Monday, March 29, 2010

"Bank, file"


I sat down at the computer, ready to write, and have not had an inspiration. Wait! Here it is! Ahh...sometimes it just takes those few words for the fingers and brain to connect. John and I had to run some errands this morning and when we pulled up to our destination he looked across the street and noticed there was a "bank." I was impressed with my two year old. (Perhaps he will be a great financier :). ) We went inside to, uhhmmm, take care of some business. (Pay a speeding ticket at the lesser amount which means I have to go to traffic school to keep the points - whatever those are - off of my license.) John again impressed me with his brain power this morning as he looked around the County Clerks office and said, "files." Well, sure, the entire office was filled with 'em. But, I didn't know my two year old was that observant nor that he even knew what a "file" was!
So, there goes any inspiration out the window again...I'll be off now to order our seeds and plants for the garden. Oh...by the way...our chicks were born today! The Mille Fleurs didn't hatch. But, the Cochin (which are my favorites) are fine and the laying hens are well too! They should arrive in the mail tomorrow!!!!

Friday, March 26, 2010

Still #1

Won the game! Wild and wonderful West Virginia will be conquered!
Happy Friday! What is better than a Friday, I'd like to know!?


John and his cousin Steve


Papa and Gaga


In Papa's shoes

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Bring It!


Our #1 CATS have to win tonite!

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Babies, Dirt, & Pillows (not one of my best titles, I know)

In an email this morning a friend asked if we wanted to buy some herbs for $2 from the Berea College Greenhouse. Support a local student-funded college, get cheap herbs, and buy from a local greenhouse instead of "the man?!" Well, yes! Sign me up! Below is the link to the site if you are interested in more information.






http://www.berea.edu/gardensgreenhouse/briefhistory.asp

Currently, my son has brought his bathroom stool out to the kitchen and climbs up to stand eye-level with the countertops. He likes to say "boo" to me as he pops up. Hmmm....I'm thinking I'm impressed with his ingenuity, but a little irate at the little fingers that investigate everything in site. If I'm silent he'll move on, I've learned. All I have to give is "the look." Leah, my dear friend, knows "the look." She invented it! Her beautiful, precious baby girl was born recently...Saidey Lynne!



We have made some progress in the yard since the weather has warmed up a bit. We've added 6 new boxwoods (I pulled up just as the local nursery truck was pulling up his ramp after unloading the plants to the store. I was so excited!), 2 dark pink knock-out rose bushes, and some plants we had saved and wintered in a small plot in our garden: day lilies, lariope, and hydrangea.



Yesterday, a few local farmers came over to plow a larger garden area than we had last year. We tried no-till last year. It went ok. The soil needs more work that we had thought, though. So, we are tilling once this second year. Then, never again! We'll run over it with a smaller tiller and work the soil well. Then, create beds, paths, etc. The concept of no-till is that the compost and materials added to the soil over time enrich it far more than stripping it each year and disturbing the rich nutrients already there. That's my "gardening for dummies" interpretation, folks.



Below are some pillows that Grandma Neal made for our bed recently! I had found a curtain that I was using for our shower curtain and it just wasn't working out. So, I asked Grandma Neal to use it to create pillows for our bed. This is what she came up with! Aren't they cool?!



John is headed toward an early nap time so that we can go visit our friends, Sara and baby Hannah and Erin and Braden for a play date at a park in Wilmore. It's supposed to be 67 degrees Here in the Bluegrass today!

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Happy 2nd Birthday John!





Saturday, March 20, 2010

Before/After

Well, the excitement on the cliffs was short-lived, as the firemen stayed until 6pm and then left. We didn't hear a word about the dog. On other news, it's been beautiful weather and we have been working outside as well as doing some spring cleaning inside. Take a look at John's window treatments! We hunted around in the woods close to our house and found perfect branches for the "rods." The sheers were premade from fabric.com. The entire thing cost $15!

Before


After

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Yeah, so...I had to blog this b/c my life is just...
Well, it's just my life.

It's a beautiful, sunny day outside. I finished lunch on the porch and got John up from his nap. We walk out to the living room and lo and behold, the local firetruck and his posse are pulling up to the house. I am in my pj's - plaid blue pajama pants and my Asbury College sweatshirt. I am disheveled to say the least. I was not, I repeat, I was not expecting visitors. They jump out right away and climb the back stairs as I'm opening the back door. I think I said, "no fire here!" To which John yells, "No fire." But, it sounds more like, "no fry." No fries, no fire. Not today.

So, then, the man proceeds to tell me about a woman on the phone that is describing a black dog stuck on a cliff on the KY river. Hmmm....there are about 1,000 + cliffs and about half that # of black dogs in the area. "Good luck, " I told the nice man. He laughed. I think he wanted to cry. I wanted to cry for him. But, he asked if they could all go "looking" for the dog. Well, of course, but there are electrified fences around the perimeter of our land and every other farmer in the area. There aren't a lot of gates that allow a person to go to the cliffs on a whim. His partner hollered to him that the lady on the phone was not here. Here? "Here" meaning Jackie? Duh.

So, off they went. Slowly. I don't blame them. How in the world are they going to find such a needle in a haystack?

Oh wait, I think they are back...

To be continued...

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Our neck of the woods...

Spring has sprung on the farm. I looked out the window last week and saw a faint green haze covering parts of the ground and realized that it was grass popping up! The birds are beginning to sing, the noises from the river are louder in the evenings, and the animals are feeling frisky again after their winter slumber.

John's birthday was February 18th and man, oh man, did he have fun with mommy, daddy and both sets of grandparents! Gaga brought Thomas the Train noise makers, napkins and plates and mommy made a yummy cake with Thomas' smile on top.

After the big birthday bash, Gaga, Papa, mommy and John headed down to Nashville, TN to visit John's cousin Steve for the first time! We practiced saying "Steve" on the way and John was a pro by the time he shyly said his name for him! He took to him immediately (...a boy's boy all the way) and wanted to hold his hand while Steve showed us around the Vandy campus. He had fun in our hotel room trying on Papa's shoes and eating yummy breakfasts every morning. He woke one night for two hours and Gaga and mommy consoled him b/c he missed "Daddy!!!!" so badly. Poor little guy. He finally exhausted us and himself!

Mom and Dad Neal came down to help us upstairs as we prepare to finish the closet over the stairs, the walls around the bedroom and bathroom and more. We had all come down with a stomach flu (Gaga, Papa, mommy, John, Grandma Neal and daddy) and didn't get as much done as we would have liked. But, we had a friend come over and work on our rocks (read: boulders!) around the house. We put them in place and need to till the dirt (mud for now!) for spring grass and beds! I am beyond excited to have some color in the yard, some order in the chaos that is my life outside these four walls!

We are pleased with how our Ameracaunas have feathered out and are still not sure if we have two rooster and two hens or 1 rooster and 3 hens. Time will tell! (Or, lungs and a comb will tell.) We moved them outside about 1 week ago and they are quite content with their new digs. The other two mature hens like to hang out under their coop and talk about laying an egg. They get around the laying at about 11am. So far they alternate every other day. So, we have 1 egg a day. I say that's a good example of quality communicators...
And, in addition to those 6 chickens, we have 30 coming from Ohio in the mail on March 31st! We are excited, as those are laying hens as well as roosters that will be dinner one day! We hope to be able to sell the eggs and need to come up with a farm logo!

In other news, some friends are adopting 2 boys from Ethiopia and you can visit them here http://kinnells.blogspot.com/2010/03/1st-anniversary-party.html We are so excited for them! Their twin girls have been home one year and we all celebrated with a party last week! I won't duplicate that post...Amy said it perfectly. Our dear friends who introduced us to THOGL are in process again too! They expect their son, Logan, at the end of March. Though, we are in prayer for them b/c we just heard yesterday that they are having difficulties with paperwork on both the Taiwan end and the U.S. Lift them up if you will!

My cousin, Laura, who was a jr. bridesmaid in our wedding, will be going to Sr. prom this year. She will look stunning in this dress...http://www.eddress4u.com/long-gowns-8697.htm#! She is busy with her senior year, working at NHA and picking out a college.

So, as you have read, we have had a busy March already and we're only halfway through the month. I, of course, tried uploading images, but after 1+ entire hour of failed attempts I had to give up. Hopefully they'll come later!

Irish blessings this March,
the Neals