"You cannot legislate the poor into freedom by legislating the wealthy out of freedom. What one person receives without working for, another person must work for without receiving. The government cannot give to anybody anything that the government does not first take from somebody else. When half of the people get the idea that they do not have to work because the other half is going to take care of them, and when the other half gets the idea that it does no good to work because somebody else is going to get what they work for, that my dear friend, is about the end of any nation.

You cannot multiply wealth by dividing it."
Dr. Adrian Rogers 1931-2005

Monday, October 31, 2011

Photo Post Alert!

I am from a large family. Over the years we all have been busy raising families and moving every which way the wind blew us(or careers). Since mom died in February, it seems like we are all trying harder to connect and be more involved with each other and our lives.

With that-a wedding was the perfect place to bring many together! My dear sweet niece Katie married last Friday and oh how incredible the wedding was! Although I was not able to go due to Bill's surgery, Bill and I wanted to send Fourth to represent our branch of the family. I confess that I missed that cutie pie, but she has been having a wonderful time!!

Here are a few photos of the Ohio Wedding~ or more correctly of my family~My sister Carrie, her charming husband Vince and Fourth!

Fourth with my oldest brother Dave's oldest two children...Anne and David!

My daughter and cousin Tony- the bride's brother(or my sister Cathy's son)

My baby and her sweet uncle that shares a birthday with her. My handsome brother UJ

Aunties and my daughter. My sister Anna-on the right and Carrie on the left.

My niece Anne again...and forever and always I have called her Annie Fanny. So sorry Annie Fanny such is life!

Ok this is my niece Danielle's baby Zoey. She is my sister Liz's grandbaby. Danielle posted this photo and said today Zoey dressed as a computer geek of sorts. I say she dressed as an adorable cutie!!

Anna and Sami her husband. Aren't they so cute?

I saved this photo for last as it chokes me up every time I look at it. This is my sister Cathy her husband Scott and my niece Katie...as they walked her down the aisle. Oh Cathy I love how you are so emotional in this photo. I promise I will be the same with my goof troop too.

Thank you all for being so amazing to my baby. Thank you for spoiling her and treating her like she had mom and dads all over. I love you all...

Saturday, October 29, 2011

This and That

This: We had to go back to El Paso because Bill had a small infection following his surgery. I have discovered something somewhat shocking~I was paying attention to the doctor when he was cleaning the incision and realized that it was because I was doing so just in case I ever needed to do so here on the farm. When the doctor takes out the staples next week, I actually asked if I could take a few out. My how life takes you on paths you never thought you would end up on.

That: My daughter flew to Ohio last week to go to her cousin's wedding.
Here is lovely Katie and her bridesmaids.

Fourth went alone and actually met some aunts and uncles for the first time. We have lived out west all of her life and my family is from back east so some of my siblings she has only met via phone and the computer. It has been nice to see photos of her with so many members of my side of the family! She returns in a few days and I can't wait to hear of her experiences and hug her!

This: I am not a city person! Going to my city of 30 plus thousand is city enough for me. I like that occasionally I will see people I know and traffic is never a problem. I have been to El Paso three times since Bill's surgery and confess that driving there gives me a neck ache! The minute I got outside the city I relaxed. The population of El Paso is around 800,000 and Juarez, Mexico(right across the border) with about 2 million- I hope one understands why things may be a bit hectic~ 3 cars go on the road to my house unless a delivery is happening-just to give some perspective. I sure love my simple life.

And That: I stripped the garden because we had frost last night. I ended up with 420 green Roma tomatoes, about 200 cayenne peppers, 5 lbs of potatoes, 6 bird feeder gourds, 4 patty pan squash, 20 finger zucchini and a watermelon. I have 4 pumpkins left in my summer garden. I am so pleased with what we were blessed with. The garden produced so much for the family and I already have so much stored up for the winter. We have a bit left to do to prepare for the winter and with my second son we will wrap things up. We are going to butcher two turkeys, six hens and two roosters in the next few weeks then I will take a breather before starting next years plans!

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Sick of Occupiers UPDATED in bold in post

I am sick and tired of the occupiers.
I could care a less that a teeny portion of folks have so much wealth.
It is not the wealth of others that should concern anyone. It is the wealth we ourselves have that should be the issue.
When one proclaims poverty and lives in the United States we must be take a moment and truly assess their poverty.
So here goes:
Images of poverty of the occupiers:

Excuse me, I made a mistake...the above images are not of the poor woebegone Americans occupying cities around the USA. These images are of those that understand true poverty.
Here are the images I meant to post showing the occupiers:

Photo Credit: Jordan Malter

Note the gaunt faces of these poor lads. And the clothing-and the warm leather jacket, oh and the well groomed beard and clean hands...and banner sewn lovely to champion Poverty in the US.

The occupiers have it so bad that it has become a money maker for some filthy capitalist.

Photo Credit Julianne PepitoneOnce again, please note how frail and thin the occupiers are. With no tarps or tents to shelter them. No large plastic bins of surplus items from home that they have to do without...oh and no suitcases, no comfy couches, no well combed hair, no jewelry. Oh these poor~ poor Americans.

Photo Credit: Julianne Pepitone

Look how scrawny and underfed these occupiers are. Thank goodness they have someone to lead them in Tai chi and yoga...most times these poor folks loose weight because they have no food. What a blessing for them to exercise while being so~ so~ so poor. My how sad it is that they all appear in such filthy rags, with unkempt hair. Poor Americans...thank you for allowing the world to see how harsh conditions are for you.

Photo credit: Daniel Fitzsimmons
UPDATE: I removed Daniel Fitzsimmons photograph because he asked me to do so.  If you would like to see the image I had here originally, please click on his name. 

The pain of sharing these images has been horrible. I mean poor in America have so little. How dare the rich treat the poor so bad?!! I mean the poor here in America have only cell phones, Ipods, incredible cameras, sunglasses, backpacks, comfy shoes, shower facilities, food, clothing, bicycles, cars, computers, homes, oh and one extra special little bitty thing. Many of the occupiers have college loans. HOLY SMOKES!! Poor in the USA go to college after attending schools that are free. Oh and the public schools that provide FREE education also transport the children each day and will feed any child breakfast and lunch on USA's dime.

If that is not enough...over 45* million Americans are given food benefits.
And guess what? EVERY Emergency Room in the nation will treat ANYONE-regardless of finances.

Oh and these poor Americans that are moaning and crying about how that darn 1 percent is a problem need to BE QUIET.

Here are some images of Americans we should be thankful for and I am not going to beat around the bush. Many Americans are exactly like my family...
Which is one where the dreams of my father are upon a Memorial Wall in Washington DC
Captain David P. Gibson KIA April 8, 1967

Where my second son is one of the 71% that make up our volunteer fire departments across the nation. Second is on the right.

Oh and the young man on the left? That is my oldest. I chose this image as our soldiers are seen as one, unidentifiable aside from the uniform...yet while sometimes months from being considered a child in the US, the men and women in uniform serve all of us. They do so not because someone is so wealthy or so poor...but because there still are a few that do appreciate that America is an incredible place, but she needs to have her people stand and work for her. She cannot serve them. Through the sweat of every generation we have stood and become the place of hope. People are not trying to flee this land...no they are sneaking in daily. Trust me, I live on the southern border.

So to the occupiers- I say GO HOME. We need not have you pretend to stand for any of us. Most, instead share a legacy similar to my family~here on the farm and thank God for that.

Jennifer not a percentage, not a hyphenated American-
instead quite simply
an American

*edited I had 14 million

Monday, October 24, 2011

Things that Inspire

I save photos of images that inspire me. Often seeing how someone else was innovative allows for me to do the same. This is from a magazine from the 1930's with Armstrong Furniture. I see a floor pattern that inspires. I have one floor I painted : my dining room...I see something like the above photo in the near future~somewhere in the house.

This lamp was on Etsy dot com. I love it!! I love Pyrex dishware...and well unique things.

Love this pantry. I am slowly but surely weaning myself from buying processed foods. Will I ever get to the point where we have so much of our own canned and preserved foods? I don't know but I am heading to that direction.

LOVE LOVE LOVE the street! I see paths like this around the farm...and have slowly been working on this.

This is a magazine page from Simple Living in England. Check out the items re purposed from tin cans on the left side~totally inspiring!

Oh and the creation of the Creator is a daily reminder of His inspiration. We need nothing more than to open our eyes to see what He has made.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Saturday Six

This morning I went outside to capture what 44 F looks like. Brr for me because I opted to photograph the morning in my lovely pink pajamas. I do love living in the middle of nowhere.

Here are six photos of things around the farm:
wood ready for woodstove

Surprise pumpkin growing between tires in raised bed garden! Something about pumpkins on the farm makes me smile! Remember Mesquite pumpkins?

Second has a duty vehicle now. As I was walking to take photos I loved how the pre-sunrise looked over his car!

Cayenne Peppers in the raised bed garden

Old bench outside the garden. Well more accurately ~old bench end!!

Front door wreath. The wreath is from my grape vines from our first home-re purposed. Pine cones from NM and of course glue gun burns on fingertips totally free!

Six random extras

Hot Chocolate Mix
5 cups instant powdered milk
3/4 cups sugar
1/4 cup cocoa
1/2 tsp salt.

Add 1/2 cup mix to 1 cup of hot water

The whole duty of man

Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: Fear God, and keep is commandments: for this is the whole duty of man.
Ecclesiastes 12:13

Blast off
A Rocket Stove actually is as cool as it sounds (or hot!?)
I think that Double Nickel Farm will be researching more on rocket stoves.

Facebook Status of my cousin's daughter:
IT'S A BOY!!! finally getting a brother today!!!! She has three sisters and the oldest is getting married today. Seems like I love my first cousin once removed perspective!! ( I did have to look up what our exact relationship is!) Wedding wishes to Amanda and Doug <3

Hot water is a wonderful thing
I love taking hot baths! Not the kind that are for scrubbing, but the kind where a book and long restful relaxation is involved. For the record I am going to take a hot boiling bath in just a few minutes!

It is never too late to learn a new skill or task.
self explanatory...

Friday, October 21, 2011

Bill is Home

and is doing well. Recovery will be several weeks/months... I am a wee bit tired but very thankful.

He had a view of Mexico from his hospital room. I am thankful for the hospital staff as they were so kind and compassionate during his surgery and stay.

Bill's view now is the lovely Sacramento Mountains~or as I call them "My mountains!"

We rearranged a bit, knowing of his surgery and recovery and placed the bed so he can look out to the mountains and see our critters wander to and fro. Mental health is a key for physical recovery...I know it and I am glad we are here to be the support and strength that Bill needs. He has been there for all of us for so long, it is nice we can be there for him.

Monday, October 17, 2011

A bit more than a foot...

I would like to share a story. 16 years ago on October 9th I delivered my precious Fourth. She was due on December 21...so not only were we prepared to expect the worst, it seemed like nearly every thing that could go wrong, did.

After months of problems and being life flighted to Loma Linda Medical Center in California labor could not be stopped. Ten weeks before she was due, she was on her way. Technology was a bit off back then as I was told she was a boy. And this added to our silly worries-I suppose focusing on non important things and worrying about them helped during a very frightening pregnancy.

The reason I worried was because each of my pregnancies were horrific. I was told I could not have any more children after my third son so I wanted to name the third baby something that shared my gratitude of being blessed with him. I have not shared my children's names but this time I will (somewhat) to explain~you see I named my third son- Third Blessing (in Spanish-of course). When we were told that the fourth baby was a boy, I was thinking wow, I think I may have to name him Fourth which is cuatro in Spanish. Third in Spanish is tres which works nicely with the nickname Trey, but how on earth would cuatro ever work? But I decided I had committed myself on this path so I was going to deliver a Cuatro.

Anyway...delivery was horrific. Problems arose. The staff began to put IV's in...while I was awake...one in my neck. Bill was pulled out of the room and the last thing I remember was my little tiny teeny preemie cried-LOUD.

Baby spent a long time in NICU.
Baby was diagnosed with terminal illness.
Baby was given a year.
Then after a year it was adjusted to age5.

Look at my preemie now! Doing well and outliving what doctors predicted.
Funny how a baby that was just a touch longer than a ruler(13 inches) and weighed about 2.5 cans of beans is not only here with her family but she has been an example to us all in how to survive and thrive even when all is lost(medically).

She had several years of specialized care in and out with surgery and have oxygen for a good while...yet all that is visible(if you know where to look) are a few scars.

One for an IV site that is raised scar tissue on an ankle and an incision scar on her back several inches long.

My Cuatro was nameless though.

I mean I had boys.

And only boy names.

And I barely had to come up with names as I was kind of a traditionalist. One named after my husband and one named after my father-in-law.

Third one thanking God for allowing us to be blessed with our sons.

What on earth should we name this precious baby?

Back to traditional but maybe a name from my family. I have several sisters so I made a name up using the first and second letters of my sisters names and I added an A to wrap her name up as she is female and in Spanish a usually on the end of a word is feminine. I am very happy to say that I made her middle name my mother's middle name.

Oh this cutie. She has been prayed about, over and for so often. I am thankful she is part of our lives and learned that sometimes day by day is how you are to live and not further. I worked hard to make every day we had with her special so that her brothers would have happy memories of a sister I thought was terminal. After a few months it became habit. It is far easier to have a happy day by making each day the best day.

I can say without a doubt EVERY day with my baby as well as all my children and husband has been a blessing. Not perfect...but blessings that I thank my Father in heaven that I have had.

As I seem to have rambled a good deal I seem to have an announcement now that I am changing course~

I have a few photos to share of my cutie, my baby, my sweet precious Fourth and her day.

I made her cake. Now you all are for sure that I am not Martha Stewart posing, but I did enjoy this creation. The petals are flattened green tootsie rolls~ easy smeesy!!

Cell phone photo of Fourth and dinner on the table. She opted for hotdogs, mac and cheese and pickles and baked potatoes...ps I think the look is because she comes from a family that is NOT musically talented and at this very moment she was being shouted (sang to) Happy Birthday!

It is sometimes hard to see beyond today when you are living in a crisis, believe me, I know. The challenge is then this...don't try to. Focus on one day at a time.

And my dear Fourth thanks for pink. After years of blue and rough and tough you softened the home in a way that has made all the difference.

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Sometimes Life Takes Over


I have been missing from Blogland due to unplanned and planned events.

First~computer issues. If it is not something, I suppose it is another applies here.

Second~the kids (correction young adults) continue to take steps forward in life...which is exciting and time consuming.

Third~the farm. Each year takes us closer to what we foresaw when we moved to a sorry piece of land overlooked for several years by many. That sorry piece of land will never be called sorry ever again. It is my corner, my piece of America that holds all that encapsulates what I value in the American Dream. Oh and it is NOT free, and the price has been the sweatequity of every member of the family.

And with this I also have had the heaviness of heart with mixed emotions upon surgery my sweetie will have this week. It has been something we have prayed about and know is what can make life better but with surgery is of course the bottom line in life- it comes risks. I have been failing miserably trying to carry myself strong and be supportive. I love my husband far more than I could ever adequately express and cannot imagine life without him. He is who I think of when I laugh, when I cry, when I think of something, when I see an amazing sight or when I just wish to sit alone with him near me. Who would think it? I know when I married I was raised to be my own person...be independent and strong and never really need a man. Sigh, what a sad way to raise women. The fulfillment and joy I have experienced for these past 23 years reaches beyond measure and had I given in to the bring home the bacon, fry it up in a pan nonsense I would have missed out on the Universe so I could have the Earth.

I pray for my readers if they have a moment to pray for my Bill. Pray for the surgeon's and staff that work on him, and pray for our family. The power of prayer is magnificent. It is power in unity.

oh and in case I haven't shared in a while-I live and am comforted by Philippians 4:13- I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.