Wednesday, November 19, 2014

mummifying a chicken

 You will need:
  • a whole fryer (the smaller, the better)
  • LOTS of table salt
  • a number of 2-gallon Ziploc bags.
1. Take the insides out of the cavity.
2. Wash the chicken. (Then wash your hands very well--chickens can carry bacteria!)
3. Fill cavity with salt.
4. Fill the bottom of the Ziploc bag with salt, then put in the chicken and fill the bag with salt. You may want to double-bag the chicken to help reduce any odor. Try to squeeze out as much air as you can before you zip the bags closed. (Wash your hands again.)
5. Put the bag away for two weeks (or until the salt becomes moist). At this point, remove the chicken and change the salt inside the cavity and surrounding the chicken.  You may wish to use a new bag as well.  The chicken may smell at this point, so work fast. Wash your hands thoroughly when you are finished with the salt change.
6. Keep checking the salt and change whenever very moist. The entire process of changing the salt to dry out the chicken could take up to 6 weeks (or longer) to dry thoroughly. When it is dry, it should not smell.
7. Once the chicken is dry, remove it from the bag and carefully wash off the salt. Pat it dry. Then coat it inside with your favorite cooking oil or even baby oil. Then  sprinkle it with sweet- smelling spices, such as cinnamon, allspice, nutmeg, cloves, whatever.
8. Cut up strips of white linen (or cloth--gauze is perfectly fine and already in strips), dip them in glue (the Egyptians used resin which is a sticky tree sap) and wrap them around mummy. (If you want to get fancy, you can find some photos of Egyptian animal mummies and try to do a more geometric wrapping as the Egyptians often did.)
9. Let your chicken mummy dry.

Sunday, November 16, 2014


The smell of apples and cinnamon on the stove  Ah... delicious.  A family from church gave us a large box of apples, this wasn't the year to get lots of preserving done so I was thrilled to receive these.  Apple sauce.. because it's easy and you don't need to be precise, because my days are filled with interruptions from my little ones this is something that can sit on the stove as long as I need. That's an essential to the kind of cooking happening around these parts lately. 
Three apple pies came from this box as well that we were able to share together in the evening of a chilly night by the fire.

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Happy Birthday Babies

Happy Birthday Babies!

What a year we have had together.  Words fail me , how do I express feelings ofoverwhelming joy to heart break.  God knew what he was doing when he gave me you two.

Baby A,

You my boy have took your mama's heart. Never did I think we would walk the journey we are on together.  I will never forget the day we were transferred and the cardiologist met us in our room. Daddy, me with Seamus in my arms and the midwife sitting on the bed as he began to explain what this diagnosis would look like. On a clip board he drew a diagram of a normal heart and then he drew a diagram of your heart.  I remember the words but not being able to full grasp the gravity of what he was saying. I looked at our midwife and tears were rolling down her cheeks.   At 6 days old I held you begging God to let you stay. I didn't know if that was the last time I'd see you. Not many will ever understand what it is like to watch your baby fight with all they have against a failing heart, to see them after surgery, to sign consent to something you know could very well end their lives.
 The months that followed were the most difficult days I have ever walked but every day to be with you was worth it.
The tears have flowed and the ache inside me is daily. You have taught us what love looks like. Each moment with you is amazing. You have taught me to enjoy and fully embrace motherhood and to remember that you are God's first.

Baby B,
 Seamus. What a beautiful reflection of God's love and kindness you are. Every single day for a year you have woke me up with your infectious smile.  When I see you I am amazed you are mine. Your soul is so gentle, I feel like I can see who you are already.
People always talk about the special connection twins have, but to see it in all its beauty and intricacy is beyond amazing. I hope you always appreciate that bond. Every night when I crawl into bed and you two are cuddled up together melts me. I say it over and over " I can't believe they are mine".

Your journeys, though, will be your own. You'll pave your own paths and take your own risks and earn your own triumphs and endure your own heartbreaks. Wherever that leads, Mommy and Daddy believe in you and we'll never ask you to be anything other than who you are. But most of all we are behind you cheering you both on. 

Sunday, November 9, 2014

the 1st birthday bash

Today we celebrated with 60+ friends and family our two little blessing "thing 1 and thing 2"

Friday, November 7, 2014

this moment

{this moment} ~ A Friday ritual. A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember.

Monday, November 3, 2014

two words


Celebrations for two little boys are underway, there is no stopping the calendar
now.. Birthday celebrations will roll into holiday traditions. And while I just may be the busiest I have ever been I joyfully ride this season.  I savor those late night car ride home with my teens, their hearts tend to spill out in the passenger seat of my van. 

Thank You...home we gathered at this weekend, deep in the woods, to share family stories and dreams and open our bibles together to the beautiful friends.

Thank You.... Thank the wonderfully organized homeschooling mamas around us who so graciously and gracefully pull such good things together.

Thank-You... to my helpers who go the extra mile to make the days run a little smoother.

Thank You..... friends who continually wrap your arms around me and whisper "it will be ok".

Thank you... Chris for supporting my dreams and encouraging me to break out of the walls and dream bigger.

Thank You.... Hannah for always making me laugh.

Thank You... Natalie for your beautiful girlhood and your sweet gentle nature.

Thank-You....Henry for showing me how desperately we need Jesus.

Thank- you....Seamus for the soothing balm you are to my soul. I drink in your sweetness with joy daily.

Thank my teens who said, 'thank you' to me at the end of each day last week as I played their taxi driver/chauffeur between classes, lessons, and rehearsals.


Monday, October 27, 2014

birthday project

 Soup on the stove - lots more soup. Hats and sweaters with only a rare sighting of bare feet outside these days  unless my spunky little ones are making a dash for a forgotten toy outside .  Fire in the wood stove nearly every night now.  And with these full days - darkening as they are - we find ourselves all tucked into our  beds a little bit earlier.   Last Thursday was my Birthday and probably one of my most memorable. A group of ladies from church and I went out for dinner. I requested no gifts but I challenged them to a random act of kindness. Instead of a gift for me I wanted them to give a gift to our server that night. This was so fun! She got everything from coffee gift cards, socks, mitts, steeped tea, chocolate hedgehogs...   even though my children were not there they were all in on the excitement of it.  This has had our heads spinning in random acts of kindness mode.. We find ourselves asking "what can we do next?" After a pretty rough 2014 we plan to end it with some great ideas.
Generosity is “realizing that all I have belongs to God and using it for His purposes.”