Monday, December 08, 2008

Where is Ayden??
Haylee is on the left, Aniston on the right:
Great grandma Edith is on the left, Weldon on the right :)
Aniston & Haylee are in Grandpa's arms!
But where is Ayden?
He's in New York ... sitting on Santa's lap!

Wednesday, December 03, 2008

Yes, the newest "star" has arrived! Aniston was born shortly before midnight on November 19, weighing about 6 pounds 4 ounces. Her parents are Weldon's middle daughter Jennifer and her husband Scott. We visited the happy family this past Sunday and were able to hold and hug and squeeze the little darling.

Although her eyes are closed in these pictures, Aniston was very alert, her little eyes darting every which way, taking in all the sights of her new world. Talk about an early Christmas present :-)
Congratulations to all and to all a Good Night!

Friday, November 14, 2008

... All Boy ...
Marshall loves to participate in sports: soccer, wrestling, tennis, golf, bowling; and this year was his first try at football. I got to see him "play" during their pre-season jamboree in September.

On Saturday, November 8, I was able to attend his team's Football Awards Banquet. I was surprised by how many people were there, but parents love to see their kids and grandkids do well and achieve their goals. We enjoyed a good lunch and cake, and then came the awards.
Each of the players got a trophy and a few, including Marshall, got perfect attendance/good sportsmanship certificates.
The team's only win for the year was in a pre-season game. This was a young team (most never having played before), so the coach has big hopes for next year.
Although he's "all boy," Marshall has a sweet and tender heart, which I hope he'll continue to develop. (As a grandmother, I'm entitled to such sentiments.) Anyway, girls go gaga over a sweet guy - just ask Weldon :-)

Thursday, November 06, 2008

WOOHOO!!! :-)
Weldon had always hoped to brick the outside of the house and we have been discussing it for quite some time. Last spring and summer we spent many Sunday afternoons driving around looking at brick houses and deciding what we like and don't like, and we made many trips to Pine Hall Brick. Who knew there was so much to learn about brick, mortar, and the ways they could be put together! The bricks we chose are called Old Irvington - an over-sized, tumbled brick. That means they're bigger than "normal" bricks and they look old and beat up :-)
After a lot of work and preparation on Weldon's part, our plans have begun to be realized and the results are more beautiful than I could have imagined.
Siding off, porch torn up:
Brick & mortar delivered:
Weldon made the tools to "rake" the mortar joints:
Ready to start:
The first brick is laid:
The local yokels pretend to work:
These guys know what they're doing and they do it well!
After just 2 1/2 days of work, the brick work is almost finished.
Back: and front:
There's still lots of work to be done. Next up, the masons will return and work on the pillars for the porch and carport.
The first evening after the house was finished this far, I took Jasmine out to do her evening duties and when I turned around, my heart did a little skip 'cuz I didn't recognize the house :-)
Stay tuned ....

Friday, October 31, 2008

Weldon's oldest daughter, Kathryn, and her husband David and daughter Ashley welcomed little Haylee into the world on Thursday night, October 23. She weighed 7 pounds 4 ounces and was just long enough. (Sorry, I didn't write down all the details.) Great grandma Edith and I went to see the newest addition to the family on Tuesday afternoon. Weldon couldn't go because he still had a cough from his dragging-on-forever cold :-(

We all agree: Haylee Marie is a keeper!!!

Thursday, October 09, 2008

Ayden made his entrance into the world on August 22, 2008, weighing in at 6 pounds 4 ounces. Congratulations to Mom Melinda and Dad Joseph and everyone who is glad to have a handsome little boy in the family. Since they live in New York, we haven't been able to hug and squeeze Weldon's first grandson yet, but we have seen lots of adorable pictures. Here are a few for you to enjoy.
Just a few hours old...
Are you sure about this???
It's all good.
Four weeks already?
Six weeks old and ready to take on the world!
Come see us soon, little guy! Bring your mom and dad, too!!

Monday, September 29, 2008

This is "calving season" and, as of this writing, 11 babies have been born: 7 heifers and 4 bulls. The first little heifer was born when Hurricane Hanna blew through here,
so Weldon named her Hanna.
We don't usually name the calves, but he got us started!
The next was Tuesday ,
then Tina, then Nellie Bell, and Maaaae.
We haven't named the 2 newest ones yet, and another is due to be born any minute.

This year I am helping Edith with the feeding of the baby calves morning and evening and washing the bottles and buckets when we're done. She still does all of the work with the older heifers,
but maybe I'm helping to lighten her load in some small measure.

If you've read my blog from the beginning, you know that when I first came to the farm, very few of the cats had names. I started naming the new kittens as they were born: Kit Carson and Big Boy, Spitz, Kitten Kaboodle ... ; and then I started naming the cats that had been here for years: Hatfield & McCoy, Big Mama, Tripod, Pretty Boy. Someday I'd like to make a list of all the cats I have named.
The funny thing is, now everyone helps to name the kittens!
This year, even Edith got into the act by naming this little cutie:
Uno :-)

This spring the coyotes got more than their fair share of our cats and kittens.
In spite of that (and a number of other catastrophes), we are not experiencing a kitty shortage.
A couple of cats have had litters of 5 kittens this year!
Spitz set a new farm record by giving birth to 7 babies.
Unfortunately, only 3 survived, all girls.
Pictured, left to right: Sparky, Spice, Spots, and momma Spitz.

I didn't know that some cats like corn on the cob. Every time I sat outside to husk corn,
here came Oreo, looking for a handout.

I don't think a day goes by without some sort of cat or kitten shenanigans.
They certainly bring a lot of joy (and sorrow!) to our days.

Tuesday, September 09, 2008

MN Vacation 2008
We had five wonderful, relaxing days in Minnesota, August 19-23. The travel was enjoyable, the weather perfect, and food, friends, and family the best!
After leaving the MSP airport early Tuesday morning, we took the l-o-n-g way to my brother Rick's place (in Chisago City) - by way of St. Cloud :-) Lots of farming country (very dry there, too) and a big equipment dealership for Weldon to drool in.

In getting from one place to another, we always tried to take the back roads so we could enjoy the scenery.
On Tuesday evening, Rick & Kathy fixed a fabulous supper on the grill. Later, while roasting marshmallows, Rick took a sip out of his cup and there was the cutest little tree frog on the rim. Kathy wanted to get a photo, too, but just as she was ready to snap his picture, he took an amazing leap ... right into the coals. N-o-o-o-o-o :-(
Wednesday morning they took us by this neat old round barn, built from a kit sold by Sears.
From Rick's we made a leisurely trip to my brother Dave's in Mora. (You'll have to get out your MN map.) Dave & Judy's place became our "bed & breakfast" for 2 nights. While there, we had a mini family reunion with my parents, Judy's sister, my Aunt Lois, and Don & Lil (my uncle & aunt). We ate lots of food (fish fry - mmmm), had cow races on the wii, played dominos, worked on a jigsaw puzzle, and sat around and talked a lot. Such fun!

On Thursday we went to our one-and-only tourist attraction on this trip: The Hinckley Fire Museum and monument in, you guessed it, Hinckley.

We journeyed south to Rush City to meet Tavis, a guy Weldon "met" through his beloved tractor nut site. He told us about his work (trains!!), took us to lunch, showed us his home, and gave us some strawberry jam.

What a [tall] guy!!
From there we continued to Stark (hope you have a good map!) to see my best friend from Cambridge High School days. I hadn't seen Linda & Jack in probably 35 years!! (If I were the crying type, I would be have been crying tears of joy.) They quit dairy farming just a few years ago, so Weldon felt right at home.
Back to Dave's for the night. Friday morning (after a delicious and nutritious breakfast) we took Ma & Pa and Maddie (their dog) and started our trip down to my youngest brother Randy's place. We took the scenic route (of course) and stopped briefly at Rush Lake.

Then we stopped in North Branch to visit with my former mother-in-law Esther. She is 93 years old and still going strong!!
At Randy & Jane's we had a family get-together with all three of my brothers and sisters-in-law and some of my nieces and nephews. The biggest surprise here was that "the twins" showed up: Joanne & Jeanne from my youngest years in Kettle River. Unbelievable!!!! (Ma had arranged this.) They couldn't stay long, so we talked really fast. If I were the crying type, I would have been crying tears of joy :-)
Here is Randy, commiserating with his daughter Amanda
and Great-grandma Naomi, sharing quality time with her newest great-grandbabies.
Saturday morning, Weldon went to spend some work time with Jeff Winberg, whom we met 2 years ago while in MN.
While he was getting his farm fix, "the girls" went to get their nails done and hit a few yard sales. I acted as photo-journalist, and the tell-all expose will be published later this year.
Then it was time to head to the airport, turn in the rental car, and sit back and enjoy the flight home. Aaahhh - vacations are a wonderful thing!!!