Thursday, January 24, 2008

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Donna's Crockpot Rice Pudding

grease crockpot with butter.
beat with mixer:
2c. scalded milk
3 eggs
2/3 c. sugar( I use sucanet)
2t. vanilla

stir in 1.5 c of cooked rice(I only use brown rice)
pour in crock pot and sprinkle with cinnamon or nutmeg
cook on high 30 mins.
cook on low 2-3 hrs.
while it cooks the pudding has a tendency to separate ie the custard rises to the top. Therefore,
I will like to stir the pudding once toward the end of cooking also. Altho, some people may like the custard on the top and prefer not to stir

Delicious for dessert or for breakfast

The importance of Salt to the Body

Vital Functions of Salt in the Body
1. Salt is most effective in stabilizing irregular heartbeats and, Contrary to the misconception that it causes high blood pressure, it is actually essential for the regulation of blood pressure - in conjunction with water. Naturally the proportions are critical.

2. Salt is vital to the extraction of excess acidity from the cells in the body, particularly the brain cells.

3. Salt is vital for balancing the sugar levels in the blood; a needed element in diabetics.

4. Salt is vital for the generation of hydroelectric energy in cells in the body. It is used for local power generation at the sites of energy need by the cells.

5. Salt is vital to the nerve cells' communication and information processing all the time that the brain cells work, from the moment of conception to death.

6. Salt is vital for absorption of food particles through the intestinal tract.

7. Salt is vital for the clearance of the lungs of mucus plugs and sticky phlegm, particularly in asthma and cystic fibrosis.

8. Salt is vital for clearing up catarrh and congestion of the sinuses.

9. Salt is a strong natural antihistamine.

10. Salt is essential for the prevention of muscle cramps.

11. Salt is vital to prevent excess saliva production to the point that it flows out of the mouth during sleep. Needing to constantly mop up excess saliva indicates salt shortage.

12. Salt is absolutely vital to making the structure of bones firm. Osteoporosis, in a major way, is a result of salt and water shortage in the body.

13. Salt is vital for sleep regulation. It is a natural hypnotic.

14. Salt is a vitally needed element in the treatment of diabetics.

15. Salt on the tongue will stop persistent dry coughs.

16. Salt is vital for the prevention of gout and gouty arthritis.

17. Salt is vital for maintaining sexuality and libido.

18. Salt is vital for preventing varicose veins and spider veins on the legs and thighs.

19. Salt is vital to the communication and information processing nerve cells the entire time that the brain cells work - from the moment of conception to death.

20. Salt is vital for reducing a double chin. When the body is short of salt, it means the body really is short of water. The salivary glands sense the salt shortage and are obliged to produce more saliva to lubricate the act of chewing and swallowing and also to supply the stomach with water that it needs for breaking down foods. Circulation to the salivary glands increases and the blood vessels become "leaky" in order to supply the glands with water to manufacture saliva. The "leakiness" spills beyond the area of the glands themselves, causing increased bulk under the skin of the chin, the cheeks and into the neck.

21. Sea salt contains about 80 mineral elements that the body needs. Some of these elements are needed in trace amounts. Unrefined sea salt is a better choice of salt than other types of salt on the market. Ordinary table salt that is bought in the super markets has been stripped of its companion elements and contains additive elements such as aluminum silicate to keep it powdery and porous. Aluminum is a very toxic element in our nervous system. It is implicated as one of the primary causes of Alzheimer's disease.

22. Twenty-seven percent of the body's salt is in the bones. Osteoporosis results when the body needs more salt and takes it from the body. Bones are twenty-two percent water. Is it not obvious what happens to the bones when we're deficient in salt or water or both.* The information on salt intake is taken from Dr. Batmanghelidj's book, "Water: Rx for a Healthier Pain-Free Life".

"80 Elements dicovered in Sea Water

People who eat Refined salt develop craving for salt, because, salt that they eat is not satisfying their needs. Than they use more and more salt, in the desperate try to get what they need. Taking big amounts of refined salt (chemical) burden kidneys and adrenal glands that are very important for calcium utilization. Modern physiology has demonstrated that an excess of salt interferes with the absorption of nutrients and depletes calcium, while if used in a moderate doses, salt enhances calcium absorption and nutrient utilization in general.
It is known that absorption of calcium depends on the health of the kidney-adrenal function and that calcium metabolism is of essential importance for the health of the nerves, muscles, heart, vascular system, and bones. Simply. the whole body is dependant on Calcium uptake.
Low-Salt Diet a Risk?
London, March 12 - A low-salt diet may not be so healthy after all. Defying a generation of health advice, a controversial new study concludes that the less salt people eat, the higher their risk of untimely death. The study, led by Dr. Michael Alderman, chairman of epidemiology at Albert Einstein School; of Medicine in New York and president of the American Society of Hypertension, suggests the government should consider suspending it's recommendation that people restrict the amount of salt they eat."The lower the sodium, the worse off you are," Alderman said. "There's an association. Is it the cause? I don't know. Any way you slice it, that's not an argument for eating a low sodium diet.
Natural salt is not white and it is not dry. It is a little gray with minerals and feels damp or clumps in humidity. It must be labeled UNREFINED, NO ADDITIVES ADDED."

Monday, January 21, 2008

Quotes from Martin Luther King Jr.

If a man is called to be a streetsweeper, he should sweep streets even as Michelangelo painted, or Beethoven composed music, or Shakespeare wrote poetry. He should sweep streets so well that all the host of heaven and earth will pause to say, here lived a great streetsweeper who did his job well.

There is nothing more dangerous than to build a society, with a large segment of people in that society, who feel that they have no stake in it; who feel that they have nothing to lose. People who have a stake in their society, protect that society, but when they don't have it, they unconsciously want to destroy it.

A nation that continues year after year to spend more money on military defense than on programs of social uplift is approaching spiritual doom.

All labor that uplifts humanity has dignity and importance and should be undertaken with painstaking excellence.

Almost always, the creative dedicated minority has made the world better.

An individual has not started living until he can rise above the narrow confines of his individualistic concerns to the broader concerns of all humanity.

Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.

Faith is taking the first step even when you don't see the whole staircase.

He who passively accepts evil is as much involved in it as he who helps to perpetrate it. He who accepts evil without protesting against it is really cooperating with it.

I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character.

I have a dream that one day every valley shall be exalted, every hill and mountain shall be made low, the rough places will be made straight and the glory of the Lord shall be revealed and all flesh shall see it together.

I have a dream that one day on the red hills of Georgia the sons of former slaves and the sons of former slave owners will be able to sit down together at the table of brotherhood.

I just want to do God's will. And he's allowed me to go to the mountain. And I've looked over, and I've seen the promised land! I may not get there with you, but I want you to know tonight that we as a people will get to the promised land.

I want to be the white man's brother, not his brother-in-law.

If we are to go forward, we must go back and rediscover those precious values - that all reality hinges on moral foundations and that all reality has spiritual control.

Life's most persistent and urgent question is, 'What are you doing for others?'

Means we use must be as pure as the ends we seek.

Nothing in all the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity.

Property is intended to serve life, and no matter how much we surround it with rights and respect, it has no personal being. It is part of the earth man walks on. It is not man.

Science investigates religion interprets. Science gives man knowledge which is power religion gives man wisdom which is control.

Seeing is not always believing.

The first question which the priest and the Levite asked was: "If I stop to help this man, what will happen to me?" But... the good Samaritan reversed the question: "If I do not stop to help this man, what will happen to him?"

The function of education is to teach one to think intensively and to think critically. Intelligence plus character - that is the goal of true education.

The hope of a secure and livable world lies with disciplined nonconformists who are dedicated to justice, peace and brotherhood.

there can be no deep disappointment where there is not deep love.

To be a Christian without prayer is no more possible than to be alive without breathing.

War is a poor chisel to carve out tomorrow.

We are not makers of history. We are made by history.

We have guided missiles and misguided men.

We may have all come on different ships, but we're in the same boat now.

Sunday, January 13, 2008

ode to a new car.....

a truck and trailer came and towed away a few old cars that have been sitting on the back 40, bringing shelter to many a skunk and woodchuck for quite a time now. The rotting cars were a thorn in my side for many years, but you who know Michael know that he is never in too big of a hurry to get rid of anything. (one never knows when they might need a part from that vehicle that was just towed away!) And of course,
every *real* redneck property needs a few dead cars parked out back...
But, Mike met someone in town yesterday morning who promised him $75 per vehicle he towed for scrap metal and Mike couldnt resist making a couple extra bucks while at the same time scoring extra points with wifey here.
So they came in yesterday afternoon and took Lacys first car plus the 1986 chevy Cavalier that sat out back.
To load the vehicles on the back of the long trailer the scrap metal guys also brought a Bobcat that kind of speared the cars and lifted and pushed them onto the back of the trailer. Along with this excessive force in loading, came some smashed windows and ripped chrome and new big dents.
The children stood with noses pressed up against the glass, watching the process in amazement. Rarely does such excitement occur outside these windows!
As I walked into the kitchen I saw out my bay window the truck and trailer parked with the two battered cars, ready to go down the road to the junk yard, to be smashed for scrap metal. Looking at my chevy station wagon ready to be hauled away brought a surprising melancholy moment for me. After all, that was the first and only car that Michael and I ever purchased brand new off a lot. We ordered it and hand picked the colors and options. I remembered the feeling of excitement when the dealership called us and told us our car was in. The feeling of pride when he handed us the keys of our spanking new shiny car. The *smell* of a new car was intoxicatingly exciting. We hadnt told ANYONE about our ordering the new vehicle but instead drove straight from the car lot when it arrived over to my parents house to show off our new prize with pride. Oh, how we beamed with joy and excitement as we then drove to Mikes parents house and sat in the driveway honking the horn until they walked out to see who was there in "the fancy new car" . I remember my father in law asking us "did you come into some money?" when he came out. No, we didnt , actually the opposite, because in spite of the joy of new car ownership the prize had to be paid for through monthly car payments. For 4 years that $150 a month was a huge burden for this young family of five. We couldnt afford the payments on our one income and that is when I went to work at Tobies as a waitperson to make those big, at the time to us, payments. I find it a bit hard to justify, in hindsight, that leaving my children to work to pay for a new car was worth the short time in my childrens lives. Alas,
no sense feeling guilt. We do the best we can at the time with what we have to work with, you know?
Then, as I looked at the car, I also remembered how fleeting those days of excitement over the "brand new car" were. Soon, like all new cars, it lost the new smell, lost the new appeal, needed mechanical work and computer work, and rusted quickly (as we still paid the $150 amonth car payment)
And then,
the trailer drove away out of my life, never be seen again.
good-bye to you, '86 burgandy cavalier, you will always have a place in my heart of life memories

Baking soda is my friend.......

I buy baking soda by 50lb bags and use it for multiple cleaning uses around this house;
I use baking soda instead of cleanser for cleaning sinks, tubs and counters.
here is a recipe for making your own dishwashing detergent:
Mix and use per dishwasher load:
1 Tablespoon Borax
1 Tablespoon Baking soda
Mix equal parts Borax and Baking Soda, and add 2Tablespoons per load.
Increase proportion of soda for hard water. Use vinegar in the rinse cycle for sparkling glass.
I use baking soda instead of detergent for our laundry. I use about 1/2 ro 3/4 cup of bs per load of laundry. For grease stains on shirts I pretreat the spot with a natural laundry spray or dish detergent. I wash all our clothes in cold water to save energy and everything comes out clean without detergent.
Even Shilohs diapers come out clean after being washed in baking soda and hot water.
I use baking soda instead of shampoo. I take approximately 1/8 a cup of bs in a cup and mix it with water in the shower to make a thin paste. Then I massage the bs into my hair and rinse. Next I put about 5 drops of lemon essential oil into my hand and massage through my hair and rinse lightly. My hair stays soft, shiney and healthy using this solution for hair cleansing. An added plus is that the lemon essential oil keeps the deer flies from buzzing around my head in the summer if I work in my garden soon after washing my hair!
I use a mixture of 3 parts baking soda and 1 part celtic sea salt, mixed together, in place of toothpaste. I mix a spoon of this mixture in my hand into a glob of aloe vera gel and then brush.
I got this recipe from a naturalpathic dentist. (
Since I have been using this mixture my teeth are about 5 shades whiter and my gums are perfectly healthy and pink.
(read about the dangers of flouride:
If anyone else has any other recipes and/or uses for baking soda please email me as I am always looking for ways to make my own cleaning products to save money and be less of a consumer, stay healthy and be as gentle on the environment as possible

Tuesday, January 8, 2008

if the world was a village of a hundred people

If the world was a village of 100 people..
- 80 people would live in substandard housing
- 25 people would have a bed, a roof and refrigerator for food
- 50 people are either malnourished or undernourished
- 17 people have no safe, clean water to drink
- 41 people live without basic sanitation
- 25 people have to live on $1.00 or less a day
- 47 people have to live on $2.00 or less a day
- 30 people have a bank account
- 6 people own 59% of the world's wealth.

Larahs mama-mia pizza crust

basic recipe:
1 T. yeast
1 c. warm water
1 T. sugar (I use sucanet)
1t. salt
1/2 italian seasoning
1/2 t. garlic
2T. oil (I use coconut oil)
2.5-3 c. flour (I use fresh ground flour. I grind the milling wheat on a setting that is a bit finer than medium. Now if you use white flour this is not necessary, but I add 1T. of gluten flour/dough enhancer to the recipe w/ my freshly ground flour to make it "spongier)

I use my bosch for mixing, but this recipe can also be kneaded by hand.
First put the warm water,yeast and sugar into mixing bowl and let it proof (ie bubble) for about 5 mins. Then add the oil, salt, spices, and salt. Add about half the flour (and dough enhancer if applicable). I knead w/ my bosch , adding flour until the dough pulls away from the side and feels right ie not sticky, not dry. Remember, a *dry* dough will make a dry crust, so you want it just to the point of moist but not sticky. Knead for about 10 mins if kneading by hand or for a minute or two if using a bosch mixer. Let dough rest about 10 minutes. Then roll out using cornmeal on your rolling surface. Put on pizza stone, top as desired , and cook pizza for about 10 minutes in a 425 preheated hot oven.
I double this recipe and it is enough crust for 3 large pizza stones


Monday, January 7, 2008

Burts Bee's goes Clorox

Can Burt's Bees Turn Clorox Green?
By LOUISE STORY The New York Times, January 6, 2008 Straight to the Source
In the summer of 1984, Burt Shavitz, a beekeeper in Maine, picked up Roxanne Quimby, a 33-year-old single mother down on her luck, as she hitchhiked to the post office in Dexter, Me. More than a dozen years Ms. Quimby's senior, the guy locals called "the bee-man" sold honey in pickle jars from the back of his pickup truck. To Ms. Quimby, he seemed to be living an idyllic life in the wilderness (including making his home inside a small turkey coop).She offered to help Mr. Shavitz tend to his beehives. The two became lovers and eventually birthed Burt's Bees, a niche company famous for beeswax lip balm, lotions, soaps and shampoos, as well as for its homespun packaging and feel-good, eco-friendly marketing. The bearded man whose image is used to peddle the products is modeled after Mr. Shavitz.Today, the couple's quirky enterprise is owned by the Clorox Company, a consumer products giant best known for making bleach, which bought it for $913 million in November. Clorox plans to turn Burt's Bees into a mainstream American brand sold in big-box stores like Wal-Mart. Along the way, Clorox executives say, they plan to learn from unusual business practices at Burt's Bees - many centered on environmental sustainability. Clorox, the company promises, is going green.But not even Clorox can sanitize the details of a fallout between Mr. Shavitz and Ms. Quimby that began in the late 1990s - when Ms. Quimby managed to buy out the bee-man for a low, six-figure sum. She has been paid more than $300 million for her stake in Burt's Bees, and she spends her time traveling, refurbishing fancy homes in Florida and preserving large tracts of land in Maine. Burt himself, now 72, makes his home again in the converted turkey coop - expanded but without running water or electricity - but with $4 million or so to his name.As unlikely as their journeys have been, Ms. Quimby and Mr. Shavitz are pioneers in an entrepreneurial movement that has lately won the affection of corporate behemoths.Full Story:

Heirloom Seeds

The loss of genetic seed diversity facing us today may lead to a catastrophe far beyond our imagining. The Irish potato famine, which led to the death or displacement of two and a half million people in the 1840s, is an example of what can happen when farmers rely on only a few plant species as crop cornerstones.
SIMPLE SOLUTION: One blight wiped out the single potato type that came from deep in the Andes mountains; it did not have the necessary resistance. If the Irish had planted different varieties of potatoes, one type would have most likely resisted the blight.
We can help save heirloom seeds by learning how to buy and save these genetically diverse jewels ourselves.
* One kind of seed, called First generation hybrids (F1 hybrids), have been hand-pollinated, and are patented, often sterile, genetically identical within food types, and sold from multi-national seed companies.
* A second kind of seeds are genetically engineered. Bioengineered seeds are fast contaminating the global seed supply on a wholesale level, and threatening the purity of seeds everywhere. The DNA of the plant has been changed. A cold water fish gene could be spliced into a tomato to make the plant more resistant to frost, for example.
* A third kind of seeds are called heirloom or open-pollinated, genetically diverse jewels that have been passed on from generation to generation.
With heirloom seeds there are 10,000 varieties of apples, compared to the very few F1 hyprid apple types.
The Mayan word 'gene' means "spiral of life." The genes in heirloom seeds give life to our future. Unless the 100 million backyard gardeners and organic farmers keep these seeds alive, they will disappear altogether. This is truly an instance where one person --a lone gardener in a backyard vegetable garden--can potentially make all the difference in the world.
One tip I have come across is to buy heirloom seeds from a dealer of heirloom seeds near your area. Before our current period, vegetable seed companies were smaller and often grew their own seed, which was regionally adapted to the climate of the area in which the company was located. In fact, many seedsmen started out as market gardeners and simply moved into selling seed they had saved for their own use. As their businesses developed, they collected choice varieties from other gardeners—who had selected their own favorite strains—and by close attention maintained them as distinct varieties. Unlike modern vegetable introductions, all of which are deliberately developed for sale, these heirloom varieties were simply selected over generations according to the whims and preferences of individual gardeners. Thus, most are strongly adapted to a particular region of the country, and have an incredible range of qualities—in taste, texture, appearance, and disease or pest resistance—all of which were, for one reason or another, important to their backyard developers.
here are a few resources to check out for heairloom seeds:
Heirloom Seeds
Rare Seed Catalog (Baker Creek Heirloom Seeds)
Seed Savers
Seeds Trust
Seeds of Change
Victory Seeds (open pollinated and heirloom seeds)
and here is a list of seed sellers state by state to research:

Saturday, January 5, 2008

To my son and his son and so on......

Long ago you came to me, a miracle of firsts
First smiles and teeth and baby steps, a sunbeam on the burst
But one day you will move away and leave to me your past,
And I will be left thinking of a lifetime of your lasts.

The last time that I help a bottle to your baby lips...
Last time that I lifted you and help you on my hip...
Last time when you had a binky stuck inside your mouth...
The last time that you crawled across the floor of the old house.

Last time when you ran to me, still small enough to hold,
Last time when you said you'd marry me when you grew old,
Precious, simple moments and bright flashes from the past,
Would I have held you longer if I'd known they were your last?

Your last few hours of kindergarten, last days of first grade...
Last at bat in Little League, last colored paper made.
Last time that I tucked you in for one last midday nap...
Last time when you wore your beat-up Vikings cap.

Last time that you caught a frog in the old backyard pond
Last time when you ran barefoot across out fresh-cut lawn
Silly scattered images to represent your past.
Would I have taken pictures....if I'd known they were your last?

The last dark night you slipped in bed and slept between us two,
When last I read to you of God or Horton Hears a Who.
Last time that I smelled your hair and prayed after your shower
Last time that we did your math during homeschool hours.

The last time you were M.J. In our games of five-and-go
Last time that you made an angel in the melting snow
I never even said good-bye to yesterdays long passed.
Would I have marked the moments....if I'd known they were your last.

Last karate lessons, and last football that you kicked
The last few weeks of middle school, last flowers that you picked.
Last time that you needed me for rides from here to there
The last time that you spent the night with that old teddy bear.

Last time that I helped you with a math or spelling test,
Last time when I shouted that you room was still a mess.
Time and life moved quicker, taking pieces of your past
Would I have stretched the moments...if I'd know that they were the last?

The last time that you needed help with the details of a dance
Last time that you asked me for advice about romance.
Last time that you talked to me about your hopes and dreams.
Last time that you wore a jersey for your high school team.

I watched you grow and never noticed seasons as they passed.
I wish I could've frozen time, to hold on to your lasts.
For come tomorrow morning life will never be the same.
You'll pledge forever to your girl, and she will take your name.

And I will watch you knowing God has blessed you with this day.
I never would have wanted, son, to somehow make you stay.
They say a son's a son until he takes for him a wife.
You're grown-up now; it's time to go and start your brand-new life.

One last hug, one last good-bye, one quick and hurried kiss...
One last time to understand just how much you'll be missed.
I'll watch you leave and think how quickly childhood sped past.
Would I have held on longer.....if I'd known it was your last?
~Karen Kinsbury~

Friday, January 4, 2008

downtown Port Au Prince , Haiti

You rose into my life like a promised sunrise,
brightening my days
with the light in your eyes.
I've never been so strong. Now I am where I belong.
Maya Angelou

an adoption testimony

I am the mother of 11,
two came to me thru God thru international adoption.
We did much that the experts advised against when it came to adding to our family thru adoption. We adopted out of birth order and we adopted two unrelated children at once. Plus, our children were not newborns when they came home, they were 1.5 and pushing 5.
Our adjustment was hard.
Aside from the physical maladies our children came home with, malnourishment, parasites, giardia etc
they both came carrying a lot of emotional baggage.
Our sweet daughter, who was 4 yrs 8 months,
absolutely HATED me. She figured she was JUST FINE in Haiti. The orphanage life was all she knew. Haiti was all she knew.
Here I came and took her away from all that was familiar,
this white Amercian stranger,
and I took her to a whole new world, where people looked different, spoke a different language and her whole like was turned upside down.
She was EXTREMELY rebellious and defiant at first. She fought me emotionally and physically. She ran away from me, she tried so hard to press my buttons and do everything she possibly could to test me, temper tantrums were constant.
The 1 and a half yr old was broken and scared to death. He just clung to me and wouldnt let me go, but when I tried to love him he would scream and push me away. He was emotionally,
more like a 6 month old in many ways. He didnt know how to walk yet when he came home. He was very sick physically with parasites and giardia. He was totally afraid of caucasion people and thrust into a world were that is all he had. He was confused and grieving.
Our first 3 months were really touch and go. It was hard on me, my solid marriage and my whole family. I often prayed "Lord, what have we done???!"
The next 3 months were also hard. I just wanted everything to get back to normal. Around this time we went on a family camping trip. It was probably the hardest thing I ever did. The children totally broke down and this was the moment that I was at the end of my rope,
crying out
"I can NOT do this!!!"
But after that weekend it got easier. Little by little, landmark by landmark, milestone by milestone. We started to grow together as a family and fall in love and bond. Never was our adjustment all rosy and easy. never. But, when has God ever asked me to do anything easy for Him?
Now, years later, these children are as much mine as those that grew in my womb. We have been through so much together and we love, trust and respect each other. My now 9 yr old dd is such a help to me. She would do absolutely anything for me, her beloved mama. She is such a highly intelligent, sensitive and special human. Our 6 yr old son is the most affectionate, cuddly and intellegent boy around. He commands attention where ever he goes with his huge smile. People are just drawn to him .
I look at my two children and can not imagine this family wwithout them. Our 8 yr old bio son does not remember life before them. He and his 9yr old sister are as close as twins.
I look at them and know beyond a shadow of a doubt that my daughter would not be alive today if she were not brought out of Haiti (she was so severely malnourished and close to death when brought to the missionary).
My son would either have died from childhood sicknesses,
or if he were still alive he wouldnt be the vibrant happy go lucky guy I know. He was so starving for love and neglected when he came to me.
These children are wonderful special gifts to this family. And they have an important purpose on earth. God obviously has a special plan for them to spare them from almost cetain death in the country of their birth. What an honor for this family to see what God has planned for them! What an honor to be used by God and to be a part of that plan.
In my way of looking at it,
adopting these hurt little human souls is something that I, as a Christian,
am commanded to do.
I liken my children to the beaten man, left on the side of the road to die by the thieves in the parable of the good Samaritan.
Children are left to die all over the world on a daily basis. I have heard stories from the missionary in Haiti that we adopted from, and from a missionary friend who lives in China
of having to literally step over dead babies in the street gutters in those countries. The missionary we adopted from has also found babies near death in garbage piles. Some she was able to save, others have died in her hands. I know these same stories are repeated all over the world and missionaries in Africa and other countries also deal with these types of tragedies all the time.
Sure it is easy in our rich country,
with our blessed lives to just not pay any attention to this. We need to stop turning our backs,
or thinking that we are too small to do anything to help. If each of us does one small thing to try and change the world our many small acts WILL make a difference. Granted,
I cant save the world,
but if I can help one child than I made a difference.
This isnt about *me* or about whether or not this was difficult or pleasant or all rosy and happy. This is about life and death.
We who are able must protect the meek.

Lia when she was first home

good-night mush recipe

I love to make crock pot oatmeal at least 3 days a week. I just throw the ingredients in the crock pot at night before bed and wake up in the morning to a hot breakfast ready for the children.
The basic recipe is just 1 cup of old fashioned oats to 3 cups of water. First I grease the crockpot with my healthy coconut oil,
then add the water and oats. Then I add a couple tablespoons of sucanet(raw sugar) and either a small handfull of frozen fruit (blueberries, raspberries or strawberries) or half a grated apple. Put the lid on and cook on low all night.
Wake in the morning and ~voila~ hot breakfast. I generally serve it in a bowl with a couple heaping tablespoons of organic yogurt mixed in and a drip of our home canned fruit pancake syrup.

Thursday, January 3, 2008

I'm A Christian
By Maya Angelou
When I say
"I'm a Christian"
I'm not shouting
"I am clean livin"
I'm whispering "
I was lost"
Now I am found and forgiven.
When I say..."I am a Christian"
I don't speak this with pride.I'm confessing I stumble and
need Christ to be my guide.
When I say ..
" I am a Christian"
I'm not trying to be strong.
I'm professing I am weak
and need HIS strength to carry on.
When I say...
"I am a Christian"
I'm not braggin of success.
I'm admitting I have failed and need GOD to clean my mess.
When I say...."I am a Christian"
I'm not claiming to be perfect,
My flaws are too visible, butGod believes I am worth it.
When I say ..."I am a Christian"
I still feel the sting of pain,I have my share of heartachesSo I call upon HIS name.When I say...
"I'm a Christian"
I'm not holier than thou,I'm just a simple sinner
Who recieved God's Grace

Wean Me Gently

Wean Me Gently
by Cathy Cardall

I know I look so big to you, Maybe I seem too big for the needs I have. But no matter how big we get,
We still have needs that are important to us. I know that our relationship is growing and changing,
But I still need you. I need your warmth and closeness, Especially at the end of the day When we snuggle up in bed. Please don't get too busy for us to nurse.
I know you think I can be patient, Or find something to take the place of a nursing;
A book, a glass of something,
But nothing can take your place when I need you.
Sometimes just cuddling with you,
Having you near me is enough. I guess I am growing and becoming independent, But please be there.
This bond we have is so strong and so important to me, Please don't break it abruptly.

Wean me gently,

Because I am your mother,

And my heart is tender.

Shilohs birth story 7/22/06

Well lets just say that after weeks of nightly contractions that this night I was *hopeful* that this nights bout would turn into the real thing. The night before I had been up til 3AM contracting. The next morning I had some cramping and then became very hopeful when I passed the tiniest bit of bloody fluid. But as usual,
the contractions again quit for the duration of the day. I tried going for the long power walk,
even tried a spoon of castor oil in the afternoon to get things going again,
but it didnt seem that my body would cooperate.
Then towards evening,
along w/ my regular nightly cramps came another infantisimal amount of blood. I was hopeful that even if I didnt go that Friday night that at least we would have a babe sometime during the weekend.
It wasnt until around 10:00 immediately after I nursed Willow that one last time for the night the contractions seemed to pick up suddenly in fervor.
I went to sit on the birthing ball in front of the computer to send daughter Lacy and my email buddies a progress report on what was happening . Within 10 mins of sitting there I was having STRONG contractions 3-5 mins apart! It was so crazy. Mike walks in the room after a looong hard day. He had been up since 5am and was coming in to sit in front of the tv and doze off a bit in front of the news. He decided quickly he had best change his mindset on that plan when he came in to find me in sitting on the birthball breathing loudly through contractions that were so one on top of the other!
Willow suddenly decided that she didnt want to sit by Kailyn and watch cartoons and she started crabbing and wanting me. The last thing I could handle at that moment was nursing her. Her fussing was making me tense so I decided to retreat to the bath tub by 10:25. I assumed it would still be MANY hours til baby arrived,
but I just really needed to go somewhere and be alone. I always feel the need to retreat once active labor started. I figured I could get in and out of the bath tub through out the night,
not knowing that once I sat in there I wouldnt be getting out until I was holding my new baby.
I was so hopeful that as soon as I hopped in the hot water that I would feel instant relief. But it didnt happen. Although the contractions slowed down right away and stopped coming one on top of the other once I relaxed in the hot water in the dark room I was still taken aback by the intensity of them. i just could not find a comfortable position to sit in through the contractions and I found myself bracing myself and tensing right as the contractions were starting up. It didnt help that Willow was in the back ground crying out for me.
Mike popped in and asked what he could get for me,
I requested a candle so I wouldnt be sitting there in the black, and please call Joanna,
our new daughter in law, to come and help out. I really felt that I needed someone else here to help with Willow since my teens were still at camp this one last night,
and also I felt the need for a prayer warrior as this was so much stronger and hard to manage than I had aniticipated.I was not getting into the sensations of labor AT ALL at that moment.
Finally Mike got Willow to sleep(phew) and Joanna got here,
sometime right after 11 I believe.
I asked them to find a CD player and put on some quiet praise music for me. It was beautiful and really helped me thru the rest of the labor
At this point the contractions were still about 5 minutes, at least apart,
the same pattern they had been following since I sat in the tub, and pretty much the pattern they would follow up to the birth. Although they had a nice rest time, when they came upon me they were tremendous. They were so huge and the downward pressure was like nothing I had ever felt before in a labor. I still just could not find a comfortable position so I just sat up in the tub with a towel propped under my bottom to try and relieve some of the intense pressure during contractions.
I had tried to lay back against a couple rolled up towels against the small of my back for counter pressure for my back labor but it just was not hard enough. I asked Mike to get down and push on my back with all his strength, like he had done with all my other labors with each contraction. He was so strong and helpful and just always there. We worked as one the rest of the labor. I cant imagine him not being there.
As soon as Joanna arrived and she was right there in the bathroom with us I felt this overwhelming responsibility not to "lose it" . Although she is a new RN with her nursing license she had never even seen a birth in her training. She had seen bits and pieces of hospital labors but never the whole thing. I suddenly knew that it was up to me and my reactions to this birth and the incredibly STRONG contractions that would very much mold her idea of natural birth. I guess , even though laboring,
suddenly I felt like I had this responsibility to mentor her,
and I was soooooo afraid I couldnt handle it. I had plenty of time to sort things out and focus and think between contractions as they continued to stay far apart. I just kept thinking and praying , "lord, if they are this strong now how will I possibly handle this if it goes on for hours and hours???"
It took every ounce of self control that I could find deep inside me to try and relax through. As soon as the contractions would hit I would yell for Mike
which meant that he was to push on my back
and I would just drop my head onto my chest, relax and let my mouth droop,
as I tried to remain silent and surrender to the contraction. The whole time in my head, and sometimes out loud I was repeating "Thank you Jesus, Thank you Jesus" through each.
I asked Mike to please start praying out loud over me during the contractions to help me get through them. With each one then Mike would pray me through while pushing on my back as Joanna stood next to the tub also praying out loud over me through every single sensation. Joannas presence was also so essential to this birth. She was a rock with her strong faith.
A couple contractions were getting away from me and I started barking like a seal through them. At least one or two I whimpered through. Immediately after a contraction I was not focused enough on and started becoming too vocal I would become determined to be totally silent through the next. I prayed continually that God would help me stay focused and droop my head as Mike held my forehead and that I would stay as controlled as possible.
The intense intense downward pressure on my bottom continued through out. I decided that this was from bulging waters pressing against my cervix. I knew I could easily reach up there and break it w/ my fingernail to relieve the pressure and hurry baby up,
but instead I focused on the fact that I needed to rejoice in the fact that my baby had this cushion and was being protected from the strong contractions. So I started praying and thanking Jesus for the bag of waters instead of cursing it.
The other thing that helped me through each contraction was to visualize a graph chart in my head. As each contraction started I could see a line going up, up as the contraction peaked and then I would start making the line go down down (even before the contraction peaked~ LOL) and told myself it was going away now. I had this little picture in my head through all those last contractions.
I still at this point had this huge fear inside my head that I was fighting that these contractions were not getting closer together! Why arent they getting closer??? What if this still goes on til morning??? Oh Lord,
I cant handle this!
Right then I had another monster contraction and I was trying to visualize the line on the graph to go down but the pain wouldnt go down! It just held on and I thought something was wrong,
then it started to go down a bit on my pain chart but it immediately shot back up to a peakagain with out ceasing. This contraction was just hanging on and hanging on and I am saying to Mike
"push harder, push harder!"
and suddenly,
I felt my water breaking(!) and IMMEDIATELY that intense unbearable back and rectal pressure released! ahhhhhhhhhh, thank you Lord! thank you! it was such a wonderful relief.
Then IMMEDIATELY as the water broke my contractions changed where the pain left my cervix and was transferred to the top of my uterus.
I said under my breath and Mike caught it right away,
"oh good, I am here now"
I knew I was second stage and Mike knew right away what I meant when I said it.
I let the next two contractions go by, resisting any urge to push as I wanted to just make sure if there was a lip or anything that it had a chance to move to ful ldialation. But these next two contractions were just so much nicer and so much easier to just breathe through..
But by the third 2nd stage contraction I got this idea in my head that all I had to do was push this baby out and I would get that wonderful feeling of baby OUT. So next contraction,
that was it,
this babe was coming.
I decided just to lay back in the water and I say to Joanna,
"ok, this baby is coming now,
you need to pray specifically that I dont rip cuz this baby is coming NOW"
With that I did one huge push and pushed baby down ,
I call out to Mike "is the head crowning yet?
He says no.
So next contraction I push again and he yells "head crowning", as I yell through the burn he says "head out"
then I relax. Mike is already crying at this point and saying, "the head is out", kind of in a frantic way like I need to take care of that :))
between the contraction. I dont have a lot of relax time until I feel another contraction and another huge urge to get this out of me,
so then I push and it is burning and I keep pushing and Mike is crying "shoulders out" as I let out a yell and at that I feel that WONDERFUL GLORIOUS sensation of release as this little soul came out of my body!
oh RELIEF! nothing in all the earth is so splendid! and Mike yells out at that moment
As he grabs our baby and directs him up onto my belly. Immediately Joanna throws a towel on baby. I *did* get a glimpse as to what sex we had,
but neither of them even had time to catch it. I am holding our little manchild up to sitting and making sure he is taking a breath and getting the mucus moving as they are both asking "what is it? boy or girl???" and I am just smiling and refusing to give out any info at all. Joanna and Mike are both trying to do a bit of nose mucus sucking with the bulb and we are nice and reassured of his breathing before Mike can finally get around to peaking under the towel and he proclaims
"its a boy!"
Oh what crying and prasing God and joyful exaulting proceeded into the night!
In hind sight I see what a beautiful holy moment the night of this birth was. Of all my 9 personal birthing experiences this one was most definately one of the holiest and most peaceful. Gods presence was sooo evident through the entire labor and delivery and all three of us present felt His loving arms around us.
When looking for the name for this special guy we knew that we needed a special name to reflect the praise of the moment.
Our son has been named
"Shiloh Jude"
which means "praise the Lord" which are the words his blessed papa exclaimed as his son entered into this world,
on July 22, 2006
12:20 AM
7lbs 8oz
he is a miracle!
thank you, Jesus!
I don't think I am *quite* as caught up w/ the whole "stuff" thing as many people in our society,
but still, I have way way too much stuff.
One place I really see that I can help cut down on the amount of waste that I produce is to buy exclusively from Buyers Club. I haven't bought from buyers club for 2 months now bcz of daughter Breinn's wedding/Christmas expenses. I do have bulk food in reserve, stored that we have been using. Still tho,
I definitely have been visiting my local grocery store here and there to pick up the slack,
plus Christmas and wedding preparations,
plus just being sooooo busy that I have been indulging in a bit of convenience type foods over the last couple weeks (like haven't been making bread etc). Man oh man,
does that store bought food produce waste tho! That stuff has more plastic packaging than food inside. And aside from the fact that the bulk foods produce less throw away garbage in packaging,
when I buy cases of small quantities thru them , like bbq sauce and such,
the packaging from buyers club is GLASS ie recyclable,
which also creates a lot less throw aways.
I forgot about that BIG advantage to buyers club. A person remembers the whole foods aspect and healthier food being as the stuff is organic and msg/preservative/chemical/genetically altered free,
but I also need to key in on the fact that bulk is less garbage/less consumerism.
So even tho buyers club is expensive(and I am trying to avoid consumerism)
I am really going to work toward doing my monthly or bi-monthly purchase.
But the whole consumerism thing really struck me too watching all these Twilight Zone reruns the last couple days on tv from the late 50's and early 60's. It was crazy for me to see all the styles and the consumerism of that day. Like the clothes, cars, appliances, lamps, furniture,
just "the lifestyle" of those days gone by that made them look so 50's. And that is what the world looked like then. People worked long and hard to buy those *things*. I mean,
just like *today*,
people were totally driven by consumerism. They worked their entire lives until retirement to pay for all that stuff. And now,
50 yrs later,
most all those people from that show are dead. And basically ALL of that *stuff* , the products from that consumerist society of that day and age,
are long gone and in a land fill. So whats the point???? I mean,
it seems so futile in my mind to work and work and work to buy STUFF. Stuff that lasts just a short short while and then is broken or is no longer needed and it is thrown out.
I hate that Mike has to go to work. I hate that we need so much money to be consumers. Isnt there more important goals in life besides working working working to BUY STUFF????????????????
Of course I understand that in our society a certain amount of consumerism is necessary,
I know we cant live on love:))
I wish I could think of other areas in my life where I could work away from the consumerist mindset of our society and more toward a simple life. Like the buyers club type of buying.
does this make sense to anyone? anyone share my desire?

here is an awesome 20 minute video that covers many aspects of consumerism. Worth the watch:

my world

Willow in kitchen
my once clean kitchen

back of house

here is our house in the summer when the iris is in bloom....

who I am

I'm your atypical ,slightly alternative, nose ring wearing, Christian, lactating earth gramma. Constantly falling in love again with my soulmate of the past 29 yrs, Michael. Together we live in the same house, on the same patch of earth we moved into 28 yrs ago. This old farmhouse has grown along with our family over the years. We live on the frozen tundra up duluth way, and raise a herd of organic grass fed cattle and a few happy chickens for eggs and meat. I am planning on getting a small herd of milking goats in the very near future. We strive to live as self-sufficiently as possible, and we are always growing and revamping in that area. My goal is to stay out of the commercial grocery store altogether and throw away the can opener forever! Not there yet, but working that way.
I am the busy mama of 11 eleven organically grown children ranging in age from 17 months up to 28 yrs. Nine were born to Mike and I and two were born in Haiti and came to us by way of international adoption almost 5 years ago. Our youngest two are still tandum nursing partners and our oldest three are adults and out of the house. We have one daughter in law and one son in law so far and one beautiful little grandson.
My interests include homeschooling, although I am not militant, I have been at that for about 20 yrs now. I love my gardens and can extensively. I try to prepare all our foods from scratch, growing what we can and purchasing the rest, bulk, through a whole foods buyers club, Natural Farms. The semi delivers right to our doorstep about once a month or so. I also order a few times a year from Frontier, a buying club that specializes in spices , soaps and cosmetics.
We are UC birthing, cloth diapering, non-vaxing, natural remedy type of folk who try to eat as healthy as possible, to stay as far away from the doctor as we can.
I strive to live simply and am working at avoiding consumerism where I can. My children and grandchildren are my jewels. They are the most important blessings in my life.