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Kyleann33
Interests: I love being a stay at home mom. Alex & I go for walks, visit the library, explore creeks & parks, bake and paint together. I also love sewing- I sew children's clothes to sell in a baby boutique and cloth produce and market bags to sell in a local food store.
Recent Activity
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The boys have been working on their clubhouses this week. Alex has been building a clubhouse next to Eli's. I was impressed to see they even measured the studs so they were evenly spaced. They've spent hours and hours working on it together. Levi enjoys being outside with the boys, and digging in Eli's digging pit. He likes to dig a cool hole to lie down in, and he snoozes there while the kids play. I love seeing the boys working and playing together, and outside enjoying the warm sunshine! Continue reading
Posted yesterday at Adventures On a Rural Homestead
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We harvested the first asparagus and rhubarb from our garden last week. My favorite way to eat rhubarb is with strawberries, but our strawberries don't have blossoms yet. We've also been working on adding more raised garden boxes to the area that we've tilled the past two summers. (I can't believe this will be our third summer here!) We ordered 30 10' cedar logs from the local guy who is clearing 200 acres of cedar trees. Nick got the first two boxes together and filled, and I planted potatoes and Sweet Valentine lettuce. I'm so excited to have these raised... Continue reading
Posted yesterday at Adventures On a Rural Homestead
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We kept the perimeter of our back pasture mowed last summer, it makes a nice walking trail. I measured it with my GPS running watch, and it's .45, almost a half-mile around. This week we decided to mow the path again, then Nick decided we should mow the whole pasture. This past fall the farmer that usually hays it ran out of time to get here, so it didn't get cut in the fall like it should have. While the ground was dry enough we were able to mow all 5 acres with our riding mower. It took us about... Continue reading
Posted 4 days ago at Adventures On a Rural Homestead
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I love that our roo still lets Alex pick him up and hold him! We've been spending a lot of time with our chickens~ watching chick t.v. inside, and hanging with Constant and his hens outside. Some of Constant's favorite ladies need to wear chicken saddles~ to protect their backs where his feet have torn out their feathers. It greatly amuses us that the hens have a favorite nesting box, and will sit and wait for it while another hen is laying her egg. Still waiting. . . I love that in addition to providing us with delicious eggs, our... Continue reading
Posted 5 days ago at Adventures On a Rural Homestead
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We are so thankful for the bounty of eggs our hens are laying lately, we've had 28 eggs each of the last two days! We sold 11 dozen eggs today (1 more after I took the photo below) and butternut squash, and loaned books from our home library. It feels so good to provide good food for our family and friends, and to share resources like books. I spent last evening potting up 15 trees, that we plan to plant over on Honeysuckle Acres after settlement in a few weeks. I got 10 Virginia Pine and 5 Sugar Maples a... Continue reading
Posted 7 days ago at Adventures On a Rural Homestead
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The boys have been doing a good job this week of keeping their spirits up and finding things to do. Alex has been doing lots of reading and drawing about dinosaurs, and sending mail to loved ones. He's also enjoying learning new skills like cooking hotdogs on the grill and learning how to use the riding lawn mower. Eli has been working in his digging pit. He hauled up two big fence posts from the back pasture, carrying them over his shoulder. He carefully used the fence post digger, dug a hole and set up a post. Then he ran... Continue reading
Posted 7 days ago at Adventures On a Rural Homestead
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Our baby chicks that we'd ordered in February arrived Tuesday afternoon. And in our 8 years of chicken-keeping we had a horrible first~ when we opened the box 8 our of 13 chicks were dead! Seeing those cold dead bodies piled up was awful. Alex was very upset, he ran out crying to get chicken love from our rooster, who has been renamed Constant. (After my maternal 4th great grandfather.) After hugs and tears I began to search for where we could get some chicks locally. Most feed store chicks are mixed sex and not vaccinated, which is why we... Continue reading
Posted 7 days ago at Adventures On a Rural Homestead
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Last Saturday the 3.1 acre lot next to us was listed for sale. We rushed to call our realtor to find out the details, see the property and make an offer. The timing of buying real estate during a pandemic is awful. The same day that our offer was accepted Nick found out he lost half of his part-time job. But we would also be really unhappy if someone else bought the land and built a house there, so close to our land. There have been so many complications with this deal during an already stressful time, that if it... Continue reading
Posted Mar 22, 2020 at Adventures On a Rural Homestead
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We've been doing a lot to try to keep joy in our lives as we've been home for two weeks, and facing many more weeks alone here. We've watched funny movies with the kids, played games, planned good meals, made our own smoothie and coffee shop, and yesterday we went out for a drive. Nick told the kids that we could take Levi and go for a drive in the country, for a sense of getting out. We explored country gravel roads nearby, and ended up at Natural Chimneys. Since no one else was there we got out for a... Continue reading
Posted Mar 22, 2020 at Adventures On a Rural Homestead
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We've been self-isolating at home for two weeks now. In this time of uncertainty and fear, we have much to be thankful for. We have good food, our chickens are laying 23-29 eggs daily now. I had most of my garden seeds already, and got seeds for the things I usually buy as plants at the nursery: bell and jalapeno peppers, dill, chamomile and basil. My little greenhouse containers of tomatoes and peppers are doing well: Since we already homeschool our daily lives haven't changed as much as some. But we are missing our homeschool group field trips, hiking with... Continue reading
Posted Mar 22, 2020 at Adventures On a Rural Homestead
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The guys worked on our dining room/family room wall project more this past week. They got the water pipes, light switch and electric outlets moved to the side and insulation back in the sides and top. Then Saturday the new support beams went up, and our "prison wall" of support studs came down. What a difference it makes! Now the finish work is left: covering the beams and painting, and installing the beveled floor connector piece. Continue reading
Posted Mar 16, 2020 at Adventures On a Rural Homestead
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My MIL came the beginning of last week to drop off Eli's birthday presents and have lunch with us. We had fun playing games and visiting. I'm glad she came last week, as now we will be social distancing and not visiting with people for a while. Nick was able to run home from work over his lunch break to give his mom a hug and chat with us over lunch, which was nice for all of us. Continue reading
Posted Mar 16, 2020 at Adventures On a Rural Homestead
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Poor Eli still has a cold and cough, but we had a good time celebrating his 7th birthday yesterday. After breakfast he opened presents, then we spent the afternoon making popcorn and playing his favorite games. He felt well enough after dinner to play soccer and lacrosse in the backyard. Alex was excited to give Eli the pajama pants that he had sewed for him, and Eli loves them. He was of course very excited to open a Lego set, and had fun putting together the cars after breakfast. We had his requested birthday dinner: spaghetti and broccoli, with ice... Continue reading
Posted Mar 11, 2020 at Adventures On a Rural Homestead
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Our neighbor friends asked us to babysit their two week old baby goats for a couple days while they went to Baltimore. We've had to much fun watching them bounce and explore around our yard. It especially amuses Eli that they seem to like his digging pit. Alex liked feeding the good eater, while I coaxed the smaller little sister to eat. Levi was curious about the goats, but Mr. Petey was not impressed, and will be glad they are going home tonight. Bottle-fed goats are fun, but just for a couple of days. We won't be rushing out to... Continue reading
Posted Mar 6, 2020 at Adventures On a Rural Homestead
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It's been a busy week here. Most of the busyness has been good, but I've struggled to not feel stressed and anxious. We're having a birthday party here tomorrow, and the middle of our house is still a construction zone, making our dining room about 3' smaller: One of the best ways I've handled anxiety is to go for walks. This week the boys joined me for loops around our pasture, and that was fun. Levi came too, and amused us all with his field vole hunting. The boys have had a good week of lessons. Alex is especially enjoying... Continue reading
Posted Mar 6, 2020 at Adventures On a Rural Homestead
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Eli and I met my dad at the opening game of the season for the college men's lacrosse team last night. I had fun remembering that a lacrosse game last year was Eli's first sport event. He was so surprised by the cheering, and asked me wondrously "Why are people shouting at the players? And how do they know their names?" There was a rather shout-y fan behind us yesterday that swore several times and said the referee was bad. As Eli was going to sleep last night he said "Did you hear the man at the game who was... Continue reading
Posted Feb 27, 2020 at Adventures On a Rural Homestead
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Our homeschool field trip group went to Rt. 11 Chip Company earlier this week. We got to see the whole process~ from potato to fryer, the quality control lines, seasoning, bag printing and bagging. The boys were fascinated to learn how fast they pack, from potato to in the bag in just 11 minutes. We also learned that 100 pounds of potatoes makes 25 pounds of potato chips, we didn't realize they were so much water! It was also neat to hold the chunks of salt rock that they use, real salt from Utah. We got to try samples of... Continue reading
Posted Feb 27, 2020 at Adventures On a Rural Homestead
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It was a beautiful warm and sunny afternoon yesterday, and the boys asked to go for a hike. We invited my parents to join us, and met them at Hone Quarry in the George Washington National Forest. Nick stayed home to rest his back and feet, which were sore from painting the family room beams. My sweet mom carried our backpack for us, since my shoulder can't do that weight yet. The boys had fun exploring some frozen springs off the trail. As he scrabbled up the hill Eli announced "Now this is my kind of terrain!" They enjoyed climbing... Continue reading
Posted Feb 24, 2020 at Adventures On a Rural Homestead
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Now that the wall is down to the studs between our dining and family rooms the ugly faux beams in the family room stood out even more. Sweet Nick spent hours on a ladder painting and caulking around them this weekend. The whole room looks lighter! It is amazing how all these seemingly little changes make such a difference in the feel of our house. I am so thankful for Nick's hard work, I couldn't help since my shoulder is still so sore. I'm eager to see the next stages of our wall demolition later this week, and will share... Continue reading
Posted Feb 24, 2020 at Adventures On a Rural Homestead
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I dug some more carrots this evening, and was pleased to see the spinach and beets are still doing well under the low tunnels too. I was shocked to see that the rhubarb, that we usually eat late May with strawberries, is already up several inches! I collected some forsythia and lilac branches with buds to bring inside, and spotted our first blooming daffodil. Being in my garden in winter seems extra special, not only for providing us with fresh food, but it also gets me outside to dig in the dirt even when it's grey and cold. I am... Continue reading
Posted Feb 21, 2020 at Adventures On a Rural Homestead
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Alex went out early this morning to collect trash. He gathered about three 5 gallon buckets worth of trash from the fence lines and the unused field next to us. This evening Nick helped him pick up more trash, and I helped him get a giant piece of styrofoam from down near our pond. Alex was excited to show me the Mallard duck couple that has been at our pond. They were swimming on the water when we first saw them, and Levi was very curious. As we got closer they walked up the far bank like in the photo... Continue reading
Posted Feb 21, 2020 at Adventures On a Rural Homestead
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We hiked at Braley Pond yesterday afternoon with my parents. It was the perfect day for a hike, and the boys enjoyed showing them one of our favorite spots. When we were there Sunday we had seen what looked like little saplings chewed down by beavers. The boys were delighted to find the beaver dam this time! After walking around the pond we hiked some of a trail through the woods. It is always so good to be in the woods, and to see the boys spending time with their grandparents in the places they love best. Continue reading
Posted Feb 20, 2020 at Adventures On a Rural Homestead
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Adam worked yesterday and today to get the rest of our dining and family room wall down to the studs. There was a nasty surprise in the wall, someone long ago used broken brick rubble as insulation above the doorway. It was quite the mess to remove, but inventive Adam hung buckets under the doorway to catch the rubble as it fell, and held his Shop Vac there to catch the dust and smaller debris. Now the wall is down to the support studs, and the space feels so much more open and light! Next is rerouting the radiator and... Continue reading
Posted Feb 20, 2020 at Adventures On a Rural Homestead
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We explored around Braley Pond yesterday afternoon. Nick had never been there before, and the boys were excited to show him all their favorite spots. Eli told Alex: "I'll give you all of my Legos and everything I own, if you can swim across the pond to the other shore...without drowning." We all cracked up at our little jokester. It was such a lovely end to our weekend, and I was thrilled that I felt well enough to be out. I'm looking forward to my neck and shoulder healing more this week, and to more time in the woods. Continue reading
Posted Feb 17, 2020 at Adventures On a Rural Homestead
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I injured my neck and left shoulder a couple of weeks ago, so we've been laying low. I'm so thankful for wonderful help from family. Nick and the boys have been doing my physical daily chores like hauling loads of firewood onto the front porch, filling the bird feeders, and keeping the woodstoves going. My parents have come and Mom stayed with the boys while my dad drove me to a wonderful acupuncturist. The boys have had fun exploring life at our pond, and brought up specimens to examine and draw: Sweet Eli has run a "sandwich shop," to make... Continue reading
Posted Feb 16, 2020 at Adventures On a Rural Homestead