Our Baby Is Here!

Once again I have taken a little break; but for good reason! Our baby boy arrived and I have been busy figuring out how to be a mom and balance our new life! We have always wanted children, but I never really knew how rewarding it would be to become a mother. When they say you don’t understand until your a mother; well, they are correct. I never knew I could love something so much. I also didn’t know I could love my husband more then I did. Seeing my husband with our son makes me so happy! They have quite the bond already. And he definitely is his father’s mini! Looks just like him. Time sure has flown by since we arrived! I feel like he just got here; but in reality he is almost two months old already! He is growing like a weed!

While I have been figuring out how to become a professional diaper changer, nursing, and all things baby; I have also been trying to make time for myself. One thing I don’t want to happen is to “lose” myself. I still want to keep up with the things I love to do. Thankfully I can do most of those things at home and still be with my son. Although I have a new role in life, I don’t want to put myself completely on the back burner.

So with that being said, I am super excited to pick back up on some projects that had to be set aside during my pregnancy. I had really gotten into making wooden signs last summer and I can’t wait to get back into it. I also had another big project that I had been brainstorming on for quite sometime! Like all the way back in college when I was taking my entrepreneurship classes for my agriculture degree. I think it is time to bring that one to life. My younger sister helped me start on it last fall. So I have a few things to keep me busy when I’m not snuggling my son! Which is currently what I’m doing as he is napping in my arms! 💙

-Maria

Summer Is Here! 

Morning friends!! 

I don’t know about you, but I feel like the month of May just flew by!! I can’t believe June is here! This week it has really warmed up! 

We have been busy making progress at the house. And by we, I mean Nate and my father-in-law! They have been super busy!! Almost finished with drywall on the second floor. Those men work wonders! Can’t wait to see it all done. Every time I go over there something changes! 

In the mean time, I have been busy getting ready for this baby to make his arrival. I finally got my hospital bag  completely packed. I figured at almost 39 weeks I should probably get that done! (I know, I’m horrible. I waited until the last minute. Don’t judge me!) Better late then never I always say! 

I have also been keeping myself preoccupied with the garden, our hens and pups! Yesterday I brough home more pepper plants. I might have a problem. They were huge plants and on sale! How could I pass them up?! Everything has come up and is looking quite nice. The heat this past week has really made the tomatoe plants take off and start producing blooms! Can’t wait for fresh veggies out of the garden. Even more so, not to have to buy them at the store! So expensive! 

The other night I made a cucumber salsa recipe I thought I would share. It was so easy! A “chop, dump and mix” kind of recipe!  

Cucumber Salsa: 

2 cups of chopped cucumber

1 cup chopped tomatoe 

One sweet onion chopped 

 Chopped fresh cilantro (I used about 4 tbs.) 

1 tbs. of garlic 

1/2 cup of sour cream (more or less depending on your taste) 

1 tbs. of lemon juice 

1 tbs. lime juice 

Salt and pepper to taste 

Cut everything up, dump into bowl and mix! I thought it needed a little extra something so I used my grandmas secret seasoning mix. But a general ranch seasoning mix would work great to replace that! A simple, quick and easy salsa for a hot summer day ☀️ 

-Maria 

Memorial Weekend Festivities 

Hope everyone had a fabulous long weekend! I know I did! As well as having a case of the Mondays as I started out my work morning. Even though it wasn’t really Monday; I’m sure you get my drift. 

When I think about the things that have been going on lately, I sure can count my blessings. We have been scrambling around doing last minute things to get ready for whatever day our bundle of joy decides to make his appearance. Working on the house to get it move in ready (hopefully soon!) My little sister moved three hours away from us (insert tears!) My mom is still going staying strong while continuing her chemo treatments. Hoping for more good reports from Mayo this summer!! She needs to be healthy for her first grandbaby! 

But through it all we remain strong, and there for each other. Life has been a little crazy with everything. So this past weekend, to be able to relax and spend time with each other; and do some things for ourself was just what we needed.  

Nate and I had our own adventure getting our appliances from Des Moines. Stopped at Slims Market on the way home for some awesome, fresh produce! If you have never been there make sure to check it out sometime: west of Story City, Ia. We even ditch hunted some asparagus. Saturday, Nate was supposed to have a day to himself to fish with his friend but instead accompanied me to JunqueFest to do some antiquing and have lunch together. We then topped off our day attending a wedding. And Sunday evening spent it with his family at the campgrounds! We all ate dinner, roasted marshmallows and made pies over the fire. Talk about relaxing! 

I hope your weekend was as relaxing and blessed as mine was. I hope everyone took the time to remember and reflect on why it is we have that three day weekend. Our freedom did not come free. I am so thankful for the brave men and women who served and are serving to help protect our nation 🇺🇸 

-Maria 

Mother’s Day!! 

Happy Mother's Day to all of you mamas!

As a mom-to-be, this day has been pretty nice to enjoy. However next year I can't wait to have my little man here to celebrate with 💙 It has been a very warm and sunny day here in central Iowa! The weather all around has been great all weekend! My mom requested Taco Tico for lunch today and will be grilling out for her Mother's Day dinner tonight! We bought her some pretty flowers to be hung outside, a bike flower planter, a little glow in the dark dragon fly to put on the flower bed, chocolate covered strawberries and a bracelet from baby Wyatt! Can't wait to give her all the goodies! 

Aside from Mother's Day festivities; it has been a busy weekend here at our farm. My husband and father in law textured the drywall Saturday in the kitchen, living room and mushroom. Yay!! Time to officially paint! That was a huge job done. Those two have been working non stop at the house. I just wish I could be of more help. Almost four weeks left before baby arrives; I'm getting slower by the day! 

In the spring I work for my dad running the seed tender during planting season. He just finished up last night! This spring has had its ups and downs with the weather. Beautiful warm days, then to cold and rainy days; then back to warm days. Made planting a little more difficult to get everything in the ground in a timely manner like he prefers. But it's all done now so that's all that matters! 

 I tend to carry my camera with me when I work; the photo shared is from Friday night. My sister is home from college and she to enjoys photography and anything farm related. So we took full advantage of the beautiful night to take photos of Dad planting! 

How is everyone else wrapping up this holiday weekend?! The garden also got fully planted (yay!) can't wait for fresh veggies to munch on this summer! 

Hope everyone had a good Mother's Day weekend!! 

Maria 

Pickin’ Paint Colors 

Happy Friday Friends! 

So much going on lately! Spring is here (yay!!), we are working on our house and officially in the last month and half of my pregnancy! So busy! 

Today my husband told me I need to pick out paint colors for the house. How exciting but so overwhelming! How does one decide?! So many choices. 

So to help me get a better idea, I naturally referenced Pinterest (like I do with almost anything these days). I came across a blog that claims to have the five top paint colors Joanna Gains uses on fixer upper. So they have to be good colors then if they use them on the show right?! Even better, they were all Sherwin Williams colors. Which is our local paint store in town. 

The colors were: Alabaster, Silver Strand, Oyster Bay, Repose Gray, and Mindful Gray. All very pretty! I picked up samples of all of them as well as some other recommendations from the gal who worked there. 

I ended up choosing another color she recommended for the kitchen, living room and mud room. It is called Light French Grey. It to was on quite a few pages I referenced on Pinterest; if your in search of a grey I would check it out! I chose that for my main color because it’s not over powering but because she said it is the “truest” grey color that looks best under all types of lighting. 

So to start this painting project we got our paints for the first three big rooms and will start this week!! Can’t wait!! 

Have yourself a wonderful weekend!! 

More Rhubarb Tastiness 

Happy Monday!! (If there is such thing 😉) 

I don’t know about you, but this past weekend just flew by!! Seems like once the weather gets nice outside, weekends and any free time for that matter, goes by way to quickly! 

Aside from the hustle and bustle of this past weekend, I managed to squeeze in a little recipe sampling! I have always seen things about rhubarb juice online. Has anyone else heard of such thing?! I hadn’t before, but I thought it sounded delicious! I pin pointed down a recipe that I wanted to try. I found it off of an Amish blog and it has a lot of good reviews so I knew it had to be a good one! 

It was extremely easy to make! I personally, am a huge fan of easy recipes! It turned out so well I wanted to share the recipe with you. 

Rhubarb Juice: 

4 pounds of fresh rhubarb, diced 

4 quarts of water 

1 (12 oz) can of frozen orange juice 

1 (46 oz.) can of pineapple juice 

2 cups of sugar 

1 (3 oz.) box of strawberry gelatin 
1. Cook the rhubarb and water until soft 

2. Drain off the juice from rhubarb; keeping the juice and discarding the rhubarb. Add the rest of the ingredients to the juice 

3. Stir until sugar is dissolved 

4. Put hot juice in jars, seal and cold pack for five minutes 

It’s that simple! I personally cut the sugar in half and used a sugar free gelatin and thought it turned out amazing. Everyone in my family thought it was a hit. It could also be used for a refreshing adult beverage paired with your favorite vodka or even a coconut rum! After my pregnancy, I will be having it pool side with some Malibu rum on a hot day 😉 

Cheers friends! 

Rhubarb Season 

Happy Tuesday! 

I hope this finds everyone doing well on this fine day! I don’t know about where you live, but here in Webster County the sun has finally made an appearance after about a week! It also got up to 63 degrees!! Finally! I sure did miss the sun and warm weather.

One of my favorite things about spring is planting flowers, spring planting on the farm, and hanging out with dad in the field! This year we have decided to have a garden at the new house. I got the potatoes and onions in the ground, but wanted to wait on everything else until the weather stayed warm. I plan on transplanting some rhubarb from my mom’s patch as well. I love me some fresh rhubarb! 

Right now the rhubarb is in its prime! One of my favorite things to make is my grandmas rhubarb  blueberry jam. I don’t meant to toot my horn; but my grandma Mary Lou has the best jam! It is so tasty! I enjoy it best on toast, ice cream, yogurt parfaits and even right off the spoon! 

What does everyone else like to use their rhubarb for?! I seen a post online about rhubarb juice. It looks amazing! I am going to give it a try this week. I will let ya know how it goes! 

Have a fabulous week!! 

Maria 

One Year Mark 

Top of the morning to you friends!! 

So this morning I was doing a little thinking, I realized that exactly one year ago we started this whole farmhouse renovation project. Where has the time gone?! Yikes! Now, when I say started, I mean we got the home in our names and started cutting down trees and gutting the inside of the house. It took until mid summer to get a construction crew there to do their part. BUT we had to gut the entire inside of the house. Cut the house into three sections. Burry one section, move the other two and get the basement dug and poured in the mean time. So we got a lot done before actual construction took place! 

Once the construction crew got there; they took until mid/end of fall before they left. Since then we have been doing the entire inside ourself. 

So much has changed in the last year; but there is light at the end of the tunnel!! Hopefully by mid June we will officially be able to move in!! We are so excited to have a house of our own again; but even more so, to start it as a family of three!! Something we didn’t realize would be happening when we started this project. 

I wanted to share a photo of what the original farm looked like back in the day. This was taken before I was born. But when I was younger, the barn, chicken coop and machine shed was still in tack! My dad had pigs in the barn until it blew over. That happened when I was about seven. I love seeing how it looked back then. My grandma has told me the story about how every time she watched a new piece of farm equipment pull out of the yard, she thought to herself “there goes my new house!” She always dreamed of building a new house in this property. I think she is pretty happy to have it stay in the family and see it happen ❤️ 

Spring is full of new things and new beginnings. We are so happy for our beginning chapter of life as a family and in a new home together. 

-Maria 

Sunny Days! 

Hi Friends! 

Today was the most gorgeous day here in central Iowa! Sunny, warm, almost no breeze kind of day. After days of cloudiness and dreary chilly weather, the sun was very much appreciated! It sure felt like spring! 

My husband is off on a fishing trip, so I am spending some much needed time with my family. My sister is back for the weekend. I am taking full advantage of my sister bonding time before she moves away on me! We spent the morning doing a little shopping, getting iced coffee (my caffeine treat for the weekend!)  hitting up a barn sale, and going out to our local hillbilly sale. Seen so many neat old antiques! Can’t wait to have my house done so I can decorate! 

Our mom used to take us out to the hillbilly sale every month with her best friend Kim and her son. At the time us kids weren’t that into the old junk. But as I got older I found it much more interesting. So I love to make it out there when the weather gets nice and look for treasures to add to my collection. 

After all our shopping, my dad helped me till up a spot at our new place for our garden. I’m hoping to get my potatoes and onions in tomorrow! 

Have a good Saturday!! 

Baby Shower! 

Hello Friends!

Hopefully everyone had a wonderful Easter this past weekend! I know I did! My sister threw me the most beautiful baby shower for baby Wyatt on Saturday. She rented out pretty barn and went with a farm theme. How fitting, my favorite! From using our childhood barn, farm animal cupcakes, our dads toy tractors…. the list goes on! She put so much thought and creativity into the day. I could not be more grateful for everything she did! I think she is one excited aunt!

Sunday we spent the day traveling around to Easters with our families. We had brunch in the morning, a noon meal at another, and dessert later in the afternoon at my grandmothers. Holidays get to be a lot sometime. Sometimes I wish we didn’t have any plans and could just stay home and relax. Then I am quickly reminded how lucky we are to have such a big loving family to spend our holidays with. Some aren’t so fortunate. I definitely count my blessings twice when it comes to our families ❤️

Have a fabulous week!!

Maria

I smell Spring! 

Hello friends! 

It was a beautiful day here in central Iowa! Started out a little gloomy, but after dinner the sun sure did shine! I don’t know about you, but spring is one of my favorite seasons. Green grass, sunny days, flower planting, gardening…. the list is endless! 

But my all time favorite reason is smelling the fresh dirt being worked in the fields and seeing farmers out planting in the fields! Being born and raised on a farm; nothing hits home for me quite like the sights of spring planting. 

As mentioned before, I am from central Iowa. Webster county to be exact. My parents are crop farmers; corn and soybeans. Growing up on the farm is something that I have always appreciated. My father took me everywhere when I was little. To the co-op, pig chores, the field, etc. He just took me with! Sure there were times when I didn’t enjoy what we were doing (More when I was a teenager). But looking back now, I have never appreciated the time spent with him more than I do now. Hand scraping the barn to repaint it. To walking beans on those hot summer days; all have become treasured memories that I will never take for granted even if they weren’t the funniest activities at the time. Some of the best father daughter bonding time  has taken place in the cab of a tractor or combine. 

My mom is what keeps things together. She is the most amazing farmers wife and mother on the planet! From running to get parts when needed, taking the guys here and picking them up there, cooking dinners for the field every night, keeping up with the house, the yard, and can even hop in the tractor when dad is short handed. She can do basically anything. But what I admire most about her is her strength. She has been through so much over the years with her illness. She always pushes through. She is the strongest person I know. I look up to her everyday. I hope to be a wife and mother just like her one day ❤️ 

So here is to a fabulous spring! Enjoy each day. Appreciate the little things. And never take a day for granted. 

Night! 

The low down on our farmhouse 

So I wanted to share some photos throughout this journey we have had renovating our farmhouse. What an adventure it has been! It has definitely tested us. Our patience, time, energy, you name it! A friend of our told us; if our marriage can survive building a house together, let alone taking on this massive of a project, we should be set! (That was a joke; but looking back I think he was half serious!) 

We actually cut the existing house into three pieces. Moved the garage off to another area of the farm, buried the smallsection and then moved the two story part off so we could dig a basement. After he basement was dug, we moved the two story back and rebuilt the garage and center part of the house. The old part of the house we kept got completely gutted. So essentially, the whole house will be new when it’s complete. 

Today my husband, father-in-law and my dad have the whole house insulated and putting up drywall! It’s really coming together. It also got new plumbing and heating. My handy man husband is an electrician, so he did that with the help of his dad and brother-in-law. 

My husband has been quite the saint putting up with me and all my ideas during this project. We both have always planned on buying our own acreage; but I don’t think such a big project was in the original plans! He knew how special having my grandparents farm would be to me, so for that I am forever grateful! This is after we cut the house into three sections. 


Garage is moved!


And so is the house! What’s left got buried. 



This was after the basement was dug and house out back onto the foundation. 


And what it looks like today! 😍

The original design we had going into it. I would say it turned out just as planed!