Sunday, March 27, 2011

Snow & Flowers


We had snow all day yesterday!  I found it interesting that we’d been working throughout the week to get the yard looking nice, but the snow was able to beautify the yard in just a few hour’s time.


Looks like a perfect background


Our white pine



Mom’s Magnolia tree



A branch from one of the trees in the apple orchard



As you can see in this video, a bird got stuck inside of the bird feeder and Benjamin had to rescue him.

Friday, March 25, 2011


We had another civil war era dance lesson and, once again, had a great time!  Noah didn’t sit out this time and he talked about how much fun he had all of the way home and showed us a few dances later at home.

It may be hard to distinguish the three of us in the videos below, so here are pictures of what we were wearing:


Andrew                          Benjamin                                          Noah


I am still a little ignorant as to the names of all of the dances, but I believe the video is a simple schottische dance:

This next video is one of my favorites (as you’ll see in the video I got a little carried away with the spinning and didn’t stop early enough a couple of times. Smile) and it’s called the 9-pin quadrille dance:

The 9-pin dance is like musical chairs, because when the music stops you have to find a partner and the person who is left out become the single 9-pin in the middle. In the last clip of the video, Noah was the last 9 pin and was supposed to put on a one-man show for the others who were circling around him Smile.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Mulching the Yard


Yay! It’s mulching day!


I’ve always enjoyed mulching our yard because of the huge difference it can make in such a short period of time.


Thankfully we’ve already gotten both riding lawn mowers running, although the mower won’t engage on one of them.



We had to make a couple of berms last year to help manage the enormous amounts of water that are eroding our yard.  We’ll also add some ornamental plants to the berm.





We’ve also ordered some grass plugs that should hopefully transform this yard into a lawn.

Friday, March 18, 2011


Believe it or not, we just returned from a dancing class!  The reason why we’re taking these classes is that after this year’s CHEF Conference there’ll be a Civil War Ball, so CHEF organized these dancing classes.  Most of these dances are English Country dances or line dances, where the entire community is involved.

My brothers and I would’ve looked forward to this event with great dread, however Mom didn’t even tell us she had signed us up for the class and we still didn’t know what we were going to do until Mom pulled into the parking lot of the church where the class was being held.

There was a good turnout of about 75-100 people from the age of 5 to 65, there was a good mix of different ages that really made the night fun.  Mr. Ramsey, the instructor explained to us that dancing helps create a balance of the body and coordination of the feet with the rest of the body, in light of our recent foot-related accidents, dancing may be just what the doctor recommended!  Benjamin was joking with us later at home, he said that maybe when he was with a trapping buddy skinning a beaver he’d say, (in an English accent of course) “Oh dear, look at the time! I must go and attend one of the dancing classes we have every fortnight!”

Despite my presentiments I had a blast and am looking forward to the next 7 classes before the conference!  All my brothers had to admit it ended up being a lot better than we’d expected at first.  I suppose that with a name like the Gallantry Training Center we should’ve welcomed some instruction in culture more warmly.

I’ll try to snap a few photos during our next class!

Friday, March 11, 2011

Another Beaver!

Benjamin caught another beaver in one of his traps today!


  We drove to the house of a very experienced who helped Benjamin skin the beaver without flawing the pelt.


   After saying goodbye we saw about 8 deer along the sides of the driveway and they were only about 20 feet away.  By the time we had the camera out we only took this one picture before they had run away.

CHEF Conference 2011

   My family is HIGHLY recommending that if at all possible you and your family attend this year’s Christian Home Educators Fellowship of Missouri’s Conference coming up on June 21-22.    For the 150th Anniversary of the beginning of the Civil War (aka War of Northern Aggression *wink*) there will be a lot of re enactments and a civil war ball at the end of the second day.


Take a look at this video on the CHEF website and then come back to this page

  If you didn’t spot him, Noah was in this video.  It was made by Nick Burns who we met at the conference a couple of years ago at the Pendragon booth.  Noah enjoyed hanging out with Nick at last year’s conference and did some acting for him Smile.  When Noah saw the video tonight he was pretty excited!


phoca_thumb_l_speakingAgain, we highly recommend this conference to anyone-not just homeschoolers-who want to learn about the history surrounding the civil war, Christian education and Christian worldview. Doug Phillips and Dr. Voddie Baucham are in our top 5 favorite speakers and are both very dynamic and deliver great messages.  My brothers and I also like the historical battle lectures given by Dr. Bill Potter, and I’ve enjoyed listening to Dr. Herb Titus on Constitutional Law just as enjoyed Dr. Paul Jehle last year.



Thursday, March 10, 2011

Mom’s Birthday


Today is my Mom’s birthday!  My Grandma came over with a cake and lunch and then later we met up with Grandpa and Kate for a dinner at the Texas Roadhouse Steakhouse. 






This barrel of peanuts is in the waiting area for people to crunch and munch to pass the time.  However, the best part is that you throw the peanut shell unto the floor!


Mom & Grandpa

Unfortunately my Mom caught the flu that everyone else in our family had already been through and has been battling that this week.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

2011 Thus Far…

  If this looks like a long post please remember that this s the past 61 days…I mean 59 days…in just one post. Our first two months of this year have brought so many changes it’s hard to imagine what the rest of the year will bring (and that’s including a month that was short changed a couple of days.)  We’ve mainly just been dealing with health and nutrition problems that have been coming up. 
Up until just a few weeks ago my Mom had been having severe health problems especially since December that would make her not able to get out of bed at all for days on end.  She’s gotten some new health supplements that worked in the past and has been feeling great and full of energy for the past couple of weeks.
On January 6th, I sprained my ankle and even now am still having trouble running on it. 
On January 17 Benjamin had a close call when he fell through the ice and into the deep creek a long way from home.
A few weeks later Noah broke his big toe and had to keep pressure off of it for a few weeks.  
A couple of weeks later we had a family meeting about trying to incorporate some healthier food options into our diet over a few month’s time.  Last Thursday I started running a fever and since then until yesterday I’ve been very sick with the flu.  I had some very high fevers and coughing and have pretty much stayed in bed the entire time.  It feels great to be up again, though I am very weak.
Yesterday was 6-month anniversary of my Dad’s death and we’ll be putting flowers on his grave in remembrance.  It’s amazing how many things have happened since then, yet it still seems like yesterday.
Benjamin caught a beaver in his trap, but he also caught my flu and he’s been in bed all day today with a fever.  Kate’s showing signs of being sick too, so Mom and Noah ran some errands today and got some extra groceries just in case the flu keeps on going around for awhile. (You’ve just got to admire how are generous family shares things with one another.)
By the way, I added a post about the Christian Archer's Dinner that you may not have noticed because it was retro-actibely posted.

Storm Damage


We were under a tornado warning for a few hours Sunday night and a few tornadoes touched down in the St. Louis metro area.  We had our share of damage when we came out of hiding to see what the wind had done.


On our deck, a large branch had fallen and ripped through the roof of our canopy’s roof.  This picture was taken from the roof by Noah


Taken from below

If we weren’t using our outdoor furniture right now for our kitchen table this branch probably would’ve smashed the glass top.


Knocked just the cover off of the light


This used to have the form of a hedge Smile

Benjamin Catches a Beaver!



When Ben checked his trap this morning he found to his delight that he had caught a beaver!


His beaver trap is very powerful and it had broken the beaver’s back, so he died instantaneously and painlessly.


Beavers can be very destructive to farm land because each year their dams flood hundreds of acres of crops.


A friend/neighbor who is also a VERY experienced trapper and hunter showed Benjamin how to skin the beaver so that he could keep the fur.  Our friend was very helpful and did a great job of explaining the process to Ben and to the rest of us who were watching.  Later in March Benjamin will send his beaver skin in a package with a couple of other trapper’s skins to a tanning facility where they’ll be properly tanned and sent back.