Sunday, October 31, 2010

Inquiring Minds Want to Know???

Some of my dear readers expressed interest that I can and do use a chainsaw on a regular basis.  Lest any of you should think I'm of a special extraction, I'm going to list some of my foibles here.

Okay, okay, so I know nobody really cares, but I'm gonna tell you anyway!
Some interesting *giggle, gasp, snort, wheeze* facts about the Goodwife.......
  • I can run a chainsaw all day long, but the subtle nuances of the weed eater continue to elude me.  Seriously, I've tried to conquer this evil machine and it never, ever goes well.
  • I can whip up culinary delights from scratch and with nary a recipe to guide me, but successfully preparing boxed macaroni and cheese remains out of my grasp.
  • I can pluck a chicken, gut a chicken, make said chicken's severed feet dance to "Hello My Baby" but the actual killing of said bird is not in my rep-wa-twa.
  • See number 3 in regards to bunny wabbits....
  • I'm afraid of latex balloons; the Mylar ones don't bother me at all.
  • I can climb the roof to clean gutters or check the chimney, but getting close to the clear glass barrier at the upper level of the mall is my undoing.  Mind you I think I've been to the mall twice in the last 10 years, but that is neither here nor there, you get the point.
  • Beautiful teenage girls intimidate the hell out of me.......
  • Lets just make that beautiful women in general.
  • I like earthworms a great deal, but other worms really, really gross me out, particularly big fat ones like tomato worms.
  • I can't stand it when people vomit on movies.  I cover my eyes or avert my face until that part is over! 
  • Finally, and perhaps most disturbinglt..........I find Tommy Chong oddly sexy......... 

Ok, so now you know some fascinating facts about the Goodwife (yes, I am taking some creative license in my use of the adjective fascinating); Please tell me some schtuff 'bout you!

God Bless........

Saturday, October 30, 2010

The Cold Shoulder..........

Mother Nature has given us here in southern Illinois the cold shoulder............

These are our beautiful morning glories Thursday afternoon 10/28/2010

And this is what they looked like the next day............

Jack Frost gave them a big ole kiss them last night and took some of their beauty.

Winter is on the way!

Friday, October 29, 2010

First Quilting Project of the Season.........

As ya'll may or may not remember, I love to hand quilt.  As the weather turns colder and gets gloomier, nothing makes me happier than to kindle a fire in the fireplace and sit down to work on my quilt. 

Here's the baby quilt I made last season.  And here is the post where you can see it finished.  A few weeks ago I dug around in my stash to see what I wanted to make this winter.  I've got a pieced top that Mom did for me, but I don't want to work on it just yet.  I found this stamped design that I've had in there for years, so I decided this would be my first quilting project this season. 

I like the film strip style of the pictures.  They alternate two pictures in each strip.

I'm backing it with some really lovely, soft, peach flannel.  This is also the first quilt in which I'm using cotton battting.  Every other quilt I've made I've used polyester batting, but recently I've seen cotton, so I'm very excited to try it.  So far it's quilting really nicely.

It shouldn't take too long to finish, if I work on it steadily.  I've no idea what I'll do with it once it's done, but I'm sure I'll figure something out!

God Bless........ 

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Some Excitement......Two Weeks Ago

When I went down to ride a coupla weeks ago (before the lost dogs incident), Champ was nuttier than squirrel turds and I was wondering how things were going to go.  I knew we had to really focus or it was going to be bad, so we worked on suppleness, and just walking calmly.  He spooked several times and I was wondering if it was just the wind and the weather change that was coming in.  He REALLY didn't want to go down in the back, and that was a bit unusual.  We hadn't had any issues like that in quite some time.  I noticed that my Ellie girl was the only dog I could find.  Champ and I went down the other side of the creek and I saw Ginger (boxer) and I started hollering for Annie (Lab/Bluetick Coonhound mix).  As soon as I hollered Champ spooked again, and then I saw Annie.  She had was all the way in this hole....
and she was barking. She was so far in the hole that her barks sounded like she was way down in the back of our property. I think the barks were echoing in the ground or something and that's what was spooking Champ.

I rode back up to the barn, unbridled, and tied Champ and headed down there to where the dogs were, where I found this.....
Ginger got in the hole so far that all you could see was her tail......Annie was frantically digging at the top of the hole, covering Ginger with dirt and Ellie was just looking at me wanting to know what I wanted her to do!  Ginger would NOT get out of that hole and Annie wouldn't leave it either.  They were barking and whining and I was getting worried that it might be a 'coon in there.  'Coons can really tear a dog up and I was concerned for my dogs faces!

I was headed to the neighbor's to get Sweet Teenage Neighbor to help me out when Ginger came to me.  I got her and Ellie locked up at the house so then had only Annie to deal with.  She was pretty tired by this point and was out of the hole.  That allowed me to get in there and see what they had cornered......

In case you can't tell it's a possum......

Before you get all jacked up thinkin' he's cute........possums carry EPM which is a killer of horses.  I don't want any possums here although they are pretty much everywhere around here.  I was just relieved it wasn't a skunk or a 'coon!

Where was Champ this whole time?

Patiently standing at the barn waiting to be unsaddled!

  God Bless.........

Sunday, October 24, 2010

The Weekend Report..........

The Man took a personal day on Friday and he still has a week of vacation left as well!  Whoo hoo! 

Friday morning he put Black Betty in the infirmary so he could pull her transmission.

Notice she could use a good bath as well!!

After that was done, we finished up the trim-work on the barn.  It looks so great!  I can't wait to see it painted, but we may have to wait until next summer to get that done.

I'm thinking that up there in the peak, I'm going to try to get a laser cut cross to hang up there.....what ya think??  We are also trying to decide if we will paint it all red, with the eaves and the corners white, or if we will paint it red and paint all the batten strips white.........what ya think 'bout that??

Then, while I was on the ladder looking over the roof I saw this............the picture truly doesn't do it justice, but try to click on it and see if you can get a feel.  It was so beautiful I was nearly moved to tears and just had to make it my header for awhile.

Such a gorgeous world God has blessed us to live in!  Ps....I LOVE the panorama setting on my camera!!

On Saturday Pop Pop and Granny picked up The Youngun to head over to my sister's for the weekend and we pretty much just fooled around, got some groceries, that sort of thing.  Pretty much just took it easy. 

Then Sunday The Man played in his shop while I had a nice ride on Champ.  Having a great ride on a beautiful day is just so wonderful!  There is nothing like cantering along in a field with the sun shining and the breeze blowing!  God is good!! 

God Bless........... 

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Happy Birthday to My Sister...........


Author: Gina Lauchner

If sisters were flowers, I'd still pick you.

I'd let the sun shine so you'd never be blue.

I'd show the world how beautifully you grew,

with bright bold colors and strength through & through.

If sisters were flowers, I'd pick you right away.

Because you cheer me up and bring smiles each day.

If sisters were flowers, for what it's worth.

I'd always pick you ... the best sister on earth.

You were always looking out for me........

At least 'till I got big enough to sit on you.........

Always ready with a comforting arm..........

Funny how sweet and innocent you look in this picture, and I look like pure evil......

Here we are exactly 31 years ago today on your 5th goodness how time flies!  I had to think about that for a long time..........31 years, that can't possibly be right!

Happy birthday to my beautiful big sister!  I love you so very much and am thankful that God chose us to be sisters!

God Bless..............

Friday, October 22, 2010

Homeschooling Update........

My Youngun is getting close to 12 years old!

I haven't blogged about homeschooling in quite awhile, so I just thought I'd catch you up!


This is our first full school year with homeschooling.  We formally started back after Labor day and that in itself was an utter blessing.  The local districts start back the second week in August and I was never a fan of that. 

The Youngun has always been a straight A student because she was afraid of getting in trouble with the teachers.  However that didn't mean she was actually retaining any information past the day of the test. Being able to set our own curriculum and schedule has been simply amazing.  Math has always been her kryptonite but since we began homeschooling, she is finally getting her math, and really truly understanding what she is doing.  She is retaining so much of History, because we are allowing her to lead us in what she wants to learn about.  The most recent historical topic she was interested in was Amerigo Vespucci and we had a great time learning about him.  We are now on to pirates as that is where she wants to go.  By allowing her to lead, she is really learning and retaining and that's awesome!

She is doing a report on a state of her choosing each week, she's reading the Redwall Abby series of books by Brian Jacques, we are learning how to diagram sentences with ease, how to read and create maps (which she absolutely LOVES by the way), and we just finished learning all about bats for Science.  We are learning good health guidelines and about how important fresh fruits, veggies, and whole grains are to our health and development.  

As a family we love not being tied to the school's schedule.  She is a changed child, in that she's no longer so anxious and stressed about school and learning.  She is taking joy in learning again, and for that I'm so thankful. 

Homeschooling isn't for everyone I'm sure, but I'm very thankful that it's where God has led this family!

God Bless..............

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Oh Where Oh Where Have My Little Dogs Gone........

Oh where oh where can they be??  That was the burning question Sunday evening when we were cleaning up from working on the barn.  As I mentioned, Ellie seldom ever leaves my side. 

These two.....

Not so much.

After getting our left-over wood stacked in the hay barn and gathering up all our tools, Ellie and I got in Black Betty to go up to the house and unload.  It crossed my mind that I hadn't seen Ginger for a little while, but I didn't think anymore of it.  We got in the house and were getting ready to get in the shower when The Man said

"Where's Ginger and Annie?"

Dun dun duuuhhnn!  Where indeed?  We took Ellie and went for a walk down in the back, calling and looking for them to no avail.  We got in Black Betty and made "the circle" around the county roads circling our property, to no avail.  By this time it's dark and I'm worried about my girls being out in the dark with no supper.  All 4 of our dogs are house dogs mind you and I was concerned about them spending the night without the comfort of the couch!  I was also starting to panic because The Youngun wasn't home and how the holy crap was I gonna tell her her dog was gone!!

We came in, got our shower, and I started supper.  I turned the front porch light on and left the door open so if they came home that way I'd see them at the door.  We knew they'd gone the other way though, probably got down in our creek after something and just were following it.  Annie is half coon-dog so once she gets a snoot full of scent she won't come back until she's good and ready.  The Man went out to look in the pasture to see if they were at the gate waiting to be let into the yard.........nothing.  I was planning to call the local shelters Monday morning and get some flyers made up.

We ate supper and when we said grace, I asked God to keep our dogs safe.  I asked if it were His will to please bring them home, and if not for some nice person to take them in.  Right before bed I went out the back door and heard Ginger bark!  Whoo hoo!  Ellie and I walked to the pasture gate and Ginger was snuffling and whining to get through.  Annie was sitting in the barn door at that gate waiting to be let into the yard.

Needless to say they were happy to be home, Ellie was happy to see her sisters, and I was thanking God!  From now on Ginger and Annie can't go into the pasture..........if they can't be trusted to stay close, then they'll just have to lose that privilege! 

She looks the picture of innocence doesn't she? 

God Bless.......

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

And On to Sunday...........

So Saturday we built Darling Auntie's fence.  When we got home, we unloaded all our tools and such and headed to Lowe's to buy some lumber to finish trimming out my barn.  Unfortunately our little local lumber yard went bankrupt a couple years ago, so now we have to travel to the big town to get lumber and such.  We got back home with our lumber Saturday evening so we'd be all set for Sunday morning.

This is my barn before we got started.  It is sided with T 1-11 siding and where the sun hits it and it gets wet it has been curling.  I want it to last so we are trimming it out to protect the edges of the siding.

You may be wondering why no windows?  I don't stall my animals unless we have an ice storm or something.  Since they aren't locked in the barn I don't worry about it being dark in there.  Windows can be dangerous in areas where livestock can get to them.  On days when I do lock them in, I just leave the lights on.

We have the corners, top and bottom on.  Now The Man is putting up the batten strips.  This went pretty fast as we were both working on it.  I really love construction and building stuff.  The Man.....not so much, but he does it for me! ;)

The end of the barn is almost done.  We were going to use metal flashing up at the roof, but have decided to use 1x6 instead, so we have to buy (4) 14' boards for that and we will finish that and the roof line of the lean-to next weekend.

The front of the barn is done as well.  After we get the barn stained (red of course) Darlin' Deb and I will make my other flag and it will hang on that sliding door.  When we built the barn, The Man designed a really cool way to remove the bottom boards from the sliding door.  That way I can drive the lawn mower and wagon in through that door if I need to.   
Ellie is my girl and seldom leaves my side when I'm working outdoors.  That is going to factor into tomorrow's blog post...........
God blessed us with another weekend of gorgeous weather.  We are so thankful to be getting so much done around here!

God Bless........

Monday, October 18, 2010

The Building of Darling Auntie's Fence.......

It was a family affair which is always nice!
The Man and I got up around 6:30 and got Black Betty all loaded up with our fencin' supplies.  Black Betty by the way is soon going to be in the infirmary.  She's got tranny troubles, so very soon we'll be pulling it and getting it to the tranny doctor for rebuilding.

When we arrived at Auntie's house they were standin' in the yard with their coffee waitin' for us.

Pop Pop (my dad), The Man, and Uncle 4 are conflabbing on how best to get about the fencin'.

Pop Pop lookin' on as The Man digs out a posthole and Cousin Dee looks on.  Cousin Dee is the owner of the black pugs.

Uncle 4 is ready for his GQ photo spread, the post drivers of Illinois...

That's my Mama (aka Granny Bob) walking towards us and my cousin Big J looking at the camera.  His woman Little D is walking away.  We are running a string so we can make sure all the steel posts are in a nice line.

Little D and Q Baby.  Q Baby was a big help with his own personal Black and Decker tool set.

The Man and Little D putting the clips on that hold the fence to the steel posts.

The Man, Big J, and Q Baby.  Q Baby is makin' sure that his daddy and The Man are "doin' it right"!

And we are done! 

This is my dad holding Q Baby.  My dad is his Great-Uncle

Little Sassy is ready to be free!

Sassy exploring her new fence while The Man and Uncle Dino look on

Sassy says.......Thanks for the fence guys!  We love it!

God Bless....