Tuesday, May 31, 2011

An Anniversary Day Out

Our 16th Anniversary was May 27th, Gregg was in Kamloops for the day, but we had booked the next day "off" for just us. The girls and I managed to figure out how to put together a loft bed we had bartered for from another homeschool family.  It was great fun and we worked together and figured it out.  It was fun showing the girls how to lay parts out and look at holes, faded wood parts, etc to see how something would go together.  Then how to look up on the internet instructions from the label that was on the bed.  She slept in it that night and Daddy was IMPRESSED with his girls!  Mission accomplished!
Heavy lifting team work
Finished!  Just needs the desk, etc put in and made cozy

Banner girls made for us

they were so cute, table all set nicely, good thing I brought a frozen pizza home...they forgot about food!

 We watched a movie until a little too late on Friday, but still managed to get into 100 Mile by shortly after 9 am.  Gregg wanted to go to some yard sales, and they usually start around 8-9am.  Some that were advertised were never found...it was like the addresses never existed, so that was amusing.

We did have the camera along, but we didn't take any pictures really...how silly!

Silly goat by 108 greenhouse...liked to climb the bunk bed 
I found a bunch of supplies for Kate's little candle recycling/making business but the biggest score came from one house in the 108.  We almost never stopped at this one, as it was mainly furniture from a staging and selling of a house.  WELL NOW!  What I would have missed!  There in the corner of the garage was a ... can you guess?  A .... quilting frame!   YES, oh yes...I played it very calmly, told my hubby to see if he could get it for $10.  Of course he did!  It is not a roll up fancy frame, but 4 boards to make a rectangle and all the holes drilled out and bolts to insert.  Can't wait to put it to use, just trying to figure out which cabin I can set it up in to quilt!

In this same house I went in to look at the house mainly, as it had just sold and she had been doing some fixing up in it.  As renovators, we are always interested in how they use space.  Noticed a few things that we funny...like a black light switch with a white cover...we did understand though that most people would need an electrician to change that, but it was cute.

Back to my other train of thought~ there was a long narrow rectangle table with 2 leaves in it.  It was incredibly heavy, had a few dings on it, but I was thinking how nicely it would fit in the kitchen space we have and with the bench.  My hubby got looking at it as I whispered my thoughts to him...he offered $30 and we set out to take the legs off and into the van it went!  So happy we had no seats in the van!

New to us table...heavy!  Now we just wish we had our chairs.
By this time it was getting past lunch time, I had brought a salad along and juice/tea, but we were needing to be somewhere.  I started to eat the prepared salad in the van.  Very romantic!

We stopped at a cute little greenhouse in the 108, this is where I took this picture to show the girls!
They were super friendly and we chatted of course.

Off we went to the next stop, my choice, going to look at 3 houses for sale.  Used some of our gift certificate to Tim Horton's...cafe mocha!  yummy!

Now we didn't buy anything, but this is the first step to seeing what is available in different price ranges and it was so fun!  So was finding the mummified grey cat in an old chicken coop. Ha ha.  The drunk Polish man was amusing as well.  The house that smelled strongly of animals was not so much fun.

Then we ended up changing our plans to go to a restaurant and went to someone's house instead.  Gregg has met a German man through work and we were invited to their place on the lake...very wonderful steak, baked potato and corn on the cob meal.  She was a very nice woman as well, and their home was very near to what Gregg and I dream of...at least the furniture!  It was super beautiful antique wardrobes, etc from the 1700's...yes, 1700's...the wood work was amazing.  I appreciated just being around the furnishings.  In Germany he said they are so much cheaper there...and that we should go buy some and rent a container to ship them over. Maybe in some other time, but it is nice to dream!

We visited with strangers, especially liked little Ida from the used furniture place who saw me going through the old patterns.  We exchanged numbers and she was going to see if she still had some patterns and would give them to me.  The world is full of nice people, we just need to be approachable and take note and time for a little conversation.

Our whole day cost under $50 and we spent the whole day touring tour, came home with a table and quilting frame plus odds & ends.  I think we'll always remember this anniversary as a very interesting one.
Oh, and yes, we came home and watched movies until 3 am...just because we could.  Too bad I couldn't sleep past 8 am!  haha

I just love days with hardly any schedule and time with just my hubby!

Monday, May 30, 2011

Baby Robins

On my hubby's little cabin that stores his tools and such, this little robin built a nest on top of a spindle that was leaning against the cabin.

The eggs have hatched and the parents are diligently bringing yummy worms for them to eat.  Much different than the chicks we hatched, these little guys need to grow some feathers!

Trying to get a view without disturbing anything

Another nest makes this skull have a wig!

Mei's "Cookie" is super pretty. Almost 2 mths old

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Raising children


A great post from Mennonite Girls can Cook about raising our children and comparing it to sewing...win win win

Friday, May 27, 2011

Wedding Anniversary

Hard to believe that 16 years ago we were making our lifetime marriage commitment to the world.  

I met a carefree handsome young man in the summer of 1994 while at TMBC.  God orchestrated that I would be called in as a replacement for some girl that got a job in BC (how ironic is that now?) and Gregg was 17 years old and on the prowl for his wife!  Thanks to his best bud, J, for telling him to get his body to camp and do something productive with his summer.  Poor J, Gregg was very productive in one thing...getting the girls attention and finding a wife!  ha ha.

Isn't he adorable?
Wish I had photos here that I could post of our dating days with Gregg in his tattered cut off jeans, work socks and boots with holes.  He was a wonder to behold with his shaggy hair, overshirts and sunglasses.  It was his smile that made me know he was different.  It lit up the room and still does.  I am so proud of my man, he is mine and I am his.  If someone has a photo of us handy, email it to me and I'll post it on here, no matter how embarrassing!  hee hee, I may regret that!

For those who know me, or have read previous blogs, you probably have put together a bit of a timeline of my life.  This part is more interesting to me now, that I am older and wiser (ha).
June 1993 ~ Graduated grade 12 MCI
July 1993 ~ moved (alone) to Wpg to start a 12 month college course
August 1993~ sister killed in car accident.  She was to be married on my 18th b'day.
Sept 1993 ~ roomies moved in, thank GOD!  They must have looked after me, because I don't remember most of that year at all.  I do remember one panic attack that felt like a heart attack when I laughed for real the first time afterwards.  Good ole' Dutch Blitz to get the body going again.
July 1994 ~ Graduated my course somehow and realized being sad and depressed was not going to bring my sister back and I needed to get through somehow.  Asked God to take the pain away and help me through.  He gave me the gift of tongues, though I didn't know that was what it was then.  I just began to pray to God in words I didn't understand.  The pain started to lift and I could see sunlight again.
Gregg with cousin I, July 2010 Love my man's laugh!
July 1994 ~ called to fill in at camp.  Gregg and I were assigned not only to the same table group (2 counselors per table of kids every meal and for games times), but also to work at the "BARNS!"  yikes.  The only time we didn't see each other was night time.  Love took me by surprise.
August 1994 (after camp) had our 1st date at the Buzy Bee Drive Inn in B'vain.  Looked at the damage a tornado had done down the old #3 Hwy.  He brought me Sweet Peas and we drove with the top down in his little red Fiat 2 seater convertible...same vehicle would later leave us stranded going to our honeymoon!
Engagement photo taken outside my Grandma Unrau's house
November 11, 1994 ~ Gregg asked my Dad's permission and blessing to marry his daughter.  Dad said something like " Jolene knows what she wants, and if that is you, fine by us"...just kidding...

May 27, 1995 ~ it was a late spring and we had cherry blossoms for flowers instead of lilacs.  I was ready early (Unger style) and the day went off with 1 hitch ~ ours for life!  How blessed we felt to have found each other so young.  God surely blessed us and Gregg and I are so thankful.  Many had doubts, as they should have with youngun' getting hitched.  With God in it though, it works.

Wedding Photo

Acting very serious 2010
We were just talking about how many discussions we worked through without arguments, how our personalities work so well to be practical yet loving.  I am thankful for a man who recognizes emotions and has brought them out in me as well.  Knowing my background, I hid a lot of myself as a protective measure.  So thankful for friends who stuck by to see the other me.
So thankful for a man who has made me giggle and for memories of him blowing up our air mattress at 3 am because we were waiting to buy a real mattress for 6 months.
So thankful for a man that saved himself for me, and me for him.
Fin Creek Summer 2010
So thankful for a man that cried with me and held me when things didn't go as planned.
So thankful for a man who didn't care if supper didn't turn out right, as long as he could hold me tight!
So thankful for a man who taught me to drive stick shift.
So thankful for a man who doesn't fight dirty, but discusses and comes to solutions and will give and take so effortlessly.
So incredibly thankful for a man who has built my self-esteem for nearly 6,200 days!
So thankful for another family that let us be ourselves and welcomed me in, even if I was foder for many teases from little brothers.  They also introduced me to the Looney Tunes!
So thankful to have someone by my side who thinks like I do, even if others don't understand, we can stand together.
1st house, Sept 17th photo, had Mei right afterward.  Gregg in nursing school.
So thankful my man changed diapers and burped babies and taught me how to breastfeed...hee hee.
So thankful for a man that will watch chick flicks and action movies with me.
So thankful for a man who doesn't have too much of a sense of smell...very handy while watching a movie after I've had milk products!

So thankful for so many good role models in our life ~ everyone in our life can teach us something if we are only open to it!
Gregg's folks showing you can have fun!  39 years!

My folks, holidaying for their 25th 2010

March 20, 2010 Friends wedding goofiness
So thankful to God for a man who is so much more than I could have ever asked for!  He continues to amaze me and amazingly loves me more and more too.
This post is getting very long, as I have nothing but wonderful things to say about my man...now everyone go look for an embarrassing photo!  hee hee
Happy 16th  Anniversary
(and happy birthday Dad and S.R. too)

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Sewing little girls dresses and pinafores ~ Holly Hobbie fun!

    I had the joy to be able to get out some of my old sewing patterns from thrift stores, etc and get creative.  Another wee little niece was born unto my hubby's sister, so the girls and I thought that somewhat matching outfits would be cute.  We think they turned out well.  I did some adapting in length, but that was it.  One pattern was missing the sleeves, etc, so I improvised as I could, but I'm not real comfortable with that.  The biggest problem I have is knowing what size to sew.  Go for a tad larger, then they grow into it at least.  I choose size 2 for the "big sister" who is 2 years old and petite.  Choose Newborn size for the baby who last I heard was 8.5 lbs.

Newborn size, seems large.  Reversible with bloomers
Ruth's corduroy pants, real sheep fleece felted for a tail
 Wanted to use little bunny buttons, but being reversible, they would really poke.  As it is, I think she may need to change the tail as well.  Quilting fabric came in handy.  Girls helped pick out everything.  "Not too pink for Uncle, but pink enough for J"
The other side, green swirls from our girls quilts.  Blanket stitched with embroidery floss around the bunny while we watched Vancouver play some fun hockey!

This was a favorite pattern because it was so easy when I was first learning to sew.  Made it even easier using ribbon for the ties so it can be adjusted.  Either a shirt or a little short dress.  Used antique rick rack for trim, not an itchy lace fan myself.  Sewed the bonnet to match either outfit hopefully.  Girls wanted S to be able to match with her big cousins if they get to play anytime soon.  The bloomers also have an edging of rick rack along with the bonnet brim.

Can you tell I love the look of rick rack?
The Holly Hobbie pattern, basic dress, made some sleeves for it.  Couldn't find a zipper foot...ah, the stress of it all!  ha ha.  Managed just fine and it worked out.
If it is too small for the 2 year old, the newborn will grow into it or her Mommy can chop it up and use it for something really cool and creative.
 Eyelet pinafore.

 Kate thought these little pink hippos were perfect to finish the outfit off, and I'd agree.  Gotta get more creative in my sewing!

Had oh so much fun sewing these!  Can't wait to get sewing more again.

BIG NEWS!  I may be getting a serger!  My dream is to have a serger and Gregg may have to do a little tweeking on it, but I'm sure we can figure it out and get this little room a humming again.  It would have been nice for the eyelet, etc and all the hems!
Finished product, unwashed, but ready to mail away.

Bantam chick update 21 days old

Little bantam chicks bought May 3rd and brown ISO/buff orpington chickshatched May 8th
This is a very white silkie bantam with black beak, skin and 5 toed feet.  Not the usual 4 toes.  Extremely fine feathers, louder cheeping noises, adorable and going to be very pretty.
Same Silkie, pure fluff!

Black/yellow "Oreo" chicks are getting very fuzzy legs!  Can you tell there are feathers growing out of the backs of it's knees?

Some of these look like Falcons or Eagles.  Notice how big they are next to the Silkie on the right.  Their wings look small in comparison to the rest of them.  Other chicks run under them all the time.

More pics of legs.  These little red feeders are also a good judge of how big and small some are.

Most adorable "Tweety Bird", Mei's little chick.  Used to burrow into our hands, but can't quite fit into Mei's anymore.  Wings are bigger than the body.  It is a Japanese breed, shorter legs, delicate and fiesty...likes to play tag and sun itself under the heat lamp.

More fuzzy chicks

This one looks like an Owl with it's puffy cheeks, or someone with their wisdom teeth out!  HA

All these fuzzy legs makes me remember our days in MCI....remember girls?  Nothing some purple or green tights couldn't cover eh???

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

My Bucket List

I had posted previously about my "bucket list" ~ what I'd like to do before I "kick the bucket" and go on to much bigger and better things! Here is a link to that list...

I have now been able to cross off a few more things from that list!  YEAH!  God is an awesome God and I see more and more how He truly likes to see His children smile.  I appreciate everything God has and is doing for me.

Due to the somewhat hectic schedule of the Homeschool conference for a 1st time newbie, our host family and ourselves decided to order in some chinese.  If you know me, you'll notice my sheer delight when I discovered the food came in little boxes!  I have always wanted to have take out chinese in boxes!  Due to our never ordering out, I haven't really had the chance and this was the weekend!  Cross that off the list!

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

My Mommy

Mother's Day always lands on/around my Mom's birthday, so poor Mom only really gets one special day.  Hardly enough to do her justice!
Getting ready to take a photo, inspecting Ruth's "Betsy" the cow...
I finally got the opportunity to take her for lunch when I dropped the girls off at the Interlakes Kids Space wind up.

Ready to go!

Went to "Marcelle's Boulevard" Diner at the Interlakes...always really yummy food.  Mom ordered the "Gravlax" croissant...it is marinated salmon and very good.  I had the wild mushroom soup and a grilled ham and pineapple sandwich. I have got to make that for my girls, it's like Pizza!

Drove around killing time and looking at places for sale.

Then went to the "Country Peddler" for a good while...there's so much stuff to look at that you need a "good while"... ha ha.  This little garden thingy-bob was so cute.

 Happy Birthday to my Mommy dearest!  Mom's caring ways are often over looked and under valued, but we love her tremendously and have learned so much from living on the same yard for almost 3 years now.  There is so much value in learning from someone who has been there, done that and succeeded!   
My Mom has survived and thrived no matter where life has taken her.
She buried a husband at age 31 and raised us 3 adorable children.
 Then she opened her heart to love again when God sent Papa John along.  Together they raised us ever increasingly adorable children in adolescent years.  Then poor Mama buried her daughter and along with her all the hopes and dreams she had for her.
 Can you just imagine?  Expecting a wonderful wedding and instead having a funeral?  My Mom survived and didn't turn bitter but she got even better.  Despite how I know she wanted to hang onto us forever, Mom was able to let us go into God's hands.  Let us make our own mistakes, only giving advice when asked, praying and relaxing that we would find our way.  It takes a special Mom to be able to let her birdies fly away from the nest to make their own.
 We never felt interference, only support.  How blessed I have been to have parents who encourage us and who love our children and reinforce our values to them!
 I believe our family loves deeply because we have lost...we know how to bask in joyful moments as they may be our last.  It has been a joy being the daughter of my Mother and yes, I look like her some and I pray her hospitality and Godly character passes along to me and my own girls!
A side note~ I am so thankful for a Mom, who although she may not fully understand everything about me, let's me be ME!  Her love of the dirt, gardening and cooking for crowds (ha ha) has passed on, but some things about us are very different.  I was remembering last night all the stories of her dressing me up in cute dresses only to find them shoved up the eveastroph or behind a bush and a little underpants-Jo streaking around the yard.  I'm sure I made her scratch her head a few times, but she didn't force me to me anything I was not.  Now I see my own girls doing the same thing and understand just how much my Momma loves me...guess I sure love my babies!