July 30, 2012

Not 34 anymore....

Yesterday I turned husband will be 40 on his next birthday.  
My dad and Natalia...
 Look who fell asleep on Grammie.
 There's something for Juliana here.
 Hugs for her great grandpa.
 Emma climbed the mimosa tree and put her bird on a branch up high.
 Natalia running with her bird.
Juliana with her bird from her great grandpa.
Cutting the birthday mom also made homemade vanilla ice cream....scrumptiousness!
My grandpa is here in Ohio, right now, he and his wife live in New Jersey and it's been about 4 years since they've come here, as it's harder to travel when you get older.  We went to visit them last year and the year before, though.  He is going to be 90 very soon.  He bought presents for all the kids, picked them out and wrapped them himself, his wife, Josie, told us.  So sweet.  We had a cookout together followed by birthday cake.  ♥  My mom made my favorite, carrot cake with cream cheese frosting!

July 23, 2012

Just molting...

Well, this past week, I was surprised that Nutmeg, our Rhode Island Red, hadn't laid an egg....since she started laying eggs last November, she'd been a consistent layer.  Everyday about 1 o'clock she'd have a pretty brown egg there for us. 
Then, I got really worried as I went out the backdoor and down the steps and saw a bunch of feathers!  Oh, no!  Had there been an attack?   
Chickens, however, molt, that means they loose their feathers and new ones will grow in, yearly.  During that time, which can be a few months, they do not lay eggs.  Here is a great description of exactly what goes on:
Rob tilled up the overgrown lettuce and radishes, then planted more lettuce and swiss chard seeds.
She loves to eat kale leaves and seeds.  And I picked another Poona Kheera cucumber today:

July 18, 2012

What do you do with giant okra?

We are taking care of 3 gardens right now.  This is my friend named Sandy's garden (who is in New Jersey visiting her daughter and then she's going to Alabama to visit her son):
 This is Maria's garden (who is in Russia with her husband and son):
 I just picked an eggplant there...
 This is the okra plant...such lovely flowers!
 And Maria has 3 horses...they are so beautiful.
 Olivia in our garden...and to the left you can see a cantaloupe size melon!

 Hannah picked some peas...
This morning I got some giant okra out of Maria's garden.  I think they're too hard to eat, but thought I'd ask...  The small ones will be fine.  How do you prepare okra?  Since we lived in Georgia for 5 years I should know how to make it...breaded and fried, but I don't really like it that way.  Any suggestions? 

July 16, 2012

This week...our trip to ORPR camp!

This past week we took a trip to Chicago, stayed with our friend, Rita, who had sweet black raspberries growing in her yard.
Rita is 77 years old and has 3 is 51 years old, Diana and needs prayers.  Rita has been with her as much as she possibly can, as Diana has been in the hospital for over a month now.  Diana was diagnosed with RSD a few years ago and there have been so many complications, most recently, her medication damaged her stomach, so on Friday, the doctors put in a feeding tube.  Rita still works at the YMCA with children part-time but has taken a lot of time off to be with her daughter.  Can you imagine how it would be to watch your daughter suffer?
 Bishop Alypy gives the sermon Sundays...
Then, went up to northern Illinois near Rock City for...
ОРПР (ORPR) camp.  That stands for "Oрганизация Pоссийских православных Pазведчиков" (which means "Organization of Russian Orthodox Pathfinders" in English).  

I did arts and crafts with the children at camp.  The first project we worked on was lanyard and beaded key chains, the second one was papier mache they are mid-way through...
Next the children will paint them...  The last project was a wooden icon corner.  Many of the children assembled them, and got to use the wood burning tools to design them.  There are still 3 more weeks of camp left.   
Masha washed all the Russian costumes...we did some sewing and repaired a few as well.  Most of the time, however, we worked in the kitchen, washing vegetables, slicing and dicing, serving food, then washing dirty dishes.
Olivia and new friends from camp ♥

July 4, 2012

Happy 4th of July, ya'll! ♥ (AND a tribute to Andy Griffith)

Olivia (July 4, 2011) all ready to ride her bike in the parade!  This year we're staying home, as Hannah threw up yesterday...we'll do sparklers in the backyard to honor America's Independence!!!
Yesterday, in the morning (before Hannah got sick) the girls had swim team practice 8:30 to 9:30 and in the meantime I walked to a local cemetery where there are lots of graves of soldiers who served during the American Revolution.  Beautiful place.  I plan to go back there and take pictures...

Yesterday, Andy Griffith passed away...

Born June 1, 1926 

Died July 3, 2012 

He was a devote Christian.  I think it's amazing that he was buried a mere 5 hours after he passed away.  I hope that I am so prepared.  May his soul be at rest. ♥
Although I never met him, I feel like I know him, on his TV series, he plays the Sheriff Andy Taylor, a truth telling, kind man, a single father who fishes with his son in his free time, eating homecooked dinner with his Aunt Bee, plays guitar and sings songs on his front porch.
Last month, Andy Griffith turned 86, my parents had been watching every show on know the ones with Opie and Aunt Bee and Deputy Fife and the drunk Otis.   ♥  The bond between Opie and his father seems so real.
Here's one of the TV episodes:

And I hope you have a wonderful 4th of July!!!  God bless America.