Monday, July 30, 2012


So, I didn't tell you, because I didn't notice, but that last post was my 888th post.

But this one is more important.

Happy Birthday to Me!
Happy Birthday to Me!
Happy Birthday, dear Melody!
Happy Birthday to ME!

I spent it, as usual, doing something having to do with the county Fair. Had to take Mary over to show some artwork. She did well.

If I had a plan for dinner, today would be perfect...

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Double Edged Sword

More rain today! We're so glad to see things greening up and growing again. I really have been worrying about our garden. Not the veggies so much, although our crop will be small this year. I've been worrying mostly about our shrubs. Some have already died; some are so brown and dry that I wonder if they can come back.

The lawn has been brown and crunchy. It is beginning to show signs of life again. This is the double edged sword. Our mower met it's end last year. You may remember how. Because we are fussy, and want what we want, and because our bank account is anorexic, we are doing without a lawn mower this year. Our plan is to save and buy the one we want next year, rather than settling for something less and hating it. As a result, we haven't been complaining much about the lack of rain. Now, as the grass begins to come back, we're going to have to scramble.

Because we're sitting on a double edged sword.

Monday, July 23, 2012

I'm Canceling Weekends

Do you look forward to weekends? I remember doing that. We couldn't wait for Fridays, loved lazy Saturdays, enjoyed family Sundays.

If the past few have been any indication of the future, I'm cancelling future weekends.

Friday was busy right up to 5pm. We had nice steaks for dinner, and enjoyed a little Sherlock in the night. But Saturday...

Saturday was the 4H dog show. We were up and at 'em bright and early, shuttling 3 dogs 2 towns over. These things make less and less sense every year. I wish I could organize one. I'd either revamp it into a masterpiece of efficiency, or I'd learn my lesson and shut up in the future. Mary's three dogs did well...until the sits and downs. One was set next to a dog who barked throughout the entire show. Barking dogs at an obedience show, in my opinion, should be treated like crying babies in church. Quietly take them out. But, no, barking brown Lab stayed, and when Skye had had enough of that noise, she got up to walk to Mary, where it was quieter. -30 points for the long sit. Ditto for the long down. Henry sat well through the long sit, and lay quietly during the long down...and then decided he'd had enough, too. Can't blame a barking dog for that one, just a stubborn corgi. Jaeger, Matthew and Keri's young Lab, was, in the words of the judge, "an active dog." While Mary was complimented on her handling of him, he, too, got bored during the long down and decided to sit up. -sigh-

After dropping dogs and girls at home, we headed out for an evening on the lake with some good friends. The evening turned into night, and then into early, early morning. But a good time was had by all.

Until we had to be for a Youth group breakfast at church... -yawn- It was fun, and Ryan showed up midway through. So, when the hay truck came by in mid-afternoon, there were two extra arms to lift bales! Wakiya will eat this winter!

After which came a 2-hour riding lesson for Mary and Wakiya. Oh, was that horsey MAD at her girl. "I was spending a perfectly LOVELY day in a perfectly LOVELY pasture, and you load me into a trailer, drive me across the world, to another barn, where you don't let me sniff the other horses, throw a saddle on my back, and expect me to LEARN?" Poor baby. The lesson was good, and both girls learned a lot.

But, when I fell into bed, all I could think was, "Thank you Lord, for another weekend. And thank you that the week is beginning and I can REST!"

Stay tuned...

Saturday, July 21, 2012

Army Mom Thoughts

I'm pre-empting my Saturday Farm Report a bit to make a point. I was on my way to work yesterday morning when I heard about the shootings in Colorado. I came in late to the story, so I still don't have all the information. But I have some thoughts.

I wish I had a dollar for every time someone has asked me, "Why did you let your kids join the military?" I could buy those cute shoes I saw last week! Anyway, my answer is always the same.

"They could be shot in a grocery store. They could flip their car some late night and be left paralyzed. Serving in the military is dangerous, but so is crossing the street."

Case in point. In that theater Thursday night/Friday morning were at least 20 servicepeople who work with or for the husband of a friend of mine, a colonel in the Air Force. Can you imagine? Your son/daughter signs up for the military. You are incredibly proud of their decision, but incredibly afraid for them. "Please not Afghanistan," you pray. "Please not Iraq. Give them, I don't know, Colorado." Then, one morning, you get The Visit. You get The Visit because your kid went to a MOVIE.

Pray for the parents. Pray for the friends. Pray.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012


Insomnia has returned. Every so often, I have a night or three when I get little sleep. I fall asleep just fine. It's just that I wake up two hours earlier than I need to, and can't get back to sleep. Last night I got to bed late; midnight. I needed to be up at 6 for another day of seminar. I knew I'd be sleepy later in the day, but I figured it would all work out.

I woke up at 4am.

I lay there for an hour and 15 minutes, worrying about a simple thing I had been ignoring for a couple of days. I knew it needed to be done, but I've been busy with lots of things, and didn't get to it. Now it might cost me some money, and that idea set my mind racing and then it just wouldn't stop.

So, at 5:15am, I got up and did what I had been putting off. Within 10 minutes, things were fine. But I'm not the kind of person who can go back to bed, so I stayed up, folding things, organizing other things, clean still other things. When it came time to go to work, I was ready for a nap. A nap I still have not had, and now it's suppertime.

Fatigue does crazy things. Today I was at my computer, trying to do an assignment during this seminar, and the tears just came. I was able to dam them up, but it was, pure and simple, exhaustion. Same thing as I drove home and the sun hit my eyes. The little bit of pain that caused was enough to set me over the edge again.

All this just to explain why I'm going to bed early tonight? Yep. Because I have to be up at 5am to take chickens to their destiny.

Wanna bet I won't be able to get up tomorrow?

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

The New Job

So I've been away today, learning to be a better teacher. Although I think that's going to be made a little more complicated, in that we added another online place to look for staff messages. As if our two e-mail addresses weren't enough.

I guess I should comment some on going back to work this fall. I'll be working part-time, still supervising study halls, but also teaching. I'll have a World History class, a one semester Home Ec class, and, somewhere in there, I'll have kids doing Keyboarding that I have to somehow supervise. I'm feeling a little stress these days, trying to put together something approaching lesson plans. I'm sure I'll get them done, but I'm sure I don't know how. I know, I know. "Well, if you know this stuff, just get up there and teach it." OK. It really IS that easy, she said, wishing again that there was a font for sarcasm.

Our school is small, just 85 students. Our staff is small; a principal, a secretary, 4 full-time teachers, 3 part-time. It really feels like a family. And you just don't want to let your family down. Added to this is the fact that this will be our youngest child's last year in high school, and, well, there's some pressure, a little trepidation, and a whole lotta emotion.

36 days and counting....

Monday, July 16, 2012

-whew- Glad THAT'S over!

This weekend is one for the books.

On Friday I dropped Minah off at one of her part-time jobs. She helps a lady near here with her garden. As she stood at the door, she felt something on her leg. Not being from around these parts, she went to brush it away without double-checking. The hornet on her leg stung her, then jumped to her hand, and stung her twice. Since this was only her second time in her life being stung, (the first was in our chicken house)I went into the house with her and her employer, Ellen, and we doctored her up a bit. We waited about an hour and, realizing that she was not having an allergic reaction, went home. (She had decided to give gardening a try on another day!)

This weekend was John's family reunion in Grand Haven, Michigan. Since Mary had been gone for the week, and would be returning late Saturday, I stayed home. Keri and I planned a day of shoe shopping and girl time. John took Minah to the reunion. In the morning, I went to work. After work, I called Keri and...found out that she was on the way to the ER. Seems she ate something not quite right, and her body was letting her know. After blood work, IVs for dehydration, and a food poisoning diagnosis, she was on her way home. But, no shoe shopping. Bummers.

I was headed to Wally World for some shopping, and offered to pick up the prescriptions the ER doc had written. As I walked in, my phone rang. "Minah's hand is horribly swollen," said John. "I'm taking her to the ER." Aaack!! She's in a foreign country, not in our home state, with John, and she's headed to the ER. Being the good "dad" that he is, he sent me a photo.

Isn't that lovely? Not an allergic reaction, though. Just a localized reaction to the sting. Thank goodness!

After my day Saturday, I was nervous about picking up Mary. What would go wrong...Well, nothing, thank the Lord. she came home, safe and sound. Sunday was a lovely day; Keri even recovered enough to come out for a bit. Still, though, no shoes.

Wasted weekend.

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Saturday Farm Report

People have been wondering, "When did we last have rain?" Looking at my last post, it seems it's been just about a month, and that rainfall was so hard and fast it didn't "stick." This morning we woke to slow, steady rain. It was a wonderful blessing, although it didn't last. I'd say there's about a half inch out there, and it's done. Enough to wet the ground and tease the grass, but, I'm afraid, not much more. I do hope I'm wrong.

Aside from watching the skies and praying for rain, we've been keeping on keeping on. We've had many, many, horrible, hot days, much like the rest of the country. And, much like the rest of the country, we've been living with it. I dread the next electric bill.

Chickens are growing well. Their date with destiny is this week. Turkeys are becoming obnoxious; they do that, this time of summer. Once the chickens are gone, they'll settle down some. The pigs are really doing well. Their date with destiny isn't until September. Last year, we took then in July, and almost lost one to heat and stress along the way. Hopefully things will be cooler this time. Then again, who thought March and June would be so hot...

We bobbled the Fair. We had intended to show photos again, and a certain young lady's prom dress, and some baked things. But we missed the deadline. We do that alot. Our fault, no use complaining about it.

I've been cleaning and decluttering and organizing, preparing to be a working mom in the fall. Things are looking better, and next up is getting some lessons planned. They won't be perfect, but I'm OK with that. Surviving is more important that excelling, this year!

John is off this weekend at his family's reunion; Minah went along. Miss Mary returns from a youth conference tonight, so I stayed behind to pick her up. I plan some shopping and some lesson planning today; I'd better get to it!