Friday, August 28, 2009

Although the sun refused to shine today it turned out to be one of the best days I've ever had with my hubby! So ya it's been 5 years since I walked down that aisle and publicly agreed to love and cherish one man for the rest of my God given days. 5 YEARS! Okay so that may not seem like a big deal to you but in recent years with divorce rates on the rise and young couples barely surviving the honeymoon I say we're on a roll!

Tradition has it we watch our wedding video, go out to eat at Olive Garden, maybe see a movie, and retire early for bed. Not this year, we decided it was a year to really celebrate how far we've come, how much we've changed, and how much we love each other. So being that James is on the river every single weekend as a river guide in his kayak (that was his early birthday present!) I decided I wanted him to take me kayaking for our anniversary.

Can we just say so awesome! I loved it! A little anxious at times not knowing totally what I was in for but all in all it was great. James says I did a really great job although I think he's just being nice. I did freeze up for a second going through some rapids, I just stopped paddling for a second until I heard James scream "PADDLE!!!" Blink back to reality I was looking five feet in front of me and the only this I saw was a rock and a wave about to take me under. I survived and squealed and laughed all the way through it!

It was by far the best day I've spent with him. The quiet moments of nearly still water just taking in the panoramic views. A few King Fishers and plenty of ducks, and lets not forget the tourist taking pics of us from the banks of Jim Thorpe, that was kinda weird. I have a new respect for James on the river in his kayak. It certainly takes skill and an eye for the river.

Here's to many more years to celebrate and a love that just keeps getting stronger! (and here's one to those who said it'd never last! Now who's laughing!)

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Educating our babies! NEI HO!

(Jocelyn planting trees in the spring)

Tonight I was reminded of the woman I strive to be but seem to fall short of, in my opinion. You know her...the Proverbs 31 woman. She's so freakin' perfect! I sat and read it to Ariana tonight in hopes that in reminding myself of who I wish to be maybe my baby girl will find it a worthy goal of her own someday.
That got me on a whole new chapter to think about, education. One of the greatest gifts we as parents can give our children is the gift of knowledge. If you step back and really try to grasp that whole concept it's a bit overwhelming. It's my responsibility to provide my baby girls with all the know how and skills they need to carry on through life. What if I forget something? What if it's not good enough? Will they survive the constantly changing environment? The questions just go on and on.

(Jocelyn planting her flowers)

My girls will be or should I say ARE second generation home educated kids, what an exciting challenge! From the day each of them came into our lives, the lessons began. Starting with simply seeing and hearing the world around them and learning cause and effect. "If I cry, people respond and provide for me" What an amazing thing, their already figuring out how the world interacts. Jocelyn is well on her way of learning all sorts of new and interesting skills. We're learning our letters, colors, numbers, emotions and reactions, cause and effect, size relations, etc. Everything is a learning experience.

She gets excited about recycling ("wecycling" in her words) even. We started by sorting the trash and she carries the recyclables to their designated bin. She watched the recycling truck arrive and pick up the very items she had placed in the bins and then after a wave and a thank you we took the opportunity to recycle some items of our own into new things. She sat intently watching as I took some Capri Sun pouches and turned them into a purse just for her. Boy was she excited! Now she helps wash them and prepare them for items to sell. What a big girl! Getting her excited about the environment and contributing and doing her part makes me very happy! Shes planted trees and flowers and even picks weeds in the garden!

(Helping Mommy wash) "I'm washin' mommy"
It's those little things in life that make you smile!
Those moments that make you stop and remember why you do what you do.

I'm still doing extensive research on what methods I want to use for their education. Of course how they respond to certain methods will have a bearing on what I choose to do. I have established so far that in some way I want to incorporate a very well rounded ethnic program. I feel in our current and changing world it's extremely important for them to have a complete understanding and respect for people and lifestyles around the world. Our simple start in that direction, Jocelyn learned how to say Hi in Mandarin nei ho(pronounced ni hao). I want to instill in the girls that all people are created equal. Learning the history, skills and languages from other counties I think will be a good start. Emphasising not just what is learned, but how it is learned.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Buzzing BEES

Yikes....been crazy busy and too hot to sit in the corner and update this blog but it must be done! What do I hear everyday in the kitchen? Buzz Buzz... well the sound of busy buzzing lil' honey bees, of course! Recently there was some construction going on up the road from us on an abandoned home. Within 24 hours of construction there was suddenly a swarm of bees outside the kitchen window looking for a place to call home. They managed to find a small hole in the siding that apparently was left from some old wiring or something. After totally freaking out not being sure they were honey bees, I killed one to get a better look. Sure enough they're good old honey bees! We tracked down a "Bee man" named Joe who was able to come over a few days later and survey the situation. Turns out he knew a guy that had built this really cool contraption that acts as a vacuum and sucks the bees "gently" into an enclosed portable hive. After locating a gap between the wall and the ceiling that they had managed to find and use as access to the kitchen, he went to work cleaning out as many as he could. With the hopes of getting the queen as well. Mind you, during the main event I shuffled the girls out of the house and hung out at hubby's cousins until the coast was clear.

Now weeks later after sealing up what we thought was any and all entrances, the remaining guests seemed to have found another tiny way in. So back to sealing up tiny places. It's a shame to loose the queen and the remaining workers but without totally dismantling the wall we can't possible save them. We did save hundreds of them with the vacuum contraption and those have been introduced into a young hive that needed some more workers. It breaks my heart to kill the rest but we're in no position right now to start a kitchen remodel! Bees are becoming scarce in our region and it was surprising to find these. I welcomed the little guys since my garden benefited from the pollinating of the bees. But since they've arrived Jocelyn and Cleo have been stung and we can't go anywhere near that side of the house when the bees are active. I did learn a thing or two about the bees like how they only sting when threatened or they feel their queen is in despair. They one sting once and only use it as a last resort since it is a suicide mission. Once they sting they die. Unlike yellow jackets who will sting continuously and won't die unless you beat them with your shoe!

That blob you see on the side of the house is the large swarm of bees! YIKES!!!

It's been quite the experience, certainly a reminder to seal up those tiny little holes because you never know who might wish to make a home of it!
This one is Jocelyn's first close up look of bees in the portable hive.