In the beginning, JD adamantly only wanted two children. I thought that four would be perfect. Once we caught God's vision of putting orphans into families, our plan was multiplied by God. We are currently blessed with 12 children; five biological, six adopted and one more waiting in Ethiopia. Our first adoption was from the U.S., the next three were from Liberia, West Africa, and our last two were from Ethiopia. We are supporting our 12th child in Ethiopia after her adoption could not pass court.

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Renaissance Fair

(It took some effort for me to spell Renaissance correctly, but I think I got it.)

 After studying this time period in school year last year, when I saw the BOGO Groupon deal for a semi-local Renaissance fair, I bought tickets a few months back. Fortunately, Friday I checked the dates to find out they were expiring in two days; so while we didn't miss it, JD did because he was on the men's retreat at church. (It takes an extra push for me to do these events without him!)

I hadn't been to a Renaissance event since high school, and it definitely draws an interesting crowd, but the kids had a blast. 

It was small, but plenty to do for the majority of a day.

It was humorous to see the kids pick their crimes -

The three youngest girls and I attended a doll making workshop and left with handmade rag dolls that are super cute. We sent James, Tori and Elijah to "Medieval Kenieval" while we were there.

Tori was kind enough to wait for and take some picture of Elijah with the reckless daredevil; Elijah was pretty impressed with how they turned out.

I took about five pictures on the way out and this is the best I got. Selah looked exactly like this in each one, because she told me "it was funny". I decline to agree. With this many kids, I need at least an attempt of a smile!


Saturday, May 13, 2017

Theater Week

Thursday we traveled with our CC group to the play "Beauty and the Beast" in Richmond. It was done by a professional group that regularly perform there and was really, really good.

Yesterday, we went on a long one day road trip to Sight and Sound theater in Lancaster, PA to see the production of Jonah. It was unbelievable! 
We had never been before but I see now why people make the trip. There are only two Sight and Sounds in the country - one in Missouri and this one in PA. It is far more than you think of when you use the word play; as the theater uses three sides, and the host of actors and animals often occupy the aisles. While the timing wasn't the best for us, we were offered reduced tickets and took advantage of it.

I can't recommend it enough! Jonah is playing this year and Jesus will be the new production next year. I hope we can return!


Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Patio - Part Two

My patio secret is Sankrete Patio Sand. James dug out all the weeds and the dirt between the stones that grew prolific weeds. He then spread the sand between the stones and blew the excess off the top. Once it was as close to perfect as we strive for, he wet the whole patio. After 24 hours, it turns to a concrete product that won't let weeds grow.

We are currently in the "don't walk on it for 24 hours" stage, so we have it elaborately blocked off. I'm just thrilled to mark off "weed the patio" from my chore list!


Saturday, May 6, 2017

Exciting Product

 James has spent a few days working with a landscaper and he told me about a product that eliminates weeds between stone. Since I have spent hours weeding the patio (which is as annoying as it sounds), I was all ears. 

When I stopped at a local garden center, I asked them and they showed me to the product. Maybe I'm the only one who has never heard of it, but you put it between the stones, water it and let it harden into a concrete filler. 

I offered James the job and he cleaned the patio well today. He had to dig out and blow the sand and dirt that was between the stones. Within the next few days we will put in the "super special patio sand" and then it can't be walked on for 24 hours which will be challenging!

See how all the weeds grew in the cracks?

They are gone today - 

While James did that, JD worked on the never-ending wiring job in the garage and the kids and I planted 5 of the 7 garden beds. We pulled out 4 full wagon loads of weeds.

Before I started the garden, I laid three bags of grass seed. While I was waiting on the promised rain, I had to keep running the chickens off of every time I saw them.  



Wednesday, May 3, 2017

Spring Days

Life is full and happy. Our friends are plentiful and wonderful and I am so thankful that we have put down roots here and do life with so many others.

My dear friend, Tonya, got married last Saturday. Here the children are helping with the aftermath organization. 

Sunday we had a church plant prayer get-together. We are doing a church plant in our community out of the larger current church we attend about 30 miles away. It will officially be a church this fall, but participating in the getting it off the grounds is exciting.

We had a Richmond doctor appointment, followed by our usual Chick Fil A lunch.

This is Ms. Jane, who was a neighbor of ours back in the neighborhood before we moved to play farmer. She has also moved, but we were thrilled to go visit her. She asked if I could bring a goat or two, so I loaded up Agnes and Alice.They took a nap on us and then enjoyed the fenced backyard.

See their grass? It doesn't matter where they live, the grass always looks like this. It is probably my largest coveting struggle when I come home and stare at my grass. The goats had a hard time finding a single weed, but they did nibble the pine trees and played on the hill.   

Today the youngest three and I hung out at the river while Julia was in an appointment across the street. I love this age - give them some running water and a few rocks and they are so happy! They don't even have phones to distract them! I'm enjoying it while I can!