Father’s day for farmers

We won’t have a big celebration for Father’s Day. There isn’t time for that in a farmers schedule.

The girls have requested to help with a dinner they planned of salad, fried chicken, onion rings and fried pies. They will make Lynn a card, and I got him some new work pants. Beyond that, it will be business as usual.

But really it’s the simple thing that matter most…like tonight Lynn began to teach Caroline (who loves numbers) about how to calculate soybean population. (Here is the formula he was using https://www.agweb.com/mobile/article/calculate-soybean-populations-with-the-hula-hoop-method-naa-sonja-begemann )

We will spend time together after church doing chores.

And we will get to enjoy views. 

We will get to spend the day together and together is what we enjoy.

Happy Father’s day!

No kids at the grocery store

I went to the store today withOUT the ratbabies. 

It was quiet. It was peaceful. I could read my grocery-list in its entirety and not have to peel a small person off a merchandising display.

It was lovely.

Except
Nobody told me ANY jokes.
Nobody fought over who got to hold my hand.

There was absolutely no one at the store that got so excited about anything (and everything) they literally jumped up and down and screamed with joy.

Nothing embarrassing (but funny) happened. At all.

No one danced by the frozen foods.

There were no fights over the shopping cart.

I got zero hugs, and zero kisses.

It was normal, and boring….and a little bit lonely.
Good golly …. I think I actually missed grocery shopping with my lovely children, and all of their talkative, distracting, messy glory. 

This doesn’t mean taking them to the store in the future won’t eat at what little sanity I have left. 

But part of me will sure be happy they are there. I’m certainly going to work on appreciating what I’ve got.

Have a great week friends. 

Convictions from kid-fights.

Now, when I don’t like something I typically grouch about it. So this isn’t a sermon. I ain’t no preacher yo.
Last night my girls were griping and fighting about doing the easy tasks I asked them to do. (think, set out paper napkins and pick up trash they just threw on the floor)
Tired, with a headache and having enough of the squealing, fighting, and whining I bellowed (you know, like the graceful southern belle I am) at them 
“STOP IT RIGHT NOW AND GO TO YOUR ROOMS AND-DON’T-COME-OUT-UNTIL-YOU-CAN-BE-NICE”
Left to finish shredding the crockpot pork for BBQ sandwiches in relative quiet – Bible verses I memorized (which I only memorized because I was bribed with candy) in a church program popped into my head…made more relevant since these days I am both the one asking people to do things, AND taking “orders” at work.
This one from Phillipians 2, verses 14-16 (NIV version)
Do everything without grumbling or arguing, so that you may become blameless and pure, “children of God without fault in a warped and crooked generation.” Then you will shine among them like stars in the sky as you hold firmly to the word of life. And then I will be able to boast on the day of Christ that I did not run or labor in vain.
Grumbling and arguing. Just like my ratbabies I tend towards that. Oops. Might ought to try to do better there.
And this one from Colossians 3:23 (Again, NIV)
Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters.
Well. Lunch break is about over. I need to adjust my attitude and get back to work. Pray for me please. It’s going to be a hard thing to work on.
HAPPY WEEKEND FRIENDS!!

Only moderately crazy.

Today I felt crazy. Even crazier than normal.

For the past 4-5 days Claire has been belligerent. 

Every single thing I have asked her has gone like this.

Me- “Claire, would you rather take your frog (toy) to your room or put it on the shelf?” (Trying to trick her into thinking she had a choice)

Claire- “No! I will not do EITHER.” Foot stomp. Pint sized dictator head tossed back squint-eyed-glare with defiantly crossed arms. 

Me- “Claire. I need you to choose a place to put away your frog or I will put it in my room until you can earn it back”

Claire- *falls dramatically on the floor, screaming, crying and kicking…Looking up just often enough to see if I am looking*

I try to not be looking. 

After much cajoling, threats, discipline and bribing she will finally do what we set out for….An hour before.

Then she frolics off and the happy place of Claire-Land is all games and giggles.

Anytime anyone else (anyone on the face of the earth but ME) asks her to do something, she smiles and pleasantly complies. 

Either something is wrong with this formerly delightful child, or she is trying her derndest (successfully) to drive me batty. 

Maybe it’s her ears. She had an ear infection a couple weeks ago and finished her antibiotics recently. 

I kind of hope for my sanity, that it is her ears. (I know. That probably makes me a horrible person.)

At the Pediatrician today, the nurse was going through the usual.

So what brings you in today? “I think Claire has an ear infection”

Any Cough? “No”

Fever? “No”

Runny Nose? “No”

Has she been complaining about ear pain or  has she been tugging at her ears? “No. Actually she tells me they don’t hurt when I ask.”

I realized then what an hypochondriac-parent I am sounding like. 

Claire is giggling to herself, looking exceptionally healthy and puttering about the room, doing her best to touch every germ-laden surface….No doubt we will be back here soon. Gosh I hate germs. 

“So, I realize she is three, and some of this is normal threenager behavior…But she has been belligerent. And she refuses to listen. And the whining…”

I trailed off, realizing how I sound. 

The nurse, kind as always smiled. 

“I just want to know if this is behavioral or if something is wrong physically so I know how to address it”

There. That sounded less emotional. Much more like  something a sane, level headed logical parent would say. Feeling more confident, I grabbed Claire. She pinched my nose HARD and yelled “HONK”….And went limp laughing.

The nurse smirked. “Oh I know. I’ve got three boys. If you are hard on them and they are sick, the mom guilt is bad”

I agreed. Mom guilt is the worst.

Turned out after the Doctors inspection, kid DOES have another ear infection. We got a prescription which will hopefully will take care of it.

Some ibuprofen and Claire’s mood was much improved this afternoon. Poor kid has been in pain. I’m glad I wasn’t hard on her. She’s tough, and has a pretty high pain tolerance- it will take a lot to completely throw her off her game.

As you can see, the little Daredevil was bound-and-determined to make it down the driveway first. Caroline wasn’t so interested in racing.

I am slowly learning that maybe you should still do what you think is the right thing, even if you look and sound like a lunatic. (Which for me is most the time anyway) 

Anyway. Have a great rest of your week friends, I hope you get some of this beautiful sunshine we did here.

I’m spring-cleaning it this week. I am doing my best to stay home and let the girls (and myself) relax and finish up things we’ve started and MAYBE EVEN CLEAN. (Don’t hold your breath on that one though!)

I scrounged these old come crates from an old milking shed on the farm a while back. They were gross and dirty. 

I scrubbed them with hot soapy water then forgot about them

I found them again yesterday (they were storing my art supplies) and scrubbed them again with hot bleach water and set them out to dry. Because ya gotta be clean in the kitchen. I figured it would mess up the paint, but it seemed to brighten it. That was a nice surprise. 

I’m going to start with the end. Here is what I ended up with. (Yay)

Yes, I know they are offset. I did that on purpose… because (as Claire says) “Because I wanted to”. I also did it by myself because I’m betting my organized and responsible husband would encourage me to make them even had I waited for him to assist me. (I wonder why my kids are so strong-willed)

I needed a thingy to do it. But so couldn’t describe it to Lynn suffiently for him to go get it for me. So Caroline and I went to wander a store to find it yesterday.

It’s like a drill-screwdriver-extender-thats-also-magnetic
See? Magnetic magic. It sticks!
And then you slide the attached tube-thing down over the screw to steady it while you put it in the wall. Magical.

I pre-drilled holes in the crates because I was afraid they would split being so old. I also used washers so it would (maybe) better support the weight. 

I found the studs by seeing where the wood paneling was nailed to them. (Highly scientific method)

I put in one screw/washer to attach it to the wall, then leveled the top then put in the rest of the screws. Notice the crate on the left is a little crooked. It’s just the way it warped over time and I couldn’t pull it straight. I’m sure there is a way to fix that, I just didn’t want to fool with it and I like it how it is.


At any rate. I’m pleased with how they turned out. And my spices were in two drawers, which are now freed up for other stuff/junk.

Have a great week friends.

A violent tragedy has occured.

We’ve cleaned up the crime scene and have a prime suspect in custody.

A confession is expected soon.

Summertime Shopping (same drama, different day)

We went to town.

Here’s how it went….

We stopped at the Dollar store, and the kids were pretty good, and I was all “Good Mom” and keeping them engaged and entertained.

Then we ran another errand and they were whiny but quit when I gave them a snack and a drink.

At the Farmers Market they were tolerable, but deteriorating quickly, and my patience was waning.

Then the devil-grocery-store.

Had I thought it through, I would have put Claire in the baby- carrier to restrain her (http://angelpack.com/max-toddler-angelpack/ – that’s what we have and I LOVE it…I bought it secondhand but it would have been worth it to buy it new) and buckled Caroline in the buggy, when I do that the worst that can happen is they complain some. But it is HOT today, and I slept crooked and my back is hurting a little and I didn’t even think of it. GAHHH.

This video is actually the part of the grocery store trip where they were being less wild. There wasn’t any audible music and Caroline was dancing, and Claire was pretending to be a frog on the floor and yelling “RIBBIT, RIBBIT”.

Pardon my annoying-on-video voice.

 

 

While I picked out some peaches, they leaned up against a freestanding display on wheels and it rolled away and they fell down. They looked at each other and grinned and leapt up, put their hands on it and shoved it… almost into a nice looking older lady’s shopping cart. I apologized, scolded them and they apologized as well.

Then while I was trying to find vanilla wafers to make banana pudding for dinner, Claire tried to climb a shelf of diapers, and Caroline spun in circles until she fell into a display of Pringles and knocked them down. Claire scooped up a can and threw it at her sisters head where it made solid contact. I swatted Claire’s bottom, and then I had a mess of pringles cans to pick up and two squalling kids. Fun times.

I promise I try to maintain some measure of control over my children, but there is some devilment that overpowers logic and all I have ever taught them at the grocery store.

By the end of the trip I had strapped Claire into the buggy seat and regained a tiny bit of control. So that’s a positive.

We came home and unloaded the car, had lunch and they played in the wading pool.

I might have put on my swimsuit and sat in it with them…but a picture of it doesn’t exist, so that means it didn’t happen, right? ha.

 

It’s hot out there. Perfect afternoon for popsicles and vigorous outdoor activities to wear out the wild ratbabies.

 

 

 

Caroline Drama

Caroline has been a handful tonight.

After sloppy joes tonight (try this recipe- http://thepioneerwoman.com/cooking/sloppy-joes/)
Lynn had to leave to go to a Farm Bureau meeting. Claire was leisurely finishing her dinner and Caroline was running, turning flips on the floor, and trying to take the drawer pulls off the the antique buffet.

I called her over to me, and while petting her hair I asked her “Why are you so wild? What’s got into you?”

She rolled her eyes around in circles. Sigh. “Mama, that’s just the world we live in today”

Finally Claire was finished and I tried to take a quick bath while supervising the girls who were sprinting up and down the hall yelling at the top of their lungs.

Caroline stopped. Came and stood in front of the bathtub and tossed her hair. “I need your computer now” (by computer she means tablet)

I said “No.”

Lord have mercy.

The kid has been using a sight word app on my tablet to work on her sight words. She’s recently decided she wants to read.

Kicking, screaming, wailing, sniveling, I asked her to go to her room until she could quit the fit.

Finally, she came back to find me. Mad because I did not let her play her sight word game.

“If you don’t give the the computer right now I’m never going to be able to read. Not even when I’m a grown-up. I WON’T EVEN BE ABLE TO READ TO MY OWN CHILDREN! WHY ARE YOU BEING MEAN TO MY CHILDREN????” (Hair toss, foot stomp)

To my credit, I was able to hold it together and not laugh. This ratbaby is a strong willed dramatic thing!

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Grumpy grouch

Poor Lynn got back home in the middle of the drama and settled down his oldest daughter.

Y’all pray for me!

Gee. Teenage years should be fun.

Hay Season

It’s hay time on the farm. Typically they bale hay (which is a feed source for the cattle in the winter when the grass is dormant) twice, maybe three times a year if weather conditions are favorable. They do round bales meant for cattle which are easier to move with equipment and only a few square bales for my horses because those are more labor intensive.

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Pic from Lynn at work

Since most farm work is seasonal, and like many farm related chores dependent on the weather – hay time means many things to our family.

It means long days for Lynn – who comes home covered in dust and equipment grease.

It means it is hot and muggy. And the girls get to play in the wading pool or sprinkler in the afternoons.

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Caroline is hanging the freshly laundered swimsuits out to dry, since the dryer makes the elastic brittle.

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It means we have FINALLY had a chance to get the garden worked and planted.

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It means the pop-up thunderstorms sometimes end the farming day, which frusterate Lynn but thrill me since sometimes he can come home before 7pm.

It means my work schedule has slowed down a bit and I’m almost down to “regular” work hours… I’m planning and preparing for summer horse shows, beef shows, the late summer awards banquet.
The work assignment I dread most all year happens this time of year, a week away from my family at 4-H camp. I don’t dislike camp itself and I think it is a fantastic opportunity to for the young people I am in charge of for the week.
My stomach churns when I think about spending a week 2.5 hours away from my girls who need their Mama especially at bedtime, and my Type 1 diabetic husband who is prone to low blood sugar at night. It just feels wrong to leave them.
BUT, my job is steady and provides good health insurance coverage for the family. And I enjoy what I do…It’s just the being away that bothers me.

Real official hay-season summertime is here. We’ve finished out first watermelon and the girls eat popcicles in their swimsuits. Sometimes we all pile in the tractor and ride with Lynn while he’s working for some family time.

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It’s a long hour, hot and sweaty, hard work rhythm of life – but it’s our life and for that I’m thankful.

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