COLORADO

As promised last week, here are some pictures.  If you hadn’t figured it out from the clues last Friday, or the title today…We went to Colorado.

It was our first time without the kids in 5 years.  We dropped off the kiddos two by two with their aunts and headed out.  Just the two of us.  It was weird, especially at first.  It felt awkward to be in a quiet minivan.  But we got used to it. 🙂 

A friend of ours was getting married in Denver.  I have an uncle and aunt that live between Colorado Springs and Denver they offered to put us up while we did some sightseeing and then went to the wedding.  Here are a few of the highlights.

1) strangest object found on side of road:  gavel  [no, not gravel]
2) coolest word found on sign:  “mudjacking”  [definition: a technique of pressure injecting grout for the purpose of raising or stabilizing concrete slabs]
3) Random items to break up Nebraska:  Fake giraffe head poking out of a barn.  Life size replica of T-Rex charging the interstate.
4) We played the License Plate Game.  And found representation from 46 states!!! And 5 provinces!  [I thought that was a lot.]

anyway…here’s what you’ve really been waiting for:

We found a pony express station.  Cool factor:  Buddy and I are studying the Pony Express this year in 1st grade.  So… we stopped, took photos, talked to the local historian, bought a neat Pony Express coloring book, and had fun just looking around learning.

                                                               

The best part of Nebraska was when the sun set.  SO pretty.

This outcropping of rocks on Pike’s Peak was pretty big.  He’s the king of the world. 

 

We actually did a TON more, but I’ll just have to save that for another post.  Happy Friday!

Where am I?

It’s Friday.  I’m not home.  Here is a fun little scavenger hunt to find out where I might be.
1.  I am “out West”
2.  The elevation is 5,280 ft.
3.  Sunsets are “Orange and Blue”
4.  I am approx. 1,000 miles from home.
5.  The mountains here are a little bigger than my Ocooch Mountains.

Have fun guessing!  Next week there WILL be photos.  :0)

An explanation, an apology, but no excuses

Good day all! I have been out of the blog world for quite a spell. Many of you still kept visiting OneAcreFarm even though there have been no posts for a while. This spring, Ben’s teaching contract came to an end. That meant it was decision time for us. What are we going to do now? Because Ben was finishing his degree (he’s done Finally!!!!), he put his resume out to a couple of different places. It looked like we were going to be moving…..AGAIN. To say that I got a little bummed would be an understatement.  I was downright grouchy about the whole thing.  I just wanted to be normal for a change!!!  I was mad at Ben. I was mad at my kids.  I was mad at his perspective places of employment.  I was even mad at God.  It was not a good time in our home.

I decided to not post OneAcreFarm.  Mostly because I was being just plain cantankerous.  …and I didn’t know whether we would be on one acre, or two acres, or in a tiny apartment with no land….  Pretty much bad attitude reigned.  So, I stopped posting.  It was my revenge on everything that was “ruining” my idea of what life should be.

Throughout the months of waiting, I learned a lot.  Like how when we ask God to teach us patience, He does…..through experience.  (insert Argh!)  I also had to learn a really BIG lesson about letting God take control.  [I’m kind of a control freak.  Not in your typical sorts of ways.  I don’t have to be in charge.  I just have to be “in the know,”  and I was far from “in the know.”  In fact, I was out of the loop.  All decisions were in the hands of others.]   Now, I hope that I’ve actually learned these lessons.  I hope that I don’t have to re-learn them anytime soon.  It was really, REALLY hard.

To my patient husband: “I’m sorry for being ornery during that time.  I know it made life especially hard on you with finishing up your school and all.  I will try to be more considerate of you in the future, and less wrapped up in my wants.”

 To my kids:  “You better not be on the computer!”  (I apologized in person. Besides, they can’t read.)  :0)

To my readers:  “Thank you for continuing to check if I had posted anything new.  I am sorry for leaving you out of the loop.  I will try to keep you posted if I am going to take a break anytime in the future.”

I suppose some of you may be wondering what happened in the job situation with Ben.  Well, we aren’t moving across the country!  We did not get the church he had begun candidating at.  Instead, he was offered a position as the administrator of the school that he taught at part-time last year.  He started in July!  He has been SUPER-DUPER BUSY trying to get things ready for the next school year to begin.  He is so excited about his job for the first time in a loooong time.  In fact, I can’t recall if I’ve ever seen this kind of excitement about a job.  He still wants to pastor, but for now he is using his management major.  ;0)   I think he’s a perfect fit for the job too!  (although I might be a teeny tiny bit biased.)

Meanwhile, back at the RANCH…

As many of you know, the internet can be an endless black hole.  The other day, I got on facebook to scan the feed and see if any of my friends had anything exciting happen, then I saw a blog I like was linked up to a free giveaway.  I clicked like.  It redirected me to another blog to like.  Then another.  and another. and another….  Before I knew it, I’d clicked onto a blog that had NOTHING to do with the original giveaway, but she was giving out a coupon code for a skirt, and I LOVED her shoes, so I found myself scrolling through her blog and came across a recipe for ranch dressing.  I printed it.  I checked the time.  OH, MY!  how did that happen?   Nap time was screeching to a halt and all I’d accomplished was signing up for free diapers, more free diapers, coupon codes, and printing this recipe.  OOF! 

Well……It totally paid off!!  I made the ranch.  It was loved by all.  In fact, Ben has begun to request salad, just so he can use the ranch dressing. (!!!)  He announced that I’m not to ever buy ranch again.  Because this stuff is soooooo stinkin’ amazing.  I thought it might  be a passing phase, but it has been almost 2 weeks now and he was ready to make a special trip into town just for the buttermilk that I would need to make another batch.  Oh yeah, and some lettuce too. Link to Ranch recipe

When I made it, I decided to store it in an old ketchup bottle, so the photo would look just plain tacky.  (white Heinz with cracked pepper…eh.)  But Michelle’s picture looks way AMAZING!!!!  And if you want the recipe for this awesome stuff, just click the picture. 

Seriously, I thought of doing a sequential scavenger hunt for you to find the recipe (you know, with clues that lead to the next clue and you finally end up at the destination) just because that’s how I got to it, but I thought that might be a bit tedious for some.  So all you have to do is click the photo.

And again a HUGE Thank You to Michelle!!!

Sneak preview

I don’t typically give sneak previews, but this time I am.  PhotoOp Friday will be an entire post.   Not just a photo.  AND it’s food.  Here are the first reactions to eating it that I got from my family and some friends:

“Will you marry me?” -Ben  (“sorry dear, I’m already married.”)

“MO!” -Belle (Buddy and Puddy couldn’t finish theirs, so Belle snuck into the dining room climbed the table and made off with both of their leftovers.)

“McDonald’s and Hardee’s, Eat your heart out!”  -Armin

“Mmmmmm. Darn. Mmmhmm. Mmmhmm. oh wow!  yeah, that was good.” -Rebecca

So, there you have it.  The trailer.  Sneak preview. Whatever you want to call it.  It’s sweet.  It’s savory.  It’s waiting for…..FRIDAY!!!!

9.8m/s^2

here’s a quick thought.

Genesis 3 describes the Fall of mankind.  Before the fall, humans were made to not die (or deteriorate).  The force of gravity aides in our ‘downhill spiral’ [pun intended].  It causes our bodies to start sagging.  I wonder if maybe the force of gravity was not as strong before the fall and then, because of the curse, gravity was kicked up a notch and…..we fell, literally.           bahahaha

Ok, I know, bad joke.  But….sometimes these things just come to me and I feel it isn’t right to keep it to myself.

Handy Fact #671

  • In case you’re wondering: 9.8m/s^2 is the average force of gravity on the surface of earth.

What do you want to be when you grow up?

See this.  This is a memorial on the bank of the Danube River in Budapest, Hungary.  It honors the Jews that were ordered to take their shoes off before being shot into the river during WWII.  Legend has it that a few jumped just moments before being hit and were able to swim to safety on the other side.

It is also a very personal memorial for me.  A jumping point in my life.  Do you see the protrusion of concrete at the end of the memorial?  Early in July of 2005 I sat there with my feet dangling over the edge.  My mind was in a swirl trying to figure out what I would actually do once I got back home. 

It was the summer before my senior year in college.  So many questions plagued me.  Would I go back to Missouri and finish my undergrad and move onto med school?  Would I go to Illinois State and get my teaching degree.  What would I do?  As I sat there wrestling with what I thought might be best for me and my future, my good friend asked me a question.  It was meant to cut the tension, but it did so much more.  “Well, what do you want to be when you grow up?  Do you want to be a doctor?  Do you want to teach science?  What exactly do you WANT to be?” 

Seriously? What do I want to be when I grow up?  I’m 21.  I am grown up.  And then, I started to try to answer the question. 

Well, I kind of have to be a doctor.  Why?  Because that’s what I told everyone I wanted to be.   Ok, so is it true….still?  No, not really.  Alright, then med school should probably be out.  What about teaching?   Well, I guess that’s my only other choice.  Why?  What else can I do with 3 years of science?  And…..I do like kids.  So then, you WANT to teach?   Yeah, I guess.  What is it that you would do if you didn’t have to make money and be paid?  Promise not to tell anyone?   Yeah.  I’d be a wife.  and a mom.  Then why don’t you?  What???  I can’t just run around with a sign that says “I’m single, you free?”.  That would be weird, to say the least.  So find a husband.

Wow, that was profound.  I hated my friend that day.  Life was so straight forward for that friend. 

I had always had this belief that I had to be something.  My dream of being a stay at home mom had to take a backseat.  Sometime in my early childhood I began to think that “wife and mom” wasn’t a worthy title.  I had to make something of myself before I could do what I really wanted.

When asked, “What do you want to be when you grow up?,” I jumped from Olympic figure skater (which didn’t work out for obvious reasons) to veterinarian to missionary doctor to midwife to teacher to U.S. Army.  Even through all the different jobs I wanted to hold, I would always come back to “after I do that I am going to have a family.”

That day in Hungary made me wonder if it were possible to just have a family and NOT have to have a career too.  The thought was embarrassing.  BUT, if only it could possible be true…  I took the leap.  I went ahead and went to school for teaching, but only as a backup.  Just in case I didn’t find a husband. 

Just a few weeks later, I completely surrendered my life to Christ.  Little did I know that He would be able to take that surrender and use it to lead me to a man who loved God and me (and was cute too!)  And also lead me to my dream job.  Ben and I were married within a year of that day.  I also got to teach at a Christian school until our first child was born.

Even though I was already grown and had already put several years towards a particular career, that question changed my mindset and my life.  It is never too late to ask yourself: “what do you want to be when you grow up?”  You may just surprise yourself with the answer.

 

a public apology.

If you read my post about the “camera-to-computer” cord being lost, you know that I  blamed suspected my husband of hiding the cord to teach me to put things away.  WELL, it turns out he did NOT hide it.  Because I made public accusation, I feel that I must make public apology.  I am sorry, Ben, that I thought you would hide the cord.

That’s better.

Now, you must have figured out that I found the cord…….so…..here are some pictures!!!  Yeah, what we’ve all been waiting for.

Buddy & Puddi

Puddi & Belle

Tyker For those of you who might be wondering, I found it in the spice rack.  No, I don’t know what I was thinking, yes, I did learn my lesson.

Good Morning!

Hello World!  It’s a bright and cheery day at the Marx household, even though it is gray and dreary outdoors.  MANY, many things have happened since I wrote last.  It’s been super busy around here!  First, Tyker has started pulling himself up to standing and I need to lower the mattress in the crib because he’s about to go over the edge.  Also, Buddy was in a Christmas program at the school where Ben works (they needed one more kid for the Christmas alphabet).  And, I got a ‘new’ oven!!!  YES!  I just want to formally thank my wonderful husband for trekking 2 hours [each way] in the middle of nowhere to find the place of the guy who was selling a gas stove on craigslist for cheap (and Buddy for keeping him company on the trip).  Also, for the headache of getting old stove out and new stove in and converted from LP to natural gas.  [I’ve got an awesomely handy hubby!]

I think my husband is trying to teach me the very important lesson of putting things back where I got them from.  I know that I left the photo transfer cord on top of the file cabinet the last time I uploaded pictures onto the computer, not in the tiny drawer clearly labeled: “CORDS”  (which is where it actually belongs).  But, I remembered where I left it, and was going to come back to it later.  [procrastination: friend or enemy?  for me, it’s an enemy that I treat as a friend in hopes it will be friendly back, but it never is.  I should learn.]  ANYWAY, back to my story.  So, the cord is not on the dishwasher, (did I say dishwasher?  I meant file cabinet.  It isn’t on the dishwasher either…I checked) or the entertainment center.  Neither is it in the ‘cords’ drawer.  I think Ben may have hidden it in hopes of my learning, he is a teacher you know.

BEN: “I have humbly learned my lesson (for now, i think).”

So, Christmas baking and candy making are well underway.  I have taken TONS of photos (and will be posting as soon as I locate that crazy cord).  There are mocha truffles, eggnog truffles, sugar cookies, rolled sugar cookies, gingerbread cookies, gingerbread (nativity) house [with animals!!!], edible christmas tree ornaments, homemade eggnog.  Ohhhh, the list goes on and on and on.  The house smells like what I imagine the houses of fairy-tale grandmothers smell like: wonderful.  There is ginger and nutmeg and cinnamon and apple and cloves all mixing in the air with the aroma of fresh-baked goodies.  I wonder if I can upload smells on here.  Perhaps one of these other cords will work?  Probably not.

Anyway, there are LOTS of photos coming in the near(?) future.  I will post them with recipes if I have enough feedback asking for it.  Otherwise, just pics.  Have a wonderful Christmas season spending time with your families, and remember to keep Christ as the center.  [I also have a pretty cool post coming soon about some neat traditions for doing just that, but for now I need to go spend some time with my 4 little kiddos.]