Tuesday, December 19, 2017

Book Review - The Sound of Rain by Sarah Loudin Thomas

  The Sound of Rain by Sarah Loudin Thomas is set in the 1950s, which I enjoyed, since that isn't a time frame often chosen by historical fiction writers.  I was interested in the Appalachian aspect, and I did appreciate that the author portrayed the mountain people with a sense of respect and dignity, but the mountains are only a small portion of the story.  Most of it is set in South Carolina.  The story moves rather slowly, and introduces many minor stories within the main story.  I actually enjoyed some of the minor stories better.  I did like the main character, Judd, and I thought that his character seemed realistic.  I felt that Larkin was less developed as a character, though, and her family's issues should have felt more interesting than they did.  Overall, I liked this book but didn't feel compelled to finish it in any hurry.  The author is good at painting the scenery and other descriptive writing, but the plot could have used a bit more attention.

I received this book from the publisher, Bethany House, for the purpose of writing a review, but all opinions are my own.

Thursday, December 14, 2017

St. Joseph

Gyunay was thrilled to play St. Joseph in his preschool nativity.  He did a great job.  It was really cute, with 66 preschoolers!  We took Lydia out of school so she could see it, too, and she said, "This is the best play ever!  They are so cute!"  And they were.
Here is our Joseph, walking by the donkey. 

Mary and Joseph hanging out by baby Jesus as Miss Linda reads their story.

Singing with hand motions from an adorable cast

Santa and Mrs. Claus were available afterwards, and Gyunay was the first one up to see them.  He didn't bother with telling them what he wants for Christmas (I don't think he knows that it is expected), but he did enjoy getting a quick picture.

And it all ends with cookies and punch.  We did go out for lunch before returning Lydia to school.  

Friday, December 8, 2017


He gets these really weird expressions on his face for pictures these days, but he is still such a cutie.  

I've been reading (dreaming) over the seed catalogs and keeping the fire going.  Nathaniel's been gone.  The older kids had their first Reconciliation on Wednesday night ("That was easier than I thought!"), and we have a holy day today, so we've been at church quite a bit this week.  Elijah, Lydia, and I are still sniffling a bit from colds that just don't go away, but I am thankful that we have all been relatively healthy since all I've been hearing lately is how many awful bugs are going around.  Last week, Malachi, Elijah, and I each had 1-day-down illnesses, but those did pass quickly.  It's just these annoying colds that linger for some of us now.  I'm hoping we can stay healthy!  (And I'm hedging my bets by feeding everyone homemade stock-based soup and oranges.)

Thursday, December 7, 2017

2017 Garden Harvest Totals

So I finally totaled all of my harvest from the gardens, and this is the grand list.  I actually am still harvesting arugula and parsley from outside, and basil from inside, but this is a pretty good estimate.

Arugula - 12+cups
Beans, calypso dried - 1 2/3 cups
Beans, golden crescent, fresh - 12.5 cups
Blackberries - 8.75 cups
Cabbage -1
Carrots - 68
Corn -12
Cucumbers - 29
Garlic, bulbs - 28
Garlic, scapes - 18
Kale - 5+cups
Lima Beans - 1/4 cup
Onions, bulb - 23
Onions, green - 11
Pak Choy -2+ cups
Pea Pods - 6 1/4 cups
Peppers - 11
Potatoes - 2lbs 8.5 oz
Radish - 43
Raspberries - 1c
Squash, butternut - 4
Sweet Potatoes - 16.8 lbs
Swiss Chard - 3+cups
Tomatillos - 6.5 lbs
Tomatoes, cherry types
Tomatoes, Black Krim - 36
Tomatoes, Black Vernissage - 163
Tomatoes, Golden Jubilee - 116
Tomatoes, St. Pierre - 304
Tomatoes, Woodle Orange  - 97
Turnips - 21
Watermelon -3
Zucchini - 3

Friday, December 1, 2017

November Harvest Totals

Carrots, little finger 8
Eggs 71
Peppers, peppadew 4
Tomatillos 1/2 lb
Tomatoes, St Pierre 8
and several cups of arugula, basil, and parsley

5 of the hens are molting, so the egg production has gone way down.  The tomatoes are ones I put in the garage shortly before frost, so we could let them ripen and enjoy a few more.