Wednesday, November 8, 2017

Life Lately

Here's a quick and dirty rundown of life lately down our little dirt road. 

We (I) am trying to help Kenyon hone his fine motor skills and learn to cut along straight lines.  What better way to practice than by cutting out coupons for your mama?  Answer: There is no better way.  He cut out LOTS of coupons for me, regardless of my need.  I almost feel obligated to purchase two bottles of Miralax at this point just to use the 75 cent coupon he cut out for me.  What a sweet boy. 


Some afternoons, naptime is great for the mama.  Some afternoons, naptime goes more like this:


...and the mama accomplishes nothing.

Is this Halloween or just a nice, dress up occasion like church or a wedding?  I'll let you decide. 


I think the chinks and spurs gave it away.  It was our feeble attempt at Halloween.  I'm not particularly fond of the holiday and thus put minimal effort into it. The clothes really are some of the boys' nice church clothes and the chinks and spurs were mine from my youth.  Made me tear up seeing Kenyon wear them. 

I dreamed this 'Flapper Girl' outfit up about an hour before we walked out the door to trick-or-treat at three sets of grandparents' houses.  She was also wearing Mary Jane shoes.  Regardless of this dumb holiday, the kids looked sharp. 


If the weather is even close to decent, you'll find the boys down at the horse pen, hanging out with their friend, Honey.  If I had a nickle for every hour I did this during my childhood, I'd be rich.  I love seeing Kenyon and John instinctively do some of these very same things.  I wish every kiddo could spend some time just sitting on a fence, talking to their best friend.  


Again, this little girl and her 'nap time'.  She was such a perfect baby, but now that's she's getting some personality to her, I just don't know about this one.  Too late to send her back and it's a bit too early in the day to start drinking...


Our little, local library has a story hour every week.  This is my favorite craft to date - a bat.  We read a story that talked about swallowing a bat.  

There was an old lady that swallowed a bat.  
I don't know why she swallowed a bat.  
Imagine that!

Later, I asked Kenyon about the little old lady that swallowed a bat.  Why do you think she did that?  His response: "I dunno.  I think she needed to go grocery shopping or something because she didn't have enough food to eat." 

I love that he is so practical and has some critical thinking skills established.  


Wednesday, October 4, 2017

4 Year Old Wisdom

It is a beautiful, rainy morning outside.  There is no wind, no sun, no list of errands that we have to jet off to accomplish.  The windows on the house are opened wide which allowed me to listen to Kenyon's endless older brother wisdom that he was bestowing on John.  

Enjoy the following gems from a 15 minute time span. 

The boys enjoy picking the purple bean pods off my decorative bean vine (not edible). 
I now have a half-bushel sitting on a table for anyone that would like some.



Nobody step in that.  That is my potty.  We need to find a different spot to play in now.  Watch your feet, John.

***

Is that a snake?  If that is a snake, you're supposed to run fast and scream Mom said.

***

Are we supposed to not get dirty?  Is rain dirty?  I can just take a bath again.

***

It looks alive.  We're not supposed to take it in the house if it's alive.

(I have no idea WHAT was alive, nor do I care to find out.)

***

Dad's gonna go work on a pickup today.  Dad's gotta work on a lottttttt of pickups.

***

THAT is a big ol' caterpillar. 

(We are most definitely in a big ol' phase right now.  This particular description fits most anything these days.) 

***

Last night while running endless errands, we walked by a pop machine in a feed store.  The boys have never consumed pop.  The only beverage they identify with coming from aluminum cans is... you guessed it... beer.

John, we cant have any beer because we don't have any coins for the machine.

Sunday, September 17, 2017

The Decade

A wise woman once told me that when you have children, you lose a decade of your life.  I was a bit taken aback when she first dropped this little nugget of wisdom upon me.  Surely not.  An entire DECADE?  

For all you Lutherans out there...

THIS IS MOST CERTAINLY TRUE. 



This is the decade where we live for naptimes and
 if you can't respect the naptimes we probably don't need you in our life right now. 

This is the decade where grandmas can be paid in snuggles and giggles.*  
(*Not from their own offspring, but from the grandbabies.) 


This is the decade where birthdays are a big deal.


This is the decade where memes like this hit a little too close to home at times. 


The decade where you ride a camel if your kid asks you to. 


...Or ride down a super giant slide, even if you really don't like heights.


 The decade where running snap tests (or any chore) takes 100 times longer than it should because you have so many little helpers. 


The decade where you are eternally stuck in a rocking chair with a nursing baby and random creepers feel the need to check on you periodically. 


The decade where you blink and suddenly your kid can write letters all by himself. 


The decade where you tell stories to your great grandma and she plays along like it's the best story in the history of the world. 


This is the decade where you can sing Tanya Tucker lullabies to make your kiddos grin.


The decade where you can wear a straw hat after labor day, a t-shirt and shotgun your boots and no one asks you if you're from Oklahoma. 


I think my friend was right.  Life is such a blur right now that sometimes it does feel like one day we'll blink and a decade will have passed.  

But what a hell of a decade this is. 

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Happy Thoughts

Life has been weighing heavily upon me recently.  There are many things in others' lives I wish I could change right now.  Things that just simply aren't fair.

I cannot change these circumstances because I seem to have misplaced my magic wand (it's probably under the stack of laundry on my couch that needs folded); therefore I'll attempt to alleviate my mood by focusing on the good things in life.  Perhaps some of these grins will perk up more than just my day as well.  My apologies on the random photos.  Random is all my feeble mind can manage today.

Kathryn smiles often and just yesterday began to laugh.  Her laugh is one of the purest, sweetest sounds in the world. 

Last Saturday I stepped waaaaay out of my comfort zone and participated in a 5K.  Whatever happened to the 2 mile 'fun runs' of my youth?  This was over 3 miles through a hay meadow, pushing a stroller with a two month old baby and sopping wet feet from the heavy dew.  Not something I think I want to attempt again tomorrow, but certainly an enjoyable experience.  Many thanks to my friend Amanda for the push to participate.  Even if I was the very last person to cross the finish line.  

Very. Last. One. 


It was a beautiful morning for a walk, and by walking insanely slowly I was able to take photos like this one without blurring the image.  That was my real reason for walking so slow.  *cough, cough


I'm in love with my simply squeezable and kissable niece, Madeline.  Even though I have my own baby, I never pass up an opportunity to hug and kiss on another one. 


We've had an abundance of rain lately, and one can't complain about that in mid-August.  The boys have thoroughly enjoyed playing and splashing in the puddles. 


Kenyon likes to prove his manliness by picking up objects both great and small.  All stud, all the time. 


He may be a goof, but he's my goof and I love him dearly for it. 


 I casually asked if anyone was ready for lunch and John came running around the corner of the house and attacked me.  Apparently he was hungry.


Where flowers bloom, so does hope.
-Lady Bird Johnson


He fills my life with good things.
Psalm 103:5


Blessed are they that see beautiful things in humble places where other people see nothing.
-Pissaro


To plant a garden is to believe in tomorrow.
-Audrey Hepburn



Thursday, August 10, 2017

Whatever You Do

On the last night of our county fair there is a livestock auction held, just as is the case in most counties around the country.  Children take their animals to the ring one last time, knowing that their animals will then be loaded up on trailers and taken to a meat locker.  It's a tough lesson to learn, but one that must be taught.  It's simply the circle of life.  

A word of caution:  If you are a hormonal, nursing mother, whatever you do, do not walk behind the auction block.  

If I had a nickel for every puffy eyed child that gave me a brave smile as they unlocked their arms from a parent's waist, I'd be rich indeed.  


Monday, July 31, 2017

That Kid

Last night, my one year old and three year old ran around the county fair like wild banshees.  They were covered in dirt from head to toe and having the time of their life.

The three year old found an egg in one of the chicken cages in the corner of the show barn. He then found and told the seven year old owner about it.  The seven year old was so gracious and gave the egg to his new protege.  He let the little one tag along as he did his chores, changing out water and filling feed pans.  No one demanded, asked, or even suggested that he take the little one under his wing; that kid just felt it was the right thing to do.


Earlier that day, the seven year old boy stood outside the ring with his animal before the show, nervous and anxious and terrified and worried and excited and every other feeling possible on the spectrum.  A thirteen year old girl squatted down, looked him in the eye and reviewed with him the process of showing his animal.  She helped calm his fears and gave him confidence that he was more than capable of rocking it in the ring.  Again, no one suggested this budding teenager take a little one under her wing, that kid just felt it was the right thing to do.

Later, the thirteen year old girl was practicing to show an unfamiliar animal in the round robin that evening and didn't have a clue where to begin.  Showing horses is completely different than showing hogs and she needed a crash course, fast.  A college aged girl thought back fondly of her days in the show ring and took ten minutes to help the younger girl learn how to pivot her horse and where to properly hold her hands. Again, no one suggested the college student take a younger one under her wing; that kid just felt it was the right thing to do.

We are so fortunate to live in a place where we all know that kid.

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Learn By Doing

One of my favorite bible verses is found in Proverbs.  

Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it. 
Proverbs 22:6

I realize this verse probably pertains more to shaping a child's moral fiber than shipping cattle, but I also feel that the two are not mutually exclusive either.  We are trying to immerse our children in our lifestyle as much as possible.  First, because we have no choice.  The cattle and crops are all around us and you can't help but become all consumed by it.  Secondly, we do feel that several great life lessons can be accidentally taught because the kids are soaking everything in.  

The high yesterday was near 100 with very high humidity and very little wind that morning.  I insisted that Kenyon wear shorts for comfort.  He insisted he wear boots for working.  We are working together to learn the art of compromise. 




Kenyon instantly noticed the white truck.  
"Hey, Mom, look at those stacks!"


I love these four little kiddos.  I have a feeling they will be thick as thieves for quite a while.  It is fun to hear their conversations about cows and pigs and all things dirt related, as it is all any of them know. 


My heart nearly bursts every time I look at this photo.  Every morning and night my husband will sit at the table and finish up some paperwork.  He makes out a list of tasks for the next day, a feed route, bills to pay or something similar.  I didn't realize how much Kenyon noticed that.  He stopped in the middle of his lunch the other day and crawled into his dad's chair.  "Mom, I'm gonna help out my dad and do some paperwork for him."  I still have that paperwork and probably always will. 




Of all the toys in the world, they love to run back and forth on the hay trailer. 



The longest ten minutes of any kiddo's life are those agonizing moments when you can see the tractor and baler on the other side of the field and you have to wait for the ride to come to you.