We acquired a couple of new barn cats to live with the sheep. Their insulated house isn’t finished yet, so they’re living in the garage for the time being.

This is Percy.

This is Arty. She’s very snuggly.

What’s going on here?

Oh. The guys discovered that you can actually lift pieces of the giant slab of ice that’s covering our yard. It only looks like snow, it’s not really.

Notice that it’s warm enough that Papa doesn’t feel the need to wear gloves. This weather is quite a big change from last year.

Even taller.


Someone knocked down part of the wall, but BigKid will fix it.

Who, me? I don’t knock things over!

Snow & Ice

Oh! Mom! There’s snow on the deck! Can we shovel it off into a big pile like we did last year?

Oh, there’s not very much? Oh, well, we can just make a small pile, right?

Snow is fun! There’s not very much snow. Mom says there’s lots of ice underneath, but it still looks like snow to me.

Come on, SmallKid. Let’s run on the ice!

Come on, SmallKid! We’re running, not falling! Silly sister.

Didja see me crash, Mom? That was so fun!

Oh no! I fell down again!

Christmas Concert

Last night was BigKid’s very first Christmas concert. Apparently, the kid loves performing (who knew?!), because the whole way home she was trying to figure out when she would get to have her next Christmas concert. “I’ll have lots and lots of them, right Mommy?”

She did a great job too. So much fun to watch. It was just their class, about 20 minutes long, but it was perfect for them. And SmallKid got to talk to all the babies and grandmas who came to watch, so she was in heaven.


Santa Claus is Coming to Town

Yesterday was the local Christmas potluck. We went and had a fantastic supper, and all the kids ran around like fools. Poor SmallKid was the only little kid who was brave enough to be running with the big kids, so she got left behind a lot, but she didn’t seem to mind too much.

After supper, there was a hay ride through the village to look at the houses that had lights. The kids had a ton of fun. The slightly bigger kids spent the whole time jumping off the trailer into the snow and scrambling back up again.

All you get is poor quality cell phone pictures though, because I completely forgot to bring my camera. And I discovered this morning that the batteries were dead anyway.


After the hay ride, we all came back to the hall, and there were carols to sing and little kids on stage telling jokes.

And then;

It really needs to be watched in full-screen to get the expression. None of us could figure out if she was going to laugh or cry. She ended up laughing and excited, but I had already shut off the recording so I could go get her if she was actually scared.


SmallKid waited right there in line until it was her turn, and she was more than happy to sit there and listen to him, but of course, she refused to actually talk to him.


Then it was BigKid’s turn. Santa brought little bags with oranges and candy. BigKid says she forgot to tell him what she wants for Christmas, so she needs to write a letter.


SmallKid had a bit of candy out of her bag and decided that that was a pretty good racket. Sit on Santa’s lap and get a bag of candy.


So she went back to see if it would work a second time.

Virtues assembly

BigKid’s school has a specific virtue they focus on teaching the kids each month, along with a bigger focus on just being good people, and BigKid got a recognition for last month’s empathy focus. The principal said that BigKid always works really hard doing her work, she helps clean up and she helps other kids. And BigKid got to pick a school pen as an award.

She was really a lot more excited about it than it appears.


All kinds of excitement around here, there should be a bunch of posts in the next bit. For now though, the pictures I have resized already.

My farm is expanding! I say my farm instead of our farm, because the farm bit is really my project. Andrew helps when I need it, but he’d rather not have to do any more than that. Animals inhibit his travel bug.

Three Border Leicester ewes, bred for lambs in the spring. They have beautiful, soft wool that I’ll shear in late spring and (with some friends) clean and spin into yarn. They arrived Monday night, after a few days on a livestock truck, so they’re dirtier (and more straw-covered) than they would be otherwise. They’re nice and calm and gentle, but they’re friendlier than I expected them to be, and very curious about all the new people and things here.

They don’t have names yet, but I’ll decide on something soon. They have pretty distinctive markings though, so they shouldn’t be too difficult to tell them apart.

As soon as I manage to procure a sheep halter or instructions for making one (three), they’ll be halter trained so I can take them out to graze the lawn in the summer. We’ll also put up more fence, but for now the corral is plenty big enough.

Don’t worry, there’s no grain in that tub. The grain tubs got moved out of the pen, that one just has oyster shell and granite grit in it. It doesn’t smell like food, and if they decide to open it anyway, I’m reasonably certain that they won’t be trying to eat shells & rocks.

Happy little kids.

A few more photos for you. We’ll do scenery later, but there are a ton of adorable kid pictures. And more than that of blurry, happy, racing-around-crazy kid pictures.


We stayed in the apartment complex that Lindsay & Ross were living in, right across the pool. It was pretty handy for when we needed to talk to them (and the cell rates were $3/min.), just flash the porch light or stand on the balcony & wave your arms to get their attention. The pool was actually pretty nice, even Papa got in. BigKid spent the most time in there, with whatever tall minions she could coerce.

SmallKid got sick and didn’t want to swim too much. The 60-degree Celsius temperature climb and all the new germs didn’t do very well for her, and we ended up taking her to a pediatrician when we couldn’t get her fever down and couldn’t keep any liquids in her. But the doctor was wonderful and we got her some medicine and she turned right around.

We went out to see the ruins at Tulum. Of course, we didn’t think to check the cruise ship schedules, and there were hundreds of people there.

It was pretty, but hard to get pictures without extra people  in them. And people who totally ignore you and your kid standing there and just park themselves 2 inches from her shoulder.

It was a wee bit hotter than she’s used to.

Papa & I were dawdling taking pictures and got left behind for a while.

While everyone else found a nice set of shady stairs to rest on.

Gave away the camera and had to wait until everyone was done being excited about iguanas.

Oh, there they are!

After the ruins at Tulum, we went to the beach at Tulum. My kids hate the beach, as you can see. Actually, they were quite put out that we went to the ruins first instead of the beach.



Hey look, I’m dirty.

Isn’t it awesome?!

Pretty rough

I’m still working on these. I have about 700 pictures to go through and we only got back at 2 this morning. But you know. My kids hate the beach, so it shouldn’t be too hard to choose.