Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Let Summer Begin!

Here is one of our ladies coming back to the hive yesterday. After a busy day of getting pollen (you can see the bags of pollen on her back legs), she came back to the hive. The bees have been an amazing experience...just watching them has been so much fun. Our West hive has been doing really well...lots of good stuff going on. The East hive is struggling after being attacked by ants that first week. We are pretty sure that the queen is dead, so Matt put a new frame of bees in this weekend, hoping that they will rise up a new queen. So, perhaps there will be a coronation going on this week and we wouldn't even know it :)

Yesterday, we set up our new pool. Our three youngest couldn't wait to get in the pool. They spent most of the afternoon getting in and out of the pool. The day was perfect weather...not too hot and no rain, which was originally predicted. We were tempted to go to the beach, but the kids had burns on their backs, so we decided to give them a rest from the sun all day. Thankfully, we have our big oak tree in the front giving lots of shade.



Matt was grilling away yesterday afternoon. We had an impromptu picnic to celebrate memorial day. We had friends come over and it was quite an enjoyable afternoon. And Matt did a fabulous job grilling some great food.





Monday, May 30, 2011

Birthday Memories

Here is our boy...holding his #4 card, given to him from Grammy. He loved that when he opened it up it played music. Still can't believe he is four already!

Blowing out his candle on his "robot" cake.



Judah super excited about his gift from William...his own box of Hot Tamales. William bought a box for himself too! Judah later declared the Hot Tamales, "spicy." I thought it was an odd choice...I think William was thinking of his favorite, not Judah's.





Posing for the camera. Judah asked for a "robot" cake...we will forever remember that Judah is our "BeBot."







The four little kids...hanging out at the beach yesterday. To celebrate his birthday we spent the afternoon at the beach. The kids had such a great time!









Judah blowing out his candle at breakfast time. As our tradition for the Reynolds Nation, each kid gets to pick out their favorite sweet for breakfast. I have made cake, pies, donuts, monkey bread...you name it, I have made it. Yesterday, we picked up donuts for Judah, and sang him a song. Happy Birthday baby boy!!!


*sorry about the mix-up with the flow of pictures...blogspot switched them around and I didn't have enough time to upload them again.











Sunday, May 29, 2011

Can it be 4 years?

Can it be 4 years already? Since my little munchkin came to be? Happy Birthday to the sweetest of boys...my baby boy, Judah David. Four years ago, about this time, I woke up and my water broke..and that was the beginning of this tremendous journey
Gosh, what can this mama say about my boy? So much. He is all giggles, and curls...laughter and screams...pure delight and love. He is Mr. Independent. He is my alpha-child...demanding and stubborn. He runs the other kids...he is the true leader. It's funny...birth order didn't rule my family...he is in Charge. His personality reminds me a lot of myself. Very strong and persevering! He look totally like his daddy...except the curls that just won't go away. I prayed for one little boy with curly hair...and I got one.
When I look at him it makes my heart skip a beat. I am so blessed to be his mama. I love every moment with him...even when he is being head-strong and demanding. God made him with a purpose (just like all of my kids). I am excited to see how God shapes and molds him. Happy Birthday baby boy. Your mama loves you!

Friday, May 27, 2011

Proud of my Boy!!!

Here he is!!!! My Joshie, my pookman, all grown up. This is him this evening...the night of his graduation. I can't believe he is this old. I remember him waving to me on the day of my graduation...he was only 6 months old, sitting on my mom's lap. I still remember calling him on the first day of Kindergarten...and now he is done. Sorry about the unclear picture...but I wanted to post a picture of him on his big night. Funny thing, he looks exactly like my dad, from a photo I saw of him at his graduation in 1963.



On the way...it has been a long haul, but he completed the task. Josh is so brilliant...he has the world at his fingertips. Excited to see what he does with his future!!!!





Gratitude Friday

Haven't had a gratitude Friday in a long time...feel the need for it this morning. Posting a picture of my two nieces on the day of Victoria's graduation on Wednesday (Victoria on left, Emily on right).

1. Thankful for a God who comforts, loves and wraps his arms around us.

2. Thankful for Facebook...I know, kind of weird...but how else would I see instant pictures of a cousin on her way to prom in New York (1200 miles away).

3. Thankful for a terrific husband who works so hard and perseveres.

4. Thankful for my home and all the provision that is here.

5.Thankful for great kids...with all their craziness, fun, and loudness. I am blessed.

What are you thankful for this morning? Take a moment to think.





Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Traveling Lady

I thought I would post a picture of my mom from today. She just landed in Tucson, Arizona this afternoon and she sent this picture to me. She flew a long way to see her first grandchild graduate from high school. Victoria Warnock, my niece, will be graduating tomorrow, in the top of her class. Already accepted to one of the state schools in Arizona (where it is cheaper to go to school) and ready to fly. My mom will be there for two days and then she will be off to Dayton, Ohio...to see her next grandchild graduate from high school. Joshua Logan will be graduating there...which is amazing to me, since he attended my graduation, just a babe...so many years ago. After a few days in Ohio, she will be back in Florida. It will be a whirlwind of a trip...we are just thankful that Victoria and Josh didn't graduate on the same day :)

Season Complete



We made it through our first soccer season with William. We made plans during our family meeting for the 2011 vision for William to play soccer. It was his first sport and we felt like it was the perfect time for him to participate in a group sport. Any younger in age, I feel like the kids have way too many breakdowns on the field because they can't handle it emotionally.

We told him weeks before we signed him up and he was ecstatic! He loves to be outside playing and this was a great opportunity. When we went to our meet the coach meeting in March, he held my hand so tightly...my little boy isn't too grown up yet. Anyway, he had a great season. He did really well considering he hasn't played in any group sports and has never gone to any type of school (including preschool). He wasn't the "top boy" on his team, the Dolphins, but I believe he was most improved. He at first was almost afraid of the ball during the game, and by the last game he was moving quite freely. I am so proud of him. At bit of money and a little time (lots of one on one time too, since I took him to his games by myself) was worth every bit. My favorite thing had to be that William always talked about his trophy. He couldn't wait to get it...he talked about it continuously. It was so funny. I think he was anticipating a feeling of accomplishment. So, here you see a picture of my special boy, holding his trophy proudly.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Yogurt Making

Now that we have our new goat Doby, we have a ton of milk in the house. And we have to find ways to use it...besides the usual, drinking and baking. Matt bought a yogurt maker for me about two years ago...I have used it, but with Milk so expensive, it really wasn't cost effective. Well, I am so glad he bought it for me. I am making yogurt every other day now...it takes about 1/2 gallon, which is how much milk Doby is producing per day. Then I throw it in the blender with some ice, fresh fruit and honey...perfect smoothie. I am experimenting with different flavors to see what the kids like. It has been fun, and what a simple breakfast to make for the kids, especially as we go into the hot season.

Here is the blueberry smoothie I made the other day. The kids drank these down rather quickly!



Thursday, May 19, 2011

It's A Party!

Delivered by the faithful USPS...all made it and were thriving. I think they were ready to get out of the box. I am sure a few were asking, "is this our new home?" :)

Under the big light and running around like crazy. "We are free, we are free!"



A chick party at that....got a call from the post office early this morning...6:30 to be exact. Our chicks had arrived and they were ready for pick-up. We ordered our chicks (laying hens) over a month ago...and we have been waiting and preparing for them since. We have built a new chicken pen...since our last one was broken into so many times by raccoons and they tore our chickens apart. So, it was time for a new pen and a whole new batch of chicks. Matt made it into a fortress (I will post a picture in the next few weeks)...and of course with the size of fortress he made has made it considerably heavy. We will see how it goes?!

So, in 6 months we will have our eggs back, thank goodness. Our property doesn't seem as farm-like without our chickens. So, hooray for our little golden nuggets!

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Quick, Run Outside!

I had to post a picture of the shuttle taking off from Cape Canaveral on Monday. For years, we have watched the shuttle take off on the television. We like to see the rockets rumble, and the engines push fire out...but then we have the privilege to run outside and watch it streak across the sky. It's one of my favorite memories with the kids...Quick, run outside, I would yell. Then we would wait for the fireball streaking across the sky, and then for the earth to shake. Sadly, there will only be one more shuttle going off...and I hope that the memories made will stay with my kids.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Milk...It Does A Body Good



I had to post the picture...our first quart of milk that we got from our new milking goat, Doby. She arrived yesterday and was immediately put on the milking table. How awesome! She is incredibly sweet and mild mannered...we were blessed by our friends at ZipTie Ranch to sell her to us. Our other goats were not overly excited to have a new friend, but within another week they will all be fast friends.


The past two weeks have been busy around here...two bee hives and now a milking goat. We definitely feel like our dreams are coming true...a lot of hard work, faith, love and unity!


Sunday, May 15, 2011

Capture This



I took this picture while I was sitting in the middle of our property. It couldn't get much better than this...84 degrees, 42% humidity, blue skies with big puffy white clouds. And the best part, our children all around us...just being together. Be together today...it's worth every moment!

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Blooming Five



I thought I would post a picture of my 5 flowers...each of my kids gave me one on Mother's Day. Chosen individually, and now still being displayed on my kitchen table. As I look at the flowers, it brings me such joy. My little blossoms growing up and blooming...to become what God wants for them. It's an exciting process, but at the same time a bit frightening.

Busy week we just came out of. Our bees have been here for a week, and Matt has been fretting over them way too much. Rightly so though...a lot of investment has been involved with these bees...time and money. We had a major attack of ants mid week and lost a couple hundred bees. I think we have been able to get ahead of them, but it has been a bit nerve wracking. The funny thing, which I didn't expect, was how much I love just watching them. They are amazing to watch...diving down from the sky to the hive....coming back loaded with pollen. It has been incredible. Another moment to be thrilled with the Lord's majesty.

We are preparing for a milking goat to be coming tomorrow...her name is Doby and we are so excited. We will have fresh milk every day here now. It is so awesome to see our dreams becoming a reality.

Two kids, William and Esther, finished their school year this week. They both finished ahead of schedule and thriving in their abilities. It has been a great year. Even with me working, we have been able to get so much done. Bryn and Caleb have two more weeks to go...and then summer will officially start. Even though the year is almost done, I have already been looking into next year's curriculum. I am changing everything, and moving over to Tapestry of Grace. It is a literature based curriculum that I will do with all my kids. They will just be working on different levels...which will save me so much time, considering last year I was teaching Early American History and Ancient History at the same time...it's hard to go from Pharaoh to George Washington in one swoop. So, I am super excited about that.

The heat is hitting hard the past few days, though overall the month of May has been quite pleasant. I signed William and Judah up for swim lessons yesterday...William is swimming okay, but needs to be strengthened. And this will be Judah's first lessons. It's amazing how many hours over all the years I have spent at the pool doing swim lessons! And Bryn is doing early-swim team this month in preparation of swim team this summer...she is trying to get back into shape. And Esther will be joining her in the summer. Caleb, who still doesn't enjoy the water, will be hanging out at the pool with us. Each year he gets more comfortable with the pool, which is encouraging.

Next week we get 20 chicks delivered...our next batch of laying hens. And then hopefully in July we will order a batch of meat birds. Normally, summer time is slow for us on the farm, but this year may be a bit different. I guess that's all for now...have a great weekend!

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Pleased to Meet You!

Here is the newest member of the Reynolds Nation. His name is Edward...a three year old pug from a rescue group. I know, the name is a bit regal, and every time I go to call him I yell out the name George. Not sure why? Maybe from my love of British history ;0
We got our first pug almost six years ago...our beloved Mia. She really has been the best dog. Loves us to bits and we love her the same. Other than a love for moving vehicles, she is superb. So, why rock the boat? Why bring in another dog? Edward needed a home. His foster parents needed to bring in another pug with far greater need...and so he found us. He is easy going...loves the kids, even Judah smashing his face into his. I think we may have found a perfect match for the Reynolds Nation. So, take a moment and welcome the newest member to the family.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

The House That Built Me



I got the idea of this post from my favorite blog (I know, you know that already)...over at owlhaven. It struck me in the heart in the right way. Though I live in Florida now, my home and my heart will always be in New York. Yeah, you have heard it before...once a New Yorker, always a New Yorker. I feel like I am out of my element. Like something is missing from me. I push that aside though, and know that God knows where I should be.

This picture is of the house that I grew up in...in Poughkeepsie, New York. North of the city and all the way east in the state of New York. President Roosevelt is from this part of New York...the good, old Hudson Valley. I took this picture two years ago when I was in New York. It was the second time I had seen MY house in over twenty years. First time...with just Matt and the second time I got to bring my kids. They sat on the porch that I had sat on a million times. They saw the second story window of my parents' room where my dog had slid out of one icy morning. They saw the beautiful oak tree that I used to gaze at from my second story room...with my pretty strawberry shortcake sheets and spread that my mom had made me (they were way to expensive to buy, so she sewed them herself she told me years later)...in my canopy bed that every girl dreams of.

My kids ran in the backyard...down the hill that I had sledded down a hundred times...we saw the actual rose bushes that my mom planted in 1980...still thriving and so mature. The owners told me that they still get strawberries on that hill...from the same plants my mom planted...we used to steal them as we would pass by.

A few things have changed...the garage has been rebuilt...gone are the memories of my friends and I making a Pinkies club, from Grease the movie. The old coal stove is gone. Gosh, I remember the truck pouring in the coal through the little window of the basement and my mom and dad putting it in the stove to keep the house warm all winter. The horse field across the street is gone, and now stands a pretty house. I can feel the wind against my skin as I learned to ice skate on the field that would freeze every winter.

I have googled my house, so I can see it from above every once and awhile. So many memories...good and bad. But this place will be my first home that I remember. The life there has influenced me so much...I was just so glad to touch it again...to experience being that little girl one more time.

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Happy Mother's Day!!!



My special day with my little arrows! Happy Mother's Day 2011

Saturday, May 7, 2011

TraffickJam 2011

Matt just sent this picture from the beach in Daytona. No, they are not enjoying the beautiful beaches of Florida. They are taking their morning to take a stand against child sex traffick. Matt and Bryn are participating in a 10 mile walk to end child sex trafficking in Cambodia. Yes, this is a real issue. I know we don't like to talk about subjects like that. But it is a reality. Bryn raised over $100 for the walk...and they are out there taking a stand. I am excited to see at a young age, Bryn knows that not everyone has the comfortable life that she enjoys. I love to see her heart. It makes me feel great to see her love for others and the Lord.

Friday, May 6, 2011

More Bee Stuff...

Everything arrived for Matt...his full outfit. We finish the boxes tonight and hopefully get the bees this weekend. We are ready (I think)!

Bryn is never one to be left out. She is helping Matt with the bees. She purchased her own jacket and hat...she will be his assisstant! I will be watching from behind closed doors :)



Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Trusting

Would you trust this suit to protect you from a few thousand bees? He obviously thinks so.


Monday, May 2, 2011

He Peeks Out From the Flowers



Despite the good, the bad, the trials and triumphs of this world...He still is in the flowers and all of this world. His presence brings me comfort...His will brings me joy...and His love is overwhelming.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

The Buzz Around the Reynolds Nation




It has been a busy few days around here at the Reynolds Nation. Our friends down at ZipTie Ranch have exploded into the world of bees...and it got my husband Matthew very interested. After lots of blog reading, and questions we decided to jump right in with them. Or let me rephrase that...Matthew decided to jump right in. I am not overly fond of bees, so I will be there more for far away observation and use of the honey.


Matt ordered all his supplies and last night he built the boxes. They are ready to paint and we will hopefully be picking up our hives this week. So, in prep for all this, we have been preparing the area that the bees will be going in...which consisted of lots of painting, sweeping and pulling down of poison ivy (that was my job, since every else is very allergic). Everyone is buzzing about the house, ready to jump into this new adventure.