Tasha Tudor Day 09

Tasha Tudor Day is annually, on the 28th of August, which was her birthday.

Tasha Tudor is a fairly new discovery for me. As a matter of fact, I read a book about her garden a very long time ago, but I just didn't "get" it, and sent it back to the library, forgetting all about Tasha.

But recently, I came across the book again, as I was preparing my own garden. This time, I was hooked -- by her garden, her lifestyle, and Tasha herself. What a singular person Tasha was!

When I discovered that today was the anniversary of her birthday, it seemed like a good time to help the children experience a little of the Tasha magic.

In the morning, after breakfast, Daddy took the children for a long walk in the woods.

While they were gone, I ate my breakfast of homemade yogurt, homemade granola, and strawberry jam the neighbors harvested and canned. I brought out the tablecloths and picked what seems to be the last straggly flowers of the season. Not much to look at, but we'll miss them when they leave us in the fall, just around the corner!


When the family arrived back home, we ate a light lunch of Cream of Chicken Soup, Cheddar Cheese Rounds (Tasha's receipts,) grapes, and orange juice.

Then we set to work on making some small soft furnishings for the dolls' house. Roks (5) learned to "embroider" a pretty tablecloth for the dolls' table, and the older two children and I made tiny braided rugs to keep their feet warm.



Daddy and Bert worked outside in the garden, tidying up and weeding around the flowers. Roks joined in as soon as he was finished stitching and fringing his table cloth.

They have a lovely pumpkin growing in spite of devastating bug/fungus attack, and had three watermelons.



We thought it would be a great idea to let the chicken ladies into the garden, to eat the grass growing up around the end-of-summer-season veggies. They did do a lovely job of eating lots of clover and grass -- but also helped themselves to several cucumbers, quite a lot of celery, and two of the watermelons.

Daffodil, a Buff Orpington
Bessie, a Plymouth Rock Barred, and Ruffian, an Araucana.
Tigger, an Araucana
Truckster and Tigger, side by side -- Araucanas.
We have two more Buff Orpingtons, another Araucana and another Plymouth Rock Barred.

We collected up the eggs, one blue, one green, and three brown -- and took them inside, to make a tasty custard for dinner dessert. We collected a huge brown egg a couple of days ago, and we used it too. When we broke it open, it had two full-size yolks. Good work for a young chicken lady.

In the late afternoon we had a small tea-break, with homemade hot chocolate and marshmallows. And we worked on our projects, finally getting them finished a little bit too late for mamma to make dinner. So we had fried chicken and mashed potatoes and green beans, but not homemade. :-)

After dinner, we ate the silky-smooth custard (Tasha's receipt,) courtesy of the lovely chicken ladies, topped with a drizzle of home-produced maple syrup from our neighbors' maple trees.

Tasha Tudor Day was quite a lot of fun for everyone.

But oh! the house is messy!

Why I am Not Impressed...

...with having to ask the State's permission to homeschool:


Read and weep.

Maybe Ohio should be minding its own business on the subject of education.


Today I get to put together all the documents necessary to beg permission from the powers-that-be to educate my own children in my own home, for another year.

The longer I homeschool, the more ludicrous this process seems.

FWIW, they both scored in the 99th percentile in their standardized testing this year.

My just-turned-5yo will homeschool kindergarten also. He can already read, add, subtract, and do all sorts of other kiddie tricks, so I think he will do well. I don't have to beg permission to educate him formally until next year.



It's the little darling's first birthday.

My Katybelle, our golden ray of sunshine. :-)

You see, this is the thing...

When you hold the beliefs that we do -- that children are a blessing -- and you aren't just paying lip service to that idea, but actually living as though you believe it, it can be hard to be "real" about the difficulties you face as a mother of many, or going through another pregnancy when you just did that.

For instance, at church. We already have the most children of all the families there. Now that the news is out that we are expecting yet another, (and it did spread like wildfire), we are under (kind, but evident) scrutiny. How can I go to church and expect anyone to support me in my difficulty, when the answer is so simple as "stop having babies?" I have to put on the happy face, don't I? Many situations are like this. When you are a Christian in front of non-Christians, you have to be upbeat and nice all the time, right? Otherwise, what does that say about your faith? But if you are having difficulty or finding the road rough, no-one in a church would say to you, "stop being a Christian."

Easier isn't better. The rewards are in the perseverance and in the trust that develops between you and God. Oh, and in the fact that you have a lovely crowd of children circling your dinner table for years, and making their parents and grandparents proud! But it would be nice to not have to put on the happy face when you could use some support instead. It would be nice if people -- family, friends and church members -- could truly understand.

And I'm really, really thankful for the ones that do. :-)

**Added: Renee asked me a question in the comments that I've been mulling over. I would be the last person in the world to say that I have everything figured out, when it comes to bearing and raising children. Fortunately, today Stacy McDonald of Your Sacred Calling posted something very wise on her blog with regards to this matter. At some time, I'd like to do a discussion on passages in the Bible which clarified to me what Christian parenting and God's view of His people having children is all about. Until then, this is a very good post: How do You View Children?

About this break...

I haven't posted for long time, because I've been sort of uninterested in everything. I've found it hard to get going or excited about anything. I suppose I've been a little depressed and, no doubt, hormonal. :-)

This baby is a blessing. :-) But I will admit to you that I was not wanting to be pregnant yet. I was wanting to have a breather between nursing and pregnancy, and some time to get my body back into shape. I am one of those women who can not take weight off while nursing. As a matter of fact, I usually gain weight after giving birth, and this past round of nursing has been no different. I ended up gaining another 19lbs after Baby K's birth. It's dismal. Plus, I've now had three babies pretty close together (the oldest of the three just turned 5) and I've just not had the time or ability to deal with it all physically.

Seriously. It's been a pretty wacked-out few years for me.

So. I was really *hoping* for a break. Really.

The beginning of this pregnancy was not the best. We took a trip to Amish country and got a nasty case of food poisoning. About a week into the pregnancy. It took me at least a month to fully get over that (anything that messes with my digestive system takes me a really. long. time. to get over. IBS. Yuck.) Then I found out I'd been pregnant the whole time. I mean, some things just are hard to get around mentally, you know?

Then when I discovered I was expecting another...well, all those stressful thoughts went through my head. The endless doctor visits, the stupid things that show up on ultrasounds, the doctors messing around in ways they don't need to, useless tests, running here and there, being told what to do, or not being believed when you know things aren't right, induction, hospitals, insurance, paying off what the insurance doesn't cover, engorgement, nursing, newborn sleepless nights...oh, I am just not ready to do all that again. We just did that.

I still have two in diapers.

My baby is just about to turn one year old.

I have three formal homeschoolers this year.

Swine flu.

I mean, seriously. I wanted a break.

This is where it's at though. We are creating an eternal soul. We try not to mess with that process as much as possible, because we don't believe we are qualified to do so. I mean, if the doctor said to me, "Having another baby would kill you," well, that would be about the only reason we'd be really trying to NOT have another one. Otherwise, well, there just isn't a really good reason not to. We have been blessed with everything we could possibly need or want, to have more babies.

Anyway, I've gotten some info from some dear friends about a much more mommy-friendly doc here in town, and I'm going to try to see him. He works with midwives, and is very home-birth friendly. (Homebirth. Something I never thought I'd ever do. But if the hospitals are chock-full of swineflu patients in Feb/March, there is NO WAY I'm going there to have a helpless little baby. There are no birthing centers in this city. Not one. The only choices are home or hospital. )

Hoping I can get in to see this guy. I hear he is in high demand.

I guess that's where it all is at right now. I'm resigned to this pregnancy -- oh, of course I am excited to have another dear little one! -- but, the whole pregnancy/birth/newborn thing. Well, I'm wrapping my brain around it. Bear with me. I'm just being real here.


I know, it's been a long long time. I just...sort of lost momentum. Of course, the momentum was lost around the time that I became aware that I was expecting baby number six, so I do hope you will forgive me.

We are all doing fine. Hope you are all doing fine too. :-)
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