Life in the Country

Taking one day at a time with kids, cattle, and farming!

They're Home.... Finally

on Sunday, July 27, 2008

A 4H Mom sent these pics to me of Brooke showing at the Mercer County Fair. These were taken during the Junior Show in which she placed 3rd in the lightweight class.

Brooke and Blake are finally home after a very busy week. Blake went down to Kahoka, Missouri with Grandma and Grandpa and cousins Sam and Josh yesterday for a Family Picnic. Brooke swam at a friend's house and then had 2 friends spend the night last night. So I shipped the friends off early this morning so the kids could get settled back into home. They had a lot of cleaning to do - their toy room was a disaster! If they can work together and get along, they do a really good job of picking up.

I am excited to go to my friend Mindy's house today. She has been working on a little project for me - a tribute to my Dad. She is an avid scrapbooker and always creates the cutest layouts and homemade cards. She sent me a card after he passed away and I asked her to recreate it a little larger so I could put it in a 5x7 frame. Well, she has it done and I can't wait to pick it up today! She also has 3 year old triplets, and Brooke and Blake have been wanting to go play with them.

Chase is having a cookout tonight so we are off to that at 5:00. He and his roommate just got a new smoker and they are going to smoke some pork loin, chicken, and ribs. The rest of us will provide the rest! We always have a good time when we all get together. We'll leave with our bellies full, that's for sure!

Things aren't winding down any time too soon around here. We leave Wed. night to set up for the Knox County Fair in Knoxville. Then we have weigh-in on Thursday, and the kids show on Friday and Saturday. The steers come home on Sunday. Another busy week! I'll try to keep everyone posted!

By the way...

on Thursday, July 24, 2008

How much do you love this song "I'm Yours" by Jason Mraz?? How awesome is it? I could just eat it up!

Quiet Chaos

Boy it sure has been quiet around here this week. Brooke and Blake have been here and there and everywhere and I've not seen Blake much at all. Let's see.... Brooke spent the night with Rachel Sunday night and I didn't get her until late Monday afternoon. On Monday, Blake and I went to Jordan's 4H Steer Show.... he didn't come home with me, he stayed with Grandma Wanda and went to her house to play with cousin Josh. Brooke and I had a quiet night at home on Monday, we were laying in bed watching our favorite show of all times "House Hunters" when Jeff came home from his parents' house with..... yep, Blake. He decided he didn't want to spend the night at Grandma's so here he climbed into my bed. He proceeded to change the channel (Like always!) to Nickelodeon. Boy nothing pisses Brooke off more than someone changing the channel in the middle of her show. She might, I said MIGHT, get that from her mother. On Tuesday, Cathi and Rachel came up for the afternoon. The kids swam and then Rachel decided to spend the night. Wednesday morning, Blake took off for Grandma's house again to have more play time with cousins Josh and Sam! Then Brooke and Rachel were invited to a friend's house to play for the day. Wow, a whole afternoon to myself. That "alone time" always results in "expensive time". I went and did a little shopping in Galesburg and got the best pedicure I've ever had. Brooke returned at supper time, along with Rachel, and then Rachel spent the night again because Blake did decide to spend the night at Grandma's with his cousins! Now, it's Thursday.... as I type, Blake is at a demo derby with Luke and Brooke is down the road at a friend's house spending the night there! See, I told you. It's been a busy week and I've barely been able to keep track of my own kids!!!!!!!! And to think that tomorrow night they are spending the night at Grandma and Grandpa's so Jeff and I can go out to eat and go to an anniversary party!

It was funny this morning when Brooke saw Wanda pull in to drop off Blake. Her exact words were "This is the worse day of my life - Blake's home, Mom!" They really enjoy not being around each other. I sure hope that gets better!

If you are tired after reading about this week's exciting events, think about how tired I am!!!
Oh, I want to give a quick shout-out to Grandpa Ray!!! He lives in the state of Washington, and has told me that he keeps up on my blog! Love and miss you, Grandpa Ray!

Pics from Disney World

on Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Okay, so I'm a day late and a dollar short.... the story of my life. I didn't ever put any pictures up from our trip to Disney World in June and I really wanted to. I always promise to post pictures and I never do. So, needless to say, here's a bit of catching up!

Back from the Lake!

We headed down to the Ozarks last weekend for a short little trip. We left Thursday afternoon and returned Sunday afternoon. We had a good time. Our friends Joel & Jenn Johnson and our permanent boat pilot Chase (nephew) went with us. It was very warm, but boating was great! We spent a lot of time in the coves just swimming around. Last summer was the first time that Brooke and Blake actually got in the lake (we usually stick to the clean pool!), but the loved it and now that's all they want to do! We boated down to Ha Ha Tonka State Park (about an hour boat ride) and anchored into a cove. There is a natural spring that feeds the lake there. The water is 52 degrees - brrrrr! You can climb up some rocks and jump into that spring, then it shoots you out into the water where it is much warmer! The guys also went go-karting and about got kicked off of the track for tormenting everyone around them! Brooke and Jenn did go one round, but that was enough for them after they both suffered whiplash from getting hit so hard! Jenn even lost her shoes and they both are all bruised up! The guys take it waaayyyy too seriously and are entirely too rough - and competitive!!!! Jenn, Brooke, and I did get to go to the outlet mall for an hour or so! Bad for us, but good for our wallets! We are headed back down on August 7 with my whole family so that will be fun, too. We love it down there and can't wait to go back!

Mercer County Fair Results

on Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Wednesday's 4-H Show
*Brooke - 5th and 6th places with both steers (Blue Ribbons)

Thursday's Junior Show
*Brooke - 3rd out of 11 steers in her class - WOW! Super job for her first week of showing, plus not investing a lot into a show steer like other people do!

Friday's Open Show
*Brooke - 4th out of 9
*Blake - 4th out of 11
Again, WOW! Blake acted like he'd been showing for years. We got a lot of compliments about how well they did during their first showing at the fair! We are soooo proud of them!

Again.... more pics later.

Back from a short break.....

on Monday, July 14, 2008

Life around here has been way too busy. It scares me to think that in a month we'll be going back to school. We have been busier this summer than any summer before - some things by our own choice, some definitely not by choice. I'll try to recap some of the important events!

1. Softball is over. Both Brooke and Blake's teams got 2nd in the tournament. Brooke wasn't able to play in her last game due to her 4H Steer Auction, but Blake did get to go to his game. They were both happy that they got 2nd place. They liked their trophies.

2. Brooke is doing well with her braces. She doesn't complain too much about them. Tonight, though, she did realize that there will not be any MilkDuds on Halloween. Kind of bummed her out!

3. Blake is growing like a weed. He has been sleeping a lot more lately and eating a lot more, too. Those are definite signs of him growing. I think he's about 2 inches taller than he was at the start of summer. Speaking of getting taller, Brooke is darn near looking me eye to eye!

4. Mercer County Fair was last week. We survived our first fair week. We got up well before 6:00 a.m. every day and left the house by 6:30 a.m. Stayed the WHOLE day at the fair with the steers. Lots of showing, washing, blowing, and grooming. More sweating than I ever imagined, and I HATE to sweat. Everyone is still tired!

5. Off to the Ozarks this week. Leaving Thursday night and coming back Sunday. Just a quick trip, but we love going down there. Planning another short trip in August.

6. We've been busily cleaning out Mom and Dad's house. What a job. All of us have spent a lot of time together going through things. We have found things we didn't even know we had. Mom was an avid pig collector, and we've found boxes upon boxes of pigs that we packed away - some of them were packed without her knowing! Shame on us, but come on, how many pigs can one house display?!! We've found old pictures, books, letters, drawings - you name it, we've found it! I never thought we would be cleaning out their house this soon, but we are glad that Kevin and Kathy are moving out to the house. It's still so hard to believe that both Mom and Dad are gone. I honestly don't think that it has hit me yet. I'm afraid of what will happen when it does.

These are just a few of the things that have been keeping us busy. I've had problems uploading pictures, but I will give it another shot in the morning and see if I can get them to work. I have several that I need to post on here. Until next time....

First Steer Show

on Wednesday, July 2, 2008

We survived our first show. Next week is the Mercer County Fair so it will be very busy for all of us. Lots of washing, blowing, grooming, and leading around! Maybe it won't be a lot of work for "us", maybe just me!!! We are looking forward to it though, the kids have worked hard since January getting ready for it! The kids will be in the show ring for the first time by themselves! Yikes! Boy will I be nervous!

All Grown Up!

Brooke has officially had her braces for 1 week! She looks so much more grown up with them on. Gosh, I think sometimes she even "acts" more grown up. She has been really good about eating only what she can - she is really upset that she can't have a Snickers or Butterfinger while she has them on! She also takes really good care of her teeth. Every time she goes back to the orthodontist, she gets a Braces Report Card for how well she takes care of her teeth and braces. If she gets an A, her name goes into a drawing for really cool prizes like movie passes and a $50 gift card to the mall. I just can't believe that she's old enough to have braces! Makes me feel old!