Saturday, December 25, 2010

Glorious Gift


These angels were a free gift just for me -- on Thursday, the Winkler MCC store was giving away all their remaining Christmas decorations. There were few shoppers and fewer remaining Christmas things, but these angels caught my eye. I immediately felt so blessed to be "gifted" them.

Infinitely more precious is the free gift of God's Son, Jesus, Whose coming was announced by angels:

"Fear not: for behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy,
which shall be to all people.
For unto you is born this day ...
a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord ..."

And suddenly a multitude of heavenly host praising God, and saying,

"Glory to God in the Highest,
and on earth peace,
Good will towards men."


This greatest glorious gift is for you too!



Merry Christmas!

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

JESUS

the Answer to all our questions,

the Yes to all God's promises,

the AMEN to all our prayers,

the Giver of all our blessings,

the Forgiver of all our sins,

the Savior of all who trust in Him.
Eternal is HIS WORD,

Forever is HIS PEACE,

Unchanging is HIS PROMISE

of everlasting LOVE.

Monday, December 20, 2010

It's a Happy Day, Happy Day!

Those are the exact words I heard from three little men.

I've said it before, now I can show you ... cardboard boxes make wonderful toys! In this case, the bigger the better. And this box is HUGE as far as boxes go. I expect we'll have a permanent fixture in our basement ... at least for the winter.


Today is like Christmas at our house...and December 25 is still 5 days away!


A big new freezer arrived in a huge cardboard box. One look and there were six excited young men planning a playhouse for little sister. They had just as fun making it as she's having playing in it.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Winter's Lace


Winter has arrived with mounds of white stuff. The sparkling snow on a sunny day or the swirling snowflakes floating down all make the landscape so pretty & pristine.

I'm reminded of God's words,

"Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean: Wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow." Psalm 51:7

and

"Come now, and let us reason together, saith the LORD: Though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as snow."
Isaiah 1:18



Then ...

I liked this bit of poetry that Jaynee shared on her blog. I thought it relevant to share with you:

Snowflakes are like children.
Each one beautiful.
Each one unique.
Each one designed by our Lord!


You were once a child, so was I. In fact everyone was. We are all beautiful, unique, designed & loved by God.

... and that thought is so amazingly beautiful!

Friday, December 10, 2010

Faith can be a frightening place, but nothing compares to the adventure of entrusting yourself to the capable and loving arms of the Father.~~ Peter Jordan

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Sweet Treat

Most candy dishes are filled to overflowing this time of year. Goodie bags are frequently handed out to children at schools, at Church programs and at Grandma's.

There is entirely too much of a not-so-good thing around.

How is a parent to keep their children healthy and happy through it all ... especially if one of the children is diabetic?

We've struggled with that for more than ten years now. Candy is deemed a reward, a good thing when in reality it is not. Especially to a diabetic, but just as certainly to every child.

The truth is sugar is deadly for everyone ... in the long run.

We can't always say "No" to a child when candy is in question. Oftentimes it also hurts them to be singled out as "different" & given their own "special" candy. To them it isn't special, they just want to be normal & get the same junk everyone else gets without limits like everyone else ... BUT diabetics CAN'T.

Sometimes it would be nice to change the world ... yet in reality? Life doesn't work that way.



So, what do you do to treat you children?



We have found a few things that compensate: one is gum & candies made with the sweetener called xylitol. "Spry" is the brand we've come to enjoy ... it was first recommended to us by our dentist. The bonus? Xylitol inhibits cavities and though it does have a carbohydrate count it does not cause a spike in the blood sugar. Win/win!

We have tried the Spry gum in four flavors: cinnamon, spearmint, peppermint, and fruit flavored - they have a new green tea flavor out now.

The Spry mints/candies are in four great flavors: lemon, berry, peppermint, spearmint and a new raspberry that we haven't tried yet, but the rest are yummy!

More candy ideas here.

At our house, gummy vitamins and flavored vitamin C work as "treats" also. Yay for Mom, cause I like 2 for 1's!!!! Acidophilus rates right up there with candy among my littles too. Of course, we limit these to the rating on each bottle.

There are other treats of course, inedible ones like floss pics, erasers, etc, but I'm always looking for more ideas.

Do you have any ideas, favorite treats? Let me know in the comments below. Thanks so much for sharing.


Disclaimer: Check with your physician before using these suggestions. This post is not meant to be taken as medical advice.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Hours & Hours


We are so-o-o blessed to have a hill right on our yard, just outside the door. Our littles, and company, have spent hours & hours of fun out there ... on that hill, using it to one advantage or another.

In winter, it is great for sledding:


In summer, it hosts a great water slide - yep, using the water tank FULL of water in one day.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Building Memories



A recent family field trip to The Manitoba Museum" formerly "The Man & Nature Museum" left quite an impression on our young men. Of course, climbing on the "Nonsuch" and exploring it from top to bottom & stem to stern was the highlight.

In fact, they continue to build memories by making a replica in Lego:

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Beautiful Harmony

Faith Mattaya playing "Jesus Loves Me" together with Corbyn ... on her violin! Gotta love it!

video

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Eternal Blessings

A fun shot from our family photo session!

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Writer's Block & / or Busy

There's been so much happening lately, I haven't known what to give priority post ...

With the tractor came the opportunity to get a myriad of things caught up before the snow. It's still not all done, not that I have to do it, but guess who gets to do the majority of the inside work? I don't mind, but there certainly is much to keep me busy. Needless to say, keeping you posted has not been top priority.

Some of us made a quick much needed trip to Saskatchewan to visit family over Thanksgiving. It was a good, much-needed well-earned break. Yes, we have much to be thankful for.

Upon our return we've gotten the remainder of the chickens into freezers, started the winter Farmer's Market and finally started school full bore. Like I said before, we're always learning, but now it is time to put in some serious time with the book studies. Oh, we've also taken family pictures (watch for those) & celebrated Thanksgiving with our Church fellowship. Never a lack for things to do 'round here. Did I mention hunting thrown into that mix? Gotta restock the freezer for another year ya' know. Our crew eats heartily, though it does slow down for winter when they are not quite as active physically.

This good food we grow is such a blessing to our family too. The value is priceless in so many ways. I'm continually amazed at how much I'm learning to cook with new fresh garden goodies ... and that my family tries it & most often enjoys it is a huge additional blessing! They're learning to grow & eat good healthy foods through this life we live here @ Klasse Woods.

Of course, wrapping things up for winter seemingly never ends. I'm still hoping to get the Fall cleaning done, including windows inside & out. Closets will be next ... and I can always hope for a few minor improvements indoors ??

Thursday, September 30, 2010

Now, Let's Talk Turkey!

The fan club ...



... in the freezer!

Thousands

This picture is worth a thousand words:



Of course, the tractor is worth thousands of dollars.

It will save thousands of hours and it will be useful in thousands of jobs here at Klasse Woods Natural Farm.


And one for fun ...

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Colors of Fall




This beauty is deceiving ... it's poison ivy. One of the first to turn color in Fall, it keeps it's color a long time too.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Monday, September 13, 2010

A Messy Test?

GOD can turn a "mess" into a Message,

... and a "test" into a Testimony!



IF we let Him.



Romans 8:28 ... He works ALL things out for GOOD for those who LOVE HIM ...

Praise HIM !

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Meaningful Memories

Two years ago today, my little sister went to heaven. At nearly 41 years (she's 40 in the picture above), she had far outlived her life-expectation. She was physically & mentally challenged, yet in spite of her condition she left a legacy, through the efforts of our parents -- because our parents (along with a few other such parents in our community) foresaw the need their challenged children would have when they would be adults.

A pilot project group home was begun in the mid-80's in small-town Hague, Saskatchewan. That first home, Sunshine Housing, was an astounding success. So much so that, by the time of Vonda's passing on September 8, 2008 there were no less than 42 such homes around the province.

My sister Vonda had some of the best years of her life as an adult, with fewer health issues and great opportunities living in "her own home" in Saskatoon. Thanks in great part to the SAI program workers.

And ... the legacy lives on in the life of our youngest brother, also challenged, who even today enjoys a quality of life beyond our best imaginations for them. And of course, many others also benefit from the legacy -- not only those challenged, but also the support staff people and their families who benefit from the career opportunities and love these precious people have to offer. A whole industry has grown out of this legacy. Small town Hague thrives, in part, because of what Sunshine Housing has to offer -- they now have not one, not two, but three houses which are home to challenged adults & offering respite to their younger peers.


A Precious Memory:
As I had requested, my folks sent this picture of my little sister Vonda in a special dress Mom made for her:


The other day, we made another memory -- we dressed up our own little Faith Mattaya in that Holly Hobbie dress Mom made for Vonda. It fits Faith Mattaya at 18 months except for the length. Vonda wore it at about 9 years of age.





Dressing Faith up in this memorable dress is just like playing dolls. We doubled the precious memories!!!!

I am just so glad that we have the assurance of meeting Vonda in heaven one day ... and the knowledge that she is in a better place with no more suffering really blesses me too.

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Monday, August 30, 2010

Butterflies or Back to School?

As a home schooling family, just like everyone else, we often get asked the question "When are you starting school?" This year, having the market garden which is still producing in it's bounty, it is rather hard to set a start date as we have done in years past.

This year, like most of the rest, our summer has been ripe with learning opportunities: Marketing & Math are excellent training for the older boys. The younger boys also have a myriad of learning opportunities as they observe their world of wonder, things that their older siblings have already gleaned.


Just one science project that the twins are observing is the process of a caterpillar they found change into a cocoon, then a chrysalis and finally into the butterfly that they have determined through research that it will become --- so much more fun & real & enduring than learning from a book. We review Math, addition & multiplication, happens in the garden while picking 5 handfuls of 10 beans or 8 sets of 3 peas -- then whispering to Mommy how many beans/peas they picked etc. The concept of dozens happens while washing & packing eggs into cartons. Temperature is watched closely on the computer weather website -- do we need to water the garden today or cover it because it might freeze tonight? Will we have a few dry days in a row to cut the hay & get it baled before it gets rained on? Of course, counting money is a natural after a successful day at the market -- checking the coins to find special ones to add to their collections is incentive enough to rifle through the change & identify each one!

Of course, as home educating parents, we also know where our students are at - what they are capable of learning and/or need yet to learn - so we can capitalize on those prime opportunities that God gives to input new information into their lives or emphasize facts, theories & character into our children. Each day God gives grace & insight, He is there to fill our gaps & to "take back the years that the locusts have eaten" when we fail. Though we try not to fail, being human, we often fall short. Yet, He has blessed us with each child. It is He on Whom we can rely to teach & direct each child into their strengths & purpose for which He has made them. He loves them all infinitely more than we ever could, yet He saw fit to give us the joy of loving, knowing & training each child. What an honor! We strive to be found faithful & look toward the eternal reward, to hear His words "Well done, though good & faithful servant."

So, in reality, we are always in school - the school of life. Our school never ends, though we do put away some books & scale back the academic schedule for the busy outdoor summer months, but we never need to go back to school. We're always learning - a goal we hope to instill on our children is a "love of learning" along with the skills to learn.

To God be the Glory!

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

A Hubbard

I'm wondering if the "Hubbard Squash" is named after "olde Mother Hubbard"? It certainly would have filled up her cupboard, lol!

Our little cowgirl is riding it like a bronc ... it's almost that big, just not bucking.


Apparently some folks prefer the hubbard to pumpkin because the flesh is smooth, not stringy like pumpkin can tend to be ... and just as sweet or sweeter. So if you have a hankerin' for some pumpkin pie? You know where to get the fresh squash for the filling.

Monday, August 23, 2010

Appetizer

Our all-time favorite zucchini dish -- at least once a week in zucchini season, which started on June 17th this year for us. Whoohoo!



Do yourself a favor and give this appetizer dish a try! Be sure to try it with the Dill Dip too.

Go here for the Baked Zucchini recipe.

Friday, August 13, 2010

Talking Turkey

Wow, the weeks are flying by and we're already looking at the end of summer 2010!

This year we tried raising turkeys. We'd heard they are rather fragile & finicky their first 8 weeks or so ... and that was our experience also. Now they're growing good and happy in their portable sheltered home.

We have 31 of the original 50 turkeys left, but these are hale & healthy. Growing & garbling -- I actually kind of like their "turkey talk". What do you think? (You can hear our princess in the background too -- she loves the animals ... a farm girl through & through, lol!)

video

Having heard the phrase "talking turkey" I wanted to check out what it means. Do you know what it means? It's actually like someone saying to you "let's get down to business" ... or "Let's get serious and talk business now!"

Yup. Turkey is part of our business now.

Have you ordered your 2010 Thanksgiving/Christmas turkey yet? As you can see, supplies are limited. They are booked for processing at an inspected facility on September 30 ... just in time for your big Thanksgiving supper!

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Garden Markets


When we're not busy at the Neepawa market we're getting ready for it ... or the CSA baskets which are more of the same delivered on Tuesdays to Brandon.



We're also trying a roadside market at the end of our lane. Saturday morning and early afternoon there is a lot of traffic going to and from Circle Square Ranch. We've done this for two weeks and so far the net profits have been equal to that of our first market attempts in both Brandon and Neepawa. This is certainly less driving which is a huge bonus!

Who knows? Perhaps we may have the beginnings of a Klasse Woods Country Market??

If it is to be? It will take some persistence, that we know already.

Praying for wisdom. James 1:5

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Potatoes

Everyone loves fresh garden potatoes ... just like we do! The smaller, the better! LOL!

Digging ...




... by hand digging potatoes got old fast. We're thankful to have a neighbor who is willing to come help us "dig spuds" once a week. We're shopping for a tractor that can do everything we need it to. Please pray with us that we will find the right one. Thanks.



Washing:

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Busy Days of Summer

These are busy days which means less posting. However, you may be interested in checking out our Klasse Garden blog which is seeing more activity now that our CSA season is once again under way.

With our fresh garden produce, I've been trying out new cooking adventures once again. Fresh herbs continue to amaze me in their culinary colors & flavors ... they are just not the same as their dried counterparts. Trust me. Try fresh herbs in your cooking, you owe it to yourself.

Kale has grown well for us this year for the first time and I'm learning how to use this incredibly healthy green ... in salads, stir-frys, smoothies, etc.



Yesterday I tried making Kale Chips with great success -- they are almost as good as potato chips and go well with a BBQ meal, or for a healthy savory snack!
Today, I made Kale Krisps ... WOW! says it all. My boys were asking for more. I quickly snatched up the last bite to give it a try, lol!
Click the links to get the recipes from my Garden blog.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Furry Friends & Funny Expressions











She likes Flowers





Green Salad



Our lunch today was he epitome of locally grown ... totally grown at Klasse Woods. Comprised of twelve locally grown greens and fresh eggs. A perfect & delicious lunch!

The greens are listed on my garden blog.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Garden Goodies


Some of these garden goodies are quite early this year. We're so thankful for everything -- there are so many folks we know without gardens this year due to the wet weather.

This basket is what our CSA customers received this week.

Monday, July 5, 2010

F.F.F.

(Floral Fotoghapic Fun)

These beautiful road side flowers kept calling my name(Corbyn)
when I drove past. So I stopped and took some pictures. Then
I have some fun tryng some editing programs.





Thank God for the beauty of flowers.