the job I am most proud of

It is easier to build strong children than to repair broken men.

~Frederick Douglas

Posted in bundle of baby, family first | 3 Comments

too many hats

If you are a regular around here, you know that things on the blog get a bit sporadic come late spring and summer.  Family fun is in full swing and we are enjoying the Washington sun while it’s here.  The blog is my outlet for writing and where I share what we are doing, so it’s a place that I always come back to. 

Over the past three weeks, my musings have been really absent due to a wrench that got thrown in our plans.  Our wrench is Jacob’s back.  Last week he had a microdiscectomy – layman’s terms: back surgery.  Continue reading

Posted in family first | 6 Comments

garden go-to

Our garden is in full swing and it’s really looking like we are going to pull in a great harvest this year.  My May freelance article for our local community co-op newsletter focused on how and why I rely on the co-op for keeping my garden plan organized, affordable and most importantly – organic and local.  The article is targeted towards shoppers in my neck of the woods, but has some excellent points to take with you the next time you shop for your garden.  Enjoy!

Click here for the PDF version of the article

Click here for the the PDF version of the entire Community Co-op May Newsletter

Below is the article in its entirety for your reading enjoyment! Continue reading

Posted in glorious gardening, home & hearth, oh! it's organic!, waste not, want not, where the locals go! | Leave a comment

carbon footprint 2011

Now, that it is May and we are approaching the hump of 2012, I figured it was time to unveil the Ferry Family’s Carbon Footprint for 2011.  This is my annual tradition (albeit one that it is usually done much earlier in the year, but who’s counting) and is a way for me/you/the whole wide world to gauge where we are as far as consumption goes and what choices we are making that have added up to our carbon footprint.

I looked at our answers and our consumption and I am really not sure how much more we can reduce our usage.  I am going to reevaluate things as the year progresses, but it is my hunch (and slight fear) that we have reached our minimum, or are at least we are very near it.

Side note: January 1, 2010 was the kick off point for our family’s project and our goal of reducing our carbon footprint.  The term “carbon footprintContinue reading

Posted in family first, glorious gardening, home & hearth, nice & natural, oh! it's organic!, random rants, supper & sustenance, waste not, want not, where the locals go! | 4 Comments

giveaway winner – redraws – updates

It’s time to do a bit of house cleaning around the blog.  I lost my head with a husband who worked for six weeks straight (literally), a last minute trip to California with two small children that left Jacob and I need of a serious vacation and a garden that opened up wide and readied itself for spring with mammoth weeds, sky high grass and a plethora of plans for vegetables, fruits and other delights.

So, here are the bits and pieces that needed to get handled.  Well, it’s the first round of schtuff.  A girl can only do so much cleaning, ya know?

Here we go!  Please get your drum rolls ready!

The winner of the giveaway of PÜR Gum is… JACKIE

The winner of the giveaway of the book Confessions of a Bad Beekeeper is… LILY KWAN

The winner of the giveaway of the book Bernardin Complete Book of Home Preserving is… KATHERINE

The winner of the giveaway of an organic cotton velour cozie from CastleWare is… CHRISTINE @ MAMA PAPA BARN

And, finally the re-draw re-draw winner of the giveaway for an organic cloth diaper from Babee Greens is…LAURIEL

Congratulations you all!

Please email me your full name, address and color choice and size (for the cozie) by Friday, May 25th.

Posted in bundle of baby, busy beekeeping, gimme that giveaway, home & hearth, oh! it's organic!, practically personal, what a winner! | 1 Comment

growing in the garden

The garden is planted and, despite the very best combined efforts of both my children to completely consume my entire day, it’s lookin’ good.  The plants are doing swell and it’s only the first half of May.

Gardening is a learning process.  Every year I pick up new things, tweak some things, make changes and keep the oldies-but-goodies around, too.

Here’s an up to date post of where the garden is at!  Happy Spring! Continue reading

Posted in family first, glorious gardening, oh! it's organic! | 3 Comments

jet setting to sunshine

Where’d I go?  I’ve missed you all so.  We flew straight outta Washington and headed for sunshiney California.  We found out last minute that Jacob had a week off after working 42 of the last 45 days and we snagged some last minute airline deals (relatively speaking), packed up quick and braced ourselves for a whirlwind trip to the CA-south.

We rode merry-go-rounds

We spun ourselves silly Continue reading

Posted in family first, where the locals go! | 2 Comments

lucky number 7

Happy SEVEN month birthday to our roly-poly, swingy, crawly, smiley, giggly, teethy cutie Camden Rose!  You are a joy!

Posted in bundle of baby, family first, random rants | 3 Comments

bubble recipe

I don’t know about you, but Beckett can chase and blow bubbles for-ev-er.  Here is a great recipe for homemade bubble mix.

  • 1/4 cup dish soap
  • 3/4 cup cold water
  • five drops of glycerin (available at natural food stores)

Mix everything together and enjoy!


Posted in cool crafts, family first, nice & natural | Leave a comment

cheesy claims

We subscribe to only two magazines and they are both publications we rely on for continuous streams of information and support their philosophies.  My favorite has to be the Nutrition Action Healthletter from the Center for Science in The Public Interest.  I recently read a great article from their March 2012 and I thought I’d pass it on.  I am big in to food transparency and knowing what the claims mean on the labels.

Cheesy Claims: What does it mean?

  • Natural: Any cheese that hasn’t been processed can be called “natural”.  Processed cheese has been heated to a liquid state and then flattened/cooled into sheets.  Think American cheese…
  • Lactose Free: All hard cheeses are lactose free (or close to it).  Why?  Lactose, the sugar in milk, gets broken down and fermented into lactic acid  by the same bacteria that turn milk into cheese.I thought that this was really interesting.  I just assumed all cheese made from cows’ milk had lactose because milk has lactose.  You learn something new everyday.
  • Low-carb: The only carb in cheese in lactose, so all cheese is low-carb.
  • Gluten free: A viable option if you need to avoid the trace amounts of gluten that might be in food from being made in the same plant as breads, crackers or other grain foods.

Source: Nutrition Action Healthletter, March 2012; page 14

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