It’s homecoming week. All week the children will dress up to fit various themes. The first was Athletes or nerds. I wanted them both to go with the nerd theme. The Goblin Child was not interested. We did our best to find an athlete costume. I couldn’t find my high school jersey and decided that horse riding counts as a sport thus horse people count as athletes. I pulled out cowgirl clothes.
Still clinging to my desire to send her as a nerd I thought of my clicker tucked away with the rest of my tack. If I sent that with her she could be the nerdiest of all horse people, a clicker trainer!
8 had no opinions. He happily let me dress him as a nerd. A darling one at that! I only have pictures of him, and him with his class. The Goblin Child just looked like she normally does.
It all started with the fighting. Constant bickering. I ordered them both outside. The Goblin Child complied. Mad. Slamming her way out the door. With both hands she emphatically shoved the door open. Hard.
Glass tinkled to the ground she stepped back staring at her hands in horror. I started to scream. She started to scream. I stopped and checked for blood. There was some. Nothing gushing though. 8 was quite upset by the whole thing. He was worried about her and near tears. He repeated over and over “I don’t know about this. This is bad, I don’t know about this. Lala’s going to be mad. I don’t know about this” He was cute but I was trying to deal with a screaming T.G.C. who was screaming that Lala was going to kill her. I considered the possibility that she might be right as I assured her that he wouldn’t. I thought back to putting my hand through the window in the back porch door and that my loving father had yelled at me. Now I understood why.
Taking her into the bathroom we washed up the blood. What little there was. And got her covered in band aids. I had to get a picture. The scrapes were little. She wasn’t really hurt. I worried the small injuries would put a stop to our plans to go to the lake after lunch. She sat around and moaned about how bad they hurt. She whined that it stung and look how much skin this one had taken off! By lunch she had quieted and we made it to the lake afterwards.
There they played and swam and mostly forgot about the injury. Until they were home and in the tub. Apparently there are salts in a bath bomb. It hurt again. Out of the tub they forgot about how much fun they had had and that they briefly liked each other at the lake and bickered all afternoon. Finally unable to take the fighting any longer I ordered them both outside. Starting to sound familiar?
No doors were broken on the way out. They played happily for awhile. Then I heard Gus screaming. I met him at the door. There didn’t appear to be anything wrong with him. I asked where he got hurt. I meant on him. He wanted to show me where exactly. By the time he pulled me far enough to understand that it had been the tree I insisted on seeing where on his body he had been hurt. I pulled his shirt up to see his torso covered in scrapes. He couldn’t hold still long enough for me to check him all over but I had the idea. Attempting to carry him in the house without hurting any of his injuries we went in to tend to him. A few band aids weren’t going to take care of this.
I didn’t get any pictures of him. He was actually hurt. He sobbed on my lap for awhile telling me that he didn’t like it. He didn’t like it at all. settling down for awhile he was ok until I pulled up his shirt for another look and he saw one of the scratches. He cried again until he cried himself to sleep on my lap. The hearty dose of Ibuprofen could have helped that along a little.
Thankfully neither of them were seriously injured. Both wrecks could have been bad. 8 will be sore tomorrow but is otherwise relatively free from harm. The door window will be dropped off at the hard wear store to have the window replaced by a piece of plexi glass. I may have suffered the worst of the day. Having both children try to kill themselves in one day is more than I can handle.
My parents came out to see us. We had been planning the trip most of the summer. They were off on their yearly pilgrimage to the west coast. A group of Morgan people were meeting at Fort Robinson for a weekend of trail riding. We all decided to drive over and, kind of, meet them. We are only so sociable so we decided to camp up at the wood reserve instead of staying with them in the fort proper. Unfortunately as the weekend drew near we realized it was the same weekend as Friendly Festival but if there’s one thing we’re willing to miss Festival for it’s a weekend of camping and horses.
Mom and dad got here on Thursday. We had, another, birthday party for The Goblin Child. I think that makes four parties now? She may be slightly spoiled 😉 Then Friday morning we got up bright and early and were off to the fort. Only, not. As much as I thought I had everything ready to go already it took hours to get everything packed and animals fed. Then just as we were finally ready and about to load the horses there was a phone call that some neighbors were working cattle and had found a bull in with them that wasn’t theirs. We had to go get him and bring him home before we could take off with the trailer. We pulled into the neighbors corrals and nothing was there. We called to see where this bull was supposed to be. North of the house they said. We went to the house and there was a barn to the north, but not even a road to it much less cattle being worked. We called again trying to figure out what in the world was going on. Finally they added a rather important piece of information. They weren’t working cows at their house but over at their pasture. That little bit of info would have helped from the beginning.
Once we got him home and put out with the horses that would be staying there we were able to load our horses and get going. Down to a friends to pick up a horse we got to borrow for the weekend. She had been standing patiently most of the morning tied to a trailer. She walked right onto the trailer and we were off. Again.
We made Chadron for a late lunch then off towards the fort. Again. It was hot. We pulled into the campground at the wood reserve to find it packed. Loads of big living quarters trailers were squeezed in so tight we could barely make the turn around them. I was muttering grouchily about them when I realized, I knew them!! It was my good friend Kay and her riding group. That didn’t make me so grouchy after all.
I have millions of pictures so I will try to tell the rest of the story through them.
The Goblin Child was happy to be off to kindergarten. She knew most of her classmates and was glad to see some old friends join the class. She knew the routine and loves school. We never worry about her and school.
8 has done nothing but want to play in the preschool room for the last couple of years, we thought the transition might go well. We thought wrong. His excitement over playing has disappeared. He went happily the first day but his reluctance has grown ever since. Hopefully he starts to enjoy it, this is the part that is supposed to be fun. If he doesn’t like it now he’s really going to hate it as he gets older.
She’s six now and just about to start kindergarten. How did she get so big?! It seems like just the other day she was born, such an incredibly tiny little thing. We celebrated in the back yard with lots of water, in the pool, out of the sprinklers, on the slip and slide. The kids played happily all afternoon, running and splashing, and eating copious amounts of sugar.
I haven’t been on here for a very long time. Far longer than I ever intended it to be. We, well, we got busy and the summer slipped away. I have to make note of when they harvest wheat though and that is done and over with so I better write something about it!
It was a fairly late harvest and still wet and hard to get to with that. They started in on the neighbors wheat on July 11th and finished up on the 26th. It’s been a really wet year. It rained all the way through while they tried to squeeze in between showers and fight through wet wheat and green weeds. The kids are getting big enough to enjoy going along and not have to sit in the combine the whole time. They loved playing in the grain trailers with Jack, riding in the semis, and also napping in the combine. The Goblin Child and I made use of combine time, sending 8 off with his father so we could get some riding done. She’s starting to get more comfortable on Coyote and Rusty is grown up enough to be useful ponying and helping them when needed.
8 had a little accident near the end of harvest. He was riding along in the semi. He had the misfortune of being leaning on the door when another kid opened it. The semi was stopped, his head broke his fall. He caught his head on the steps and it left a pretty good scratch on the back of his head but luckily he wasn’t hurt bad.
Last year when we went to the kids first rodeo they loved it. We found a out about more coming up the next summer and I told them we could go. The next summer came around, things changed, we lost Onna, but the rodeos were still coming up. The Goblin Child found out about them and still really wanted to go. I told her we’d try.
Coyote isn’t Onna. 8 has been riding him, while being led. T.G.C. has been getting started on him, trying to get used to him after riding her own horse. i have a lot more I want to say but don’t seem to be getting around to writing it. So here are the videos. It wasn’t great. We all survived. I did not get to work with Rusty the way I wanted. There was no way we could have done it without Tanna and Jerry. They were life savers. We are so grateful to Tanna for coming along and always appreciate all the help she gives us.
They scared me half to death here loping back!
I kept watching not through the phone and it would drift down. I’d look back at it and realize I was filming dirt and get aimed again then back to the dirt. Oops.
I volunteered this year. Last year I told them I couldn’t help because I had to work, and, well, I did. Have to work that is, somehow it felt like a convenient excuse though. Then all my friends did it and I was jealous and felt left out. So this year I told them I’d help.
It was a fun busy week. I thought I’d be an assistant in one of the rooms with someone else in charge. Instead I wound up doing science projects. I happen to love doing science projects! But we had to choose from the ones in “the book” that went with the theme and gave a bible tie in and so on. It was fun anyway. We made slime. We made baking soda play dough then added vinegar. That was the greatest. This baking soda is your life. Start squirting vinegar. This is your life on God! I want more God in my life the children screamed. We’d squirt them with more vinegar and their hands, covered in play dough, foamed. That part wasn’t in “the book” they just said to add vinegar to baking soda. Boring. We made tin can telephones and played telephone. And we filtered dirty water through sand, gravel and rice.
The last night the kids got up and did their little program. It was very nicely done. Some singing, some pictures, some talking. Our children were, of course, adorable. Sometimes just by being rotten. They’re always cure when they’re your kids 😉
And I see that it wont load 8’s videos. I’ll mess with them and get them shortened or something. He was adorable dancing to his own personal beat. Totally different from everyone else.
The hens had been up and gone with the new chicks. All through the day the nests sat empty except for unhatched eggs and the stench of rot. We decided to start cleaning. The only problem was that the hens and chicks were back for the night. Something had gotten into the eggs though, and a few were laying scattered about. We picked up one egg, laying far off from the nest and the children fought over who got to throw it into the dump.
8 won by refusing to relinquish his grasp on it. He threw it and it bounced off some boards and fell to the ground. My daughter told me it was bleeding. I thought we might as well look at the chick that hadn’t made it and get a bit of a biology lesson from it. But the chick that hadn’t made it… had.
Up until then he had been just fine. There amidst the broken egg shell was a perfectly formed baby chick. Egg yolk not yet absorbed and vessels not yet hardened off. He wasn’t dead just not ready to hatch yet. We had killed him, he just wasn’t gone yet.
I picked up the gasping chick and held him in my hand. Instead of, or as well as, a biology lesson we got a lesson in morality. I told them how all babies, even, or especially, those about to die needed to be held and loved. I nearly sobbed over this poor dyeing chick. The children looked at it and looked at me. Then they wanted to know, when could they throw more eggs?
Now that I knew there were at least a few of the eggs in the nest that were still viable I called my friend who is hatching geese in her incubator. She very kindly offered to let me put my chicken eggs in with them.
I covered myself fully with long sleeves and gloves and went to fetch the eggs. Reaching under attacking hens, blindly grasping for eggs I was afraid I would smash chicks so I picked up the yellow hen and set her next to the nest. As I did so chicks fell out of her like large rain drops. Plopping to the ground around her. I foolishly thought the hens set on the chicks, I didn’t realize they burrowed into her like worms. Or ticks, big fluffy ticks.
At my good friends house we turned the children out to play in the yard while we went down to the basement and candled the eggs. She started out doing it but the stench of rotten egg was making her sick so I took over. Out of around a dozen eggs the first few we did were bad. I was beginning to feel like an idiot for rushing these rotten eggs to her house to save. Then we found a good one, then another. The last one I was starting to say was yet another bad one, look it’s cracked, when she broke in that it wasn’t cracked! It was starting to hatch! Couldn’t I hear it?
Listening for a moment I realized that I could hear the tiny peeps coming from inside! We left it there to do its thing, scrubbed our hands, and took the goslings out to play with the children. That egg and one other has hatched. Repulsed by the lingering smell of rot she re-candled the eggs and found two more bad ones and with those gone it smells much better in her hatching facilities. There are still two more to go. Are they good? Will there be four extra chicks? We are waiting to see! And here I thought the excitement of the saga of the hens ended when the first set hatched.
They hatched Tuesday. Eight in all. Beautiful little pale yellow and white chicks with brown highlights on heads and backs. Both mothers are clucking after them worriedly. Yesterday they finally took them away from the nest and out to explore the world. When we checked the nest they were gone. As we crawled in to look at the remaining eggs we spied a little ball of fluff hidden in a corner.
One of the chicks got left behind.
We picked it up, cuddled it, and loved on it, as we went in search of the hens. They had found a good soft spot in the dirt and were proceeding to show the chicks how to scratch. Although they cast a wary eye on us as we got close we were able to sneak in close enough to set the chick down and send him off towards them. The took him right in not noticing he hadn’t been there all along.
Back at the barn things smelled of rotten eggs. After being set on for two extra days as the chicks got big enough to roam the remaining eggs hadn’t hatched. It was time to clean house. And that was where the drama began….