Friday, November 30, 2012

Farm Friday: Straight From the Horse's Mouth

Couple weeks ago, the farrier was here.
And in the process of holding my pony Finnegan while he was getting his feet trimmed, I found myself with my hand inside his mouth.

OK, in looking back at that, I realize there are a whole lot of misplaced modifiers, let me  clarify...

*I was holding the pony, not the farrier. I don't mean I wasn't holding the farrier (please allow me a second to daydream......OK, I'm back), I mean the farrier wasn't holding the pony, I was.
*The pony, not the farrier, was getting his feet trimmed.
*My hands were inside the pony's mouth, not the farrier's mouth (please allow me...oh never mind, I need to get a move on, here).











ANYway, when my hand was inside the pony's mouth (and I have no idea why it was really there), I cut my thumb on something razor-sharp.

That's odd, I thought. Pony's teeth aren't really all that sharp.

So I did a quick on-the-spot dental exam, and realized one of Finn's incisors appeared to be broken. The top part, where it meets the gum, was pulling forward, and seemed like the whole tooth was about to come out. YIKES!  Without their incisors, they can't graze.  Without grazing, they can't eat, without eating, they can't live.  This was serious!

Soon as the farrier left (sigh), I called the vet, whose number I have committed to memory.

I explained the situation to the receptionist, and she put the vet on the line.

I recapped the sitch to the vet, and asked,

Is this something I need the vet for, or should I call the equine dentist?

Well, he says, how old is your horse?

Two and a half, says I.

If he's two and a half, that sounds like he's losing a cap.

That sounds serious.

Not at all.  At around that age, a horse's permenant tooth starts to come in, and it pushes the cap out.

So when can you come out?

I don't think I need to come out.  This is a perfectly normal process.  He'll do this again in about a year, and then the year after that until all his permenant teeth are in.

So how much will it cost me?

You don't seem to understand.  This is normal.  His tooth isn't broken.  The cap is just pushing out.

If I can find some other problems for you to work on while you're here, will I get a discount?

Nothing's broken!  There's nothing to fix!

I don't....I don't understand.  Horse.  Tooth.  Problem.  Vet.  Money.  That's the way it works.

I.  Don't.  Need.  To.  See. Your.  Horse.

Well, I guess if you're all booked up right now, I'll try to keep an eye on him.  If he doesn't appear to be in discomfort, and he seems to be eating OK and not dropping weight, then we'll just sit on this for a bit.

OK.  That sounds like a plan.  You call me if he starts to lose weight.

OK, Doc, thanks....




(Sheesh, you can't get good help when you need it.)



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Thursday, November 29, 2012

I Know It's Thursday, But How About Something on Adoption?


























It is, after all, National Adoption Month.
What could be more important?
Truly, what?

Regardless of how you voted a few weeks ago, I challenge anyone to find fault with President Obama's words in his proclamation below....


Presidential Proclamation -- National Adoption Month, 2012
NATIONAL ADOPTION MONTH, 2012

- - - - - - -

BY THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA

A PROCLAMATION

As a Nation that believes all children deserve the chance to reach their full potential, we have a fundamental responsibility to ensure each of them grows up knowing the love and protection of a permanent family. During National Adoption Month, we give voice to children who are still waiting for that opportunity, celebrate the bond that unites adoptive parents with their sons and daughters, and recommit to providing every child with the care and security that will nurture their development and well-being.

Later this month, many Americans will also mark National Adoption Day by completing a foster care adoption and embracing a new member of their family. Driven by reasons unique to their households but united by the spirit of compassion that moves all who choose to adopt, these parents will take up our country's most important task -- the work of raising our sons and daughters. As we celebrate the contributions of adoptive parents across our Nation, let us also strive to eliminate discriminatory barriers that would separate foster children from a loving family. Adoptive families come in many forms, and it is essential that all qualified adults have the opportunity to care for a child in need.

My Administration remains committed to helping every child find a loving home. We have partnered with faith-based and community organizations across America to help connect children with adoptive parents, and we continue to work with State, local, and tribal governments to improve child outcomes; enhance safety, permanency, and well-being; and support adoptive families. I was proud to sign the Affordable Care Act and the International Adoption Simplification Act, which have made it easier for families to adopt, as well as the Child and Family Services Improvement and Innovation Act, which will help reduce the length of time young children are without families. We have built on those efforts as part of the National Adoption Campaign, which continues to bring adoption and foster care into our national conversation.

Thousands of children living in America hope for the comfort and safety of a loving family. This month, we pay tribute to the dedicated professionals who help make those children's dreams a reality, sharpen our resolve to find a permanent home for every child, and celebrate the stories of all whose lives have been touched by adoption.

NOW, THEREFORE, I, BARACK OBAMA, President of the United States of America, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and the laws of the United States, do hereby proclaim November 2012 as National Adoption Month. I encourage all Americans to observe this month by answering the call to find a permanent and caring family for every child in need, and by supporting the families who care for them.

IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this first day of November, in the year of our Lord two thousand twelve, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and thirty-seventh.

BARACK OBAMA


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In case you didn't know it, I'm like the queen of blog-hoppin' lately. It's kind of like square dancing but without the dated outfits, smelly gym, and elderly caller.  You can find my full schedule in my sidebar, but here's where I'm hoppin' off to today...

A Rural Journal's Rural Thursday Blog Hop
Two In Diapers' Mommy Brain Mixer

Come join the fun!




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If you have a question that just can't wait,
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Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Wordless Wednesday: Farm Market

Is there anything I like better than a farmer's market?

No.

Wait....

No.











































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For my full blog-hop schedule, see the list in my sidebar, but since it's Wednesday, that means today I'm linking up with Crafty Spices Wordless Wednesday, Tilly's Nest's Down Home;and My Life and Kids Finding the Funny.

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Tuesday, November 27, 2012

TALU Tuesday

Gobble, gobble, did you all have a nice Thanksgiving?

Well, it's time to put down the turkey, because it's that time again!

Time for TALU Tuesday.

That's right, the Tuesday Archive Link-Up.

Time to pull your treasured old posts out of those cobwebby archives, dust them off, and give them new life where they will be seen and enjoyed by untold millions OK, thousands of viewers.

See, this link-up is hosted by several people, who, all together have thousands upon thousands of followers. So when you link your post up with this party? Your post will show up on all their blogs, to all of their followers.

All you've got to do is:


1) link up your post using the linky tool below.

2) visit the hosts and leave a comment to say hi.

3) and try to visit three or more of the blogs linked up and leave a comment. They'll all be doing the same, so it's like a giant hippie love fest. Bring your own flowers.







Oh and when you comment? Put in the secret code "TALU" (Tuesday Archive Link-Up) and then give a little wink so we'll all know what you're talking about.

Have fun!



Now here are your TALU hosts, wonderful gals every one....



hosts:

Jennifer, author of I Am Not Superwoman

Jessica, author of Sugar In My Grits

Anne, author of Life On The Funny Farm

Debbie, author of Wrinkled Mommy










And PS? If you'd like to show off your blog-hoppin' skills to all your followers, just right-click the image above (crying baby) and save it to your desktop. Then just load the image to your sidebar and link it to my blog! Easy peasy....



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Blog Hops I'm following today:

Tuesday:
Heavenly Homemaker's Gratituesday
Crafty Garden Mama's Tuesday Greens
The Wrinkled Mommy's Tuesday Archive Link-Up

You can see my full hoppin' schedule in my sidebar.

Come join the fun!

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If you have a question that just can't wait,
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Monday, November 26, 2012

Mirth Monday









































Image courtesy: Penni Putman via Pinterest


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In case you didn't know it, I'm like the queen of blog-hoppin' lately. It's kind of like square dancing but without the dated outfits, smelly gym, and elderly caller. You can find my full schedule in my sidebar, but sice today is Monday, here's where I'm hoppin':

Homestead Revival's Barn Hop
Natural Living Mamma's Natural Living Mondays
The Chicken Chick's Clever Chicks
A Cat-Like Curiosity's Monday Mantras
Ponder Wonder's Soul Food Monday
@ Home Take 2's Mom's Monday Mingle
DIY Dreamer's Pinterest Repin Party
DIY Home Sweet Home's More the Merrier Monday


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Please don't hate.
If you have a question that just can't wait,
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And I'll answer right back because I'm, you know, the Mom.

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Inspiration Sunday










































Words by Robert Frost
Image pinned by Marie Raffo on Pinterest

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I've no time for fun.
Please don't judge me,
Please don't hate.
If you have a question that just can't wait,
Send me an email at farmbeachgal@yahoo.com,
And I'll answer right back because I'm, you know, the Mom.





Saturday, November 24, 2012

Chicken-Scratch-Saturday- Chili Dip

My friend Jennifer gave me this recipe years ago. It's a tortilla chip dip that you're supposed to serve at parties, football games, you know, normal social occassions.

Which I do, but...

OK, confession time. I make this to serve as dinner for my family. It's our favorite thing in the world, and every last one of us eats it and comes back for more.

I'll give you the recipe.

How and when you serve it is entirely up to you. I won't ask....



Chili Dip
(This makes a normal amount. For my not-so-normal family, I double it.)

1# ground beef
8oz can tomato sauce
8oz grated cheddar cheese
1c sour cream
12 oz corn
1 diced tomato
1 bag of your favorite tortilla chips.

Brown the beef, and drain.
Stir in tomato sauce and the corn.
Place 1/3 on the bottom of the pan.
Put 1/2 of the cheese on top of that.
Put another 1/3 of the meat in.
Spread the sour cream on top.
Put the last 1/3 of the meat on top of the sour cream.

Bake at 350 for 20 minutes.
Put 2nd 1/2 of cheese on and bake again till the cheese is melted.
Top with the diced tomato.
Dip your chips and commence slobbering.






























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In case you didn't know it, I'm like the queen of blog-hoppin' lately. It's kind of like square dancing but without the dated outfits, smelly gym, and elderly caller.

You can find my full schedule in my sidebar, but since today is Saturday, here's where I'm hoppin'....

Saturday:
Camera Critter's Life With Dogs Pet Blogger Hop
Tutus and Tea Parties' Pinteresting Party


Come join the fun!

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Rudeness disclaimer:

I love all your comments,
I read every one!
But I can't hit 'reply',
I've no time for fun.
Please don't judge me,
Please don't hate.
If you have a question that just can't wait,
Send me an email at farmbeachgal@yahoo.com,
And I'll answer right back because I'm, you know, the Mom.





Friday, November 23, 2012

Farm Friday: The Cost of Sustainability

OK, as I promised in my last post, I am going to answer a few questions about the process of raising chickens for meat.

Cost to the Wallet
Let me get this out of the way:
It is not cheaper to raise chickens for meat than it is to buy them in the grocery store.

However...
That is assuming you are buying regular-grade (as opposed to organic) meat, or that you are buying whole chickens and cutting them up. If you just buy parts (boneless, skinless breasts, for example), then you would probably save money by raising your own. Or like I said, if you pay a premium price for buying organic, or buying local farm-raised chicken, you will definitely see a cost savings.

So....

Here's how the costs broke down for me:

12 cornish-rock peeps @ $1.97 (I'll call it $2) apiece..........$24
3 - 50lb bags of Start-n-Grow feed @ $15 a bag..................$45
Processing costs @$1.50 per bird x 9 birds..........................$13.50
6 cockarels (company sent for free as "fillers").......................0
1 extra bag of feed to take cockarels to maturity..................$15
Processing costs @$2 a bird x 6 birds (over 9 is cheaper)....$12
_______________________________________________________________________
                                                                                             $109.50

$109.50 divided by 15 birds = $7.30 per bird, which comes out roughly to about $1.80 per pound (based on a rough estimate of 4 lbs a bird).

Now, here's how costs could be less:

*Ordering more peeps (I plan on ordering 50 next summer), will reduce the cost per bird.
*Having them all processed at the same time will reduce the processing cost per bird.
*Raising them in the summer, with time on pasture, will reduce feed costs, as they will get a portion of their nutrition from grass, weeds, and bugs.
*Better "management" for reduced loss. I lost three birds: one died a couple days after shipment (which is pretty normal), one was (I think) taken by a rat or something. I don't know, it just disappeared. One drowned in a bucket during a hurricane. If I hadn't lost any, that figure would change to about $6.30 a bird.

Before I raised my own, I had bought farm-raised chicken a few times in an effort to steer clear of the factory-farm stuff.  I believe it was $3.00 a pound, for a whole chicken, so raising my own was definitely cheaper than that.

Oh, and I didn't include "facility" costs, such as heat lamps and pens,and the like, b/c I'll be using them for future batches of chickens, as well.


Cost of Time
Obviously, there was way more work involved with raising my own vs buying from a grocery store.  But really it wasn't all that bad.
Basically, it's a twice-a-day committment, of between 5 mins and 1/2 hour at a time.
Mornings (when they were little) I would let them out of their pen, and refill feed and water as needed, and then put them back in again in the evening.  Bedding needs to be refreshed now and then.  Waterers need to be scrubbed out from time to time.  That being said, I always spent more time out there than was needed, b/c they're so darn cute!  And entertaining.  And relaxing.

Cost to the Heart
Some asked if I had a hard time taking them to slaughter. 
Given my history with animals, a valid question.
However, I have to say, I really didn't have a problem with it.

All it took was me watching a couple of those videos of factory farm practices to realize that if I cared at all about animals, I either needed to become a vegetarian, or pay for the pricier stuff raised locally, or humanely raise my own animals for meat.  I chose the latter.  Well, at least for chicken (and eggs).  I will likely venture out to pork and beef in the near future, but baby steps, right?
So when I dropped them off, I didn't feel bad about sending them to their death, I felt good about giving them a good life.  If I'm not going to change the fact that a chicken is being killed for me to eat, I can at least change how that chicken lived and died.  Make sense?

Fortunately, almost the whole family felt the same way, and ate the very first meal I made with the chicken: chicken spaghetti (thanks, Ree Drummond!).  We had only one that didn't feel comfortable eating it, and that was OK by me.  There were no forced feedings under this roof.











Heavenly....

So bottom line, I was able to get chickens for about what I would pay in the grocery store, but I have the satisfaction of knowing I am feeding my family with food that has been raised humanely, and was not filled with antibiotics and steroids and nasty chicken "food", which more often than not includes: same species meat; feathers, hair, skin, hooves, and blood; manure and other animal waste; plastics; drugs and chemicals*.

I spent a lot of my time in the care of my chickens, but in my book it was enjoyable time.  Grounding.

My family and I (with the exception of one child) were able to get behind the concept of raising something for slaughter.  We have been able to move on with our lives and no one will be hitting the shrink couch because of it.  For other things, perhaps, but not for eating food we raised.


Anyway, I'm not sure if I covered all the questions, but I think I got most of them.
Have any more?  Send 'em my way and I'll do my best.









Image courtesy: thepioneerwoman.com
*from the Union of Concerned Scientists

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Since today is Friday, I'll be linking up with:
Deborah Jean's Dandelion House's Farmgirl Friday
Fresh Eggs Daily's FarmGirl Friday
Little Becky Homecky's Fantabulous Friday
@Home Take 2's Weekend Blog Walk
Oh So Amelia's Friday Chaos

Check out my full blog hoppin' schedule in my sidebar, and come join the fun!




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Rudeness disclaimer:

I love all your comments,
I read every one!
But I can't hit 'reply',
I've no time for fun.
Please don't judge me,
Please don't hate.
If you have a question that just can't wait,
Send me an email at farmbeachgal@yahoo.com,
And I'll answer right back because I'm, you know, the Mom.





.

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Giving Thanks

James' and Julie's first Thanksgiving home with us (three years ago, now), I wrote this post:


We have a book, called Thanks for Thanksgiving, that we take out every year at this time and read to the kids. They then write in the back of it what they're thankful for. A few examples from years past:

Thank you for lollipops. 
Thanks you for books.
Thank you for God and Santa and Jesus
(does that make Santa like the Holy Spirit or something?)
From Bella one year: I am thankful for my life.

This year we have two new handwritings in the book, from James and Julie.
From James:
Thanks for candy. Thanks for Mom. Thanks for turkey. Thanks for holideys. Thanks for new Family.
From Julie:
Thanks fore Holl (whole) family and love. Thanks for all hellp. I am soo hape (happy) I am in Amerikeh.




Yeah. I think that about says it all....

Have a blessed Thanksgiving, everyone!



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Thanks!



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In case you didn't know it, I'm like the queen of blog-hoppin' lately. It's kind of like square dancing but without the dated outfits, smelly gym, and elderly caller.

Here's the schedule I keep:
Monday:
Homestead Revival's Barn Hop
Natural Living Mamma's Natural Living Mondays
The Chicken Chick's Clever Chicks
A Cat-Like Curiosity's Monday Mantras
Ponder Wonder's Soul Food Monday
@ Home Take 2's Mom's Monday Mingle
DIY Dreamer's Pinterest Repin Party
DIY Home Sweet Home's More the Merrier Monday
Tuesday:
Heavenly Homemaker's Gratituesday
Crafty Garden Mama's Tuesday Greens
The Wrinkled Mommy's Tuesday Archive Link-Up
Wednesday:
My Life and Kids Finding the Funny
Tilly's Nest's Down Home
Hey Mommy, Chocolate Milk's Mom's Library Link-Up
Crafty Spices Wordless Wednesday
Thursday:
A Rural Journal's Rural Thursday Blog Hop
Two In Diapers' Mommy Brain Mixer
Friday:
Deborah Jean's Dandelion House's Farmgirl Friday
Fresh Eggs Daily's FarmGirl Friday
Little Becky Homecky's Fantabulous Friday
@Home Take 2's Weekend Blog Walk
Oh So Amelia's Friday Chaos
Saturday:
Camera Critter's Life With Dogs Pet Blogger Hop
Tutus and Tea Parties' Pinteresting Party
Sunday:
Dawn's Disaster's Super Sunday Link


Come join the fun!




****************

Rudeness disclaimer:

I love all your comments,
I read every one!
But I can't hit 'reply',
I've no time for fun.
Please don't judge me,
Please don't hate.
If you have a question that just can't wait,
Send me an email at farmbeachgal@yahoo.com,
And I'll answer right back because I'm, you know, the Mom.




Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Wordless Wednesday Becomes (for today): Something to be Thankful For!

Four years (and three days) ago, we were given a "da" that changed our lives forever.

Read on....




Our petition to adopt Borya and Julia has been granted by the judge!!!!! Hallelujah and praise be and amen and hot-diggity-dog!



Here's how it went down: we left at about 9:30 for our 10:00 court appt. Once at the court house Alma scurried around signing various papers as we stood in the middle of a crowded, bustling lobby while we waited for the rest of our group to arrive. For once an interior room was not scalding hot, but this time pretty darn cold. The unmanned metal detector was perpetually whistling its beeps as people passed in and out. Finally all the key players had arrived, and after waiting what seemed an eternity, they called is into the court room, which looked more like some kind of ante-room for signing doc-oo-ments than an actual court room. It opened right off the lobby, so we went directly in and arranged ourselves on the benches, per Alma's directions. Pretty soon the judge swooped in and we all stood and were again seated. As the speeches began, Alma leaned over to us and whispered the translations. As a Mom, I cringed to hear the directors and officials repeatedly state that in all the years the children have been in the orphanage, no family members have visited them, no one has shown any interest in their fate. I wanted so badly to cover their ears so they wouldn't hear those harsh words, that ugly truth, but all I could do was reach back to them to squeeze their hands. We stood and Fred read off our prepared statements, and Alma translated for the rest of the court. After hearing from the ministry official, the directors of both orphanages, and Fred and I, the prosecutor asked Borya to stand and answer some questions, and then Julia. They did a great job, standing tall, good eye contact, clear speaking voices. After a bit there was a short recess for the judge to review everything, so we waited in the lobby again. Poor Julia at this point began to cry, so the director of her school ushered her into a semi-quiet corner to talk to her. I didn't know what to do b/c she's gotta be just so scared and nervous right now and yet we still don't speak each other's languages, so I wasn't sure what I could say to her. She still really knows the director better than she knows me, so I just went over, and while the director was talking to her and giving her a hanky and a mint, I just rubbed her back and whispered "Ya tibya loublue" in her ear a few times (I love you). But she seemed OK, just slightly shaken and nervous. She's a scared 10 yr old little girl.



After only a couple minutes they called us back into the courtroom and we all stood (me with knees shaking) while the judge read his decision. It took him, I think, roughly four hours to read off all our names, address, kids' names, school names, and anything else he was creative enough to throw in the pot, before he issued the words, "petition is granted". Tears, hugs, hand-shaking and hand-holding all followed. I stopped short of doing cartwheels, afraid the judge might reverse his decision. Borya and I just gave each other a look that we mutually understood to mean, "Can you believe we finally did this?" I was concerned that Julia might cry again afterwards, but she seemed fine. And happy. We had a baby doll to give her, and she soon discovered that when you press its belly it laughs and says "I love you", which in turn made her laugh. That was music to my ears.



We then walked outside into snow flurries under blue skies, and handed out gifts, took pictures, and did more hugging and crying. It will be a long wait till we see them again, possibly more than a month. I'm sure that will be even harder on them than it will be on us. We leave today to begin our trip back to the US and our busy lives, and prepare for Christmas, to boot. Borya and Julia, on the other hand, will not even have each other, as they will be split into their separate orphanages to go back to the daily routine of school, carrying on as though nothing has changed until the day comes for them to be escorted home.



So now, if you're not all too prayed out, pls send up prayers once again that the two week post-court waiting period will pass without incident so we get our official decree on 12/5. And if you could throw in one tiny little extra prayer? Let it be that we can get our kids home in time for Christmas. Isn't that what it's all about?





************

Read it. Like it? Follow it. Please? Thanks.
(Follow my blog by adding yourself as a follower with Google Friends Connect in my sidebar!)


***********

Don't forget, I will love you forever if you throw me a vote on Top Mommy Blogs. You know the drill by now, don't you? Just click the juggling chick and you've voted. You can vote every day till like, forever.

Top Mommy Blogs - Click To Vote!

Thanks!



*************

Rudeness disclaimer:

I love all your comments,
I read every one!
But I can't hit 'reply',
I've no time for fun.
Please don't judge me,
Please don't hate.
If you have a question that just can't wait,
Send me an email at farmbeachgal@yahoo.com,
And I'll answer right back because I'm, you know, the Mom.





Tuesday, November 20, 2012

TALU Tuesday

It's that time again!

Time for TALU Tuesday.

That's right, the Tuesday Archive Link-Up.

Time to pull your treasured old posts out of those cobwebby archives, dust them off, and give them new life where they will be seen and enjoyed by untold millions OK, thousands of viewers.

See, this link-up is hosted by several people, who, all together have thousands upon thousands of followers. So when you link your post up with this party? Your post will show up on all their blogs, to all of their followers.

All you've got to do is:


1) link up your post using the linky tool below.

2) visit the hosts and leave a comment to say hi.

3) and try to visit three or more of the blogs linked up and leave a comment. They'll all be doing the same, so it's like a giant hippie love fest. Bring your own flowers.







Oh and when you comment? Put in the secret code "TALU" (Tuesday Archive Link-Up) and then give a little wink so we'll all know what you're talking about.

Have fun!



Now here are your TALU hosts, wonderful gals every one....


Jennifer, author of I Am Not Superwoman

Jessica, author of Sugar In My Grits

Anne, author of Life On The Funny Farm

Debbie, author of Wrinkled Mommy









And PS? If you'd like to show off your blog-hoppin' skills to all your followers, just right-click the image above (crying baby) and save it to your desktop. Then just load the image to your sidebar and link it to my blog! Easy peasy....



************

Read it. Like it? Follow it. Please? Thanks.
(Follow my blog by adding yourself as a follower with Google Friends Connect in my sidebar!)


***************************


Don't forget, I will love you forever if you throw me a vote on Top Mommy Blogs. You know the drill by now, don't you? Just click the juggling chick and you've voted. You can vote every day till like, forever.

Top Mommy Blogs - Click To Vote!

Thanks!



***************

Blog Hops I'm following today:

Tuesday:
Heavenly Homemaker's Gratituesday
Crafty Garden Mama's Tuesday Greens
The Wrinkled Mommy's Tuesday Archive Link-Up

You can see my full hoppin' schedule in my sidebar.

Come join the fun!

*************

Rudeness disclaimer:

I love all your comments,
I read every one!
But I can't hit 'reply',
I've no time for fun.
Please don't judge me,
Please don't hate.
If you have a question that just can't wait,
Send me an email at farmbeachgal@yahoo.com,
And I'll answer right back because I'm, you know, the Mom.





Monday, November 19, 2012

Mirth Monday: Bitter Party of Five, episode 3

Question Mark Segment:
Remember my little sister?
Mary Birdsong?
You know, the one who was in Descendants, with none other than Mr. George Clooney?
The one who was in Reno 911?
The one who was in movies with Ashton Kutcher, Patrick Dempsey, Kristen Stewart?
The very girl who's been in episodes of Raising Hope and The Middle?
The one who plays the Mom in the new Disney XD show Crash and Bernstein?
Do you also remember that she's been involved in a web series called Bitter Party of Five?

Exclamation Mark Segment:
Well happy day! There's a new webisode!!!
A webisode with Stephen Root!
Watch it here! Watch it Now!
Laugh uproariously!
Yay!






************

Read it. Like it? Follow it. Please? Thanks.
(Follow my blog by adding yourself as a follower with Google Friends Connect in my sidebar!)


***************************


You guys rock.
My blog had fallen to the 2nd page of TMB.
I asked you to vote, and you did.
I'm back on the 1st page!
Remember you can vote every day, to keep me there.
Just one quick click of this brown button.
One quick click, one quick click, one quick click.
I can say it 3x fast, can you?


Top Mommy Blogs - Click To Vote!

Thanks!



*************

Rudeness disclaimer:

I love all your comments,
I read every one!
But I can't hit 'reply',
I've no time for fun.
Please don't judge me,
Please don't hate.
If you have a question that just can't wait,
Send me an email at farmbeachgal@yahoo.com,
And I'll answer right back because I'm, you know, the Mom.

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Inspiration Sunday

In honor of National Adoption Month....











































Image courtesy: Kathy R. Jeffords
via Pinterest


************


Read it. Like it? Follow it. Please? Thanks.
(Follow my blog by adding yourself as a follower with Google Friends Connect in my sidebar!)


***************************


Don't forget, I will love you forever if you throw me a vote on Top Mommy Blogs. You know the drill by now, don't you? Just click the juggling chick and you've voted. You can vote every day till like, forever.

Top Mommy Blogs - Click To Vote!

Thanks!


***************

In case you didn't know it, I'm like the queen of blog-hoppin' lately. It's kind of like square dancing but without the dated outfits, smelly gym, and elderly caller.

Here's the schedule I keep:
Monday:
Homestead Revival's Barn Hop
Natural Living Mamma's Natural Living Mondays
The Chicken Chick's Clever Chicks
A Cat-Like Curiosity's Monday Mantras
Ponder Wonder's Soul Food Monday
@ Home Take 2's Mom's Monday Mingle
DIY Dreamer's Pinterest Repin Party
DIY Home Sweet Home's More the Merrier Monday
Tuesday:
Heavenly Homemaker's Gratituesday
Crafty Garden Mama's Tuesday Greens
The Wrinkled Mommy's Tuesday Archive Link-Up
Wednesday:
My Life and Kids Finding the Funny
Tilly's Nest's Down Home
Crafty Spices Wordless Wednesday
Thursday:
A Rural Journal's Rural Thursday Blog Hop
Two In Diapers' Mommy Brain Mixer
Friday:
Deborah Jean's Dandelion House's Farmgirl Friday
Fresh Eggs Daily's FarmGirl Friday
Little Becky Homecky's Fantabulous Friday
@Home Take 2's Weekend Blog Walk
Oh So Amelia's Friday Chaos
Saturday:
Camera Critter's Life With Dogs Pet Blogger Hop
Tutus and Tea Parties' Pinteresting Party
Sunday:
Dawn's Disaster's Super Sunday Link


Come join the fun!

*************

Rudeness disclaimer:

I love all your comments,
I read every one!
But I can't hit 'reply',
I've no time for fun.
Please don't judge me,
Please don't hate.
If you have a question that just can't wait,
Send me an email at farmbeachgal@yahoo.com,
And I'll answer right back because I'm, you know, the Mom.





Saturday, November 17, 2012

Chicken-Scratch-Saturday: Advent Stockings

A number of years ago I came across an idea somewhere (Family Fun, maybe?) of a fun way to count down the days till Christmas.

We had done the advent chains, where you start with 24 paper chains and you rip one off each day so the kids (the little ones, especially) can see how many days are left till the big day. Some people write a bible verse on each chain, or an idea of an activity to do, some just leave them blank.

We also do advent calendars, as this is something I remember from my childhood. Somehow, my kids seem to get just as much thrill out of something as simple as looking for the daily number and opening the flap as I did when I was little.

But my favorite Christmas countdown, and it seems to be my kids' favorite as well, is our advent stockings.

















I'm still planning on throwing a length of Christmas greenery along the hooks to dress it up a bit, but you get the idea.


Pretty simple to do, and the kids get soooo excited to find out what's in each stocking.

I just went out and bought 12 pairs of red and white socks from Wal-Mart, but you could do this for free just by using socks from your unmatched socks basket.

What? Doesn't everybody have a basket full of scores of unmatched socks???

Find some wallspace where you can hang this. I happen to have a long mirror with hooks on it that I use, but you can get some of those 3M hooks that come off the wall when you're done. Those things are all kinds of awesome.

Run a string through the holes of 24 clothespins, and mark the clothespins from 24 down to 1, with 24 to the left and 1 all the way at the end on the right.


















Then have some fun figuring out what to fill the stockings with. If you haven't figured it out yet, this works just like an old-fashioned advent calendar: on Dec 1st, your kids get to see what's in the stocking hung by the "24" clothespin. Dec 2nd they open the "23" stocking and so on down the line till they've opened the "1" stocking on Christmas Eve.

The beauty of this is that you can go really cheap or really elaborate, whatever floats your boat (and your budget).

A few ideas along the range of free to pricey:

*print out some Christmas activity pages, such as word-searches, crosswords, coloring pages,
*cut out strips of red and green construction paper and put those in the stocking for the kids to make a Christmas chain,
*cut out a little Christmas tree from green paper and write "Today we find (or decorate) our Christmas tree!",
*put a Christmas cookie cutter in the stocking to let them know today's the day they'll get to help make Christmas cookies,
*put a little baggie of birdseed in the stocking with a note that instructs them how to make peanut-butter-and-birdseed-pinecone-feeders for the birds,
*candy canes,
*Christmas pencils,
*gum,
*Christmassy hair accessories,
*jingle bells and some ribbon for the kids to make necklaces with,
*surprise them with breakfast out on the way to school one day (perhaps you could write it out on a star cut-out),
*cute Christmas socks.

You're only limited by your imagination.

Each day, another sock comes down, so they'll have the visual before them of how many days remain till Christmas.

If you can't trust the kids to not peek (and really, if you can, I don't like you very much), then just fill one at a time before you go on to bed each night.

The kids have been asking me for weeks when we can start the advent stockings.

Maybe I'll need to make advent stockings leading up to the advent stockings.




************

Read it. Like it? Follow it. Please? Thanks.
(Follow my blog by adding yourself as a follower with Google Friends Connect in my sidebar!)


***************************


Don't forget, I will love you forever if you throw me a vote on Top Mommy Blogs. You know the drill by now, don't you? Just click the juggling chick and you've voted. You can vote every day till like, forever.

Top Mommy Blogs - Click To Vote!

Thanks!


***************

In case you didn't know it, I'm like the queen of blog-hoppin' lately. It's kind of like square dancing but without the dated outfits, smelly gym, and elderly caller.

Here's the schedule I keep:
Monday:
Homestead Revival's Barn Hop
Natural Living Mamma's Natural Living Mondays
The Chicken Chick's Clever Chicks
A Cat-Like Curiosity's Monday Mantras
Ponder Wonder's Soul Food Monday
@ Home Take 2's Mom's Monday Mingle
DIY Dreamer's Pinterest Repin Party
DIY Home Sweet Home's More the Merrier Monday
Tuesday:
Heavenly Homemaker's Gratituesday
Crafty Garden Mama's Tuesday Greens
The Wrinkled Mommy's Tuesday Archive Link-Up
Wednesday:
My Life and Kids Finding the Funny
Tilly's Nest's Down Home
Hey Mommy, Chocolate Milk's Mom's Library Link-Up
Crafty Spices Wordless Wednesday
Thursday:
A Rural Journal's Rural Thursday Blog Hop
Two In Diapers' Mommy Brain Mixer
Friday:
Deborah Jean's Dandelion House's Farmgirl Friday
Fresh Eggs Daily's FarmGirl Friday
Little Becky Homecky's Fantabulous Friday
@Home Take 2's Weekend Blog Walk
Oh So Amelia's Friday Chaos
Saturday:
Camera Critter's Life With Dogs Pet Blogger Hop
Tutus and Tea Parties' Pinteresting Party
Sunday:
Dawn's Disaster's Super Sunday Link


Come join the fun!

*************

Rudeness disclaimer:

I love all your comments,
I read every one!
But I can't hit 'reply',
I've no time for fun.
Please don't judge me,
Please don't hate.
If you have a question that just can't wait,
Send me an email at farmbeachgal@yahoo.com,
And I'll answer right back because I'm, you know, the Mom.


Friday, November 16, 2012

Farm Friday: I Lost It. Yes, "It".

Ick. 
At a time when my blog has more followers and more traffic than ever, my Top Mommy Blog votes are dropping. I'm off the first page!  Just a week or so ago I was up to #14! 
If everyone who visits could take one second to click this brown button, it would shoot me straight back up again.
Pretty please? With sugar on top?
Thanks!!

Top Mommy Blogs - Click To Vote!


**********************




I've lost my homesteader virginity.

Some might think I lost it when I got goats.

Nah, that was just makin' out.

Some would say I lost it when I got chickens and started getting eggs.

Uh-uh. That would be more like 2nd base.

But raising chickens for meat?
Taking them to slaughter and then eating them?

Yep. Lost my virginity.



And while I'll admit I had a first-timer's jitters, it went just fine.

I loaded them into a dog crate in the back of the car.

The big boys wanted me to drop them off at the Amish Market on my way to the "chicken drop".

They were none too pleased driving there with a crate of chickens just the other side of their seat.

Ohhh, Mom, really? Do we have to drive there with the chickens?
Why are they making all that noise?
Why do they smell?
Oh my God, now they smell even worse! Did they POOP?
Open the windows!
Ahhhhhh!


Yeah. They just love me....

Anyway, like I said, other than offending the boys' delicate sensibilities, it went fine.

The place I took them to runs a smooth, efficient operation.

Though they process two or three hundred chickens there every Saturday morning, you would never know it from the look or the smell or the sound. It was quiet, it was clean, it was neat. Nothing behind closed doors, either, so you can see every step of the process, if you're so inclined.




So here they are  all buckled in and ready to go.
And I can now add feathers and chicken sh** to the stuff in my car that shouldn't be.



































The drop.































Loaded back into the car for the ride home.
A little quieter. A little less poopy.
























And then I came home, put one in the crockpot, a couple in the fridge, and the rest in the freezer.

And when the first chicken finished cooking and cooling, I pulled the meat off the bones and bagged it. And ate a few morsels.

And ohmygosh, YUM!


Next week I'll give you a breakdown on costs.

So what do you think? Are you proud of me? Disgusted?
Don't be shy, let me know....


************

Read it. Like it? Follow it. Please? Thanks.
(Follow my blog by adding yourself as a follower with Google Friends Connect in my sidebar!)


***************************


Don't forget, I will love you forever if you throw me a vote on Top Mommy Blogs. You know the drill by now, don't you? Just click the juggling chick and you've voted. You can vote every day till like, forever.

Top Mommy Blogs - Click To Vote!

Thanks!



***************

In case you didn't know it, I'm like the queen of blog-hoppin' lately. It's kind of like square dancing but without the dated outfits, smelly gym, and elderly caller.

Here's the schedule I keep:
Monday:
Homestead Revival's Barn Hop
Natural Living Mamma's Natural Living Mondays
The Chicken Chick's Clever Chicks
A Cat-Like Curiosity's Monday Mantras
Ponder Wonder's Soul Food Monday
@ Home Take 2's Mom's Monday Mingle
DIY Dreamer's Pinterest Repin Party
DIY Home Sweet Home's More the Merrier Monday
Tuesday:
Heavenly Homemaker's Gratituesday
Crafty Garden Mama's Tuesday Greens
The Wrinkled Mommy's Tuesday Archive Link-Up
Wednesday:
My Life and Kids Finding the Funny
Tilly's Nest's Down Home
Hey Mommy, Chocolate Milk's Mom's Library Link-Up
Crafty Spices Wordless Wednesday
Thursday:
A Rural Journal's Rural Thursday Blog Hop
Two In Diapers' Mommy Brain Mixer
Friday:
Deborah Jean's Dandelion House's Farmgirl Friday
Fresh Eggs Daily's FarmGirl Friday
Little Becky Homecky's Fantabulous Friday
@Home Take 2's Weekend Blog Walk
Oh So Amelia's Friday Chaos
Saturday:
Camera Critter's Life With Dogs Pet Blogger Hop
Tutus and Tea Parties' Pinteresting Party
Sunday:
Dawn's Disaster's Super Sunday Link


Come join the fun!

*************

Rudeness disclaimer:

I love all your comments,
I read every one!
But I can't hit 'reply',
I've no time for fun.
Please don't judge me,
Please don't hate.
If you have a question that just can't wait,
Send me an email at farmbeachgal@yahoo.com,
And I'll answer right back because I'm, you know, the Mom.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Cancer Sucks

I don't know what else to say about it.

I woke up this morning to the sad news that my cousin was dying of cancer.

The last time I called my cousin,it was to cry incoherently to him over the phone to tell him how sorry I was that they were waiting on his seven year old son to die. Little Max died later that day. Of cancer.

But a few hours later this morning, before I could figure out what number to call and when would be the "best time" to reach out to him to tell him goodbye, I got the call from my aunt that he had passed.

Cancer sucks.

Goodbye Russ. We didn't keep in touch as much as we should have, but I love you and I'll miss you. I know your wife and your two beautiful children will miss you, as will all your family (even us Yankees). Hug Max for me in heaven, and your Dad, and my brother. Give them all my love...

I-Need-Therapy-Thursday: Redeemed

Ick. 
At a time when my blog has more followers and more traffic than ever, my Top Mommy Blog votes are dropping. I'm off the first page!  Just a week or so ago I was up to #14! 
If everyone who visits could take one second to click this brown button, it would shoot me straight back up again.
Pretty please? With sugar on top?
Thanks!!

Top Mommy Blogs - Click To Vote!


**********************



Couple years ago, a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad thing happened.

What was it, you ask?

My daughter Rosie, whose soccer skill rivals that of Hope Solo
(OK, so I'm a little biased, sue me)
got kicked off her soccer team.

I know, I know, this kind of thing happens all the time, right?

Not in a situation like this.

After a try-out in which only the girls on the team came (no new blood), the director of the soccer club cut my daughter from the team.

Cut my daughter after she had played goalie for them for four years.
After she had been named MVP after a tournament.
After she had been requested, by name, to play for other teams at their tournaments.
After she gave them a season with no goals scored against.

So why did they cut her?
They claimed it was strictly based on try-out stats.
But if that's the case, it's a pretty interesting coincidence that the only girls cut from the team (five in all), were daughters of parents who had raised some valid concerns about the new coach.

After the cut, there were phone calls and emails and attendance at board meetings, but all to no avail. The decision was final.

But the girls moved on.
One of them, quite literally, moved on to another state.
Two of these very talented young ladies joined another of the local travel soccer teams, while the other two (my daughter included), joined one of the others.

The last game of the season was played last night. Rosie's team was victorious, shutting out the opposing team 5 - 0, moving them into second place in the division. Those two girls that joined the other team? Their team placed first. So I find it interesting that these four stunning athletes, who were cut to spite the parents, went on to play with the number one and number two soccer teams in the division.

The team they were all cut from?

They finished middle of the pack.

Instant karma, mmmmmm, it's crunchy.

Pardon my French, but White Clay can suck it.

I guess the best revenge is just to do well.

Rock on, Rosie.  You're my hero....





































************

Read it. Like it? Follow it. Please? Thanks.
(Follow my blog by adding yourself as a follower with Google Friends Connect in my sidebar!)


***************************


In case you didn't know it, I'm like the queen of blog-hoppin' lately. It's kind of like square dancing but without the dated outfits, smelly gym, and elderly caller.

Here's the schedule I keep:
Monday:
Homestead Revival's Barn Hop
Natural Living Mamma's Natural Living Mondays
The Chicken Chick's Clever Chicks
A Cat-Like Curiosity's Monday Mantras
Ponder Wonder's Soul Food Monday
@ Home Take 2's Mom's Monday Mingle
DIY Dreamer's Pinterest Repin Party
DIY Home Sweet Home's More the Merrier Monday
Tuesday:
Heavenly Homemaker's Gratituesday
Crafty Garden Mama's Tuesday Greens
The Wrinkled Mommy's Tuesday Archive Link-Up
Wednesday:
My Life and Kids Finding the Funny
Tilly's Nest's Down Home
Crafty Spices Wordless Wednesday
Thursday:
A Rural Journal's Rural Thursday Blog Hop
Two In Diapers' Mommy Brain Mixer
Friday:
Deborah Jean's Dandelion House's Farmgirl Friday
Fresh Eggs Daily's FarmGirl Friday
Little Becky Homecky's Fantabulous Friday
@Home Take 2's Weekend Blog Walk
Oh So Amelia's Friday Chaos
Saturday:
Camera Critter's Life With Dogs Pet Blogger Hop
Tutus and Tea Parties' Pinteresting Party
Sunday:
Dawn's Disaster's Super Sunday Link


Come join the fun!

*************

Rudeness disclaimer:

I love all your comments,
I read every one!
But I can't hit 'reply',
I've no time for fun.
Please don't judge me,
Please don't hate.
If you have a question that just can't wait,
Send me an email at farmbeachgal@yahoo.com,
And I'll answer right back because I'm, you know, the Mom.





Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Wordless Wednesday


November is National Adoption Month!

Here are a few pictures from our time in Kazakhstan four years ago....












































************

Read it. Like it? Follow it. Please? Thanks.
(Follow my blog by adding yourself as a follower with Google Friends Connect in my sidebar!)


***************************


Don't forget, I will love you forever if you throw me a vote on Top Mommy Blogs. You know the drill by now, don't you? Just click the juggling chick and you've voted. You can vote every day till like, forever.

Top Mommy Blogs - Click To Vote!

Thanks!

***************

In case you didn't know it, I'm like the queen of blog-hoppin' lately. It's kind of like square dancing but without the dated outfits, smelly gym, and elderly caller.

Here's the schedule I keep:
Monday:
Homestead Revival's Barn Hop
Natural Living Mamma's Natural Living Mondays
The Chicken Chick's Clever Chicks
A Cat-Like Curiosity's Monday Mantras
Ponder Wonder's Soul Food Monday
@ Home Take 2's Mom's Monday Mingle
DIY Dreamer's Pinterest Repin Party
DIY Home Sweet Home's More the Merrier Monday
Tuesday:
Heavenly Homemaker's Gratituesday
Crafty Garden Mama's Tuesday Greens
The Wrinkled Mommy's Tuesday Archive Link-Up
Wednesday:
My Life and Kids Finding the Funny
Tilly's Nest's Down Home
Crafty Spices Wordless Wednesday
Thursday:
A Rural Journal's Rural Thursday Blog Hop
Two In Diapers' Mommy Brain Mixer
Friday:
Deborah Jean's Dandelion House's Farmgirl Friday
Fresh Eggs Daily's FarmGirl Friday
Little Becky Homecky's Fantabulous Friday
@Home Take 2's Weekend Blog Walk
Oh So Amelia's Friday Chaos
Saturday:
Camera Critter's Life With Dogs Pet Blogger Hop
Tutus and Tea Parties' Pinteresting Party
Sunday:
Dawn's Disaster's Super Sunday Link


Come join the fun!

*************

Rudeness disclaimer:

I love all your comments,
I read every one!
But I can't hit 'reply',
I've no time for fun.
Please don't judge me,
Please don't hate.
If you have a question that just can't wait,
Send me an email at farmbeachgal@yahoo.com,
And I'll answer right back because I'm, you know, the Mom.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

TALU Tuesday

It's that time again!

Time for TALU Tuesday.

That's right, the Tuesday Archive Link-Up.

Time to pull your treasured old posts out of those cobwebby archives, dust them off, and give them new life where they will be seen and enjoyed by untold millions OK, thousands of viewers.

See, this link-up is hosted by several people, who, all together have thousands upon thousands of followers. So when you link your post up with this party? Your post will show up on all their blogs, to all of their followers.

All you've got to do is:


1) link up your post using the linky tool below.

2) visit the hosts and leave a comment to say hi.

3) and try to visit three or more of the blogs linked up and leave a comment. They'll all be doing the same, so it's like a giant hippie love fest. Bring your own flowers.







Oh and when you comment? Put in the secret code "TALU" (Tuesday Archive Link-Up) and then give a little wink so we'll all know what you're talking about.

Have fun!






Now here are your TALU hosts, wonderful gals every one....


Jennifer, author of I Am Not Superwoman

Jessica, author of Sugar In My Grits

Anne, author of Life On The Funny Farm

Debbie, author of Wrinkled Mommy








And PS? If you'd like to show off your blog-hoppin' skills to all your followers, just right-click the image above (crying baby) and save it to your desktop. Then just load the image to your sidebar and link it to my blog! Easy peasy....


************

Read it. Like it? Follow it. Please? Thanks.
(Follow my blog by adding yourself as a follower with Google Friends Connect in my sidebar!)


***************************


Don't forget, I will love you forever if you throw me a vote on Top Mommy Blogs. You know the drill by now, don't you? Just click the juggling chick and you've voted. You can vote every day till like, forever.

Top Mommy Blogs - Click To Vote!

Thanks!



***************

In case you didn't know it, I'm like the queen of blog-hoppin' lately. It's kind of like square dancing but without the dated outfits, smelly gym, and elderly caller.

Here's the schedule I keep:
Monday:
Homestead Revival's Barn Hop
Natural Living Mamma's Natural Living Mondays
The Chicken Chick's Clever Chicks
A Cat-Like Curiosity's Monday Mantras
Ponder Wonder's Soul Food Monday
@ Home Take 2's Mom's Monday Mingle
DIY Dreamer's Pinterest Repin Party
DIY Home Sweet Home's More the Merrier Monday
Tuesday:
Heavenly Homemaker's Gratituesday
Crafty Garden Mama's Tuesday Greens
The Wrinkled Mommy's Tuesday Archive Link-Up
Wednesday:
My Life and Kids Finding the Funny
Tilly's Nest's Down Home
Crafty Spices Wordless Wednesday
Thursday:
A Rural Journal's Rural Thursday Blog Hop
Two In Diapers' Mommy Brain Mixer
Friday:
Deborah Jean's Dandelion House's Farmgirl Friday
Fresh Eggs Daily's FarmGirl Friday
Little Becky Homecky's Fantabulous Friday
@Home Take 2's Weekend Blog Walk
Oh So Amelia's Friday Chaos
Saturday:
Camera Critter's Life With Dogs Pet Blogger Hop
Tutus and Tea Parties' Pinteresting Party
Sunday:
Dawn's Disaster's Super Sunday Link


Come join the fun!




****************

Rudeness disclaimer:

I love all your comments,
I read every one!
But I can't hit 'reply',
I've no time for fun.
Please don't judge me,
Please don't hate.
If you have a question that just can't wait,
Send me an email at farmbeachgal@yahoo.com,
And I'll answer right back because I'm, you know, the Mom.

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