Friday, September 30, 2011

In That Moment

   A day like any other slips into afternoon. As I make the bed, my husband and I share tidbits from the day; updates on teens and schedules, the well and the weather. During the course of this little moment of our day a plink, plink. is heard. Silence falls as we strain to hear more. Plink, plink.
   Dazed and hesitant we step through the house and gaze through the screen door. Dust swirls in tiny tornadoes across the yard as Doc lets out a warning Eeyonk! Eeeeyoonkkk! Stepping outside in the flurry of leaves gusting and swooping in a torrent of tiny droplets. Together we stand..amazed and still..soaking it all in: wind and cloud, water and leaves. Majestic and amazing.
   The working man snaps into action; with farm boy in tow chores are done quickly amidst mighty claps of thunder. In just moments the simple flutter of wind transforms into a mighty fury; thunder shakes the earth as lightning cracks and flashes.
   Now indoors, we wander from window to window assessing the sway of each tree trying to predict where it could fall. So many are dead and many possibilities. With a crack and thump a neighbor's tree uproots, fortunately missing any vital structure on their property. Lights go dark; without the usual electricity the storm takes on a power of its own..raising slight alarm, and yet....
   In that moment something takes over..a feeling you cannot explain..a sense you cannot identify. Calm flows to every inch of your moves in slow motion. In that moment priorities become so clear..the clutter of life flutters away in the winds as worries and frivolities are washed away with the rains. In that moment is a sense of unity..a bonding of each other as we stand at the mercy of that which we cannot control..a togetherness like no other. In that moment God reveals the depths of our hearts...the gentle squeeze of His Hand pushes forth the inner being. In that moment...we see how small we truly are and mighty He truly is. Life is so that moment.

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Back to the Prairie: The Words I Dreaded to Hear

   On occasion the day in and day out of farm life took its tole; even my grandmother got restless once in a while. It was in those times she would utter the words I dreaded to hear....the ladies are coming for a party.

   Morning dawns as soft light slips through the bedroom window; gauzy curtains float gently with the cool breeze. Her hands and mine bring together the pieces of a farmhouse breakfast. Frying sausage is a least favorite thing for me..I hate the way the grease pops and stings; ouch! But the eggs finally do me in...the sight of runny yolks swimming in the greasy sizzling skillet makes me gag. Set the table then and hurry up! Her sharp tone alerts me deep within...something is something will be different.
   After the start of day chores are behind us an unusual box hits the counter: tulle and ribbon, tiny white baskets and fancy mints..a can of nuts and dainty tea cups. Now I am starting to panic. It won't be long until I hear them..those words I dread. The ladies are coming for a party. A party..oh, no.
   I know what those words mean...dresses and doilies, 'proper' manners and fancy dishes, being clean with you hair all in means food you can't eat and dainty things you can't play fidgeting and no talking. It means...I'm doomed! Yes, I'm sent to get cleaned up, dressed up, slicked down and stomach churns as my heart drops. The ladies are coming for a party.
   In a flurry of chatter and fragrance they arrive; best dresses and red lipstick, hair 'just so' and shiny 'pocket books'. Self consciously I watch them from the corner of the kitchen doorway... if only I could be invisible. My grandmother (who doesn't look like herself at all today..powder and lip paint?) startles me with a call to action; I am to serve the treats and drinks. You have got to be kidding.. did she forget how clumsy I am; that I spill everything...and that she told me a dozen times to stay clean? Nevertheless, my shaky hands take the tray as I hesitantly tread where no respecting farm girl dare tread.
   The gushing, cheek pinching and red lip mark kisses are more than I can handle. The very second those cups are served and the pretty white baskets of nuts and mints frilled with tulle and ribbon are passed out I make a break for it. Breaking out the door, shedding shoes and ribbons like shackles, my spirit soars over sun warmed prairie grass. Down the gravel drive to the old gas pump where my bike is waiting...freedom! I'm off to find a favorite place..any one of them (there are so many)..ah, yes..the dark old barn...perfect! In no time at all I start to feel like, sun-kissed, straggly braids...sweet redemption. Well, at least until the next time I hear those dreaded words.

   Yes, it's true. I despised parties. In my young mind they robbed me of the comfort and routine of my beloved farm life; the plain and simple days of work; the livestock and gardens...fields and equipment.. that accepting life style I was so comfortable with. To this day, my discomfort for social gatherings remains as does my love for the barefoot, sun-soaked farm life...messy braids and all!

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

A Sweet Award Received and Shared

Liebster" is a German word meaning dear, sweet, kind, nice, good, beloved, lovely, kindly, pleasant, valued, cute, endearing, and welcome.

The Liebster is awarded to spotlight up and coming bloggers who currently have less than 200 followers.

   What a sweet honor! Thank you to both Jamie from Meadow Creek blog and dr momi from Homesteading at Redtail Ridge.

    I award the Liebster to:

Pioneer Mom at

Rebecca at

Jane at

Hannah at

Beth at

   Please hop over and check out these beautiful blogs..and, hey, let them know who sent ya! 

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

What Were You Thinking?

   It was a simple request-- please pick up the branches in the loafing area-- sounds easy right? With strong dry winds in our drought stricken area, branches have been falling from the trees...some of them are, I asked my working man and farm boy if they could wrangle up some of the big ones. A simple task...or so I thought.

   The girls and I were inside cleaning up afternoon dishes and projects when....crack, thud, crash!...startled us from our work. Knowing what wind and drought stressed trees means, we bolted out the door to find...

   It seems a pine tree fell in the very area my guys were working in..and landed right across part of the stalls, also taking out the gate. Panic struck me until my husband and my farm boy came around the corner of the barn. Assessing the damage..well... it didn't hit the barn, only the outer panels of the stalls, it didn't hit the power lines or transformer pole behind the barn, it didn't wipe out the fences..and no animals or people were injured. However....

   While we were able to hand the gate back up (after some serious crow bar and hammer action), it will never be the same. So far, the herd hasn't decided they can get out over it yet...let's keep it that way. There is a whole lot more to clean up that we initially started with...I'll just say I'm not impressed with that and be done. Then, the final bit of information is.....

   It wasn't the wind. Believe it or not my husband did this, however, the tree did not do exactly what he had planned. He planned to open the gate guide it past all the stalls...and to clean it up rather quickly. The tree had other fell where it wanted, smashed things at will, made a mess and broke the chainsaw in the process..therefore staying where it fell.
   Yes, this could have been worse...but I had to ask....what were you thinking?

Monday, September 26, 2011

Fiber Arts Monday: WIP Update

   It's been a long weekend; hot and dry-- just plain yucky. Aside from a short visit from family, my weekend was crunch time at the quilt table. Here's how it went:

   The Fall Wreath Dresden quilt is ready for binding. Shadow stitches, cross-hatching, and tumbling leaves have been hand quilted to enhance and stabilize the applique and piecework. Maybe the binding will be my 'during the algebra lesson' project...maybe.


   Snippets and strings came together in little squares for my crumb quilt. Some hearts and random shapes; a churn dasher and a peek a boo cute and fun! Of course, the crumb quilt does tend to leave the sewing area very messy...where are the little mice to clean this mess? It worked for the Taylor of Gloucester, why not me? Can you tell I love Beatrix Potter? She was so cooky and creative.

   Here is a close up of a favorite square; the churn dasher-ish one. Bold and crazy---it fits the kids who voted this a fave.

   This one is just way too cute---funny little monkeys! Who doesn't love discovering a few misfits peeking out of the grass in their quilt? Love it.

   And then there was that other thing....our anniversary. Nineteen years, teens and tears- triumphs and laughter. Happy anniversary to us!

   Enjoy the start of your week!