Spring Cleaning

I skipped pump day in favor of deep cleaning my house. I washed walls, and dusted, and vaccumed in corners and behind furniture… something I often neglect to do. And with the blinds open and the sun pouring in it seems brighter and warmer. And of course it actually IS brighter and warmer.  But more cheerful.

I’m trying to arrange to meet up with Lindsey of nwbackyardveggies.com to see if she’ll walk me through processing a fryer. I’ve watched a few videos so I know HOW to do it technically. I just had this fear that I’ll get all set up. Breed some rabbits. Grab my tools. And then I’ll look down at the fryers and they’ll all turn into Clover from Sophia The First and I’ll be immediately unable to take off their heads.

I’m also super excited to get my Whole30 started. I have a huge grocery list based on a bunch of recipes I’ve recently collected on Pinterest. I’m awaiting a dehydrator (a surprise gift from Mr. Music) in the mail one of these days. I’ll be making fruit snacks, fruit leather, jerky and paleo trail mixes… Can’t wait. 🙂 Still not on board with trying kale or brussel sprouts, though, so those are not on my list. I think I’ll start with a Whole30 meal tonight. Like that steak and radish recipe from Holly Would If She Could… It’s sunny, after all. A perfect day for grilling.

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Homestead Hopeful

I think we’re going to enjoy this new schedule that gives my husband a three day weekend. We had Friday to play around. In this case we took the kids out to the mall and let them play at a bounce house, and went shopping for new work shoes for Mr. Music. Saturday was for relaxing. The husband ushered us all out the door shortly after 9am and dropped me off for a surprise hour long massage, sugar scrub and peppermint scalp massage. Sunday we had church (my weekend in the nursery) followed up by our trip up to the hospital to pick up my daughter’s medications. We of course stopped at the mall up there for fun after. M got to have his first trip to the salon and now has a real professional haircut. It’s a little short for a faux-hawk. Apparently the woman was trying to hide his cow lick. But it spikes nicely and will grow into the right length for a fauxhawk shortly. Of course we ended the night by watching the return of Game Of Thrones.

I’ve been spending spare time reading about raising rabbits for meat. There’s a lot of information out there about how to house them, feed them, etc. I’m going to raise mine outside. I’m thinking I’ll do it partially colony style. Keeping the does and young bucks together, but separating the breeding buck so I can control breeding. I’ll keep his hutch/cage adjacent so he can have nose to nose contact though. I read a lot about pasturing but it seems like something I’d just want a lot more (flat) yard for so I’m likely not going to do that. I’ll just take them out in basically want amounts to a baby play yard for a bit each day and let them play/hop/graze. I spoke to K about this. She’s been begging for a pet bunny for the last year. And I said we might get some, but they’d be food except for the breeders. She said she was ok with that. I figure when I end up having to cull them in a few years, we’ll put the does to stew and let K take the buck inside to keep. So I don’t have to break her little heart. My husband suggests we name the bunnies after characters from GoT since they’re all doomed to die. I think that’s about the most hilarious thing ever. He also suggests that I keep the pelts to make stuff… but I’m not exactly suzy homemaker when it comes to sewing. In fact, I’ve got a $185 sewing machine just sitting in my closet that I’d sell if I thought I could because I just suck at it. And I don’t particularly enjoy it. So I’ll likely try to sell or trade them. Probably will make and sell lucky rabbits feet as well. And use the ears to make dog treats. I don’t have or enjoy dogs,  but it seems like a good market. A lot of people around here love organic homegrown things, and love their dogs like children.

Anyway… It’s Monday. Back to the homeschool grind.

Whole 9 Life

My SIL introduced me to Whole30 last year and it really worked wonders for our family. And I’m getting super excited to start our second one after we do our grocery shopping. Which will be next week some time. This weekend we’re going to have to go pick up some meds for K. That mail order stuff was so annoying I have honestly decided it is more worth it to drive up north once or twice a month. It’d be something else if her meds weren’t compounded or were more readily available at pharmacies in child-sized doses… or if her insurance would do more than one month supply at a time… But no. That would be too easy. The worst part being that now they’ve staggered our refill schedule by taking their sweet time filling and sending prescriptions. So I’m not even sure I’ll be able to pick them all up. I’m calling today so wish me luck. Tangent. Sorry. My point being… Since we’ll be up in a more metropolitan area, we’ll be stopping into Whole Foods and Uwajimaya to look for a few things I just can’t seem to find locally. And maybe hit TJs on the way home for some Kerry Gold. It’s seriously so much cheaper there that I’m questioning how grocery stores determine prices in the first place…

I’m stock piling Whole30 friendly recipes on Pinterest. Pinterest is my addiction. You know… besides coffee. And the scale. I admit it… I stepped on the scale again today. But it was down 5.5 lbs so I’m ok with that. I imagine it’s mostly water weight but whatever. Down is down! I don’t know if it is working out or my love of new foods but it’s improving my mood. I can’t wait to go shopping, stuff my fridge full of good food and just get cooking. Although I may have to resist the temptation to make Nom Nom Paleo Cracklin’ Chicken several times a month. I made roasted broccoli (or cauliflower) with Whole30 friendly homemade chili garlic sauce, olive oil and a pinch of Himalayan sea salt… Seriously. My favorite meal ever. The trick to softer oven roasted broccoli, btw, is to toss a TBS of water on the pan halfway through. My family doesn’t like their broccoli crunchy.

Anyway, because of this lifestyle change, I’ve been checking out prices on meat. I’ve looked at stores, farmer’s markets, farms, and butchers… And I’ve seriously decided I ought to raise my own meat. I’m currently working on getting my husband on board and just hoarding information on (you guessed it) Pinterest. Eventually I’d like to have a couple goats, ducks and chickens. Maybe a cow one day. But for now I’d like to start gardening and then raising some rabbits for meat. If you know me, you know I tend to just kill plants. So that’ll be the hard part. Rabbits will be easy. Not so much the killing. That’ll take some getting used to. I’m looking into New Zealand Whites. My daughter will be happy to have the breeders… as long as she doesn’t realize we’re killing the others.

Get Fit

I’ve had a hard time getting into a workout routine. But taking my measurements and a step on the scale yesterday (after wondering why the outfit I chose for Sunday’s babyshower was so snug…) was a HUGE wake up call. I’m not going to post them but I will say that I weigh as much as I tend to after I have a baby. So… yuck. I’m all soft and my clothes are fighting me. My husband has started a new schedule at work (4 tens) and as such, has to be up and out an hour earlier. Leaving me a good 1.5hrs before my kiddos get up to work out and sit down with a cup of post work out green tea. Obviously if I’m dieting, I’ll have to abandon my unhealthy morning coffee most days. I tried “ballet bootcamp” because I found it on YouTube and got a great workout. It’s definitely a top cardio choice. And I’d like to lift at least 3 days a week. And use Sunday as a day for just stretching. I can’t have a rest day with no stretching because it’ll kill my bad knees.

I’ve started having the kids do Cosmic Yoga before A takes a nap. They’re obviously not in need of any diet or weightloss but healthy habits start early. I’ve been half-assedly paleo (and thus the kids have been as well) for a while now. But I’m going to really clamp down starting this month. Whole30 style. With the exception of Easter treats. And even that will be as healthy and limited as possible. My daughter has already started the Easter countdown, so of course we’ll have a big chocolate bunny. And participate in the egg hunt at church.

Pump Day

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It’s pump day. This is a cell phone picture, but those are my Louboutins in the kitchen. Which, by the way, is NOT a place I’d actually recommend wearing them unless you’re filthy rich and can replace them left and right.

So I’ve be lax on posting about school. K is doing well at everything… But after church last week, I noticed that this child can NOT fill out a worksheet. We don’t tend to do them. I can’t even begin to describe what was wrong with it. So this week we’ve been focusing on spelling, writing, spacing and now I’m adding some worksheets to the program just so it doesn’t look like we’re doing nothing around her when we get back to church. Embarrassing. You don’t even think about these things when your kids are just breezing through lessons on penmanship, spelling and whatnot. Math is coming easy to everyone. Which is a relief. It was always easy for me as a child and I’m not sure if I’d know what to do if the concepts were difficult for the children. Although A has taken to skipping to 100 after he counts to 20 and he thinks it is hilarious.

A is actually going through a phase. It’s pretty funny. You wouldn’t think a 3 year old could be so… clever… But he is. And he KNOWS what he is doing. He makes “the face.” Yesterday, I asked him to stop winding things on daddy’s guitar. So he sat behind it and unscrewed a piece of the stand. Loop-holed by a preschooler.

Everyone in the house is sick so we’re taking it easy but we’re still doing school. I figure unless I actually get sick too and just can’t even fathom reading aloud to the kids, there is no reason not to at least do some relaxed lessons. Especially since we didn’t do hardly a thing last week with daddy home. Let’s just count that as an early spring break, shall we?

Raw

In addition to my usual household chores, I’ve spent a chunk of my morning researching raw milk. My SIL shared an article on the health benefits of raw milk. And it got me looking into local sources and prices. I’m pretty sure in the process I stumbled across my neighbor’s blog… apparently having written a post on the subject a couple years ago. Not that I know my neighbors. I live in the ghetto and tend to avoid people anyway because of my crippling social anxiety and awkwardness. Something I’m pretty sure is well masked by my cheerful, extroverted nature over the computer. I may not be cheerful. I might be sarcastic. But I think I’m nice, and I guess that’s what really matters. Anyway, I talked to my SIL about it a bit and think I might try convincing my husband that it’s worth working a trip to Tenino into the budget to get raw milk for drinking, and still using the store bought stuff for cooking. There are some local farms and stores that offer it, but $10-11 a gallon for a family of 5 is a bit much. Considering we’re making it just within our budget (if that) most months on just our usual food expenses. I’ve been sneaking us away from eating ANY processed foods (organic or gluten free included) and from grains. And since the higher the quality your meat and veggies, the more they cost, and our family is growing (the individuals, not the size of our family) our costs have, predictably, increased some.

Today I am wearing my new bra, to test out its comfort for all day wear, before doing a comprehensive review of it. Sneak peak of the review: I love this bra. Although my kids are kind of surprised to see me about the house in street clothes. I’m one of those stay at home moms who spends 90% of her days at home in pajamas. I’m a shut in. What difference does it make? Haha. I know Fly Lady would disagree, from what I’ve heard from friends. But it works for me. Especially since my wardrobe is pretty small. What if I waste a good outfit on a day I do nothing and can’t use it on the weekend?

Oh, back to the raw milk thing… Apparently there is a coffee shop in Port Townsend that serves raw milk by the glass for drinking, and in their cappuccinos and lattes. Mr. Music and I were just talking about maybe day tripping to PT soon with the kidlets anyway. You know where I’m totally going when we do. Since my littles (especially A) love Grandma’s raw goat milk, I’m pretty sure raw cow’s milk will seem like a real treat.

K’s cellcept FINALLY came in the mail yesterday. We switched to using a mail order pharmacy. It’s about the most annoying process in the entire world. And I’m pretty sure it’s staffed by morons. But it’s finally sorted out. I’m going to stick it out for now… but if they have problems with refills, we’re going back to driving to Seattle once a month. Because this is just ridiculous. Anyway, the cellcept. It came in a powder instead of a liquid. My husband informs me that shipping liquid medications has different regulations and they probably chose to do this because it’s cheaper. I’m ok with that, although I was surprised. The problem is the instructions. “Pour approximately 94ml of water into a graduated cylinder…”  Wait…. What? Who honestly keeps a graduated cylinder around? So I had to convert ml to oz to tbs before I could mix them. Overall, I’m just thankful it arrived just as we’d run out of the other bottle.

Legos

We gave our kids a box of 600 legos at their birthday party. And went to see the Lego Movie the day after. I can’t get “Everything is awesome” out of my head. And my children have become lego addicts. Or “Master Builders.” We spend hours on the living room floor with legos. Making up stories, building houses, stores, people…. And me sneaking in quick lessons in math using blocks or stacks of legos.

My first bra arrived yesterday. I took some pictures of it. I’m holding off on a review until I’ve got the other one as well. Since having a comparison of Polish brands is nice.

I’ve been perusing the Freya website to look at their SS14 collection of swimwear. They have a few cute things. But I kinda hate swimsuit shopping. Everything is always expensive, and it’s incredibly rare that I find something in my size. Enough whining for the day…