Learning as we go...

I think I posted before that I recently took on the responsibility of making dinner for the church on Wednesday nights. We feed about 35 kids and 10 adults before bible study. The first week we did a breakfast dinner--biscuits with sausage gravy, bacon, scrambled eggs and banana bread for dessert.
That's a lot of nanas! I made 4 loaves and used apple sauce instead of oil to make it "healthier" and used my duck eggs, (see the pic below) for the first time ever. The bread turned out fantastic and while we only used 2.5 loaves at the dinner, we had no problem getting rid of the rest. GraceAnne took a loaf to school for snack and said only one kid didn't like it and Allan took the rest to work. He said everyone there loved it to. What's great about using duck eggs in cooking is that they have a higher protein content and therefore make baked goods more "fluffy." The bad thing about them is they are incredibly tough to crack, (maybe we have super-healthy ducks resulting in a superior shell quality??) and must be WELL beaten before using.

Count em...4 pans loaded down with 3 lbs of bacon. I ended up cutting the strips in half and everyone got 3 half strips. We had just enough, (PRAISE GOD!), but next time I will make 4 or 5 lbs because everyone wanted more and there just wasn't enough for 2nds.

Here were the very first eggs we got from our girls. Since that day a few weeks ago we average 2-3 eggs daily and we've gotten about 3 dozen. I keep using them in my Wednesday meals. I'm going to have to start giving some away, too.

This week I made meatballs, (can you guess what we used as a binder?? HAHA!), with gravy over egg noodles. We served salad and bacon green beans with them. There were 105 meatballs!
And I'm growing ever larger at 26 weeks! Okay, we're a bit late in posting...I'll be 27 weeks on Tuesday, but take what you can get. This pregnancy is going so quickly I hardly remember to take pictures! We've had 2 sessions out of 5 of our hypnobirthing class and like it so far. I have some hurdles to overcome having to do with not being able to fully relax, (i.e. trust issues stemming from abuse), but our instructor is fabulous and since we're the only couple in the class she really takes time with us and is committed to helping us overcome our obstacles. Allan says he thinks this baby will be the one to bring calm to our household. That would be fabulous. I'm really trying hard to learn to calm down and not flip out. I told him before we even started this--if I can birth this baby without fear, (nevermind without pain!), I will be ecstatic and he will HAVE to get fixed because I'll be trying to have another one. I'm really looking forward to an awesome birth experience, (again!), despite my previous nervousness. I so look forward to being the mother of a son in addition to my beautifully precious little girls.
Hope ya'll are doing great. Big old Howdy from Texas...where it's FINALLY decided to cool off some and rain down on us. Here's hoping it sticks around! Love and miss you all :)


If you build it, they will come...in flocks!

Remember MY ducks? Those 3 pretty little things?
Remember THEIR pond that we made for them out of a kiddie pool from WalMart?
Weeeeell, today the neighbor knocked on the door and said, "you only have THREE ducks, right?" ummm..yes. "are you sure?" So he leads me over to his yard to take a peek at the animals that came from MY yard just minutes before.

Can you see those itty bitty graceful things? They are called Whistling Ducks. They don't sound AT ALL like my ducks yelling "WAHNCK" but more like some exotic tropical species. But no...turns out they are native to *somewhere* around here...just not exactly *here.* They do fly...the dad flew away while we were chasing the babies back into my yard. He stood in the trees calling to them.
Mom, Dad and can you count them? TEN BABIES. They are adorable and can't be anymore than 2 days old. My guess is they came for the pond, but I have no idea where they've been for the last month and a half, (it would take at least 7 days to lay a clutch that size and then about 24-28 to incubate). We've not heard those calls.
They've been pacing my fence line for the last hour while I submit them to torture with my camera. Whiskers, Speckles and Sprinkles are NOT amused and have been very loud about thier discontent. Animal control should be here within an hour and they will trap them and take them to the lake to release them. Allan told me to just open the gate and let them wander away. I think he must know of my secret desire to keep them here with me. ALL THOSE BABIES! SO SWEET!


Violet's First Day of School

Today was Miss Violet's first day of Children's Day Out. She was completely unsuspecting, but seemed to sense my and GraceAnne's excitement. She will go on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 8:15a-2:00pm. I'm hoping to keep up with the house and nap while she's gone.
Oh so cute in her first day outfit!

She got to enjoy a blueberry muffin for breakfast. And a sippy cup full of soymilk, and a half a strawberry yogurt and a bunch of my cereal...this child is an eater!

She thought this was hysterical. She has the most infectious laugh!
How she rode on the way to drop off GraceAnne. Since GraceAnne has to be to school at 7:30, we had quite a bit of time before Vi could go to school, so we stopped by the park on the way there.
She slid a few times and ran around a bit and then she got on the swing. Since it was EARLY and mommy is TIRED and didn't want her to get filthy, we left and STILL had to waste 20 minutes before we went to school.
Her asthma has been giving her all kinds of grief lately, so that's why she looks so tired. Poor baby! I hope she's having a great first day, she should be napping right about now.

She giggled and got REALLY excited when we walked up to the building. When we went to meet the teacher night last week she stayed in the room and played with all the baby dolls and other fun toys and all the BOYS! She is one of 2 girls in a class of 9. I told the teacher that she will run circles around those boys, though!

Poor picture quality, but this is what she was doing when I left. She was rocking it so furiously that it was moving all over the floor.

So what is Mommy doing with a day off? What is a day off!? I am preparing for my very first Wednesday night supper at the church. Stay tuned for a post about all of that. Then tonight Allan and I have our first hypnobirth class. I have the very distinct feeling I'm passing out as soon as I hit my pillow tonight and there will be LOTS of snuggle time for poor Miss Violet, who hates to be away from her momma.

What a big girl!