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Homeschooling In The Holler: Some Things We’ve Learned Recently

The largest denomination of United States currency ever printed is the $100,000 bill.

It takes a large Orb Weaver spider about 45 minutes to spin a web.

Orb Weaver Spider

Orb Weaver Spider

At almost 42 years old, Mommy (that’s me!) can still do the bear walk  -but not a head stand. (We won’t even go into cartwheels –tried that at 31 and threw my back out.)

Peppers get hotter when they’re roasted!

A fox’s bark sounds like a cross between a coyote and a wild turkey.

Chickens can lay different shaped eggs! We’ve found tiny ones the size of a pea and big ones the size of a turkey egg (that had to hurt), but this is a first:

Strange shaped chicken egg





Still Weed Eating

We don’t have a lot of yard here in the holler and what we do have is very rocky -so instead of mowing, we weed-eat.

It usually takes a good 10 hours to weed-eat our place and another 20 hours to do the roads.

Not this year!

I’ve been weed-eating every morning for a couple hours, until it gets too hot, but every afternoon it has rained or stormed and the weeds are growing almost as fast as I cut them down!

So…I’m still weed-eating, but I don’t mind; at least we’re not in a drought anymore, our spring and creek are running good, and the garden is doing great -thank the good Lord!

I’ll be back later with a recipe for some of your garden’s harvest, some pictures of wee wildlife in the holler and some freebie links.

Now I’m off to weed-eat some more…maybe, it’s looks like it might rain…again! :)




No Updates This Week

I have a ton of things on my to-do list that need to be done:

  • End of year school records to update
  • 3 days of weed-eating
  • Gardening –harvest taters and garlic, more planting, 2 more beds to finish and plant, clear brush and downed trees from new garden spot
  • Time to clean out the chicken coop
  • Go pick strawberries to freeze, make jam
  • Harvest and dry oregano and sage
  • Harvest comfrey and wild violet leaves –make salve
  • Association letters to write and mail
  • Sit down and fix a better schedule of things to-do!

I’ll be back this weekend with some more wit from the Ol’ Hermit, scripture with picture, wildflowers, freebies…and who knows what else!

Hope everyone has a lovely week. :)



Miss Chickee In The Lounge With The Candlestick

Chickee Clue 3

“Can I play?”

Ckickee Playing Clue

“There might be a clue here.”

Chickee Clue

“Is it my turn yet?”

Chickee Lounge Candlestick

“It wasn’t me! I was in the dining room!”

Chickee Clue 4



Related posts:

Everybody Likes To Read At Our House

Chicken Book (1)a

“What’s this?”

Chick Book aa

“It looks interesting.”

Chick Book bb

“Now we’re gettin’ to the good part.”

Chick Book cc

“Hurry up! Turn the page. “

Chick Book ddd

“Reading always makes me sleepy.”



Related Posts:

New Mama Hen, Rejected Chick, Chicken Whisperer, Pet Chicken

New Mama Hen

A couple weeks ago, when we went to put the metal on the roof of our add-on, we found one of our banty hens sitting on a nest.

Banty Hen Nesting (1)a

She had seven eggs under her – yay! We left her there, and on May 3, the eggs hatched.

Baby Chicks

Mama Bantam (2)a

Mama Bantam (6)a

On May 6, we moved our little hen and her chicks back to the chicken coop, and all were doing well -until two days ago.

Hen and Chicks (3)a


This past Monday, my children came running in the house with a baby chick -the poor little thing couldn’t hardly move! Thinking it had strayed too far from momma hen and just got cold, we put the chick in a box with a light.

After a while it perked up.

Chickee (1)a

That night I put the little chick back under it’s momma, hoping she would take it back.

It was not to be. When my children went to feed yesterday, they saw momma hen peckin’ and steppin’ on the little chick –she had rejected it. :(

Back in the box for the poor little chick.

After it perked up again, the little chick got to cheepin’ really loud –probably because he was all alone.

The Chicken Whisperer

The constant cheeping can be rather annoying and Daniel couldn’t stand it! He sat down beside the box and started cluckin’ to that little chick – and, wouldn’t ya know, that chick quieted right down!

Daniel would quit cluckin’ and the chick would start up again.

Chickee (2)a

It wasn’t long ‘til Daniel got tired of cluckin’!

The chick cheeped for a little while and when there was no answering cluck, he proceeded to hop up on the edge of the box and over to Daniel’s lap!

A Pet Chicken

Daniel couldn’t play with Legos with a chicken in his lap -so little chick went in his pocket.

Orphan Chickee (6)a

Orphan Chickee (9)a

It’s not picky, either –Abby will do as well as Daniel.

Orphan Chickee (5)a

I was worried about the chick cheeping all night long, so, after everyone went to bed, I held the little chick until it went to sleep and then I tucked it under the feather duster we have mounted in the corner of the box.

It worked! Not a peep ‘til this morning!

Chick under feather duster

So now we have a “pet” chicken…

What am I gonna do with a pet chicken?!

I guess we could ride around with it in the car, or take it shopping -like everyone else does with their itty bitty dogs. Heehee. :)


Related posts:






Bleaching Logs

The other I day I mentioned that I had been bleaching the logs in our add-on. Penny asked me why I was bleaching the logs.

Was anyone else wondering why?

I guess you wouldn’t know why logs are bleached, unless you’re involved in building log homes – so I’ll tell you all why it’s done.

When logs have set for any length of time, they start to discolor or “weather”. If they’re stacked or under plastic, they will mold. The logs will also get moldy after they’re put up, if the roof doesn’t get put on right away and it rains a lot.


So, the logs are bleached and the weathering and mold disappears. Sometimes they’re bleached several times, depending on how bad the discoloration is.


We had to do some dry scrubbing first.


The bleach is diluted half and half in a pressure sprayer (a spray bottle will work, also), and there’s a certain way to do it – you start at the bottom and work up. If you work from the top down, you’ll have drip marks.


It’s best to bleach the logs before the roof goes on, because of the fumes. One feller we know bleached a cabin after the roof was on – and ended up in the hospital with pneumonia! Even though our roof wasn’t on and the windows not in, I still put a fan out there while I was bleaching. (If you have to work inside; I would open every window and door in the house, set up some fans and work on small sections at a time.)


Our logs have been setting a while and I bleached them three times. There are a few dark places, still yet, but Lacy says the sander will take those out.




Looks a lot better, don’t ya think? :)

Note: Bleach can also be used on discolored and stained decks, driveways, outdoor furniture, siding, fences, etc.

Now you know what to do with discolored wood. :)



Photo credit: First five photos by Abby D.

I’m Back

Hi everybody, I’m back! Thanks for missin’ me. I hope everyone has been doing well. :)

I hadn’t meant to be offline so long, but…well here’s what happened:

The Injury

On Friday the 17th, my husband, Lacy, was operating the bobcat at work and dumped a load of rocks in his lap. Most of the rocks hit his knees and shins but nothing was broken. He is bruised up pretty good and could barely walk the first couple of days after it happened.

Thank the good Lord the rocks weren’t any bigger (grapefruit size) and he was the one operating -he’s a pretty stout feller and quick thinking. If this had happened to any one else, they might’ve been hurt a lot worse.  So…Lacy was out of commission for a while.

He’s better now, but his knees are still extremely sore and he’s trying to take it easy at work…which isn’t easy!

The Property Damage

First, for those of you that don’t know, a little background on where we live:

Our place is a mile from the road, inside of approximately 120 acres bordering the National Park. There are six houses up here, but we are the only people who live here -the other houses are nightly rentals. The roads in our small community are gravel roads and we, the property owners, keep them maintained. We also have a gate at the entrance which was recently upgraded to electric -it took us a long time to get it and it wasn’t cheap.

On Sunday the 19th, Lacy went out early for a newspaper. He got down the road and noticed one of the nightly rentals had eight vehicles parked at it, not a good sign. He drove on out and, surprise, surprise…our new electric gate was standing wide open! The gate opener was pulled apart and the brackets, which were welded on, were broken off the gate. :(

Apparently the renters lied to the rental agency, it was supposed to have been a family renting the house but they had a big party instead. At 10:30, the previous night, one of the other renters noticed nine cars at the house and one at the gate. When the rental agent arrived on Sunday, four vehicles were still at the house…and fourteen young men and women were still there. I won’t go into details.

We spent that Sunday making a police report and a lot of phone calls. Last week was spent fixing the gate (in between storms), changing codes and notifying property owners.

Again, we thank the Lord…nobody was hurt and nobody’s house was broken into.

(In case you’re wondering why we didn’t hear anything; we live too far back –we can’t even hear “road noise” unless the wind is just right.)

Everything Else

While all that was going on;

  • We had fruit trees to be plant before the storms moved in that Sunday
  • We had taters to plant before the moon changed last Friday
  • I spent two whole days bleaching the logs in our add-on
  • Our washer tore up
  • My internet speed slowed down to 25,000 bps

I was overwhelmed! When my internet connection slowed way down, I figured maybe God was trying to tell me something…everything happens for a reason. :)

Things have mostly settled down around here and everything is taken care of -except my washer. Hopefully, it will be fixed this week. :)

Now I might be able to catch up on all of my online stuff.

More updates later…



Working On Our House Update

We’ve been working around the rain this week.


Log construction

Windows are taking shape.

Log construction

Monday afternoon.

Log construction

Tuesday: Needed on the job a couple of hours in the morning.

Out of lag bolts, a trip to Maryville for me.



Sometimes you need a bigger hammer.

Big Hammer

Daddy’s helper, "That’s heavy!"

Log Construction

Almost ready to start on the roof, one log to go.

Log Construction

Wednesday Afternoon: Rain again.

Thursday: Rain, back to the job.

Friday: Last log up, rain.

Today: Rain, may as well go to the job and make some money.

That’s where we’re at, Monday we start on the ceiling  joists…if the good Lord’s willin’ and the creek don’t rise! :)


Related Posts:

Working on Our House This Week



Working on Our House This Week

Just wanted to let you all know that I won’t be online as much and my updates may be a little irregular this week because we are going to be working on our house!

My husband, Lacy, is a carpenter by trade and learned his craft from his daddy and other old-time carpenters.
He builds beautiful homes and log structures.
This is the one he’s working on now:

Custom log house construction

Our place is not so big and fancy.

Our cabin

We were already making payments on our property and didn’t want (and couldn’t afford) a bigger payment over a longer period of time, so we built a little one room cabin to start out and have added to it as time, money and weather permits.
They don’t permit very much, but this week they are! :)

Our Cabin from the back

We’re going from 625 square feet with 2 1/2 rooms (total!) to 1008 square feet with 7 rooms. We hope to get two rooms completely finished by next weekend, a small den on the back and big living room on the bottom, but we’ve also got trees to cut, so if we get that far we’ll be doing well.


I’ll post an update on our progress later this week.



Working On Our House Update

Have a wonderful day,