Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category


Usually in Minnesota we still have snow right now so I am savoring every 50+ degree day that we have had the last few weeks.  Everyday we are outside.  We don’t even care if it is raining.  We just want to be outside either running around, playing with the chickens or doing yard work.  It just feels so good to be outside.

Yesterday while shopping we encountered a teenager who was totally red from the sun.  I felt so bad for her.  Us Minnesotans are not use to using sunscreen this early in the year so I guess that I couldn’t blame her for not thinking of bringing sunscreen to her track meet earlier in the day.  She did tell me that she learned her lesson and was telling others to start wearing sunblock and to protect their skin.  She is a wise teenager.

I haven’t yet found or created a sunscreen recipe that I feel works great, but I do have a summer face wash recipe that includes Carrot Seed oil which is by nature, a sun barer.  I like things to be easy so adding oils that help my skin into my face soap just makes sense to me.  Here is the recipe so that you can try it at home too.


1 Foaming Pump bottle (you can reuse the one that you were just about to throw out because it ran out of soap)

2 TBSP of Dr. Bronner’s Mild Castile Liquid Soap (an additional TBSP can be added if you like a thicker foam, but it is not necessary to cleanse your face)

3 Drops of Youngliving Carrot Seed Oil

5 Drops of Youngliving Melacueca Oil

3 Drops of Youngliving Frankincense Oil

2 Drops of Youngliving Lavender Oil


April 25, 2016

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April 25, 2016-4


And there you have it.  This recipe is easier and faster than running to the store to buy a container of face soap.  The whole recipe comes together in less than 3 minutes.  You gotta love that!


I took time to read everything that I could about chicks and chickens so that I could be a well educated Mama to our lil’ chicks.  I quietly wished for a “What to Expect When You’re Expecting Chickens” book, but sadly no one has written that book yet.  (I will have to talk to N about that.  That boy writes better than me.  He has already asked me if he can write some of the blog posts down the road because he loves to write.)

I felt confident in knowing what breeds of chickens would work best in our climate and for our family, I read about health concerns, how to clean coops, best type of feed to purchase during the different stages of life; but the moment that I saw our little chickens all of my knowledge flew out of my head.  They were sooooo tiny and looked incredibly fragile.  I felt the urge to keep the little chicks away from my 4 kids so that they wouldn’t get hurt, but on the same side I wanted teach my children about raising chickens.  Such conflicting thoughts were running through my mind.    I was a nervous wreck holding them in my clear Rubbermaid container on the way home.  I knew that they were nervous about what was going on, where they were going and probably wondering who this giant lady was that kept talking to them.  It must have been really scary for them.

Luckily, our chickens didn’t have a thing to worry about.  They are loved 6x over by each and everyone one of us.

Our chickens came into our lives in the middle of March 2015.  The Buff Orpington’s and Australorp’s were hatched on March 11th and the Barred Plymouth Rock’s were hatched on March 16th.

Here are some pictures of our lil’ chicks when they were just a few days old.  The Buff Oprpinton’s are the yellow ones, The Australorp’s are black with white tummies and the Barred Plymouth Rocks are black with the white dot on their heads.

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Never in my wildest dreams did I think that Jon would let me slowly change our perfectly manicured yard into an suburban farm.  I remember him becoming saddened when I let someone drive a car on the grass to deliver firewood back in the day.  Now he is letting our chickens roam around the yard fertilizing it.  It is pretty cool watching him adapt to our families’ needs and interests.  He has become a supporter and encourager through this transformation.

I looked for over an hour on my computer for a picture of our old pool.  I know that I have them, but I cannot find one.  Sounds crazy right, but I have probably close to 100,000 pictures saved on my server because my night job is a photographer (my day job is Mom).  Someday I will run across a photo and share it with all of you.  Until then, here are some real pictures of my yard.  You will notice that I really need to weed the garden.

August 04, 2015

August 04, 2015-2

 Here is a closer look at the coop that Jon and his good friend Aaron built for our hens.

 August 04, 2015-3


We are a family of 6 that lives in a suburb of Minneapolis on an acre lot.  Jon and I purchased our home in 2001 and are slowly modifying our land to fit our needs.  In 2013 we removed our large above ground pool to plant our second garden.  We have 4 beautiful kids that range in age from 5 to 12 years old.  They are active, playful and almost always on the move.

In 2015 we decided to make the leap and add 6 chickens to our family.  In addition to our 6 chickens we also have a cat that thinks she is a dog.

Our lives are a little crazy, creative and always funny.  I hope that you enjoy our adventures.


Photos by KME Photography

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Years ago I realized that I had failed to teach my children what carrots actually looked like.  They could tell you were to get baby carrots at the grocery store and would gobble an entire bag of them in one sitting, but they didn’t know that carrots grew with green tops out of nutrient rich soil.

Farmer N

One day N told me that he wanted to be a farmer for Halloween.   I was so excited to buy him overalls and a handkerchief for the outfit. Then he decided that he wanted to pass out fresh vegetables to houses instead of getting candy. I personally loved the idea so I set out to find farm fresh carrots in our town. I checked the usual locations, the 2 grocery stores, Walmart and Target. None and I repeat, NONE of them had any carrots with green tops. Right there and then I decided that we would grow carrots in a garden the following summer. We did just that.

The next summer we planted a small garden in the back of our yard on top of the hill. It was the perfect size for us to learn on. We were able to plant a few rows of carrots, some green beans and 2 rows of corn.

The kids and I were excited everyday to weed the garden and to see what plants had grown over night. The food didn’t’ last long that year. Most of our garden was consumed for “snacks” that summer. The kids loved being able to walk into the garden, pick a vegetable and to eat it a few minutes later.

The best part about creating a garden for our family is that it gave us another activity to do together and it helped us discover how much better fresh heirloom vegetables taste compared to the items we were buying at the store.


This is the first post on Coopin It Real. Dedicated to my lovely and talented wife, Katie!

Tour de cure 2015