Superman celebrated his 6th birthday with a new outfit from Daddy and Mommy. Two new Signing Time dvds; Nice to Meet You from Nona and Happy Birthday to You from his adoring fans(aka siblings). Plus balloons, bubbles and a ball from some sweet friends at church.

Some of Superman's latest activities:
Is finally growing out of some shirts he's had since age 2.
Talking more and calls everyone by name.
Loves watching Signing Time and Zorro.
Getting his family to chase him around the table.
Bugs his Lalaline by 'borrowing' her dolly and refusing to return it.
Has a definite dislike for soups and whatever else he doesn't feel like eating at the moment.
Would entirely subsist on rice cakes and apple butter if we'd let him.
Is going to take speech therapy soon.
Favorite words: No. Loo (look). My.
Still has an obsession with blowing out candles
Decided that once again, he loves to open gifts (and this time tearing neatly).

Happy Birthday Superman!!! I you!

We've been working on a new blog, to catalog our journey of saying "Yes!". Sometimes being without gluten, dairy and processed sugars is a bit difficult. But during this time, we've found and adapted a few recipes that we can have. I Can't Believe It's A Pork-Free Chocolate Cake/Cupcakes is one of them.
Summer has gone by in a blur. Lots of Farmer's Markets to go to, although I didn't go. But there was bread to make and bake, tortillas, pretzels, and sometimes something else. By the end of the season, I figured out I could mix up 12 loaves of bread at a time by hand. Definitely saved some time with all the mixing! :-).

This past Sunday, Momma, James and I went to Atlanta for James to get his g-tube out early Monday morning. He was actually Dr. Parker's first surgery for the day. When Dr. P came to tell us James was in recovery, he also said that he'd had to make a bigger cut than usual, because of the gastric-colic fistula he'd had in March 2007. James, he said, would need a stronger antibiotic, but could take it at home. I asked if it would cause diarrhea and he said it would. Dr. P then told us that he could also admit James for an overnight and give him IV antibiotics that wouldn't cause diarrhea. We opted for an overnight. James was a huge apple juice fiend while we were there. On Monday alone, he drank 20 or so 4oz. boxes of apple juice!
I slept with him in the hospital bed, so Momma could rest for the trip home on Tuesday. I seriously think that the nurses and tech turned on ALL the lights everytime they came in. But what surprised me most, was the tech waking me up to ask if I minded changing James' diaper.  When he had his ileostomy take-down in June, the nurses and techs would change his cloth diapers without waking us up. And this time, I didn't bring enough diapers since I thought we wouldn't be there that long and he was in pull-ups. He's doing fine now, but has a small diaper rash.

I've been working on my math. With all of James' stuff in the last couple years, we've all fallen behind. I'm 'racing' through my current math book to finish it by my goal of Thanksgiving. I'm enjoying algebra, but sometimes I struggle with algebraic sentences.

I was reading through some old posts on this blog and noticed a post where I said my least favorite task was meal planning. I don't think it was intentional, but I've been doing all the meal planning lately and actually enjoying it. Momma even let me make the shopping list and do the shopping at Dekalb International Farmer's Market on Tuesday. It worked out well that we met a online friend of Momma's on Sunday at the Market and I was able to get prices for my list and work out how much I could get with the money I had. I did end up $1.58 over my budget because I'd forgotten about tax for the bag of rice. Oh well, something to remember for next time :*).

We also enjoyed visits with several families this summer. One family came a couple times... they have two little ones. Zeke is almost 3, but his speech is so much clearer than James'. James loved to play with Zeke and he doted on Lily Beth, their little girl. I think everyone loved having them visit. Becca and Carrie thought it was fun to take Zeke outside and run races up and down the driveway. He's a pretty good runner and kept up to them most of the time.

In October, we took a day trip up to North Georgia to see Nona and Poppa and pick up apples. Momma, Katie, James and I sang most of the way up and Daddy, Owen and Becca worked on math. Carrie decided to read a book!

I also got my hair cut late October. Katie wanted her hair cut and I wanted to get mine cut to send to Locks of Love again... So we cut each others' hair. I didn't realize how much mine would curl after we cut it. We thought it would end up shoulder length.  Apparently not.

For my 17th birthday, I was able to do something I've been thinking about since I was 15. Turns out that I could have done it when I was 16, but... I wasn't sure how it all worked and didn't want to call and ask. Momma had to make a trip to Macon and since Katie didn't have to go, she was able to keep everyone else and I was able to donate blood. I was a bit nervous that my hemoglobin would be too low to donate since it has to be 12.5 or higher, but it was fine. I was excited to be able to do it and it went quicker than I thought it would. I did learn that it's a good idea to take some sort of snack because water isn't quite enough. I'm hoping that it will work out so I can donate again in the beginning of December... Anyone want to join me? :*). 

Hoping everyone enjoyed their summers too.

♥, Hannah
From a photo shoot the other day with James... which wasn't exactly to take pictures of James, but of the diaper he's wearing. (for this). He's an awfully cute little guy... and a real stinker!

I was going through pictures tonight and downloading some old pictures off of CD's and came across several old ones and some new ones of James and I. We were all watching some of the videos we'd taken of James and Carrie especially and I couldn't get over how little James was then!

There's a giveaway on a blog Momma found that had a week of herb-related giveaways that start in the morning and end at midnight the same day. This is the last one and it ends at midnight tonight. It's for a $100 gift certificate to School Of Natural Health. They have a Family Herbalist course that I would love to take. Check it out here.

I do have pictures waiting to post and an update and I will get to it soon!

Thank you Hannah for thinking of me!

Here are the rules!
Post about the tag
2. Pick 10 bloggers who deserve this award
3. Leave a comment on the blogs of the people you tagged letting them know they were awarded
4. Answer the questions along with your post

1: Apples, Oranges or Bananas? Bananas!

2: How many siblings do you have? 6! K (18), O (14), B (10), C (7) and J (5 going on 2)

3: How old are you?  16

4: Do you live on/in a prairie, woodland, swamp, city or other? Other. We live on a big sand pile! :)

5: Scissors or glue? Scissors... we don't have any glue in the house! And if we did, J would be sure to dump it....

6: Describe your dream house.  I don't really know... except I'd like to have lots of closet space and a big kitchen.

7: Is your room clean? Seriously? yes and no...

8: If you could be a movie character for a day, who would you be? I don't think I'd want to be any female character.... but I would love to be a fly on the wall in the same room as Sherlock Holmes.

9: Italy, Greece, France, Spain or England? I'd love to go to Italy and France!

10: What denomination are you? Presby-Baptil-Costal ;)

11: Do you sleep with a stuffed toy (BE HONEST!!!!)  No... When I have slept with a stuffed toy, it lands on the floor besides the bed!

12: Gum, chocolate, or jelly beans? dark chocolate wrapped in a date. Not that you asked, but....

13: What is your favorite book? There's more than one.... However, one of my current favorites is To Have and To Hold.

14: Favorite ice cream flavour? Mint Chocolate Chip

15: If you had to eat one type of food for two weeks, what would that food be? Hamburgers!

16: What is your favorite Olympic sport? I love to watch the skating... when we do 'watch' the Olympics.

17: If you woke up and discovered that you had turned into Miley Cyrus for the day, what would you do (note, I am NOT a fan)? Um... stay in bed? (somehow I don't think that would go over well with the rest of my family!)

18: Describe yourself in three words. Competitive, Curious, Cautious

19: What chore do you hate? meal planning... 

20: If Elmo came into your room with a gun, what would you do? I have no clue.... by the way, who is Elmo? :)

I'm awarding this to:

McKenzie @ Pecan Pastures
Lauren E. @  Lauren E.'s Blog
Shelby @ Shelby's Everyday Homeschool Blog 
Abigail @ Amazed by Grace
Lydia @ Something Beautiful
Hannah W. @ Hannah's Blog

James is being discharged from the hospital this afternoon. We're currently in the library and James is drawing on a DoodlePro board. We'll be staying at the Ronald McDonald House tonight and then slowly make our way home tomorrow! yay!
James sitting in a Little Tikes car Tuesday night! He thought it was so fun to drive, but he couldn't understand why, when he turn the steering wheel that the wheels didn't turn that way too!
James' Beads of Courage. Each bead represents part of James' journey with leukemia. Hospital stays, surgeries, pokes, lines, chemo, etc... He also has a Purple Heart which signifies the end of treatment.
Wednesday afternoon, the clowns stopped by. James was starting to get fussy since he wanted to eat. The clowns kept him amused for 45+ minutes and by then, it was time to head to the OR.

This is James yesterday evening... he had been having breakthrough pain earlier and was tired. It didn't prevent him from watching Superman though! I do believe that when James is finally discharged I will have memorized the Superman episodes!

I'm hoping that James will be discharged this Tuesday. But nothing is definite yet and it all depends on James. He get out of bed and went for a ride in a wheelchair down to the library here. But we headed back shortly, since he was getting tired and hurting. James and I snuggled up and slept the rest of the afternoon away. Now he's back to watching Superman all snuggled in his soft green blanket the Child Life Specialist brought by this morning!

♥ Hannah ♥
Here's a quote I found on Facebook, that I really enjoyed!  Number 7 of What Southerners know about was my favorite!  

"A southern girl is a girl who knows full well that she can open a door for herself but prefers for the gentleman to do it because it demonstrates a sense of respect. After all, every girl wants to be treated like a princess. We know how to make sweet tea and grits. We pick our battles and fight with the heart of a pitbull while still maintaining grace and elegance. Our mystique is that of the soft-spoken, mild- mannered southern belle who could direct an army, loves her mama and will always be a daddy's girl."

What southerners know about:
1. The difference between a hissie fit and a conniption fit.
2. What general direction cattywumpus is.
3. That "gimme sugar" don't mean pass the sugar.
4. When somebody's "fixin" to do something, it won't be long.
5. A good dog is worth its weight in gold.
6. Real gravy don't come from the store.
7.The War of Northern Aggression was over state rights, not slavery.
8.When "by and by" is.
9.The difference between "pert' near" and "a right far piece."
10.The differences between a redneck, a good ol' boy, & trailer trash.
11.Never to go snipe hunting twice.
12.A belt serves a greater purpose than holding Daddy's pants up.
13.Rocking chairs and swings are guaranteed stress relievers.
14.Rocking chairs and swings with an old person in them are history lesson

"When life hands you a lemon put it in a glass of sweet tea and thank God you're a SOUTHERN GIRL!!"

I am not good at coming up with good meal plans... my sister K is far better than me in that regard. However this last week, Momma told me to just pull something out of the freezer for the next day's dinner. K suggested looking through one of her cookbooks, the River Cottage Meat Book, for a recipe. I used a recipe for a lamb roast, swapping out several ingredients and switching pork for lamb. It was a little dry since it stayed in an hour longer than it should have... (consequences of having siblings running the oven while one is gone) But the flavor was delicious and I am hoping to make it again... this time with garlicky mashed potatoes!

J has mild-moderate hearing loss in one ear and profound hearing loss in his other ear.
Recently we were blessed to receive some Love and Learning dvds and books from another family of a child with Ds. J really enjoys watching his 'school work'

I hope you all enjoy listening to J 'read' and hopefully, we'll be able to add more videos of J reading his other books!

O, B, and C dug a small pool two or so weeks ago and filled it with water. The next day, O and I dug the 'pool' deeper and made a slide out of dirt.

J thought it would be fun to play in the water.... that is until he actually got into it! Believe me, that boy has quite a healthy pair of lungs! :) In the end, J decided that as long as I held him, he was fine. He did eventually get off my lap to play with a plastic toy boat C brought over for him.

O very thoughtfully put up the canopy to shade the pool and James from the sun!
B caught reading a book!

K's birthday dinner... just waiting for the salmon. It was an absolutely delicious meal!
And now, I have a 18 year old sister! my goodness, how time flies!

Momma has more pictures of what country children do when they don't have a swing set over on One Big Adventure, plus an update on J's recent trip to Atlanta!

Meet Gusty.... aka Gustavus Adolphus snoozing on the side porch.

The treats after chicken processing... We had two families over who wanted to learn the 'how-to'.
We just did 75 chickens, since all of the 150 weren't big enough for slaughter yet. It made for a quick day. Although, we were all exhausted by the end of the day. J decided to finish up the day with some excitement by cutting his hand on a lounge chair on the porch... Poor baby! It's looking much better now, but we are still keeping it cover and putting antibiotic ointment on it.

So that's what we've been doing around here lately.... Hope you all enjoy the quick visit around the farm!

Around March 24th, we put 10 turkey eggs in the incubator... We were a bit apprehensive if the turkeys would actually hatch, since we had messed up several things during the 28 days. This past Monday, Momma, J and I had come back from the day's trip to Atlanta and we were making dinner when I checked the eggs. I was thrilled to see that one of the eggs was hatching!

The second egg that started cracking actually hatched out first and most of us got to see it happen.

Tuesday evening... so cute!

We moved them to a small brooder in the mudroom and they are already feathering out.... They're growing so fast! On May 5th, we have another batch of 20 turkey eggs in the brooder that, Lord willing, are due to hatch! We are hoping that the turkeys will lay more eggs to have another clutch, so far we have 4 eggs on the counter waiting for their turn in the incubator!
Or the nests, for that matter! B found a old bird's nest while helping Daddy with brush clearing. She brought it inside for all of us to see it. Of course, we took pictures after we positioned properly in a bush in front of the house.

The proud finder of the nest!

That's actually a plastic bag that was woven into the nest.

Look at her short hair! She cut it off, so she could donate it to Locks of Love.

Ah, the beauty of God's creation!

J really loves to dress up in a suit and tie (the tie is probably the most important, since he thinks it makes him look like Daddy, even though Daddy rarely wears one.) Yesterday, we were looking for an outfit J could wear today to Atlanta for an appointment and J found a tie. We pulled out a suit J was given back in 2007 (he was almost 3 then) and it still fits him, probably because he's gotten taller and slimmed down from all the steroids.

B, C, and I took J outside and got some pictures of him all dressed up with the new camera from Grandpa John and Grandma Nan (Thank you so much!)

I do have some more pictures to post, but they are on the other computer, so they will have to wait for right now! But they are some great pictures of things we've been doing around here!