You Need a Wet Brush!

Happy Monday! Last year, on my birthday I shared this post, where I share some of my favorite things. Those things remain my favorite things, this year, and probably forever. But, I’m dying to add a new item to the list….You know how when you try a new idea, or product that literally changes your life and you think, “why didn’t I know about this sooner?” , or “how have we been living without this?”  Like sliced bread right?! My new favorite thing is one of those things. This summer, I found The Wet Brush. Halleluia!

I’m not sure the science behind this brush, but it is far better than any brush I’ve ever used. Magic…science…whatever. I’m a believer. During the summer, we usually adopt the motto, “Summer Hair, Don’t Care.” for Carolynn’s long locks.

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Carolynn has long, curly hair and brushing out her hair after a swim, shower or bath has always involved tears. It would get so tangly after swimming, we would have to pull it up in a top knot (which she hates), or leave a limp pool pony tail until her next shower. Now, I keep a Wet Brush in our pool bag and brush her hair out with ease after each swim.

With The Wet Brush, she hasn’t shed a single tear, and hardly even a wince. It is actual, real life magic for less than $10.

You can buy one of your own original detangling brush, or you can buy one for use with blow drying (this is a pretty ombre version), or this one made for thick hair.

You may just want to go ahead and get the two pack of detangling brushes so you can have one for your bathroom and one for the pool/beach bag. I also keep this leave in conditioner by Aussie in our pool bag.

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Go get yourself one (or more!) of these brushes and you can thank me later. 🙂

Thanks for reading!

Steph

*I have not been paid for this review. It is my own humble, and honest opinion. I have attached the links to these products should you wish to purchase them. If you do decide to use my link to purchase one of these amazing brushes, I will receive a small portion of your sale. This is at no extra cost to you. Thank you!!

 

How to love your ugly light fixtures for less than $30!

I’ve mentioned before that we never wanted to build a house. It was not on either of our bucket lists, and the decision to build was only made because honestly, there wasn’t another reasonable choice. (You can read about the house already on property where we lived/camped during the building process here) We wanted to live on this ranch, to be good stewards of this property, and we wanted to be able to do that everyday. (Read my favorite post, How We Got Here for the full backstory)

When we realized that being here on this blessed property meant *gulp* we would have to build our house, we dreaded making all the choices that go along with a new build. Of course, it was mostly pleasant and like we always knew, it’s not really about the house and all it’s bells and whistles anyway.

Throughout the whole process, the only choices we made with true reluctance were our light fixtures. We just didn’t like any of them. Oh sure, you can have any light fixture in their whole showroom…..for thousands extra. Looking to keep a reasonable mortgage? You silly, you can only choose from the, “bug bowl collection”. Ahhh yes, crispy bugs in all my light fixtures totally fits my style. One in every room please!

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It’s especially appetizing to look up at all the crispy gnats, communally entombed above the place you eat. Mmmm. As a solution to this (complete first world) problem, for my dining room, I purchased 5 of these small lamp shades from Wal-Mart.

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Quick side note, Wal-Mart has really upped their game in the home decor department. If you’re looking for something for your home, looking at Wal-Mart is not as bottom of the barrel as your high school former self might believe. They even offer 2-day shipping, or ship to store if you order online. We ordered a full sized mattress and box spring from Walmart.com and it showed up at our front gate in 2 days. The world we live in!

I purchased my shades in store, and I believe I paid $4.88 each for them. If you order online, they’re only $3.29! If you have five lights like me, that’s less than $20 to change the whole look of that light.  Buy some here.

These are actual lamp shades, so they look like this inside.

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This worked with my light fixture since it matched up well with our lightbulbs. If you’re using chandelier/candelabra bulbs (they are pointed on top and look like a flame) then you may have a smaller spot to screw in your bulb. (don’t worry, there’s a solution for that!)

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That’s it! I think it makes a huge difference, and I like it so much better now. Plus, the added bonus of it being inexpensive and pretty darn easy.

If you’re looking to complete this project but have a smaller spot to screw in your bulbs (is there an actual term for that “spot”?) , you may need actual Chandelier Shades. The inside of those shades uses a piece that clips onto the light bulb. Here’s some linen, and burlap shades I like from Amazon. (click on photo for link)

                       

 

I also LOVE these from ShadesofLight.com. They come in 9 different colors, and are a little bit of a splurge at $19 each.

4" Horizontal Ticking Stripe Chandelier Shade navy

Now, I’m coming for this crispy bug filled, weird boob-looking entry light next:

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I just love using the ladder to scoop…err, wipe…out the bugs. (How can you clean those things?!) Who are we kidding, I never get out the ladder and this chore never gets completed. Welcome home, bugs!

I can’t wait to show you what we have planned for this light! We are still working on the logistics, but it involves a piece of a washing machine. Sounds crazy, but I think it just might work…..

I hope you can use this idea in your home to make the most of what you have! Please let me know if you try it out, I would love to see it!

Find your adventure,

Steph

 

Pesto is the Best-o!

How, oh how can it already be July? We have been having a fun, and busy summer so far! I overcame a fear of mine, and took the kids to Schlitterbahn, the so called, “hottest coolest time in Texas.” Although Brian and I had both been many times, I wasn’t looking forward to taking the kids. Lots of people, lots of water rushing around….Anyway, we had a really great time and it wasn’t at all what my overactive mom brain said it would be (drowning, kidnapping, loss of limbs, other assorted unthinkable tragedies)! We visitied my grandparents, spent a week at the lake, and got a new puppy!

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I always have some conflicting feelings about July. It’s summer, so I can’t be mad at it. It’s also my birthday month BUT, this is also the month where the ads on TV start telling you it’s time to shop for back to school. Why so soon? Let me enjoy my summer TV ad people. So rude.

One of the summer herbs we’re enjoying, and I’ve still got growing like crazy right now is basil, (We also have tomatoes and zucchinis and okra! Read about our garden in this post) and I really want to share with you a pesto recipe I’ve been making with all that basil. Want to feel like a real life farmer? Grow basil.

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See? You will be ready to quit your day job, put on some overalls and milk your own cows. Too much?? Well, at the very least, your gardening self esteem will be boosted,  big time. Anyone can grow this stuff and it’s so yummy on, and with, so many things. (Caprese ensalada anyone? Margherita pizza? YUMMM)

A great way to use basil, especially when you have lots, is to make pesto. Pesto goes great on chicken, in pastas, spread on warm slices of french bread, and my favorite way–on pizza. Forgo the sauce, spread the pesto on your crust and top with shredded chicken, or just veggies and cheese. This is my new favorite pizza for our Friday family night tradition: homemade pizza and movie nights. (A post on family pizza night coming soon!)

To make pesto, pick 2 packed cups of basil.

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Add 1/3 c pine nuts to basil and pulse. Then add 1/2 c parmesean cheese, and 2 tsp garlic (more or less, according to your taste).

(How do you like my “vintage” food processor?)

I get this bag of pine nuts from Costco:

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And yes, it is $19. Nine. Teen. American dollars. So, if you would rather not buy all this, I’ve seen recipes that substitute cashews or walnuts for the pine nuts. I haven’t tried it, so let me know if you do, I’de love to know how it turns out! It could save me hundreds.

Once you’ve combined your basil, garlic and nuts, put the lid on and slowly add 1/2 c of olive oil as your processor runs. Stop a few times to wipe down the sides with a spatula. Once it’s combined, taste and add seasoning as desired. I always add salt and pepper of course, but we also like to add jalapeno slices, pickled jalapeno juice, and/or red pepper flakes to make it spicy. Give it a few pulses if you add anything at the end.

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The pesto will keep well in the fridge for a week. Make sure to place a piece of plastic wrap on the top of the pesto before putting the lid on your jar or container. This will keep the air out and maintain freshness.

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I am a huge proponent of freezing things, so of course I also have some frozen. You can use ice cube trays to freeze smaller portions, or use a freezer safe jar or container.

We’ve had it on pizza, on pork chops, with veggies, on pasta, with chicken and as the sauce on a zucchini lasagna with sausage.

Here are a few other ideas I’de like to try, and for you to try at home:

Pesto hummus 

Pesto Roasted Brussel Sprouts

Pesto Egg-in-a-hole with Bacon

As always, I love to hear from you, so let me know if you try the pesto recipe! Thanks so much for stopping by!

_Steph

 

Garden Update: Summer 2018

Hi there! Long time no read huh?! We’ve been finishing the school year, and summer-ing it up over here at the Yellow House and although I have three different posts I’m working on (it is a creative junk drawer in my brain right now) in my drafts folder for the last month, I haven’t finished one of them….until now.

Before I share what’s going on in our garden-which we are VERY excited about-I want to share some other things I grew, and am VERY proud of.

Landon graduated from the sweetest little preschool of all time.

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He did so well in school this year. He had the best teachers, he learned so much, and I am confident he is ready for Kindergarten. We are so proud of him.

Also, he is currently in his awkward, unnatural smiling phase accompanied by goofy thumbs up. In every picture. It’s like a reflex now, it’s like he can’t help himself. *mom holds up her phone to take picture* = *goofy smile and thumbs up*. SO many things we’ll never understand.

AND, Carolynn finished First Grade.

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She is that kid that just does school. She likes learning, and wants to do well. I had to make her laugh for this picture because she is still residing in “awkward smile for posed photo phase”.

After her class party, we met daddy for lunch at one of their favorites places for Carolynn’s favorite food-burritos.

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This picture cracks me up every time. They are so goofy.

They smile all the time, I swear. Getting a smiling, serious picture from these two is akin to getting a picture of bigfoot, or a unicorn.

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There’s also this, which does capture Carolynn’s genuine feelings in the moment.

Oh well. I’ll play some sudoku, take Ginko Biloba. Maybe I’ll just remember their natural smiles. *sigh*

Anyway, we are so blessed with two great schools where we had another great year.

Since the title of this post is “Garden Update” I think I should probably get to that….I’m so excited to show you!

Back in the spring, I posted about our garden, (read it here) and how we (Brian and the kids) prepped it, planned it and planted it. Here’s a picture of the garden from that post. (we built the beds last year)

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These are our potatoes and onions.

And here’s the potatoes we’ve pulled up, and eaten since then! We’ve never grown potatoes, and it was so fun to pull up the plant and count how many spuds we’de grown.

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Another first, we grew cucumbers! We were so excited to see these beauties on the vine.

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We’ve picked two of them so far, and used them to make refrigerator pickles. We haven’t eaten one yet, and we are not so patiently waiting for them to be ready to eat in…32 hours. But who’s counting?

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We’ve also got lots of tomatoes coming in and I have many ideas for these tomatoes. My first idea is to EAT THEM. But also, freeze them, sauce, tomato jam, sun dried tomatoes and learning how to can/preserve them. I am nervous about the canning…but not the eating.

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Last fall, we had a random spaghetti squash plant come up in our compost. Carolynn with her blessed, childlike hopes, planted it in the garden and it actually produced several spaghetti squash. When we recently found another little sprout, we planted it and hereis it’s little baby. Hopes grow spaghetti squash. But we also water it and stuff.

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Brian recently put up this shade cloth to protect the plants from that scorching afternoon sun.

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In this bed, we also have onions, 4 okra plants, roma tomatoes, 2 green bean plants and two cucumber plants.

In the ground, we’ve got some tiny little melons growing. Look how cute:

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And some tiny zucchini:

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Like everything we’re trying to establish here, this season’s garden has been a learning experience. We have read a lot and tried a lot and we are still getting the hang of it. We’ve watered, and wiped off aphids, pulled weeds and walked through the garden everyday looking at each plant. There is such a joy, and personal satisfaction of caring for the plants that grow actual food.

We have made three batches of pesto (a pesto post-o is one of the above mentioned drafts I’m working on) from the basil we’ve grown in this garden:

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This bed also has cilantro, dill, rosemary and strawberries. We haven’t had a large strawberry harvest, but both kids have eaten their fair share of them plucked right off the plant.

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Having this land gives us the opportunity and space to have a garden, and having a garden is another way we can honor this land and be blessed by it.

Do any of you have a garden this summer? Anyone know how to can? Want to show me, or direct me to any good blogs on the subject? I’m ready to add another skill to my, “Adventure Life Resume”: “Master Canner”….Or maybe just, “Canner”…..Or “Can if she has to”.

Thanks for being here, and keeping up with our adventures! Always, always glad you’re here on my little blog, to follow along with our adventures.

Steph

 

 

The ONLY place you should be buying baskets, and a Dining room chair makeover

As I’ve shared before, I love finding thrifted treasures. And I may be biased, but I am sure that my local Goodwill store is the best Goodwill store there’s ever been.

I know there is a bit of an “ick” factor to using someone else’s old stuff, but besides the fact that most things can be washed or cleaned after you purchase, I love the unique look you can give your home with things you’ve repurposed. I often feel proud of how little I’ve paid for an item that I’ve been able to turn into something I really enjoy using in my decor.

Like this old tool box. (It was $8 in case you’re curious)

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That basket with the pillows is also from Goodwill.

Or this basket I use for my cook books:

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Friendly PSA: DO NOT buy baskets from anywhere that isn’t a Goodwill. It is a basket-a-palooza at that place. You can find any shape, size, and style of basket to fill any need you have. Laundry hampers, trashcans, decorative…the one pictured here was meant to hold a 9×13 dish. I have a basket of some kind at every door for shoes. All from Goodwill, all for less than $10, and likely less than $5.

My kids know better than to say they can’t find their shoes. If they’re not in a basket, you better keep it to yourself. I have set you up for success little people. Shoe. Baskets.

Also, lamps. Will you find the lamp of your dreams at Goodwill? Probably not. But I love the warm, cozy look of lamp light and for much cheaper than new, you can find many styles, colors and sizes of lamps any day at a Goodwill.

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My latest, and perhaps greatest find is a dining room table and four chairs. We have been on the look out for a new, rectangular table for our dining room. We have even discussed making one ourselves, which is still the plan, but for $150 and a little diy-ing these chairs went from someone else’s old stuff, to my new dining room set.

Here’s a look at their old seat cushions, with help from my awkwardly posed assistant.

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Here’s another, in case my adorable model threw you off a bit.

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Under the chair, there were 4 screws holding the cushion on. Unscrew each one, and set aside for when you’re ready to put it back together! Don’t forget where you put them. Just sayin’….I gave each cushion a wipe down with a damp, slightly soapy rag and sprayed with febreze before covering.
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Cut your fabric so you have 2-3 inches of border around the outside. I chose this tan ticking because, 1) I already had it and 2) ticking is classic and timeless, but mostly because I already had it. 🙂

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I started at the top with a staple right in the middle. This gave me some leverage to pull the rest of the fabric around. Don’t stress too much about the perfection of this first staple. You can go back and give it another tug and another staple if it needs it.
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Fold the corners, “gift wrap style” and staple. I kept a hammer close by to really ensure those staples were in good, and tight on the corners. Keep the fabric pulled as tightly as you can with all the staples following that first one. You don’t want it bunchy.
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My photographer, who is also my husband, is taunting me in this picture saying things like, “work it. work it. Nice stapling…” and things to that effect. He’s hilarious.
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This is a crucial step! Spray the living daylights out of your newly covered cushions with this  blessed stuff.  It seems too good to be true, but I can wipe off drips, drops and spots with a wet cloth and I’ve been really pleased with how clean the cushions have stayed. Buy some here.

 

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We’ve had these chairs for almost 2 months, and this is Landon’s seat. See what I mean about the Scotchguard?? Why haven’t I been Scotchguarding all the things??

There you have it! This project took less than 2 hours, and including the applying and drying of the Scotchguard spray, it took 2 days to finish. I am happy to give this table a new home here, at the Yellow House and make some happy meal time memories around it.

Do y’all shop at Goodwill, or other comparable thrift type stores? What are your favorite things to get there? Is the “ick” factor a dilemma for you? Love to chat with y’all about it.

I’m always so glad to have you here, thank you SO much for reading! -Steph

Pool side Reading List

People, people, we are SO close to the summer. So.close. We’ve got less than 30 days of school left (but who’s counting?) and the summer is calling to me. I love the summer with a big, big love. It’s my favorite season, by far. (I’ve already gone into the many reasons I love it, here, on this post , entitled, “Summer, I love you.”)

I’m ready for lazy mornings, longer days and the pool. That pool is my happy place. So many happy memories are made there. My great grandfather built this giant pool in 1960 for his two grown daughters, who swam for exercise. Like to swim laps, it’s a huge pool.

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I mean, come on. Ok, now ask me if I think you should get a pool…..Hell no. Unless you’re going to get a pool boy, in which case, go for it. BUT, since it’s pretty much a family heirloom I plan to enjoy it to the fullest. Which puts me here, doing this:

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In heaven, I will be by the pool. Reading, and probably eating Twizzlers.

As the summer gets closer, I’ve been putting together a list of books I plan to read, poolside of course, and want to share them with y’all! If you plan on reading anything other than my blog this summer (ha ha), I’de love to have you join me in reading one of these books and let me know what you think! Some of the books I’m listing are books from last summer’s reading list, and several books I haven’t read, and am looking forward to picking up.

Last summer, I read  America’s First Daughter, based on Thomas Jefferson’s daughter by Stephanie Dray and Laura Kamoie. I love historical fiction, and if you do too, this is a good choice.

I haven’t yet read, but am planning to pick up another by Dray, and Kamoie: My Dear Hamilton 

Also, Bear Town by Fredrik Backman

Another amazing read from Fredrik Backman and from last year’s Summer Reading List,  is A Man Called Ove

The Great Alone by Kristin Hannah

Also GREAT, by Kristin Hannah, and from last year’s Summer reading list, is The Nightingale. 

Let me know if you plan on picking up any of these books for your summer reading pleasure, and I’de love to chat! Let’s start a book club! What should we read first?

What are y’all planning to read this summer? Are you anxiously awaiting the summer season, like me?

Looking forward to hearing from you, thanks for reading!!-Steph

*I have attached the links to these products should you wish to purchase them. If you do decide to use my link to purchase one of my favorite things, I will receive a small portion of your sale. This is at no extra cost to you. Thank you!!

 

 

 

 

 

How to make a Haymaker

Happy Monday, my friends!

Apple Cider Vinegar is an old (like ancient Greeks old) household remedy for many things like sore throats, and upset stomachs. But, some have recently claimed the vinegar it contains, giving it it’s strong taste and smell, can help prevent cancer, or keep blood glucose under control. The science behind those claims is questionable, but at the yellow house, we like to sip on something called, “haymakers” a few times a week anyway. You can make a pitcher full, or just a glass at a time, which is what we usually do. If you’re looking for a drink that’s good for your gut and another calorie free alternative to water that may have some health benefits, here’s the step by step recipe.

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We buy our ACV from Costco. Any will do, just make sure it includes, “the Mother”.  You can buy Apple Cider Vinegar on Amazon if you’re into groceries on your doorstep.

 

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I use 1/4 cup per glass. But, that’s very strong. You may want to start with half that, or less.
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Add honey to sweeten, and cut the strong vinegar flavor. I add 1 tsp, but that’s to 1/4 cup ACV. Adjust according to your taste. Be sure to add the honey, and combine, before you add the ice.

Fill your glass with either water, or tea. I like either, but Mr. Adventure Life prefers his with tea. I’ve tried mine with green tea, black tea, and plain sparkling water.

Add ice and sprinkle with ground ginger. Stir.

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You can buy the best ground ginger here!

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Let me know if you try it, I would love to know what you think, and what you use ACV for–salad dressings? Cleaning? Drinking?

I hope the weather where you are is as gorgeous as it is here in central Texas. It is sunny, warm perfection here. (*cue the angels singing!)

Go enjoy your haymakers outside on this BEE-U-TIFUL day! Thanks for reading!  -Steph

 

 

 

Ranch life update: the dirty birds.

Hello. It is day 37 of our captivity ….with the birds. At this point, they have lived in a cardboard box, a large tote, two large totes, and now they are living inside a pen with a tarp under it.

It won’t be too much longer until they can move out to their cute little coop full time, but until they get all their feathers, they can’t stay out overnight.

But, while inside, the ducks make bubbles in the water, flinging it everywhere. The chickens fly out of the pen. I’ve found two plops of poop on the floor, one of which had been ground into the rug, which I thought was in the “safe zone”.

It’s white. of course it is. There is no safe zone. The guest room’s gone to the birds.

Speaking of poop, they do it a lot.

Probably my biggest complaint is what I’ve been referring to as, “the chicken dust”. It is a layer of dander, feathers, fuzz and just…what seems like dust. But from the birds. It is grossing me out. And no, it’s not just “regular dust”, I’m not an animal. THEY are. It is covering everything in that room, which is filled with my great grandparent’s (as in: family heirloom/antique) master bedroom set. But, without a garage, that’s where they had to go and that’s where they’ll stay for a bit longer.

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The “chicken dust”. You can see where I set my phone down to draw that smily face. Blech.

The coop is looking good, and they do spend a lot of the day in there. Brian planned out, and perfectly executed his plan for a little chicken door.

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We set up an electric fence so that they can roam in the yard and be safe from predators. Obviously, we’de love for them to roam completely freely, but that’s just not possible out here.

We let them out into their fence shortly after setting it up, and the naughtiest of the chickens, who B and I call, “StacyTracy” (because we can’t tell Stacy and Tracy apart) just hopped her little self right through the fence. Last week, wicked little StacyTracy scratched the dickens out of my finger. Think like a papercut , but x10.

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So, the fence does shock you if you touch it, and will keep predators away, we hope. But for now, they’re still too small/too naughty and can’t be left out there alone. You can see the nesting boxes well in this picture. We made five, one box for 2-3 chickens, so we have room to grow our flock.

Here they are watching, while we were finishing up the coop.

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The fence is easily moveable, so once those chicas start laying eggs, we’ll rearrange it so that we can get into the nests. We built the nesting boxes so we can open up and grab the eggs from the outside.

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While I do complain about living with chickens and ducks (Joey and Chandler would never have actually enjoyed living with two full grown birds in an apartment. I know this now.) I do also realize the sweet memories we’re making for the kids, and ourselves.

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A sweet boy and his duck, Dumpling. (Every.pair. of his pants looks like that.)

Getting chickens and ducks, building a coop, living with birds, and one day collecting and eating fresh eggs are another adventure for us and part of our big plan to embrace the “country life”.

While I am a clean person, living with dirty birdies, even I can see the value of this phase. I am looking forward to those eggs ….and the hella deep cleaning I’m going to give that room in a few weeks.

Always, thanks for reading! I love that you’re here for another adventure! -Steph

Ranch life update: the garden

Good morning! While winter was a time of planning, and resting, spring however, has been off to a busy start! We are finishing up our chicken coop and run, planting our garden and building a shop/garage. In this post, I’de love to share with you all that’s going in the garden.

Before spring began, we planted seeds to grow inside until warmer days came. They lined our kitchen windows and got lots of spritzing and encouraging words from us until last weekend where they got their place in our garden.

While the seedlings grew their roots indoors, Brian set up some irrigation for the gardens and he, and C planted potatoes and onions outside.

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While I was away on a girl’s trip, Brian and the kids pulled up A LOT of weeds and built up some rows behind the raised beds. We are planting some of the same things both in the ground rows, and in the raised beds. We’re interested in seeing where the plants thrive most. All our soil has some of our homemade compost added (read about how we made our compost bins, and some other projects here), with homemade cedar mulch (read about how we made our mulch here) on top.

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Here are the seedling babies, all grown up and ready to go outside. Most of them are tomatoes-cherry, 4th of July, and roma- and some are jalapenos. The seeds we have going directly in the ground are: okra, squash, cucumbers, green beans and melons.

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In another bed, we tilled up the soil, added compost, manure and some fresh dirt. We planted: basil, cilantro, strawberries, catnip, rosemary, dill and garlic chives. The strawberries were sampled, and the cilantro was sampled/eaten to the ground by the cows. Ugh. Our fence is easily compromised. But, the strawberry plants have recovered, and now they’re just being sampled by us. We have plans for a permanant fence -coming soon. (Read about how the cows convinced us to put up a fence)

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This is in the backyard, right below the porch.

Something we keep learning, like death and taxes, your plans WILL change. The weather will force you to delay, your tools will be broken, you don’t have that one thing you need, you measured twice but still didn’t get it quite right. It’s difficult sometimes (especially for two type A people …ahem) to roll with these punches. As a parent, it’s been important to model that that’s. just. life. (I am not always a great model for this, or for many of my other faults for that matter.) We are thankful to have these opportunities to improve this place for our family and hopefully instill the values we hold dear.

I recently found a list of “ranch goals” in a large binder of my grandma’s things. She passed away almost 14 years ago, and here we are on this ranch, trying to be good stewards and leave it better than we found it, and here are her words inspiring me, from maybe 20 years ago? 25? It’s typed on a typewriter for goodness’ sake. There were several, but here’s one that really got me:

“Quality of life…Our Earth, ranch and community to be better for our having been here.”

I have chills. In this season of hard work here at the yellow house, and on this ranch, these words from the past have been a beautiful and inspiring reminder of our purpose. It is our great pleasure to be here. To work hard and leave it, “better for our having been here.” I couldn’t have said it better myself.

I hope your spring is off to a great start! Are y’all planting gardens? What are you growing?

Posts coming soon about the progress on the coop, raising the chicks and ducklings and the building of our shop/garage! See you then, I hope!

Thanks for reading!  -Steph

 

 

 

What I learned from the Spring 10×10 Challenge

I did it! I wore only ten items (including shoes!) for 10 days. (See what I picked and more info about the challenge in this post)

I mixed and matched, added accessories and have 10 awkward photos of myself to prove it. See??

 

I appreciated the experience and it helped me realize some things about the way I should keep my closet year round:

First of all, I need no new clothes. I have enough. With only 8 clothing pieces and 2 pairs of shoes to choose from, getting dressed everyday was a cinch. No pacing my closet and sighing, before finally deciding on something. All my outfits were put together, and honestly, having less pieces to work with made it less pressure. I packed for a weekend trip and it was the easiest packing a bag has ever been. One day, to avoid wearing almost the exact same thing a second time, I added an old belt of my gramdmother’s. I’ve had it for years and never wear it. I got several compliments on it, and it changed up wearing the same shirt and jeans for the second time in 10 days. I was encouraged to get creative with what I already have and if you’ve read any of my posts before, you know the joy I get from using what I already have. (I did that for my Fall Decorating Challenge, and for Carolynn’s Office)

Secondly, keep what realistically works for you. I guess I’m not a skirt person. In theory, yes, I like skirts a lot. I think they’re cute and springy and can keep be versatile enough to be casual or dressy. BUT, I wore mine twice only, one of which was Easter Sunday and the other I MADE myself because I knew I needed to work it in. My day to day life just isn’t too skirt friendly, so it just didn’t seem to make sense most days. It was cute, but not that practical for me.

I’m fine wearing jeans everyday. They fit my lifestyle and darnit, I just like them. For the challenge, I chose a pair of boot cut jeans, but I wished I had picked my skinny jeans. The skinnies would have been more classic and I just like the fit better.

If overalls are wrong, I don’t want to be right. I did choose overalls as one of my pieces, maybe not the most practical choice, but I actually have no regrets. I like them, and they went with more than one top so I got two wears out of them. It’s only been two days since the challenge ended, and I’ve already worn them again.

Birkenstocks are still my favorite shoe of all time. I wore them 9/10 of the challenge days and probably would have anyway. I’m not a “shoe person”, but I LOVE these shoes.

Lastly, go with neutrals. one of the tops I chose had embroirdered shoulders and a tie front. It is less of a neutral, which I chose intentionally, to keep boredom at bay. In hindsight, another neutral top would have been a better choice. I only wore my embroirdered tee (It’s SO cute, you can find the link in this post) once. It didn’t lend itself to the whole idea of the 10×10, which is, creatively mixing and matching. It would have been too obvious if I wore it twice because it just isn’t neutral enough.

Overall, I didn’t find it too difficult to wear the same things for 10 days, and no one ever said, “didn’t you just wear that?” Which was actually something I wondered about. Turns out, no one probably noticed, and much more likely, no one actually cares.

Did anyone else take the 10×10 challenge? What do you think about a minimalist stlye wardrobe? Are you a person who needs lots of options, or do you prefer the simplicity of fewer clothes?

Thanks for reading!! Steph