One Big Adventure
An opportunity to log in some of the thoughts and activities of our homeschooling family of eight. We love books and good food and aspire to a Christ-centered, multi-generational, agrarian life.

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Bits and pieces

It seems so much has been happening around here and yet, as I sit down to write, I have to really work to remember what I was planning to write about!

It has been pretty hot (upper 90s, low 100s), but we have a very effecient and effective air conditioner. Our wonderful friends and hospitable hosts, the Clayton's, whom I hope to introduce you all to some day (I know I've said that before...) let us buy them an above ground pool as a small thank you gift for their hospitality. Of course, we enjoy the pool too and it helps with keeping cool. It has been a great motivator for some who needed to do some hot outside work!

We have gotten some rain. Things have greened up nicely, but we are still behind. I am no longer sure by how much.

The person who surveyed our land hadn't actually completed the survey when we started clearing for our house location. The 'cut' he had made through the trees didn't look right to us and things seemed smaller than the plat showed. Vern and Owen did some measuring and then Vern called the surveyor. It took a while before he actually told Vern he had more work to do on our land. But now he is done and the lines he has cut make much more sense and are much closer to where we thought they would be. I'm not sure when we should get back over there to mark the house site.

Last night, one of the men from church told Vern he had two trailer loads of scrap wood that Vern was welcomed to. Today, he and Owen are running back and forth to town to pick up the trailers, bring them here to unload them and return them to town. Vern says just four of the boards make it worth his while to make the drives. If he doesn't use them for chicken pens of some sort, they may give him a decent start on a barn.

Today, we almost have James back up to his regular feeding schedule. We are mixing the blackstrap molasses into his formula, which he gets over a little longer time, and we cut back some--thanks for the thoughts, Mom. We are actually kind of catching our breath today, although there is plenty to do.

Tomorrow, we have an appointment in Macon to take James to meet a new pediatrician who was very highly recommended to us by a family from church here. We are looking forward to meeting him as it seems the Lord went before us and prepared the way--we sure hope so. It is important for James to have a doctor here to follow him and become famaliar with him as we go through this time of treatment because, as hard as it is to believe right now, things will eventually slow down and we will need to see James' pediatrician more than his oncologist. Dr. Keller thinks it is a really good thing to be establishing that relationship now. Having had a great pediatrician for James in Minnesota, I can appreciate his thoughts.

I am trying, in vain it seems sometimes, to get hold of a sales rep from a large company that sells food processing supplies and equipment. They carry a stapler (and the staples) that works great to seal a shrinkwrap bag around our chickens. We have such a stapler that we purchased in Minnesota and we know other chicken growers that like the bags and would like to have such a stapler, but they won't sell to individuals, only to 'distributors'. I am trying to find out if they will sell staplers and staples to us that we could 'distribute' to small chicken farmers like us. Getting a call returned is like pulling teeth and I'm not having any luck, so far, finding another company who sells it.

James has gotten most of his old smile back--he still has a little of the palsy on his left side. He is getting some toehead peach fuzz on his little head (which probably won't last too much longer after he begins this next round of chemo). He is back to bear crawling on all fours. He pulls himself up to standing and sometimes cruises the furniture a little. I think he has a ways to go to regain the strength in his legs and trunk and the stamina he will need for walking, but the more normal he can be, the better. Before, we had to have someone sitting with him all the time to be a comfort, now we need to have someone sit with him during a tube feeding or he tries to 'climb' down to play. He doesn't have 'steroid face' anymore, but he'll be getting 21 days of steroids or so again starting July 5th.

As grateful as we are to our splendid hosts, we all yearn to have our own place. But we are also very thankful for the fellowship, rest and 'burden-sharing along this road we are travelling with James. I can't imagine being totally on our own just now and yet, it is overwhelming at times to think of all James has to go through and building a home, establishing a homestead (making it produce things for us to eat and sell), and Vern starting a new job... all in addition to the 'regularly scheduled' activities of a homeschooling household of eight.

Thanks for checking on us, praying for us and enduring my spotty, rambling posts. Please let us here from you when you have a chance. Sometimes it seems like I am hosting my own one way conversation!

Love, Stephanie

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