After I had shopped and loaded them, I realized I had not bought the flax, so back in I went while I left the kiddos on the car, after strict instructions to stay buckled up and not to unlock or open doors for ANYONE. I don't usually do that, leaving them like that, but sometimes you just do what you have to do. In a small country store, I think it's quite safe, but still, you never know.

Well, after that I went to kidworks for clothes, and when I got there I found out they did not have any carts to put my baby in. Duh. How do they expect me to shop in peace if I have to carry around a 24 lb baby?!!! They would not even let me borrow their strollers. That is all right, because they want to sell them, but I don't know how they expect to sell baby clothes when moms can't even put their babies down anywhere safe. As I went out (after buying just one sleeper) they said they hope I come again. I just grunted. I don't feel like going back anytime soon. And then the prices were through the roof! 35, 45 for a jacket? For crying out loud, I better head to Walmart.

I ended up going to Salvation army, but no clothes there worth looking at. I did find a treasure, which is the good thing. Keep reading, and you'll see...

Well, so we were hungry after that and I bought something at Taco Bell. I decided to quickly go see what Goodwill might have after we were done eating, but then my baby fell asleep... I could not be so mean as to wake him up and make him go through another shopping session, so I decided to just head on home.

Anyway, here is my treasure. The two cutest, smallest oil lamps I have ever seen. Since I collect oil lamps, this was a real keeper. So, my day was somewhat unsuccessful, but at least I have two more oil lamps! That is always a good thing, right?

Here is one that is burning beside one my big lamps. It works perfectly.

It actually fits in my hand. I have never seen such a cute lil lamp, have you???

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Welcome Fall!

Let's see what's new... hubby's parents were here for the weekend and his sister and brother-in-law, so we had some fun then! Now it is fall. Full blown. Apples are falling, cold wind blowing, fire crackling in the wood stove, and it's time to eat those pumpkins and squash. I made some soup from butternut squash which my neighbors gave me recently. It was absolutely delicious. And the other day I bought a big pumpkin from Walmart. Here comes pie, and pumpkin soup, and maybe some bread. Applesauce making has started.

Fall, it has become one of my most favorite seasons; after summer, of course...
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