We’ve been doing a lot of moving – canned goods from the basement to our storage room, books from the basement to our little boys’ room, and this blog over to You can now find me at

I’m sorry if this is an inconvenience for anyone. I hope you will join me at my new place as I continue to learn on my journey of keeping my family healthy and happy.

Library Time Week 2

Here’s what we’ve been reading this week. I hope you can find something that would interest you. Any books marked with a * can be found for free on Kindle. Happy Reading.

Me – Anna the Adventuress* by E. Philipps Openheim and Backpacked – A Reluctant Trip Across Central America by Catherine Ryan Howard

14-year-old daughter – Your Novel Day by Day – Her goal is to be a published author by the fall of 2014. She is currently at 12,000 words.

13-year-old son – Titanic Voyage – The name says it all. I can’t bring myself to read books about the “Titanic” because it’s just so sad.

11-year-old son – Fire Hunter by Jim Kjelgaard

9-year-old-daughter – Hidden Rainbow by Christmas Carol Kaufmann. I cannot recommend this book highly enough. It is about a Ukranian couple in the early 20th century shackled by their Catholicism and the despair it led them too and their eventual freedom in Christ. She also read “These Happy Golden Years” by Laura Ingalls Wilder (her favourite in the series).

7-year-old-daughter – She’s still in “Family Circus” mode, but she also read “Again” by John Prater.

5-year-old-son – Again he’s not a reader but does enjoy being read to. We read “Madeline and the Cats of Rome” by John Bemelmans Marciano (grandson of Ludwig Bemelmans the author of “Madeline”)

2-year-old-son – The Runaway Bunny by Margaret Wise Brown

I hope there has been something here that interested you. What did you read this week?

Weight Loss and Baby Beans


This has been our first week of summer break! Yeah! That has meant more sewing for me. We have also had some warmer and drier weather so the children have been enjoying playing outside. It has also been the week that I have finally lost more than half of what I’m hoping to lose – only 12 more pounds to go.

So let me say a few more words about the Trim Healthy Mama plan of eating. I have mentioned before that this is what I’m using for a diet. Let me just say that I’m absolutely blown away with how I have been able to lose this weight even though I would say that I have only followed the plan about 70-80% of the time. For instance, when my husband takes me out for our weekly date I don’t worry about dieting and even have dessert. However, this diet has taught me how to properly fuel my body so that I’m not giving my body extra fuel that it stores as fat but rather uses fat already stored to fuel my body hence causing weight loss. (That sentence was a bit too long. I hope it at least made sense.) If you are sitting on the fence as to whether or not to buy the book and use the Trim Healthy Mama plan for eating, go for it. Not only  have I lost weight I’ve also lost my headaches, depression and out-of-control sugar cravings. It has been wonderful and overall has been simple. I have not felt starved or deprived except for the few times I’ve eyed my children eating their fresh-out-of-the -oven bread, but then there has always been a chocolate shake, lemon curd tart, fudge or a strawberry whip to fall back on.

On the garden front our beans are up. This morning when I hung up our laundry there were a few poking up. Some were maybe and inch or inch and a half tall. When I went to get our laundry tonight we counted 26 baby bean plants! Several were 3-4 inches tall. It was exciting. The children had to come have a look. I think beans are one of the easiest and most fun plants for children to grow because they are easy and fast.


checking out the new babies in our family

baby beans - yeah

baby beans – yeah

We’ve been having fun travelling around the world. So far we’ve visited New Zealand, Australia, Papau New Guinea, Japan and China. I’m learning my geography better and so are my children. It’s been fun. Did you know that for every person in New Zealand there are seven sheep?

How was your week? If you have a garden, how is it doing?

Vitamin E


Vitamin E could be called the “Warrior Vitamin”! It protects our bodies in so many ways. It is an antioxidant that helps to protect us from toxins, pollution and premature aging. It also protects other nutrients from being damaged. Our immune system, nerves and muscles all need vitamin E to function properly. It helps to heal injured tissue and prevent scarring. It also has some anticoagulant properties to keep our blood from clotting. We store it in our liver, but if we have excess our body eliminates it through our urine. This is one powerful vitamin.

Since vitamin C and selenium are also antioxidants they are good to take with vitamin E to help fight toxins in our bodies. Vitamin E helps our bodies to absorb vitamin A, but iron absorption is hindered by vitamin E so take them at separate times.

So how can we get Vitamin A into our diet? According to here are the top ten sources: sunflower seeds, paprika and chili powder, almonds, pine nuts, peanuts, dried herbs (basil and oregano), dried apricots, pickled green olives, cooked spinach and cooked taro root. No doubt you already eat many of these foods. Obviously adding vitamin E to your diet is simply and delicious. I do wonder though if anyone has ever cooked and/or eaten taro root. What is it like?


The information about Vitamin E comes from the Encyclopedia of Natural Healing, Alive Publishing Group, 1997.

E. Phillips Oppenheim

Okay, so I know this is not really a homemaking topic or something about health, but it is something I want to share.

Long, long ago and in a place far away I was a teenager reading a book called “The Great Impersonation” by E. Phillips Oppenheim. It was great. Suspense, mystery and gentle romance all wrapped up in one book. I read and re-read the story several times over the next few years finally losing track of it.

When I got my Kindle I decided to look it up and see if I could get a free copy of it. Not only did I find “The Great Impersonation” I also found 53 other books by the same author. I started downloading books as fast as I could click. Since then I’ve read an average of one book a week. I have not been disappointed with Oppenheim’s books. They are all similar in that they are mystery AND romance and they all seem to take an unexpected turn somewhere.

I looked Oppenheim up on Not surprisingly he is British – so far all of the books I’ve read either start in England or end up there – born in 1866. He wrote over 100 novels and short story books. His writing enabled him to buy a yacht and a villa in France and later a house on Guersney which he lost during World Ward II due to German occupation. He was given the house back after the war and died there in 1946.

The Great Impersonation

If you have a Kindle check this author out or see if your library has any of his books. I have heard that you can get a Kindle app for your computer but have never looked into it. It might be worth checking into although a computer is not as easy to hold as a Kindle. 🙂

Do you have a favourite author or book?



Hi everyone!  My name is Eva-Joy (although most of the time I’m known as Eva to my blogging friends) and I’m the oldest of eight siblings.  I posted awhile back about how we preserve our strawberries and my mom said I could properly introduce myself today.

I love classic books, music, musicals (especially Les Miserables and A Tale Of Two Cities) and writing.  A few of my favorite books are Les Miserables (Victor Hugo), Emma (Jane Austen), Glimpses Of Truth (Jack Cavanaugh) and Bleak House (Charles Dickens).  But I really have so many favorites it’s hard to choose.

I’m currently writing a historical/romance novel set in a fictitious country.  I’m hoping to have it published by October 2014 which will mean a lot of work (since I’m only about 10,000 words into right now) but I have an outline, chapter list and a great support group so it’s totally possible.

I probably won’t be posting much on this blog since my own blog takes up a lot of my time.  I’ll still be on here from time to time, but for the most part, my mom will be be blogging here.


Library Time Week 1

I thought I would start a new series and share weekly (hopefully) what we’ve been reading in our family. It may give you some ideas for reading in your family. Any books marked with a * can be found for free on Kindle. Happy Reading.

Me – The Lost Wagon* – Jim Kjelgaard

14-year-old daughter – A Little Princess* – Frances Hodgson Burnett – a re-read which shows it’s a good one

13-year-old son – The Basil of Baker Street Series – Eve Titus – a bit below his level but a fun read

Product Details

11-year-old son – Canadian Attack and Support Planes and the Big Book of Riddles

9-year-old daughter – 5 Nancy Drews

7-year-old daughter – She’s been reading a lot of Peanuts and Family Circus books. It’s so fun when they can read what the picture is about and “get” the joke. She’s also been reading “The Boxcar Children” for school so I’ve been hearing it repeated to me almost verbatim. 🙂 Sound familiar, Mom?

5-year-old son – He cannot read for himself yet but still loves books. Here are a couple that were read to him this week…

          Mop Top by Don Freeman (author of “Corduroy”) and Rooster’s Off to See the World by Eric Carle

2-year-old son – Teddy Bear’s Fun to Learn. We discovered this book with our oldest daughter. We have worn out three copies and really need to order another one. This is Ethan’s all-time favourite which is saying a lot because he LOVES books. My husband has never read these books word-for-word to our children. Instead, he has made up his own story for each page and it becomes more detailed with every child. They all love to hear how Daddy is embellishing the book for the newest toddler, and we’ve had a lot of laughs at what he comes up with.

 So there you have a small sampling of what we’ve been enjoying reading this week. Have we interested you at all? What have you been reading?

It’s IN!


Yesterday I was all set to do a a post only I couldn’t get into my account. I was upset and tried everything I could think of. I went to bed with the post unwritten and the problem unsolved. A couple of hours after I got up this morning I was mentally giving myself a slap on the back of my head – I had been using the wrong username. Such is life. I’ll have to save that post for another time.

On a happier note we finally planted our garden this week. Since we were late buying our plants this year I had to make some changes but I don’t mind. I just am happy to have plants growing in my backyard. We also saved a little money since the plants were on sale. We ended up with eight tomato plants, 4 zucchinis, 1 honeydew melon, 1 pumpkin. We also planted a mint plant. I wanted to get some parsley but couldn’t find any. While we were looking we saw a stevia plant which we thought might be fun so we bought it. I know nothing about growing or harvesting stevia so I’m going to have to do some research. I’m excited to be trying something new. We also planted some beans and carrot from seed. I still have some marigold and sunflower seeds that I want to get in – hopefully tomorrow.

I had a whole bunch of pictures of us planting our garden, but one of our children mistakenly deleted all the pictures from my camera this morning. So you’ll have to be happy of one picture of everything tidy and in place. The plastic box is my compost box. So far no compost. I’m so anxious to make my own compost – gardening can be great for increasing patience. 🙂


How was your week? Do you have a garden?

Natural Body Products

Body BeautifulThis is going to be a short post. Maybe it’s just an excuse for me to see if anyone is really reading this blog. 😉

I wrote a post a while ago about using oil for a facial cleanser. I have been accumulating recipes for various body products – shampoo, conditioner, deodarant, hand lotion, lip balm/gloss, shaving lotion, skin salve, etc. I’m hoping to try a lot of these this summer and get back with you as to whether or not I like them. If I do like them I will definitely share how-to’s. Our skin is our body’s biggest organ. We sometimes forget that what we put ON our skin can affect us as much as what we put IN our body.

Here’s what I’m wondering – have I missed anything? Is there a body product that you’ve really been wanting a natural alternative for? If so, I’ll try to find one for you. Let me know in the comments.