Sunday, April 27, 2014

Did I Mention?

Did I ever mention I just love me some babies?  Well, I do.  I was happy as a clam to meet our newest addition last evening when Aunt Tish brought her first ever grandbaby girl to visit.  Gwanfader and Ol' Mother Hubbard stopped in to have a peek at Miss Cheeks and an impromptu dinner party, with Missy Cheeks the honored guest, ensued- good times.
Look at those wee curled up toes. I'm telling you, nothing like them.

This is the first time in ten years that we've  gone two years without there being another gramerling on the way.  So I'm trusting the Good Lord that there is one, we just don't know about her yet.  Can't wait till she finds us.

Backtracking a bit, which it seems I'm good at these days.  Easter was perfect at Drummer Boy's with lots of yummy food and cutest gramerlings.
  One Blue eyed Boy, who looks more like his brown eyed Daddy every day.

A little Buttons hunting some mighty large eggs.

One Buttercup who spies an egg in that little tree and orchestrates a jump to nab it.
A little short just yet.  She needed some help from her knightly cousin Bean.

Some carrot cupcakes fashioned into chicks and bunnies.


Most lovely.

Sunday, April 20, 2014

Swirling Hymns

Wow, what a beautiful Easter morning. 
 So many old hymns swirl around in my mind- The Old Rugged Cross, Up from the Grave He Arose, Because He Lives, In Christ Alone.  I love so many new and beautiful praise and worship tunes, but those hymns comfort my heart like nothing else, reminding me why we celebrate this day.  I want to sing them all the day long and reflect on the truth that makes me free in Christ. 
Recently I came across a prayer that was simple and so very real to me. 
 The book said it was a seaman's prayer- Lord be good to me today. The sea is so wide and my boat is so small.
As all holidays now, in addition to the rejoicing part is the missing part of those gone on, but the song in my heart reminds me of the hope in seeing them again one day.

Thursday's Playdate was surprisingly warm, so we visited the creek while the eggs were hidden.
Aunt SuZQ's grands and great grands visited.  First trip to my creek for Tony/Todd Jr.

 You just can't have too many egg hunts, but this year I added a little twist.  The baskets stayed in one spot and hunters had to run, grab only one egg at a time and bring it back to the basket.   Turns out it was a great idea and they were happy to come in and have supper after all that running.
 I never tire of the antics of tiniest ones.  Those who only want eggs with candy, those who can't move on until they see what is in that egg, and those are just thrilled with the hunt.  Good Times.

Wishing you many wonderful Easter Blessings!

Friday, April 11, 2014

Brown Paper Packages Tied Up with Strings

Well, it wasn't exactly tied up with strings, but still, packages in the mail are a favorite.  I frequent the blog of Susan Adcox, at Grandparents and have for some time. It is a great resource for fun ideas and just to hear opinions of grandparents from all over.  She has a new grandparenting journal out and sent it me to look at.
Love the cover and love, love that it opens flat for ease in writing with so very many great topics.

Excuse me a minute whilst a haul myself up on my soapbox.  If you'd prefer to miss seeing a chubby ol' grandma haul herself up there, look away my friend.
Personally, I'm appalled by what electronics are doing to relationships and traditions.  Don't misunderstand. I'm delighted to get funny texts and pictures of that "right now" moment, but there are a lot of moments that happened long ago that are no longer being discussed.  How long before they stop building houses with dining rooms and kitchens I wonder.  Can I tell you how many kidlets we put in cars at the end of day with the DVD already going, or how many times a handheld device is waiting in the car seat.  What ever happened to, "What did you do at school today?"
My children come to me in fifth grade very nearly geographically and historically illiterate.  They don't pay any attention to where they are when they travel.  There are no conversations overheard at dinner about politics or past family stories.  Every single year I am amazed at what children learn about their families from projects I send home that ellicit some conversation. They frequently have no idea that grandad fought in the war, or where their ancestors came from.
When I first flipped through Susan's book, I was ready to grab my pen and start.  I realized though, I do have this blog, and though I have not recounted childhood experiences, my grandchildren could learn a lot about be through reading it.  
My mom doesn't have a blog.  In the summer, when I'm out of school, I'm able to spend more time with her.  Some days it's hard to find things to talk about because as her health has been more challenging, her world has grown smaller and smaller and smaller.  I'm excited to ask her questions and record her answers.  In one section it tells about grades and school work.  It always fascinated me that my mom was good with numbers, but could never spell, especially considering I was just the opposite.
In these pages she can share about her wedding to my Dad and whilst this book will reflect many happy memories, it also has places to share the tough times. 
 Mom is 85 and I feel like now is the best  time to start.
What do your children and grandchildren know about your life, your parent's life?  Do they understand how certain cliches and traditions developed?  Do they know how you came to be in the career you are in?  Why your faith is important to you? Don't wait, there won't really be a better time.

Stepping down now.

Thanks Susan!

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Newbees and Olbees

Last year we bought two boxes of bees. Both hives did really well, but if you remember, the bees in Langstroth hive were as mean as striped snakes.  I didn't want attack bees for myself, but I certainly couldn't have that with my wee folk about, so we had to requeen that hive.  Though the Top Bar hive was content and lovely to work with, they clearly found the grass greener on the other side and swarmed with all the honey in early September.
I waited a few weeks to see if the few bees that remained were raising another queen. Apparently not, so I put them in the Langstroth and closed up the Top Bar and brought in all the combs so moths and beetles wouldn't destroy them.
Well, the bees with the new queen survived very well in the Langstroth hive and today are hauling in pollen as fast as those tiny wings can go.
 We have yellow, red, nude and gold pollen.

Handy Man picked up our new bee box for the Top Bar hive today.  Since neither of the boxes last year were satisfactory- a hive that swarmed and a mean queen that needed beheading, we decided to go with a different breeder and bought ones bred for good hygiene, which should help keep down the varroa mite population.
This little box contains Queenie Bee, but the cork was already cattywhampus.  Usually there is a piece of candy in there. It gives the hive time to get used to her scent. So, I stuck a marshmallow hunk in there.

 This box was like a different critter from last year. I don't think there was one dead bee and you see lots of new little fuzzy girls, which means they aren't very old.
 See them going after that queen. You can see a piece of the marshmallow  peeking through.
I tell you, I can't say enough about this bee jacket.  You see they are all over me, but it doesn't phase me.  Since I've learned to pull a puffy pair of sweat pants over my jeans, or whatever, there is no problem at all.  
I'll check back in a couple of days to see if they have her out.  Man there were a ton of bees in that box.  Since all of their comb is already built, I'm expecting big things from these littlest bits.

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Done and Done

Before Bean and Bugg headed south for the week, we had to wrap up these science projects we've been working on for a month now.
They came over Saturday night to put the many pieces together. First we ventured outside in cold wind to spray paint their science boards.
Pap helped Bean put together a tiny model of a Langstroth hive for his display.
 Bugg went right to work gluing her topics to a pretty purple background.  Through the first week of spring break they had worked on word processing each explanation to follow the specific criteria given in the packet.
 Now it was time to put it all together and glue, glue, glue.

As she was gluing she realized she placed the "B" upside down. My little Pollyanna declared, "Oh well, it will just look like it blowed over."  Next she had to decide where to add her tissue flowers and where to put her purple glittery (um, germy)  handprints.
 Then she twirled about and exclaimed, "I LOVE it!!"
 Bean glued and glued and glued as well, but the whole time  said something like, "I hope this is the last science project I ever have to do!"
 We found some adorable wee bees that made the perfect addition to his model of the hive.
Lastly, we practiced presenting.  I am so very sorry I did not videotape Miss Bugg as her presentation grew in boldness and drama each time she did it. Then, as soon as mom and dad walked in, she was a shy little mouse.  I hope she is able to pull out at least a few of those moves in the classroom.
Bean really learned a lot about bees and both of them worked hard on their project.  
Let's just say, I was one exhausted Gramerly at the end of that evening.