Whew, we made it through a great Christmas. There is lots of activity with eight kids to celebrate with, and we were dreaming of our littles being home for next year's celebrations! It was wonderful to have time with family and friends and kids. We had a simple Christmas but it was so rich. We are enjoying time together in this slightly quieter time before real life resumes next week - when all our usual activities resume - voice lessons, music lessons, church, and all the other stuff. I pretty much decided that we would take a lighter school load this week and I am very glad we did!
Winter on the farm has been slow. Only an inch of snow before Christmas and it is all gone now. But at least the days will start getting longer! We are looking forward to that, as with the reduced light and all, we are getting no eggs at all from our chickens. We really miss those fresh eggs and look forward to when they resume in the next month or so! We always have about two months where our free range chickens don't produce, but it is good for them to get a bit of a rest too, at least I think so.
In the spring we should have some baby goats too! Some of our ladies are quite plump and so we are watching closely. We did an inexact breeding schedule this year, so it will be a guessing game! Baby goats are great fun, and we so miss the daily fresh milk! I just have a hard time buying milk, knowing that it is older than I would like and who knows what the cows have gotten. When we are in regular production at our house, our milk is drank fresh that day, or at the most from the day before. And if the goats are making more than we drink up, well, then we make mozzarella cheese and ricotta cheese!!! I MISS IT!!!
I am trying my hand at sourdough bread making though! I am tempted to try making crackers too, but we shall have to see how much time there is in a day! We love Amish friendship bread and the kids love to eat it up for breakfast! We also got a quesadilla maker for a gift this Christmas, so we had better get going making tortillas!!!! I have so many ideas in my head, but am trying to stick to one at a time!! That is actually the hardest part!
We are also doing sewing around here. I have the girls working on some simple projects to slowly build their skills - right now they are working on controlling speed and movement with the sewing machine with paper. I was thinking a really good first project would be pillow cases. They dislike skirts, so I doubt I could get them to make any of those, though they would be easy. The next thing will be pajama pants, I think. I am tempted to sew dresses for the little girls, but again, my eyes are always bigger than my time, so I am trying to limit myself a bit to just one thing at a time!
And of course, we are busy with the horses and all. We are working with one of our young ponies to get her used to being handled and haltered and led. It is less intimidating for my younger girls to start with a smaller horse, though Kiley is handling the big ones with no fear, no surprise there. Her big guy (JT) is coming along really well. Still growing and he is over 16 hands now! But gentle as a puppy, though sometimes with as much energy.
I am looking forward to planning the garden for spring. That activity usually gets me through the awful long days of winter. Keeps me looking forward.
I have been speaking with other families who are waiting on their adopted children in Ethiopia - just like we are. It is a hard spot to be in, we miss them so much, are waiting on all the changes we know they will bring to our lives, and there is nothing we can do but wait. I am finding that I am a bit more patient this time around. Maybe. There is nothing I can do, except work to keep myself sane. So, we are busy with home activities, remodeling, preparing, organizing and whatever else it takes to keep busy. I am finding that this helps me the most. I so want to be reading stories with Azeb and Kahsu, but I now that I will be one day. Soon, this long winter of wait will be over. We would love to hear that we need to go soon, but we just don't know. One day the phone will ring, so in the meantime, I make the best of it. I know that it is really hard for some, it is for me too, but I also have lots to do, so maybe that helps me. Please keep our little girls in your prayers. That God would keep them safe, and prepare their little hearts and minds for all the changes that are going to come for them. That God would prepare us and help us to use this time to the best.
Happy New Year everyone!!!
"For I know the plans I have for you, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans for hope and a future." Jeremiah 29:11