A Little Shopping…


It’s been a little warmer here on the farm, which has caused a very premature spring fever in everyone. The horses have been fussing like crazy, taking apart fencing, loafing in the sunshine, bullying each other (happens every spring, it seems) and getting all sorts of muddy and dirty. The dogs want to be out in the yard a lot more, especially Joe, which is fine when it’s warm enough, but since someone has to watch them at all times they haven’t gotten to go out quite as much as in the summer. The temperature itself hasn’t really even been too bad, but we have had a persistent icy northern wind for days, and it can physically hurt to be outside.

I did take my crochet out and sit in the sunshine while they roamed a couple days ago. I took some video so I could share it with my friends in Seattle, who were still fighting snow, so maybe I’ll cut that together and share with you all too!

I was on-call at work for a large part of the last two weeks, which means no leaving home or being away from the computer, so this last week has been a mad dash to catch up on all the errands that need running and chores that need doing. I had to go get more grain, run grocery shopping, pick up some cat food (which is a story I’ll share in a moment) and run to get my taxes done. All of which was in a different direction from one another so it took multiple trips. Crazy busy!

We also got to run some fun errands, I made everyone come to the used bookstore with me again and we all have some new evening reading materials. We have been trying to turn off the tv more often in the evenings, sometimes we talk, share news, and sometimes we read, enjoying each other’s company without needing to engage. It’s pretty common for us to do that in the summer on the porch, but in the winter we sometimes get a little attached to our shows. I, of course, got more mysteries, but also Pride and Prejudice, which has been on my TBR list for forever.

Christopher and I adventured a few towns over to check out a store called the Vintage Nerd too, a game store we had never been to. It was much bigger than we thought and we took about an hour and a half to walk through and browse, and I still feel like I probably didn’t see everything. I may have gotten some stickers, a game from my childhood, and some dice. I don’t talk about it a lot here, but when it’s cold and stormy, a favorite way to decompress after work for me is video games. I don’t play super often, at least not nearly as much as I did in school, but I do enjoy them. It should surprise no one that I love a good farming game.

I mentioned that I needed to tell you about the cat food. That was a bit of a misdirection because I don’t actually have much to say about the cat food (other than I tried to fetch it in a windstorm and I learned my local BiMart isn’t windproof). The currently ongoing story is that of a very large, very mean raccoon. He moved a few days ago and has totally trashed the tractor shed. He has terrorized the cats, broken some of the irrigation pipe that was stored in there, pulled wiring out of the hand tools and the lighting. He also got into some stuff a family member was storing in my shed and now I have to replace their stuff too. Luckily it was nothing major but still, I feel bad that their stuff got messed up. They were expecting me to keep it nice while they moved, ya know?

Then this little jerk decided to start camping out on my porch trying to work out how to get in the house. He’s super bold, and doesn’t seem to fear people at all. It’s worrying. He opened the tractor shed door himself, and for context, I can barely wrestle that thing open sometimes. He’s a chunky, clever little thief who is hellbent on food.
So, if anyone has any ideas how to handle that? I’m all ears.
Until we chat again my friends!

And on the 8th day, God looked down on his planned paradise and said, “I need a caretaker”

— so God made a Farmer.

God said, “I need somebody willing to get up before dawn, milk cows, work all day in the fields, milk cows again, eat supper, then go to town and stay past midnight at a meeting of the school board”

— so God made a Farmer.

“I need somebody with arms strong enough to rustle a calf and yet gentle enough to deliver his own grandchild; somebody to call hogs, tame cantankerous machinery, come home hungry, have to wait lunch until his wife’s done feeding visiting ladies, then tell the ladies to be sure and come back real soon — and mean it”

— so God made a Farmer.

God said, “I need somebody willing to sit up all night with a newborn colt, and watch it die, then dry his eyes and say, ‘Maybe next year.’ I need somebody who can shape an ax handle from a persimmon sprout, shoe a horse with a hunk of car tire, who can make harness out of haywire, feed sacks and shoe scraps; who, planting time and harvest season, will finish his forty-hour week by Tuesday noon, and then pain’n from tractor back, put in another seventy-two hours”

— so God made a Farmer.

God had to have somebody willing to ride the ruts at double speed to get the hay in ahead of the rain clouds, and yet stop in mid-field and race to help when he sees the first smoke from a neighbor’s place

— so God made a Farmer.

God said, “I need somebody strong enough to clear trees and heave bails, yet gentle enough to tame lambs and wean pigs and tend the pink-combed pullets, who will stop his mower for an hour to splint the broken leg of a meadow lark.”

It had to be somebody who’d plow deep and straight and not cut corners; somebody to seed, weed, feed, breed and rake and disc and plow and plant and tie the fleece and strain the milk and replenish the self-feeder and finish a hard week’s work with a five-mile drive to church; somebody who would bale a family together with the soft strong bonds of sharing, who would laugh, and then sigh, and then reply, with smiling eyes, when his son says that he wants to spend his life “doing what dad does”

— so God made a Farmer.

I was recently reminded of one of my favorite Paul Harvey speeches, and wanted to share….

While I Was Gone….

Hello Friends!

It’s been a minute! Oh goodness, has it been a while, but I am happy to be back.
I’m hoping you guys enjoyed the video…blog….vlog…thing that I posted. It was a lot of fun to make and I am excited to work on more kinds of media like that. I think it will keep the writing from getting stale and give you all a new look at the farm.

So, what did you miss in January? A couple big things, but mostly not much. It’s been a cold, quiet start to the year.

Mom spent the last few days of 2022 in the hospital unfortunately. Her asthma came back with a force and her oxygen levels got way too low for us to handle on our own. So that was a very stressful week, luckily I had taken some time off to recoup from the holidays so I didn’t need to worry too much about work. The nurses and therapists were absolutely amazing, and while some of that hospital stay lived up to the small town politics standard (there are always those who wish to build kingdoms instead of do their job) I will be eternally grateful for those lovely ladies and gentleman who took care of my mom (and dad, who stayed the whole time). We also have a new rescue plan in place now that puts a lot more of the responsibility on us, the caregivers, which makes much more sense post-strokes. Her asthma hadn’t really been a problem in so long, we never thought to take that step, but now we are more set up which is offering a nice peace of mind.

Joe has been the best nurse to Mom, he checks her breathing and won’t let her out of his sight

We’ve had some issues with wildlife knocking down the pasture fences, and Ro is on a mission to get up to the road now. I don’t know what I am going to do with that girl. The fencing has been in dire need of an update for a while but panels are so stinking expensive, I’ve kinda deprioritized it. I don’t think that’s going to be an option much longer. Poor Dad has been out several mornings while I am at work trying to wrangle the fencing back together. He and I are getting into the habit of just walking the fence line fairly often to make sure things aren’t completely broken.

Trying to look innocent while I reset a fence post they knocked down, also, can we talk about the dirt situation for a minute? How do they get that muddy?

Speaking of wildlife, a new creature has entered our section of the valley. There is apparently a moose afoot. For those, like me, who just loudly exclaimed, “a moose?!” Yep. Yep, they come around occasionally. I have not seen one, but I often hear the stories. I am aware of four moose…moosen….meese….since I’ve lived here, including the one wandering around now. Christopher and our neighbor have seen it toddling around. I am not sure what the plan is if that moose decides to take out some of my fencing, I don’t think even the panels would truly do much. If I see it though, you can bet your bottom dollar that I will try to get a picture. 

Our houseguests have found a more permanent place to stay. I am really quite excited for them, I think it makes a lot more sense for their family. The church is helping them out, they are staying in a church owned house, so their landlord is probably pretty reasonable (at least it’s probably pretty easy to get the tenant handbook….okay, well, I thought it was funny). They kiddos have their own rooms, they have a kitchen they can use whenever (they could here too, but it was a little awkward because the layout of our house kinda sets you up to be “on show” when in the kitchen, and I think it made him nervous to cook in front of us), and it’s in town, closer to schools and work. Their car broke down out here a couple times and it’s a lot harder to get a car home or to the shop when you live out in the boonies. I think overall it’s a way better set up for them. Admittedly, it’s brought the chaos and stress level way back down to normal for us too. I forgot how truly quiet and chill our household is normally.

Anyhoo, that’s basically been us. Just chilling out and getting back to normal after a crazy end to 2022. I don’t really make resolutions, but I have a few goals and dreams for 2023, so I am pretty stinking excited for this year.
Until we chat again, my friends!