Happy Halloween 2021

 We had Annie Oakley,  a last minute change to a ballerina and Jimmy the Milkman. 

Many thanks to my husband for bringing them out and about so I could get something done and clear my brain. We only go to people we know, so the kids come home and tell me who gave them what.  They have quite the loot, thank you friends! 

Anna-Kate is 4 and a HALF


 three and a HALF.

Here she's three

Two and a HALF

Dear Anna-Kate:

You are four and a HALF!  And goodness, you don't let us forget.  You remind us you are now big because you are a four and a HALF. You reminded us alllll day long that it was your half birthday on your half birthday and everyone should do as you please because it was your special day.  You would love nothing more than being the boss of this house, and you tell us that is your lifelong goal.

You never, ever, ever, ever stop talking. Your hands need to be busy every second. If you have nothing to fiddle with, you fiddle with your hair.  You like to be busy every second. 

Your busy, however, is very focused and mature. You could spend hours looking at books, cutting things out with scissors, building things, creating things, arranging tiny pieces.  Everything is interesting to you and you can entertain yourself quite well when provided with just about anything that's a manipulative.  

You are a great eater and enjoy a variety of tastes.  You're the only one who cheers for mushrooms.  You also get excited about things like asparagus.  You told me you didn't really like Halloween candy, and instead went out to snack on collard greens. You still love colorful.  And yogrit. (AKA Yogurt).  

You have so many cute little sayings.  Gloves aren't glubs anymore, but we still have things like katennas (for antennas), underbrella (for umbrella), broth for bra and so many more I can't think of at the moment.

When outside, you're not a fan of bikes or balls. You would prefer to collect eggs (checking every few minutes for a new one), tote the rooster around, boss the dogs around, forage for food or garden. You also do quite a bit of singing to yourself. Did I mention you are never quiet?  Never ever.

You miss me when I'm gone just for a couple hours and when you see me again, you holler MAMAS!!!! and run for a hug. You give the best snuggles.  You especially like to crawl in bed with me and read books.  You would do that anytime, you are always up for books and snuggles. 

You bring so much joy to our family, we are so thankful for you, Anna-Kate. 

Love you bunches, 


Funfetti cake topped with frosting and sprinkles for our colorful girl. 

October Homesteader in Maine

My hands consistently look like working hands, been in the dirt almost everyday.  I hosted another plant swap, so I dug to share and digging to plant.

Pulled a couple quarts off the Raspberries...hard to believe October 28th and I'm still pulling raspberries. 
My raspberry faced helper...
With a tutu, naturally. 

The best dinner for a homesteader who is spending every bit of time outdoors working? Fresh picked fruit, our own eggs, homemade bread (thank you freezer) and homemade jam (popped open that mason jar). 
Still have garlic, tulips, cranberries and parsnips to plant. Still have to dig some bulbs that don't winter in the garden. Still have some perennial flowers I aim to move.  Still have lots to do before the ground freezes. I think I can, I think I can, I think I can.  Perhaps I need my own tutu to keep me on my toes.

Nor' Easter

Who wants to get out? Tide coming in, waves crashing. So windy and a momentary brief break in the rain. Only this fearless one wanted to get out.

The rest of us were content to watch safely from inside the van with our books.  


Right now we are experiencing less than pleasant weather with a Nor' Easter....makes our October picnic days feel like forever ago. Glad we took advantage of so many nice days in October.  

Today will not be a picnic day, but we will curl up by the fire for some books, which is pretty fantastic too. 

New Barn Roof

Here it is raining buckets in Maine and it is NOT RAINING IN OUR BARN NOW.  I cannot even begin to tell you what a relief that is! 

7:30 am 

Mid morning
Of course my kids needed to 'help'.  They were so kind, letting them be involved.

Done by dinner.
I totally fed the crew.  Wonderful crew from Ecuador.  We didn't speak the same language verbally, but we all understand the language of homemade warm food on a chilly fall day.

Adrian painted this for them.

And now our barn is not leaking.  Next up, we need foundation help. Recommendations?!

Frost is coming

 Sill working on making lemonade out of lemons...unfortunately today shot me more lemons than lemonades. Perhaps tomorrow will be my reset? 

Until then, I am finding a few gems so my memories of today are sweeter. 

1) Frost is coming. I brought in a TON of flowers.

2) I also picked what is likely my last quart and a half of raspberries.  Plus there are bowls upon bowls upon bowls of tomatoes.  And more basil than we would probably eat in a decade.  But it's in.

3) The October afternoon sun is delightful. 
May tomorrow be a day with cups brimming with sweet lemonade!


Some days things are hard. Some weeks things are hard. 
Here's to hoping and praying the weekend will be a marvelous reset. 

Lost and Found

When we bought this house, it had a cast iron dinner bell outside. It was taken off when we did some replacements of rotted parts of our mudroom years ago.  Ever since, I have not been able to find it. I looked in the barn, garage, cellar way, cellar.  No one remembered moving it. No one knew where it went. I honestly had assumed it was accidentally thrown away. Today I just so happened to move a piece of wood in the woodshed and lo and behold, I found it!!!  I am over the moon!!!  I cleaned it up and am planning a fresh coat of paint.  It was a bit more of a search, but I also found the cast iron stick to ding it with (not picture). All was located and is ready to use.

To be honest, life as of late has had numerous trials. The work of the mama of the house is one that is forever going, always trying and struggling to not grow weary. It seems three steps ahead and maybe five steps back lately. Will I ever complete anything?  Am I doing the right things? Will the 'to do' list ever get shorter?  How can I even do the things I ought to do for me? Is my best enough? I'd like to say this isn't my internal dialogue, but it is.  It's hard to keep the energy when it feels like life is a treadmill going a few clicks too fast and the dial to turn down the speed is missing.

The turning up of the dinner bell came at a time when my self doubting was rambling on. It made me stop in my tracks and turn the tide. The dinner bell is a story of hope.  Something I had lost was to be found. Something missing was located. The problem worked itself out.  It was right here, all these years under my nose.  Certainly not the timeline I expected, but it all worked out in the end.

Sometimes the day to day overwhelms. Planting one seed at a time, awaiting the harvest is tiring work that requires patience. I have faith the harvest will be grand. Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up. (Galations 6:9). 

Book buddies

 On one of the last warm days, I found little Miss Anna-Kate enjoying a good book with her fave book buddy.

Getaway last day

Our last day of adventure had clear sky and nice weather. A beautiful fall day.


Once we got back to camp, my husband took the kids to the water for an hour and a half. I read on the porch. A perfect afternoon.

The nice part of having a cabin meant that I could cook real meals. Some I prepped at home and some I made there.  Pictured below: Chili, bread, applesauce, all homemade. The applesauce was from the apple tree on the property. (They said take all you want, my kids loaded up.)

Nighttime fires and card games. I'm totally the kind who brings homegrown flowers when we go away to enjoy.  We really enjoyed our quick getaway.


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