494: 10 Ways I Can Spot an Aspie Girl

Some of this is very applicable to my girl! 🙂

Everyday Asperger's

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10 Ways I Can Spot an Aspie Girl

1. Deep, soulful eyes which perhaps dip down slightly and/or are very distinguished and large. There is someone in there with a story. There is truth.

2. An uncomfortable smile that cannot find a home which fluctuates between a chiseled, serious frown and the most amazing genuine smile, wherein the whole self and soul lights up—a childlike expression, too pure to be mistaken for anything else than authenticity.

3. Continual statements of second-guessing, checking for understanding, clarifying self, and offering out extra information in an attempt to be understood. Indications of never reaching a full conclusion, as there are limitless possibilities. Questioning self, harvesting advice, and then tossing everything out and starting anew. Having the kindling of multiple thoughts about multiple directions, all at the same time.

4. Fleeting, unnatural eye contact, that is either over-intense and attempting to linger or constantly…

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To Bee or Not to Bee…

We attended an event on Saturday with our local beekeeping club, where a package of bees was installed into a hive, a hive was split, and we petted alpacas and admired livestock guardian dogs 🙂

We didn’t know they were going to auction off the package of bees, but they did – which meant we had to bid on them (our nucs won’t be ready until late April… and we are impatient.)  We won.

And suddenly, we were beekeepers!  It’s been very cold this week, so we haven’t seen a whole lot of activity (although our Rapid Feeder does allow us to see the bees as they are eating, so we knew they were eating a TON.)

This afternoon, things warmed up to the mid-60’s and we suddenly had hundreds of bees taking orientation flights.  VERY COOL!  Scott and I could sit and watch the bees all day – if we didn’t have anything else to do around here!  We’ve started a Facebook page, which you can find under “Honeybelle Hill Homestead“.

Meanwhile, we have some Basque Hen eggs that should hatch on Sunday.  They went into lockdown last night.

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This breed is totally new to us (and fairly new to the US, actually.)  A dual-purpose heritage breed imported from Spain, Basque Hens are also known as Euskal Oiloa.  We are still on a quest for the perfect dual-purpose chicken for homesteading.  I still have an interest in crossing Dorkings to create a meat bird, but Dorking hens are SO broody, they make things difficult 😉

Until next time!

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Newbees: The hives have arrived!

After much anticipation, our hives arrived yesterday!  We ordered them pre-assembled from Poor Valley Bee Farm.  They were packed well and we didn’t have anything arrive broken.15994391_10154796481171215_1558560549615660912_o

What we ordered (all 8 frame size):

(2) A-line Lids/Covers
(2) Inner Covers
(4) Medium Hive bodies
(4) Deep Hive bodies
(2) Screened Bottom Boards with entrance reducers
(2) Mouse Guards
(6) Beetle Blaster traps for small hive beetles
Frames
Plastic Foundation
Frame holder
(4) Plastic Drone Frames/Foundation
Honey-B Healthy

Our bees won’t arrive for three more months, so we have plenty of time to get these all painted and ready for their bee residents.  We will all add additional wax to the plastic foundation.

Scott is building individual hive stands, as well as a bigger rack to place both onto.

We have bee suits, gloves, tools, a smoker, and a couple of books that we’re still going over.  I ordered Rapid Feeders from the UK to use for feeding.  I need to purchase some pollen substitute, as well.

Last week we attended a meeting with our local beekeeping association and met several area beekeepers.  We know we have a lot to learn!

The past two days, we’ve had honey bees flying into the garage to gather saw dust!  It’s been fun to watch Isabel’s reactions.  She wants to name them 🙂

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Newbees… Our first year of beekeeping

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We’ve been busying getting things at the new house how we want them; planting apple trees, blueberries, blackberries and other edibles.  Our chicken coop is set up and currently houses two bantam Welsummer hens who haven’t given us an egg in about three months!  They will be replaced this spring and we’re researching breeds to use as dual purpose, possibly the Basque heritage breed.

I might have added some beekeeping equipment to my Christmas wish list this year…  And Scott might have bought some of it 🙂

So I am the proud new owner of a hive tool, smoker, brush, frame lifter, jacket and veil!  Scott also got me a copy of The Beekeeper’s Handbook.

We dutifully sat down and watched six You-tube videos of bee school in Maine.  I think the total time it took was around 12 hours, including pausing and cross referencing our book.  We learned a lot – although we are sure they do things differently down in the South.

Here are links for anyone interested in watching:

Bee School – Episode 1

Bee School – Episode 2

Bee School – Episode 3

Bee School – Episode 4

Bee School – Episode 5

Bee School – Episode 6

We learned about the different components of a hive, installing a package or nuc, winter feeding, varroa mites and other pests, treatments, honey supers, workers, queens, drones, drone foundation for varroa mite management, swarming, how to start a smoker… just a ton of really good information.

We then proceeded to watch A Year in the Life of an Apiary, which is a series that was produced in the 90’s by the University of Georgia.  Some of the information on treatments is now outdated, but a lot of the info was really good (as well as applicable to our climate.)

Today we learned about small hive beetles from the University of Florida.

There is SO much information available online about beekeeping!  But we know that nothing replaces local contacts and mentors, so we’ll be attending our local beekeeping association’s meeting this week.

After doing more research, we found a semi-local breeder of Russian bees and ordered two nucs, which will be ready in April.  We’ve also placed an order for our hives, which should be here in a week or two!  I’m debating what colors to paint them in the meantime…

Will Christy kill all the bees?  Will there be any honey to be had?  Only time will tell…

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She’s OFFICIAL!

After 13 months, this precious little girl is officially ours!  We are thrilled to bits to have her as our daughter.  She is such a blessing to our family!

Naomi was born at just 28 weeks gestation and weighed 2 lbs, 8.9 oz!  She came to our family at 7 weeks old, weighing 4 lbs, 6 oz.  She’s now 14 1/2 months old and growing like a weed!

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I am so blessed to be her mama!

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Family Ties

We had a wonderful time traveling to California and visiting old friends and family.  We got to see my grandpa and two of his sisters, along with cousins, my step-grandma, and some very dear friends who are just like family to me.  We also got to attend the fair that I used to go to every year as a child and teen and ran into people I went to school with.  We were able to meet up with two friends who are now fostering!  One is fostering a little girl and boy and should be adopting them soon and the other has fostered many children over the past year, but they have all moved on to other homes.  It’s exciting to see how God is using people to care for His children!  Here are some photos from our journey…

 

I love Georgia, but I sure hate being so far from loved ones 😦  This was a precious time and I loved hearing my grandpa introduce us to people by saying “This is my granddaughter and this is my granddaughter, and this is my granddaughter, and this is my grandddaughter, and this is Scott…” LOL  (For the record, he really likes Scott!)

I don’t know when I will return, but I will treasure these memories forever!

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We are all in!

 

We did it!  We bought a 2016 Ford Transit 350 Wagon!  It’s a FIFTEEN passenger (but we did pull out two seats so that we’d have room for cargo).  It drives very much like a minivan, but is a bit wider to turn into tight parking spots.  The rear camera is nice and we got the tow package so that we can pull our trailer.

Excited to see how God uses this!

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For I am in a strait betwixt two…

For those unfamiliar with the KJV, the above portion of a verse is found in Phillipians 1:23, where Paul says – 21For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain. 22But if I live in the flesh, this is the fruit of my labour: yet what I shall choose I wot not. 23For I am in a strait betwixt two, having a desire to depart, and to be with Christ; which is far better: 24Nevertheless to abide in the flesh is more needful for you. 25And having this confidence, I know that I shall abide and continue with you all for your furtherance and joy of faith; 26That your rejoicing may be more abundant in Jesus Christ for me by my coming to you again.

I like the KJV rendering because it gives me the visual image of being pulled in two directions – both towards good things.  The ESV says “I am hard pressed between the two.”

What do we do when our heart is being pulled in multiple directions – and all the directions are “good”?

On the one side, I am still very invested in fostering.  My heart is torn up for these children and families and God has not released me from the burden of the call to bring them into my home and family.  But as we near the finalization of our wee one’s adoption and I see our little home with our three girls – I am tempted to keep things “comfortable” for everyone involved.  I’m SOOOO tempted to step back from the call and not rock the boat any further.  Things are manageable right now.  We all fit in our minivan.  My mom is not horribly overwhelmed to take the three of them for short periods of time.  Traveling is a tiny bit of a challenge, but doable.

On the other hand, my heart is so knitted together with the people of Colombia!  Our pastor spoke last night on the importance of going to the ends of the earth with the Gospel and I could literally feel the pull on my heart.  We have been financially blessed so that we are able to support missionaries in Colombia, but this call is more personal than that.  I had recently tried to brush it off with “Well, maybe our job is to raise children who then go out to the mission field”… but why do I have such a love for these specific people?  Why do I long to be there myself?

Right now, there is no door open to Colombia.  Plain and simple.  Right now is not the right time.  We’ve told God that if He desires to open a door, we will walk through it.  But right now, there is no door within our view.

In addition, we are very burdened for a specific 17 year old young woman who will age out of foster care in the next several months.

We are currently planning to open our home to more foster children after our adoption is finalized.  Lord willing, we intend to purchase a 12 or 15 passenger Ford Transit van to accommodate the family.  I actually think this is what kind of scares me!  If we get a bigger van, I’m kind of obligated to put more little people into it!  And things are so easy right now with our three… *sigh*

Please pray for me, that I will always put His call and His will above my own comfort and convenience – as well as above what other people will think of us.  And also that if His intention is to add more children to our family, He will raise up a network of support for us.  And finally, that He will make clear what direction He desires for us to walk in.

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