Wednesday, August 31, 2011

thank you

Do y'all know what the 5 Love Languages are?  The 5 Love Languages in a nutshell are the 5 different ways that people express and receive love.  They are : words of affirmation, acts of service, quality time, physical touch, and gifts.  You can read more about them here.

My Love Language is words of affirmation.  This means I tend to express love to others through compliments, and kind words.  I also feel the most loved when someone expresses love to me with words and compliments, either written or spoken.

I'm saying all this to say - thank you!  Over the past few weeks we've had several friends kind enough to try our beef, and they've let us know how much they enjoyed it through comments on this blog, texts, voicemails, etc.  This is especially meaningful to me because of that whole love language thing.

Your words have really made me feel good, and that means a lot!

If you didn't get to try the beef this time around, no worries!  You'll have another chance in a month or two.  You can be sure I'll let you know when it's ready.

Thanks again, y'all!

Sunday, August 28, 2011

state fair

We took our annual trip to the Kentucky State Fair last week. 

This was the beginning of the day, fresh and full of energy.  The whining had not yet begun.

My big boy birdie chose his own outfit that morning and it was just easier to roll with it.  His ensemble consisted of khaki shorts, boots, a curious george t-shirt, and a belt with an enormous belt buckle.  What can I say, the kid is inheriting his dad's sense of style.

We enjoyed all the exhibits, the petting zoo, the beef cattle (duh!), the border collies herding ducks, and most importantly, we enjoyed some fair food and ice cream.  For me a pineapple whip.  Yummy!  Oh, and the duck slide.  We can't miss the duck slide.  I could watch that thing all day.

So what I want to know, is the duck slide a Kentucky thing, or do other states have duck slides at their fairs too?  Who came up with the duck slide?  Who figured out that the ducks would continue going down the slide over and over again, just to get a tiny bite of food every time? 

This is how I feel about the fair:

Not really sure what's going on there, but whatever.  This is how baby girl birdie feels about the fair:

This is how boy birdie feels about ice cream:

Who doesn't feel this way about ice cream, though?

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

summer gazpacho

Do y'all know what gazpacho is?

Gazpacho is a cold, tomato based soup that can be eaten as an appetizer or a light main course.  If you are like me, the last thing I want when it's 90 degrees outside is a bowl of hot soup.

Enter gazpacho.  This soup is so refreshing, sometimes I just drink it from a mug instead of bothering with a bowl and spoon.

My favorite recipe for gazpacho came from my Aunt Cathy who was kind enough to share it with me!

Here's how you make it:

In a large bowl combine:
1 c. peeled tomatoes, finely chopped
1/2 c. finely chopped green pepper
1/2 c.  peeled, chopped cucumber
1/4 c. chopped onion (red onion is especially good or a mild sweet onion)
2 tsp. minced parsley
1 tsp. snipped chives (I leave these out if I don't have them)
2 large cloves garlic, minced
3 T. red or white wine vinegar

2 T. olive oil
1 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. freshly ground pepper
1/2 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
4 c. tomato juice (or more depending on how thick you like your soup)
Chill.  Serve as an appetizer or cold soup. 

Easy peasy.  Try it, you'll like it.  And, it's good for you!

And one more thing.  For an easy way to peel tomatoes, get a sauce pan full of water simmering on the stove.  Cut an X in the bottom of your tomatoes and place in the simmering water for about 30 seconds.  Remove from the water, and the peel will come off easily with a knife.

Monday, August 22, 2011



Someone around here turned three and I didn't even mention it.

There was a cake and ice cream, and lots of family, and probably the best thing was...

A new tractor!

Happy Birthday Big Boy Bird!

Sunday, August 21, 2011

tragedy and hope

A friend of ours passed away unexpectedly this weekend.

He was young and healthy but suffered a massive stroke.  He left behind a wife and young son.

My heart breaks for this family.

His wife is devastated, of course, but generously, bravely made the decision to donate his organs.  Because he was young and healthy, our friend's organs have the potential to give hope and help to 100 families! 


I ask for your prayers tonight.  For our friend's wife and son.

Hug your family.  Tell them you love them. 
Try not to take anything for granted - we are all so blessed. 
Get right with God. 

Choose to donate your organs - what an amazing, selfless gift for another person.

Monday, August 15, 2011

a few things

I felt the need to share some of the stuff rattling around in my head this Monday morning.  Bear with me...

We went to a wedding this weekend.  An outdoor wedding.  As we were seated, the rain clouds started rolling in.  As the beautiful bride walked down the aisle it started to pour rain and the wind was blowing like 40 miles per hour.  You know what the best part was though?  No one left!  They had like, the quickest ceremony ever, they kissed, everyone cheered like crazy and we all ran back to our cars!  The bride and groom even took photos in the rain afterward.  Daddy Bird said it was the best wedding he had ever been to.

I was married before digital photography.  That makes me old.

I looked at our wedding photos last night.  This is really bad - we have all the proofs, but we never ordered prints!  Oops!  Does that make me a bad person?  Depends on who you talk to.

I love coffee.  I mean I really, really love coffee.  I especially love iced coffee in the summer.  I've been using this recipe from the Pioneer Woman, only in decaff and I'm not sure life would be the same without it.

Girlie Bird is a really great sleeper.  She has been sleeping from 10-6:30 or 7 pretty consistently for over a month now.  However, for the past 2 nights she's been waking up at 2 or 3 in the morning.  Seriously?  What's up with that?

I got mastitis last week.  Hmmm.  Not fun.  We're all good now though.

I really just want my son to poop in the toilet.  I really do.  I'm so over dirty diapers.  Is there some kind of potty training camp I can send him to?

I went to a baby shower this weekend and Daddy Bird's cousin made all the food.  It was
A-MAZING!  I'm hoping to get some recipes to share with ya'll this week.

I may or may not have eaten a big piece of strawberry cake at the shower with the full knowledge that the Girly Bird may or may not break out in a rash when I eat strawberries.  I just really needed that cake.  Does that make me a bad mother?  Depends on who you ask.  No rash yet.

My cousin Patrick just climbed a freakin' mountain!  Check it out!

Now that my brain is empty, I think I'll head off to bed. 

Here's to a night of uninterrupted sleep?

Saturday, August 6, 2011

what's a ruminent?

Are ya'll ready for your ag lesson of the day?  Here's a post written by Daddy Bird for your reading enjoyment.

How can cows and other herbivores survive on grass alone?

A cow is a ruminant, and a ruminant has four stomachs.  The first stomach is called the Rumen, which is a large fermentation vat.  The Rumen can hold 40 gallons of food!  In this large fermentation vat (Rumen), cows have bacteria that break down grass.  It is actually those bacteria, as they die in the Rumen that provide much of the nutrition and protein that the cow needs. 

Have you ever heard of a cow chewing it's cud?  Well, when a cow rests after grazing they will sit in the shade and chew their cud.  They actually regurgitate Rumen contents and re-chew their food.  This allows the cow to break down the grass into smaller pieces to make it easier to digest.

So what are the other three stomachs?
One is the Reticulum, which is a small stomach attached to the Rumen.  Another is the Omasum which has multiple folds like the pages of a book.  These folds absorb nutrients.  Last is the Abomasum which is much like our stomach and secretes gastric acid and digestive enzymes.

So what are some other ruminants?  Sheep, goats and buffalo are all ruminants.

Horses are not ruminants.  They have one stomach much like ours (humans) but they also have a very large cecum (like a huge Appendix) and a very large colon.  The Cecum acts kind of like the cow's Rumen and holds 8 gallons, while the horse's colon can hold approximately 20 gallons of digesting food and liquid.

Thanks Daddy Bird!

Friday, August 5, 2011

the beef is in

The Girly Bird and I drove down to Marksbury Farm in Lancaster yesterday to pick up our beef.  It was almost an hour and a half one way.  I'm not complaining, just sayin'.

We made burgers for dinner, and if I do say so myself, the beef is goooood.  There's always a bit of unknown with grass fed beef.  It can taste a bit different with each steer depending on what they were eating, their age, etc.  This one worked out really well, and Daddy Bird and I breathed a collective sigh of relief.  Ahhhhhhh.

Then the fun began.  We were up past 1 AM parceling out all the beef that had been prepurchased, and then freezing it.  Ugghh.  This morning came a bit too early.

All our steaks and roasts are sold.  We've got lots of ground beef left.  If you are local and may be interested, drop me an email at

Happy Friday - I'm off to bed.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

a package from japan, via atlanta

My Mom came over Monday and we loaded up the two birdies and took a trip to the zoo.  When we got back, there was a package in the mail for the girlie bird from my cousin Meredith.  Meredith lives in Atlanta, and the last time she was in town visiting she mentioned that she and her brother Patrick (also my cousin, duh!) had picked a little something up for the new little birdie when she was in Japan visiting. 

Patrick lives and works in Japan.  You can read all about it on his blog, which he doesn't update very often, but when he does it's super interesting. :)


I tore into the package and this is what I pulled out:

What a sweet little baby kimono!!!  How thoughtful of them!

Look at these exquisite details:

The sewing part of me is nuts over this decorative stitching

And I love the little pleats on the arms

I'm seriously thinking about framing this when she outgrows it.  It's really a keepsake as well as something to wear.

She looks cute in it too.

I've always really loved Asian inspired clothing and decor, so this is really the perfect gift.  Thanks Patrick and Meredith!