Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Our First Duck Eggs Have Hatched!!

We were surprised this afternoon by 2 of our duck eggs hatching, and the cute tiny babies that they are!! We have raised ducklings before, but this is the first time we have ever had our adult ducks sit on their eggs until they hatched. We have 4 female ducks and 1 male. We are certain though that the mommy sitting with these two little ones isn't their actual mother. Two of the female ducks, Mocha and Brownie, alternate sitting on the nest of eggs. However, though Mocha is sitting on them and with them right now, I would almost guarantee that their real mommy is Brownie as they look just like her.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Handmade Earrings

Ashley works with a lady at the dog grooming business who makes watches out of safety pins and tiny little beads. She can customize them to your favorite color. They are really nice! Well this gave Ashley the idea to try some jewelry on her own. These are the earrings she came up with. Some people are so creative!!!!! :+)

Fairs & Derbys are a Favorite For Us

Every year for 23 years now (minus 1 yr. when one of our babies was sick) I have gone to Westfair. It was a treat for us when I was a teen in high school, and still enjoy it now! It is one favorite thing our family does every year together. We spend anywhere from 2 - 4 days at the fair every July. Westfair is the Pottawattamie County Fair in IA. One of their biggest sponsors happens to be the company that my husband works for. Every year they give us gate tickets and arena tickets to go watch the Figure 8s and the Derby's. We are blessed to be able to do this each year. It wouldn't be summer without it! Though we live on a small farm, our kids loves looking at the 4-H exhibits, the animals there, and all the food vendors who sell everything from slushies, to hotdogs, to Fat Alberts, to funnel cakes.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

A Water Pond?

Some friends of ours put together a beautiful water garden/pond area in their yard this summer, which gave Ashley the idea of doing something similar in our yard. So, when Ashley came back from working at the grooming shop with Jean, she brought home some plants and buckets for the task. Ashley, our younger kids, and my niece and nephew, all pitched in to help. We had gotten the wooden geese at a garage sale for $1 each, and then the kids all pitched in and gathered rocks to add to it. Ashley plans to buy some Goldfish to put to the water, and some flowers to plant around the rocks as well.

A "Blessed" Opportunity

I wanted to share about an opportunity I had Sunday night… As I mentioned in my last post, our kids were watching the RAGRAI riders go past our gravel road all afternoon on Sunday (close to 12,000 of them) when one man dumped his bike. The kids all ran over to help him pick up his things, and he just happened to be a Reverend. He gave them his business card and said that if they write to them, he will gladly send them some T-shirts and Bibles for their help. Well that got Mariah (my 11-year-old niece) and Noah (our 9-year-old son) to asking me a lot of questions about God, Jesus, Heaven, what God thinks about being gay or lesbian, etc. Well Noah has always been raised knowing who the Lord is, but to personally give his own heart to the Lord by choice was something I don't believe that he had not done yet. My niece had been taken to church as a tiny baby, but their lives have been anything but for the Lord since then. Well Sunday night, Noah and Mariah both gave their hearts to the Lord! Mariah asked me if I had a kids Bible that she could have, and so I got out a Bible for her, and they both sat and read together (Mariah reading to Noah), about the first 45 pages of it so far. They were so excited and wanted to be left alone to read instead of play with the other kids! That was awesome for me! She asked me if I thought her mom was a Christian. I hadn’t answered yet, but Noah piped up and says, “No, definitely not.” Well she didn’t say anything in reply, and I just said, “I don’t know honey.” Do I personally think so? No. But I cannot see the heart, and can only see from outward appearances, so I left it at that and said that God knows Himself, and it is He who counts. Exciting though, huh?! Maybe my niece will lead her family to the Lord one day?!

Sunday, July 20, 2008

RAGBRAI Starts Today!

Ragbrai is the Des Moines Register's Annual Great Bicycle Ride Across Iowa. It is our annual seven-day bicycle ride across the state. RAGBRAI is known for being the longest, largest and oldest touring bicycle ride in the world. This year they will start in Missouri Valley, IA (close to where we live on the western border), then go through Minden & Shelby (where we do live), and end in Le Claire, IA along the eastern border by the Mississippi River. Our kids, and my niece, got to sit and watch as the thousands of riders went past our gravel road. There were literally between 8,000 - 12,000 riders of all ages. What an awesome time our kids had as they got to watch them ride by, and the riders were gracious enough to hand out candy, necklaces, keyrings, and even a $20.00 bill for them to split! They even got to help a pastor, whose bike dumped over, pick up all his belongings and then talked to him about the Lord. He promised that if they'd write to him at the address on his business card, he'd send them some t-shirts and Kids Bibles as well. It was especially exciting as the riders who waved, hit their hands as they rode by, and made the kids feel special. They sat there for a couple of hours watching and encouraging the riders as they passed by. It was a real treat for them!

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Keith Anderson & Fireworks, All in One Night!

Last night our oldest daughter, Niki, and her boyfriend invited us to go with them to a Royals Baseball Game, fireworks, and a concert - all sponsored by the place Dustin works, Werner Enterprises Trucking. Well sadly, the Royals lost by 2 points, but the fireworks were absolutely BEAUTIFUL!!!! I have waited my whole life to actually see fireworks from inside a stadium! Even as a little girl I wanted to go to see them, especially after my sister and my dad went one year. I was so jealous that day! But last night, I got to see them up close! It was awesome!! Then to make the night even better, there was a concert afterward with Keith Anderson! Well my daughter was thrilled beyond thrilled to get to go, but I am just starting to like country music, and so I wasn't even sure who he was at first. Well I wasn't disappointed!! He is a great singer, and we got to stand up beside the stage and lean against the speakers. Well things just got better. When the concert was over, my husband asked if we wanted to go meet him personally?! Well Niki jumped at the idea, I was just sure that they'd arrest us or ask us to leave once we walked behind the stage toward their tour bus, and Dustin walked back there, saw his boss standing close by, and decided to not to try. Well one of the other band members just happened to be walking into the tour bus, so Doug introduced himself and gave him his Budweiser business card. The next thing we know, they were inviting us to come in and sit to visit with them! Doug is really hoping to hire them to play for the Budweiser 50th Anniversary Bash, so it gave us perfect opportunity to meet him! Here we were, it was 85* outside, terribly humid so we were all hot and sweaty...and we get to go in and visit with someone famous! I'm sure I was quite a sight with my hair stuck to the back of my neck and forehead, no makeup, etc., but it was worth it! Plus, it was nice and cool in there, so by the time we left, we were much cooler than when we'd first walked in. They are a really nice group of guys!! Their band has so much enthusiasm! And Keith Anderson is a really nice guy himself!! He has a down home way about him...a kindness...a sincerity. As we were leaving, he gave Niki a hug and a kiss on the cheek too. Now that made her day! Not only that, but come on, you have to admit...he's nice on the eyes too!!!! :+)

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Doggie Stairs!

One of our older daughters (Ashley), and one of our younger boys (Colten), decided to build a set of doggie stairs for her chihuahuas who aren't big enough to get up on the sofa, or her bed, by themselves. They saw a picture in a catalog of what they wanted to make, and went out first thing this morning, measured boards, cut wood, and proceeded to build doggie stairs. Didn't they do a wonderful job?!?!

Monday, July 14, 2008

My Perennials are Blooming!!

One of my best friends, Debbie, has been giving me, from her own garden, starts of her perennials. Though we have had numerous storms, terrible winds, tornadoes and flooding, my perennials are finally blooming!!!!

We Just Love Having Grandbabies!

This is Landon (who is 2 1/2) & Alona (who is 4 1/2 mo. old). What happy, smiley little kids they are!

This is Kaden (who is 5 months now) who loves swimming at Grandma and Grandpa's house! He's a happy little boy too with a big smile and lots of kisses!

Saturday, July 12, 2008

A Part of Being On a Farm

Part of the fun of being on a farm is finding "babies" once in a while. We found this baby bunny and have been bottle feeding her (okay, syringe feeding her) for almost a week now. Her poor mama seems to have disappeared. We're enjoying her though!

Thursday, July 10, 2008

A Friend & Fellow Dog Breeder

A friend of mine is the one who blessed me with being able to start my dog breeding business. She and her husband have been wonderful to us, and we have learned so much from them. Jean Flowers has been breeding dogs for 30+ years now. She is a wealth of information, loves her dogs, and takes wonderful care of them! She has an entire house solely devoted to her dogs. It is because of her that I was able to start my hobby business when she asked if I would be interested in working on a new breed of dog with her. I was thrilled and jumped at the chance!! Not only does she sell Petite Le Fleurs, but also Pomapoos, Chihuahuas, Toy Poodles, and Rat Terriers (which are Brian's speciality). She has some wonderful dogs and puppies for sale.

If you are interested, or know anyone who is, please check out her website!
Her business is called, "Designer Pets" and her pictures of her puppies for sale can be found out:
*Heaven's Tiny Petals does NOT sell to Puppy Mills or Pet Shops! (My business)

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Let's Get Organized For The New School Year!

"Would you love to spend an afternoon--or a week--with another homeschool mom and plan out the details of your school year? Wouldn't it be great to have someone take you step-by-step through planning out your goals, choosing techniques for teaching those new studies, deciding upon your curriculum selections, setting up your daily schedule, and fitting in REAL LIFE? Well, beloved, this could be the most valuable resource you'll ever find, read on..." (Cindy Rushton)

If this sounds like something that you'd be interested in attending this coming Friday and Saturday, then this is where you need to be...

I can personally guarantee that it will be well worth it!!!

A Late Summer Garden

We are blessed to have a late summer garden this year after all!! As I am sure that you all know, IA has had so much flooding, rain, thunderstorms and tornadoes this spring and summer that many crops and gardens have had little or no chance to grow. Well Ashley, our 18-year-old daughter, and two of our younger kids, decided to plant a garden and see if they could get anything to grow, even if it was late in the summer. Well they were successful! It's growing beautifully! They actually tilled up the area of ground themselves, planted, watered, and have been weeding it all themselves! I am so proud of them!! They planted corn, carrots, yellow squash, cucumbers and pumpkin. Next year, weather permitting, we plan to double or triple the size of the garden. What a great blessing this is! God is ever faithful to provide.

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

A New Motto...

Our home is clean enough to be healthy,
Organized enough to be peaceful,
And blessed to know its ALL

New Puppies!!

We have three new arrivals here this week. One of my Petite Le Fleur dogs has 3 new babies (2 males and 1 female), and I have two more pregnant mommies due in August! What a blessing for my new breeding business!
*Heaven's Tiny Petals does NOT sell to Puppy Mills or Pet Shops!