Baby Shower

Like the best one ever.

I know my sister-in-law had a great one that she really enjoyed, but I hate baby showers.

When first asked if I wanted one I flatly refused. The last thing I want, ever, is to have to sit there and have people look at me especially when I am the size of an elephant. I hate being the center of attention.

My party planning friend finally relented and said we could leave the kids with a sitter and go to town for coffee. That sounded good to me. As stay at home moms week days are the easiest time to get away. I asked about inviting another friend and was told that she wanted to come but couldn’t get away.

We met and dropped the kids off then stopped for gas. Who should come walking out of the station but the friend who “couldn’t get away”. What a great surprise, just as big as the surprises still to come.

We got to town and parked in front of the coffee place. I got out and waited for them to turn and cross the street. They started walking the other direction. Looking up at the buildings in front of us I realized they were heading for the new nail place. I had never been in a place like that in my life. I’m not exactly a girly girl. The building is old and beautiful, the ladies working there tiny, skinny and very non english speaking. They asked, I think, if we wanted manicures or pedicures. Thinking of my old married lady legs I said manicure. They talked me into a pedicure so we could relax in the massage chairs and gossip while we indulged in the luxury of having our feet worked over.

Giggling nervously, on my behalf at least, we settled into the chairs. The chair controls took a bit of figuring out but once they got going it was an incredible massage. I thought I would either fall asleep or go into labor. Our feet soaked in a bubbling bath between being worked on. There were three ladies working there. One spent the entire time we were there doing the nails on a very constructed (Frankenstein like) looking college girl. The girls hair was carefully dyed very black, her skin tanned a dark leathery brown, cleanly shaven legs and apparently long well decorated finger nails. I so don’t get that standard of beauty. The other two ladies took turns on us.

Us old married ladies who stick to a much more natural beauty standard sat laughing about  unshaven legs, talking about our kids and telling labor horror stories. We were treated to an education in popular music via the giant TV playing videos on one wall. I didn’t realize I was so out of touch. Taylor Swifts non country music is even more vile than her country stuff had become and we all stared at each other in shock and horror during the hip hop song that was nothing but cussing. Most of the videos made me glad we don’t have cable. We did discus with great fascination the wonders of having three whole channels, how there is always something to watch. Got to love this life.

The instigator of our outing got a very tiny and skinny woman to do her feet. She got yelled at every time she moved and was ordered to shut her massage chair off because it was causing her feet to vibrate. She got no massage and little foot filing. She really got shorted.

The other lady was much nicer and more thorough. We got leg massages clear to the knee, hot towels, the works it was awesome. My toes are now more beautiful than they have ever been in my life. I want desperately to wear sandals, in February.

Finished there we headed across the street to the coffee place where we feasted on soup and salad and sandwiches and a huge terribly unhealthy but ridiculously delicious coffee. We enjoyed a morning away from the children that our lives revolve around. Of course we spent that morning talking about our children but we were actually able to finish sentences without being interrupted by said children. We ate our food without having to get up and take anyone to the potty or share food. I forgot what life was like before children. I don’t miss it but a childless morning once in a while is heavenly.

Thanks Heather and Erica, loved it!

Category: Family  4 Comments

Very Pregnant

I have finally reached that point.

Up until now I have been feeling pretty good. When people ask how I’m feeling I have mostly been confused as to why they were asking. I last got on a horse after Christmas sometime, it was all I could do not to go for a real ride. With the nice weather it’s hard not to grab Coyote and hop on. I declared after last weekend that I was done feeding. Bouncing across the rutted ground was getting to be a little much. My family had been (lovingly) harping on me to quit for quite a while now. Other than being a bit sore by the time we finished and completely exhausted when it required getting up at five thirty, that extra half hours sleep is an extra half hours sleep it’s important, I wasn’t ready to quit yet. I am finally ready, really ready.

The child has been enjoying going to feed still with her father on weekends. Especially when Jack and Kayle come along. During the week we are not waking her up at five thirty, it’s just to early for a small child.

I am still not waddling. Except maybe in the evenings when I am just plain tired. I’ve decided it’s like collection in a horse, just need to be gathered and working from behind. When I hollow out and carry the weight on the front end, along comes the waddle.

In the evenings when we have a chance to sit and do nothing for a bit this creature in my stomach decides to do acrobatics. Tonight, as we watched God’s Not Dead, good movie by the way, I swear he was trying to crawl out my belly button again. I know some women say they like being pregnant but surely even they can’t mean that they like these last few weeks? As miserable as this is getting I am not looking forward to days spent in the hospital and months of waiting for my stomach to grow back together with two small children to watch. It’s going to be nice to have my mom out to help for the first bit, after that I hope it’s not too bad like my husband remembers instead of horrible and awful like I remember.

My memories pf the last time could be tainted by the weeks prior spent in a hospital hours from home and afterwards having a child still there in the NICU, the whole thing was a bit stressful. Mostly I just get so incredibly whiny about the whole pregnant thing. I will be thrilled once we have him and I can ride again and walk and sit and sleep comfortably. Especially once he starts sleeping through the night and I get my first full nights sleep in what by then will probably be a good year. Oh my, there I go being really whiny again. Of course I am writing this at nearly midnight, because I can’t sleep, because everything hurts and he is digging frantically at my belly button.

So anyway.

We have been enjoying the February thaw. All that melt meant lots of mud though. The Goblin Child has been loving jumping in muddy puddles (too much Peppa Pig I think). The rest of us have been taking turns getting vehicles stuck. I think I have done it the most, twice, not sure who wins for most impressive. They were all pretty good. Twice the feed truck required a large tractor to pull it out as it sat buried to the axles. Fully loaded it’s more than the payloader has traction to get out. The other time I stopped fighting it immediately and was in a good spot to pull out easily. When the payloader got stuck it took another payloader, don’t think anything bigger would’ve fit through the gate, two broken chains and a tow rope to finally set it free. I think everyone is glad it’s drying up a little.

Supposed to be cold next week with many chances of snow. Hopefully the dry spell will hold or the child will. We planned carefully for February because usually it’s a slow time with calves sold already and calving and most importantly farming not started yet. I must admit we should have thought more about the weather especially since our other reasons are not panning out this year. The calves are consigned at least. For the day I get home from the hospital. Oh well, sounds like it’s a long standing family tradition.

 

Happy Birthday

Good luck with that. Sorry your birthday had to fall in the middle of such a rotten week. Or would any week containing the change to the big four oh be at least a little rotten?

We treasure your birthday even if you don’t, it means that we have you. Without that life just wouldn’t be the same. Or be at all for one of us. We want to make it as good as possible, even if our “help” sometimes makes it worse instead of better. We were so excited to see you for lunch today, and every day for that matter, as soon as we pulled into the parking lot she started going on about seeing your blazer. Someone so little doesn’t know yet about little things like gravity.

Being greeted at the door by a bleeding screaming child after she has crashed face first into the cement unable to catch herself at all because her hands are buried in her pockets is no kind of a birthday present. Wish we had gotten you something better. Can’t wait for you to get home tonight. It’s the end of the week you can catch up on a little bit of sleep tomorrow I hope. Things always look better after some rest. We will have a nice family supper and sit and do nothing for a while that’s always nice.

In the mean time and on the bright side no babies yet. I was pulling for today so you both could share a birthday.

Category: Family, Farming  3 Comments

Good Manners at Least

I have had the latest Maroon 5 song stuck in my head a lot lately.

The other night cooking supper I had it playing upstairs while we all worked in the kitchen. I may have played it more than once. As we sat down at the table The Goblin Child started singing “Yes please” over and over again along with the song. We need to start paying close attention to the music we play. But at least this is teaching her good manners.

Category: Family  2 Comments

A Little Color Sense People

We went up to the stock show last weekend. A good sweet and dear friend offered to keep The Goblin Child for us All Day. It was awesome. Like a date, or maybe it just was a date. They managed to get her to sit mostly still through church with them and took she took the child to her in-laws house for supper. All kinds of fun things and she got to play with her other favorite boy all day. Sorry Jack you aren’t her only love.

It snowed the day before but the roads were getting better on the way up. We got there just in time for lunch. At HuHots, I don’t think we have any longer a drive to get to a HuHots than the rest of my family, so much for the benefits of living in a big city. And ours had clams and calamari. My only regret was that I couldn’t eat any more.

We stopped at Manards and looked for a light for the nursery. Found one but not in stock. Oh well that’s what Amazon is for.

And then for the whole reason for going up, we went to the fair grounds and watched some of the ranch horse competition. Of course we got there just as they broke for lunch. Oh well. We looked at the big trailers with living quarters. My non-horsey husband was justifiably horrified. I’m horrified and I’m used to the behemoths. The excess is ridicules. I fondled all the beautiful tack ohhing and aweing over the butter soft leather. Scowling about all the nasty roping type bits that seem to be the equivalent of putting barb wire in a horses mouth. Seriously who needs to have chain and all the sharp twists on a mouth piece to control their horse and why does the number and severity of these bits seem to be increasing all the time?

Then we sat down and waited. My farmer husband found something for him when the tractor, a cute little case, pulled into work the arena. And work the arena. And work the arena, until the lady waiting patiently to give out awards was able to catch his attention and tell him to stop, please.

Finally the next class up was the novice. I was sorry to miss all the exciting fence work of the more advanced classes but the novice has excitement all its own. Most of the rides were excelent with well train nicely ridden horses that all just needed some polish and experience. A couple needed lots more work. One girl who handled it nicely and didn’t get dumped was run away with out the open gate. She didn’t loose her temper and brought the young horse back patiently schooling him through the pattern.

Another lady on a fully grown Palomino who was very hot and screaming desperately the whole time also managed not to fall off as he spooked and shied and really tried to dump her the whole way through.

Only one guy gave a good example of the cow work. I was a bit disappointed even in his. I wanted to point to these people doing fence work, fast and exhilarating galloping down the long side to turn the cow on a dime with dirt flying and tell my doubting husband to look, I used to do that. From what he saw I don’t think he quite was able to appreciate.

We went to the stock show proper and looked around, we got gas, looked at the book store and ate some more. Olive Garden this time. Then missing the child and quite ready for bed we headed home.

The next day looking through one of the horse magzines we had picked up I came across and add for Haythorn’s horse sale. They had been up there and I knew them from way back when, so I paused to look at it.

In the middle of the page was a young black horse. He caught my eye because of shear ugliness, a mile down hill, ugly head, I know I always say how completely unimportant it is but this really caught my eye. He really just did not appeal to me. I read his write up to discover that he was still a stud and my horror increased. We can maybe credit some of the down hill and ugly to being so young, a coming two year old, but shouldn’t only the best of the best be bred? Not just anything with the required parts? That is pretty common though so not too surprising. The part that bothered me was where it said that he would throw colorful offspring because, and I quote “his mother is blue roan and his father palomino.”

Four-Quail-23-lg

This young stud is by the Checkers Daughter we have by the mare Miss Blue Quail, that was in the embryo program at the 6666’s. If you keep him a stallion you should get lots of color, his mother is blue roan and his father palomino. Many opportunities with the Driftwood bloodlines.
15.1 Hands 1250 lbs.

Wait a minute, Seriously people? Haythorns are big time, they have won the AQHA remuda of the year in the past they spend a fortune on horses and stud fees and advertising and they have some really nice horses.  And still they don’t, or the person doing their advertising doesn’t, have the most basic grasp of genetics? That is what I have, the most basic of understandings, and it stuck out at me like a sore thumb. I double checked just to make sure I had my facts straight and yes I do. This BLACK stud has a possibility of throwing color, we assume they mean roan and palomino, because that is the color of his parents according to them.

The only problem is, can you guess? Do you know the answer? I should wait till tomorrow to say. I know/hope my mom has it already.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Answer:

Both of those are dominant genes. They can not be covered by another base color. In order to pass on they must first be present and if they are present we will be able to see them.

Grey could cover it. If he were much older and already greyed out it could mask the other color, but he is not grey. He is black.

If he is really a smokey black he could be carrying one dilute, or cream, gene making it possible that he could throw palomino or buckskin and the like. He looks slightly faded, we will give him this as his only possibility of throwing color, other than being bred to a colorful mare, but it’s a long shot as they strongly believe him to be black. Of course they have already given us reason to doubt them in this.

He is definitely not a roan so that is not happening. He is not palomino and not a buckskin. This is not the first big time breeder I have known who lacks a basic understanding of color. While it is not imperative in a breeding operation, I suppose, it does seem like a good idea to know what you’re talking about.

Mostly I enjoyed finding this little error in an area that I love and am fascinated by on behalf of such a big time breeder. It made my day.

Category: Horses  5 Comments

Sneaky Little Bugger

A few days ago The Goblin Child surprised me by saying that whatever she was eating was Delicious. She said it quite a few times. I told her father and tried to get her to repeat it but she refused.

Yesterday we were graining the horses and she demanded some for her too. I gave her a handful thinking she wanted to check it out or play with it. She surprised me by taking a bite. As she chewed and coughed and tried to get the oats down I asked her if it was yummy. There may have been some sarcasm involved. She looked up at me and declared it to be delicious. I stared at her open mouthed in shock.

That afternoon she did it again while eating her snack.

That night at supper I asked if it was yummy. She nodded mutely. Her father said his food was delicious and asked how hers was. She nodded mutely. I asked her to please say delicious. She stared at me with mouth clinched tight her expression insisting that she had never heard of that word in her life much less thought to say such a thing.

Really, I swear, when no one is here to hear it she proclaims all her food to be delicious. It’s the cutest thing ever. No one is ever going to believe me.

Category: Family  One Comment

All my Fault

Helping

Helping

Well part of it. I set the alarm on my phone, checked it carefully to make sure it was on, then rebooted. The reboot shut the alarm off.

On the bright side we both actually slept all night! That hasn’t happened in weeks. The whole pregnant thing makes my hips hurt and my shoulders and my belly and blesses me with general insomnia, now when I might otherwise have a chance to sleep where later there will be no hope. I have heard that many of the issues with pregnancy rub off on the husband and it seems to be the case here too. We both toss and turn all night only to fall asleep just before that five thirty alarm sounds.

But I that is not the point of this story.

Let me start over. I forgot to set the alarm. The phone rang at six waking us from a deep and thoroughly enjoyed sleep. Clint was here to feed, and early of course since we were late. He was not just calling to see where his help was. Soon I heard my sleepy husband waken fully as he responded. His voice was muffled by the walls but I thought I heard the word fire. Then there was lots of cussing.

He came back and began throwing on clothes muttering about what else could possibly go wrong, I hated to mention that the day had barely began so probably lots. As he dressed he told me that the payloader was on fire. I was of course rushing to get dressed too. I didn’t anticipate being of any help of course but if a payloader is on fire I want to see. As he put in his contacts Clint drove by in the payloader, bringing it up to the shop where there is a hydrant and an unfrozen hose. As he passed I could see orange flames flickering happily from behind the radiator on the back.

He dashed out the door and I followed behind or tried. As I pulled my boots on I heard a tiny voice, much like Cindy Lou Who, coming from the kitchen saying “Hi mama”.

So much for getting to see what was going on. Someone really does have to watch the child. She got dressed in record time and together we rushed out to see the excitement. Only there was none. The guys were standing around the back of the payloader over a puddle of water poking around at its guts. No flames, no destruction, no anything, but there was Jack. That was very exciting. While the child drug Jack off to play with I looked in amazement at the mostly undamaged maybe even still running payloader (I really can’t remember everything). Those things are incredible.  I remember the time this same payloader had picked up a whole car fully engulfed in flames and nonchalantly carried out to where it could finish burning without causing any damage. It had survived that unscathed also.

Apparently Clint had gotten there ready to feed and found that he was the only one to do so. He started the payloader to let it warm up and then started the feed truck while waiting and before calling to see where everybody was. He walked around and put Jack in the passenger side then back around towards the the drivers side. Which is when he saw the flames. He looked for water or dirt or a fire extinguisher anything. Finding nothing he had called.

I understand there may have been some shock and horror when the instructions he received were to get into the burning vehicle and drive it up to the shop. But he did with Jack running behind I think. By the time my rushing husband got out he had extinguished the flames and they began assessing the damage which thankfully seems to be little.

They had things to finish up so we got volunteered to feed. The four of us, Goblin Child, Jack, Husband and I, loaded on the four wheeler and went to get the other payloader and the still running feed truck. The children rode with me as we fed calves and loaded feed for the cows. Before even the first dump of silage my worn and weary husband pulled along side us to talk. Apparently something else had gone wrong. The pin had broke in the grapple and it is not possible to load anything without it. They were going to have to get it fixed before we could finish feeding. He should not have asked such a leading question if he didn’t want it answered.

It was quick work to get it fixed especially with Clint there. We finished the feeding. Jack noticed that I let The Goblin Child turn the PTO on and off and he wanted to try too. By then she was wanting to help shift so there was lots of help. I would never say too much help but it did take a little longer to finish loading.

As seems to be the usual we wound up with the absolute best of the worst case scenario. If Clint hadn’t brought Jack along today he may not have noticed the fire and gone on to feed with it burning happily in the Quonset, with all the equipment. He got it extinguished quickly and the main damage seems to be to a battery. All in all God is good.

Kidnapping

IMG_20150126_105139_940The weather turned cold again. It is January after all but the warm weather was nice while it lasted.

We fed the cattle this morning as usual and when we finished the neighbor who has been helping feed showed up on his day off to help get more work done. Much to the child’s delight out of the pick up climbed his boy too. She marched up to him and proclaimed him to be Jack. And yes, yes he is.

She then proceeded to follow him every where. As their fathers discussed the work they were preparing to embark upon she demanded her fathers hand so she could offer it to Jack to hold. He wasn’t interested, strangely. He was very nice about it though, very nice to her all around. She demanded Jacks hand and he let her hold it as she led him where ever she wanted.

They, with me trailing behind, followed the guys as they got the battery charger on a tractor and wandered back towards the house to get a pickup. She began demanding “Jack home, Jack home too” as she drug him that direction by his finger.

It is pretty cold this morning. The wind that came up is damp and brisk. The guys walked with shoulders hunched and hands in pockets. I think Jack was happy to be diverted indoors. His dad commented as they headed off that we ought to be a bit worried about her and as she sits on the floor playing with the boy that she kidnapped I think he might be right.

Category: Family, Farming  2 Comments

Developmental Growth

It’s amazing how it just happens one day with no warning. Not gradually, although I suppose it does it’s just not as noticeable when it’s slower.

The Goblin Child woke up Monday, I think it was Monday, and started using full sentences. I wanted to make a note of it since this is  also her/their baby book and general memoir. We are always fascinated by the moon and sun and planes. As we took advantage of the warm weather to play outside on the straw bales we heard a plane flying low. Looking around until I spotted it over the pasture I pointed it out to her. She looked until she found it then gleefully exclaimed “There it is!”.

That has become her mantra. Every time we lost it only to spot it again she would joyously proclaim it. Going into town to see her father for lunch we found the crescent moon playing peekaboo through the buildings. She grabbed her father by the hand and drug him to where it was visible to tell him that “There it is!”.

When I left Monday night for bible study she clung to my neck asking “I come too?” until her loving father offered  the temptation of playing on the computer. She thought about it and decided that that would be fun too and dove into his arms instead of mine.

This is not an example of brilliant speaking but she was being so cute and wanted to talk to her father so bad. And I never meant to do anything with it so didn’t even try to get it so it would be upright. Sorry.

On another note, we have mostly finished the nursery. Not that we will be using  it for quite a few months to come but apparently the nesting instinct is kicking in and I really had to have it finished so I could start organizing. The room is small but looking so good right now all crisp and clean, no mess or clutter. That will change soon I know.

The finished nursery also means that we got The Goblin Child’s new bed put in her room. She was very excited by it, jumping up and down on it and scampering over the foot-board. Fortunately she was as willing to sleep in it as play.

It has been a long busy couple of weeks for us. The father-in-law had shoulder surgery two? weeks ago, funny how hard it is to remember. My hard working, sleep deprived husband has been getting up bright and early to get the cattle fed before he has to be at work at his other/real job. A neighbor has been driving clear over to help feed every morning, weekdays at least. It’s a good ten mile drive on the dirt and I am amazed the he is able and willing to do it before he has to go to work at his real job.

On weekends we feed as a family. The child sometimes chooses to ride with her father in the pay-loader. It’s so much fun to watch her staring intently out the window as they go past. She looks so serious, I suppose staying upright takes lots of concentration. Sometimes she rides with me in the feed truck. She colors in her notebook and turns the PTO on and off for me. One time she spent the morning helping me shift. It took awhile but she could figure out the R and D and could almost do it herself.

This week the neighbor was gone for a couple of days and instead of inconveniencing anymore friends I said that I would do it. With the small child to think of these very early hours are difficult for everybody. So we woke up even earlier, dressing a small child can take more time than would seem possible, and woke The Goblin Child at hours we usually work hard to convince her to sleep through and went to feed cattle. She enjoyed looking at the stars and I enjoyed trying to point out the sunrise. Its getting earlier! Not sure she found it as interesting as the moon, which we looked for every morning but it was “gone”.  She’s a trooper she took the disturbances to her routine very well, better than me I think. This morning I am enjoying having slept in, another fifteen minutes, but at this point every minute counts.

I am very impressed that the father-in-law was able to find someone to come do his feeding for him. I would never have dreamed of asking such big favors from anyone. I guess it doesn’t bother some people to ask for big favors the way it would me, his willingness to ask and ability to find willing subjects never ceases to amaze me.

Category: Family, Farming  One Comment

Inappropriate

We met some friends for lunch after church Sunday. Sitting there in the very middle of Taco John’s we laughed and talked and discussed things we probably should not, so loudly and surrounded by people.

With our child bouncing between her doting father and I on the bench we talked about the importance of boundaries and our horror of badly behaved children.

The difficulties of being an old mom surrounded by beautiful, perky, overly energetic collage kids.

Voices raised to be heard over squeals and giggles from a tickle war between two children we discussed dog breeding and semen collection methods for dogs in general, Bull Dogs in particular. Gross. The importance of tying up the female dogs not just the males during heat and general bad behavior of female animals.

We went through napkins by the ton as our child happily drank her salsa and licked the last drop of cheese from the container. So much for pretty dresses. I notice I can’t find anything to say about their well behaved and quiet children. I guess that’s not reason enough to stop speaking to them although it would be more fun if they misbehaved too.

All this as we sat with our small children, fresh from church, in the middle of a restaurant crowded with people we know. I love being that group. The crass vulgar crowd people are shocked and horrified by and try to avoid.

 

Category: Dogs, Family  One Comment