Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Life With(out) Father

The Dad of the house is gone.  He's gone all week on a job out of town.  So, somebody has to do cow/calf chores. 
Not me, not me, not me,

and you can tell it isn't my job because it isn't raining.  If I have to do chores I have to do them in mud. 


Along with calf chores, come CAT chores.  Some neighborhood cat had the gall to have her kittens in OUR barn, which means Lynette now thinks we have kittens for her to play with. 
We are trying to get rid of cats not get anymore 'fotched on' ones.
But do these kids care?  No Way!

We've got a lot of cows to feed at night.  Of course, it isn't a lot of cows if you are a cow farmer, but quite a lot for a little 5 acre place in a subdivision.  We've got 4 cows we raised from calves that are being fattened, and three bottle calves of this year.

Hay, Hay!

Zane loves anything to do with the outside, and if he sees someone else doing it, he's going to, too.  Only he really does need tools a little closer to his size.

 Corn and protein!

After the putting away,

Comes the fun!

These bales are about 4" taller than I am.

It was a beautiful evening. Calm, with the early evening sun going down and making colors more brilliant and highlighting in gold. It's evenings like this that remind me that I'm glad to be alive, living here, in this particular spot, with MY family, with another generation loving the outdoors, and watching the cows.

I'm counting my blessings.  Which I really need to, since the van didn't start today when I needed it to, and there is a leak in the basement ceiling.

Ahhh, Real Life, you just gotta love it!

Monday, September 27, 2010

A Real Treat

I don't like to shop, in fact, I would rather clean house than shop.  At least I get to stay home!!  But when asked what she would do with her detasselling money, she said, "Shopping in Lincoln!!"   She wanted to go before school started but various things including our plans and the plans of her friend, meant we didn't go until after school started. 

That's sounds really bad, doesn't it.  Poor girl, didn't get to go back to school shopping until after school started! However, the Freshman go in a day before the rest of the school, so Friday they went in for orientation and Saturday, we went shopping. 

First stop, Plato's Closet.  A great place to make your money stretch.  They are a resale shop for "in-style" teen clothes.

Then the mall. I think they are getting rather bored with the stores and are finiding the foliage more intersting.

They are still kids, as you can see, and are riding the escalator, just for fun.

Lunch in the food court.  That is really a treat for us, too, since going out to eat is seldom on the menu.

This is panda express, and we shared.  You get quite a bit to eat!

Lynette had a wonderful time and was pleased with her purchases.  It was nice to have a good, fun day before big changes are happening.  Her fortune was very apt.  Not only is going to high school a big change, but she was also saddened with the change of instructors at Taekwondo.

Poor dears, a long hard day, it looks like they were made to do it!  Now, this would be more correct if I was in this position. 

The Aliens Have Landed!

Or maybe it was corn leaves.

Wind is an important part of life here in Nebraska.  In fact, you better not move here if you can't take the wind.  Those of us who are here have learned how to deal with it.
(I wander around like some demented creature, but I'm dealing with it.)

There is a field right north of our property, one year is is beans, the next year is corn.  This is a corn year.  It creates all sorts of problems with us as all the woman in this family seem to be allergic to corn dust.  The farmer got right on the ball and combined the field, but we've had several windy days with 25+mph winds that blows that dust and leaves right to us. 

Right onto the patio and then they're trapped.

Jim took these photos for me and we are trying to show how full this little spot is.  There is a half barrel under there. 

Sigh, I suppose we need to get out the rake.

Since then, our nice little round pile by the back door has enlongated. If you enjoy crunching through leaves, this is the place!!

We had a nice little rain afterwards that made the pile soft and soggy, and easier to get rid of so we are no longer getting corn leaves in the house.

Friday, September 17, 2010

The Laundry Monster

eI love this weather.

When summer finally gives way to cooler weather and we can see fall ahead rather than just a page on the calendar.

A change in seasons always prompts me to want to do some digging out cleaning.  There is GREAT satisfaction in taking everything out of a closet and throwing most of it away.  The other prompt that got me started on the guest room, is that company is coming and they might want a place to sleep.  That room has been rather a dumping ground of late.

So, the first thing I did, was fold up the playpen, (Zane has been able to crawl out of it for months, so it hasn't been used,) and wash ALL the bedding, blankets and everything.   I picked a beautiful day because it goes against the grain for me to dry bedding in the dryer.

I really love to hang out clothes.  I was doing laundry and hanging out clothes when I was 12 years old. It was one of my favorite jobs.  I always liked being outside when I was a kid.

I don't hang up all the little things anymore, or towels either.  I DO have a life.  Just because I like to hang out clothes doesn't mean I love to spend all my time doing it.

So, here we are, all the bedding on the line.  Zane carries my little basket of clothes pins outside and stands oh, so nicely by my side handing them to me at just the right time...


He's playing in the sheets as soon as I get them on the line.  

A good day to dry things on the line!

Another thing I love about this time of year is the absolutely gorgeous color in the photographs.

Kids just love to run up and down between rows of sheets and blankets.  I remember thinking of caves and magical places when I was older and found places to hide.  I think they love the places where they get sort or 'lost', a here again, there again sort of feeling.  It must be exciting, for this little 20 month old anyway, to disappear from Gramma's sight for awhile and then listen for the excitement when he's 'found' again. 

This was such a gorgeous day.  I love to take photos this time of the year because the colors are just eye- popping brilliant.

And of course, this one is ALL boy....

Just like his uncle.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Bedtime in the Middle of the Day

Once upon a time there was a little boy who would sleep nicely in his bed, or in his playpen with any of a number of fleece blankets. (Which is really handy by the way because I could always find a clean one to tuck him up with.  We could lay him down with his bottle and run out the door and he was TRAPPED, bwhahahah. He had to go to sleep whether he wanted to or not. 

Then, one day, someone laid this little boy down for a nap in the middle of the afternoon, and closed the door intending to spend the afternoon doing something very fun that little boys would be no help at all and in fact a very great hindrance, only to find him standing right next to me when I turned around.

Nap time as we knew it was now over. 

So, for a little while this little boy got to take his naps in his crib in the basement, which worked really well for a couple of weeks until the inevitable happened and the thumping noise coming from the basement was followed by wailing noises coming up the stairs. 

Now, it really was over, any free time in the household resulting from untended naps, was over.

But, as in all good stories this one has a happy ending.  The little boy now wants to sit in his gramma's lap when he gets tired, snuggling up with a big fleece blanket and wiggle and laugh and cuddle and rummage around until he gets comfortable.  (Which is sometimes in another chair after awhile.)

And sometimes he has a nap and sometimes he doesn't, but they always happily get cuddle time ever after.

Now, for those of you who peeked ahead to look at the pictures may now be wondering what on earth a dissertation on the napping behavior of the "under twos" has to do with the pictures displayed. 

Well, nothing, except they both involve beds.

Zane has always loved my little pink microball pillow, he throws it, carries it, wears it and lies on it. It's the first thing he goes for when he gets on my bed.  After he throws it off, he starts jumping, but that is a different story.

The story that goes with the pictures is this:

Once upon a time I washed my sheets and went to put them on the bed.....

which I do peridically and I don't want to write that kind of story again, because it doesn't really end happily ever after if I have to make the bed all over again after Zane is done with it.


I was putting the sheets on the bed and like I did with my own kids, we played with the sheets, covering him up in them and rolling him around in them and hopefully getting him to run off after awhile and play something else. But, no, not him!!!  He got the pillow and tucked himself in under the bottom sheet and went "ny-ny".

And he did it again, and again, and I finally gave up and left him to it and went to do some other task that I left probably because he was 'helping' me that time, too. HE had a great time.

So, today, we were doing laundry, he helped me (really he did) take things out of the dryer into the basket, and from the washer into  the dryer and we went upstairs to fold and put away.  Zane thought that part was great; I just had a hard time persuading him to let me fold the underwear and socks before he threw them in the drawer.

After the towels went into the drawer, I snatched all the rest of the stuff away and left quickly, which is how many of our jobs turn out together, and came back to Zane tearing the bed apart to climb in it.

This time, I grabbed the camera.

Thinks he's pretty cute, huh?

Getting all tucked in.

And I'm very very sorry this photo is so fuzzy, but I had to be quick, because Zane knows now that he can see the picture on the back of the camera.

And I had to remake the bed.

The End.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Art 1

Lynette likes art, she likes to make things using her hands.  Art was one of her first choice of electives for high school, and this stippling picture is the first major project.  She is doing some finishing touches here, The making of all those little tiny dots up until now took about 18 hours in three days, which was the bulk of the project.

A close up

This is absolutely marvelous in a fond parents' eyes and we don't really care about art critics.  The whole process involves choosing the subject, tracing the subject on to a grid, and placing values for the 'lights to darks'.  There are probably a few more steps in there before the actual stippling begins.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Sweet Things

We now have a fire pit, which is a good thing since I am part of a family of pryomaniacs. Without the fire pit, the desire of 2/3 of my children want to burn the big burn pile on a regular basis no matter what the weather and it was getting rather old to say, "It's too hot/windy/rainy/dry", "Dad's too busy/tired/whatever", and "I don't have anything to do with fires."

Now, this nice little fire pit than Jim built in one day while Lynette and I were shopping in Lincoln.  (No wonder he could get a lot done, no one was there to bother him.)  So, we can have fires, the kids can have fires, the neighbors can have....oh, maybe not, the insurance company might object.

So, now after supper we go outside and have a little fire and eat our dessert out there.

We are training Zane how to behave around the fire pit.

We are also teaching Zane how to eat toasted marshmallows.

Which involves the rest of us ducking while he swings a warm, sticky, sugary marshmallow around.


Zane didn't really like the sticky all over his face!

Joke of the day:

Why do toddlers wear shoes?

So, mom's (and gramma's) don't have to kiss "owies all better" on dirty feet.

accckk, thbbth, yuck