a tale of tails, tenacity, and tedium, as told by me, usually barefoot and bellowing

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Frosty Holiday Greetings...

This N That

 When I came home from work yesterday, I saw my sisters in the garden.  Picking, picking, picking and covering for the impending frost.
We still have goodies every where and it seems too early  but it is October.  That flame-broiled summer we had left us wanting more beautiful days with shorter nights.
Our late garden has been wonderful, full of green beans, peppers, radishes, okra, greens and tomatoes.  Our snow peas are blooming.  We can hope the cover saved them from the frost and we will soon have fresh snow peas.

The Gelbvieh bull Dennis donated to the athletic department left the farm today.  Selling chances on him raised over a thousand dollars for new sports equipment or for what ever the department needs. Now, if I can just get a receipt from the school, that would be a nice tax deduction.

This week at work has been one for the books!  My boss called me personally to chew me about something.  Contradictions have been floating in emails...do this, no say that...and then denial of the first set of instructions.  I have documented each phone call and each email...CYA!  It's not just me, no, I am not alone with this...we are all affected, one way or the other...just makes for a good week.  Today is the first day of the new week, so I am hoping things will improve.

I have an extra foot ball player this weekend, a friend of Andrew's and Jake will be here later to spend the day.  I am not sure what Papa and all the boys will do while I HAVE TO WORK but I am sure they will have fun.

Off to the salt mines!

Friday, October 29, 2010

Naked With Two Men...

one at my head, one between my legs!

Bet that caught your attention!  It was a long time ago, thirty-five years ago, if I remember correctly. It was during the birth of our second daughter, Maria.  Happy Birthday, Maria Danielle!!!

After the first birth (Martin and Melissa) I experienced, I gave the doctor orders this time.  Hubby would be there with me, there would be no use of drugs and all would be natural.  The doctor looked at me like I had lost my last marble. I said, if you can't manage that, I'm going somewhere else.  He finally agreed.

The previous week I had gone into labor but stopped.  Home, I went.  The nurse said, you have an appointment next week and I said, won't be back until I'm ready.

Labor pains hit.  I cleaned the kitchen, washed the dishes, cleaned the living room.  By the time I decided to wake hubby, I could not tie my shoes.  We jumped in the vehicle, called my mom.  She met us at the highway. We almost threw Melissa out the window to get to the hospital in time.

At the hospital, the nurse laughed and said, thought you weren't coming 'til you were having that baby.  I said that is why I am here...she still didn't believe me.  We finally convinced them to check me in and Doc came by and said don't make me miss my piece of cake, we are having a party.

They left me in the room and went about their business.  I buzzed them on the intercom and said, ladies, I think you had better get in here, this baby is coming and you have done nothing to prepare.  They laughed. They came and they checked and they panicked!

To make a long story short, we traveled quickly to the delivery room, got fussed at by the doctor.  Hubby, the doctor and I were all joking during the delivery.  Had a little trouble with the shoulders and we joked about backing the truck up to the window and winching the baby out.  We got down to business, less than thirty minutes after we arrived, we had a bouncing baby girl, nine pounds eight ounces. Doc mentioned since it was so easy for me, maybe we should all go into the baby business.  We make 'em, he delivers, we sell 'em and divide the profits...easy money.

Doc was bragging on me and saying, what a great job I did...I begged him to let me walk out of the delivery room.  I said, come on, Doc, let's really blow their minds!  He would not go for it...some nonsense about hospital policy.

As soon as I got dressed, I wanted to go home.  Doc finally relented by clamping Maria's navel with a different clamp.  We went home the same day. 

If you're wondering about the cake, the nurses saved Doc a piece.

Happy Birthday, Maria!  May all your dreams come true!  Love ya, kid!!

Thursday, October 28, 2010

She Liked Dogs.

Her husband thought it was cute that all the dogs came to her and so he indulged her with this attraction he labeled a weakness.

Each stray seemed to know where she lived and gravitated there, pulled by some unseen force that placed them in her yard and on her doorstep. She welcomed all and fed and cared for them as if they were her children since she had no children to call her own.

Things began to change as the marriage grew older. The dogs, the husband once thought were cute, now angered him. He would return home from work and any dog close was bound to be injured, one way or another. The wife did not like this but kept her own counsel and trained the dogs to leave the room when the husband came home in one of his terrible moods.

The husband watched. It seems his wife and the dogs could communicate with no movements, no words, as if they could read each other’s thoughts. She rarely spoke with her husband any more…she rarely spoke at all. This made him angry; the dogs were taking something from him.

One evening the husband came home. The dogs were wary; they could sense he was more angry than usual. As they curved away from him and moved aside, they seemed to group protectively, silently around the wife. As the husband approached they growled, one or two, just a low growl, just a small warning…no harm would come to their leader.

Infuriated by even a hint of aggression from the dogs, he did not react but chose to leave instead…and drink. Returning home, he found his wife in the bedroom alone and locked the door behind him.  He wanted to discuss the disrespect she had shown. He punched her to make his point; he slapped her to make her believe…and did both, again and again.

She heard the dogs coming down the hall. They scratched at the door, trying to reach their leader, their queen. He laughed as he reached down to grab her hair and drag her to her feet. Slipping in the blood and tears that had pooled on the hard wood floor, he fell, striking his head against the bed. It dazed him and allowed her time to reach the door.

The husband heard his wife, as the door opened, speak softly, speaking the first word he had heard in months.

That word,

that request,

that command was…


Wednesday, October 27, 2010

It Was A Long Night...

as the mother rocked the baby in her grandmother's rocking chair, the only real chair in the small cabin.  Mustard poultices, hot steam, baked onions...nothing seemed to help...the fever remained along with the death rattling cough of the croup.

She kept adding wood to the fire in the hand laid rock fireplace she and her husband had made when they raised the cabin.  And she rocked and rocked, the baby wrapped in the quilt her mother and grandmother had made.

Tears slid quietly down her cheeks as she wished her mother or grandmother were there to tell her what to do to save her baby, her only baby, her precious baby girl.

Her husband had left to bring the nearest neighbor who knew something of doctoring but that was miles away and it would be morning before he returned. For now it was just mother and child, rocking and rocking and praying.

The sounds of the racking coughs tore each fiber of the mother's being, thinking, if only I could take the sickness and let my child be well.  The silent tears rolled down the mother's cheeks as she stared into the fireplace... rocking, rocking.

The mother dozed in her exhaustion.  A voice woke her, a voice she hadn't heard in years, how could it be? She heard, "Child, I am with you."  She looked around the room and saw no one.  She must have been dreaming.  It was the voice of her grandmother, gone all these years, how could she hear her voice?

Then she noticed something else...there was no coughing from the tiny bundle she held.  Oh, God, No, please, no!  She frantically removed the quilt and felt the baby's forehead...not hot anymore.  She leaned closely and heard the sweetest sound on earth, a baby's breathing as it sleeps. The fever had broken!  The worst had passed. 

The cabin was quiet.  The only sounds were the crackling fire, the baby's peaceful breathing, two women  humming and the rocking chair...rocking, rocking, rocking.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Johnny Cash - 'Hurt"

The first time I heard this song, I almost cried and that was without the words or even knowing who sang it.
Andrew was quietly playing and I asked, what's that song?  He smiled and told me while he played, then he showed me.

Sometimes the electric amplification drills through my brain as Andrew plays in the afternoon but not today.  Today he is playing Hurt and I type with cold chills as the beauty of the music envelopes me.

From Gregorian Chant lovers through Classical, Country, Blues, Jazz and Rock followers, you have to appreciate the message of this song...and feel the sadness.

The Lack Of Power...

woke me this morning.  The absence of all electrical noises always wakes me...for a moment I wondered what was happening.  It had been such a long time since I had heard that magnificent sound...it was rain!!!
Life-giving, earth-renewing, air-cleansing rain!!!  It was a blessed sound to wake up hearing in a land that has ground so dry in some places, the cattle walking throw up little clouds of dust.

The rain has stopped now before five AM but who knows what the day may hold for us.  I would like to see a old-fashioned slow three day rain but the chances are slim. 

Now I enjoy the morning sounds of water dripping from the roof, crickets and frogs singing their rain song as the roosters wake in the trees, crowing to welcome the dawn.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Let's Play Some Football!

Seventy-One is all I see!
Once again, he gets to go for the toss.
71 and getting ready
Where's the ball???
Zander has over come his fear of the noise.
When every one is quiet,
he screams, hey, hey, at the top of his voice!
The team played well.
Andrew got a touch down and some two point conversions.
He tryed two other touchdowns
On one a face mask hold was called and they gained ten.
On the other, he was just at the goal,
and he got pushed out of bounds.
So goes the game.
Everyone got to play,
the team was eager,
we had a few early starts
but I believe every one played  with their hearts.

This was not the final score,
I believe it was 38-0.
Now I await their return to see
how Andrew's stitched chin  faired in this game.


was Mom's birthday.  She would have been eighty-three, young for today's standards.  After all this time, I still miss her.
Mom loved flowers,
all of us.
I hope she is proud of me,
I never really knew.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

How Do You Know???

The muffled thump-thump of the heli-blades vibrated the ground as it repeated the search pattern, although none of their special devices could detect the location of our carefully constructed shelter.  Inside we were quiet as if we could be heard, holding our breaths until the sounds retreated, even then, we spoke in whispers as the group made plans.

We had no defense except our intelligence.  Those above had made certain of that during the last days, the mass government movement to disarm the citizens had been successful.

It was down to them against us, "us" wasn't faring so wonderfully but we survived.  Knowing how to simply disappear, that was how we survived, the five of us...

Smacks a little of Red Dawn, doesn't it?  How do you know, when you write, it's not something you have read and filed away without a marker?

If I wrote a story of a child following an Armadillo down its tunnel, we would immediately think of Alice In Wonderland. If I wrote of three cowboys sons growing up motherless on a large ranch with their father, most would think of Bonanza.  If I wrote of one surviving sailor adrift at sea with a dead bird, we remember The Ancient Mariner...so how do you know when it is memory or it is your thoughts???


A choice is a rock thrown into a pond,
 the ripples move outward,
with no knowledge of how far they reach.

I wonder about choices,
choosing this path or that,
 would the ripples change?

Today, I stop to throw a pebble
and view a different path,
and dream of changes.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Sunday: Second Half, Trimming Trees

Sunday Morning Work/Play

The horses gathered, curious about what I was doing.  Shoveling that organic gold, the dust rolled it was so dry.  I managed to brush, detangle, and fly wipe all and loved every minute of it.  I tell you I am in my element in the barn.
Broken Arrow has to be almost on me.  I know, I know, keep them out of my personal space...but I can't do it.  The horses are as spoiled as every other animal around here.
Papa and Jake had to join me, they were just as curious as the horses.  I believe in this picture Jake is saying, let me down, Papa!
 I think horse loving is already in Jake's blood.  I guess it did not hurt, he first rode a horse while still in diapers.
We didn't ride today.  It would have been a perfect day, but sometimes, work comes before pleasure.  In fact, that happens a lot on a farm, so you take your pleasures where you find them and keep on working.  It is the perfect lifestyle for me.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Andrew's New Pants...

Saturday, I had a plan.
Pick up E strings,
go to Penney's to purchase Andrew some pants,
go to Wal Mart for groceries etc,
then go eat.
First stop, the music store.
Andrew is playing and people are enjoying it.
They came by to compliment him.
Papa's head is swelling
and Andrew walked with a new guitar
and amp...OMG!
Planning on the next grandson, Jake,
learning how to play.
Then Andrew's black guitar (Jake's favorite)
will become Jake's...don't tell, it's a secret.
We did not get to Penney's, 
We did not get to Wal Mart.  
We ate at Colton's and returned home.
So much for my plans!

Marcy Has Outdone Herself!!!

With her lighting,
with her fall foliage,
her colors
the dew,
and her eye for the unusual.

Saturday, October 16, 2010

PJ Hoover's Prize Arrived!!!!

Just look at this glorious bundle of goodies!  Bookmarks and post cards and a wonderful book.  All won when I joined a contest at PJ Hoover's.

I discovered PJ quite by chance and have enjoyed her posts.  She is a published author and also is a member of Texas Sweethearts, a group of accomplished authors who write for children and teens.

I won an advanced reader's edition of Brains For Lunch by K.A. Holt.  "Middle school is tough-but it's even tougher when you're a zombie."  I can't wait to dive in and enjoy this book.

Thanks, PJ! 

Drop by for a visit.  PJ and the Texas Sweethearts are always having some kind of giveaway.

From Garden To Home

Marcy returning from the garden
with a bucket of goodies
to arrange for home enjoyment.
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