Sunday, September 30, 2012

Poppie's great pumpkin, Dad's garden, siblings reunited.

Poppie harvested his great pumpkin this week, it was sort of like the birth of a new child. He was very proud of it. He had to tip the wheel barrow over to get it in the wheel barrow. He rolled it down to the house and parked it in front of the deck. I took numerous photos of it all nestled in the wheel barrow. Cubby posed by it. Later once we got it in the house Bubbles sat on it as Yogie posed. Poppie unfortunately left it unattended in the wheel barrow before it got in the house, the naughty little goat brigade nibbled on it. It nearly broke Poppie's heart. They nibbled it and scarred his dear child. I was not a happy thing to see. Bug tried to lift it but was unable to just pick it up, they finally rolled it onto a blanket and Bug drug it into the house. They are going to try to figure out how to weigh it, whole is probably not and option, I am thinking I will weigh it in pieces after we chop it up. I am going to take one final photo of it with Poppie before it is chopped, the nibble marks will not be seeable as they are on one side. Poppie is going to whine but I will have my picture.

My dad's birthday turned out great. I got there just after the other sibling began to arrive. Dad took me out to his garden to show me his wondreous aray of squash, melon's, watermelons and all his other many harvests. He had several banana squash and as Lady had asked me to asked for one I got one of those. He had some nice watermelons and cantalope that we had for dinner. He had five or six hubbards that are 50ish pounds apiece. My dad was his old self, which is nice, he is usually at his most normal when several of the kids are there together, I think it makes him more comfortable and less in the new or now. It was a wonderful visit with him. My mom was at her most lovely and that is always nice. All of the siblings were there, I don't think we have all been together in probably 10 or 15 years, maybe more. I forgot my camera but hopefully some of my sibling will bless me with photos. We got to take a all family photo and that will be something I will cherish. Not all of the grands or the greatgrands were there, Mokie was the oldest grand there, she is the 6th from the top so lots couldn't come. All the in laws (well except Poppie, as he was sick in his chair at home with stomach flu and cramps) were there too, even the two ex in laws that are still the significant others. It was a wonderful day, the most pleasant I have had with my siblings in years. All were there just because they wanted to be and all loved each other, there was no fighting among the grands and will that many littles all together that was nice too. I did not have the most gray hair among the ones of us that are all natural, I have two sibs that have much more than me. Of course one of the brothers in law had to make it a competition. Little Brother manned the grill and made sure all were filled up. Lots of good food, good family all in good company.

We stopped by Grandpa's on the way home, he gave me some cabbage, tomatoes and peppers, I am going to barter him some soap. Grandma has had a bloodclot and will not be able to go to PA in October, hopefully they will be able to reschedule to Christmas time. She was in a good mood, and sometimes those times are far between. She had actually blamed Cubbie earlier in the week for kicking her and causing the bloodclot. Cubbie can be as naughty as they come but she is not a child that kicks people so it had made Son and Mokie unhappy that Grandma is not more loving to their kids and would make such an accusation even in her pain. I think Grandma had had time to reconsider her accusation. She was especially nice to Cubbie, which was good, while we were there. So needless to say when I come home from Church, which Poppie won't be attending, I will add more cabbage to my sauerkraut, make more salsa, and begin the process of freezing and canning the great pumpkin. I put it in everything that I make, spaghetti, pancakes, soups, breads, cakes, and anything else I want. Poppie's only rule is "I don't want to know its there, I just want to be obliviously ingnorant."  Funny, if you know it's somewhere in the food can you really still be oblivious?..... tomorrow.

Saturday, September 29, 2012

Yesterday my dad was 75 today we come together to surprise him.

How does one look back on a long life?  How do the ones that love him do it?  I saw a lady in the store yesterday that I have never really known well, but have know a long time.  I on one occasion was at her home, years ago, and I have not been an EMT in 9 years, to help take her husband to the hospital.  He at the time was just become truly ill and had just started down the path to become long term bed ridden.  I saw her in the store and took a moment to tell her I was sorry for her loss she has just lost him.  I told her I was sorry and asked her if in the end it was a blessing and asked if she was okay.  She said it was truly a blessing that he had passed on to the Lord, She was fine and maybe she is but she is tired and now will have a chance to heal and become physically strong again.  She looked so frail and worn down.  She loved her husband with all her heart and took care of him to the end.  It helped that she had been a nurse but it could not have been easy on any level.  She surely can attest to a life time of loving one man, and a life time of sharing her life with him. She will miss her love, and I am sure in moments miss the time she cared for him in his illness.  My grandfather did this for my grandmother.   I think that a life long love ends in this way quite often.  Oh, not all the time there are those events where the truly aged live a life of almost no health issues then go in a quick manner in the end.  One of my childhood memories is my father telling us of a couple he and my mom meant in northern Idaho.  They had just gone to a new Church with my grandparents.  They had become quite fond of an older couple in their late 70's there, they asked them to dinner on one Sunday shortly after they meant them.  The couple politely declined.  The older gentlemen said "oh, we couldn't we always go to see the folks."  My parents and grands thought they meant they went to the cemetery to visit them but no, they actually went to dinner with their folks on every Sunday.  They at the time were the oldest married couple in the US.  Paul Harvey learned about them later and used them as an example of a long loving marriage.  He said he would start to look for a couple that had a longer marriage and when he found it he would stop.  It took him 50 years to find a couple that broke their record.  They were both well into their 100's and I am sure lived a long and happy life and marriage. My dad used them as an example at ever marriage I ever heard him officiate.

I think of my father today, he is not that old in the realm of truly old people but for our family he is quite old.  His grandfather and his father both died at 67 from heart attacks form heart defects that are genetic in our family and before modern heart surgery was unsurpassable.  He actually had had two heart attacks before he turned 67, the second lead to his triple bypass surgery 7 years ago.  He has aunts that are into their one hundreds but the men, his father being one of them didn't live that long.  His brother has had a quadruple bypass.  He has been many things in his life, a child that lived through the depression.  A young adult that made his living horse logging, then stepping into his fathers job while his father spent six months in Warm springs hospital for tuberculosis.  He worked the job of a man as an 18 year old, took the check home and gave it to his mother so she could feed her kids.  He got another job after his father came home and only missed 11 days of work the rest of his working years, those 11 days were the days he spent in the hospital and recuperating after his first heart attack.  He was a trapper, and then a coon hunter but in 1972 his dogs could no longer feed themselves with the harvest of the hides, due to changing laws, so he had to give that up.  He was a wanderer and took his family from town to town to keep a job and feed them.  He never took a dime from the government in the form of foodstamps or welfare.  He paid his taxes and lived from pay check to pay check. He raised, well is in the process of raising the last three, twelve children.  He has loved God all his life, he has loved my mom through thick and thin and I think there has been alot of thin in his life.  He had dreams, I am sure, but he never sought them out, he had kids to raise and dreams come second to raising kids.  He has been raising kids for 52 year in a couple of weeks, well maybe an additional 5 being as he did help his mom with his siblings. 

Today we come together to honor his life, the life he has given to us kids without complaint and without meanness, he is a fine man.  He is becoming a lost man in many ways and his mind wanders and sometimes you have to tell him over and over what you want him to hear, and in many ways he never grasps the concept you are talking about if it is new.  He never did anything magnificent in his life or wondrous but he loved his kids, his wife and his Lord.  He will get a reward in heaven to match the love he gave in this life when his life ends.  I am my father's daughter, I can be opinionated, love history, have a steadfast political view, love my kids, and the ones that come my way that I can share my love with, love my husband with instincts of a mother bear protecting her young, and I love the Lord my God.  That is a testimony to the things my father gave me and the love he has had for me my whole life.  Today we will sing happy birthday to the man who made us who we are, as his children, and the Lord will smile down on our gathering.... tomorrow.    

Friday, September 28, 2012

Looking forward to the end of political commericals are you?

I read a facebook status from one of my friends the other day.  She was telling one and all that she had had her mindup from the beginning so no status forwards were going to make any difference to her vote so therefore she was hiding all political jargon on her facebook.  She had assured us we all had the right to freedom of speech but she was not listening.  I agree with her right, and thought she may have had a point but.....  Another of my friends had said the same thing in a different manner a week or so earlier.  She was not really concerned about the status of her vote either she had her mind made up as well but was tired of the mud.  I agreed with her rights as well.  It is funny to me that both of my friends are dyed in the wool embedded in their parties and no one was ever going to change their vote to begin with.  They are on the exact opposite sides of the voting spectrum as well.  They are both then well and truly encamped in the very decided voters camps, the ones no one, at this point, are trying to reach, their votes are a sure thing and they cancel each other out.  What I did find ironic is that their statements began to wear on me, not either as individual statements because I would imagine that most people, or most of the people that are politically aware all the time are tired of hearing the jargon because we have been connected to it for months, or maybe years, or maybe we just never aren't right on top of it in our lives.  What their statements did make me contemplate about is the undecided people, the people who don't plug in to politics but for a few minutes, or days or at most a few weeks every four years.  My friends who are both very caring and very much aware of the importance of the out come of this elections, more than most, and who want that out come to go their way, had made statements that was so counter productive to their wants for this election. If they had but looked past the personal pain of the on going inundation of views. Both of these dear friends care deeply about the path our country is on and where it will go in the future. Both of these friends want desperately for their party to win, and both will care much more than the undecideds when one of their agendas does not win and the others does on NOV 6th. 

I think that when you no longer care about the noise, or maybe it is when the noise has become more important than your beliefs and you give up the fight you lose to the other side in this.  Yes, the jargon is horrible, some of my facebook friends and my friends in real conversations go to far and use bad or mean wording to get their point across, or in trying to get their point across.  Some of them have no patients for the "idiotic" ideas that their friends, have and spout about.  They genuinely no longer want to hear any more political adds but don't they do a disservice to the ones that only are just starting to care by checking out on the subject?  Don't they have a duty to explain their point of view to the newly interested, don't they want to have a chance at talking in a peaceful and reasonable manner to some one who doesn't know what the politicians stand for?  Don't they have a duty to explain what at Liberal is to the unknowing, or what the conservatives want for our children?  Politics is and can be a storm in a teapot, it can be a hurricane coming down on the Innocent,  it can be the mean streets if you let it.  It can also be a place of understanding and a place to share your beliefs with someone who is just dipping their toe into a greater world than themselves and their immediate lives.  The way you react to people wanting to learn can destroy or uplift that person, who for the first time, wants to know what all the hullabaloo is all about.  Did you become the political expert you are in a vacuum?  Did no one have to teach you what the parties were about?  Are you just a blind sheep that followed your families politics and vote that way because you are supposed to and are trained up to do so?  Do you have a political view that is the product of knowledge and true belief in a platform, an ideology or way of life?  If you do, shouldn't you try to help those who don't find theirs?  Shouldn't you still be open to having a conversation with someone that might value your opinion and want to know why you vote the way you do?  So to those of you that no longer want to hear it because you know who you are voting for and don't care about the other sides point of view or care about helping others find their point of view. I am truly sorry for the inconvenience you find the politic of facebook and the media to be, but I think you will deserve the outcome of the vote especially if you check out and don't try to enable others to find their voice in this democracy.... tomorrow.

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Berkshire piglets, Daisy and Danielle, wood, gardens end, a cornucopia of life.

Fall is upon us and hopefully it is a long Indian Summer, we still have fire wood to get, and yard work to complete.  Poppie spent the day pulling all the plants in his garden a wondrous harvest for such a late start.  I spent yesterday making sauerkraut.  I may be adding to it this morning as I have more cabbage to add.  Professor and Herbalist sent us Daisy and Danielle, queen la manchas, to add to our goat herd so as I don't want to have more than a set amount of goats, as I couldn't feed them I am going to have to reduce the herd.  Hay is a bit hard to find this year due to no rain, fires, and drought so no one is buying goats so we will harvest some of the younger does as we would normally harvest withers, as weanling it is about the same so we are making out our harvest list.  My Friend the Crazy Goat Lady from Polson recently told me she had purchased a breeding pair of Berkshire pigs.  They are a heritage breed I had been hoping to acquire.  She was a little upset that when she got them they had already been bred.  She had wanted to get them settled in and made to be part of her farm then breed them.  This weekend she called to tell me, in an excited manner, she gets excited about her animals more than any one I know because they are literally her life.  She had 9, three born dead,  she ended up with 2 boars and 4 sows.  She is going to eat two so had 4 available.  I made a killer deal with her for a pair,  I won't be able to breed them together so will be looking for a pig to breed to them that I can afford but in the mean time I can breed them to mine and get 1/2 breeds and 3/4 bred Berkshires.  I am so excited.  I truly like the look of the Berkshires and they, being heritage pigs, will give me more lard.  I won't be able to have babies from them for a good year but it is a start down the path to heritage piglets.  That will be great for 4-h.  The girls just started 4-h and will be in the program for years to come.  I think it will allow us a better product to offer people interested in market pigs and 4-h piglets as well

Fall is such a cornucopia of events, animal and things to do.  We have wood to collect, usually we have it all collected by now but the summer got away from us and we just didn't do it.  I like to collect it in the fall, the mornings are crisp and cool.  The away time to collect it is such a nice down time.   The work is hard but rewarding and soul cleansing.  I find it very soul cleansing to do something just because it is to be done and nothing is more peaceful and rewarding than being in the woods that God made for us..... tomorrow.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

A devistating accident stretches the resources very thin for our little town.

Poppie was taking the kids to school this morning, at the bottom of our hill where the interstate passes by there was a horrendous accident.  A small SUV was smashed in and you could tell it was bad.  There were two cars on our road stopped help, presumable, and two cars stopped on the interstate.  One of my friends heroically jumped the fence and started running to the scene. From the other vehicle on our road out stepped a woman who had nothing better to do than drain resources that were soon to be in great need and we have so few here.  She left her kids in her car and went to the back of her vehicle and lay on the ground in a fetal position whaling.  The car in the accident was not local in the end from a state not even next to ours so she had no possible connection to the vehicle.  The heroic woman was on the phone as she ran to the scene.  The useless woman wasn't on the phone, wasn't ministering to her own children much less trying to aid the dying children and soon took up valuable resource when one of the next cars that stopped had to pat her and see if she was hurt.  Eventually one of the ministers in town came to the scene, at a high rate of speed, to comfort her, he wasn't there to comfort the people in the vehicle however he was there for the woman.  How very sad.  The wreck was a fatality, the ambulance in our little town had to come and go back and forth to the scene three times apiece.  An infant died and more injuries were sustained, I have not actually heard an official count.  I am saddened by the publican that stole resources from the dying to draw attention to herself and wasn't even of comfort to her own children who must have been terrified left alone in the vehicle as their mother writhed on the ground.  I am so proud of the woman who did the best she could to call for help and administer to the injured and dying.  I am proud say I know the one and ashamed to have ever meant the other.  Tragedy brings out the best in some and confirms the rotten in others.  I pray for all involved, the hero, the children left to comfort themselves, the dead and the injured and even for the woman who truly needs to get down on her knees and pray for her short comings.  It was bad enough that she didn't help but worse that she stole resources from the dying.....  Poppie didn't stop to block the road and be a spectator, he had a whole vehicle of children that were in need of his comfort and he, seeing that the ambulance was coming continued on least he be in the way.... The scene was described to me by three different people, who passed by, and did not stop and get in the way of precious resources at this scene. All three had the same accounting of what unfolded.

We have since heard the vehicle had six kids and three adults in it.  None of the people in the car were wearing seat belts, it was a roll over accident. The baby died, one person was sent to Seattle, and all the rest are in unknown conditions.  The Lord be with them in this their hour of need.  We rarely have occasion to be face to face with a tragedy that plays out in front of us.  The Lord hold them in his arms and his will be done... tomorrow.

Friends, being one does not depend on the response of the person only your own.

I have had occasion to speak in depth with two of my siblings in the last week.  I don't actually hear from most of my siblings all that regularly, we are a huge family all with complicated lives and lots of things that pull us in so many directions.  My mom has also called me several times this week, I literally can't remember that last time she called me prior to this week. She is working on a surprise party for my dad's 75th birthday and had to call me to clarify the invitees several times.  It started with no adult grandkids being invited, then it was certain ones that were welcome and now I guess all the grands and greatgrands are welcome.  That makes it three interactions with my family that are out of the normal in a week, things do happen in threes.  I did enjoy the talks I had with my two siblings, it ended up that maybe they just needed some one to listen while they talked.  I am actually fairly good at that, not that most people who think I talk all the time would guess that, but I really am.  It took years of training, formally, and just learning to love people and let them tell you what they want and need from you.  I have two friends that are single ladies, one emails and one calls, that regularly just need some one to talk to.  I also have a crazy goat lady that calls once in awhile to chat, I think she is one of the loneliest people I know, sadly it has been awhile since I have heard from her.  I am rarely the initiator of these conversations because I think that they just need the freedom to contact me when they are in need.  I am not usually well received when I contact them anyway, odd but nice that they just contact me as a sounding board, sort of an anonymous person that they feel secure talking with when their worlds spins out of wack.

The Preacher commented recently in one of his messages about being a friend.  We are called to be a friend by God, to love our neighbor as ourselves.  The girls recently were advised by some one that they were to love God first, Others second and themselves last.  I am thinking the person advising them either meant, service not love, and maybe the girls messed it up, or is just biblically wrong.  I had to talk to the girls and explain J-O-Y to them.  Service to Jesus-Others-Yourself, God calls us to serve God first, others then ourselves, this is true; but God calls us to Love God first and our neighbors as ourselves.  No one can love anyone if they don't first love themselves.  I digress.  Anyway,  the message was about being a friend.  He said that being a friend is what we are called to do, the acceptance of that friendship doesn't lessen our being a friend.  That was a real starting place for me to contemplate.  I had never really thought of friendship in quite that light before.  We usually think of friendship in reference to a commitment that is equal or a mutual thing.  I had never thought of it as a one sided venture, well not in a good light anyway.  I had in my failing thought of it in the past as something that I felt I had put work into but the other side hadn't. I had felt resentment or anger at being what I felt was being unappreciated; but I never thought of it as something that I could do for others just because I want to be a friend and give friendship even if that friendship was not returned or even wanted.  It was so enlightening to think of friendship as an act of mine. not dependent upon reaction or commitment from anyone but as something I was giving just to give..... I am sure that that is what is meant by loving your neighbor as yourself but it was such a different concept that it had fallen on deaf ears for so much of my life.  To be a friend regardless, is to love your neighbor...... tomorrow.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

The Ladies are studying Zucchini verses in the bible, they are excited to memorize.

I have said before the we are putting the Lord first in our lives. We get up at 6 every morning and read the Lords word.  We have chosen as our first area of reading, the New Testament and Gospel.  The first few days we had sleepy eyed girls that lay on the bed with their eyes trying to slip closed, I caught them many a time checking their eyelids for cracks.  We have not been doing it for several weeks, we had read Proverbs earlier in the summer but we didn't do it as our first thing in the morning.  We are now putting the Lord as literally our first thoughts in the morning and it is become a great habit, habits are great things or bad and we are instilling a good one.  We have read through all of Matthew and are well into Mark.  We read through the parable of the sower the second time when we decided that it will be the girls first memory verses, self imposed.  Each got to pick their choice of Matthew or Mark to learn. 

Matthew 13:3-9

King James Version (KJV)
3 And he spake many things unto them in parables, saying, Behold, a sower went forth to sow;
4 And when he sowed, some seeds fell by the way side, and the fowls came and devoured them up:
5 Some fell upon stony places, where they had not much earth: and forthwith they sprung up, because they had no deepness of earth:
6 And when the sun was up, they were scorched; and because they had no root, they withered away.
7 And some fell among thorns; and the thorns sprung up, and choked them:
8 But other fell into good ground, and brought forth fruit, some an hundredfold, some sixtyfold, some thirtyfold.
9 Who hath ears to hear, let him hear.

Mark 4:3-10

King James Version (KJV)
3 Hearken; Behold, there went out a sower to sow:
4 And it came to pass, as he sowed, some fell by the way side, and the fowls of the air came and devoured it up.
5 And some fell on stony ground, where it had not much earth; and immediately it sprang up, because it had no depth of earth:
6 But when the sun was up, it was scorched; and because it had no root, it withered away.
7 And some fell among thorns, and the thorns grew up, and choked it, and it yielded no fruit.
8 And other fell on good ground, and did yield fruit that sprang up and increased; and brought forth, some thirty, and some sixty, and some an hundred.
9 And he said unto them, He that hath ears to hear, let him hear.

They have to read it after our reading and every day come with more of the verses memorized.  Each have about 6 verses to learn. They will both do Luke as their next memory verse to finish the series. We have discussed the meaning of the verses several times and each time we tried to put it into terms that a child would understand.  They are little farmers and sowing was something they could associate with.  They weren't really sure what a hundredfold meant so I explained it to them in terms they did grasp.  I told them that the farmer, like dad, planted a seed, we decided it would be a zucchini seed.  I asked them what had happened when dad planted that one little zucchini seed.  They said it grew into a great big plant and then it started giving us zucchinis.  I asked them how many zucchini did the plant have on it?  They said more and more everyday, more than they could remember.  I said was it 30, 60 or 100.  They felt sure that there could have been that many on that one plant.  I told them that God sowed the seed of faith, one little seed and that in the right person it could grow to some one sharing that faith thrityfold, sixtyfold or a hundredfold.  That that one little zucchini became a hundred fruits because of good ground, good watering and good care, that their faith could be like that zucchini, good nurturing, pray, believing and sharing their faith could grow into a hundredfold of people growing their own seed of faith....  They like the zucchini verses and chose them to be their first self initiated memory verses... a little seed planted.

Busy day ahead but we started it on the right path, the Lord first, have a great day and I hope you water and nurturer you seed... tomorrow.

Monday, September 24, 2012

Yummy Key Lime Pie, avocados to become guacamole, such wondrous things to do, oh my.

I don't think I ever actually made a Key Lime Pie before, I think I had made the substitute one with the lemon out of the bottle but I have never actually had Key Limes before.  That was one of the wonderful items to come out of my Bountiful Basket.  I am a pretty brave vegetable eater, love my garden, try to try all the new ones I get opportunity to buy.  I don't always get to buy some as they are out of my price range generally if they are not the ordinary ones.  I don't usually get to participate in the things the come along that most middle class and upper economically people take for granted.  This made me unresponsive when I first heard about Bountiful Baskets, I thought it would be like the other fruit and veggie opportunities I hear about well out of my price range.  Lady poked me a number of times before I got on board with checking it out; from the beginning I was interested in helping others in the community get it here even if it was something I couldn't afford. I finally checked it out and it is something that I can participate in, I am an in between, I am not middle class or above, and I am not in the food stamp range.  We are in the range of budget, budget, budget, so I work actively at getting good sales and ordering my lugs on sale or getting them at the fair fruit and veggie seller, or using Poppies garden as effectively as I can.  If any one knows me and they start a conversation with "would you like some" I stop them right there if I can't I absolutely know someone who can so I take any and all offers.  That is why I am sold on the Bountiful Baskets, they are affordable for even me, and if they are affordable for me they are affordable for most anyone.  I do hope they eventually allow EBS people as well because their kids need good quality fruits and veggies too.  I have read that is something that may happen in the future, so that is good. 

I got to use my Key Limes, and experience a new fruit.  I am using my avocados and limes today to make a guacamole, I am not sure I have ever had these avocados before I only ever got to buy the Haas.  I am excited to try them, adventures in new fruits isn't that exciting.  I do like that this is something else to look forward to every month.  I am a collard connoisseur so using them up will be great.  Booboo can't get enough of the apples as she is an apple a day girl, don't you know. The yams will be baked and eaten as well, I am so blessed to have little girls that love, love, love veggies that most kids wouldn't even try. I am a bit proud of that as we have to work at getting veggies, funny how so many people put down the poor in our society because they don't eat right but then don't actually realize that the cost of vegetable is so much more than mac and cheese, hamburger helper or top ramein.  Poppie works hard at gardening so we have the opportunity to feed our kids veggies, and I don't mean the canned offerings at the store, those are the best poor people get to try but everyday some nutritiontist tells us how horrible they are, isn't that a disconnect?  I pick apples on the rail road right away, huckleberries in the woods, elderberries as well, choke cherries too, to get for my kids what the people who condemn the poor, who "eat wrong', take for granted.  Eating right is a privilege in many respects and so many people don't realize that they just condemn with out knowledge.  Exercise is free though, well if you don't do it at the gym, so the poor do need to have responsibility in their weight as well but not in the way the rich, who don't have a clue, understand. 

I am just happy that for once their is an opportunity for all, or most all, to participate in a really good program for their children and themselves. and can't wait to be a part of advancing this program if I can.... tomorrow.

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Bountiful Baskets a day of volunteering, Great fun but woke up sore.

Lady and I set out on our adventure.  She had gotten baskets before but this was my first one, I also ordered 2 lugs of apples.  We arrived early and the truck was already there.  We got out and started helping carry cases of food.  There were two men and one lady there with us.  We each took a case and carried it in, we put the boxes where we would the coordinator had not yet arrived.  The time quickly passed and before the pallets were all unloaded more people came along and helped with the unloading.  Just as the last pallet was empty the coordinator arrived and said "no, one called me".  I guess, as a rule, she gets a heads up when the truck leaves the last, or an earlier drop site, no call this time.  She got to organizing where the boxed actually had to be and put up tags where they needed to be relocated them to.  Lady and I spoke to her to let her know that we were there to learn so that we could bring Bountiful Baskets to our little town.  She was happy to have us and right away started letting us know what we would needed to learn, asked if we had done some of the preliminary things we would have to do to get a site.  And let us know that even if we did all of it we would have to be okayed to even get a site.  We were eager to learn and hoping to get all the steps done so we could have a site in our community. 

The coordinator started us down the basket line.  Everyone took up a basket and went to each of the fruit or veggie stations and put the given amount of fruit or vegetable in the baskets.  Some were one or two, others were four, five or seven.  Basket filled it was put into a grid and you got a new basket and started all over.  We filled 87 baskets of food.  There were extras, like strawberries, apples, breads that were ordered to be picked up with the baskets.  There were also addition prefilled boxes of lunch box fruit or organic baskets for other orders.  Once the food was distributed, we reboxed the baskets into boxes for easy pick up, we didn't have enough boxes and some of the people that came to pick up had their own with them so we filled their baskets or boxes.  The baskets have to be picked up by a certain time or by the rules they will be donated to the local fire department, no other place is allowed.  We will have to talk to the local fire station to work that out, maybe he can donate it to the food bank or he may have a need in mind, we will see.  We will also have to get a place to do the drop off and the sorting but that is all something we will get worked out as we get farther down the road to what we have to do.

The people we worked with were great, all had different things to give to the process.  It was a great community activity and it was nice to see a well oiled machine in work.  We were told we could go to the other drop offs to see how others did it but Lady and I both thought that they did such a good job and had such a smooth operation that it may be better to see one working example, use it and work out our own kinks rather than trying to combine many different not necessarily workable ideas together.  We both truly enjoyed our time and volunteering, oh and we got the greatest fruits and veggies for our families.  Lady was sure we would be sore from the lifting, I didn't think that the sore would be from the lifting for me.  I was right and I am sure she was too.  I have no sore from the lifting but the carrying has made my hips sore this morning, back and shoulders great.  I am built like a dump truck so unlike tall people like Poppy and Lady, I get sore differently. 

We ended up with a true passion to bring Bountiful Baskets to our community and a fire to get it done.  I know that both of us have had people tell us that they are interested in participating in the site if we get one here, can't wait to see if we can get one and get it all up and running.  What a blessing that that would be for our little community and think of all the good food and veggies and maybe in the long run it would add to the farmer's market in the summer time.  Bountiful basketers would already be down town so they might just as well stop there too.  I think this will be so good for our little community.  God blesses those who asked for blessings, this will truly be a blessing.... tomorrow.

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Lady and I go, Girls giggle all night, and Charolette goes to meet her beau.

This morning Lady and I are off to volunteer, we will see if our planned endeavor can go forward.  We will get a first hand look at the work it will take and a chance to understand the logistics of setting it up.  I think that it will be something we can get a handle on right away and have had so much interest it will be something to look forward to.  I will tell you all about it once the day is done as we will know the real scoop.  So off we go to Old Pulp Town.  I hope the smoke from all the fires doesn't do us in.  The fires here in western Montana have sure taken a toll on some communities.  Zootown and Old Pulp Town are pretty inundated. 

The girls had one of their friend over for the night.  It is nice that they both have special friends now, they haven't ever had them at the same time so they have had to learn to share and be a good friend to each others special friend.  I think that is a good personality character to cultivate.  We had gone out right after school to Belle's so the girls could have tea with Belle's Baby.  They had a nice little tea setup and the three little girls enjoyed their time together.  I had to take Bubbles with us, Cubbie was asleep on the floor when we left so she stayed with Poppie and then got to ride her "horse" when her dad got home.  She rode everywhere and was in her joy.  Belle and I had a nice visit.  We were there a couple of hours, it was longer than we planned and cut into her dinner making time, but we seldom get to visit with one an other so we were greedy.  Her son and his bride came in as we were going they are going to have a baby in the early months of the year.  Bubbles had a cookie and was happy to be out with Nannie.  We got to chat and catch up so had a great time.  We came home and the girls friend was here with her bike.  She had dinner with us and stayed the night.  They giggled well into the night and I finally had to tell they that they had been up late enough. 

We moved Charlotte, the young sow, over to Son's boar after I got home from Belle's. Son had called earlier in the day with someone wanting to buy a pig, I told them that he was one day to late as we were definitely keeping Charlotte.  Bug tried to pull her with a rope and I told him he had to redo it.  A pig needs to have the rope around the chest and then the neck.  He said he could only get it there, Mokie crawled in and Charlotte let her put the rope right around her, because Mokie sweet talked her. They managed to get her to lead, well as well as a scared pig will lead.  She was still scared from us taking the four out the day before.  They did manage to lead her over to Mokie's and put her in with the boar, Brut, she is in heat so will probably be coming home today or tomorrow.  Miss Chops will go next as she is coming in and should be ready to go as soon as Charlotte comes home.  Miss Chops doesn't need a rope, and as she is about 8 hundred pounds she pretty much gets to do what she wants, she follows the slop bucket over and comes home all on her own after her "date".  I hope the Charlotte gets easier to take to her dates. 

Well the most lovely man just brought me coffee so I better take advantage of the treat and spend a little quiet coffee time with him before our day hits full speed.... tomorrow.

Friday, September 21, 2012

Pigs go to market and Cubbie is not happy, she rides a "horse".

We started out the morning with a pig rodeo.  Poppie took all the kids, he has four on the trip to school and 5 on the return trip everyday, and came home.  He hitched up the trailer and took it around back to the pig pen; because he had to go threw the goat pen he had let all the big goats out in the yard and gave them some hay to hold them over earlier.  He backed up the trailer to the gate and came in for a cup of coffee before the rodeo began.  Mokie brought the girls over to stay with Nannie while they loaded.  Cubbie was sobbing when they came in the house.  I asked her "what was wrong?"  Her mom said she was sad about the piggy's going to market.  They aren't always as open about which pigs are food and which are friends that stay as we are.  I told Mokie that is why the girls get threw it better.  Nannie talked with her and told her that the piggies were going to be pork chops so that people would have nice food to eat and that Charolette was going to get to stay and be a mommie pig.  She was happy that there would be more baby pigs and that someone would get to have a nice pork chop, she likes pork chops.  Three went to the meat man, he has a whole pig ordered and the littlest one will fill that order that other two will be processed through his shop.  The last pig is going to be processed for Thor the last of our market pigs this year.  Since both of our pigs are being bred this week we are going to buy a couple piglets from Mokie and Son to raise up for future market pigs.  It is nice that the local meat processor gets them from us when he has a need, if we have some.

Poppie, Mokie and Bug went out to load the pigs.  They got the first three in the trailer right away, the last smallest female was a pain, of course she was the most important one that needed loaded.  They had locked Miss Chops (formerly Swiss Miss Chops) and Charlotte away from the others but the little one got in and they had to all be let out to get her out of the pen.  Bubbles and I went out to see how they were progressing and were enlisted to hold the gate where they were and make sure the little sow didn't try to get in with them again.  It was a short time before Mokie and Son caught her a dragged her to the trailer, Poppie opened the gate while keeping the other three captured and soon the deed was done.  They were all eating grain in the back of the trailer as Poppie and Bug took them to the market.  Poppie said they all jumped right out of the trailer at the meat shop and they returned the trailer to it's home.

Cubbie spent a great part of the day missing and when her mom went to investigate her where abouts, there she would in the goat pen, it is a good thing the goat pen is in full view of Mokies kitchen windows.  She has picked out Star to be her "horse'.  Star is Mokie's biggest doe.  She is remarkable gentle and accommodating.  Cubbie has learned to ride her around the pen with no halter of anything.  She uses her knees to stay on and around the pen they go.  Sometimes when it is feeding time she get bumped by the other goats in there excitement to eat but our Cubbie takes it in stride.  Sometime Star dips her shoulder and slides Cubbie on to the ground.  Cubbie just gets right back on, is that a buck in goat language?  hmmm, I think it is, Cubbie gets bucked off and gets right back on.  She picks her friend buckets of grass and the whole herd follows her around to get their share.  She is a goatwoman, or "horsewoman" to her core.  She is not afraid of my biggest buck and he knows it so he acts like a kitten to her.  He does intimidate her mom though and he knows that too, too funny.  Cubbie is alot like her mom.  She is in her realm in the goat pen and with her animals.  Mokie used to play on an old station wagon that Poppie had for them to play in when she was about Cubbies age.  My mom would come over and be so worried when Mokie would be on the roof crawling into a window below her. I would say to my mom "she is fine, just don't watch because she is fine".  My mom never did understand that she was in her element.  Our Cubbie is in her element every day of her life on the farm, isn't that nice to live in your element, the queen of your world?...... tomorrow.

Thursday, September 20, 2012

How or why are we so different?

I find it interesting that in somethings in our world of late there seems to be a distinct polarization of mankind.  Just look at the up rising in the middle east.  Several years ago when it began, and don't kid yourself it wasn't Tunisia like my young friend so rudely implied to me.  It was the green up rising of Iran but since the liberal young hadn't gotten on board with that they didn't recognize it back then, some do now but since it wasn't their idea of the social media revolution and it wondrous evolution at the time they didn't see it.  I, at the time, made the explanation when one of the young people, said have you ever seen anything like it before?  Ummm several states revolting together to throw off the oppression of a singular authority over them,  I suggested it was a modern version of possibly the 13 states that we know?  NO, I was wrong, the young one said it is more it is wonderful it is new to our age, really?  Well now we know I was wrong it was so similar and the chance for true democracy was at their doorsteps, they sort of reached out and grabbed it but the goal was not reached by any of the young people who so tried to throw off their tyranny in the end, not Neda, not the young in Tahrir square, or the all the rest of the people who died and are dieing for a better life for themselves and their families.  Was it a difference of how they perceived their world that lead to the different outcome? (Well the outcome is not known as yet but it doesn't look like they will become truly democratic)  Was it an ideological difference?  Was it that true democracy was not part of their fiber and they are not capable of it, I have heard that said, but is it true?  Why would the out come of two uprisings, two hundred years apart be so different.  I don't think it was the social media, because during the American uprising we were using our cutting edge media as well, and two hundred years from now social media will be as antiquated as the printing press pamphlets and two lanterns in a Church steeple are now.  The will of the people to make their lives better at the cutting edge of their communications won't be.  Will the uprising of the future generations have better outcomes, or will they be as different as these two as they are from one another?

Why are we so different from on another, and I don't mean from country to country as the last examples clear were.  Eastern and Western philosophies are so different they may not be a fair comparison.  Religious beliefs can be so different in the east and the west.  I am asking about the difference in those of us who fought together to become America?  Yes, we have added lots of new faces to our country and do every day, but when it gets down to brass taxes they are the same as we who have been here some 500 years.  They left their countries, homes and families to seek out something better.  They came and come for religious freedom, to escape tyranny, they come to make better lives for themselves and their kids, so they, and we, are still all Americans.  So, why as Americans are we so different still?  We are here because we wanted the same for our lives, so how can that dream, the same dream be so different?  How can there be an Obama and a Romney.  They both want to lead us, they both love their families, they both are on extreme opposites of the same argument. 

They are the leaders of two totally different ideologies that seems to be straining the fibers of our country.  How do two kids grow up in this county who have good families, good educations and lead good lives see the country from such different points of view.  How is it that abortionists and pro-lifers are subject to the same country influences end up hating one another and believing they are in the right of it?  How is it that a redistributor and a small governmenter co-exist?  How is it that socialists and capitalists grow in the same garden?  We are an amazing country where all are welcome, we have the right to voice our opinions and each is allowed to exist.  We are as different as the poles of this earth but in the end we manage to find some common ground, or have been able to for 225+ years, so I have faith that we will continue to do so.  We are an amazing place to live and I hope that we will be for the foreseeable future.  I am glad that we didn't fall back under the authority of singular rule, or the rule of the oppressors, before we made our way to the great United Country that we are.  I love that God gave us our wonderful country, and will honor him for the gift all of my life, and that he let me live here, with all our faults and dysfunctionality.... tomorrow.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Drama is in need, Lady Hero and Seester come by for a visit.

Yesterday was a day filled with people, well every day here is filled with people but there were people here that are not here every day or regularly so it was a day of different peoples.  Cubbie and I started the day with PreSchool.  Cubbie was here bright and early, we made up her oatmeal, she got to stir it and watch the dinosaurs appear, didn't make her eat it as good as the kind we cook on the stove but it did make her want to stir it.  She and I had stirred up some bread the day before and she had a loaf all picked out to give her teacher.  She was sitting there in her little school desk and said all forlornly, "Nannie, I will go home she is not coming"  I told her to have a little patience, she would come.  Shortly there after PreSchool drove in the drive and Cubbies little face lit up with delight. They had a day of fun.  Preschool was in the living room sitting on the floor rolling the ball back and forth with the small child, Cubbie couldn't restrain herself, her laughter was contagious.  She truly loves her special time with Preshool.  She gets to be the center of attention with an adult that is not part of her family, she is learning that the outside world can be a safe and loving place. She is learning security in community, she is learning to love someone not related to her, a big step in a 3 year olds life.  Friday she gets to take her mom to school with the whole group, Nannie does not do that, mom has gotten permission from her job to share this time with her daughter one on one. 

Lady Hero and her sister, Seester, I saw Lady Hero call her that on facebook and somehow it just stuck in my head so she is Seester.  I actually worked with both of them years ago at the Sheriff's office.  Lady hero was my supervisor and I replaced Seester on the grave yard when I started there.  She moved away shortly after I started.  She is just moving back to our area.  They came to see all of our animals, the kids, the veggies (Poppies big pumpkin) and bring me a plant.  It was really cool it was a split leaf philodendron, I have one but it is a different species apparently.  It looks like a baby cousin in comparison.  The grands and Mokie came over when they were here, it seems if you stop by you will be inundated with the full measure of us so it is something that visitors just have to get used to and expect, I suppose.  Lady Hero wanted to visit all the animals she has read about here in my blog and share them with her sister, what a special thing that is to us.  She asked about all of her favorites and got to meet them in person, Poppie couldn't imagine how she knew all of their names.  Mishka had been naughty earlier in the day and was hiding under the studio but could resist her curiosity about the strangers in her yard, her job don't you know.  She came out and joined us.  We showed them all of our animals and then took them over to Mokies to show them the little piglets over there.  While we were showing them Drama stopped by at our house, I didn't get to see her but Mokie had walked over to talk to her.  Soon we went over to the house to go in for a short while, on the porch was a couple of squash that my dad had sent over.  Lady Hero was ecstatic she had been looking for a banana squash, dad hadn't known what it was so sent it to me.  I had been gifted with two big ones and so we shared the banana one with them.  I have a great big pumpkin and now a great big Hubbard to process the banana was gladly given to a good home.  They soon departed having had a fun time exploring our world, I think.

Mokie advised me that Drama had been in distress when she talked to her so I called her.  She had had a very trying visit with mom, that happens to the best of us.  She like the rest of us can usually handle it but it was one of those days when she needed love and compassion from her mom, and none was given.  I spoke with her for awhile, tried to be of comfort.  I tried to help her understand that she was not the problem that mom just wasn't sometimes capable of given any of us the things emotionally we need from her.  I spoke to her of God's compassion and love, the love of those who do have time to care about her, and that I would try to be there for anything she might need.  I don't know that I was all that much help but trying is all we can do in situations sometimes.  God is and can be the greatest comforter, I encouraged her to seek him and that through him she could have true harmony that no one else can give us.  I hope she seeks him and finds his comfort.... tomorrow.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

The temple of God is holy, foolishness is the power of God.

1 Corinthians 3:16-17

King James Version (KJV)
16 Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you?
17 If any man defile the temple of God, him shall God destroy; for the temple of God is holy, which temple ye are.

Recently it has been brought to my attention that a person of less than stellar person and sensibilities has started up a compane to discredit my littlest daughters  I know! What more depraved person could exist than someone who deems it necessary to gossip and defame a 9 and 10 year old.  The quotes I have heard, from concerned parties, has been "keep you kids away from them they are little weirdos"  "They are bad evil kids and will do harm to your kids"  "They stalk me and I am harassed by them, they are weirdo's".  Really does anyone out there that knows my Ladies believe this or are you, like me, as appalled at the audacity of an adult who is so vile that they would spread this kind of garbage and have nothing better to do with there life than to dwell upon the two little girls that got away.  Maybe that is the key they got away. 

I have prayed and the Lord sent me the above verse as some solace.  I would say gossiping about small children, children that are straight a students, harder workers than most children their ages, good God fearing children, children that are surely temples of God, is a defilement.  God will punish and destroy those who defile his temple.  So as with my worries, I will leave it to God to deal with.

I have found my self  more contemplative of the Lord's wisdom and wondrousness lately.  He has brought me so many blessing this year.  He has called my dearest to him.  He fills my daughter with the hungry to seek him as they grow.  He has recently called to my son, in a new way, and I hope my son keeps listening and walking toward him. I know to those of you who believe in the power of God this is marvelous and wondrous but to those who believe not this is foolishness.  Somehow God knew that non believers would find all of the believing in God stuff so.  Our age is the worst at believing that Christians are fools.  Just got to google you can find innumerable examples of some one calling Christians fools and worse.  Sadly the wisest of our societies have made it such.  Those who believe believe by faith and with all their hearts, those who don't scoff and make fun of the idiots who would believe such drivel.  I am not a lazy person, I believe in and love the Lord with all my heart, soul and mind, but if I were a lazy person I would believe just because the alternative is such a horror to contemplate for me.  Death and nothingness.  I am glad I am foolish and believe in the word of the Cross and the Power of God.  I sorrow for the wise men of this and all ages who do not and have not.

1 Corinthians 1:18 For the word of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God.

1 Corinthians 1:21 For since in the wisdom of God the world through its wisdom did not come to know God, God was well-pleased through the foolishness of the message preached to save those who believe.

1 Corinthians 2:14 But a natural man does not accept the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; and he cannot understand them, because they are spiritually appraised.

1 Corinthians 4:10 We are fools for Christ's sake, but you are prudent in Christ; we are weak, but you are strong; you are distinguished, but we are without honor.

2 Corinthians 13:4 For indeed He was crucified because of weakness, yet He lives because of the power of God. For we also are weak in Him, yet we will live with Him because of the power of God directed toward you.

I find the more I read the Bible, on a regular bases, the more I want to and the more God reveals to me. Daily reading, the first thing in the moring, puts the Lord first in my life and can yours.  I know that that is the way it is meant to be.  I foolishly, like a sheep, follow my Shepard, he will sustain me, cloth me, feed me, love me and make a home forever for me..... tomorrow.

Monday, September 17, 2012

Bug comes along, Old Green gets new shoes, a day of rest, naughty Poppie.

I got a great surprise yesterday.  Poppie picked up Bug when he went down to pick up slop for the pigs at Jackie's.  Bug came in the house and as he stood there he asked me if I noticed anything?  I said "no".  I couldn't see anything out of the ordinary.  He had been coming by for the last few days helping Poppie fix Old Green.  He held out is Bible.  See I have my Bible, he had earned his Bible as a child for going to church for 6 months in a row, the kids had earned one.  Each received a very nice Bible with their names on the front.  Mokie had said recently the Grandma had Bug's Bible but there he stood with it in hand, and proud that he had it, no Grandma didn't have it he had always had it.  He was dressed in nice clothes and was there to join us and go to Church.  I told him I was proud of him and he came along with us.  He was welcomed with open arms, as all who come are, at the Church.  Church was a little special, it was breakfastfest so we were there a little early.  We were celebrating the birthdays of Sept, but we celebrated a special one our charter member turned 80, she did it with all the grace she daily shares with the rest of us.  She is a wondrous lady.  80 is just a number for her, she passes this milestone with out even stopping.  She is a go getter and a hard worker, works harder than most 20 year olds I know, well maybe more that most 40 years olds, 20 years olds haven't gotten it together to work as hard as she does.  She is a special person, loves her family, her church family and most of all loves the Lord, she is one of the humblest people I know and 100 won't have anything on her.  She makes me tired just watching her.  Happy Birthday to a special lovely lady, Mrs. M.  I hope Bug joins us again at Church the Lord has called and he has answered the call, now I hope he continues to hear the call and respond.

Poppie and Bug made a trade to get new to us tires for Old Green.  Poppie had an old homemade trailer with a 1965 ford box on it. One of his friends was looking for one for a truck he and his dad are restoring.  They made a trade the box for tires and rims.  Old green got new clogs to sport around.  Made her a pretty girl.  She will go out in style.  The "boys' thought the truck looked good too, more worried about the power the tires will give when pulling, but Bug did like the looks as well. Poppie was just glad the truck had good tires and would be able to haul wood.  His beloved truck will be down until we can get new injectors.  Sad that the damage went so far in to destroying her, and sad the maliciousness it would take to do that to someone else's property. I digress.  Today we celebrate Old Greens debut. 

Poppie has been working daily for four days to help get Old Green up and running, it has taken a toll, he had to take more pain meds yesterday to get up, he hates  to take them and really does limit his use and any additional ones.  I know that he is been very bad when he has to.  He told me he is going to get me a leash and when I notice him doing bad things I am to pull it and get him back on track.  I dropped the ball on this one and let him way over do it.  I shall endeavor to be a better care taker.  It is hard to stop him though when he is on a mission, Bug doesn't see that he is overdoing and Poppie is harder to stop when he is doing something with Bug.  We were going to go mushrooming in Idaho but Poppie was in to much pain so we cancelled and will try to do that in the future when Poppie has not been so naugthy.  See babysitting a man is much more working than babysitting a newly walking nine month old.... tomorrow.

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Beets, Poppies truck roars, and the Ladies had a great Farmer's Market but they called it the last of the year.

The Ladies had a great Farmer's Market, sold everything but three loaves of 100% whole wheat, but they gifted it to Grandpa and Mike from Jackie's.  They love the market but they said they were cold and that they thought the work until dark was probably more than they can do, plus mom has to work to much to help them out.  I told you they were great girls.  They are going to do the October 20th Helpline craft show.  They were told they could make bread, pies and foccacias for it so they are going to go.  I will have my soap there but Booboo is becoming the Soap seller so we will have to make it so she can learn the ins and outs of soap.  She is stepping up to sales lady she just had to have something that she has passion for now to instill  her passion.  She makes pies but doesn't like to sell them.  Yogie loves selling baked goods has a passion for making and selling it. 

Grandpa gifted us beets and Poppie picked ours, we didn't have a lot but with them both I got 6 quarts so that was a blessing.  I got caught red handed making them, I used to so love to hear my Grandma Gladys say that when she processed her beats, she always said it, you could count on it, every time.  Memories.  I got to lounge around in the morning yesterday, thanks to the Ladies doing the market without me.  Poppie and Bug worked on finishing up Poppies 'Old Green' truck.  She roared to life and was ready to go, they have a little tinkering left to do but for the most part we will have a running truck and be able to go out to Fosters later in the week and cut wood.  No farmers market to bake for so we will use the days to firewood, we need to get on it now that the days are cooling off.  I still have kids on Friday so we will have to do it one Thursdays and Saturdays when I am not volunteering with Lady to get our project up and running.  I will tell you all about it after we have actually had our first volunteer day and are officially working on it.  Which is this Saturday, yay. 

The Ladies friend came by last night and played and then the kids and the grands all went down to the new boy in the neighborhoods birthday.  What a wonderful thing that all of the kids in the neighborhood can get together and have a little celebration.  The days of childhood play are some of the most community building things a kid can do.  It teaches them the importance of interacting with and caring about your fellow man and your neighbors, as lesson not all children get to embrace and it is so important to learn.  My fellow man is my neighbor and God said that Loving God was the most important commandment and loving you neighbor the second.  Children learn them both in the arms of their family and neighborhood. May the Lord bless you and love you... tomorrow.

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Rambling thoughts, mincemeat and the farmer market.

The Ladies are getting so good at baking, Yogie made sponge before school to help out as much as she could.  I finished her breads.  Booboo came home from school and made pie crust and pies until dark.  I like that we can do it more as equals, they know the processes, the recipes and techniques so it is much more a co-working process.  They are great kids.  I got the sweetest note from Yogie thanking me for the work I do and that she felt I needed a rest, so I am resting this morning as they do the Farmers Market. What a blessing they are to our lives.

I made mincemeat yesterday.  I have contemplated making green tomato mincemeat all week but in the end didn't want to use up all of my green tomatoes.  We noticed that the little tree in the woods, next to our house, this year has a great crop of apples and they tasted good after the freeze, so Poppie picked them.  They were about half of what I needed.  He had a whole bunch of yellow squash so I thought if you can use green tomatoes to make mincemeat and you can use zucchini to make pineapple or apple pie why couldn't I use yellow squash to make mincemeat.  I chopped it all up in to little squares, it looked just like yellow delicious apples.  I pitted my cherries from the pie cherry trees.  I chopped goat meat and since I couldn't get any suet down town I use some of my coconut oil in place of the suet, chopped lemons, oranges and added raisins regular and yellow.  Okay so a hodge podge recipe, totally adaptation of some of the ingredients.  Isn't hat how recipes evolve or become?  I cooked it for several hours being care full not to scorch it.  I didn't have the money for walnuts locally so thought for the price I could substitute roasted soybeans for a little crunch.  I think the end result was a success as the grands and the Ladies ate samples out of a bowl.  I processed 14 quarts, one broke in the pressure canner, my first ever in the pressure canner, and one didn't seal.  12 for the cupboard and I am sure I will gift a few of them to mincemeat people.  Are you one?  It's sort of like bread pudding or cilantro you either like it or hate it.

I have been up against a glass house situation, well sort of, of late.  You know about glass houses, if you live in one you shouldn't throw stones right?  Well on the same light why would you use a video camera to harass your neighbors for months on end, standing at the end of their drive videoing them, driving by with your camera phone at arms length taping them, put in security cameras and spend hours following your neighbors every move with the camera from your computer, walk by with you camera held out at arms length taping them and their guests, walk along and narrate as you tape your neighbors (at least four different families of neighbors) then when your neighbor finally scrapes together enough money to buy a video camera and tape you one time you run down to the local law enforcement office crying and whining that your neighbors are video taping you, really?  What?  Oh, my goodness they didn't? how could they have the audacity to video tape you? Why would they violate you that way?  Isn't there something the law enforcement can do to protect you from such an invasion of privacy?  Kind of reminds me of the goose and the gander, doesn't it you? 

Poppie and Bug are fixing Poppies gifted truck today, they decided yesterday to put one of Poppie other motors in it and should be finished this morning.  We are hoping to get to go mushrooming this afternoon or tomorrow after Church.  We have been wanting to go since spring but haven't found the time.  We are going to a place we have never been, Bug knows the place really well and it will be a great adventure to a new wondrous place in the woods. We haven't gotten to go to the woods nearly enough this year, a family outing in the woods with the Lord what could be better?...... tomorrow.

Friday, September 14, 2012

The house in the neighborhood, you know the ones where all the kids go, that's mine.

I never got to go to the house where all the kids went when I was a kid, because when we lived anywhere long enough to make friends and be stable, that was my house.  Plains was as close as I came to a home town as an older child, the Bitterroot was the home of my small childhood.  The between was a blur of lots of places with no time to make any real friends.  Plains gave us an opportunity to make friends and the 8 of us had lots, some more than others.  Two of my sisters were born in Plains, both at home.  I had a friend that the relationship endured our moving to and from Plains several times, we moved there four times and away four.  We did have the ability to step back into our friendships though so that did make for us have some good friends.  I had several but none that lasted into adulthood.  They just didn't have the roots to endure.  My sibling are much the same way but some of them do have relationships that are still connected there.  My parents have returned to the valley, they lived in our valley here almost 30 years and never really called it home, they are home now and I am glad they are but I don't think that they interact with all that many people.  They have became more isolated as they aged, maybe in the long term they were the ones that couldn't grow moss?  They have now, atleast, found a crevasse and are happy.  I digress.

I lived in the home where all the kids came.  My mom is really good with babies and young kids.  She has a difficulty with elementary kids but good again in my ways with junior high and high school kids.  There were lots of teens and pre-teens in and out of our lives at Plains.  So I always knew about the house everybody came to play at but I never really got to go to one.  My older kids were really little when all the neighborhood kids came to play at our house, they were much older than my kids though.  My kids aged and had places to go so my house was open but my kids weren't always here.  Mokie was at Sisters with Niece, Bug had his friends with the logger dads, Goofy was always in search of that special friend and never sure enough of herself to make the decision to have one in many ways.  She seemed to always make the wrong choices, and her sadness was something I could never really help.  I tried but I am not sure I had the skills to help her as I wasn't all the sure how to be a long time friend myself.  She eventually went on to boys and the choices didn't get any better but I think now she has come into her own and is happily married with two lovely little babies.

I have really worked hard to give my kids one school, and only a few moves in one town.  I was a work in progress with the older kids but I think I have figured it out for my little girls.  Booboo makes friend easily and has many.  Yogie struggles just a little but has a whole group of friends.  They both have kind of found that special friend in the last year so that is great.  This year my house has finally become the place the kids in the neighborhood go, I have always been the place that the grands come but now they and the girls bring their friends here.  My house is the chaotic place with the bikes thrown willy nilly, kids are sliding down the slide, petting goats, chasing chickens, catching rabbits, mauling kitties, and playing tag with the dog.  The little ones ooo and aw at the peacocks, spray water all over each other with a hose and are not allowed to track mud in.  Bubbles watches in delight as the others run past, she is trying her best to follow and has gotten those legs under her and is walking across the floor falls gets up and falls again over and over. Our home is the place where all the kids go, isn't that wonderful for a rolling stone?..... tomorrow.

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Were you ever a rolling stone without roots? I have been and chose not to be.

I have said before that as a child my family moved 42 times, before I was married I moved 4 more times and as a married person have moved 5 more times.  I would call that being a rolling stone.  I was watching the coverage of the DNC convention, see I did watch both, did you?  Did you watch more than one view point, I did that too, I hope you did as well.  I digress.  Anyway one of the speakers at the DNC convention spoke of how as a child he had been a rolling stone and one day his father took a stand and planted there family in one place and because of that he was able to rise to the elected position he currently holds.  It got me to thinking about how being a rolling stone or not being a rolling stone changes your life on so many levels. 

You don't think so?  Well it does and on more levels than most people think.  A child of the rolling stone persuasion I went to 13 different schools.  It never allowed for me to be a permanent friend to anyone.  I never got to have the security of knowing the teachers I would have or had as a securing force in my life.  I know some say that moving made me a more traveled child and a child of more experiences, well yes it did.  I being a good student weathered it but my sibling that were average or struggling students paid a dear price for the unbalance of education.  Oh, don't even kid yourself that schools from one town to the next are even close to being the same education as one stable school so what would make you think going to school in 6 states would be any better, no it was much harder.  People often wonder why I know a little about alot of subject or things, well my childhood helped, reading helped but shear fear of having to start all over, over and over again, probably played a part as well. 

People often wonder why I am not more out going or why I seem to be able to hibernate or walk away from situations.  Well it was easy I never got to stay and learn to be a friend for long term, 3 months here, 4 months there, 6 months, a year and a half or 4 years, does that give climate for friendship building, community building or balance?  It does give me life experience and I would not give most of it up for anything but to have been in one school, have friends I  had had since kindergarten, well I do have one of those and I call her Sister, but that is not really how it was supposed to work for most.  I may just be her friend from kindergarten as well, I know we are sisters from the start and friends from the heart but was that how it should have been?  I think probably in the long run it would have worked out that way anyway but I would have had stabilising relationships that I don't have or had to work extra hard to build as an adult.

I do know that it took me years as an adult to learn what children of a long time community have from the start.  I did have the advantage of almost always living in a small town, well there was Winslow in 1970, I digress; but for the most part we lived in similar little towns.  I did know about small town life but I had learned it from the outside and did not know it from the inside.  I have now lived in this little town for almost 33 years and believe me I know home town life from the inside thoroughly, good or bad?  I am not sure but I do know it well from both sides. 

I have learned that you never go into a town and assume anything about anyone or the tying relationships that might connect people.  You never say anything about anyone as they are probably related to any number of people and you are clueless to this.  You never assume that just because someone appears to not be connected to anyone else don't believe it.  I learned to watch, listen and study people.  I love genealogy probably because it was good to know who was who, who they were related to and who they were allies with.  I learned that siblings my not talk to one another for 30 years but you had still better not bad mouth their sister, after all they are sisters, whether they have spoken to one another for 30 years makes not a whit of difference, family is family.  You can't count on gossiping about or bad mouthing Joe because, John down the road it his third cousin and family is family.  You shouldn't talk about Sue as she went to school with Sally in kindergarten and they haven't seen each other for 13 years but you still can't speak of her in a bad light because you don't know what you are talking about and friends for life is the code of the small town. 

I do still like to watch people.  I have lived in this little town for a long time, when I moved here I was not related to anyone but Poppie.  My family moved here and my siblings married in and out of the community.  My siblings some of them went all their school years here, my kids went all their school years here and married into the community, so what makes you think I am not part of this community to the core of who I am? I am a part of the fabric of this town, no not quite as much as the person that has roots 3 or 4 generations deep but they are my kin, my friends and my companions.  Small town life is funny if you scratch me I bleed home town and some one is going to take objection to your hurting me and it may just be that new friend that you haven't got a clue is my daughter in laws sister, or my brother in laws cousin, or my sisters, I do have 7 don't you know.  Rolling stones are a funny thing most don't grow moss but some eventually come to rest and get a mossy muddy coating that grows deep roots and becomes a loved part of a small town..... tomorrow.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Cabbage collards, we squeaked past one of two predicted frosts, and Rajee will become Root Beer.

I finished up my Virginia chunks they tasted great when I put them in the jars, got 13.  I gifted two, one to Lady and one to Drama.  We tried the Dixie Cabbage Relish on the brats and it was good.  I gifted two of those as well.  Preacher was happy to take our one jar of relish and gifted us with a box of 20 pints, yay for wide mouths and 3 quart jars.  I bought jars the other day knowing that I wouldn't have enough and hoping I would get by.  The Lord was so good to me, Herbalist and Pianist both gave me jars so I am truly blessed and should have enough to finish the season, and some to play with, more bean creations, yay.  Poppie covered up his beloved great pumpkin last night.  We were to have two frosts, last night and one tonight,  we missed the bullet last night and if we can eek by tonight, we may get more cucumbers and more.  What a blessing that is, I know some of you have had enough bounty this year but we could use a little more, my jars aren't all full.  There must be a reason I have been blessed with more and so I should fill them. I picked all of my cabbage leaves and I am going to cook them up like collards and can them. The girls and I love greens and didn't get Poppie to grow any this year so as we tried eating the cabbage leaves a couple years ago, and loved them, we are going to use what we have and we have lot of the big green cabbage leaves.  I picked about 10 to  15 lbs so will see what I get. 

Poppie brought Rajee home with him from the Professors.  Herbalist has decided to stay with just dairy goats so gifted Rajee back to me.  He was the twin of Rommie that the cougar killed last year.  I was so excited to have him back as we lost his mother as well, I really had wanted her breeding in my heard and bought her granddaughter back from the crazy goat lady I sold Shamrock to.  Now I will have him to breed to my herd this year.  His dad is visiting with Mokie's herd so there shouldn't be any problem with the two of them.  When they are done breeding they will be all tired out and ready to be in a buck pen together.  We are going to put Cinnamon in with them as well.  We have decided that since Root Beer is the withered brother of Rajee, and Eldest claims him, that we will changed his name to Root Beer.  The real Root Beer will be harvested next month when we harvest the rest of the goats and two pigs.  Eldest always asks about Root Beer and doesn't know we have gotten Rajee.  No one here calls him Rajee but me, as he has been away for almost two years, so the name change will give Eldest a new friend that will stay and he will be just as proud to have him as the original Root Beer.  They are nearly identical in appearance but for Rajee being a bit bigger.  Eldest will get to keep a him as his that way. 

I am hoping to get some house cleaning done today.  Laundry, vacuuming and maybe find one of my tables.  I should have some canning to do as well.  Lady and her grandgirl and grandboy might stop by if they have time. Cubbie would like that but we will see what the day brings.  I hope you have a blessed day and remember no worries... tomorrow.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Virginia chunks done and ready to can this morning, It is to frost tonight. Eleven years ago......

I do the last step and add the last of the sugar to my Virginia chunk pickles this morning.  I will get them canned up this afternoon.  Cubbie has her pre-school so Preschool will be here this morning.  It will be nice to see her and spend time with her.  Cubbie has a new "red" dress and black tights.  I was proud of Mokie for buying her the red.  Red is my favorite color and it looked so lovely on Mokie as a baby, she wore a lot of it, even as a little girl, so she hates it, but it was soooo pretty on her.  It will be so nice to see Cubbie in her new red dress.

It is to frost tonight and tomorrow night.  Poppie is going to cover his great pumpkin and some of the cukes to see if he can save them as it is to get warm again on Thursday.  He is going to button up the greenhouse so that the peppers and tomatoes fair well.  The rest he will just let it be and see what happens.  What will be will be and no sense in worrying.  We are practicing nonworrying don't you know.  It was funny that this week we decided to live with no worries, as the Lord told us to, and at the restaurant yesterday I got a message in a fortune cookie to help me remember, it said, "no need to worry! you will always have everything that you need."  God does talk to us and reassures us if only we listen to him and for him.

Today we mourn the loss of those 2976 souls who one day went to work and through no fault of their own they were murdered and became everlasting heroes in our country.  I know not who they were for the most part and never meant one of them.  Their friends and loved ones do and sorrow for their loss daily.  I do know that from afar I mourned them and will on this day all of my life.  How the loss of someone I didn't know can effect me more than some of my own lost loved ones I don't know but it does.  It is because they gave their lives for us as innocents.  Everyday I think to honor the ones the volunteer to give theirs for us and do honor the soldiers of every branch but these souls gave their lives for us through no knowledge of their own.  Some of them did in the end do wondrous acts of bravery for others, some of them ran in and tried to help and save, in an unsaveable situation, but for the most part they paid with their lives because of the will of a truly evil and treacherous terrorists.  They were innocents, or collateral damage as some call it, but to me they could have been my brothers, my sisters, my mom or my dad.  They could have been and were the loved ones of any of ours.  They were Americans, they were us and could have been any of us.  I think that is why we will always remember, we as Americans are a family, dysfunctional rowdy, multi religious, multi-racial and multi-lots of different things but a big family that like any family in the end loves each other.  Today we mourn the passing of our family members and our sorrow should be known and heard because we lost something so precious................tomorrow.

Monday, September 10, 2012

Does the more things change the more they stay the same ring true for you? It does for me....

I had a conversation the other day that was very interesting to me.  Cubbie and Boy come to Church with us sometimes.  Son doesn't like to go to Church much, he was rigidly made to go to Church as a child.  He decided along time ago he was not going to make his kids go to Church.  I don't actually know what his relationship with God is, I do suspect that it is alot closer than he would like anyone to know.  He doesn't work on Sundays if he can help it, it is after all a day of rest.  He and Mokie came to Church with us one Sunday so he isn't totally against going, he did say later "it was church".  Well Cubbie loves to come to Church, Boy likes to came once he gets there but he is not outspoken to go.  Several weeks ago Son told Cubbie she could go the following week but not that week.  The next week came and she came to spend the night so she could go to Church.  Well her dad told her she had to come home and she couldn't go to Church broke her heart and she cried all the way home as her mom carried her across the yard.  A couple of days later I told Mokie, you know not allowing a child to go to church that loves to go is as bad as forcing a child that doesn't want to go to go, Son is making a mistake in forcing her not to go.  Mokie had a talk with Son and he decided to allow her to go when ever she wants to go but that no one can make her go. Well she is as tickled pink as can be, she loves to go and can know. 

It got me to thinking about the things in life that must have been the same always.  Has the want or the not want to go to Church always been a part of life, probably not the way it is now, in old times many more people went and no child would have thought they could stay home so probably never thought to asked, but I am sure there were lots that had to go much like Son did.  So maybe the same.  I do find that new mothers and pregnant mores are a creature that never changes no mater the generation, the era, the education level or economical level.  Did you ever notice how every young newly wed that got pregnant is always so shocked it has finally happened, and finally happened could be the night of their wedding or years later, finally is really in the eye of the beholder.  Each new mother to be experiences  the wonder of conception, the mystery of the process to come.  They almost have a feeling of having done something that no one else has ever done, they are going to give birth after all, they are creating a new life, they are a miracle and they are creating a miracle don't you know.  It is so cute to see them experience this experience.  It only happens in the first pregnancy.  Second pregnancy the mystery is gone, the kid on their lap is screaming and reminding them that maybe it is good that it takes nine months to have a baby, they need time to prepare after all.  Did you ever see a first time mother with her baby? Did you ever feel that overwhelming feeling of becoming a mother?  It is something I can't explain and won't even try but it is comparable to nothing on earth.  I am not sure the fathers feel it or maybe it is that they don't feel it the same way.  It is an experience that happens in and instant, one second they are inside of you and a part of your body and the next there is a little independent person in your arms.  Daddy's experience the new independent person in their arms I would think much the same as mommas do but not the part of being part of your body.  I can't imagine that this would have been any different for people a thousand years ago.  The parent wonders of what am I going to do to make this little persons life better than mine? can I take care of him the way I need to?  the way I want to?  What if I fail?  Will I succeed, how can I not?  What will he become?  Can I do the right things by her?  Really are the questions any different today?  It is funny every parent in time has counted all the toes and fingers.  They all look to see what the baby is, well in this day and age the don't look at the babies parts they look on a screen and hope to see parts that will give them the answer so I suppose still looking at parts to know what God sent them.  God's special gift just for them. 

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Fun day away, spent the evening with Bubbles recipe hunting.

Lady and I were off to the Zoo on a day away.  We made arrangements to volunteer in a couple of weeks on a project that we are interested in starting in our area.  We have had lots of feed back on people wanting to participate so we are excited about our new adventure to come.  We shopped and shopped a little more, had a sandwich and sandwich and soup at a nice new place that I had never been.  Looked for little fun things for her grandson to have for when his dad is stationed away from home, he is in the Air Force.  Sometimes moms need little gifts that keep little guys minds busy.  We finished by picking up our extra virgin coconut oils and her bountiful basket and on towards home.  Poppie picked me up at her house and we got to see their wonderful garden.  Hubbie was as excited as Lady to show us their beautiful garden.  They gifted me, Poppie can eat them since his accident, with a giant cabbage, we ate part of it fried for dinner. The girls had had a great day at the farmer's market, sold out and sold a bunch of my soap.

We got home and Poppie had to help Son move building with his backhoe.  That took the rest of the night.  I got to have Bubbles to spend time with.  She loves her old Nannie but she had spent 10 hours with me the day before so would have liked to spend time with Momma.  She ate cookies, spaghetti, and watermelon while I did the last day of step one on our Virginia chunks.  I put all the canning away, I had picked up 2 more dozen jars in Zootown to do more.  I am actually going to count me jars to see how many I actually have.  I am sure it is approaching 400 to 500 but not sure.  I can atleast count most of them in rows as they are stacked in rows of the same number. Will be fun to see how many there are.  I am still going to make sauerkraut and this year I will can it as I will need my crock for meat. I think I am going to add spices to it when I can it.  Hot pepper flakes, juniper berries, dill and maybe so others.  Lady had a few ideas to add when I suggested it.  Great minds think alike and fools seldom differ don't you know, my dad always said that with such pride and humor.  I digress.  I finished the evening off with Bubbles sleeping in my lap looking for cabbage relish recipes so I can finish up the rest of the giant cabbage the Lady and Hubbie gave us. I think I like the Dixie ones that I have read will try one later this afternoon.  Sleeping babies truly are one of God greatest gifts don't you think?....... tomorrow.

Friday, September 7, 2012

Poppie fixes the deck, grain delivered as blessing, and food for the winter to come.

Poppie promised all spring to fix the deck, he just couldn't find the time to do it.  We were both worried that some one would fall through it, well me more than him, at the fourth party.  Well this week is the week it finally gets fixed.  He took all the boards off, he is putting them on the way they should have been put on in the first place.  He had been in the middle of building it when he had his accident all those years ago, 4.  Bug finished it for him and wanted to fix it right, in the first place, but Poppie wouldn't hear of it, his mind wasn't working exactly right and was not open to any one's opinion.  It was soon apparent that it should have been made the other way, boards perpendicular to the studs for strength even if it wasn't as pretty as he wanted it.  He had used upcycled studding so putting the studs the other way wasn't an option just the decking was.  So Poppie has spent the week fixing the decking the other way and raising the deck.  It had settled as well due to it being build on newly excavated ground from the foundation.  He got to fix all of it this week. It is still an inch to big a step so maybe next year he will add a new layer of deck boards on top and they can be the same way as the studding as they will be on top and he can have his pretty back. We are going to screen it in, put a roof on it and get some pretty burls for upright posts as well so that will be cool, already have the burls picked out. 

Poppie called to make arrangements for grain and blessing of blessings the man who runs the feed stores son is babysitting it for the long term and he was able to bring it to town for us, as he lives here, and we didn't have to take time to travel to go get it.  What a nice happenstance.  Poppie picked cukes and zucchini's for me.  I got to make up dill pickle relish, is it called that if it is Zucchini? I also got 3 jars of cucumber dill pickles as well, all the ones I get to make I do even if it is a little batch, that way they don't get to big and not make nice pickles.  I got to do them with the relish so that was great.  I have a whole bunch of less than 12 inch zucchini's awaiting becoming hamburger chips this morning.  I may try to make a small batch of Virginia chunks out of zucchini's but I will have to adapted the recipe so only making a little batch just encase it is a flop.  I am going to cut out the week of soaking as my mom tried it once, and to quote her, got slimy snakes, (the zucchini's turned into soft green slim that did look like snakes). I decided, to make up for the difference in the fruits, to try the ice cube soak that you have to do in regular recipes for the difference.  Let's hope it works but if not I will have tried.  I have the second day of step one on my regular Virginia chunks today.  So canning and laundry for me. 

Poppie says I worry, I know Poppie worries so we are taking to heart the message from Tuesday night.  Matthew 25-34.  We are going to seek first the kingdom of the Lord and his righteousness, and all things will be added to us.  The worrying will be gone as we try to let God have our worry.  We are now reading for one half hour in the mornings at 6, well as close to 6 as the Ladies can drag themselves out and join us, so the Lord will be the first thing we seek everyday as a remembrance that we are putting the Lord first in  our lives in all ways.   Have a great and worry free day.... Tomorrow.