Tuesday, May 31, 2011


I should be knighted. I'm still living in this house. I have not moved to Ireland...or Bermuda which I hear shares the same happy snake-free status as Ireland.

I've also been back into the laundry room. Twice.

Once my husband rolled his eyes and went with me.

The second time I had protection from my six-year-old. It's only fair. I was washing his soccer uniform.

One of the intruders pooped on my canning shelves. Excuse me while I puke.

Davis was fine...and laughed at me. Obviously untraumatized by the event.

I wish I was.

Sunday, May 29, 2011

We're Moving to Ireland

We're putting our house up for sale and moving to Ireland.


Snakes! I hate, detest, abhor, and any other word or phrase that you can think of that pertains to utter terror. We've seen a number outside this spring. Ugh, ugh and ugh again! I hate them. One was big enough I just heaved the blade of the spade his directions as hard as I could and ran.

I don't think I got him.

He came to haunt me.

I found him. In my house. After church. He brought his spouse with him.

He slid back into the laundry room where his spouse remained.

This is not a problem.

I never liked doing laundry anyway and I hear that Ireland is lovely.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

At Our House

It's only Tuesday and already an exciting week:

Megan spilled grapenuts in the milk pitcher. That takes talent.

I cleaned the microwave spotlessly (The rarity of that event makes this worth noting on its own.) Thoughtfully I covered the next bowl of potato soup with a napkin. (Again, a rare event worthy of record. ) The napkin fell into the soup and vesuvian-like soup and napkin chunks spewed all over my temporarily immaculate microwave. I decided to forgo future efforts at microwave maintenance.

A cow died in the trees on the ridge immediately behind the house. It is not reachable with backhoe, tractor, or skidloader. It is rank. We have a new theme song:

Jesus loves me when I smell
All the stink where we do dwell.
He can make that dead cow rot
Or we'll cook it in a pot.

Yes, we'll make soup
It looks like goop
We need a dupe
. . . . .

Sorry, that's where my talents as a lyricist gave out. I was stumped for a suitable finale. For some reason my kids thought it was hilarious...my husband not so much. I'm pretty sure he thinks I should take my talents on the road....and leave them there.

Jamison's cow had a heifer calf last night. His herd just doubled. He decided to name her Crystal "...if she's a beauty."

What do you think?

He named her Crystal.

There were four little darlings in the pen. Three of them are heifer calves. Kaitlyn likes them too. :)
Megan and Davis rode with Kenton in the planter this afternoon and evening. I can't figure out if they're just after his lunch and ice tea or if they're trying to get out of work at home.

This is Kenton's current home away from home. (I must be going through a theme song phase. Bear with me, please. This situation just demands one.) How about "On the Road Again" only for corn planting farmers we'd have to change that to " On the Row Again."

Yesterday Jamison informed me that he and Davis are going to be farmers when they grow up...unless God wants them to do something else. Well, actually, Davis is going to farm and Jamison is going to use his helicopter to take all the extra food to people who need it.

HUGE thanks to my Aunt Helen for putting potentially scary news into perspective. I will sleep tonight.

In fact, I will lay me down in peace and sleep. Good night.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Kaitlyn Ying

Kaitlyn is a lot of fun. She brings a lot of joy into our lives everyday as most three-year-olds do. Of course, along with that fun she brings a ton of work. She loves "to help." She watches everything and hates being left out...with the sole exception of picking up toys. Much of the time her contributions are helpful like emptying the dishwasher. The rest of the time...oh, my!

For example, she knows that "some" clothes go back into the drawers. To cover all the bases she puts everything back into the drawers....countless outfit changes, dirty underwear, her sister's clothes, and the occasional nighttime wet pull-up. Oh, joy! Naturally I'm not organized enough to check things out everyday so things are pretty ripe by the time I put away a load of clean clothes.

The highlight of her life is Wednesday morning nursery school and Sunday school. She asks just about everyday if it's time for one or the other. She has gone through a bit of an insecure streak lately. She desperately wants to go, hounds me to get out the door, and then wants ME to stay when she arrives. No go! Mean, old mom makes her choose to stay alone or leave with me. Until today she's always chosen to stay. She went to Dad's Sunday school class today. Deep disappointment resulted in many sobs during church when she realized she'd missed her opportunity. At bedtime tonight she said, "Yingying go to Sunday school. I a big girl!" I have a feeling her desire to go is going to beat her insecurity. And yes, sometimes she's still Yingying.

Firefighter? Flame of genius? Facing the wrath of mom?
No, celebrating Pentecost.

Kaitlyn is continuing to bond with Kenton. She's the first kid I've had that was pretty much of a mama's girl. The other kids all "got it" that dad is the coolest. It hurts my heart a little to see her occasionally reject him. I've loved seeing that several times lately she's dumped me for dad...even when it's because she knows the big, old marshmallow will give her what she wants. Secure attachment at this point is worth being manipulated for. Miss Yingying loves cheese. That whole Asian children are lactose intolerant thing does not apply in this household. (Good thing since we're dairy farmers, eh?) After several days of being pretty miserable with a cold and fever she started to feel better and was chilling out with a cheese stick.

Looks pretty comfy, doesn't she?

Milk dud report: The weather has been pretty atrocious for planting. I think we got 3.5 inches of rain this past week. Ugh! Kenton finally planted some more corn on Saturday. Some hose broke around 8:30 Saturday night when he had 1.5 acres yet to finish at Luke's. Mr. Glass-is-half-full was a little frustrated but relieved that it hadn't happened that morning. Today was another beautiful day but they're calling for a chance of thunderstorms all week. He mentioned being a little tempted to plant today. He also chuckled and admitted that it was probably his desperate need for a nap rather than his personal beliefs that kept him out of the fields. :P He has 120 of the 350 acres of corn planted that he hopes to get done. I don't think he's finished planting the beans (soy) and it will soon be time for hay. Hopefully he can keep busy. :)

Tuesday, May 17, 2011


That’s not a typo that’s how I feel after two days of devoting myself to the condition of my kids’ rooms. I’ve also completed #1 on my Top Ten Most Hated Jobs of Momhood - Switching out the kids’ clothes for the season. Double Ugh!

As you know, we’ve completed our recent remodeling. Of course, we didn’t quite finish that job before we jumped off the cliff of adoption paperwork while moving back into our house from the in-laws. To say that the upstairs looked like Goodwill blew up after being hit by a cyclone is not exaggerating. And in addition to the rest of the chaos, my kids all chose this time to outgrow almost everything, especially their shoes.

This just meant a trip to the Upstairs Mall since I’ve been blessed with hand-me-downs. At some point before four kids I used to be semi-organized and kept all those blessings in totes organized by sex and size....and believe it or not, the contents used to even MATCH THE LABELS. Truly it was a thing of beauty...but (unfortunately) not a joy forever. Those were the days, my friend. But...somewhere along the way the system crashed. I now find those labels more of a possibility than an actuality. A rubber room looks pretty tempting when I discover the size seven jeans that I searched for in vain last fall in a tote of size eights. Plus I have little helpers that get excited by the new Scooby Doo t-shirt they spot somewhere in a pile and pretty soon those carefully sorted and organized piles have toppled, chaos ensues, and mom is having to be talked down off the ledge.

Since ALL the paperwork on our end is done for the homestudy(dossier yet to come) I could no longer dodge the disaster zone of the upstairs. I started in Davis’s room. Now I do regularly have my kids clean their rooms, almost daily in fact. I discovered that Davis’s idea of cleaning consists of putting out of sight whatever is out in the open. Not where things belong, mind you, but out of sight. This means that every nook and cranny of his room held a handful of: legos, duplos, trash, change, mini-tractors, crayons, plastic animals, etc. His toy box held books and dirty laundry. Do you know how long it takes to sort out handfuls of whatnot from 236 crevices in a kid’s room? Even his mega-watt smile dimmed when I made him help me with that tornado zone.

Jamison is a collector. His room wasn’t too bad....except for all the collections: rocks(otherwise known as parking lot gravel), the cardboard corners from the kitchen cabinet delivery (?!?), twenty-four 6x6 green foam pieces (six for each kid to make boats out of this summer), kleenex boxes, and crayons and legos. Our marriage may start to suffer if Kenton doesn’t stop GIVING the kids all the flotsam they want. Although he refused, much to their dismay, to let them take anything off the truckload that sold for scrap the other day.

The girls’ room is mostly neat. They didn’t get it from me. I have this sneaking hunch that their teenage years will be filled with complaints about my housekeeping inabilities. However, they are a couple of packrats. Oh, my! We could open our own Goodwill with the number of purses, stuffed animals, dolls, and dress-ups that they have.

All those odds-n-ends had to go somewhere....

the black hole that is our bedroom. I'm heading for bed now. If you don't hear from us you know where to send the search party.

Saturday, May 14, 2011


Jamison and Megan: Mom, you know that kid named Plankton we were playing soccer with?
Mom: Guys, his name is NOT Plankton! It's Peyton!

Ahhhh, soccer season! That time of the year when parents spend time and energy to sit in the cold, wind, and rain watching their kids kick a ball. Okay, I spend more time chatting than I do watching the game.

And because I'm ultra-cheap sometimes....I won't spend money on sports pictures. I'd rather just take my own. Granted, the quality is not as good. :P

I was able to get Megan bumped up to Jamison's team which saves me tons of extra running...and since the U-10 field is bigger gives her tons of extra running. :) I think they are really enjoying it. Both of them have friends from church on their team and they have a great coach.
I don't have an individual picture of Davis because he rubbed his filthy soccer ball on his brand new shirt minutes before I took his picture. I was somewhat torqued!
He's loving his first round of soccer. After his first game he informed me that he wants to play next year. That's planning ahead. He also has a terrific coach.

I never pictured myself as a parent willing to run for sports. Having kids sure changes things.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011


After correcting my nine-year-old son regularly since he's been old enough to say, "Me and Megan" he's finally starting to say "Megan and I" !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Watch out for flying pigs!

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Megan's Birthday

Megan had a birthday. Her birdbrain mother goofed and scheduled a physical for her and her sister the same day.
She was a good sport. Between Kenton hitting the field work hard and rushing out the door for a physical her "birthday" was pretty quick.
I think the two highlights from this past year would be having a sister (both the bane and joy of her existence) and gymnastics.

Friday, May 6, 2011

Growing Time

Yep, if you haven't figured it out already, we are hoping to adopt again. We're just starting the process so we have a long wait ahead of us, maybe around a year. We're hoping to go back to China and we'd like to keep our birth order intact and we're split as to whether boy or girl...so we're saying either and recognizing that it will probably be a boy.

Milk dud report: we've finally had some dry weather. Kenton planted 15 acres of oats and has started planting soybeans.

We finished school for the year yesterday. Previous experience has taught me that the May farming rush and school don't work well together. There are too many interruptions. Plus the weather is nice and the season of cooperation between teacher and pupils is OVER.

Much as I love Northern Minnesota, I think this is one of the most beautiful places to live. It was a beautiful day yesterday. The kids enjoyed the novelty of being outside on an old mattress and spitting sunflower seeds shells into the grass.

Summer vacation has officially begun. We have lots planned: Cousins here for July, church conference, choral camp for Jamison and Megan, a trip to Minnesota and not to mention the routine of gardening, yard work, canning, and playing catch up after a crazy school year.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Can You Guess?

I am a lousy person for keeping happy secrets. So....

Can you guess what the big news is at our house if I tell you that we are busy collecting:
  • Birth certificates
  • Marriage certificate
  • Physicals
  • Home sanitation inspection
  • Home fire safety inspection
  • Reference letters
  • Employment letter
  • Financial statements
  • Background checks
  • Child abuse/neglect clearances
  • Child support clearances
  • Driving Records
  • Police clearance
  • Guardianship designation
  • Photos
  • Passport photos
Etc ad nauseum...Sounds like an environmental hazard, eh?
Wanna guess?

Monday, May 2, 2011

Teeth, Bambi, Eggs, and Lego Creations

Davis lost his first tooth last week. He was complaining about how his tooth hurt and I noticed that the other one was IN at a 45 degree angle behind it! Ugh! As soon as it was out, another tooth decided it wanted to sleep in the middle of the gum bed. How's this for a snaggle-tooth look?

The next day tooth number two came out. Why is that my kids always think that empty tooth spots must be filled with a tongue in pictures?
Kaitlyn is feeling left out. She insists that her teeth are wiggling and ready to come out too.
Bambi + long grass + lime spreader = not a good combination. Bambi sustained an injury. Kaitlyn kept saying that Bambi needed his mommy as the poor thing bleated and tried to drag himself away. I thought I saved myself the need to explain the facts of life(and death) by saying that the DNR was coming to get Bambi. Of course, Jamison had to ask WHAT they were going to do to him...in front of the others! Boy, the older they get the bigger pain-in-the-necks they can be. They were all set to make him their new pet, feed him with a baby bottle, keep him under the porch, etc.
Kenton found this nest up in the haymow.
I have a love-hate relationship with legos. I consider them a mandatory part of childhood. I'm stunned that they don't appear on the list of necessary equipment for childhood in What to Expect When You're Expecting. Surely every child must learn to survive his/her
parents' wrath when they've stepped on the vile things. Surely to win a mother badge one must squat, lean over, and pick up legos in every corner of every room in the house multiple times whilst vacuuming!
those stupid bits of plastic crafted to send pain rushing through every nerve of the body from pierced foot to brain in nanoseconds entertain my children almost every day! As much as I ENDURE the resulting mess, I love the creativity I see because of them. I can probably recreate a good portion of my boys' lives just in pictures of lego projects.

Playdough on the other hand...I think mothers who let their children play with playdough regularly should be put on the short list for sainthood. If you wisely clean up immediately afterward(you know, instead of letting the bits and pieces get tracked all over your house), then you should just be raptured to the pearly gates.
I would not be among you.

Milk dud report: Water, water everywhere and lots to drink. Our new theme song should be Rain, rain go away, come again some other month. We're at least a week behind last year. Nothing has been planted this year yet. Kenton might do more no-till than he originally planned. Today he spread lime. Carl plowed the Beitzel farm the end of last week. You know that you've been on the farm a long time when a plowed field looks beautiful. :P