Monday, February 29, 2016


We went to the doctor Friday. Things are looking good, except we do have to start "the diet" again. We went off of it last year in an effort to get some lower sugar levels for both of us and to help me lose weight. So much for that!!! In case you're wondering what the diet entails, many people think it's wonderful. It's really not. Take the quiz below and see for yourself:

The Calcium Oxalate Kidney Stone Prevention Diet

Just shoot me now! We met with the doctor today, and we are now back on the crazy diet. Think you know what's healthy? Take this quiz!

  1. To prevent CO kidney stones, what food is the WORST to eat?

  2. spinach
    iceberg lettuce

  3. What food is the BEST to eat to prevent CO kidney stones?

  4. bacon

  5. Which is the better snack?

  6. nuts & berries
    a granola bar

  7. Which fruit is good for you?

  8. berries

  9. You're making a sandwich. Which bread should you use?

  10. wheat bread
    white bread

  11. It's carb time! Which potato is best for you?

  12. sweet potato
    white potato

  13. Time to take your vitamins! Which should you INCREASE?

  14. Vitamin C

  15. What is the best way to eat carrots?

  16. raw

  17. Which soup is the best choice?

  18. vegetable soup
    chicken noodle

  19. Which drinks are the better choice?

  20. buttermilk, lemonaid, green tea
    chocolate milk, black tea, grape juice

Let's see how you did? How would you survive on a low oxalate diet?

Friday, February 26, 2016

Bryan Rd Elementary, weeks 3 & 4

It's interesting seeing all the vehicles parked at night. It's like seeing a children's book. 

Debris fields

There's been at least four of these tree/brush pile that were larger than the vehicles.

Not sure, but this may be one of the retaining ponds. You can see more equipment through the trees and over the hills.

Debris burning begins...

"Jaws" kept adding brush to the fire, even though the flames are higher than it. I would not want that job.

And the rains came...lots of smoke, but the fires kept going.

Pipes rolled in on a big truck.

End of week 4 view. 

Wednesday, February 17, 2016


In the midst of life's insanity that we're calling 2016, the ladies at church are reading a book titled Awe. Even though I've not been able to attend any of the meetings nor have I kept pace with the group, the content of this book has been SO timely. What could be a better time to be reminded to focus on having the proper awe of my creator than in times of upheaval? When my plan A, plan B, plan C mind desperately craves to organize just one aspect of my life and all it gets is "maybe, maybe not", what better time to have my focus sharpened on the One who is sovereign and truly has things organized and in control?

Between all the uncertainties and questions with Bobby's health, my Mom's deteriorating health, a very crazy election cycle (but thankfully calm classes so far), and just trying to juggle everything in life, I've been reminded how much that I am NOT in control of my life, no matter how badly I want to be.

I'll wait until I've finished the book to give a review, but I don't think I've ever been as thankful and appreciative for a non-Bible study Christian book as I am for this one.

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Bryan Rd Elementary School - week 2

I had quite the surprise when I came home from the hospital last week to get some things done late Friday afternoon. Things had changed quite a bit since Tuesday night!

I don't remember if this was Monday or Tuesday, but the two units were blocked and placed together.
More equipment and a little more clearing...
Friday afternoon - the big equipment was everywhere!

Fence is up from the edge of the creek (where our pond drains) and up through our yard to the chicken pen.
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They kept working, despite the snow...

Hopefully this week I can get back on my original plan of posting school pics every Friday afternoon. We're caught up on this for now!

Sunday, February 14, 2016

catching up

In the last month we've spent 11 days at the hospital (and that's not counting the number of days sick at home!) and went several days without power due to the ice storm,  so I've had to let many things slide, including this blog.  So hopefully I can get caught up on a few posts this week.

Today- week one's photos from the future site of Bryan Rd Elementary School.
Day one - starting to clear the field
This little machine moves fast, knocking over small trees and upending their stumps as if they were seedlings!

placing the pipe in the new driveway
placing rocks on the black stuff for an entrance

We turned the chickens out after the work stopped. They immediately went to play "Queen of the Hill", though they were a bit confused that their paths among the weeds and dirt spots were all gone.
View at the end of Day One...a bit heart-wrenching though nice to see the field somewhat neat again.
Delivery of the work base. Some more clearing was done over the hill (out of site from our house), but that was all the visible work from our place. The fact that it rained probably had a lot to with it as well.

We are certainly in a time of transition on our little dirt road!

Monday, February 1, 2016


I'm sitting in the kitchen with my laptop thinking of all the things still to do tonight. It's been a good day, a bittersweet day, and a thought-provoking day.

This morning I noticed a truck parked on the road. Around 8am a guy finally got out, swinging his machete in a haphazard manner through the path the surveyors had cut late last year. By 8:30am there were more trucks and surveyors in our yard. We now have stakes up marking our property line (two of my crepe myrtles are past the the stakes, but my chicken pen is on the right side!!!), a small bobcat in the field, and a port-a-john on the side of the road in front of our neighbor Arrin's house.  In the last 17 years I've watched this property go from a nicely mowed pasture, to a poorly kept horse corral (where the horses often got out and ruined more than one of our trees), to an overgrown field. We've watched foxes, coyotes, dogs, deer, and my chickens create paths; listened to teenagers party in the weeds on the weekend. And now, in two more days, nature will give way to machines and become a monstrous three story elementary school. I know that change always comes, and there's no reason why it shouldn't happen in my lifetime instead of someone else's. But a small part of me will always ponder what could have been.  And that, we will never know.

After the freezing ice storm from two weekends ago, this was an absolutely beautiful day. I spent most of the morning inside, waiting on a phone call that never came, cleaning light fixtures that I never got around to cleaning last month. (That was my January project...halfway done now!) By afternoon we spent some time outside starting clean-up on the debris from the ice storm. It doesn't look like I got much done, unless you go out in the woods and see the pile I made there. I'll need some extra hands to get some of the branches out of the pond/off the slopes, but that will have to wait until another week. As always, we talked more about how we'd love to clean that area out (as I'm dumping more limbs and brush into it) all the way to the property line. I'm not sure that will ever happen, though. I spent all my free time one summer cleaning one small section, and then DOT came through and took that entire section for road frontage. 

Today we received word that a dear friend found out his cancer has returned. My heart hurts so bad for this family. There's never a convenient time to be sick, but a sickness of this magnitude is truly life-altering.

And life moves on. February is bringing for us another hospital stay, election classes (both me teaching and some me being the student), church activities, and life in general. I am so thankful that the Creator who made the world around us and blesses us with wisdom and friends and salvation is the same God who sustains through every minute of our life. That's truly an amazing thought, especially when everything around us is so fragile.