Friday, October 30, 2009

Our Adoption Story

We have been so blessed through the adoption of our 2 month old son Kai, and wanted to share these pictures and video of his incredible birth family.  Kai's birth family is Marshallese, and we have had the amazing opportunity to learn from his family about the culture and traditions of people from the Marshall Islands through food, crafts, and song.  We have been privileged to spend the past week in Hawaii getting to know his birth parents and older brother, and are committed to fostering Kai's relationship with his "first" family once we return to Texas.  Below are a few pictures from our time together this week, here are a couple of links to videos we shot of the farewell celebration on YouTube: 


This is a photo of our two families that became one with the adoption of Kai.  Taken in Honolulu in our hotel room just after we arrived in Hawaii.

At the fishmarket in Chinatown in downtown Honolulu selecting fish for the traditional Marshallese meal and celebration of Kai's adoption.

At the celebration party with auties, uncles and cousins.

Gifts from the Marshall Islands

Thursday, October 29, 2009

We found our missing piece!!

We are absolutely thrilled to announce the adoption of our son, Kai Lane Mitschke, who was born on August 15, 2009 and adopted on October 23, 2009. He is the answer to all of our prayers and is absolutely beautiful in every way. We are stuck in Hawaii until all of the paperwork goes through the court system and we are allowed to return to Texas with our baby, so in the meantime we are soaking up the sun and getting to know our precious baby boy.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Farm Updates

For those of you reading our blog's description that this blog is supposed to be about "musings about daily life on a small family farm," I want you to know that I do realize that many of my posting are not at all about the farm.  But, in blogs as in life, we live what we know, and our lives have been focused on working with the refugees we talk about in recent months. 

So, to give an update on farm happenings:

The Sheep:  Petey and Richie were able to retire this summer after 8 years of doing their manly duties.  We took them to a wonderful Texas vineyard and Bed and Breakfast in Athens, TX, where they will spend their retirement grazing between grapevines.  Tara Winery and Vineyard is literally postcard-esque.  Check it out at  We purchased a new ram from our friends at Jager Acres in Savoy, TX.  He is a white 2 year old whose name is Shrek, and he is a sweetheart.

The Goats:  Nothing much new to report here.  We are still swimming in Weezy's goat milk, and we've continued to milk her twice a day since March.  We were going to dry her off in August to breed her again this fall, but decided not to because we are enjoying the milk so much.  Lenny and Carl are friendly as ever, though very mischevious.  They are constantly escaping from our latest fencing arrangements.

The Chickens:  Despite having increased the size of our flock over the spring and summer to about 30, we are still not gettting a whole lot of egg production.  We think it may be because we have 3 roosters, which is 2 too many, and they are wearing the "ladies" out.  We will address this problem shortly!  ;)  We have invested in our first piece of yard art--meet King Rooster, who guards the chickens from hawks, coyotes, and sometimes Bonnie.

The garden:  We have had TONS of rain lately, and are really happy that we tried a fall garden for the first time this year.  Everything has really taken off like crazy, and we're getting more production from most of the vegetables than we did in June.  This is a huge watermelon we picked yesterday.  It is called "moon & stars" and is an heirloom variety from Baker Creek.

Straight neck squash from the fall garden:

More to come later!

Monday, October 12, 2009

A trip to the State Fair

October in Texas means it's time for a visit to the world famous State Fair of Texas.  Footlong corny dogs, funnel cakes, candy apples, the Ferris Wheel, the sculpture carved from hundreds of pounds of butter...what's not to love?  While it's hard to choose a favorite part, I always look forward to the petting zoo most of all.  This, of course, irritates Aaron to no end.  He doesn't understand why I need to buy a $3.00 cup of feed to play with animals at the fair when we have our own "free" petting zoo at home.  Right...but what about the camel?  We don't have a camel, so it must be worth it.
Anyway, this year we took three of our favorite kids to the fair for the first time.  If you read our blog, you'll recognize them from other pics earlier this year.  We love them sooooo much.  So here are some pics filled with lots of "firsts":

On the way to the fair, stuck in traffic.  From left to right, Hay Blut Moo (3), Moo Blut Htoo (7), and Moo Kae Blut (8).  The anticipation is almost too much to handle!

Moo Kae Blut and Moo Blut Htoo coming down the slide of the Fun House.

Moo Moo (the kids' aunt and also a kid at heart) enjoys the Fun House slide.

Hay Blut Moo gets a ride on Aaron's shoulders.

One of the many highlights of the trip:  facepainting (also a first)!

The trip back home--could they be any more adorable?!!