Saturday, December 26, 2009

Merry christmas!

How was everybody's holidays?

Ours was pretty good all things considered. On christmas eve we went to MIL's house and ended up cutting firewood, wrapping last minute presents, discovering that my very old slaughtered hen was cooked too fast and was a tough old bird, and then opening presents. Normally what happens is that the presents get passed out and then everyone tears into them at once and you really can't tell if someone liked your gift or not because you missed them opening it! I asked once why they didn't take turns and got told that the boys are too impatient and cant wait their turns. hmmm..Fast forward to this year...
my MIL, "Okay...let Lilly open one first" curiouser and curiouser...we take turns now?? when did that change?? Did I miss something or did someone finally decide that maybe a 7,11,and 15 year old ARE old enough to take turns?? Lilly of course had difficulty with the concept but all in all she did pretty well, especially since grandma and grandpa let her help open theirs ;)

Lilly recieved a bunch of clothes, a ladybug tent with tunnel, a puppy dog that sings jingle bell rock and spins in a circle, a puppy that knows her name and talks sings and plays games with her, a stroller and carseat for her baby, a kitchen set for her to make her baby food, and a crib and highchair for her baby. All in all she was extremely happy.

I got a wonderful drop spindle to try out from my hubby, a book, a sweater, two pairs of socks, a candle, and a canning book (that I already have ;) )
Tim got a DVD, candy, Some shirts and pants, and a book about having kids (really cute kids book)

Christmas morning we got up and unwrapped santa presents (included above) and then struggled through feeding and watering all the animals in the blizzardy drifts before driving to grandmas for the day. We pretty much did nothing all day. The three boys, Tim, and Rick spent all day playing with the new/used xbox 360 that the boys had gotten. Lilly played in her tent, with her doll and stroller, and her puppys all day. I took the entire day off and veged out in a corner playing my SNES system on an itty bitty TV and not being bothered by a darn thing! In other words, I was a lazy oaf!

I do feel much better today though and am in dire need of some excersise and mobility following my day of entire immobility and am going to go work on cleaning the house up and getting it back in some semblence of order.

Kelle: It's supposed to be another girl but the ultrasound tech flashed over it really really quickly and really didn't convince us that that's what we're having so we're preparing for either. It also doesn't help that I've spent most of this preg feeling like it's a boy. That just might be wishful thinking though to have one of each ;) So names for both/either. That's a very pretty name that they've chosen for your granddaughter!

Some of the names we've been considering: James, Wesley, Rose, Holly...

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

General news...

Hmm what have I been doing lately...

Sunday we all stayed home "sick" not because we really felt bad but because we were exhausted. Every now and then Lilly gets a runny nose for no reason at all, this then leads to all sorts of wonderful green stuff running down her throat. This leads to coughing and being awake all night, occasionally vomitting if she gets coughing hard enough. The first night with the runny nose is always the worst since the humidifier hasn't been in her room for long enough to have saturated it. Saturday night was one of those nights...we were awake ALL night! Sunday Lilly ran around and played like she had all the energy in the world. Tim and I on the other hand looked at each other and collapsed on the chair to move only when nes.

Monday was candy making day and we took ourselves down to grandmas. The kids watched movies and played all day (Lilly and 2/3 of the nephews) while grandma and I made peanut butter fudge, chocolate fudge, divinity (white almost marshmellowy flavored candy), penuche (made with brown sugar and tastes like maple candy), and pecan brittle. Not to mention lunch and supper. Wheew we were exhausted by evening but very sugared up ;) Tim, BIL, and FIL worked on fixing vehicles all day long. They got Tim's truck running again, FIL's Four wheeler, and BIL's car all fixed.

Tuesday one of Tim's cousins was supposed to come down and give me a hand going through baby stuff and setting up the house for the new baby. She forgot and made other plans sooo...I called daycare and sent Lilly in and worked on the goat barn from about 9-3. The goats now have a building with very few holes, and a completed stall (with the exception of attempting to waterproof the floor), a stall wall between where the two kidding stalls will be, and 2.5/5ths of the wall done between the milking room and the stalls. It now needs the fronts of the kidding stalls, waterproofed, the rest of the milking room wall and door, a front door on the barn, under the eaves sealed up, and shingles (it has titanium underlayment on right now to keep it watertight until shingles can be put on). We are also due to have a "blizzard-like" storm in the next few days and Blessing is due to kid the end of January...any bets on if it will be ready??
Tuesday night we decided that due to the weather forecast we were going to run some of our "freebie" animals to Casper that night before the storm. So we loaded up 3 chickens, 2 ducks, and 3 rabbits into catch-a-live traps and carriers and loaded them in the back. The duck guy and 2/3 of the rabbit homes we managed to get a hold of. I took spare numbers though and all ended up in homes before the night was out (although unfortunately not nes. the homes they were promised to) I didn't see any point in hauling them back home again to await the storm at our house when there were others in Casper that wanted them.

We are now down to just three rabbits, the two Californians and the holland lop female. The holland lop may be finding a home as well. This gives us few enough rabbits that I can take them down towards the house more and have them more at hand for taking care of in bad weather or baby time. The two ducks that went are two ducklings that were hatched a few months ago but were meat crosses. The three chickens were "ruby's chicks" that Ruby hatched out this summer. They were the only chicks hatched here but for some reason were wilder than snot. This included not going into the pen, flying out of the 6 foot pen, eating my eggs *cuss cuss*, and generally running amuck. I was simply tired of dealing with them. All of "the rogues" are settled down now and laying and proceed quickly and quietly into the coop every night and lay nicely in the nesting boxes (most of the time). We also found a new home for 2/3 of the roos here and are down to one roo. They just simply refused to get along.

Wednesday I spent all morning taking care of the animals (making sure all bed were made, all had plenty to eat/drink, were clean, healthy, and happy, etc.) and then cutting up vegetables to throw into the stew for lunch. I got the veges started cooking and couldn't find the meat that I had bought on monday in the fridge...We bought it then went to grandmas for candy, put it in grandmas fridge for the day, took it out to the vehicle that night in a box of stuff, brought the box in and set it on the freezer and promptly forgot it. I found the icky meat on the freezer in the box this morning. *cuss cuss* two packages of meat ruined and no meat for lunch. So I threw the packages of meat into the garbage can and hear *sSShhhhhHH*. I think "oh great one of the packages broke open and is going to stink up the house" so I go over and pull the trash bag out of the can to realize that my hubby threw away a whip cream can last night and the spout has ripped through the bag and is spewing whipped cream goo all over the bottom of the trash. *sigh* I abandoned the trash can. After cleaning off the deep freeze so I could get into it I found one package of rabbit chunks labeled 2007. "yummy" thawed and cooked it and threw it in the stew. Now thanks to the baby I'm sick to my tummy from the smell of frying meat and can't eat a thing.
Spent the first part of the afternoon being upset and depressed. So I decided that I would go work on the computer a bit and get some of our finances into the program. For some reason working with numbers or organizing things normally cheers me up. Hubby took a nap then came in about 3 and was mad at me because I was ignoring him...???! After explaining to hubby that I wasn't purposely ignoring him and cuddling for awhile I now get to decided what we are having for supper and I don't even WANT to set foot in the darned kitchen again at the moment!

I'm pretty sure most of my problem right now is simply a combination of hormones and stress but I feel so lost and helpless and there's so much that needs to be done: barn, finances updated, baby got ready for, laundry, dishes, food figured out, Christmas (yes, unfortunately this year it feels like a chore), presents wrapped still, presents mailed, goat breedings figured out, Lillys old bed sold, Vet tech assoc dues paid, bills paid, remind hubby to fill out unemployment paperwork, dr. visits, the list goes on and on, and while I'm at it..."can I pick up the nephews at the bus stop"

I wanted to be a bigger part of their lives and have a part on the ranch but now is just NOT good timing! AGGG!
Okay enough whining...I hope everyone is having a merry christmas! (yes I really mean that) and I will try and post pics of the new barn soon and stop moaning about all my lifes problems...
Tommorrows agenda....???? attempt to find energy??

What you can help me with :
Baby names suggestions??
Big smiles and hugs ;)
other than that, probably not much lol

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Terminally idiotic....

That's the new term for my sister in law...

Apparently getting out and being with her family is not enough for her. She had one condition that she was given when she was let out and that was to not go anywhere near the other person involved in the incident.

She was arrested again today, her hubby has to deal with the children by himself again and the kids wont have mommy home for the holidays all because she didn't learn anything the first two weeks in jail! AHHHHHHH!

I'm trying to relax here but it isn't easy. Already tonight we had to go to the MIL's for dinner so that we could take one of the boys my graphing calculator for his homework. I feel like everything is upside down again and I just want to crawl in a dark closet and hide for about 3 days. *sigh* Maybe things will look better in the morning.

Tommorrow after taking care of the animals and the usual stuff Hubby gets to take his brother to wheatland to get BIL's truck fixed. BIL can't lift the ramps to get the truck on and off the trailer by himself so Hubby gets to now that SIL won't be there. Hubby asked me if I want to go, I haven't decided yet. I may ask him if he'd take Lilly and give me a day to myself. Really dont know what I'd do with a day alone though, probably work on budget stuff. I haven't had a chance to keep up with all of our account activity and currently our computerized finances are sitting in June.

I'm headed to bed now. Maybe I'll decorate for Xmas tommorrow if I can get the totes down. I'm really having problems getting into the spirit this year though...

Monday, November 30, 2009

The family I married into....

Did you ever get the feeling that the man you married might not be worth putting up with the inlaws??

I'm not going to tell the full story but the beginning two weeks of november was spent taking care of my brother-in-laws family. On the 4th my sister-in-law got arrested on some pretty serious charges. My brother-in-law had just had back surgery a week before. That left one dad who all of a sudden was single and wasn't supposed to lift a glass of water to take care of their three boys.

Dean the oldest (15) was angry (to say the least) and immediately refused to go back to school.
Lee the middle boy (11) was quiet and recluse (he is normally anyways) and very confused
and Ty (7) immediately went to bat for his mom and started the "she's a wonderful mom" stuff

Well Dean and Ty don't get along the best under the greatest of circumstances so imagine the battles over this with Ty defending and Dean mad as heck. was fun...

My mother-in-law took up "grandma post" and the boys and Rick (B-I-L) spent the first 5 nights at grandmas and didn't go home. Grandma fetched homework, cooked meals, tried to keep them fed and "happy", while trying to understand the whole thing herself and help them deal with this. To add to the mess grandma's house was getting a new roof and the dishwasher bit the dust.

Me on the other hand spent some time helping grandma cook, getting the homework done, and at Rick's request cleaning and organizing his home so that he could find things to take care of the boys.

Basically everyone's lives went on hold to help them deal with this. The boys slowly adjusted just in time for "mom" to be suddenly released Two weeks to the day that she was arrested. None of us are sure why the judge released her. We speculate that since our jail here is terribly overcrowded he needed someone to release so that they had more room and with the family here she isn't a flight risk.

So the SIL got out just in time for me to have my life back for a few days before thanksgiving. One day was spent desperately cleaning our house which hadn't been touched in that two weeks. The next few were spent getting the animals back up to par, building rafters for the goat barn, and helping my hubby figure out how to put in our new windows. Then on Wednesday Lilly and I went to grandmas house to help make desserts for thanksgiving.

Thanksgiving day was spent as one big happy family (in a manner of speaking). Friday we spent most of the time at grandmas too to help with leftovers, Saturday we took a drive and a picnic lunch to the mountains as one happy family (MIL's idea), Sunday we wnt to church then to grandmas for more leftovers since our kitchen was torn apart for putting in windows. Sunday afternoon I crashed and barely did anything.

That leaves today where I'm breathing a deep sigh of relief and exhaustion as I study the mountains of laundry waiting for me as well as everything dumped here and there. Also trying to catch up on thank you cards for the wonderful guys from the church who helped us put up our barn. Not to mention trying desperately to organize December's schedule which has gotten unbelieveably full since we have had the last two weeks with access to the Boy's schedules and all of their christmas, singing, band, and programs.

Other than the boy's schedules we also have a pesticide meeting this month (for my hubby to keep his pesticides liscense), his work party, Church caroling, Need to take the last goat to Cheyenne to be bred, need to figure out if one of the already "bred" girls is in heat or not, need to figure out the date that the baby bunnies will be due (if she's actually preg this time!), not to mention the monthly preg exam and chiropracter.
One of these months I'd like to get Lilly involved in Gymnastics and the reading time at the library. Also have my mothers of prescoohlers meetings as well.

The SIL has a hearing for entering her "plea" on the 15th and we are assuming she will remain "free" for awhile. Depending on when the trial actually is she may (probably) be looking at jail time. In which case our lives will likely go upside down again. She normally helps during calving and haying seasons. If they are speedy enough that she is back in jail by the end of Feb this may be the most stressful year we've ever had. She won't be here to help, Rick will still have to be careful of his back, I have four goats due as well as me, Lilly turns two in Feb., grandma and grandpa cant do calving all by themselves and that leaves just my hubby. We expect Tim to be laid off still at that time of year but with him needed that desperately for calving we may not get a choice on him working (which if he isn't "available" will cancel the unemployment payments).

Please pray for us as we struggle. I will try to keep you updated as frequently as possible. Right now we are fighting the daily weather and praying the warm streak holds so that we can finish the goat's barn, get all the windows in our house, get an xmas tree, and still be able to keep our minds.

Friday, October 23, 2009


Blessing's story is a short one. She comes from the same breeder as Sue and is a purebred Saanen. She is a half sister of Sue out of the same Buck and is approximately the same age. She however, unlike Sue was bred last spring and spent the summer on the mountain with her kids. She was not milked however. This year will be her second freshning but first milking. The breeder is looking to sell her since she is slightly skittish after being on the mountain (even though she was calm and tame before going up) and also she was accidently bred. The bucks apparently broke out of their pen and since the Boer buck is the dominant one the breeder is fairly sure that she's been bred to him. There is still a chance however that he was otherwise occupied and that it was Blessing's father that bred her.

Since I am enjoying Sue so much and want to expand my Saanen herd I have agreed to buy her and will pick her up as soon as the goat's new barn is finished (Hopefully by next week). She will have an unknown due date in late Jan/ early feb. So we will have kids and milk earlier than expected but I will be able to start training her before I am occupied with my own baby (in theory). The kids will of course be sold. Saanens (even grade without papers) and Saanen crosses can often be sold as pack animals since they are one of the strongest goat breeds. Hopefully the kids will get homes as pack animals or pets. If not they will probably end up going to the meat plant later next year. I have already had some interest in my Saanen kids this year from the guy who bought Buddy.

Thursday, October 22, 2009


Well it's been an interesting time with the goats this fall.

Since the hailstorm we had here in july our feed supplies have been short this year. So all the does got packed up and shipped to the mother-in-laws house. The problem is that at her house there is no fences strong enough to keep the goats in. Well if horses can be picketed why can't goats? Earlier in the summer we had taken them up there for a few weeks as well and had used a dog trolley, and some dog cables and stakes to picket them out. The cables were set up at enough distance apart to allow them to touch noses and be near each other without allowing them to become tangled. This time when we brought them down the MIL wanted them put in the corral to eat the brown weeds. Unlike the first there were no trees to cable them to. I only had one stake still (the other had been bent beyond repair) so I staked Sue out on the north side of the corral. I then pounded a steel T-post in as a temporary solution and chained Ellie to it. I then clipped Rachels and Fantines cables to the fence on the south side of the corral. We did this for several days. Every night I would go and "collect" them and put them in the barn there for the night.

Some background on Ellie...she is a fraidy cat through and through. She was raised and spent her first two years on one farm. Supposedly she went to shows and was shown some. The day I brought her home she cried the entire way here, then freaked and jumped/climbed the four foot fence that she had been in to get loose. Everytime she goes anywhere that is "new" she freaks. This includes being put from the garden where the goats were staying this spring into their pasture here (a distance of less than 100 yards). She spent the entire week after that "move" bellering and pacing. So needless to say she didn't take the "move" to MIL's easily.

The first few days that they were staked out Ellie was wrapped around the fence post every night. If she had paced the other way she would have unwound herself. I got tired of unwinding her day after day since it was obvious she wasn't getting much to eat that way. So I decided to switch her and Rachel one day. After all, Rachel was clipped to the fence and Ellie couldn't wrap herself around a straight fence. Unfortunately I neglected to check the lengths of the tie out lines in the short space of the corral and the distance I had chained Rachels and Ellies lines was a good deal closer than a nose reach. I came to put them away that night and found Ellie's and Rachel's cables wrapped around Rachel. Sadly, she didn't make it.

After taking care of Rachel I did some major thinking. First: If Fantine, Sue, and Blessing (story later) turn out to be good milkers (this is their first freshning for all) Ellie will be sold this year.
Second: I love Sue's calm disposition and adaptability much better (even though it comes with a mischevious curiousity) then the Nubians worried attitudes (although friendly and less aloof). Fantine will stay (as she appears to be somewhat adaptable to new pastures and continues eating calmly) and I will probably always own one/two Nubian/s but the focus of my herd is shifting to Saanens.

In other news: Ellie has been prancing around here for the last month and a half with her tail wagging and acting excited while Sue has continured eating calmly. I discovered that without a buck here it is difficult for me to tell when they are in heat. So I got a "buck rag" rubbed with buck scent since that supposedly works to help tell when they are in heat. Ellies response: "Neat toy! I'll take it and run every time!" Sue's response:"hmm a rag in a what..?"
Day after day it was the same story. So...when we had a snowstorm on the 10th and Ellie started really waving her tail and even Sue's tail was being held up I decided I might as well try it and loaded them up.
Two hours down to Cheyenne to the Mega-milkers herd for breeding and we get there and of course they show no response to the buck whatsoever. Talking with the herd owner Karen revealed though that rather than hauling them back and forth 20 times whenever I thought they might be in heat I could leave them there. Karen would board them for $1 a day plus feed and would walk the buck by them every day until they came into heat then would put them in with the man of my choice ;). Karen called me yesterday with news...Sue was in heat and being bred. YEAH! One down...due date March 20th, Saanen kids here we come! Today I get another call, Ellie came into heat and was in with "Touch". Fantastic! My two older does are both due a day apart! Now I just get to head down and pick them up and watch for signs of heat in about 18 days. I'm slightly dissapointed since neither was bred to the buck's I originally was hoping to have them bred too but at least they are both bred to good bucks that should produce wonderful kids. Ellie's "man" was out on breeding loan today and Sue's "man" died of old age this summer.

That just leaves Fantine to breed. Since she was born in April she won't be ready until at least next month. Wish me luck trying to figure out when she's in heat.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Computers stink!

Sorry for my long absence. I used to be able to go through and use my firefox screen and visit everything that I normally visited quickly and easily and Skipper would remember all the usernames and passwords for me. Well....for some reason my firefox has taken a dump and Im stuck with internet explorer. It knows none of my sites, I have no bookmarks anymore, and none of my passwords or usernames. It has been a daily challenge to try and remember them all. Hopefully I can get it fixed and up and running again soon. In the meantime I dont know how much I'll be able to make it on here. Everything takes me twice as long to look at because exploder is soooo slow on this computer and I have to type in usernames and passwords as well.

I apologize in advance for not reading your blogs as much as I should. It isn't that I don't love ya or want to know what's going on in your lives.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Apples, Apples, more free stuff

Sorry I've been "away". My hubby found a post on craigslist one night about a week ago for free aluminum cans here. So I took the truck and headed to the given address the next day. We filled the truck full of aluminum cans and took it to the junkyard to cash in. :) Lilly made $23 free dollars for her savings account.

In the process of loading the cans into the truck it was mentioned that the mans sister was moving and they are cleaning out the house to sell it. I had noticed the crabapple tree out front loaded with apples so bad that the branches touched the ground. I asked what would happen to all the apples. I got told he had no idea but they had to go and I was welcome to them.

Since then I've gone several more times to their house, picked for two hours on that tree (got halfway around it and quit) we now have about 12 gallons of crabapples here being processed in various ways (post later). I also got told to take some wire home, some plexiglass, the entire back porch (we disassebled it last night will haul it home tom.), and misc. other things.

They had a garage sale last weekend that I got a sneak peek at and came home with a pressure canner ($5!) and 2 boxes of jars ($1), Bags and bags of potting soil ($.25 ea), a toy chest and a lawnmower! The garage sale last weekend was to sell the stuff in the lady's garage. When I went to get the cans it was floor to ceiling boxes in the garage. They cleaned the house this last week and are having another sale this weekend.

Friday, August 21, 2009

The start of an obsession and happy endings

What happens when a gal with a big love of animals visits a dairy and discovers that a cute little goat kid will be killed and sent to a zoo for feed just because he was born the wrong sex? She decides that since she wanted to start a dairy herd of her own anyways the little buck can come home with her and be the start of her herd. (Yes she knows she can't save them all and that something has to be done with little bucks)

His first months at "home"

Standing in front of his house

This being my first goat I had no idea what I was getting myself into. For starters I quickly learned why they say to always get goats in pairs. All day he cried when I wasn't with him. I also quickly went on a search for general goat knowledge and discovered that for a small dairy herd like I intended that a buck was simply overdoing it a bit. The cost of feeding a buck is higher, you have to have separate places to put him away from the does if you want to know the due date, and to top it all off they reek! After discovering this my little buck quickly got wethered (fixed). The search began for a new job for him. In the meantime the search also continued for a companion for him. Early on in the search for a companion I discovered that he'd been born at the wrong time of the year. Being an October baby meant that there were no other kids to be found and that the only adults for sale tended to be expensive.

Reading on his breed, Saanens, I discovered that they had been long prized as pack animals since that breed tends to be one of the strongest goat breeds. Points for "buddy"! The training began. He learned to come when called, walk on a leash, and to accept being touched all over. As the months went on reality hit and it was discovered that despite his training and the time spent with him then he was still miserable. No companion could be found. So I decided the best thing for him would be to find him a good home with goats elsewhere.

I posted him on a site I'd found about packgoats and within a week a very excited man in Montana contacted me. His goat had lost his companion due to old age recently and he'd been searching in vain for another pack goat. After many emails and phone calls it was arranged that a business friend of his would pick Buddy up in Casper, pay us, and transport him to Cody. Then Bill (his new owner) would pick him up from there and transport him home. His journey began anew with me saying goodbye.

You always wonder what happens to animals you have to part with and if they truly do have a good home. I'm thrilled to say that I know Buddy does. He's grown into a very handsome goat and gets to hang out with his friend all day and go on trips into the mountains and on regular hikes. I couldn't have wished for a happier ending for my beginning of an obsession.

This is a trip they took just this month (Buddy will be 1 in October)

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Things I love about my daughter #13

She makes me laugh behind my hands when I know I should be scolding her.

Permanent marker *sigh* I'll bet this outfit is ruined.

Friday, August 14, 2009

The holiday baby...

I'm getting a valentines present! I'm getting a valentines present!

Here's the official announcement! I'm pregnant! Yahooo!! Okay I waited awhile to tell you all but I've been a tad busy with other things.



Is it a boy or girl???? What should we name it?? I'm so very excited!

This cute little bar that tells about the baby will be hanging out at the bottom of my blog for those that are interested!

Monday, July 27, 2009

Bank picnic

One of the things I love about living here is that every year the Converse County bank hosts a fabulous summer fun picnic in the park. They have hot dogs galore (some years they've even had brats and hamburgers), tons of drinks, tons of bags of chips, and tons of fun.

We started with dinner (something you did from the years they had brats, the brats were always gone by the end of the night)
Lilly had a hot dog and some white cheddar popcorn

Then we had ice cream sandwiches.

Then we were messy so we cleaned up a bit.

Then we wandered over to the balloons and got a balloon and since there wasn't much of a line yet for the tattoos or face-painting we stood in line for those. Lilly got a tattoo of a butterfly on her arm.

And a ladybug on her cheek, which took all of two seconds to smear.

Then we decided to check out the bouncy's. We thought she might be too young for some of them but that she could do others and would enjoy it. Boy were we wrong!

But watching the others play was a good opportunity for making friends.

Then with daddy along to reassure and help Lilly tackled the obstacle course.

She wasn't doing too bad by the end. she says the bouncy things still aren't her thing.

Then we watched all the kids zipping down the slide and she wanted to try it. so her and daddy climbed the slide and slid down! She enjoyed the climbing but didn't think much of it when it was her on the slide coming down. Maybe next year she'll enjoy these more. There were kids barely taller then her making their way up the rock climbing blowup. I have hope for her for next time.

Entertainment was provided in the form of some gymnastics and a dance by the local gymnastics girls team.

They also did handstands.

Then we had to get snowcones! This was the one thing she thoroughly enjoyed last year. She enjoyed it no less this time.

Down to every last slurp!

Then since we'd found uncle Rick we all walked back to get more food and she got to swing a bit between their arms

She got Cheetohs this time! and double fisted it!

Then we enjoyed some of the live music provided by the local band and danced till the sun went down! (If I can figure out how to do a video on here I'll put a dancing one on.)

And we're all looking forward to a wonderful time and tons more fun and food next year!

Thursday, July 23, 2009

I'm a little fruity!

Well we all knew I'd lose it someday. What happens when a woman buys a few fruits to try out her "new" old dehydrator that she just inherited from grandma and the husband says "I'll take your dried fruit to work with me." ?

Lemon (citrus didn't work well), honeydew, cantaloupe, plums, cherries

After giving him a dirty look and "politely" explaining that he can take fresh fruit while it is in season she decides that since fruit is in season and on sale and since hubby obviously doesn't have a problem with dried fruit that she is going to buy some and dry it for winter. Yummy snacks, topping for oatmeal, cereals, ice cream and so many other things. hmmm

So she goes to the store, and what does she see?? Fruit! And lots of it! And all sorts that she loves! soooo.....

She buys the fruit and gets it home

She vaguely wonders if she might have gone a tad bit overboard but hey this is fun right?

She sets her apricots that she canned last night off to the side.

Places her azure order up out of the way (ordered with Michaela and Millie)

And begins. The blueberies and cantaloupe make it into the first dehydrator (got at a garage sale when I mistakenly thought the trays would fit into grandmas)

Some nectarines, peaches, and cherries make it into grandmas and the rest of the fruit is all sorted through for firmness and ripeness. New batch tomorrow hopefully!

Monday, July 20, 2009

Slaughtering chickens

Warning! Contains graphic photos!

Well I talked my friend Millie and her family into coming down and helping me process my chickens. neither of us had done this before.

I had caught the four chickens the night before and had them locked in a pen. Millie's hubby Joe was wonderful and wrung all of their necks for us. Then we took the four down by the BBQ grill and got the scalding pot ready.

The chickens waited patiently

Then I scalded the chickens while Millie and Joe started plucking.

Here are the chickens waiting to be gutted (Joe did the gutting!)

And here they are after gutting and having their feet removed

And here is one of mine all cut up and in bags

Monday, July 13, 2009


The water pretty much took out enough of the corrals that we will have to rebuild most of it.
The quick paint map I made below has the barn in blue, where corral fences are/were in black and red lines where they've been wiped out.

First fence (far right of map)

Next fence in (second to right on map)

Third fence (third from right on map)

Corner by the upper Corral

Fence to the left of the barn

Other end of the fence on that side

Fence along the tires

Barn flooded

One more along the road

Flash flood

It was a hail storm, electric storm, and torrents of water all in one. We had about 2 inches of rain, golf ball sized hail, and lightning strikes all within 1 hour. And the wind, can't forget the Wyoming wind...

You've heard the statement that things will look better in the morning?? They do and they don't! lol There is quite a bit of damage and most things are gone. I have no garden, no sunflowers, the peonies and rhubarb that we planted 3 days ago are gone. I don't know if my lilacs, plum, or cottonwoods will survive. There is no point in planting the willows that I had. We lost the six chicks, the rest seem to be doing okay. There is a few leaves left on two of the cottonwoods and we will see how they do. The evergreen saplings look slightly rougher but are all in great shape considering. Other than the 6 chicks we didn't lose any of the other animals so far. They were all soaked to the bone last night and it remains to be seen if any will have lasting effects but they are all alive this morning. Other than the rabbit that was in the flipped hutch the others managed to stay dry and safe. The chickens, turkeys, dogs, and goats were all soaked.

At one point during the storm the back door blew open and Tim's dog Sarah came rushing in drenched. I have no idea why she wasn't in her dog house! She has one! At another point I was in the living room and Lilly started crying in the kitchen less than 20 feet away and I couldn't hear her over the storm. To top the fun off yesterday was Tim's birthday and I threw a party for him. We had 7 extra people here when it hit. There were points last night we weren't sure that they were going to be going home that night.

The ranch got it worse. I have no idea how the cows are doing but the corral at MIL's house is gone. I haven't been down there to see yet I was waiting for Lilly to wake up. I did get up this morning however and take a drive down the road in both directions from our house and we also took a drive after company left last night although it was almost dark.

Hail flows in our back yard last night

Is there a pot of gold?? I think we need one.

Our back yard

Irrigation ditch behind our house and along the road last night

irrigation ditch this morning

what's left of my plum tree

The willows that were to be planted

The cat that hunts and got caught in it vs. the lazy cat (this is the muddiest I've ever seen this cat and he is nuts about staying clean!)

Waterfall on the road last night (there were idiotic teenagers driving across this!)

That same waterfall by mornings light

the undercut of the road

The creek and fenceline, as you can see by the grass on the posts the water was HIGH!

The brand new culvert by our place that the county just put in.

Ironically the thistle survived...

The irrigation ditch from the hill. You can see where the water level was by all the washed mud

These are drifts of hail covered with mud and grass. My B-I-L has a picture of him standing next to them last night and they reach his waist.

Some of our pasture area...the grass is gone, the cactus survives *grimace*

I will post more later after I have pictures of the corral and some of the damage on the ranch itself.
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