Piece of junk

It’s no surprise to anyone who knows me that I am terrible with machines. Copy machines, lawn mowers, all weedeaters… whatever. They just quit working when I come around.

It’s not my fault! I swear! Machines just die when I come close. I am innocent of any wrongdoing. It must be my elecromagnetic field or something. That’s a real thing, right?

Needless to mention, if there is an expensive thing to drive…I don’t get to drive it.

The absolute worst is the terrible old 4-wheeler. On a good day it splutters and jerks with the farmers. With me it’s much worse.

Today I was delivering lunches and rather than good old fashioned healthy walking, my well meaning but terribly wrong husband insisted I take the piece-of-junk … I mean 4-wheeler. It never, never, never goes well when I take this 4-wheeler.

Lunchtime!

I don’t know why I didn’t argue.

I get to the bottom of the hill to drop off a lunch and BAM it jerks to a stop while simultaneously dying.

I tried, and tried and tried to restart it. NOTHING. It’s much easier to walk up a hill than push a broke down junk heap up.

I so wish I’d walked.

My father-in-law came over, punched the same starter button I had been working on what seemed like forever and the wretched, evil thing sprang to life.

It makes me grouchy to have to be rescued. Even worse when it makes me seem inept.

Off I went, halfway up the steepest hill and BAM the thing jerked to a dead stop again….but THIS TIME it started furiously rolling backwards. Oh fun.

I squeezed the hand brakes as hard as my hands would let me. Nothing.

Oh yeah, that’s right. This glorious chariot has non-working brakes. Fabulous.

I was by this point picking up speed backwards down the hill.

So I cut the front wheels to the right as fast as I could.

After precariously leaning over to the left and almost tipping down the hill the awful scrap-worthy thing stopped.

Ugh. I wished I could just get off and leave it in the field. A HORSE would never do this to me. Neither would my feet. Definitely never driving this worthless trash again.

Despite being an office-working, nearing middle age, deadfully out of shape, mother of two I’m decently strong so I tried to push it up the hill. Big fat NOPE. I didn’t even move it in the direction I wanted to go.

Drat.

Wish I’d walked.

Finally, I got it started. I gave the rickety-old-bucket-of-rust heck and got back to the barn as fast as I could. The motor jerked and sputtered the entire time.

I silently dared it to die, like Arnold Swartzenagger I challenged it to “Go ahead, make my day”. I wished I could make it explode like on the movies so I’d never have to use it again. The farmers wouldn’t be thrilled with me about that though.

Lynn was walking my direction with a smirk on his face. HE KNEW. When I got closer to him, I could hear him chuckle.

Glad I could be of some entertainment at least. Must be boring driving the tractors in circles for hours spreading fertilizer.

Not that I’m ever asked to drive a tractor…I wonder why?!?

Next time? I’m walking. Or riding a horse. For sure I won’t be taking the 4-wheeler.

March 11th 2018

We helped Lynn feed cattle today. After all the rain it is muddy. So muddy.

Claire has established her interest in tractor driving. Sometimes she forgets where’s she’s going though and Lynn has to get it back on track.

At one point neither Lynn nor Claire had their hands on the steering wheel and panicking Caroline yanked the wheel screeching “nobody is driving the tractor!” The tractor jolted and bounced and Lynn steadied it.

Caroline is thrilled to get out and take net off the bales of hay. I’m pretty sure her goal is to get as muddy as possible – and she is very good at it.

She tried to climb the hay…but had to stop when it was time to feed it.

After that it was a good day for a very long Sunday afternoon nap, especially since we lost an hour of sleep due to daylight savings time.

Wild child

After work I enjoy being outside. The girls do too.

Current they are playing with dirt, worms, sticks and a dog.

And it’s chaos.

Lots of yelling and mentions of “worm poop”

Very unladylike.

Yet very appropriate.

I am happy to have girls that are girly and wear flower crowns and ball gowns and love glitter.

I am also happy to have girls that play with worms and get actual dirt under their gnawed off fingernails. They smell of dog every evening when they come in.

Both things are good, and today I’m thankful they are both.

Well, until I start doing that laundry with ground in stains!

Have a good week friends.

Pot-head

Due to snow in the forecast, school was cancelled Friday. No snow arrived, but schools were closed.

I took some leave from work and Caroline helped me clean the house. Claire opted to go to daycare which was open.

I asked Caroline to unload the dishwasher, and went to scrub down the bathroom.

From the next room I hear her laugh. She yelled “Guess what Mom?!”

Me “Whattttt?”

(Because at this point she had wanted me to check/praise her progress a minimum of 6 times already on the dish unloading. Which I had dutifully done. But my enthusiasm for praise was waning)

Caroline cackled “I’m a POT-HEAD”

She had my attention now. That’s not a phrase she should know.

I scurried into the kitchen and saw this…

Whew!

She was talking about an actual POT on her HEAD….not making a reference to drug culture.

The innocence of children.

Have a good week friends.

Sunshine, sticks and dead mice

After Caroline and I had a classier than usual evening at a friend’s party then the theater last night it was back to life as usual today.

After early church we went with Lynn to feed hay to and check the cattle, and then watch a truck come to load out soybeans.

It was beautiful, sunny and nearly 70. A welcome change after last week’s single digit temps.

Caroline enjoyed balancing on a downed tree while Lynn speared hay to feed.

And then the girls discovered a dead mouse that had just met it’s demise under a falling round bale of hay.

Of course they had to poke at it with sticks, because they are kids.

Kids do weird stuff.

Here is an example of a “farm gate”. This one separates the cattle from the hay so they don’t trample it down. I don’t like gates like this. They are a hassle to open, and a bigger hassle to shut.

Then we took unsuccessful turns trying to use this highly technical tool to break ice in a water trough in a currently unused pasture.

I need to buy the man a hatchet or something.

Then another farm gate. These broken gates make me bonkers.

While waiting for more hay to be loaded Claire found a stick and chased Caroline and I with it, while laughing like a maniac.

Then they struggled over who got to have the stick until it broke in half.

Claire did not give up willingly. I got tickled and couldn’t stop laughing and that made it harder to take it away.

Since she was whipping it around fiercely Lynn got involved and took it away and threw it over the fence. That made her pout.

She got over the pouting when she sat on and pretended to drive the old tractor hooked to the grain auger.

I found a robin’s egg while waiting for the soybean truck. A dispute ensued over who got to hold it. It ended when Claire tripped over a dirt clod and smashed it in her hand.

After the truck arrived I took the girls home to nap while Lynn kept on working.

So that’s our Sunday. Have a good week friends.

Sunday Bulletin

I occasionally, on Sunday mornings wonder if it is worth it.

Do the kids hear anything at all in church? Aren’t they too little?

Wouldn’t my time be better spent catching up on sleep so I can be kinder?

We brush hair, tell them to brush their teeth at least 6 times, and as the mean parents we are we insist on them wearing a jacket. Then I try to get myself dressed while settling kid arguments as I hurriedly slurp down my coffee.

It can seem like a lot of hassle. ESPECIALLY since we go to the “early” 8:30am service.

I don’t like mornings.

This morning Caroline sat with my father-in-law. I heard them giggle several times in the row behind me. I heard candy wrappers rustle. Once, during a prayer Caroline said “R!” I turned around and gave her the stink eye. To which she smiled sweetly and batted her eyes.

After service was over she showed me what they had been working on so furiously.

With Papaw’s help she spent the service taking notes on the bulletin.

It made me grin. She definitely had a lot of help with those words thanks to her partner-in-crime…but it appears she IS paying attention.

That makes getting ready Sunday mornings easier to manage.

Have a good week friends.

I thought I wanted boys

When we were thinking about children, I was confident we would have boys. I would be a better boy mom, right? Dirt is easier to deal with than drama. And then boys could help Lynn on the farm.

And so I had it decided.

Then we had girls. Pink, glittery, dramatic girls.

Strong minded, strong willed. Smart girls. Girls that put on a tutu to play in the mud. Girls that argue, then brawl, then are once again best friends. Girls that are wild, and loud and messy.

We have play tieras and dressy tieras. Dresses and overalls, barn boots and those plastic dress up heels that girls clomp through the house in.

They pick their noses and carry purses.

We put on our pajamas for movie nights and snuggle and eat unholy amounts of popcorn.

Ordinary things are emphasized. Church is an occasion, and one must dress for it. Holidays are somehow brighter. Shopping is exhausting…but fun. There are glimpses of how in a few years shopping with both girls will really be fun, and still be totally dramatic.

Two sweet girls love on me. Two emotionally needy kids need totally different things, and RIGHT NOW. Feet stomp, eyes roll. Compliments are given.

We have bows, rubber bands and headbands but never can find a hairbrush. We have 10 hairbrushes, so it’s a great mystery.

Accessories are selected for me. Eyebrows are raised in disaproval of my fashion that doesn’t meet their standards.

They love nail polish and makeup and feeling pretty. They love the accomplished feeling they get when they help feed cattle. They want to drive the tractor, but so far are terrible drivers.

We have long and deep talks about feelings. Too soon it will be talks about boys.

Life will never be the same for me and I am so glad for it.

My world needed a little magic. Thank God for girls.

Soft soled shoes

On Thanksgiving morning I had some time to help the girls with a craft. Their good friend Ms. Lisa from church gave them the kit one Sunday morning…and their slacker Mama is just getting around to helping them with it.

Cute little thing, isn’t it?

I used the glue gun and the girls put the pieces together. They did a great job, and giggled a lot doing it.

Over the course of the creative process…one of the shoes for the figures went missing.

Trying to appease my distraught children I made up a lie. “Girls. Back in the olden days Indians didn’t wear shoes” (my girls get emotional about ALL THINGS. So. Many. Feelings.)

Apparently they teach more in Kindergarten now than they did back in my day. Because Caroline was gravely offended by my story.

She raised an eyebrow and sternly said “Mama! The Indians often wore soft soled shoes called Moccasins! ESPECIALLY in cooler weather! It protected their feet from stones and other objects.

Claire widened her eyes and nodded seriously at me in agreement.

It struck me funny…and once I quit laughing we all agreed since these particular indigenous folk would stay inside the house they could go barefoot.

Y’all pray for me!

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