Friday, September 2, 2011

Five Things for Friday, 14th Edition


Pickles and Peaches! That is what I am up to my elbows in this week. My uncle's garden has been producing cucumbers like crazy and so I've been busy making pickles. I made some for the first time last year and now I am totally spoiled. Homemade ones are so much better!

My cousin and I also went and picked several bushels of peaches and have been "putting them up". It has been a lot of fun. There is something deeply satisfying to me about canning things and it always seems like things I preserve myself always taste 10 times better that things I buy at the store. It think it is mostly because I know how much hard work went into it!


I am so excited that Cocoa from Chocolate on My Cranium and Jocelyn from from We Talk of Christ are doing another celebration for "The Family: A Proclamation to the World" this year. Their celebration last year was incredible and I am really looking forward to seeing what they have put together this year.

The celebration will be from
September 9th – September 23rd and Jocelyn will be focusing on teaching the proclamation to younger children, Shannon from The Red Headed Hostess will focus on teaching the proclamation to teenagers as well as personal study tips for adults, Jaime from Welcome to the Madness will be focusing on applying the principles of the proclamation to our families, and Cocoa's focus will be on effect of the Proclamation to the world – tackling the major issues facing families today. They are going to have lots of giveaways and opportunities for you to link up to your own posts about the family. If you'd like to get a head start in preparing to participate in the celebration check out Cocoa's recommendations. It should be wonderful!


I thought I'd pass along this link that chibbylick linked to in my Barbie Dilemma post. It is a blog called "How to Play Barbies" and the whole premise of the blog is that children need to be taught how to play with their toys-- especially Barbies -- and that parents should be children's "Barbie-mentors". She gives ideas about how, by playing with your girls, you can use Barbie to teach them appropriate relationships between men and women, friendship skills, empathy, good body image, modesty, and cultural diversity. Here is what she says in one of her posts:

Leah could use her barbies to pretend to be anything she wanted from a pilot, to a princess, to the president. By extension, these toys would provide me with endless interactions for conveying my feminist views to her and for peering into her developing psyche.

This barbie doll world has become my platform. It’s my chance to lecture Leah, without ever giving a lecture.

When I tell my daughter I don’t wear high heels because they are uncomfortable, she’s not impressed. After all, I’m just a fat old lady. But when Bella or Grace says it, it really means something to her. When Trichelle tells Kayla she wants to be the star of her high school basketball team instead of a cheerleader, this too makes an impression.

I have Chandra telling Darren that she won’t marry until after she finishes college. Darren tells Chandra he could never love a girl that wasn’t independent, smart and genuine. Leah absorbs everything the dolls say with a twinkle in her eye. I know that Leah is impressionable enough to believe that the coolest two teenagers in the history of the world are letting her in on their secrets and I exploit that to the fullest.

So, in short, when the slutty clothes and ridiculous platinum blonde hair is gone, what a feminist mom and her impressionable daughter are left with is whatever they want to be left with. The world of barbies becomes a clean slate again. Empty of values until you introduce your own.

I know it shouldn't have been quite the revelation that it was, but her blog really reminded me about how important it is for ME to play with my kids. Play time is the time when children are often most receptive to social lessons and if I am the one playing with them I can guide how they play with their toys and teach important lessons. I'm still not 100% sure what we are going to do about Barbie in our house but I figure I still have some time to figure it out. It won't hurt the Barbies to let them just sit in the box-- it might just make them more valuable if I ever do decide to sell them!


I am trying not to be jealous, but all my friends who are having their third babies are in the process of buying bigger cars. Their blogs are full of pictures of their new SUV's and mini-vans and exclamations about how nice it is to have so much room. I've been trying not to turn green with envy because I know that there is
no way that we are going to be able to afford a bigger car before this baby is born. Instead I've been trying to figure out how I am going to cram three car seats into the back of our little Pontiac Sunfire. It isn't looking too good. In fact, several months ago when my husband was helping my sister-in-law look for a car they went and test drove a car just like ours. As they were getting into the car the owner apologized that the panel on the back passenger side door was missing. He explained that they had three little kids and that in order to get all the car seats in they had to take the paneling off the inside of the car, but he promised he'd put it back in if she wanted to buy it!

I haven't resorted to taking the paneling off the inside of the doors yet, but that might just be the next step. I can tell that having three children is definitely going to be an adventure!


Does anyone know anything about how to back-up your blog? At Christmas time last year my husband printed off my blog for me and bound it in a book but I'd like a way to make sure that my ACTUAL web pages are backed-up and saved somewhere. There is always a chance that Blogger's server could crash or something could happen to my blog. I'd hate to loose everything I've written the last three years. I am really a dunder-head when it comes to computer things and so I was just wondering if anyone knows how I'd go about backing my blog up-- whether or my own computer, on an external hard drive, or somewhere else.

Well, I guess that is it. I hope you have a wonderful weekend!


  1. Don't worry about the car thing. You'll be far happier avoiding debt than driving a shiny for the moment new car. Enjoy frugality!

  2. We just had baby #3, and we do have an SUV, but my Toyota Corolla gets 40 mpg, so I'm determined to keep driving it! We have big brother in his booster in the middle, big sister in her forward facing seat on one side, and baby sister in her baby seat (sans click-in base) on the other. It is a bit of a pain buckling the baby seat every time, but everyone fits snugly!

  3. We were the proud owners of a Buick skylark when I was pregnant with # 4. We had one car seat in the front and two in the back since 3 wouldn't fit. Then, since I was still the thinnest parent, even with my ever-expanding hips, I would sit in the back next to the car seat and lean over the car seats while my husband slammed the door shut. If I didn't lean, the door wouldn't close. After I mashed myself down between closed door and car seats, I could buckle up for safety! We got our first "big" car after #4 was a year old. Fortunately, booster seats are narrower than car seats.

  4. Thanks for spreading the word about the celebration! I can't wait to read everyone's posts either.

    I have no idea how to backup a blog. I should look into that too.

  5. When my #3 was born we had a pontiac bonneville, and out was a squeeze, but we fit three car seats in that back seat. I was adamant that the seats never be removed, unless it was because we had gotten a new car. (I played tetris with 3 car seats in the back of a sedan at 9 months pregnant, for about an hour, there was no way I was going to do that ever again, even after the belly was gone! ;)
    We do have a van now, and it is nice and roomy, but every month, when it's time to pay the car bill, I think about how we could've avoided debt and stayed in that fully paid for bonneville...
    A van seems nice, but no debt seems nicer.

  6. Another thing to consider is buying narrower car seats. It would still cost money to replace them, but not nearly as much as buying a new vehicle! When our kids both needed new car seats anyway I bought them both the Sunshine Radian XTSL (which I wanted anyway for many other reasons) but one of the key reasons I "needed" them is because they are the narrowest convertible car seats on the market. We should be able to barely squeeze 3 of these babies in the back seat of our tiny car when needed. (They are also the most expensive seats probably but we got them on sale - I've since seen them on sale for 'only' $150 each! Here's a great comparison spreadsheet which includes dimensions for different car seats, which might help if you go that route:

  7. I found a "skinnier" car seat from the Combi brand. It's also very light for a car seat. They are a bit pricey, $80 or so, but it's cheaper than buying a new car. The convertible ones come with an infant insert, so it can fit your newborn through 30 lbs, I think. It doesn't have a base to click in and out of, so if you like carrying around the car seat, that's a downside. I don't like lugging around the car seats myself. Good luck!

  8. So jealous of your canning. You are so lucky to have the gear for it, people to help you do it, and gardens to get the produce from. YUM

  9. I tackled trying to learn how to can this year -- did a ton of applesauce, apple pie filling, apple butter, pear sauce, apricots, etc. My neighbor just offered us 2 trees worth of peaches, so that will be my adventure this week I think. What I never thought about, until I saw your cucumbers, is trying to pickle some zucchini (we have WAY too much for even my family to eat) ... maybe I'll try that? There is something so satisfying in seeing those big jars of food to be put on the shelf ...

    About backing up your blog, just export your blog ...

    To backup your posts:

    Go to Settings ... Export Blog ... Download Blog ... Save (if that makes sense?)

  10. This might be weird, but if you are living in the SLC area check out RAND'S AUTO online. We found our van after we had our 2nd baby for a steal and it is a GOOD car. They are a little family-owned company that lives on word-of-mouth. They have great deals. Go check 'em out.