Monday, October 12, 2009

Happy Homemaker...i'm kind of boring today


The weather in my neck of the woods: Rainy...AGAIN...
One of my simple pleasures: Carving Pumpkins...tonight!
On my bedside table: Becoming the Woman God wants me to be
On my TV:
On the menu for tonight: A new chicken stew in the crock pot
On my To Do List: clean house, weed flowerbeds, till garden, clean duck barn and pools etc
New Recipe I tried last week:
In the craft basket: Nothing right now
Looking forward to: SUNSHINE
Homemaking Tip for this week: Use antibacterial wipes to keep the bathroom fresh b/t cleaning
Favorite Blog Post of the week (mine or other): A new blog "An elephant in the Room" I started to follow... I can relate
Favorite photo from last week:
Lesson learned the past few days: Chin up and keep going
On my Prayer List: Tedd, Amos (been sick), our country, family, friends etc.
Devotionals, Scripture Reading, Key Verses:

Monday, September 28, 2009

Happy Homemaker Monday!


The weather in my neck of the woods: Chilly and windy...starting to feel like fall, and I LOVE it
One of my simple pleasures: Gathering eggs
On my bedside table: "Becoming the woman God wants me to be" (a proverbs 31 ministry book...great so far!)
On my TV: Nada, no tengo
On the menu for tonight: Chili
On my To Do List: Groceries, Launry, Walk, house cleaning, Get chicken feed, pay bills, etc. etc.
New Recipe I tried last week: Mexican Meatloaf
In the craft basket: Stockings
Looking forward to: Ok wierd i know...but Janelle's Pampered Chef Party lol
Homemaking Tip for this week: Buy a food scale... i finally got one and its amazing! again... i know i'm odd
Favorite Blog Post of the week (mine or other):
Favorite photo from last week:
Lesson learned the past few days/weeks: Be choosey about who you decide to spend your time around
On my Prayer List: Aaron's mother, Husband, Family, Friends, Country, self control
Devotionals, Scripture Reading, Key Verses: 1 Timothy 6:11- " But you, man of God, flee from all this, and pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, endurance and gentleness. Fight the Good fight of faith. Take hold of eternal life..."..Amazing!

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

House Purging!

I am starting the process of purging things from my home. I have said before that every single thing you bring into your house takes up your time. SO... I will be posting things I would like to get rid of. Some of them I will ask a few dollars for, others I will be giving them away to the first one who wants it. Please ask around as I need to get rid of this stuff!


The first is silver wedding bells. Know anyone getting married soon? There are at least 130 of them. They are very cute but have been sitting in a box for almost 2 years. I would love to get $20 out of them but its definately OBO.

Heres a very fuzzy pic:
There will be better (and much larger) items to come!

Monday, August 31, 2009

Great Lecture

This week Tedd and I are in Kansas City, Missouri on "business". I have to have continuing education for my job as an R.V.T. and to do that I decided to attend the CVC conference this year. Anyway, I finished the third and final day of seminars today and I learned A LOT of new information. I know that no one who blogs (that I know of at least lol) is not nearly as interested in animals as I am, but I wanted to write a little blog blurb about a specific 2-hour lecture that I found sad but facinating.
The lecture was given by Dr. Lila Miller who works for the ASPCA. Her entire lecture was on "When the Bond Breaks: Relinquishment, Hoarding and Abuse"
I think you'll be astonished at some of these facts...
She started the lecture by telling a few facts about the Opposite end of the spectrum...the good things.
She said that 63% of U.S. households own a pet. The estimated amount of money that was spent on pet food, toys, and veterinary care in 2006 was 38.5 BILLION dollars. And that was in 2006! Crazy huh?

She also shared some scary facts with us:
1.Most pets who are relinquished (given up), euthanized for no "good" reason, or are abused or neglected is because HUMANS have inaccurate and inappropriate expectations of their pet's medical and behavioral needs, and their role and responsibility in providing for these needs.
2. Animals who have been neutuered or have been to the vet for medical care are less likely to be relinquished. Its proven that the majority of relinquished pets, or pets that have been not taken care of come from homes with less education, less income, apartment dwellers, parents and people who have had the animal for less than a year.
3. People abuse animals to control family members, to instill fear in other people or animals, to shock people or gain attention, for revenge, or to displace hostility.
4. Many people believe that animal abuse is something that children do and will "grow out of". But in a study done over 10 years, 62% of children who abused animals still did TEN years later...eeek
5. A large percentage of people who commit violent crimes against animals also commit violent crimes agains HUMANS


I could go on and on...but its scary! lol I know this is a soapbox of mine but I encourage you all to think of things carefully. First of all God put every single animal on this earth. I truly believe that we should respect his creation. You don't have to have animals or spoil them. In fact MOST of us in the veterinary field would rather people NOT get animals who are not willing to take care of their basic needs. But if someone does get them, they should take care of them. It IS an expense to take care of them properly. This is a cost that should be researched BEFORE getting them. They are not stuffed animals or play things. They are living, breathing creatures who have needs and who feel pain.

What are these people teaching their children? That its ok to get an animal but then when you "can't" take care of it anymore you can just relinquish it or euthanize it? Don't get me wrong I think that humane euthanasia has its place. But I also believe that in the very least, if you decide that you are going to give up responsibility (because thats what it is) for a living thing, you should at least have the decency to drop it off at an animal shelter to give it a chance...or find it a good loving home.

This is all competely unbelievable to me that these people are not only doing this to these animals but then also raising their families to think that its okay.

First Friend Making Monday

"Friend Makin' Monday"
-I couldn't get the pic to load!!! Anyhow...


1. Do you cook every night? No, there are only two of us so I meal plan every week and make usually about 4-5 homecooked meals a week and the rest of the time we eat leftovers. But I guess you could say almost lol

2. What kind of laundry soap do you use? Purex, then line dry...mmm I love line dried clothes

3. Do you do laundry everyday or loads at a time? on my days off from work I do most of the laundrey (usually 4-5 loads) but if we need clothes during the week...some weeks its a load a day

4. How often do you eat out? we try not to, but its still more often than we should. Usually its just fast food but probably once a week

5. Where do you usually eat out? Usually fast food, but our fave is OLIVE GARDEN...yum

6. Favorite Retail store? Lately, its been wal-mart...sad i know

7. Favorite drink? Water and Diet Coke

8. Do you take vitamins? I should but i dont

9. What % of the household chores do you do? 80-90%...but the sickening part of it is that I
LIKE doing these things. I really like doing laundrey especially

10. Do your kids do chores? Well I don't have kids...BUT animals are like our children in our family and I am trying to teach Amos to put his toys back in his toy basket... does that count? lol

11. Do you attend church? Yep

12. Do you use a housework schedule? Yes I do, i have a three ring binder with the weekly and monthly household tasks that need done. They get checked off and dated when they are. And I also keep lists almost daily.

13.Do you keep a working budget? Yes but we're currently trying to do some work on that since Tedd is still unemployed

14. What do you do at night as a family? Well we don't have TV so its usually work inside or out until its dark and then we play a lot of board games or read. Tedd LOVES to read. Oh and we play with the animals.

15. How do you prepare for the week? Meal Plan, Grocery shop, make lists, look at my planner, prep bills and get them ready to send out, finish laundrey for monday

16. What does your morning look like? Well if I'm working that day its getting up at 5AM. Feeding and caring for all of the animals, taking a shower and getting myself ready, packing my lunch, eating breakfast, usually tidying up the house and leaving by 6:30 or before. I get to work at 7:30am and usually i don't get home until 7:00pm or later that evening.
If its a day off, I still don't sleep past 6:30...too much to do

17. What time do you get up? usually 5Am sometimes 6 or 6:30

18. What time do you go to bed? umm about 10-10:30 hopefully...i'd love to say 9:30

19. How do you manage all the paperwork that floods you house? Every day when we get the mail, it gets sorted into either the trash or the decorative mail bins hanging by the desk. Two to three times weekly that gets filed (usually not much is left since most mail is junk). The sorted mail goes into file folders such as "car insurance", "cell phone" and if its a bill that needs paid it goes into the "bills pending"folder. Then ONCE weekly i go thru the bills pending folder and pay the bills.

20. How do you keep your house organized? Well first of all, i am NOT a packrat. I get rid of almost everything I will not need. Remember this...EVERY SINGLE item you have, requires your time. You have to take care of it and clean around it and maintain it. I'm all about simplicity. The less "junk" you have the less you have to clutter things up with. Before you bring anything into you're home (even junk mail) you need to decide if its worth your time. Personally I'd rather spend it outside with my family and animals.
But lists, and having a plan of action...and staying ON TASK keeps things going pretty well around our place.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Happy Homemaker Monday


The weather in my neck of the woods: The sun is coming up over the trees, its about 70 deg. right now...and beatiful
One of my simple pleasures: taking pictures
On my bedside table: same as last week
On my TV: Nothing
On the menu for tonight: Oven Fried Chicken, potatoes from the garden, green beans
On my To Do List: Clean out the barn
New Recipe I tried last week: 3 of them
In the craft basket: making a chalkboard decoration of of an old barn window
Looking forward to: starting exercising this week :)
Homemaking Tip for this week: Write in your cookbooks!!! I try new recipes VERY often. And every time i do I write if we liked it, loved it, or hated it. I also write notes to myself about what we could add or do without. When i go through many of my cookbooks i already know which ones are hits :)
Favorite Blog Post of the week (mine or other):
Favorite photo from last week: :( i didn't take many last week
Lesson learned the past few days: Prayer works miraculous wonders
On my Prayer List:Devotionals, Scripture Reading, Key Verses: 1 Thessalonians 4: 11-12
"Make it your ambition to lead a quiet life, to mind your own business and to work with your hands, just as we told you, so that your daily life may win the respect of outsiders and so that you will not be dependent on anybody.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Ok...the recipes arrive!

I don't know about you all but my favorite recipes are the EASY ones. On the days that I work, I work long hours so I need quick recipes, or ones that I can make ahead of time. Here is a dessert recipe that I took to the Gaerte Christmas in July. The recipe comes from "Gooseberry Patch"...my all time favorite cookbooks (nope not being paid to say that lol). Oh another fun fact...in the book it says that the recipe was contributed by a woman in Avilla IN...cool huh?!

Cookies and Cream Dessert

20 oz pkg choc. sandwich cookies, crushed
1/4 c margarine melted
2- 8 oz. pkgs crm cheese, softened
2- 8 oz containers frozen whipped topping, thawed and divided
2- 4oz pkgs instant chocolate pudding mix

Instructions: Mix cookie crumbs with margarine; press into the bottom of an ungreased 13x9 baking pan. Combine cream cheese with ONE container of whipped topping; spread over cookie crust. Prepare pudding according to package directions; layer on top of cream cheese mixture. Top with remaining whipped topping; refrigerate until firm. Makes 15 servings.

A few tips from Jess :) -- I let my pudding set up for about 10 minutes in the refrigerator before layering on the cream cheese layer. If I'm going to take this dessert somewhere I will wait until I get there to put the 2nd tub of whipped topping on...this recipe is made for a 13x9 pan but it will be VERY full. If you put your topping on, you WON"T be able to put a lid on to transport it.

Hope you all enjoy!

I'll post the other recipe maybe later today or tomorrow (shannon:))

Monday, August 3, 2009

Happy Homemaker Monday

So I decided to do this even though I work outside our home, I still love being a homemaker:)



















The weather in my neck of the woods: Cloudy and 80's today, with a nice breeze






One of my simple pleasures: Taking my time hanging laundry on the clothesline :)






On my bedside table: "Simple Life" by Wanda Brunstetter






On my TV: Don't have one






On the menu for tonight: Chicken and Sausage Paella






On my To Do List: Paint Back Porch, Buy or Make curtains for Back Porch, Hang shelf






New Recipe I tried last week: Penne Pasta Ham









In the craft basket: Painting signs for around the minifarm, and painting a shelf that Tedd made me :)






Looking forward to: a good nights sleep :)









Homemaking Tip for this week: Instead of going through the hassle (and the time) of planning a garage sale, take all of your unwanted goods to your local auction house. You don't have to deal with ANY of the hassle and in a few weeks you'll get a nice little surprise check in the mail. Its great!









Favorite Blog Post of the week (mine or other):









Favorite photo from last week:






Lesson learned the past few days:
Everyone is different...instead of trying to change it, just accept it:)








On my Prayer List: Uncle Jerry (back in the hospital), my sis and new baby, Janeen and baby Caiden at Riley, Tedd, family and friends









Devotionals, Scripture Reading, Key Verses: "Let your light so shine before Men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in Heaven" Matthew 5:16

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Zoo Trip!
























I had this past Friday off, so Tedd and I decided to go to the zoo. We took Caleb (nephew) and Megan (Tedds sister) because they both like animals. We had a lot of fun! Here are a few pics with my fuzzy camera ( i think its time for a new one!)
This first pic is of Cubby on his way to the zoo. I'd say he was pretty excited!








Below is Megan...sideays lol.





Above: Tedd and Cubby under and Elephant!







Cubby in the train, love the face buddy!









Megan next to the huge elephant
















Our next stop...the rainforest!









This is my hand and Caleb's hand inside the handprint of the orangatangs!
They can live to be 65 years old...crazy!





Caleb's foot...he's got a few years to go until he can fill out that footprint lol
Caleb sitting on a monkey lol
The sky ride was a lot of fun but VERY high. I think I was the only one that was scared.
We had so much fun! Thanks Megan and Caleb for the great day!

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Whoops..how time flies!

Ok so I'll be the first to admit, I REALLY stink at this blogging thing! haha.
Anyway its been a little over a month and SO much has happened. Where do I begin? How about I'll hit some highlights...Some are sad, some are happy and some are funny!

-Uncle Jerry is recovering at HOME and is doing well, trying to regain strength
- AEP came and told us they we're cutting down all of our trees in our front yard...VERY sad :(
-We went to another swap meet (and took my parents along!) but we got rained out before I was able to buy any more critters...to Tedd's delight :)..we had fun anyway
- We have a fox in our barn...we're trying to figure out how to catch him...we now know the REAL meaning of "fox in the henhouse"
-We're still training Amos in Agility and he's becoming more and more amazing every week
-The carpenter strike is OVER :) YAAAAAAAay! But now Tedd is laid off :(
- I got sick for about a week with the stomach flu...then Tedd got it this week, but we both feel great now
- The Blue River Boys played FOUR shows in one weekend at the River City Campground in South Whitley, it went really well
- The GIANT Gaerte Family Christmas in July took place, and I'd say it was a success, we had lots of fun
- One of our chickens got a fish hook stuck in the roof of her mouth...she's okay now we think
- Tuesday morning we had a new niece born!! Maggie Ann Keefer...everyones doing well and she's beautiful

Those are the BRIEF highlights that really stand out in my mind...i'm going to try to do better at updating. I know i've forgotten a lot but oh well haha. Make sure you check out all of the links in this post!

Monday, June 29, 2009

Remember this!


"GOD DOES NOT MAKE JUNK"

Tedd and I were at a friends birthday party yesterday and as I walked through her kitchen, this quote was on the whiteboard. I asked where it came from and she explained that her pastor had said it during the sermon yesterday morning. She said it made sense to her. When we are feeling down on ourselves, things aren't going as planned (which is everyday right! lol)...just remember we are worth something. God created us, and he doesn't make junk! This really touched me :)

Saturday, June 27, 2009

NEVER a dull moment!!!!!!!!!!!!


So...we had a near tradgedy on the MillerMF tonight. As you know we had ducklings hatch a little over a month ago. Because the momma's hatched babies out so early they decided they would do it again. There were two momma's setting on eggs (Gretchen and Fanny). All of the sudden about a week and a half ago (TOTAL incubation is 28 days) Fanny decided to stop setting. This apparently happens sometimes for no reason. We decided to let nature take its course and that we were not going to force her to do this duty.

ANYHOW, tonight when we were doing some work out there I asked Tedd if he would help me gather all of the eggs that were all over, the ones that she had decided to leave. We would throw them out in the field before they started to stink (lol...rotton eggs). So we took about 12 eggs out to the field and right as I took the first one in my hand to throw it far into the field, i screamed "WAIT!!!" I just felt something. I put the egg to my ear...and sure enough I could hear chirping and pipping (this is the noise that ducklings start to make when they are tapping the shell to come out). WHAT!?! We listened to them...and they are all at this point still alive! We have NO idea, other than it being hot outside lately, how these eggs would have survived having no mother to regulate their temperature and warmth. But so far they have. This is really amazing to me. Anyway the scary part is, we almost threw them all out!!! We plan to put the eggs in shavings with a heat lamp and pray for the best. Who knows if any of them will actually make it but...todays life lesson is...

DON"T COUNT YOUR DUCKLINGS BEFORE THEY HATCH!!! lol

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Flowers and "Foto" ops

I spent a good part of the day planting flowers in front of our house (I waited until Annuals were 50% off)











This is my FAV chickens "Leggy". She is one of the originals, and she has SUCH a personality. I started taking pics and she ran right up to pose for a pic. Of course she follows us everywhere, I think she'd jump in the car if we let her lol



A few of the duckies wanted their picture taken too tonight. They even got out of the pool to see what it was I had in my hands.

This is a pic of most of the front porch. Our grass where we ripped up all of those old ugly overgrown bushes is officially in and has been mowed for the first time. We've still got lots of ideas for the front porch (including a porch swing!) but if you saw it before...this is an improvement~
Wow 2 posts in a week...Thats AMAZING for me!








Surprise

Last evening mom and dad were here visiting. Mom and I were relaxing on the front porch and I decided to pull my hanging plants down to water them...and THIS is what i found! You can't tell here but it is TINY. Some little bird thought my flowers were a great place for a nest, and since I can't stand the thought of ruining it, i'm letting her keep it there... :)


Monday, June 15, 2009

THTCI


So probably none of you this but i'm a VERY scheduled and organized person. I thrive on my DAILY lists and i find it very hard to function and be productive without a list to guide me and to check off as I go throughout my days (the ones at home at least) I work a lot of hours on the days that I do work ( I worked over 12 today) so on my days off, I must be quick and hardworking.

In January I was in the Christian Bookstore in Fort Wayne and stumbled across a book called "The house that Cleans itself". This immediately peaked my interest! Wow, that sure did sound exciting lol. Well it definately is not a secret concoction that cleans your house without any elbow grease but I will say I LOVE this book. I definately encourage you to all read it soon! The author (Mindy Starns Clark...visit her here)makes many very good points. One of her main themes is to stop trying to change your families behaviors and to change your home to FIT those behaviors. Another thing she points out is that the more things you have, the more you have to take care of...simplicity!!! LOVE IT!

The author makes it a very fun read and at the end of every chapter there is even a personal messy horror story about getting caught with your house dirty haha. One thing I will say for sure is that NO ONE ever stops by when my house is clean...no one. But as soon as it gets dirty its like theres a sign that says "stop in!"

Now...if I would just apply all the principles and go through my house...someday!

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Raising Chickens #1

We have had chickens for over a year now so we certainly do not know it all...but we have LEARNED SOOO much. I get quite a few questions about raising chickens and I thought I would start a little mini-series on raising animals, but i will focus on poultry. If anyone has ANY questions please ask me, if i don't know...i WILL find out lol. Keep in mind this is OUR experience and we may not have the same ideas someone else does. :)

First I will quickly tell you how our chicken ordeal began. We had only been married about two months, and the only animals we had were 2 inside kitties. We don't have a ton of land (2 acres) but we knew we wanted some kind of outside animal for a hobby. Horses and cows or other larger livestock animals take a lot of time, a livestock trailer, and eat A LOT (which we would soon find out that chickens did too lol). So we decided to give raising chickens a try!
We decided to order from a hatchery (very smart choice!). We did this because they will ship you day old chicks, they are generally healthier, and have not been exposed to bad weather, lice, disease etc.

At the same time we ordered our chicks, we decided we had NO idea what we were doing. So, we went to the library and rented books...lots of books! We honestly read through them and by the time our chicks came we were glad that we had researched.
When you order chicks from a hatchery you have to order in groups of 25 or more. The reason for this is so that they can pack them very snuggly for warmth. Chicks need to have very very regulated temperature for the first 6 weeks of their lives, the first week they should be at about 95 degrees. The hatcheries can ship you these day old chicks through the mail with no food or water. WHAT?! As crazy as it sounds its true. Right before a chick hatches out of its shell, it absorbs the last bit of yolk (which is the chicks nutrition). This last "gulp" of yolk can last the chick up to 72 hours. Which means in theory chicks can go 3 days without food or water after hatching. However, as soon as you can get them food and water the better and stronger they will be.
When you get your little box of cheeping babies home to your fully set up home( we will go over this later) the very first thing you do is take each chick out, one at a time and "teach" it to eat and drink, after all they've never done it before! When your chicks first arrive you should have shavings covered in newspaper for them to live on. The newspaper only needs to cover the shavings for a few days. This is long enough for them to realize its not the shavings that you want to eat, only the food! You should also have chick feeders filled with a commercial chick feed, for them to munch on. Personally I think that the water is the most important. With brand new baby chicks you should add a few tablespoons of white sugar to their drinking water. This gives them a glucose boost after a long and sometimes stressful ride. To "teach" them to drink you simply take them (they will wiggle and try to fight it) and dip their beak into the sugar water. After a few quick dips of their beak you will see it "click" and they will take off and drink on their own. Be sure that their drinker is not big enough for them to get into or they will VERY likely drown. :(
This is when you want to make sure they are at an optimal temperature. Depending on the building that you have your little "brooder" set up, sometimes temp regulation is harder than others. Buildings with good ventilation will be a little easier. Just remember as the temperature outside changes...so does the temperature under the heat lamp. Chicks that are too cold AND chicks that are too hot are both miserable. And when chicks are miserable they do bad things (in our experience...they PICK)
When chickens are this age, they DO need commercial chick starter (you can't start them on scratch or scraps, it does not have the nutrition they need). They also HAVE to be in an enclosed building, preferably in an enclosure that is safe from all other animals. They can not immediately be free range. They should be enclosed for at least six weeks. Also remember when building your enclosure that when you get your chicks you'll want them to be fairly confined so they can be close and not "forget" where the food and water are. But as they grow, your enclosure will have to grow as well. And remember that chicks can fly early. The last 8 chicks we raised (they're 6 wks old now) were flying out of their 2 ft tall enclosure at 2 weeks! Monitor them closely lol.
Lastly, for today I will say a word about where you get your chicks from. I mentioned earlier that hatcheries are the best option for purchasing chicks. If you can't get them from a hatchery (usually because you want less than 25) there are a few other options. Many people get their chicks from a feed store, usually Tractor supply. The biggest things to remember with this option is to know what you're getting. I feel very confident in saying that 80-90 % of the chicks that these stores sell are whats called "straight run". This means they are not sexed. So if you get 10 chicks...8 of them could be roosters. If you're going to do this...you need to know what you're going to do with 8 roosters! lol If you're going to get them at a swap meet or from a private owner they can carry a lot of disease. When you get them they should be quarentined for at least 2-3 weeks.

Sunday, June 7, 2009

Miller Mini Farm Updates



So we thought it was finally time to update you on a few of the MillerMiniFarm residents! This first shot is from the barn looking at the house and Amos's fence...this is where you'll usually find him on nice days!


Speaking of Amos, here he is with HIS watering can...it became his after the spout broke off and I gave it to him...he is SO proud of it and carries it around the yard everywhere!






Here is one of our FR (Free Range) chickens. Shes hanging out in the barn and when I found her she wanted to go on a lawn mower ride!
The chickens are honestly so much fun to have and watch. There is never a dull moment. Imagine our surprise when we couldn't find their eggs in the normal places...then we found they had made a "nest" in the LAWN SWEEPER. At least we found them!



Yesterday I went to the swap meet! Its a very exciting place with lots to look at and Lots of tempting critters to buy. Before our little building burnt down my favorite little chicken was "Ollie". He unfortunately did not make it out of the fire :(. However, Ollie was a Golden Polish Rooster. Yesterday at the swap meet I FINALLY found a Polish breeder who has lots and lots of them! (He was the only one out of hundreds) So he sold me a very beautiful pair (male and female) of Golden Polish chicks! They are an ornamental chicken, so basically just for fun. Trust me if you think they have funny "hair" now wait until a few more months passes. They are so much fun, we named them "Elvis" and "Elvira" :)

Looks like they're about to kiss! LOL


Remember those TINY ducklings about four weeks ago. Well here they are now...almost all grown up. They look kind of funny because they are getting their feathers but they will be floating in the pool with the adults before we know it!

Friday, June 5, 2009

Egg Candling

The three ducklings are growing very rapidly. We thought three ducklings to add into the minifarm was a GREAT number. Well we had no idea (every single day is a learning experience lol) that if ducks laid and hatched babies very early in the spring like ours did that they can do it twice in one year! Gretchen and Fanny have both been working hard laying second nests. They started setting on Tuesday. They have a 28 day incubation period and tonight we candled eggs. We only candled the eggs under one duck. We gently pulled her off her nest and counted ten eggs. We gently put each one above the light...and EACH one was fertile. When the light shines through a fertile egg you can see tiny blood vessels all throughout the egg. How amazing! God never ceases to amaze us with his miracles here on the millerminifarm. It is truly mesmerizing to see how the live quacking ducklings start out as a tiny dot with blood vessels haha. You probably all think were Kooky but we think its pretty neat. I hope to get a good picture or two to show of their development. Fun times.
P.S. if you know anyone who wants miniature ducks for outside pets...let me know in case we have quie a few!

Monday, June 1, 2009

Busy Busy

So by now I've figured out that I'm not the best at blogging lol. I have got WAY too much stuff on my mind I guess, but when I think about it I really do enjoy it! So an update on whats going on around here...
Tedd is "kind of" back to work for a different company but the job is not in full swing yet so its not exactly steady work, but still better than nothing, so that is exciting. Oh and Dad is back to work, he started today (yay Tedd and Dad!)
It will for sure be another crazy week around here and on the mini farm! After working all day, I drove straight to Huntington to give a speech to a Therapy Dog Group. I spoke on Emergency First Aid (for Dogs of course) I think people liked it and I feel like they learned quite a bit they did not know, so thats good! I had a lot of good questions afterward. Amos has Agility Class tomorrow night, I have a Spanish class Thursday night. Saturday we will be spending most of the day at the Swap Meet (SOOO much fun), that p.m. is my sis's b-day celebration, and Sunday is Church and Amos's Birthday Party. Umm...yes we ARE having a 1st birthday party for our dog, he's like our child haha. All of his little doggie friends are invited. We are having it at his training center, where they have about 7 acres fenced in...they will have a ball!
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Unfortunately though I also have some bad news, my great Aunt (Auntie Mac) died today :(. She was a special person to me during my life (she had no children and her husband died years ago). Auntie Mac could be quite foward and was not afraid to say anything to you. In my early teen years I went to visit her, and she said something that hurt my feelings VERY much. For years I would not go see her, and I held a grudge. Just recently (before she got sick) I decided that enough was enough, it was time to make amends and get back into each others lives. I went to see her, we caught up, and I apologized. Since then I have went to see her almost weekly. I just went and saw her this last Friday (3 days ago). There are many emotions are going through my mind and heart. There is definately regret, for holding grudges, and for missing out on years of what could have been a better relationship.
BUT, I have to say although I'm sad I really am thanking God right now. I know that it was God who helped me to go that first day to see her again and apologize. I prayed before I went in that first day, for him to give me the words to speak. He definately delivered. I am SO happy that I have a God like that. Because of him, in the past few months Auntie Mac and I reminiced about all of the fun times when she would babysit me when I was younger, we talked about my life now, and most of all we told each other many many times that we loved each other.
I left her room Friday after telling her that I loved her, and I thank God for that. I know that she is in a better place now and I know that God knew I needed to mend those bridges with her.
The other part of this is to encourage you to mend broken ties with those you care about. So many times we hold silly grudges, we say things we don't mean, or we simply DON't tell someone we love them or care about them. It is so important to do this, you never know what will happen in life and you would regret it if you did not.
Lastly, please keep our family in your prayers this week during viewing and funeral arrangements. And thank God that Auntie Mac is out of pain and with the Lord now.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

My June Challenge!


Ok so I have been inspired by Megan's "30 Day work out challenge". My weight AND my excercise and eating habits have fluctuated drastically all over the board over the past 4 years. I do great some days and horrible others. I have a goal that someday I will reach a very happy medium, although I realize this is an area that I will probably always struggle with.
Anyway, I have decided that maybe if I blog about it and I have you all to hold me accountable I will get off my tush and take some action. My challenge to myself is to eat healthier and to exercise every single day from tomorrow morning until the last day in June. Tomorrow Morning is Day 1!! The great part is I LOVE to walk and so does my puppy Amos. AND...I have some vacation days tomorrow thru Sunday, so I can try to start a great habit four days in a row...Pray for me!

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Summer Bliss







Wow what beautiful days the Lord has blessed us with! Things are going well around here on the Miller Mini Farm. We've been very busy (too busy to be on the computer lol) outside tending to flowers, newly planted grass, newly hatched baby ducks and chickens, and so on.






Amos was as Puppy Day Care today where they worked on some of his "issues", its going to be a long haul but we are ready to do what it takes for him to be happy. I had two days off in a row...AWESOME!




Our biggest project for yesterday was the duck enclosure. We built them a fenced in area so that they could simply go in and out of their barn as they pleased. We had pea gravel delivered, which is what we used to cover the ground and cut down on so much of the "ick" lol. We also purchased them a "kiddy pool". Let me just say they LOVE it! They act like they are swimming on a giant lake :). The first pic is "Leggy", one of our free range chickens. She kept coming across the yard and walking into the fenced in area while tedd was working. She was very interested in his progress.



Next pic is the rapidly growing baby ducks. They are doing very well and are growing like weeds. Its been so much fun to watch them waddle and grow. The last pic is a few of the ducks swimming in the new pool!

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

NO TV!!!


Two months ago Tedd and I completely removed our TV from our living room. We rolled up the cords, boxed up the converter, and said goodbye. I never wanted to have a TV to begin with but we got one anyway. I have said many times that I could have been born Amish lol. Anyway this is one of the best decisions we have made in our home thus far.

Many of you, if not all of you, probably think that its not a big deal because you don't watch much TV anyway. You're in denial lol If you ACTUALLY kept track of how long the television was on each day in your home, you would be surprised. In MY opinion, not to say it needs to be yours, TV is useless. Years ago before TV's were in 99% of American homes, what did people do? They talked, read scripture, visited with neighbors, they played board games, the children played outside, they ate around the table, and they worked around their homes.


Today, the average American watches 4 hours of TV a day...A DAY!!! 66% of Americans have more than 3 televisions in their homes. Children spend 900 hours in school each year, and 1500 hours watching television. This is so sad to me. During a sermon our pastor pointed out that the average person will spend (brace yourself) NINE YEARS of their life watching television. WOW...aren't there much more rewarding things we could be doing with our lives than being glued to the television?


I by no means think that TV should be banned or that people who have a TV are lazy or bad. I think that for most people the best plan is strict time stipulations. Set a timer and only let your family watch LIMITED amounts of TV. Think of all of the exposure to violence, sex and crime. I am appalled at the mere audacity of certain television shows, especially when they "Bash" God. Jesus called us to live "in the world, but not of the world" I don't think we should completely shut ourselves off from the world. Go to an Internet news site, listen to the radio, or communicate with the people around you. Surrounding yourself (by watching) with profane language and bad morals does no one any good.

Everyone is different but this has sure made a difference in our lives!

Sunday, May 10, 2009

FIRST DUCKLING HATCHED!!!


This morning when we checked under the momma ducks we saw two cracked. After church we were pretty sure the one baby died trying to get out (which we are pretty sure it has). But when we lifted the second duck off her nest, there among the other eggs sat this ADORABLE little duckling. I am holding it in the palm of my hand and it is TINY. Its probably the cutest thing i've seen forever. And today this duckling (on Mother's Day no less lol) is the very first baby to ever be born on the Miller Mini Farm. How fun! We have at least two more eggs that are chirping and waiting for their birthdays to arrive. If anyone wants to come visit them, I encourage you to come soon. Because this breed of ducks are miniature, they are almost full size by ONE month of age.


And P.S. to all the mothers of real human children...HAPPY MOTHERS DAY! And thank you for all of your hard work!

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

The Book





For probably the past 3 years or more I have felt the "need" to write something. I'm not sure why I have felt this way. I am definately not a writer. I'm not even an avid reader like my husband. Tedd frequents the library, and in one Sunday afternoon he can turn the pages of a novel like they're on fire. He has read no less than 70 books and novels since we've been married for a little over one year. (Thank the Lord for free Library Rentals!!)




Anyway, I've been telling Tedd more often lately for some reason I feel the need to write a book. Wierd I know, but I guess if the Lord wants me to write something I should do it. Maybe it will turn into a small article, maybe it will turn into a novel, or maybe when I start writing God just wants to open my eyes to something that he c an't get through to me otherwise. Whatever the reason it must be important.






SO as odd as this is to me, I ask for your prayers that God lead my head, hands and heart in the direction that would be pleasing to him. Has anyone else been called to do something they felt at first was a little odd??

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Beautiful Tuesday!

The rainy Tuesday streak has been broken!! Finally a nice day off, and let me tell you I've been soaking it up so far. I vowed that if I had a nice day off I would not do ANY housework inside I would just stay outside!

Yesterday we got rid of many of our adult chickens because they were eating their eggs (see earlier blogs). We tried EVERYTHING that anyone knew to try and it didn't work. So we kept 4 of our best chickens to free range and Tedd took the rest to their appointment:(. It was sad and I felt bad because we had raised them from day old chicks, but we just couldn't afford to feed them if they weren't giving us any eggs at all. The four "free-rangers" have been out having the time of their lives for days now and are still laying eggs for us so thats good!

This morning I spent the entire morning cleaning out the barn. It was tough work but it now looks great (the areas I got to). And Tedd finished my new clothesline, while Amos VERY happily ran around and played in his fence (a life saver lol).
Chain' o Lakes sounded appealing so we loaded the pooch and spent a few hours there walking the trails and letting Amos play in the water...what fun :)
I can not thank the Lord enough for this much needed sunshine that I've gotten so far today! The best part is somehow I also have tomorrow off and while its raining I can catch up inside the house on all of the things I refuse to do today:)
Off to make supper and take Amos to his first night of "Agility 4"...

Friday, May 1, 2009

So THATS what happened!?!


Just a little something to hopefully make you laugh today. Happy Friday!

Notice his beverage of choice?

Thursday, April 30, 2009











The pictures I promised!








First this is Gretchen and Fanny trying to both sit in the same nest. They look huge in this pic but they are actually less than 2 pounds:)








Also some pics of Tedd and Amos in the new fence!








Next is a few of the cute new baby chicks, Golden Comets.