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Thursday, November 23, 2017

Thanksgiving 2017

No pictures for this one; just random thoughts. 

Monday evening my bro Dan drove up for about a 36 hr visit.  He still had to work, remotely w/ his computer and cell phone, but we got in a good visit.  It was good to see him though he couldn't stay for Turkey Day today.

All seven of us (Gary, Ellen, myself and the 3 in-laws) hied ourselves over to my mom's place for Thanksgiving, various ones of us toting bits and pieces of the meal. SIL gets a free turkey from work, so she fixes the turkey, plus dressing and dessert. And a tray of cranberry sauce.

 Aunt-in-law always -for every get-together-fixes a big pot of pinto beans w/ham; cooked on her wood stove.  It might seem strange to have pinto beans for the holidays; but they are delish.  She always gives us the leftovers because she knows how much Gary loves them.  I usually put half of them in the freezer for later on.  Anyway, she also brought lemonade and mixed veggies.

I did home-made mashed taters, gravy from cans that Elna sent over, deviled eggs, and two low-carb desserts; a German Walnut cake and a low-carb pumpkin cheese cake, both of which were very good. Oh and some real whipped whipping cream to go along with them.  That was a hit. 

We listened to my mom's same 2 or three stories of growing up and her trip to Georgia back when she was 15 yrs old; which would have been back in 1944. 

Ellen and I have them mostly memorized because she frequently shares th on Sundays when we are over there for dinner after church.  AND she shares it most every time duringem the ladies meetings at church once per month.Here is basically what she says;

"Oooo...I had and aunt 6 months older than I was, and an uncle who was one month younger.  So I was never the eagerly awaited anticipated first grandchild."

Then she laughs,

Then she goes on to tell her story about how she, her sister, and her uncle went on a trip to Georgia back when they were 15 yrs old.


Saturday, November 18, 2017

Random Photos

Here are a few shots of various scenes around the dairy here.  I haven't posted many pictures lately on here so here goes.

Back in October.  This hickory to the east of the milk barn likes to put on a fall show; especially in the evenings as in this shot.



Fall means cooler weather; so off we go to get firewood.  Here is the dairy farmer himself, ripping into this limb. 

This sycamore fascinated me with its wet bright green trunk; the peeled white part sets it off.  Plus the smaller limb growing straight up looks like a separate tree in the background.


In October I found this box turtle fairly freshly dead; just lying on the ground by a stump.  I took it and wedged it into the fork of this tree.  About 4 or 5 days later the shell was back on the ground and quite empty except for a few tiny bones.  I picked it up and wedged it back in to place. 

Heifers happily eating their breakfast. 





Finally; Bella, the happy dairy doggy!
This appears to be a Native American marker tree; but surely it's not old enough to be sitch.


Friday, November 17, 2017

Back Again

Our old laptop crashed a month or so ago and this new laptop wouldn't let me log into Google.  Then when I figured out what I needed to do (clear the history) and did it, Google itself wouldn't let me log in.  For some reason, way back when I created this account I was trying to be all stealthy and private and didn't use a real name for the account.  So I have no idea what my name actually is on this blog. 

*sigh*

But after much finagling around I figured out the email I use for this blog and the log in.  Those two have been inscribed in permanent ink in a place I will see frequently; lest I forget it again, or the computer or laptop crash again. 

So now that I have access I shall attempt to remember stories and happenings and enter them here forthwith.

Yes, I shall.

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Summer's Lease

September sighs
A cooler breath
And summer's verdure dims,



September shifts
Drowsy, relaxed,
Like insect-laced leaves
Languid on limbs



Summer's grip eases
Releases early gems
To gleam on paths


To glow in clear pools
Of the Faerie Spring

To blanket secret woods
Where sleepy spells drift
and sway between the shadows

September shrills
With crickets' farewell to
Steamy nights


Summer stills
In September,
The Faerie Spring
Is almost dry
September sways
And sweeps summer's
Harvest

From branch to
Forest floor






To become Spring's
Promise









Thursday, September 14, 2017

Bye Deuce

We sold all the of puppies.

 And even Deuce.


I sorta miss Deuce.  We had him about days less than a full year.  I feel like I failed him; but we just don't have the time to train the dogs and he was starting to be aggressive toward Bella.  Like he was jealous of her and/or didn't have patience with her air-headedness.  I'd have them out on leashes and he'd just up and attack her for no reason.

Anyway; he went to a family with two kids so he will get all the attention.  He was just eating it up when they were here to pick him up.

But now we are back down to just Bella.

And now just Bella and I go on our rambling walks again; free from any aggravating males.  Bella loves to chase squirrels; Deuce never tolerated that. 



Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Bucket Head

Last Tuesday, the 5th, Gary got this bizarre call from the in-laws down the road. 

"Come down here and see what you can do, there's a calf with a bucket on her head!"

Gary came up to the house from the barn to ask me to go see about her. 

So I did.

Um, yes.  There she was in the field next to the in-laws place; with a bucket on her head in very truth.





How in heaven's name did she get a bucket on her head?

Well you may ask. 

We only have a faint idea of where said bucket came from.

Many years ago, like maybe 7-9 yrs, we had a calf out in that pasture that had some sort of problem.  I vaguely remember toting water or feed to her in bucket.  All I can figure is that one of those water buckets must have been abandoned out there. 

Heifer 231 found it and apparently did more exploring than was strictly necessary.  She could see a bit over the rim if she held her head just right so she wasn't easy to approach. But I followed her round and round a few times and managed to get hold of the top edge of the bucket.  She jerked away of course, and since the bucket was super brittle it split it in several places lengthwise.

She ran into a tree and split it a bit more; but then she holed up in a thicket and I couldn't get to her.  So, as it was getting dark, I just left her there.

By the next morning she was free!  I was very thankful of that, too!

The dairy fun never ends!

Saturday, September 2, 2017

Our Trip to Totality

August 21, 2017 was the Great American Eclipse.

We kept Ellen home from school.  Gary and I, my mother in law, sister in law and Gary's aunt all packed lunches and headed up north to the totality zone.

It was fun.

The drive there was super easy; no traffic to contend with whatsoever.  We took the back roads, past acres and acres of corn and soybean fields.  Turned off of 64 at Cole Camp; went through that lovely little town.  Ended up in Pilot Grove.  We found their little city park and joined quite a few others there:


It was like a big impromptu festival.  We all used the special eclipse glasses Gary had ordered months ago.  He got a 10 pack for like 2.60 something. 






We set up our chairs, got out our lunches and waited.

And waited.


Eventually the light got a bit dimmer and the temps dropped almost imperceptibly.



The crickets and night bugs started chirping and creaking.  The street lights came on there in the park.
And at the moment of totality everyone started cheering.  It was a party atmosphere.

Then, after a bit over 2 minutes; it was over.  The light gradually came back, the bewildered night bugs and crickets simmered down...and everyone started packing up to go home.

Getting home was the major headache.  We decided to go the straight, supposedly faster route home; through Sedalia.

Bad choice.

Everyone else had decided the same thing.

It took awhile, but we made it home.  It was a once-in-a-lifetime thing here in Missouri.  But the next total eclipse will be in just 7 years, in 2024, across Texas for one state.  I doubt we will get to go down there; it's in April and Ellen will be a junior in high school!  EEK!


Sunday, July 9, 2017

Then There Was One...

Bella had three pups, we registered them.  To register them you have to give them names, so from top to bottom: Jip, Bailey and Mick. 

I named the two males; Gyp and Mick.  Ellen came up with the spelling of Jip, so that's what we sent in.  Ellen named Bailey. 

In any case yesterday Jip went to live with a friendly paunchy bachelor-type dude in his late 40s or early 50s maybe.  He lived north of Clinton, Missouri. 

Today Bailey went to live with a family in Springfield, MO.  A lady had called and said they'd come see her today and when two little blond girls got out of the SUV I figured Bailey will likely have a good life.  They were gaga over the pup and the dad seemed really patient with the dogs and the little girls. 

But that leaves just little Mick.  Poor little feller; I hope someone takes him to a good home. 

Monday, July 3, 2017

Surprises

Good surprises are fun. 

Sometimes you really want something for a long time.

You try to make it happen, but for one reason or another it fizzles out. 

So you don't bother trying any more, you just sit back and wish.

And think how great it would be if you had this thing. 

Occasionally you peruse catalogs and consider buying it, but then you rationalize it away:
......too frivolous
......no room to put it
......likely it would die anyway of
......disease or some varmint

So you close the catalog and toss it. 

Then one day, last summer some time in fact, someone (the husband in fact) notices something and says; "Looks like you have a tree growing there. Might be some sort of fruit tree."

And he adds in his Eeyore way; "Probably be from a hybrid and won't produce anything."

So you forget it. 

But then a year later in March you see something:





No, actually not the photo-bomber in the background.  Ha ha...

You see pink blossoms.

Pink blossoms on your sterile fruit tree.

And you wonder and wonder what kind of fruit tree you have.

Then it comes a killing frost.

So you give up hope.

And forget about it again.

And THEN in June you see it...THEM:

A PEACH!

A real LIVE PEACH!

And you count and find out there are SEVEN real live fuzzy peaches on your very own fuzzy surprise fertile peach tree!

YAY!

They are really good too.  I think a varmint got one.

It's a miracle that the varmints didn't get them all.  But we enjoyed the few we got.

(Thanks: It's fun to get wonderful surprises like a fruit tree you have always wanted but never had before.  Life is a miracle and God still is a miracle worker. )











Sunday, June 18, 2017

Puppies!


For the past month I have neglected to record that the TDIDW (the dog I didn't want) had 4 puppies on May 11th of this year.  She and Deuce finally got 'er done.  Unfortunately the runt didn't survive; so we have 2 males and one female we are trying to sell as registered for $220 each.

To me this seems a crazy amount to pay for a dog; but after doing a search on the WWW it is actually amazingly cheap.  We paid $111 for Bella (the $11) was to get her registered with the ABCA (American Border Collie Association).  But on some Border Collie sites people are asking up to $1600 per pup!  Whew!

We have had 2 inquiries on them, and though we answered them so far no one has taken us up and actually come to see the pups.  I hope we can get rid of them.  It is already a pain trying to clean up after 5 dogs!  And they have little doodles still! 

Saturday, May 6, 2017

Childhood and Sunlight

Childhood and sunlight,
both elusive and
ephemeral
Flicker between the leaves
Dance on the water

Shine bright in the treetops


Both grow dim with
The passage of time

But if you search
Peering down leaf-strewn
ravines
With the eyes of youth


You may find echoes of childhood
Still wading barefoot
In clear waters


Where childhood and sunlight meet once again
To float free


Or shine on the mossy rocks and feathery ferns


Of a Faerie Spring.


Sunday, April 30, 2017

A Walk After a Flood

It has rained almost non-stop here for the past 3 days; just one storm after another sailing by overhead.  The flooding in part of Missouri south of us has been horrendous and a few lives have been lost.  Notably a lady attempted to drive over a water-covered bridge and was swept away.  Somehow she managed to get rescued, but 2 small children in the car were swept away.  So needless, so tragic.

The Niangua River here, close to us, flooded badly again.  Not as badly as last year; I don't think it got over the Windyville bridge, but very, VERY close to it.  Neighbors across the river had their basement flooded again.  EEK!

So anyway, after a few days of laying up in their doggy houses I figured Bella and Deuce would like a long walk.  Ellen and I took them down to the creek to see what we could see.

First off at the bottom of the hill they found this:

Some sort of snapping turtle.  They didn't bother him too much; seemed to instinctively know not to mess with him.

There were still large areas of water all over in the creek bottoms.  Deuce had to try most of them out by lying down and squidging around in them.  LOL  Such fun.


Here's a funny pair of pics:  The dogs waded fearlessly into the rushing creek waters.  It looks quite calm in the pic, but it was really running through super high, super fast.  Ellen is watching and almost freaking out because she's afraid they'll get washed away. 

Then in the next pic, they have again instinctively sensed the danger, headed out of the water and toward her to see what her problem is, she is warning them off, "Don't jump on me!"






You can see a ways away from the creek what it leaves behind; every tree and clump of grass has a pile of debris behind it.  



This flood seems to have left quite a bit of debris; leaves and limbs and whatnot.

Last but not least:

Fluffy survived another flood.






Friday, April 28, 2017

Blind Turtle

The post in which I talk about how my RES was blind and now can see!

ALERT!  CAUTION!  I am not a veterinarian.  I am not giving any treatment advice here! 

I am only telling the story of my turtle, a common red-eared slider, or pond turtle.  We call her Turkle. I actually have no idea if this is a "he" or a "she", but I decided on "she" just to make things easier when I write about her. You can find the story of how I found her here: The Turkle"

As of this writing I have had her about a year.  Feeding her has been a challenge; and this is the snag upon which hangs this tale.

Unbeknownst to me the diet of the RES is about 75% vegetation, according to one website.  From the get-go she summarily refused anything but protein; wouldn't eat the pellets, wouldn't strike at earthworms even; just cooked chicken or dried shrimp or mealworms.  So for the first 5-6 months of her life that's what I gave her.

Then Dec of 2016 as the temps grew colder I noticed she began to just not eat.  She'd hide in her hidey hole, or sun herself occasionally under her lamp, but wouldn't eat.  I assumed she was just doing some sort of semi-hibernating like all the pond turtles do around here.  This continued for about 3 months, though she'd occasionally strike at food I'd put in her habitat.

Then about March 30th 2017 I really took a good look at her and was appalled to discover her eyes were swollen.  She wouldn't react by retracting her head when I waved my hand over her.  I got online and did a bit of panicked research on the subject and viewed many many pictures of blind turtles.  I learned there could be 2 causes; lack of vitamin A or some sort of bacterial infection.

Here were some of the suggestions: take turtle to the vet, put cod liver oil on turtle or in her water, give her carrot baths.

I contacted my neighbor who works at the local veterinarian's office; nope they don't do turtles, but did advise that if it was an infection to put penicillin on her eyes.

After a bit more research I started my own treatment. I decided that there was a 99.99% chance her eye problems were due to diet deficiencies.  I wanted to start treatment immediately but since we live way out in the middle of nowhere I had to work with what I had on hand at the time.  Therefore I began with a carrot bath.  (I decided to not do the cod liver treatment; ick, messy, gross.)

Here's a pic of what I used:

                                         (except in total I used several pounds of carrots...lol)

Here is the timeline of my treatment:

Thursday 30 March 2017:  Discovered Turkle's eyes are swollen shut, she does not respond when I wave hand over her head.  Treatment:  Whacked about 4-6 carrots into chunks and processed in blender in 2-3 batches w/ water to make carrot juice.  Sieved this through one of my husband's clean older hankies (he won't miss it until he reads this...haha).  Ended up with maybe 2 cups "juice." Put Turkle into bowl w/ carrot juice, it just barely covered her shell.  Left her there full 24 hours.

Friday 31 March:  Removed her from carrot juice bath, let dry overnight in bowl

Saturday 1 April: In the AM: got up nerve, used one of my T1D daughter's insulin syringes to inject 2 units of Vitamin A oil taken from over-the-counter Vit A capsules purchased from Walmart.  Injected into Turkle's butt, about 1/2 inch or so from tail.  Put Turkle back into clean water until evening.
  
Sat PM: Began second 24 hr carrot juice bath.

Sunday 2 April: Removed from carrot juice bath in PM, put into clean water overnight.

Mon 3 April:  Removed from clean water, let bask under her lamp.  While dry dribbled a 3-4 units of calf med, some sort of anti viral stuff, onto her face on the off chance that this might be some kind of infection.

Turkle jerks her head under in reaction to movement over head.  YAY!

Put her into water and covered surface of water with turtle food; she strikes at it.  Am hoping she ate some.

Put Turkle back into carrot juice bath for 24 hrs.

 Tues 4 April 2017:  Mid-morning...Turkle jerked her head back under carrot juice when I approached her.  Eyes still swollen though, seems to only peer about briefly at intervals.

From this last entry up until Sat 24 April I gave up hope because she no longer seemed to respond.  Though I did do one more injection of Vitamin A into her butt sometime about 10 days after the last carrot juice soak.  I'd put her in a bowl of water w/ food and occasionally she would strike at food, but not often.  But in that time; about 20 days, only once or twice would she strike at food or react to movement overhead.  Her eyes stayed swollen. 

On Saturday 22 April Turkle reacted to movement over her head.  I was so excited.  I gave her another 24 hr carrot juice soak.

Sunday 23 April: I saw her actually peering at me with her left eye.  That eye is no longer terribly swollen.  But the right eye is still profoundly swollen and appears to have white film over it.  I am hoping it is just the inner membrane and that it will retract.  Put her into clear water.

Monday  24 April; Gave her another shot of about 1-2 units of Vitamin A again and another carrot juice bath.

Tues 25 April:  Turtle's right eye is quite miraculously gone down.  At least it's not white like it was.

Wed 26 April:  She's peering at me with both eyes now!  YAY! 



The little dark slit on the side of her head is her pupil.  I will add that in this pic you can see her shell appears to be doing what I assume they are talking about when they say "pyramiding."  She still refuses to strike at any kind of vegetation.  I will have to harden my heart and refuse to give her much proteins until she learns to eat her veggies. Hopefully then her shell will start to grow like it should.

As of today; 28 April, she appears to see out of both eyes, reacts to movement and seems to be doing OK.  Time will tell.

That's my blind RES story. 

Thursday, April 20, 2017

A Walk in Early Spring

Yes, I am going to post twice today.  Because I feel like it.  A bit over a week ago I took the dogs for a walk out to the west of the house, just above the Faerie Spring...which I haven't been to yet this spring.  At any rate here are a few pics from that. 


This, I believe, is a marker tree.  I think sometimes these trees a created naturally; but this one just seems too, I dunno, too perfect.  Apparently the Native Americans would tie saplings over to create these trees on purpose to mark trails, or some other landmark.  There are three of these, the other two are much smaller and may be just coincidence, but they are all along a ridge just above the Faerie Spring.


Here's a panorama picture I tried out with my camera.  I wanted to get a shot of the dogwoods in bloom.  I always try to get blooming dogwood pics but they never turn out as breathtaking as the trees are in real life. 



Another dogwood shot.  They have been really beautiful this year.


Closeup, with Bella's hiney in the background.


(Thankful notes:  I am thankful for lovely blossoms in spring.  Fascinating mysteries like marker trees.  And a dog I do not want who photo bombs my pics.  LOL)