Thursday, December 21, 2006

This is our Charlie Brown Christmas tree. Isn't it cute? It certainly was easier to decorate than a bigger one :-) Plus, it doesn't detract from my favorite little nativity set. You should see the sceptical look on Joseph's face. It's like he's asking himself, "And just what am I supposed to do with HIM??!"

Actually, that's a question we each need to ask ourselves - Just what am I supposed to do with Jesus? Christmas is the perfect time to ponder that question. Nicole Nordeman sings a song that includes, in part, the following words:

"What if He takes His place in history
With all the prophets and the kings
Who taught us love, and came in peace
But then the story ends
What then

"But what if you're wrong
What if there's more
What if there's hope you never dreamed of hoping for
What if you jump
Just close your eyes
What if the arms that catch you, catch you by surprise
What if He's more than enough
What if it's love"

I love that line, "what if the arms that catch you, catch you by surprise." The Bible says, "Underneath are the everlasting arms." He holds us whether we recognize Him or not. What a beautiful picture.

Well, I still have presents to wrap and Christmas goodies to finish in the kitchen, but I wanted to share our Charlie Brown tree with you. And, speaking of Charlie Brown, there's a wonderful book called The Parables of Peanuts, by Robert L. Short, that you might enjoy. It was published in 1968, so I don't know how difficult it would be to find ... but it would be worth your while.

Have a Merry Christmas and a Wonderful New Year

Friday, November 03, 2006

Cow Curiosities1. If you treat a cow with respect, she will still crap on you.
2. Although they are a large breed, "Yuhbig Duhmie" is not the scientific name for cows.
3. Cows have udders; in rare but documented cases, an udder can have a cow.
4. As a leftover from their days of surviving in the wild, the scent of freshly laundered clothes literally scares the crap out of cows.
5. Contrary to appearances, cows cannot "milk" to death.
6. A cow, through infection or natural mutation, can become a goat.
7. Cows have a pooping order. Pecking! I mean pecking order!
8. No two tits are alike.
9. A distant relative of the ostrich, the cow escapes detection by turning her backside to you.
10. Some years ago, a famous jingle immortalized the very essence of cowdom: "Plop Plop, Whiz Whiz; Oh, what a relief it is!"

Monday, October 09, 2006


There are many little daily occurances that make me think, "That would be good to write about on the blog!" but the thought is always easier than the sitting down at the computer at the end
of a busy day and composing an interestsing story. There has been plenty going on since we got back from vacation, so let's see if I can relate a few of the hi-lights.

It's calving season. Who
knew there was such a thing?! The typical ratio of girls (heifers) to boys (bulls) is 1:1. So far this fall, of about 16 calves born, only 6 have been heifers. The bulls are sold when they're about a week old, but the heifers are raised to become our milkers in two years. In other words, baby heifers are our future livelihood. Come on, girls! We're counting on you!!

Seems like it's alwa
ys kitten season on the farm. One of the gray cats in the milk barn has 2 new, fat, furry babies. We have named them Shag and Mo'Hair:
Kit Carson has had another baby (in the junk yard, of course) and her name is Kitty Carlysle:
You might remember one of Carson's spring babies, Sonny, who fell in the bucket of oil. Well, he has recovered handsomely! Here you will see him curled up on the hay barn floor, with Groucho snoozing in the milk pan behind him. Creamsicle, the only one of the Soda Shoppe Kittens who hasn't been adopted by a loving family, has fun playing with her mom in front of the milk barn.
Tripod, the quintessence of
motherhood, is picutred here with 5 babies wrapped around her. Two of them are her own, but all of them are too old to be nursing. Don't tell Tripod that!

With some help from family and friends, Weldon has cho
pped the corn and got it stored in the silos. He grows the best corn in the county and probably the state and maybe even the nation! Although the corn wasn't as tall as last year's, the yield was better. The chopped corn (silage) is the staple of the cows' diet. One field of "tropical" corn remains to be chopped after the first frost.

This past week, Weldon and I went to his uncle's and picked about 5 gallons of scuppernongs. Here's what Wikipedia has to say about them:

Some muscadines in a bowl; the green ones are scuppernongs
Some muscadines in a bowl; the green ones are scuppernongs

A scuppernong is a large type of muscadine, a type of grape native to the present-day southeastern United States. It usually has a greenish or bronze color, and is similar in appearance and texture to a white grape, but rounder and about 50% larger.

Its name comes from its original place of production, Scuppernong, North Carolina, where it was first grown during the 17th century, a name itself tracing back to the Algonquin word ascopo for the sweet bay tree.

Several small green seeds are found in each grape. The skin is very thick and inedible. To eat a scuppernong, one must put the grape between the front teeth, stem end pointing into the mouth, then squeeze gently to burst the grape. The pulp is thick and viscous. The seeds, which are very bitter and unpleasant tasting, can be extracted or spit out. Some people choose to swallow the seeds.

The part that says the skins are inedible is not true; it's just that they're very tough and bitter. Last year I made a scuppernong pie, including the skins, and it was delicious. This year I made jelly and preserves, both of which turned out quite ymmy. I froze 5 or 6 quarts of juice and also have enough grapes left to make a pie ... if I can get up the gumption to go to all that work again :-)

It sounds like we work a lot, doesn't it? We do, but, for the most part, we enjoy it! Plus, we squeeze in a little entertainment every now and then. Yesterday we went to see a college production of the musical "Beehive." I had never heard of it, but it was cute and fun ... the music of the female singers of the 60s.

The fall weather is upon us. Although I don't like the cold weather, we have the beautiful colors of the changing leaves to look forward to. Also, the cold weather isn't as cold as Minnesota and it doesn't last nearly so long. Ahh, there's always a bright side.

Saturday, September 09, 2006


That was the usual response when we told friends that we were planning to vacation in Minnesota. We spent August 19-26 in my beautiful home state (Weldon’s first time there and his first vacation in 13 years), and the following synopsis and pictures will give you a glimpse of what's in Minnesota.

For one week, WE were in Minnesota, doing the touristy thing....

Minnesota is known as the Land of 10,000 Lakes or the Land of Sky Blue Waters. And to go with all that water? Perfectly warm, sunny days! We were smart to not vacation in January :-)

took an informational cruise on Lake Superior (very impressive). We visited the Great Lakes Aquarium, the nation's only all-freshwater aquarium, and drove a few miles along the “North Shore” so we could stop and dip our toes in the cold water.

We took a train ride along the St. Croix River

and visited Lake Itasca where we walked across the headwaters of the mighty Mississippi.

We tried to stay off the main highways and always looked for a scenic route, where we saw farms ,

peat bogs ,

swamps ,

forests ,

and interesting weeds that Weldon couldn’t name.

There are agates in Minnesota, and Weldon learned the fine art of hunting the elusive gem. If he couldn’t find an agate, he was happy just picking up PLRs (pretty little rocks).

Although the state has all kinds of wildlife, big and small, the best we could do was hear the cry of the loon and see a bald eagle and a few deer.

Weldon saw a moose, but he doesn’t have a picture to prove it :-)

The MN State Fair is in Minnesota! Weldon was disappointed that Machinery Hill doesn’t exist anymore, but at least he got to visit the “Moo Booth.” Although the "real farm" milking cows wouldn't be there until the following week, we got to see the "4H cows" and sheep, poultry, rabbits, horses, and all the other attractions that make up the MN State Fair.

I was thrilled to find that Tiny Tim (also known as Tom Thumb) Donuts are every bit as good as I remembered,

and we saw the (90#) butter sculptures of Princess Kay and her attendants!

Now you're jealous, aren't you?!

Most important of all, my FAMILY is in Minnesota!!

What a fabulous vacation! Can we do it again? Can we?? Can we???