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Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Lo Hicimos!

YAY! NaBloPoMo 2011! We did it! I DID IT! Ha Ha!!!

If you have children who watch Dora the Explorer, you will recognize the above title as a phrase she sings at the end of each show. After they have completed their mission the characters all dance around and sing "We did it! We did it! Lo hicimos!"

This time it went by faster and easier than last year. Maybe I am just getting better at it.

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In dairy news.

On Monday, as I blogged, we got rid of one bull. Now we need to get rid of the other AND find 2 new young bulls. Hubby called one Holstein bull breeder, but he didn't have any at the moment.

Hmmmmm....

Tomorrow we are going to take about 7 of our "extra" young, open heifers down to the Norwood Special Cow Auction. I think this is located somewhere past Mansfield. Hubby will drive the truck and trailer. Ellen and I will ride in the "chase car" in case hubby has a breakdown. We always carry our walkie talkies with us.

Yesterday Ellen and I made some sugar cookies. This is the first time in my adult life I can remember making sugar cookies. They turned out pretty well. Today we decorated them.

Today I also made the layers for a checkerboard cake. I am going to put it together on Saturday morning, I think, for our church dinner on Sunday afternoon.

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Well, I shall try to keep blogging regularly. We shall see.

Thanks for stopping by and reading!

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Cleaning Out My Recipes...etc

First: Dairy news. Today hubby is busy transporting critters from Long Lane over here to their winter quarters. This means that I will have to get up earlier in the AM to have time to feed them; TWO trips up the road on the four-wheeler in sub-freezing temperatures. Fun stuff.
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My Recipe Box For some strange reason it came to my attention that perhaps maybe I ought to go through my little recipe box. It’s not like I can’t find the recipe I need in here, because I know the general area where I keep the recipes I use the most. Some of them WERE repeats because I’d lost the original recipe in here and then looked on the internet for another copy of it; I didn’t include the repeats in my list. Some of these are recipes I have never tried before, though I have had them for years and years. Some of them are recipes I have tried once and will likely never try again. Some of them really sounded good at the time I read them, and some of them sounded do-able and maybe like I OUGHT to try them at some future point in time, but I never have.

Ellen helped me by taking a recipe out of the box and handing it to me; I’d write it down and then hand back to her to put into the pile.

Here we go:

1. Zucchini Pie
2. Checkerboard Cake
3. Pineapple Upside Down Cake
4. Rosemary Roasted Chicken w/ Potatoes
5. Award-winning Soft Chocolate Chip Cookies
6. Reuben Roll-ups
7. Zucchini Carrot Cake
8. Chocolate Candy Bar Cake
9. 30 Minute Rolls
10. Chocolate Pumpkin Yummy
11. Colorful Chicken Casserole
12. Dolly Parton’s Dixie Stampede Garlic Cheese Biscuits
13. Dixie Stampede Cream of Vegetable Soup-Authentic
14. Sweet Potato Sausage Casserole
15. Moist Banana Bread
16. Parmesan-Pork Zucchini Boats
17. Italian Cream Cake
18. Butter Corn Sticks
19. Chocolate Peanut Butter Grahams
20. Best Zucchini Bars
21. Asian Sesame Salmon
22. Chicken Tikka Masala
23. Ham and Cheese Pizzas
24. Peanut Chicken Stir-fry
25. Chocolaty Rocky Road Brownies
26. Chocolate Oatmeal Cake
27. Oatmeal Cake
28. Chocolate Macaroons
29. Maple Pecan Pie
30. Butterscotch Brownies
31. Moroccan Chicken Stew
32. Mock Chicken Salad Sandwich Spread
33. Smashed Chickpea Salad
34. Balsamic Chicken
35. Raspberry Coconut Bars
36. Marinated Venison Steaks
37. Irish Soda Bread
38. Apple Cake
39. Milk Chocolate Frosting #1
40. Milk Chocolate Frosting #2
41. Sweet and Sour Sauce #1
42. Sweet and Sour Sauce #2
43. African Sweet Potato Stew w/ Red Beans
44. Peanut Chicken Stir Fry
45. Zucchini Brownies
46. Wax Bean Soup #1
47. Walnut Blitz Torte
48. Coconut Cream Meringue
49. Fudge Ribbon Cake
50. Peanut Butter and Jelly Cake
51. Roasted Veggies
52. Italian Sausage Calzone
53. Peppermint and Chocolate Bars
54. Chocolate Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Filling
55. Teriyaki Glazed Chicken
56. Chicken-Artichoke Pizza
57. Maple Sweet Potatoes, Chicken and Mixed Veggies
58. Cheese
59. Chocolate Surprise Cookies
60. Peach Sauce
61. Layered Salad with Walnuts
62. Easy Boston Cream Cake
63. Beef Vegetable Soup
64. Peppermint Meltaways
65. Oven-fried Drumsticks
66. Sweet Potato-Pecan Upside down Cake
67. Texas Potato Wedges
68. Eileen’s Spicy Gingerbread Men
69. Sweet Potato Pineapple Bake
70. Chicken Pizza
71. Basic Buttermilk Cake
72. PB&J Cupcakes
73. Cake-to-go with Caramel Glaze
74. Beans and Franks Bake
75. Lemon Divine
76. Zucchini Casserole #1
77. One-rise Cinnamon Rolls
78. Rhubarb, Berry Cheesecake Pie
79. Maple-Glazed Carrots
80. Chocolate Chip Pancakes
81. Black Forest Cheesecake
82. Sweet Potato Quick bread
83. Sausage n’ Sauerkraut
84. Effortless Egg Rolls
85. Lemon Fudge
86. Baked Cherry Pudding
87. Rollout Cookies
88. Butter-Pecan Rum Cake
89. Hamburger Subs
90. Berry Cobbler
91. Easy Orange-Chocolate Fudge
92. German Chocolate Cake
93. Stuffed Sourdough Sandwiches
94. Salmon Burgers
95. Fresh Blueberry Pie
96. Sausage Spinach Bake
97. Pea Salad
98. Polka-Dot Macaroons
99. Sour Cream Salmon Loa
100. Pumpkin Chip Drops
101. Pumpkin Pie
102. Perfect Pumpkin Pie
103. Zucchini Casserole #2
104. Cucumber Pickles
105. Pasta Salads x4
106. Baked Beans
107. Wax Bean Soup #2
108. Freezer Dills
109. Ricotta Cheese…homemade
110. Sourdough Starter
111. Extra Chewy Granola Bars
112. Powdered Laundry Detergent
113. Japanese Fruit Pie
114. Zucchini Bread with Streusel Topping
115. Crispy Pickles
116. Homemade Liquid Laundry Detergent
117. White Bread
118. Wilted lettuce Dressing
119. Pork Steak with Potatoes
120. Holstein Crinkles
121. Magic Shell Ice Cream Topping
122. Caramel-Apple Pie
123. Chocolate Chunk Cookies
124. Awesome Pepperoni Pizza
125. Beef and Broccoli Stir-fry
126. Pickled Beets –Elna’s recipe
127. Sweet Cinnamon Biscuits
128. Garlic Dill Pickles
129. Pickled Beets –Amish Recipe
130. Apple-Brandy Carrot Cake
131. Sweet Potato Pie Cookies
132. Homemade Vanilla Ice Cream


As I glance through them I see definite trends; desserts, pizzas, and sweet potato recipes. They say that the average housewife has maybe 10 or so meals that she fixes and just rotates around. I guess I am a bit above average, but I do tend to stick with themes.

Most of the dishes I prepare frequently you will not find on this list simply because either I don’t follow a recipe to fix them, or because they are in one of my many cookbooks. Fried chicken; now who needs a recipe to cook fried chicken; or the mashed taters and Cole slaw that go along with them? I USED to, but not any more.

Monday, November 28, 2011

Gotcha!

.

In the roughly local area, there are three sale barns; one in Urbana on Mondays, one in Lebanon on Thursdays and one in Buffalo on Saturdays.

So, we had kind of a Russian Roulette for Mr Bull, to see if he'd actually come into the corral with the milking herd on one of those particular days of the week, AND if hubby had the time on THAT particular sale barn day to take him.

Today was IT! He came into corral by accident...too long of a story to relate. However, even in the trailer he was posturing and trying to act tough.

So we went to Urbana today.

We can tell Ellen is a true country girl. She wanted to go in and watch the sale in progress. She sat there and observed intently; and then waved her little arms around like she was buying or selling. Fortunately they were patient with little ones, so they didn't make us buy any of the beef stuff she must have bid on. ha ha.

Someday I'd really like to be there when they bring in one of our bulls to sell. But they only sell the dairy stuff last (after all the beef stuff) and they save the dairy bulls for the last of the last, I believe. We couldn't stay that late. But they did auction off this fairly large Brahma bull. He made up for it. He sure put the attendants into their little protected corners in a hurry. He had horns and was shaking his head at them.

They did auction off a couple culled dairy stuff. On the way home we were pondering; going to the sale barn really makes us appreciate how nice-looking our animals are; sleek, fat and sassy.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Aroma Therapy?

OK. So it has been a long month. But when I saw this I thought it was hilarious. (I think Donna posted it on Facebook. Thank you Donna.)

They say that your sense of humor can be very revealing about your personality.

Heh.

I wonder what this reveals about me?

No, don't say anything.


Saturday, November 26, 2011

A Blustery Day

It has been a blustery day here in Missouri. Wet, too. I am just praying that it doesn't snow before it's over. The temps are supposed to drop for the next few days.

Ellen is snoozing away. I need to wake her up, she won't sleep tonight already.

Today I will just leave you some good words of wisdom:

"These things I have spoken to you that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world." John 16:33

No matter what may be happening in your life at the moment; HE has overcome it. Trust in Him.

Friday, November 25, 2011

Day 25

Here I am on Day 25 of NaBloPoMo. I think, as long as my internet connection holds out, that I will make it yet again this year.

They ought to rename Black Friday. Wasn't it last year or the year before that shoppers trampled the employee who unlocked the doors at a Wal-Mart? Now this year some woman goes in pepper-spraying folks. I hope they catch her.

They ought to call this day something along the lines of Let's See Who We Can Kill or Maim Just So We Can Buy More China Junk Day.

Is "stuff" really that important to us as a society? I guess it is. That's why these storage rental places keep popping up all over. I remember one of my co-workers in Portland saying that she had a storage rental place full of stuff. And a house full of stuff too.

And I am not immune. Here we just got our second storage shed. I am all for donating or yardsale-ing all the stuff we don't use any more. But not the hubby. He is all for keeping it in case of emergencies; like if we were to have a fire or something. There is a certain logic in that. But if, Heaven Forbid, that were to happen all of our friends, family and neighbors would pitch and help us out.

Probably from the stuff they have in THEIR storage sheds....

Well, OK. We will keep SOME stuff in storage. In case of an emergency; ours or our neighbor's.

*sigh*

LOL

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Thankful

On this Thanksgiving day, the disappearing holiday, I am thankful for all the good things in life; family, food, health, salvation; not necessarily in that order. If you do not know one or any of these things then you are in my prayers.

H3 had a nice big bull calf this morning to show me. He was up and doing well. I am glad she didn't have twins. This one we can sell for a fair price, I believe.

Ellen is happily playing, hubby is taking a well-deserved rest while I am blogging.

I hope everyone has had a nice Turkey Day.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Pointless Pursuits

Today Ellen was watching a Charlie Brown show trailer, sneak peek, whatever you want to call it. I remember how as a kid I would get so mad at the snotty "little red-haired girl" that Charlie Brown would vainly pursue. Why couldn't she at least give him the time of day, send him a Christmas card, or whatever?

Then I would get so annoyed with Peppermint Patty and HER relentless pursuit of Charlie Brown.

According to Wikipedia the little Red-haired girl was based on a real character in Schulz's life, someone named Donna. Read about it here.

But I was thinking today that this teaches us, as Charles Schulz no doubt intended, two separate lessons.

First. The LRHG remains, in the comic strip, unseen and unnamed, and she causes Charlie Brown many sad moments...in which he pines for what is unattainable, ephemeral. But here following behind him in an equally vain pursuit, is Peppermint Patty. She is unabashed in her devotion to Charlie Brown.

How often do we vainly set our sights on something we believe to be IT? How many tears do we cry over what we can't attain? How much heartache do we force ourselves to endure over what wasn't meant to be?

And yet, right behind us, chasing us down, is what we are really looking for. True love.

Second. In Peppermint Patty's case. Here she is chasing something someone who KNOWS how she feels, who rejects her again and again, and yet she continues wasting time on him. C'mon girlfriend. Get a life! Leave him be. If he won't get a clue, if he keeps slapping you down, wipe the dust off your feet and find someone who appreciates you.

It's equally as vain to keep bloodying your head on a brick wall.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Short and Sweet

There is something sexy about a man wearing shades and operating a chainsaw.

Monday, November 21, 2011

A List of Random Thoughts on Bulls

1) The bull with the dairy herd is starting to get worse as far as temperament is concerned. Nasty, in fact. He won't herd at all. Like, if hubby wants him to get out of the way or to go with the cows, Mr Bull will just stand there, paw, huff and kink his neck. It's super scary. Twice a day I always am on pins and needles when hubby does the round up. He, hubby, is hoping Bull will follow a cow in heat into the corral, then it will be a trip to the sale barn.

2) The bull up the road that I have to feed every morning isn't quite as aggressive yet. I am always super cautious when he comes into the corral while I am dumping their grain, but he always goes to the other side of the feedbunk and starts eating. I skedaddle as soon as I can.

3) I like watching him-the bull up the road-when he is walking to the corral. There is a certain fascination in watching a dangerous animal; the muscles sliding under his skin as he walks, his big head swaying back and forth. He's huge; close to a ton, all muscle and bone and blood. His neck is like a tree trunk. And he just ambles along, but I know when he's fightin' red-hot mad, blood-in-his-eye mad; he can get the lead out and lay tracks.

4) One time we clocked a bull on the other side of the fence chasing the trailer as we drove up the road. (He hated the sound of the trailer and would chase it-most bulls do and would) He ran 20+ MPH for a couple hundred yards I believe.

5) "They" (they being the professionals)say that dairy bulls are so mean because of the way they are raised; kept by themselves and all. Heh. I dunno about that.

Just a month ago we had a little bull calf who tried to take my knees out. He was only maybe 36 hrs old and we had him in a corral. I went in to give him a bottle for the first time; the little buggar lowered his head, let out a MMMMMAAAAAAHHHHH and went for my knees. Do you know how hard it is to fend off a 90lb or so calf while trying to hold a bottle and get said bottle into its mouth?

You ought to try it sometime. Fun stuff.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Winter's coming...

Flocks of geese are honking their way south. If you live down south you will soon be seeing them; hanging out in the golf courses and ball parks.

So far we have missed out on super cold weather and snow. It has been down in the 20s one night, but that's it so far. We haven't had to worry about getting in too much wood so far. But it's coming.

I don't look forward to winter, but I AM glad the bugs are gone for awhile. This past summer I have had 2 grasshoppers up my pants leg, a spider down my shirt and a walking stick on the back of my head. ICK!

I can do without bugs.

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Ellen wanted to do some blogging too. Here's her contribution:

rjfigjgfngufngvhgyrftghgrfygrfhhgvhgrhghjhjyhjvhjjh1fgflgkfdglf;ghlfhflg.df,gvd,g;cgvpcclflvdg,lglvclgvkgfgjigkkglglg;;g;gfgckg,gjggbfgbvhbhbncv;c'gvcv2folopfld.l;gkdmfjdkgfgfvfdohvjnyinhcjngbvkyhbjjuhjhjgkuhj,jhky6gvknhoiuyrfkhmvkhgfjfbjgutvyhthgkhjbggfnhbgjjbvnhbjgjnbjujbjbjhjghnuh ,tgrfjvgtrjmgddkrfglbgvfgklcgrflfdkvglgfb;f;hbclfb;b;gfg;vgfglhhhh/hh;kfvmkdjkvmdfjvcmkvjkkmoo

Ellen says she's forgotten what she blogged about but that it's not very good at all.

But please notice she attempted to stick with the dairy theme; check out her last word. haha...

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Leaves...

Where I grew up in the Pacific North West, mostly all we had were Douglas Fir trees and Alder. And some spruce and hemlock, I guess. Only the alder would shed leaves, only the alder even HAD leaves, aside from the fruit trees. But somehow one doesn't get many leaves from apples trees...even if there are some 30 of them scattered around the place.

At any rate it wasn't until I was in my teens that I ever heard of anyone burning leaves and I was completely bewildered as to why anyone would want to or need to do such a thing.

Here in Missouri I now comprehend all too well. This picture is a case in point.

Ellen loves to play in them after I get them all piled up like this. It was much too windy to do any burning today. But I don't really like burning them anyway. It makes a nasty dead spot on the lawn for a long time. We have started just mowing them. It seems to work just as well.

Friday, November 18, 2011

At the Dixie Stampede


Here is a less-than-stellar photo of Ellen at the Dixie Stampede last weekend. The lighting was really poor, but I got this shot of her with "Sam" the horse in the background. Before the shows they have all of the horses stabled outside where you can walk around and read a little blurb about them right under their names, which are posted in the back of the stall; you can see it just over "Sam's" back.

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I know this blog's title would lead you to believe that I blog about our dairy; but lately I seem to have been blogging mostly about Ellen.

I apologize. You see, there's just not much going on with the dairy;
Feed calves, put out hay, milk cows...and more of the same.

We do have one cow up the road who is soon to calve. H3 has a history of pushing out twins on a regular basis. In the 7 years I have been here she has had at least 3 sets of twins, I believe. Two sets of both heifers. By how wide she looks now I'd almost hazard a bet that she might have another set of twins, but we shall see. Maybe I ought to get a picture of her. Poor girl.

Oh, funny thing. Yesterday when I went up to feed the dry cows (of which H3 is one) they all got excited and did quite a bit of shoving and pushing. H3 happened to get in the wrong place at the wrong time and KA-BOOM, she got shoved over into the feed bunk, on her side, with her legs sticking out horizontally. She flopped around a bit and then got up to where her front knees were on the side of the bunk. (Another one of those, "Oh, for a camera" moments.) She finally righted herself.

When I told hubby about this he said; "Yes, that's why we have concrete bunks. Can you imagine what would have happened to one of those metal pipe frames with a plastic feed bunk in it?"

Thursday, November 17, 2011

The Case of the Cursed Pants

Last week when Ellen and I went to Lebanon we went to one of their excellent thrift stores downtown. Ellen loves to go to this particular store. I suspect it's because they have a kids' playroom. But she also loves to get "new" clothes.

I found a cute little pair of pants. (I don't have a pic because they are currently in the laundry...more on that later.) They are knit, light pink, with rhinestones on the bottom cuffs. They were only $1.50 because they had a faded spot on the bottom front. But since they are so light in color anyway you can't really tell, and for that price I figured they'd make great play pants, since they are in great shape otherwise.

So the first time she has them on, Friday, we go outside to play. She almost immediately kneels in the grass and gets stains on the knees. When we go in I take them off and treat them and get them clean as new.

The second time she wears them was Tuedsay, when she had that touch of flu or whatever bug. She was so draggy and tired that she was dozing and when she woke up and got up to go pee she didn't make it. Off they came for another laundering.

Today. Yes, today I put them on her again. Then after lunch she has maybe 2 bites of a brownie bar. She is still sitting there at the table but she lifts up her leg and there she's got chocolate plastered on the bottom of both sides of the pants.

Yes, they are in the sink soaking as I write this.

Poor pants.

I am wondering if I ought to let her wear them again. No telling what will happen the next time!

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Sneaker Holidays and a Vanishing Holiday

Sneaker Holidays

As a rule I am sorta-kinda always ready for Christmas fairly early. I usually start buying in late spring or summer. But this year Christmas kind of sneaked up on me.

Is is "sneaked" or "snuck?" I never can remember. I guess it's of no consequence.

At any rate.

This year I am not ready, except for my overseas pals. I have a vague idea of what to get a couple of people, but for the most part, I have no idea.

Halloween sneaked up on me too this year.

Sneaker Holidays. They catch you by surprised, unprepared.

AAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I think this is happening to me because I am getting older. I believe this is a chronic and universal ailment. The older one gets, the faster the time goes. And the quicker the holidays sneak up.

A Disappearing Holiday


Thanksgiving is next week.

How about you? Are YOU prepared for Christmas? Are you prepared for Thanksgiving?

Hubby thinks that Thanksgiving is becoming an outmoded holiday. Not because he thinks it's not important, but because it is just that retail-wise it seems to be getting pushed by the wayside. Three days before Halloween I went into the grocery store and all the fall decorations were down and the Christmas decorations were up.

What? Wait; what about those fold out crepe-paper turkeys, and the Pilgrims and their hats? What about the cornucopias?

Where has all of that fun stuff gone?

I'd like to know.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Dear Ellen..

A young friend on Facebook recently changed her relationship status to "single." I am afraid we inundated her with congratulations and advice rather than sympathy. Rather than overburden her or any one else on FB, I have been thinking through things I'd like to tell Ellen when she gets up to dating age.

Dear Ellen,

Right now you are only 4, almost 5 years old here in a little over 3 months. Your biggest worries are keeping your toys (I am constantly trying to get you to weed them out), wanting a new DVD to watch on the computer (we don't have a TV), and wanting to know what we are going to do on the next day. But a day will come when you will start thinking about boys. You will want to date them, maybe. Then eventually you may want to get married.

There are reams of books and advice out there on relationships. But there are a few things I wanted to tell you.

Here are the first three; the most critical things you ought to look for in a mate:

First off. Make sure he's a Christian. A solid Christian. That is the most solid foundation for a relationship that you can have. You need to walk together in Christ. Do not even start a dating relationship with a non-believer.

Second. Make sure he is financially responsible. You do not want a guy who cannot hold a job. This is as critical as number one up there. If he doesn't have the discipline to hold down a steady job, he probably doesn't have the discipline to make a marriage work. If he has any kind of money issues; can't keep a job, can't manage his money...whatever...light a shuck and get out of the relatinship. Doesn't matter what a sweet-talker he might be. Cut him off at the pass.

Third. Make sure that he is not a control freak. Men (and women too, but we are talking about marriage here.) who insist on controlling everything about your life way before marriage are going to be a nightmare to be married to. They often will become abusive. Oh, Ellen, you mean the world to me, and you mean so much more to the Lord, don't let anyone ever make you feel bad about yourself, that you are not worth anything. This is what a control freak will do to you to keep you in his grasp. NEVER let anyone abuse you physically or verbally. You are worth so much more than that. At the first sign of abuse, verbal or physical, do not linger in the relationship. Run. Leave it behind. Accept an apology, but don't go back. It (the abuse) will happen again. It always does. If it happens while you are dating, it will escalate after marriage, not get better.

Remember all of this sweetheart. I speak from experience here, having made the above mistakes. Learn from my mishaps and don't let it happen to you.

Love, Mommy

Monday, November 14, 2011

ARGH!!!

So I just spend half hour typing a post here, hit send and blogger logs out and gives me an error message. My post is gone, never to be recovered.

Please mourn for those words that you will now never read. For I do not have the time to retype them all.

Suffice it to say it wasn't much, though.

Maybe I will do a re-do later.

Maybe.

Happy blogging.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Give them an inch...

We had a great time at the Dixie Stampede yesterday. The show was spectacular, the horses were lovely, the food was really good. It was interesting eating a 4-course meal without utensils, but it worked out pretty well. Along toward the end they give you a hot wet heavy-duty paper towel.

What boggled my mind though was the fact that the place seated 1,100, they do 4 shows on Saturdays and EVERY seat is filled...every time. That is FOUR THOUSAND FOUR HUNDRED chickens, biscuits, corn on the cob, apple pastries...ect, every Saturday! FOUR THOUSAND FOUR HUNDRED! I told hubby next time I'd like a pass to go backstage and see the kitchens.

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In other news; it was opening day for gun deer season yesterday. As usual the buck madness ensued. Our neighbors, several of them who have property of their own, mind, have pestered to hunt over on our property. During bow season here a couple of weeks ago they wanted to set up a blind on the place across the road, down near the river. We let them. Then suddenly that wasn't good enough for them, they wanted to hunt in our field over near the west pasture. We let them for bow season but told them that our renter hunted over there during gun season.

Hubby had told our renter that he could go and hunt back behind the house there and even offered him a hunting lease, if he wanted.

So now, suddenly the renter has 3 or 4 buddies over there. Yesterday they got 3 deer and come over and asked if they could DRIVE back down over our place to get back behind there to get the deer out of the creek bottoms.

What?! That isn't back behind the house, that's way back off down the creek bottoms.

I said; well, the renter knows what we meant, but the other guys probably just took over. Still, hubby gets so aggravated with folks when they get carried away with this buck fever.

Last year someone had driven down into our section of the creek bed and butchered a deer down there...left the carcass even. We figure it was one of the Mennonites that our other neighbor lets hunt down on his property. They drive their truck down to his section of the creek...and that time they just kept going I guess.

On the flip side of the coin, our pastor is praying that he has a good deer season. He's a taxidermist and these 9 days or so of deer season determines the rest of his year financially; if people get good bucks and want them mounted or not. So I am praying he has a good year.

That's all..just my annual hunting season rant.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

On Being a Homebody

Really, to me there ISN’T any place like home. When it starts getting dusky outside in the evenings, I like to be at home. I want my family at home with me.

When it comes time to fly away and go visiting I start having “home” withdrawals several weeks in advance. I often feel queasy when I even think about leaving and then I start having traveling nightmares.

I prefer to be with what is familiar…with those I love.

Today I am taking a day off and going down to see Dolly Parton’s Dixie Stampede show in Branson. It makes me nervous to be away from my husband. He is staying at home. Plus, I keep thinking of all the things I could be doing at home instead of going off and enjoying an adventure.

Not that I am opposed to having adventures. After all, I DID up and travel to Malaysia by myself several years ago. Well, my friend met me there, but still it was rather nerve-wracking.

And I DID pack up and leave my whole life back in Oregon on a one way ticket out here to Missouri.

But, all in all, when the chickens come home to roost and the cows come to the barn for milking, I prefer to be at home, too.

Friday, November 11, 2011

Hurry before it crashes again...

OK, so either my internet connection is bad or Blogspot doesn't like me today or something. It keeps kicking me out of here. Every other site I go to works, but this one.

So....really quickly like.

Tonight I have to write up a blog to post for tomorrow, really early, because on the morrow "we" (meaning Ellen, myself and MIL and SIL) are going down to Branson to catch Dolly Parton's Dixie Stampede. Hubby got us the tickets! They were the discount kind. That is why we got them. But we are looking forward to this as it will be the Christmas show, with real, live camels and sheep and whatnot. Ellen is, of course, all agog.

We are all packing plastic forks and knives in our purses because they serve you a 4 course meal, but no dinnerware. Because supposedly that's the way real cowboys used to eat. Hmmmm...

The menu (according to the flyer): tender whole rotisserie chicken, hickory smoked barbecue pork loin, butter corn on the cob, their own creamy vegetable soup, herb-basted potato, hot home-made biscuit, Dixie's very own specialty dessert, unlimited Pepsi, tea or coffee.

This should be an adventure.

Hubby says that Ellen and I can share on plate and bring the other whole plate back to him. Heh! Well, I agree, it will save me the bother of cooking on Sunday.

Ha.

Have a great weekend. I certainly plan on it.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Ankle Biters

Today was the last day of the home school "pre-school" for Ellen. The first hour I taught my Spanish class. The second hour I went in to help in Ellen's class because the regular teacher was going to be doing a mom's class and demonstrating how to make yogurt.

Never again.

UGH!

There were 16 kids (Pre-K age) in the second hour. Only THREE of them were girls. The rest of course were terribly rowdy boys. ARGH! They were shoving and whacking and fighting each other.

This is not the norm. Or at least it has never been like that before when I was in there.

It was the longest hour I have spent this week. Usually it goes fast because they will have a craft or something. But today even during the craft time they were cutting up.

After the hour was over I hauled Ellen out of there and skedaddled as fast as I could.

And for the record. This is the last day for this semester, and this is the only day that Ellen didn't howl when I left. I begin to have hopes for Kindergarten. Even though when that subject comes up she howls that she isn't going to go to school.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Sew, sew...

I come from a family who sewed all the time. I married into a family that sews all the time. But I am a sewing dud.

I have a lovely, fancy sewing machine. I asked my husband for it for Christmas several years ago.

It has been sitting in its box in the spare bedroom for several years. Only used maybe twice.

Today I broke it out again...for a purpose that I can't reveal at this point in time because it might spill beans or let cats out of bags that ought not be spilled or let loose.

At any rate. It is always interesting to do something new and unusual with a four year old around.

She is always so very helpful.

While I am reading the instructions and trying to figure out how to load the thread and all, she keeps wanting to look at the instruction manual.

"I want to look at the pictures."

"Ellen, why do you need to look at the pictures?"

"So I can tell you how to do that."

In a few minutes, after I have figured out how to get the thread where it's supposed to be, and am trying to get the material where IT belongs Ellen peers over my shoulder and comments;

"That's not the way Auntie does it."

Well, hmmmm....!

I really do dream someday of being able to sew neat thinggummybobs and make my own curtains and napkins and potholders and other crafty things to give as gifts. But I am waiting until someone is in school. I have enough trouble attempting new things without a running commentary going on.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

A bit about Ellen

So I have amused you for two days with my marriage reflections. That was fun. Now what?

Ellen?

Yes, she cracks me up. I have a book that I need to get started with recording things in. It's called; Oh, What you Said. I have a long list I have kept of the funny things she has said over the past few years, since she has started talking.

Her first phrase was; "Who is that?" She'd draw out the "who"..."Whoooooo is that?" That's what I'd say when we heard her daddy coming in from chores.

Now it is so funny how she picks up these big words and then trots them out at the right moment.

A few months ago I was reading her a book on the sofa and hubby came up behind us and was teasing her. She sighed, and said; "Daddy, stop it, you're distracting me."

"Distracting?" She's four years old. Where does she get "distracting?"

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Last month she was in a snit when I told her she needed to get a bath. "I don't like baths. I completely hate them!"

Completely!

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Last night after supper she was pestering me to watch this new DVD we'd traded for. (swapadvd.com) I told her that she couldn't watch anything until the kitchen was cleaned up.

"Why?" she wanted to know.

"Because that's the rule." I told her.

"Well, I don't like rules. There shouldn't be any rules. It's just heartless!"

HEARTLESS! Hahahaha. Once again; where do they get these things?

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I have to be careful and not collapse laughing because then she'll get her nose out of joint because she knows I am laughing at her for some reason. She is at the point where she's very, very sensitive about being laughed at. It really offends her little sense of dignity. She is so serious about her little indignations; she can't understand how anyone could laugh at them.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Another Reflection: Internet Men

Continuing on with my anniversary reflections.

Occasionally people will ask me how I met my husband and how I ended up in Missouri when I was living in Oregon.

The world wide web snatched me up and flung me over here. Yes, it did.

At one point in 2003 I believe it was, I finally decided to bite the bullet and buy a computer. (My brother was so helpful in making this happen...so he must bear some of the blame for my being here in Missouri.)

After getting the computer one of the first things I did was to join a couple of pen pal sites. One of them automatically asked me if I also wanted to put a blurb in their singles site. So I did.

Look out!

As expected, I got several replies from overseas. I also got a reply from a Baptist minister in Georgia and one from some farmer in Missouri. I had to look up Missouri on the map to see where it was. Seriously. (I know, I am bad.)

The guy in Missouri wanted my phone number. We talked quite a bit. He had a dairy. I liked him a lot. Too bad he lived way out in Missouri.

To make a long story short, after a year I went to visit him. Five months after that I married him.

What astounded me was that only one...ONE...of my friends and none...NOT ONE...of my family, said anything contrary to the whole thing. Quit your job, leave all your family and friends on the West Coast, move across the country and marry some INTERNET GUY!?!? ARE YOU CRAZY!!??

Only one, a pen pal in Kansas, was skeptical of the whole thing, but she just opined that maybe I ought to think about it more.

That was all. My family cheerfully waved me adios, and most even happily came out for the wedding. Not a word to the contrary.

In retrospect they were right to not worry. It's been seven years and we, my husband and I, are happy as clams. I miss my family and friends, I wish they were all here too. But I have more family and new friends to add to the old, so all is well.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

One Reflection after Seven Years

This weekend marks our seventh wedding anniversary and I thought I’d share a few reflections of the past seven years.

Here is one:
Getting married for the first time at age 36 was rather a challenge in the cooking department. Cooking for one is much, much different than cooking for two; especially when the one you are marrying happens to be used to all kinds of homemade stuff; like potato salad and devilled eggs and desserts galore. In the 3 month time span between saying “Yes, I will” and “I do” there were hours of panicked ransacking of the internet to find recipes that I could maybe attempt.

I was dismayed to find out one of his favorite desserts is strawberry gelatin with bananas. As far as I am concerned gelatin is something that ought not to have been invented. The texture is just nasty. But, always game for a challenge, I bought up a couple boxes of the stuff to try my luck at it.

To start off with I discovered I’d forgotten bananas, but I was determined to go through with it anyway. So…I got out this fancy gelatin mold a friend had given me, did a 3 second perusal of the directions, sloshed some water in a bowl, stirred the red powder in and poured it into the mold.

I eyed it doubtfully; what I’d made didn’t quite fill the mold. Then I got out the second box; sloshed, stirred, poured. It still wasn’t completely full, but oh, well. That’d have to do. Into the fridge it went.

A couple of hours later I checked on it. The gunk in the mold was the consistency of one of those clear rubber balls that kids get; tough and bouncy-like. How were you supposed to get THIS out of a mold?

Oh, warm water. Right. I floated it in a bit of warm water. While it floated I re-read the directions.

AHA! Hehehehe…You are supposed to put TWO cups of water to one box of the stuff!

I turn back to the mold in the water. In the gelatin mold a small island of red rubber is floating in a large lake of red juice. It had mostly melted. Oops.

Hmmm… I sloshed in a bunch more water…into the mold that is, stirred and chucked it into the fridge for a second go round. After a couple of hours, I checked it again. Well, it was not so terribly rubbery this time. But not quite right either.

Bless my husband’s heart; he ate the stuff, no bananas and all, and didn’t complain. I knew then that we’d do fine.

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Talking about Gag Reflexes

Sometimes...on the rare occasion I ponder about my gag relflexes and wonder why it is that some things can gross me out and others don't. Here on the dairy we deal with different gross things, as one might imagine. I am sure any reader could think some up without even trying. I found that most dairy things don't bother me...but there are others that trip that gag trigger.

As a rule it's not the sight of things that makes my stomach heave, but smells. And sometimes it's just the idea.

Today, for whatever reason, Ellen suddenly announced; "Skunk tastes like chicken."

I ask; "How do you know."

She replied; "I just do. And skunk hair tastes like potatoes."

Me; "Ew. Eating skunk hair would be nasty."

Ellen: "Why?"

Me; "You'd get skunk hair in your teeth."

She had to ask why about that several times and as I was trying to explain it, I just got really queasy. Even writing it down here makes me feel bleck. The thought of skunk hair in my teeth apparently triggers my gag reflex.

I remember when I was expecting there were several smells that would gag me; bananas, peanut butter, cow pee, and mown grass. URK!

I can stand and feed a new bottle calf in the back corral whilst straddling huge chunks of bovine afterbirth and not think a thing of it. But talk about skunk hair in my teeth and that does it!

Friday, November 4, 2011

Of Vegetables and Acorns

So I have been trying to think of something deep, funny, and/or spiritually moving to blog about. Nothing has manifested at this time.

I therefore thought that since November is the month of being thankful I’d do a post or two or more on things that I am thankful for.

It occurs to me several times per week that I am thankful for a child who loves vegetables. When a four year old asks for more vegetables; carrots, cauliflower or broccoli, it is such a blessing. She especially loves cooked carrots. In spring she will also snarf down radishes, onions and green peppers. She remains skeptical about beets and asparagus, but that is just a minor issue. She loves peas and corn and green beans, too.

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The dairy news isn’t too great or earthshaking. This fall here in the Ozarks we have had a bumper crop of acorns. Tons of them. This is good for the turkeys, deer, squirrels…etc, but not for the cows, who love them. The girls slurp them down like they were cocktail peanuts. It’s very bad for them, unfortunately. Since the cows don’t chew them, the acorns just go down in the rumen and plug up the works. Acorns make the poop brown and yukky and stink like you wouldn’t believe. (Although I guess you have to be used to the smell of regular cow poop to appreciate the difference there.) And worst of all, milk production plummets.

On Halloween hubby took the milking herd off of the regular grazing grounds and started feeding hay and alfalfa. In about 3 days the milk production went up by 300 pounds. This is from a herd of about 35-40 cows. Their poop is back to being green again, but now it has that alfalfa stink. I am sure you needed to know that.

Until tomorrow.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Stray Goats...etc

This past summer and fall were good for strays.

At one point we had that stray black cow and calf; I think I blogged about them at the time. They were with us a week before we got them caught and back to their owner.

Here a month ago we had TWO stray cats show up. This is not uncommon for here on the dairy. We don't have any dogs, just Matilda the cat, and we have lots of hay sheds and barns and various outbuildings. But this one little stray; a black cat with a few white patches on his belly and throat, has adopted us for good. Ellen is enchanted with him; he is her favorite color. Yes, black.

He is a friendly little soul; more like an overgrown kitten. We are calling him "Boo" and treat him like one of the family. He needs his shots; which will happen maybe next week. I have been putting it off because putting money on the counter for him will make him OURS and not a stray. I personally could do without him. So could Matilda. But they are getting used to each other. And Ellen would pine without her Boo-cat.

To top it all off we also have a stray goat in the neighborhood. A neighbor got a wild hare to get a couple cute little goats when at a farm out of the area. They, our neighbor, did not have adequate fences for goats. Thus the stray. He took up under my mother in law's work shop and spent a month or so grazing her yard and garden area, dropping plenty of ball bearings (as it were) in the process. Hubby finally blocked off access to his hidey hole and he moved across the street to an abandoned lot. He still shows up from time to time. We are hoping someone can catch him before deep winter sets in. We shall see.

That's all for today.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

NaBloPoMo

National Blog Posting is in full swing. I barely remembered it this year. I haven't even signed up yet. They moved their site and you have to re-enter I believe. It's on BlogHer now. I am trying to sign up but the computer is giving me fits.

In any case. This year I am just going to stick with Dairy Daze and not get fancy. I didn't make any preparations for this so maybe I will just follow their prompts. It could be interesting that way. Ha.

That's all for now. I guess. I am running out of time today.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

On Halloween


Ellen just had to go trick or treating. I can honestly say it's not my idea. I am of two minds about the whole deal. I'd rather skip Halloween altogether.

For one thing, everyone is so OVERGENEROUS with their candy. She went to THREE places and got almost a full plastic pumpkin.

But she's so cute and she loves going. She even says; "Trick or treat." and "Thank you." to everyone. She's slowly starting to come out of her shell.