Monday, December 30, 2013

Our Thanksgiving and Christmas

I Hope y'all had a good Christmas! We did although it was a different one. We stayed home this Christmas. We did really miss seeing family at Christmas, but we did have a nice day here. I was struck this year with what a blessing family is, I think it came from being far away from dear family, but what a blessing my own little family right here in my home is too. It's more than some people have. I was reminded of this when we made our Christmas Eve cookie deliveries to a couple neighbors. Neighbor #1 is right across the road, so the girls walked them over. They came home and said how sad it was, he was all alone, no Christmas decor, watching tv. His wife and step kids left him a couple years ago and being from England, he has no other family around, so sad and lonely! Neighbors # 2 are an older couple with no kids, they stop in the Summer quite often to check out my garden and get some produce. She was away working night shift, he was at home watching tv in a completely dark house. From what Ive gathered if they have family, they don't see them often, they moved here from Philadelphia. The cookies sure brightened up his face! I couldnt help but wonder how many other of my neighbors that I always wave to, but never met are also alone and sad!?
We also went Christmas caroling with our church. We havent gone for a few years so it was pretty new for the kids. It made quite an impression singing for widows, especially the one who weeped at how lonely she is the year. The kiddos made it a priority to pray for her over the Holidays.
On November 15, Jennifer turned 8! I must confess to being embarrassed to have a picture of her cake that did not turn out the way I envisioned! Its supposed to be a cupcake, but looks more like a bushy flower. But, she liked it so that's what was important!

Birthday gifts are always exciting, especially ones that come in the mail from family afar.

Not only did Jennifer have a date with Daddy at Longhorn, she got to ride with him for the day in his hauling truck!

The girls had a blast being in a Thanksgiving play with our homeschool group

The homeschool group kids

For Thanksgiving again this year, some of David's family came for a couple days. Playing Monopoly seemed to be a favorite pass time, as heated as the games did get! (:

Meeting new baby cousin Carter was fun!

Jennifer had another birthday celebration with Grandma's cake

After our traditional meal at Mi Rancho, there was a chilly game of mini-golf

On Christmas Eve, we left the kiddos open the gifts that came in the mail from family. These are from Summy family

These are from Aunt Lynette. She made the hats, when I found out it took her about 20 hours a hat, I'm almost afraid to let them wear them! The kiddos are looking forward to a second little Christmas when Grandma Heisey's gifts arrive!

I guess you can't tell how excited Trey was about his new shirt, for Christmas, that looks like Grandpa's dog Pepper! (:

There much anticipated treasures

I forgot pictures of cookie decorating, but this was their project/snack they made to take to Christmas Caroling at church

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Photo Shoot and Other Things

Well, I hope this finds each of you doing well, and not stressing too much that the Holiday Season is already coming upon us!!
School is still going well, three more weeks and we are half way finished! I don't have much to say, so I will let the pictures tell you what we have been up to...
September found me doing lots and lots of applesauce, 79 quarts frozen and 28 canned! I did have some willing helpers though (:
Treyton helped by eating the cut apples
I stumbled across some trees nearby that were growing a fruit I never seen before. After research, I learned they were Persimmons. I did more research to decide what to do with them and came across a recipe for Apple Persimmon Butter. It was alot of work. We had to brave the fire ants to steal their much desired fruit and to get two cups of pulp, well that took awhile. The fruit was the size of a golf ball and each one averaged 6 almond sized seeds, so it took awhile to get much of anything...

David and I had a fun/funny date getting to go see the comedian, Mark Lowery.

Treyton about picked my flowers bare by happily bringing me flowers quite often. How could I reprimand him for destroying my poor flowers? Well, I couldn't, so I didn't (:

Rissa was excited to bring me her "New Little Buddy" that she rescued from the death clutches of our cat! (its a lizard)

October brought some exciting job changes for David. He has officially become self-employed, hauling storage buildings. He really enjoys his new work!

When he gets a building that is 14 ft wide he needs an escort who happens to be me! Our first one was a struggle as part of the roof blew off and needed repaired before we could continue on /:

Jennifer doing one of her favorite things, drawing.

My little 'Pilgrims'. It was an art project of Rissa's

Treyton's version of hauling Storage Barns

The next few photos are my attempt of a photo shoot, so enjoy...

Monday, September 16, 2013

Another Year of School Underway

   Okay, I must confess that I suddenly remembered the other day that I have this project called a Blog that I am supposed to put pictures and updates on! Yes, I really did forget. Imagine my embarrassment when I seen that the last pictures on were the trip pics! Well, confession number two: I only had a couple pictures on my camera (something else I forgot I have), but I figured that's better than none at all!! (:
  Why so forgetful? Now here come the excuses; we are in week six of school, I have been canning (something that's new for me to tackle alone), (my cucumbers resurrected themselves and I figured after they worked so hard to do that I may as well do more pickles and relish and even more pickles), salsa and more salsa to can, a little boy who has become a constant bored shadow since everyone else is doing school and the list goes on as I'm sure many of you know what that's like! (:
  School, so far, is the best we have had yet in going smoothly. We had a rough start though, the first week of school we had: 2 bushel peaches, 2 house showings (that didn't result in a sale), Treyton sick the whole time, stage two of my root canal and major job changing decisions for David. But we made it through!
Rissa is in K5 and she loves it. Sitting still was a struggle, but she is doing better and I think we have had only one emotional break-down which is better than I had hoped for (:  She says that penmanship is her favorite subject which is surprising to me as she has to work hard to "get it". 

Jennifer is in 2nd grade. She loves arithmetic, art and science.

Amber is in 4th grade (already) and she likes science, and phonics (even though it's hard for her)

Treyton, wearing his favorite shirt, follows me everywhere I go! Once things aren't so busy, he's anxious to start his school books too. He gave us a scare by throwing up for an entire week. I took him to the doc after a couple days, they said flu, a couple days later we decided this is enough and took him to the children's hospital. They also said flu and to give him a couple more days, which till then he was over it as suddenly as he had started. I wish now I had taken a picture of him, not real "meaty" to begin with, he looked awful with his sunken eyes and very skinny body. Once the throwing up stopped, all he wanted to do was eat and eat and eat some more! I'm still not quite convinced it was the "very contagious" flu they said it was, that none of the rest of us got!? 

The girls had fun cranking tomato juice and more tomato juice.

When the school day is over, I am ready to put it away till the next day, but the kiddos LOVE to drag the stuff back out and play school for the afternoon

Amber was more than excited to rescue a Hummingbird that got stuck in the garage. The poor thing was very worn out from trying to get out of the garage that it didn't fight to get away from her, at first anyway, then it took off.
That's all the pictures I have, sorry. /: I will try harder till next time...

Sunday, August 11, 2013

PA to Arizona to Home Again

I know some of you have been anxious to see our trip pictures! You can imagine the adjustments of getting back to regular life after being away 2.5 weeks. And starting school 2 days after getting home makes those adjustments even more challenging! So, I am finally getting around to sharing some pictures with you!
We did have a great time in Arizona celebrating our tenth wedding anniversary. Thanks again to the very willing grandparents and Aunts who put a lot of effort into babysitting for us! I had 250 pictures, but decided best to not post them all, so here is a few for your enjoyment. If you want to see the rest, well, come visit! (:
We stopped to visit my Grandma Martin on our way to my brothers house.
We had a family reunion with my Dad' s side of the family. My Grandpa and Grandma Heisey.

We spent a couple days and nights with my brother and his family in Lebanon PA. He lives on a chicken farm and they have a few other farm animals. The kids had  a great time with cousins and the animals.

The girls, especially Jennifer, enjoyed sorting and packing eggs. They still pest for us to build a chicken barn! (:

Treyton was glad to get his much anticipated tractor ride!

Amber really loved spending time with her baby cousins

Us 10 years ago

Present day us! (Grand Canyon in background)
Arizona was a unique place! The desert looked different than I thought. It had big rocky looking mounds/mountains jutting out of very flat desert. There was very little green,- grass was seldom seen and there were no tall trees. It got up to around 110* every day.
Our first flight, out of Pittsburgh PA was delayed, so we missed our connecting flight in Memphis. So we took the next flight to Memphis then the round-about way, to Salt Lake City Utah then finally Phoenix. The picture above is coming into Salt Lake.
I did not expect such big cacti!

It was monsoon season in Arizona. The sudden 30* drop in temperature actually made it feel cold.

The first thing we went to do was ride a train through Verde Canyon. It was a rickety old train and the ride was 4 hours, quite a long slow ride!

It had just rained at Grand Canyon, so it was not a good day, at first, to get good pictures. Even still, pictures could never to justice to the vast and amazing view!
We took a scenic by-way around part of the Canyon. It had pull-offs where you walk right up to the edge. It actually made me dizzy and weak to try to look down, so I did the next best thing, laid on my stomach and scooted to the edge and looked down, down...

We did a lot of driving, so I got many scenic pictures. This is a road we were on where we seemed to hang on the side of the cliff!
We went to Yarnell, Arizona where the wildfires were in June, when 19 fire fighters were killed.

The picture doesn't show how blackened the hillside was in the background.
There were many places where there used to be a house. You could still smell the smoke.

Nevada, on the way to Hoover Dam.

The power generators at the Dam. We went down 53 stories in an elevator to underneath the Dam.

From the top. There was a man down there, but he's almost to small to see.

We figured if we were this close, we should at least go see Las Vegas! It was just starting to get lit up. It was actually a dirty place I thought.

I was surprised how excited everyone looked about going to lose a bunch of money! (:

Chapel of the Holy Cross in Sedonna AZ
Inside the Chapel
Sedonna is known for their Red Rocks

A very fancy house in Sedonna

We were surprised by the very green hay fields in the middle of the desert near Tuscon.

Summy cousins. The kids enjoyed spending time with cousins from Honduras, one last time before they headed back.

The kids had fun attending 2 different Vacation Bible Schools

A couple days before we left we had closing on our land.  So, here is where the future Summy home will be.