Sunday, May 31, 2015

Visiting Grandparents...

Yesterday was a mostly peaceful day, except for when my mom started going in to shock (and we're not sure why?). She was the deepest red you can think of, and shaky. Yikes!
Thanks to those of you who were praying. 

This morning, I weeded in the greenhouse while it sprinkled outside. Shortly before noon, I hopped in the Pacifica with my parents, as they were going to Mandan to visit Grandpa (and Grandma) at the care center and I wanted to see them too.  
 The goldfish and tiny waterfall outside of the care center.
 Grandpa still isn't feeling very well and doesn't have much of an appetite, but looked better than I expected. I'm glad he's where he can get help now, and that Grandma can take it a little easier with others to care for him.  They could both use prayers for being able to rest well at night... We visited a couple hours, then headed for the field to drop my dad off to seed sunflowers (and he got stuck on the first round---oops).

 It was time to get the chicks moved out of the house into a larger location (we've lost a few just due to them trampling each other).  My brothers turned this old stock tank into the chicks' new home. They put a pallet (complete with hinges) on top to keep the cats out and cut a hole for the heat-lamp, then we put the tank inside of the chicken barn. Hopefully they'll do well there and stay warm enough.
 The house seems so quiet tonight, and it smells good too, as my mom baked bread. :)

I'm really excited about tomorrow as I'll be going with Lauretta and the ladies in her family to go dress shopping for her!!! She has appointments at 3 different places, so hopefully she'll find the perfect gown. 
This is going to be so much fun!

Friday, May 29, 2015

Minnesota is beautiful!

Just look at it----trees and lakes and flowers...

 My mom and I arrived at the Dalquist farm in the early afternoon on Sunday. Michael took me exploring at his friend, Randy's place. This was the view from one of the hilltops:

 Little robins in the D's woodpile...
 Michael, his mom, Kathy, and my mom, Dawn, obviously discussing something of interest...
 On Monday, my mom and I went with Dale, Kathy and Michael to their Memorial Day family gathering. It was good to meet so many of Michael's uncles, aunts, cousins....and his grandparents (whose home we were at).
 Michael's brother, James as catcher...
 Michael at the bat...
Back at the farm:
Michael cell-grazes the dairy herd, so moves the electric fence every day so they can have fresh grass to munch on...

James and his fiancĂ©, Jenny stopped in Monday evening on their way back to their homes and visited a while. James drove Michael & I up the river a ways so we could get in the canoe and go for a ride. (The Little Elk river runs right through their farm.) That was really fun! We stopped a couple times to get out and look at a field and to look for a goose nest that Michael had found earlier in the year.

That night, the 5 of us watched "The Apple Dumpling Gang Rides Again" (Don Knotts and Tim Conway).....just because it's good to laugh. :) 

AND THEN: I received a text message from Lauretta
 It was a picture of her hand with a RING ON IT, announcing her engagement to a young man named Lee.
I'm SOOOOO happy for them!!!


The next morning, Michael & I went exploring in some woods that are several miles NE of their farm. We found several different kinds of wildflowers, ferns, mushrooms, ticks, heard a loon, and finally came to the hidden lake Michael knew was back there somewhere. We walked along the bank a ways, then decided to head back (and Michael kept us from getting lost, thankfully). 

On our way back to the farm, Michael drove through this lovely spot again. We went through here back in December when Andrew was along for ice fishing.
 It's even prettier now that it's so green.

When we got back, Kathy took my mom and I for a tour of Randall
(the small town that is right by the Dalquist's farm). 

She took us in the shoe shop first, as we'd heard a lot about that place from Michael.
Then we went in the quilt shop and looked around.
There were so many amazing things to see in  there!

We said our goodbyes at 4:00, as the Ds start chores at that time and we wanted to get home
 before dark. Here is one last picture----Sam in the grass.

As always, it was hard to leave,
but I'm glad that we have something that makes saying goodbye so unpleasant. :)
"Thank you, Lord!"

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Home again, home again...

What a WONDERFUL time we had in Minnesota!!  I have much to share about, but that post will not be finished this night. 

I was babysitting most of the day. It was a very sunny, hot morning, so I set up the sprinkler and the girls had a LOT of fun running through it. Zach also filled their new swimming pool with air so the girls splashed in the pool for a long time too. It was a wet day.

 Meanwhile, Vonn just sat around, chewing on his stroller strap...
Sure do love "My" Littles!

My dad got back to seeding sunflowers (it had rained half an inch while Mom & I were away), although it was still muddy in places. 

Thank you to those of you who've been praying for my grandpa Earl. He's somewhat stronger today and ate better too. My dad ended up going to Mandan to help Grandma (and his brother, Ronald) with Grandpa for a couple days, as he was doing so poorly, yet the hospital sent him home. It was all that the 3 of them could do to get Grandpa where he needed to go (to his bed or out of it and to his dialysis....). 

Saturday, May 23, 2015

*Silent blog ahead*

Yesterday was a very full day. My dad planted sunflowers. My mom went to Bismarck for running a bunch of farm errands and to visit Grandpa in the hospital (and she took Grandma out to eat). My brothers worked on getting the sprayer ready for action and helped my dad in the field for a while. That left house-cleaning and food preparation to me. I also had some time to plant some more seeds in the garden, and to go check the cows and get a picture of this day-old (at that time) cutie pie. I think she wins the "Cutest calf of the year" award on our farm! :) 

 Now that it MUST SURELY BE DONE FREEZING, I moved all my dwarf fruit trees and other assorted plants outside on the deck. Can you see the lemons?
Andrew headed up to the Bartletts' farm this morning with a load of young cattle that the B. family is buying. Andrew will stay overnight to visit with their family (and play 4-man chess perhaps?) and come home tomorrow sometime.

Tomorrow, my mom and I are heading East to visit Michael and his parents again!!! :) Sooooo, my blog will be silent at least until Tuesday evening. Prayers for safe travel would be appreciated.

Now I'm off to do some packing!

Thursday, May 21, 2015

Busy days of Spring...

This morning, we all got up early and, after my dad took Randy's loading chute back (we shouldn't need it anymore), we sorted off  and loaded up 9 cows to haul in to the Napoleon salesbarn. Then, I headed over to get Vonn and bring him to our farm for the day; Jacob left to go work for farmer Roger, rolling his fields; and after noon, Andrew left to pay for and pick up his "new" telehandler from a place in Hazen...
 My dad got the corn-planter ready and headed over to some of our rented land, only to have to return shortly, as he had tractor troubles. He did take the tractor and planter over later and Mom picked him up, but we're not sure if the troubles are over or not? Dad hopes to plant sunflowers tomorrow.

This afternoon, I planted the rest of our many onions and some other things too while Vonn slept in his play-pen that I had set up for him by the garden. 
(The blanket on top is just in case some birds in the tree up above were messy. )
 After returning Vonn to his Dad at 6:00, Andrew and I mowed the lawn around the house, and then my mom and I mowed across the road. We had a late supper!

Please keep my grandpa Earl in your prayers. I don't recall if I mentioned that he's in the hospital now. Grandma said tonight that he's a little better, but still doesn't have much energy and isn't eating much. Please pray for Grandma too, as I know this is very hard on her.

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

"Where the deer and the antelope play"...

On the way over to work this morning, I saw this small herd of antelope in a field by the road. They didn't seem too scared of my car, so I was able to get a few pictures. Zach says that they can be a real problem in fields (eating and trampling them down), but it was still neat to see this bit of wildlife that isn't so common around these parts.  I saw them on my way home too, only on the other side of the road.

The only other big news from the day is that Andrew sold his telehandler.  He hopes to buy a different one someday, as they are handy machines to have on a farm.

Good night everyone.~

Returning to blogger-land!

The days just fly by!

It's late already, but I really want to get my blog updated, so I shall share some pictures and brief descriptions of some of what we've all been up to....

Saturday afternoon found us at my/our friend, Emmy T's high school graduation celebration. :) My dad stayed home to keep an eye on the possibly-calving cows, but the rest of us really enjoyed our time there. It was the first time most of us had been to their home. Michael met up with us there too, so what could be better? ;)  We played a lot of volleyball and visited with friends, old and new. 
 Not the best picture of the smiling graduate (blurry), but it is the best I have sadly. We got a picture taken together, but it is on Emmy's camera. :)

 My brothers spent the night at the T. family's house and left from there the next morning to go meet up with someone north of Minneapolis to buy a large lawn-mower. Meanwhile, my mom and I rode the 3+ hours to our home with Michael and had some good talking time.

The next day, the F. family came over to join us in celebrating my dad's birthday. My mom had invited them secretly, so my dad was surprised when they pulled in the muddy yard. Some extended family members were invited as well, but for various reasons, couldn't make it. 

 We played games and ate a lot of food and visited. My brothers got home in time for a late supper, just as the F. family was leaving in the sleet/snow.

It froze pretty hard the past two nights, which did some damage to crops and gardens/flowers.

The rain/snow did stop eventually and the sun made a short appearance on Monday. My dad, brothers, Michael & I fixed up some fence to make a couple pens to sort and "store" cows in. We did some other odd jobs around the place too, and then Michael had to leave again. :(  It's getting harder and harder to say goodbye. I am very grateful for the times that it does work out for us to be together though!  

Oh, and Michael brought along some of his gopher traps and caught the naughty gopher who has been digging up our flower beds!  He also brought me wildflowers from MN... He's so thoughtful!
 This morning, we tagged about a dozen calves who needed ear-piercings, then we sorted off cow/calf pairs. Praising God for safety once again, as there is always a certain amount of danger when working with so many large animals that don't exactly want to cooperate.
 The job was accomplished shortly before noon, at which time I cleaned up and hopped in my car to go babysit the Littles for the afternoon and part of the evening. 

While I was gone, a rancher came with 3 trailers to load up 33 cow/calf pairs and to take them to their new home about an hour NE of here. It's sad to see them go, but it's needful.

Later, my brothers went and helped a neighbor work his cows and calves. 
They came home with quite the sunburns.
 It was sunny out today, so we spent a couple hours out of doors.
This picture is of a babysitter, smiling at the camera while the baby decides he wants to eat a dandelion. Actually, "She" is holding onto the stem of the dandelion so that said baby could NOT eat said dandelion.
 Our "Skunk heifer" had a skunk baby today.  :) I wonder if anyone will want to buy these two??  
 Andrew has been giving this calf of his some TLC for the past week at least. Tonight he thought he'd try to feed it some milk from a bottle, in case the mother doesn't have enough milk, but the baby refused to drink. The mama was more interested than he was. She used to be a bottle calf herself.
Tomorrow, it's back to babysitting for me. I don't know what the others will be up to, but I'm sure they'll find plenty to do, as they usually do.

This song was playing on the radio on my way home tonight and I hope you enjoy it too.. :)

Now, I'd best get some rest.

Friday, May 15, 2015

Catching up again...

 Yesterday was my dad's birthday. :) 

I was able to get off of babysitting a bit earlier than usual and helped Mom cook him up a feast. 

After present-opening time, we left for Wishek to attend our district's reorganization meeting at 8:00. My brother, Andrew ran for chairman, but a more experienced man got that position. Then, his friend nominated him again for vice-chair and he ALMOST got voted in for that----just one vote shy! Several people there encouraged Andrew to not get discouraged and to try again next time, so we'll see what happens in 2 years. God definitely closed that door this time.

Today was very full. I left earlier than usual to babysit until 6:30, when Paula got home. It's always a pleasure visiting with her!  

Tracy Jo helped me mix up and roll out pizza crusts for our noon meal. She was having so much fun poking holes in the dough...

When I got home, the house was a complete disaster still as Mom and Andrew had gone to Bismarck for the day to get birthday party supplies and farm supplies. They drove my car, as I asked them to get new tires put on the front, which they did. 

I'm really looking forward to tomorrow!! My friend, Emmy is graduating from high school, so all of us (except my dad who is staying home to keep an eye on the cows) are going over to the Breckenridge area to attend that. Michael is going to meet us there and then he'll drive my mom and I home afterwards, as my brothers will spend the night at Emmy's family's place and then go from there to somewhere North of Minneapolis to pick up the big lawn mower that Andrew bought via an online auction yesterday.  On Sunday, we're hosting a small birthday party here for my dad. We should have plenty of cake and pie, so come on over if you want to help celebrate! :)

Now I'd better get some sleep...

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

"Cheep, cheep, cheep"

Yes, our chicks arrived today, all the way from "Cackle Hatchery" in Missouri. :)

Since I was babysitting, I brought the Littles over for most of the day so they could enjoy the babies too.

 They LOVED the chicks and kept checking on them throughout the afternoon.

 I had to teach Tracy Jo how to properly hold them, as she was being a bit daring... :)
 My mom and Johanna were naming the chicks. I think this one was George. (I did order 2 cockerels).
 It was so fun to watch the delight of the girls!
 So far, so good. No fatalities and they're pretty quiet tonight---all 65 of them.
 Oh, and I just have to post a picture of this ever growing and changing munchkin. 
My brothers went out in the pasture with the backhoe attachment on the tractor and dug a hole. A HUGE hole. This picture does not do it any kind of justice, as you can't see that it's about 15' deep.
 They will fill the hole with rocks, but they needed the dirt for the house project...
 Jacob hauled the dirt in; Andrew packed it down; and Dad did the fine-tuning and leveling and such.
 This is what it looked like tonight when I went over to get my 4-wheeler to check cows, (after finally getting our potatoes in the ground.) The site is almost ready for the pier-guy to come in now.
 My Liza had a baby!!  Some years, she has some very unique looking babies. This time, her calf has a cute white spot in the middle of his forehead and a little white under his tummy, but he's mostly black.
Anyone want to buy a cow/calf pair? ;)

I'd better get to bed. I'm tuckered. 

God is good, all the time, and all the time, God is good. I'm grateful for so many blessings!!!

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Our very local plumbers...

One of the projects the guys have been working on the last few days (besides one more grain cleaning job and keeping calves alive and running to town for parts and fixing 4-wheelers and talking to the banker about a future project and...) is getting the sewer pipes put down for the new house. 

 They first had to dig the trenches...

 Working on getting that wood post out of there...
 Glad that Dad knows how to do so many things!
Putting the extremely toxic-smelling purple primer on...
 Then goes the stinky glue... You have only a matter of maybe 5 seconds to get it angled just the way you want it before the glue bonds and you will NOT be moving the pipe any further.
 Phone call...
 The holes left after the removal of the wood post and other pipes. 
Remind you of a certain cartoon character?
I was helping with a few odd jobs over there last night and they got it to this point. Today they worked on getting it sloped just how they need it to be and packing dirt under and around it.
 Andrew spent some of his hard-earned money on a fancy machine today...
 (It's a conveyor for grain.)
It was really funny to watch him "drive" it to it's parking place!!

Oh, and here are 5 of the 7 pies I baked yesterday. I put them in the freezer so they last until Sunday (my dad's birthday party).
Tomorrow, we're getting a bunch of noisy things in the mail. Can you guess what they are???