Friday, July 30, 2021

Friday Funnies


While watching Pirates of the Caribbean, Abigail got grossed out when someone took a bite out a toe. “That’s so gross,” she said. Hannah replied: “Abigail, don’t worry. He spit it out.”

Wednesday, July 28, 2021

People often say to me, "you can't keep your children in a bubble". And I reply, "it's not a bubble, it's a greenhouse." 

A bubble stifles growth and blocks out nutrients. A greenhouse provides an environment for cultivation. 

Children’s hearts need to be “greenhoused” before they’re ready to be transplanted out into the world. We release when their roots are deep and they are mature enough to withstand the storms, not beforehand. 

While they're still under our protection, we take the responsibility for engaging them in learning about different cultures, ideologies and values. They should only know worldly teachings enough that they will be inoculated against them. 

It's neither parenting out of fear or legalism, nor going to the opposite extreme of being too permissive.

No, our kids shouldn't grow up in a bubble. But they shouldn't be left exposed to the harsh outside elements, either. 

The greenhouse of our home has all the right conditions for those young seeds to grow and flourish.

— Called to Mothering 

Tuesday, July 27, 2021

I just finished reading ...


Woah ... what a story. As a mother through adoption, IVF, and natural attempts, this story spoke to me on MANY levels. The story of a daughter who discovers her father is not her biological father .... things have really changed with DNA testing. What do we do when we find out a donation occurred anonymously? This is REALLY something to think about.

Our girls: Abigail (10) and Hannah (7)

That time their room was clean

Introducing Z&Z!

I am not sure why the Lord has decided that our life will be anything but quiet. 

I find it ironic that my BIGGEST fear when we bought this farm was that I'd be lonely all the way out here in Bulls Gap.

I ... am ... never ... lonely.

There are people here. All ... the ... time.

Sometimes I wish I could be a little lonely.

But we've told the Lord that everything we have is HIS and we will listen and do with what he gives us as he asks us.

He has asked us to let Erin and Z&Z stay with us for 6-8 months.

Their Dad is deployed. Because of COVID, they knew very few people where they were living, and as soon as Dad gets back they will be off to a new base.

So Erin and her husband (my John's very oldest and dearest childhood friend) decided: "Let's make the most of this time without our Dad and LIVE on a farm!"

They will be staying in our RV for the foreseeable future, and we couldn't be more excited about it. We feel called to the military community. It will always be a part of us. And to serve our country by supporting one family during this journey brings us GREAT joy.

(In addition, Erin may be the cleaning-est/helpful-est person I've ever met, and her kids are SO DARN NICE! I am especially excited that their oldest daughter is Abigail's age. Oh for her to have a friend her age when she's always surrounded by bigger girls!)

Erin has given me permission to include snapshots she takes on the Blog so that you can see the farm through NEW eyes. I will be showing how non-farm-kids spending half a year on a farm see their life here as they dive right in!

So here it is. Post #1 of Z&Z!

Monday, July 26, 2021


It is my very favorite time of the year ... it is the time that we go to Vermont. 






It is the place where my heart sit downs. Where my soul rests.  

I am so excited to have the opportunity to go with my family to Vermont for our ninth straight summer! This year, my dear friend, Kelsey, will be joining us as well.

The farm, of course, doesn't just STOP.

Mr. Jacob is here. And we have another returning-wwoofer, Ms. MaryAnn here too. In addition, John's parents will be here to help and my nephew Gabe can also help if we need him. Anni and her foster daughter will be living at the farm while we are away. 

In addition, we have some other exciting news to share. A friend of mine (Erin) will be living on the farm with her two children for 6-8 months while her husband is deployed. We are excited about this for many reasons. For one, her children are the age of our kids and it will be good relationships for everyone. In addition, John and I are love to help the military community so to support Erin during this time, means a lot to us.

So as we leave, the farm is as busy as ever.

Life is never boring here.

Sunday, July 25, 2021

Family Fun

John's brother, Matt, came into town with his two daughters (Peyton and Cami) and his wife (Dani). In addition, my nieces (my brother's older daughters) were still in town so it was quite the full house/grandparent's house. 

We didn't take a TON of pictures, but we did take some, and here are our favorites:

Friday, July 23, 2021

Hannah pass out

It wasn't stitches but it was skin glue. Hannah. Cut her finger on the clothespin container. It was a glass jar. It broke. I was out of the house. Kids were building a fort, and Hannah reached into the container and cut her finger pretty good on the broken glass jar. 

Lots of shoulda, woulda and coulda in that little scenario. So much of life is like that. Little things that happen that you don't think are a big deal. Shoulda tossed the jar right away.

But even worse than the cut was that Hannah almost passed out. This was actually encouraging to me, however, because a few months before COVID, Hannah did pass out. We weren't sure why, and I took her to the ER and had some tests run. She was totally fine, and when I told John she had cut her finger about two minutes before the pass out, he said it was probably a "vasovagal" response.

Vasovagal syncope is a condition that leads to fainting in some people. It is also called neurocardiogenic syncope or reflex syncope. It's the most common cause of fainting. It's usually not harmful nor a sign of a more serious problem. Many nerves connect with your heart and blood vessels.

This time Hannah recognized the sensation and said to me: "I feel that funny way I did last time when I fainted." So I had her lay down and put her feet up. Her face was literally as white as a sheet. John was out working on the farm, came in, did some quick skin glue and was back at it.

Time to update my "house call" page for John. These are all the people he has to to stitch or "fix up" since we moved to the farm. I'm gonna start updating it with all the little old people that live around us coming to the far for different ailments.

Today, Mr. Billy's wife, Gay, drove up to ask John about the shingles Billy is still battling. (John diagnosed it about a week ago.) As she was leaving with the cream John gave him, she backed down our driveway and straight over our flowerbeds. 

Sigh ...

Tuesday, July 20, 2021

I feel like ...

... a big ol' hag. A nag. Like my voice could just be on recording and accomplish the same things all day. 

To raise your children RIGHT is NOT easy. People told me it would be harder as they got older and that's what I feel right now FOR SURE.

Little is PHYSICALLY exhausting. But now I am MENTALLY exhausted.

I was a high school teacher. I have never been "into" middle schoolers. And I have three middle schoolers (and one who thinks she is a middle schooler.)





John's schedule is contributing ... he's SO busy due to an overrun ER and an understaffed ER. He's had to take on extra shifts. 

I am also coming to understand more of what PTSD is. Both JB and I are. We are both realizing that COVID has left us with PTSD. When people talk to us about it now, we are left feeling "yucky" after the conversation. We don't want to talk about it at all but know that it is sometimes necessary.

I need a break.

Vermont is coming.

I NEED it.

Sunday, July 18, 2021

We Bought a Farm: Running Line

I could write a million posts in a million ways about "running line." In order to move our sheep from paddock to paddock, we have to prepare the next paddock. This was a particularly muggy day, I was running line by myself, and I had more things to carry up a very steep hill than I had hands. So here's what I did ...


Getting unstuck

Life has a way of getting away from you. With family back in town and a very busy husband/ER, I just haven't been able to keep up on this Blog like I would like to. I'm trying really hard to keep up. Kinda like this deer trying to find a way off the road (we caught this on video driving home the other day.)


My brother and his family were in, my nieces stayed around, and now John's brother (Matt) and his wife and daughters are here. So it's been a bunch of people.

We are excitedly getting ready to head to Vermont next week for our annual vacation. CANNOT WAIT!

Wednesday, July 14, 2021

From yellow to teens

After battling some minor anxiety/depression during the last two months, I can "cautiously" say I think I have found my footing again. 

I have realized that there are three "zones" I can be in. I share this because I imagine it is true for many people. 

Red: A Zone I am rarely in. This is major depression that I have experienced mostly hormonally post-partum and also during my pregnancy with Hannah.

Green: I'm feeling like regular ol' Wendi, and I can do (nearly) anything!

Yellow: I'm struggling a bit and in danger of entering the red zone if I'm not careful.

I haven't been in the Yellow zone in a number of years so I didn't really recognize it when it happened. But John did, and we immediately put some things in place to get me out of the zone. 

I have been very honest that I have been on an anti-depressant, and we upped that med slightly. (I truly feel that it is important we are vocal about these things so that others don't feel alone in this world.) 

In addition to upping my meds, I also started working on resting everyday, saying "no" to some things I normally would have said yes to. Working on going slower and being more intentional. I also made some changes with technology and my time with the Lord that I believe helped. 

My nieces are staying in town with me for two weeks. They are 10 and 12 and such wonderful young girls. I am doing really well parenting six children I do believe.

I have, however, become aware, that I am entering a new ZONE of parenthood: teenagers! 

I always said my kids would never grow up.

But they have. :)

Sunday, July 11, 2021

A visit from my brother and his family

My brother Keith, his wife AD, and their four children recently came for a four-day visit. Keith and the boys departed, but my wonderful nieces are with us for two weeks! How wonderfully fun! Here are some pictures from before AD and Keith and the boys departed:

Waiting the movie "A Week Away"

With Shane and Linda's daughter Emmy

Riddick (5) and Maddox (3) were wrestling with Sidge when they all of a sudden discovered and became fascinated by his braces.