I am always surprised that even when it’s been an embarrassing long time since I’ve blogged that I’ve continued to have readers.  Thank you so much!!!!

Life on the farm has continued to prove busy as usual.  We have been putting the garden to bed.  The flowers are still blooming and hopefully the sunflowers will open soon.  We’ve made salsa with almost every ingredient from our garden which was so exciting!  We hope to make ketchup and pizza sauce and spaghetti sauce in the next few weeks as well.  Our gourds and pumpkins are everywhere and certainly happy to see the rain fall yesterday.  We had so many blackberries this year!  I hated keeping the chickens in their outdoor run for 2 months but it was so lovely to have picking blackberries as part of our summer evening ritual.  Even my nieces and nephews would pick just the black ones and carry them around like treasures to take home to mom.  I had enough for yummy pies and a new recipe called Blackberry Clafouti.  I plan on making jam with the rest.

This tastes as good as it looks!  I scored some mini cast iron pans at the flea market to make them in!

This tastes as good as it looks! I scored some mini cast iron pans at the flea market to make them in!

The chickens are happy to be out and about the farm again.  They certainly are fun to watch.  It is so much more fulfilling to watch your animals enjoying life on the farm than just feeding them every day.  One of the reasons I love the farm is the idyllic part of watching the animals graze and taking in this pastoral setting.

This week we are saying good bye to our two cows we bottle fed last February.  We plan on filling our freezer with them.  Even the boys have always known their fate and I have thought it would be hard to do this.  Since we are taking them to a butcher that helps but I can honestly say I am not as sad as I thought I would be.  I appreciate them.  Even though they run in from the field when I come to feed them they are much too big to cuddle on now.  And it has been a worry all summer if they are being fed enough and constantly having to get more hay.  With hardly any rain the pasture has been hardly producing what they need.

I love this apron I got from my great grandma this week.  Family treasures are priceless.

I love this apron I got from my great grandma this week. Family treasures are priceless.

The boys are growing fast and in school now.  I can’t seem to shake the urgency with my job as their parent.  They are growing so fast!!!  There is so much I want to teach them and so precious little opportunity.  I am so thankful that my husband and I agree and enjoy spending time with the boys doing just that.  Although we are a family that loves technology we have really stepped back from it.  We try to be more and more present and finding ways for teachable moments.  The boys think it’s torture when I make them read for 30 minutes a day but when they want to stay up and read one more page I’m so glad I made them pick up a book.  I’ll be glad when the younger ones start reading chapter books.  Watching them wrestle in the pool and enjoy their siblings is probably my favorite thing to do.  I hope that I can teach them to always appreciate each other.  Nature has continued to be our biggest playground.  Despite the heat my boys love nothing more than to practice archery, climb trees, discover bugs, dig in the dirt…..I hope that never changes.

We love discovering new places like this newly dedicated Civil War site.

We love discovering new places like this newly dedicated Civil War site.

The boys are loving the french lessons we have been taking.  It is much easier for them!  I have to really study and they just go around the house speaking french!  I love it!!!  I love the history we are learning.  I had forgotten how young our own country really is.  Since we are very concerned about the food we take in our bodies (yes we love junk food which is why we are concerned haha!) I have started reading “French Kids Eat Everything.”  So far I love it!  I always knew I should have been born in France!!!  I am also reading “Raising a Modern Day Knight.

My conclusion as I’ve been reading all of these parenting books all summer and constantly on the hunt for more (suggestions?) is that TIME FLIES! Yes, I spend too much time on the phone, on Pinterest, working, you name it!  Yes, I have to do some of these things and need to have “me time” too; but in between…..in the car…..while I’m doing housework or cooking dinner….I need to be teaching my kids.  Even teaching them the physical things I’m doing about driving a car, cooking, laundry; whatever it is.  But also using that time to talk.  What’s going on at school?  What did you see on tv that you have questions about?  Kids CRAVE time with their parents and it’s MY job to teach them so very very much.  I don’t mean sitting them down for lessons after they get home from school. Nothing pressured like that.  Just making sure our busy lives include each other and spending time with them and talking as we go.  I remember praying for God to make me a mother and I had no idea what that would entail aside from snuggling newborns.  It’s a much harder job than I imagined.  But I am oh so thankful.

I hope friends you are enjoying this last long weekend of summer.  I pray that you are blessed in all that you do!!!

Comments are welcome!