I need to check into planting some.
Monday, March 30, 2009
I need to check into planting some.
Janda and Pace are the "grand prize winners." Pace, who just turned 5, thinks that Superman flew up and got his shoe hung in the tree then had to leave fast to save someone so he left it there.
Pace will receive a bottle of bubbles and Janda will get a bottle cap necklace and 1 dozen eggs from our "farm."
My sister asked a few of her students what they thought:
Tatiana (4th Grader): a crow got it and took it for a nest.
Buck (4th Grader): maybe a squirrel took it and placed it there to keep his nuts in.
My sister's idea: the shoe is actually just part of the tree branch and it just looks like shoe. Just a trick from Mother Nature.
I'll be contacting my sister to see what an appropriate treat for her students is--we wouldn't want anyone at school to get into trouble.
Granny Sue had the most educational response. "This is what I have heard from a reputable source (policeman): it can be a signal that it's a place to get drugs--like a sales corner." She also suggested some more "happy" ideas. I'll be sending her a bottle cap necklace as well.
I did google "shoe in tree" and found out that some "shoe trees" have sprung up all over the country and in different parts of the world as forms of art. Sadly, the drug/gang related activity was also mentioned. Some cities are having trouble with shoes in power lines signalling places to buy drugs. Although this is something we'd all rather not know about, I think it is important for us to be aware of such things.
Thank you all for participating. It was fun.
Saturday, March 28, 2009
Friday, March 27, 2009
A blizzard has been blowing through our area today. We've been fortunate to be on the edge of most of it. The following pictures chronicle the day from sun-up to about 5:00pm. I tried to take the windmill from our front porch throughout the day for a reference.
It was interesting around 5:00, we had drifts and bare spots. The ground temperature is warm enough that it was slushy. The wind blew it off of unprotected places. We had bands of snow blow through throughout the day and are expecting a little more this evening. North of us it is much worse.
UPDATE: The story and caption contest are open until Sunday--be brave and enter!
Thursday, March 26, 2009
We are in a blizzard watch for Friday. Notice how we'll warm right back up by Sunday. Also notice our ever-present wind. T.S. wants to move to Houston (Magnolia) because, "They don't have wind there."
Wednesday, March 25, 2009
Tuesday, March 24, 2009
horns. Actually it is one of the mama cows currently residing in our pasture.
What would you put as a caption for this photo??
No one ever comments, but if someone comes up with a great title/caption, I might just have my first blog give away. Prize to be determined.
You should take that as a sign of things to come.
We travelled down I-35 and got stuck in traffic. It turned out to be quite comical. We laughed at people crossing the median and wondered if any of them would get stuck.
We saw some bluebonnets, too.
Turns out that taking little things like this in stride helped out later in the trip. We planned a visit to Brenham to tour the Blue Bell Creamery. Turns out, the rest of Texas did too. The line was long (sorry, didn't think of a picture until we were already gone) and we were unable (or unwilling to wait in a long line not knowing if we'd make the tour or not) to take the tour.
Monday, March 23, 2009
The highlight of the week for the kids may have been playing in the sprinkler and then having manicures and pedicures as well as makeovers when the very talented neighbor came to stay so the adults could take a trip to College Station. The best part of the week for me?
- Seeing my sister and her family
- NO responsibilities--the harsh reality of real life hit me like a brick today
- Going to College Station and hanging out with adults--remembering good college times and making new memories as well
More to come--just haven't had time to upload pictures or organize my thoughts (don't hold your breath on the last one)
Saturday, March 14, 2009
- Disney World--this has always been a dream of mine
- Lots of family adventures
- Spend more time doing what I enjoy than doing what I don't
- Have a job that doesn't feel like a job
- Surround myself with people that make me smile and feel needed and loved
- Go on a cruise
- Go to Las Vegas and Hawaii and Alaska and lots of national parks...okay, you get the idea--travel to some cool places some with my kids, some with friends and some just with Robby
What's on your list?
BTW--I don't think any list like this is ever complete or set in stone. It is static--always changing. What was a priority one day may not be the next...
Friday, March 13, 2009
Things on this list might include:
- Travel to the moon
- Visit every continent
- Jump out of an airplane
- Win the lottery (of course if this happens, all of the above might be attainable)
- Win a Nobel Prize
- End world hunger
See where I'm going with this? Me neither.
I guess what I'm trying to say is that it is okay to have big dreams and goals. But what may be more important than creating some check list of things to do before we die is to just live. Live in a way that fulfills you and makes the need for the list nonexistent.
Still to come: my list of things I'd REALLY like to do someday.
Thursday, March 12, 2009
We returned home from basketball practice and I began the task of putting up the chickens and cats for the night. We've been closing the cats in the garage. We had been leaving the door cracked--until Robby came face-to-face with the skunk. The cats are pampered. We haven't made them take the leap to being totally outside yet (remember, they were bottlefed--for more info on that, search this blog and the family blog for cats and kittens). Anyway, Talley was no where around. The kids kept asking me where he was, when I had seen him last and if he would come back.
I told my teary eyed daughter that that was the trouble with cats in the country, especially boy cats, they sometimes disappear and never return. As I lay in bed, I couldn't help trying to remember the last time I had seen the cat and it hit me. I had gone out to Robby's school pickup to look for some keys. I remembered tripping over Talley as I walked out to the pickup. I also remembered that Talley has this annoying habit of jumping into cars when the door is open.
So, I bundled up (it is cold tonight), grabbed a flashlight and headed out to the pickup. Sure enough, there was Talley, curled up on the seat waiting for me. I didn't check for damages (it was dark after all). I guess I should see if he made a mess in the morning.
I do know one thing, I am definitely up for Mother of the Year. Wait until I tell Sadie this story in the morning.
Do I have a bucket list? Do I need a bucket list? Aren't we taught to live life every day and be content with what we have? Should you make a list so you have direction in your life? What if you make a list and it is full of things that never get accomplished?
So, what do you think? Should we all make a bucket list? If so, should we specify how many things on it? Can you narrow life down to a top ten or top five list?
What's on your bucket list?
Monday, March 9, 2009
- After going outside you can "chew" your spit (and it is gritty).
- Your ears are as dirty as your four-year old's ears.
- The chickens are walking sideways. (I kept expecting to see one blow by Saturday)
It is dry and windy here. We have been fortunate so far to not have any fires in our area. The wind does hamper lots of things like playing outside and hanging laundry. I guess it's just part of living in the Panhandle.
Thursday, March 5, 2009
3 medium potatoes, peeled and cut into chunks
1 stick margarine
1 can cream of chicken soup
1 tsp. grated onion
2 cups milk
salt and pepper to taste
1. Melt butter and drop in potatoes and onion. Let that cook for a few minutes.
2. Add rest of ingredients.
3. Simmer 30 minutes or until potatoes are the texture and consistency you like. Stir often while cooking. This tends to stick, so don't just walk off once you get it started.
- I add several cloves of minced garlic.
- I generally use 4 potatoes, I like the soup thicker.
- At the end, you can add your favorite cheese and melt in.
- Crumbled bacon or pieces of ham (sometimes I use leftover deli-slices) are good toppings.
- I like to put corn in mine (Robby doesn't really, so I heat up some corn and put in my bowl.)
- This is just a basic recipe, you can jazz it up to suit your taste.
Monday, March 2, 2009
So here are the answers to some frequently asked questions:
Where we got our pullets:
- You can order online (I suggest McMurray Hatchery), but if you do this, you have to have a minimum order of 20 or more.
- We went to our local feed store--Town and Country Feed in Canyon, TX--and inquired. Rusty is so nice there that he lets you specify what breed and how many you want. When he gets enough to place an order he does. He calls when they come in and takes excellent care of them when they arrive. Take a large box or bushel basket when you go to pick them up.
- You do not need to order roosters unless you are planning to hatch your own eggs. Research the breed you are purchasing. Leghorns will usually not sit to hatch eggs. If you are just into egg production, I suggest ordering a straight run of pullets. It is a little more expensive, but worth it in my opinion.
What to do when you get the "day-old" chicks home:
- We start out with them in a large box with a heat lamp in the kitchen. As they grow, you can tell when it is time to move them outside.
- You have to dip each chick's beak in the water so they'll know what it is and take a drink. We start out with a jar lid for the water so it is not too deep. Some people put marbles in a bowl of water so they won't drown in it. (I found that this led to standing on the marbles and poop in the water.)
Once they are outside:
- We locked them in their house each night so they'd learn they are supposed to go in at night. Probably not necessary, but we had one chick that didn't understand this concept and got caught out in the rain.
- We kept the heat lamp on for several more weeks so they'd have the option in the house of heat or no heat.
- Our pens aren't very big, so we let them out daily to roam. We don't start this until they are pretty big.
Feed and Water:
- We went to Tractor Supply and bought feeders and waterers. You can just use shallow pans for this, but I think they waste a lot.
- We feed pig feed from our local elevator--Attebury Grain. We do this because it is cheaper, but any starter feed or layer feed will work.
- Since the feed is pig feed, we do add grit to the feed. When the hens start laying we add oyster shells to it to make the egg shells harder. You can also crunch up egg shells as you use them and feed back to the hens. (We get our grit and oysters at Tractor Supply)
- Our hens love lettuce and stale bread. In the summer they are a big fan of squash and corn on the cob. They especially love the worms on the corn.
- One of our hen houses has boxes (nests). We line those with shredded paper or with wood shavings.
- The other hen house doesn't have boxes yet. We put shavings or shredded paper in it.
Please let me know if you have more chicken questions. I'm not an expert, but love learning more about them and will be happy to help you find an answer. The McMurray Hatchery site is a good place to start looking for information.