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Pumpkins

Fall is my favorite time of year. I love fall leaves and pumpkins, golden rustling corn fields and cool crisp mornings.

Ok, mostly I just love pumpkins. I hauled them by the ton over to the house and gave them away to anyone who would take one. It makes me sad to see the poor pumpkins still left alone and unloved sitting in the garden. I had tons of fun decorating pumpkins even if I didn’t carve any this year so…..

Lets play “Wheres Waldo” with pumpkins! Can you find:  6 Babies (same baby 6 times),  3 Mice,  5 Bats,  1 Owl,  5 smiley faces,  1 Spider web with a smattering of spiders, 1 Horse Head,  2 Scaredy cats, 1 Witch on a broom,  A murder of Crows and bonus points for the second scare crow and farm scene.

The Changeling

It was a bad day.

Some days just are that way. The wind was howling and they couldn’t combine. The uncombined corn blew over and/or off of the stalks. We ran to Chadron for groceries. Elly fussed the whole time so we gave her a bottle, but no burping, which quieted her but I think precipitated the next small issue.

Her dad always gives her her bed time bottle leaving me time to relax and get other things done. Tonight was no different. They giggled and talked and tried to get her medicine down. With as much milk as possible hoping for a long time between feeds.  We all sat on the couch together looking forward to sleep. The day and the wind were winding down. I flipped through a magazine as he sat her up in his lap to burp her.

A loud shouting, which may or may not have involved a lot of cursing, interrupted my peaceful reverie. I turned to see my husband blocking the last of a stream of vomit with the burp cloth as he held sweet little Elly at arms length. His bare chest glistened with milk and the dripping globules  of a cottage cheese  like substance that makes up the content of her stomach. With a gasp of horror I looked beyond him to the end table. His phone, the remotes, all three of them, magazines, including the one he had just bought, and the case for his lap top were all covered.

Other then the sheer volume it took to cover that much surface area he had been holding her with her head to the center of the couch. She had projected for a good two or three feet. I grabbed a few more burp cloths and took the, baby?, and we began clean up. The table, the couch, the floor and the blanket had all been coated in the slimy stuff. My quilt that we keep on the couch is sturdy but aging I don’t think it is going to stand up to this baby stuff. The couch it’s self will surly need replaced by the time this is over.

I will never need to worry about him beating little Elly, if he was able to refrain from tossing her in the shock and horror of that little incident nothing else should ever try his temper. I wonder though is this a baby that we have or did goblins steal the real Elly and leave us one of theirs?

If by any chance you should ever come to visit us, don’t sit on the couch.

Favorite Toys

My grandma sent Elly a box full of beautiful girly things, cute shoes, head bands, clothes, and a sheep. The sheep is a cross between cute and creepy. I’m still not sure if I like it or am scared of it. It is just under a foot tall and takes batteries. To make it’s head bobble?

I set it down in front of Elly the other day as she laid on the floor enjoying a little time out of her crib.

She stared at it in wonder and gently wove her fingers through its long curly hair. Next thing I knew she had pulled it over and was batting at its foot. Now it’s her favorite thing to cuddle and play with.

Another Story

Remember? The horse thing was another story? Get it? Ha ha.

So they let me bring my horse along sometimes. I enjoy it quite a bit. My stomach seems to be holding together even through some of our wilder moments so it’s all good.

I was stationed at the highway while they (the four-wheeler guys) went to get the cows. They would bring them out of the pasture and down the section line. I would stop the leaders and wait for them all to bunch then help guide them across the highway onto the proper path. I got a call asking if I could maybe come hold a gate that didn’t have any gate to it. So Coyote and I headed east over the hill to see if we could help.

Over the hill I saw that not only did the gate not have much gate, The fences down one side didn’t have much fence to them. The wire and posts were there just not in an upright position. I called asking where I would be able to assist taking the fence issue into account. During this conversation I stepped Coyote to the side of the road and let him graze a little, he needs more food. I was told not to worry about it after all they had every thing under control. I watched the cows take off into a neighboring field then hung up the phone and turned Coyote to walk off in one smooth motion. Only it wasn’t smooth. Coyote took a step and halted jerkily. He was then willing to go again but I stopped him and looked down. I had ridden him right into a coil of barb wire. One of the fences that weren’t was strung into the road. I persuaded him that his first instinct had been correct and we really should stay stopped as I quickly dismounted to try to get this figured out. Not only were my favorite ponies legs tangled in barb wire we would shortly be blocking the path of the on coming cattle with corn fields on both sides and once again no fences.

Coyote held still while I stepped onto one of the loops. When I asked him to take a step forward he lifted his leg high and neatly untangled him self. I love my pony. Many horses would have panicked at the entanglement but he was as calm as ever in his crazed way. We were able to finish moving the cows and upon closer inspection he came away with only a couple of nicks on his legs.

 

Corn Harvest

Autumn is a very busy time of year around here. This year the fall work seems to be squeezed into a very short period of time. What would normally be spread out over a couple of months is needing done immediately, all of it. There is no grass left in any of the pastures so cows are needing to come home now that would normally stay out till mid winter. That means fences need fixed before they can come home. Extra calves are being fed in the feed lot, again because of the drought, and again more fence fixing. And the biggest thing of all, the corn is ready to harvest. This also needs done before to many cows can come home as the corn fields are where they will be living. More fencing will be involved I’m sure.

Some of this I am enjoying immensely. These four-wheeler guys allow me to bring my horse and help with the cows. But that is another story.

For the most part it just means I never see my husband. It’s hard to go out side and do the things I used to do with a very small child in tow. Next year when she’s bigger she can come along.

Mostly though corn harvest has begun. The corn has been dry around 13 percent moisture. Yield is not as good as other years but great for as dry as it’s been. Got to love irrigation.

Development?

People keep telling me that Elly can’t play with toys yet. If that is the case what is she doing?

 

Snow

We got snow!

No frost yet but four inches of snow. This is just wrong.

Nocturne says  “I hate snow. Period.”

 

A Fall Ride

I got to go for a ride this weekend, two actually. My husband watched Elly and gave me time to ride. It was so nice to be out of the house, the days were beautiful. Those crisp fall days with the wind whistling through the corn stalks. Enough bite to the air to make the horse shy at every rustling leaf. Coyote felt good and once I began to regain my seat after such a long hiatus I enjoyed his spookiness immensely. I would have liked a nice run but that might have pushed my recently sliced open stomach a little to far. I would hate to have my guts spill out onto my saddle.

My favorite fall story is The Legend of Sleepy Hollow. I always envision the headless horseman on a fiery Morgan. What a sight that would have been, galloping through the beautiful trees with their fallen leaves churning up under pounding hooves. Add pumpkins to the picture and all my favorite things are covered. So for an hour we pretended to be my favorite literary character. Of course we stirred Corn leaves not oak leaves.We could use more trees around here. I miss the fall colors.

Elly is lucky she was a girl or she might have been named Ichabod

This one is even the same color as Coyote. I see some other similarities as well, the evil eye and good temperment.

Fall and Pumpkins

October is here! I love fall and now it’s officially late enough that I can start playing with my pumpkins!

I have a bit of a thing for pumpkins. We planted a nice little patch again this year. It may have gone just a bit overboard. There are so many different varieties how could I pick just one or two or three or four, oh dear. I think I stopped at seven. But really once that includes an acorn squash and spaghetti squash that really limits the pumpkin varieties. I planted big ones and little ones. Orange ones and grey ones. Flat ones and round ones. There are so many out there it’s hard to decide, next year I will just have to plant a few more. This year we didn’t do enough.

Now for my favorite part. I get to haul them to the house and arrange them just so. Add a few corn stalks and mums. Then sit back and look at all the pretty pumpkins. Some thing is lacking though.

There’s nothing to carve.

Next year I really will have to plant just one plain old field pumpkin.

Brilliant Baby

She is obviously brilliant not even officially born yet, they start counting development from due date not date of birth on preemies, and she’s playing with her toys. I know, I know some thing only a mother is fascinated with.

I read that they should have supervised time on their stomachs to build muscle and something  so I laid a blanket down and put her down on her stomach. She buried her face straight down into the floor, obviously considering breathing to be unnecessary. Once we had that fixed, temporarily she kept trying to do it again, she started kicking and pushing with her legs. I put my hand behind them and she crawled (scooted on her face) right across the blanket.

All in all she is a happy baby, always giggling. Call it gas if you will I think she smiles all the time. She talks more then I thought babies did. Every thing gets commented on, whether a grunt or a squeal. Food is especially exciting. Lots of grunting and growling. She is a very bitey child. Nothing that gets near her mouth is safe when she senses that food is near. With a deep throated growl and a snap of the gums she will take a chunk out of the burp cloth or any finger that ventures to close.

She wiggles and squirms, bunching into a tiny ball I could almost envision still fitting in my stomach. Then flinging her arms out she stretches reaching for the sky and I know what was going on in my stomach.