Thursday, December 11, 2008

Signs and ornaments

This sign is for Katie's room.....

This one is for my youngest, Korey's room....

I painted the sides of Korey's to resemble a bandana.

These are the ornaments that I made for the kiddo's teachers.

You can't really see the detail on the poinsettia one, but it turned out really cute. These were my first "crafty" project attempts....I had fun, but I have TONS to learn. Oh, well....I'll probably never take time to do anything like this again anyway ;) Hopefully everyone keeps in mind that "it's the thought that counts" :)

Do we have school tomorrow?!

Why is it that "Do we have school tomorrow?" is always the very first thing to come out of a Texas born child's mouth when there's one snowflake on the ground?! :) Yesterday it started "snowing" around the time that school got out....and continued lightly falling until around 10 last night. The kiddos had a really good time playing outside while I cooked supper....My dog, on the other hand, was totally ticked at me for calling her out of her doghouse to get a pic of her in the snow....That's her "disgusted with my master" look....She's quite good at it, don't ya think?

Saturday, December 6, 2008

I hate cold weather....

I really do hate the cold....I always have. I mean, it's great when you can sit outside around a campfire roasting marshmallows....or when you can relax in front of a roaring fire in the fireplace reading a book....but HONESTLY, who has time for that?! I got out this morning in the freezing cold to hook up the hay fork on the tractor because there's a gentleman coming today to pick up a few loads of hay. Then I checked all of the cows and fed. After being outside in this 25 degree weather, I came home to cook breakfast and dream about selling out and moving to the tropics.

I guess one good thing to come out of this is that I am actually taking the time to work on all of the Christmas projects that I wanted to get done. I've made a few ornaments already. I've finished putting all of the pictures in my brother's photo album, and now I just have to decorate the front of it. I've got a sign for Korey started....It's my first one, so I'm a little worried about how that's going to turn out. I'll post pics of the final projects...even if they suck ;) Maybe folks can learn from my mistakes! :)

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Getting Crafty :)

Well, today I've been inside pretty much all day....which is CRAZY for me. I went out this morning and checked on all of the springers. Everyone was new babies today. The wind was HORRIBLE...and for someone wearing contacts, windy conditions make it horrible to be outside. If your eyes aren't drying out, then you're getting sand under your lenses which means PAIN...So, I decided to come in and work on some Christmas ideas that I've been thinking about. I'm really excited about the photo album that I'm making for my brother and his family. Our parents divorced and somehow I ended up with all of the "family" photos, so I've spent all day today scanning and printing pictures from our childhood and creating an album for him. I can't wait to see the look on my 3 year old niece's face when she sees pics of Daddy when he was little! :) I'm going to the closest "big city" to us tomorrow to make a craft run. I'm making handmade ornaments for the kiddo's teachers along with baked goods for their Christmas presents. I also have a few ideas for signs that I need to get supplies for. While I enjoy making things, I REALLY hate being stuck inside....It's just not really my thing....but I guess on the bright side, it's cold outside and I hate cold weather, so it makes being warm and inside a little more inviting ;)

Friday, November 28, 2008

Holy cow!!!!

Yesterday I cooked my FIRST EVER Thanksgiving meal all by myself....My Dad and his family came over, and I thought that I was going to be SOOOOOOO prepared. I mean, after all, I had a list! Oh, yes...a list. A pretty little list with times that everything needed to be started, pulled out of the oven, uncovered, etc.....I was going to be SO organized that everything flowed perfectly. There were going to be no "Thanksgiving emergencies" for me. I had this whipped.....Until it got time to start cooking! :) All of the sudden, everything went crazy. My pretty little list ended up with scribbles all over it....and a few tears. I went from calm and prepared in my cute little apron to a limping (I dropped a can on my big toe), scurrying idiot in a matter of seconds. (Which my Mom assures me is normal.)....I think she's just trying to make me feel better! Not only did I drop a can on my toe, but I also burned the back of my wrist on the oven.....

BUT......It turned out really good! :) All of the craziness, bruises and blisters were completely worth it! Hope that everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving!!!!

Thursday, November 13, 2008


Life has been crazy around here lately.....We started calving on Oct. 28th. This is my favorite time of the year (definitely NOT because of the weather) because of the babies...I can't wait to check cows every morning to see if we're going to have anyone calve that day. I love the every aspect of it....I love the newborns, of course. I mean is there anything cuter?! I love watching the mamas be so protective and watching nature take it's course. I love watching the babies play on an early cool morning when they are feeling really good. They buck and kick and aggravate each other (and their mamas). It's been a nice break from all of the rest of the craziness that's been going on lately. We've had some problems on the bus that happened to Kyle that I've had to go to the school over....MAJOR problems that I'm still really pissed about, but I'm giving the school first chance, and I could possibly even have to get the law involved :( Katie's been working on her science fair project, but we turned that in this morning :) I hope that she does well....She has worked her BUTT off on that project. Korey has been to the doctor because of a stomach issue and he's been on medicine the past week and a half...If the meds don't clear it up, we may have to go to a GI specialist :( Not to mention that my "extended" family situation is not the best right now, so I'm wondering how the holidays are going to be.....When it rains, it pours, I suppose....."That which doesn't kill us makes us stronger", right?!?! Surely there's a light at the end of the tunnel soon. If I don't post after this, you'll know that everything got the best of me ;)

Monday, October 27, 2008

THE best thing EVER!!!! :)

My grandmother's banana pudding....

So good!!!!

My grandmother made the BEST homemade banana pudding EVER!!! When we were kids and we went to their house on Sundays after church, it was everyone's favorite....SO rich!!! My mom wanted to know how she made it, so she asked for the recipe but there was one problem. My grandmother didn't measure anything....It was just a pinch of this and a dab of that....So my mom had to watch her make it and guess on measurements. My grandmother has since passed away, and now I'm "heir" to the banana pudding recipe. It is seriously SO good. I entered it into a contest once and won.....After I got my "prize" and my picture taken, I had a gentleman approach me that had helped judge. He wanted the recipe. I told him that it was a family secret...Sorry.....Then he offered me MONEY!!! (I still turned him down.) I will pass it on to my daughter....It's tradition.
This particular banana pudding above is earmarked for a gentleman that works with my husband. I send them to work with Terry every so often, and I guess it's been a big hit. They are working together this week, and Terry came home two days ago and said, "He'll buy everything you need if you'll just make it for him." I had everything but Nilla wafers, so he contributed those. :) Hope he enjoys it!

This weekend's pics

Kyle and Katie went to a roping school this weekend put on by the church. They had a blast. They learned alot of good tips and listened better to the instructors than they do to me....After all, I'm just "Mom"...what do I know, right?! ;) Everyone seemed to think that the kiddos had been bitten by the "roping bug"....Lord, I hope not!!! That's an expensive hobby! :)

This is Kyle headed down the arena after the calf. I don't have a pic of Katie on horseback....I had to run to the house to starch Terry's clothes and make his breakfast and lunch, and I pulled back in right after she had gotten off her horse :( But one of my buddies got a pic for me, so I'll post it as soon as she sends it.
Kyle doing some ground work....

Katie trying it out....
I love that they learned alot, and I really love that they were around super people while doing it!!!! The people's home and arena that we were at are two of the sweetest, most genuine people that I have ever met. It's nice to find that when you move somewhere.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Roping schools and Craft shows

The kiddos went to a roping school today....Hopefully they listened better there than they do when I'm trying to teach them....Korey couldn't go because he was with his Dad, but Kyle and Katie seemed to enjoy it. They came home completely tuckered out....when you're not used to it, swinging a loop for 4 hours will kick your butt! :) Hopefully they will be able to raise their arm in the morning....They go back tomorrow afternoon after church....I'm going to stay and take pictures tomorrow. I wanted them to get at least one day down without their Mom embarrassing them! ;)

While they were there I went to a craft show looking for ideas for Christmas. I really want to do handmade gifts this year.....partly because of the way that the economy is and partly because I've really been trying to "get back to the basics" here lately, and I would really like to be more self-sufficient in everything. I have the crafty Mom is amazing with anything that she attempts....hopefully I have a little of the same! ;) We'll see soon. I'll post pics when it gets closer to Christmas of my creations!

Thursday, October 23, 2008

I started with good intentions....

Ever have one of those days where you really start out with great intentions, but then they get lost somewhere in the course of the day? Today was one of those days for me....I woke up bright & early (as usual for a Mom of 3, right?), and after I got the kiddos off to school, I went and checked the cows...Everyone was present and accounted for, and no one calved last night. Then I checked the oil, etc. in the tractor, and checked one of the gear boxes on the shredder that is leaking a little bit....Then decided that I'd go get groceries and then start shredding.....THERE was my mistake! I knew better....I drive to the closest Sam's to grocery shop because it's cheaper in bulk. After shopping for groceries, driving home and unloading them, it was noon.....So, I decided that I should go ahead and get my husband's "lunch" started (he's working nights this week), so I put on a pot of chili.....Then I thought about a bread recipe that I've been wanting to make....and some desserts that I wanted to make....So I ended up spending all afternoon in the kitchen either baking or looking up recipes. I was productive because between mixing, etc. I was washing clothes or picking up the house, but it's still not what I wanted to do today, so I'm disappointed. However, since I've gotten the house cleaned up and all of my baking done, tomorrow I can stay on the shredder all day.....I'm definitely looking forward to it.

Monday, October 20, 2008

One man's trash....

is another man's treasure! I've heard that all of my life...
and now we've expierenced it! The Servis Flex 15 below was my
grandfather's. It's been used (but not kept up) by people
in the family since his death. We went and picked
it up yesterday with my Mom's blessing. (Thanks, MOM!!!!)

Yesterday after we brought it home...It was parked in a pasture with weeds all around it...

The deck has rusted through in spots...

Last "before" pic...

Today after spending about $60 bucks and a whole day's worth of labor, my sweetheart of a hubby is SHREDDING with Pop's shredder!!!!

He shredded until nearly dark, and everything's fine!!!! We still have some work to do on it...having a bit of a problem finding parts....but we'll get there!!!! I'm so proud!!!!!

Hopefully I'm a hero.....

Friday night we were all sitting around watching TV, and we had all the windows open because it was such a nice night....All of the sudden, the kids and I started hearing a really high pitched squeal. We couldn't figure out where it was coming from, so we muted the TV, and I asked my husband if he knew what it was....I was not prepared for his answer....He said, "Yeah, that's a rabbit."......And obviously I had a blonde moment because I said, "Why would it be squealing like that?"......To which he replied, "Because it's getting eaten." :O I nearly knocked over all three kiddos while I ran to the back door with my flashlight. I threw on my boots with my pjs (very cute, by the way) and ran outside.....I rounded the corner of the house and thought "Man, it's dark out here...I can't see anything."....Just as that thought ran through my mind, I collided with something and pain started shooting from my knee cap!!! I TOTALLY forgot that I had brought our generator up here for my husband to work on, and when I rounded the corner of the house, I ran straight into then damn thing. Now, thank goodness that it was my so called "good" knee....but still it hurt like hell. Since the adrenaline was still flowing, I side-stepped the generator and continued running to the front yard.....There I found our cat trying to kill a baby rabbit!!!! I ran and scooped the cat up, being careful not to touch the baby rabbit. I put the cat in a chicken coop that we have behind our shop and Terry said that he saw the baby bunny hop back out into the pasture. I sure hope that he made it...He was really young, probably still nursing. Hopefully since he could hop out of the yard, he made it back to his hole and is okay.....However, by then, my knee was KILLING me....That night I couldn't hardly bend my knee and I didn't sleep worth a hoot, but the next morning, it felt 10 times better. Today it's still sore if you touch it, and I have a bruise the size of a baseball on my knee, but other than that, it's fine....Gotta love life in the country! :)

Sunday, October 12, 2008


Kyle decided to play football this year....I can't say that I was the typical worrying mother, I was a little scared. So far he's really enjoyed it. Thursday night before the game he hurt his hand, so we might be out for the rest of the season....He "accidentally" hit a concrete wall....Quite a lesson in anger management.....I could've killed him. The coaches think it's broken and he's going for x-rays on Tuesday. I'll keep you posted. In the meantime, here's a few pics....

Kyle (#33) and Ryan

Running through the sign

Getting ready....Bless his heart...He knows how horrible my eyesight is....even WITH contacts, so he got the idea to put orange Nike bands under his knees so that I can easily pick him out! :)

I've really enjoyed watching him play...I do still worry, but I think that I'll be alot better about it next year. I've got the whole "spirit" thing down from all my years of cheering ;) It's just the worrying that I have to work on. :)

Thursday, October 9, 2008

A few pics...

It was pointed out to me in a comment the other day that I needed pics of the cattle....Here are a few I snapped yesterday morning while checking cows.
This is in Pasture 7. Right now we have our dry cattle in here getting ready for winter.

This is Pasture 7 also, but notice the weeds....It's down in a little draw that was too wet for me to spray when I was spraying for weeds...Amazing the difference spraying makes.

Rio in a shot of sprayed pasture facing the pens.

The bulls in the front pasture before a storm.

Our newest addition....a 1976 John Deere 4430 with a loader. We needed a bigger tractor, but didn't want the expense of a brand new one....This one was an awesome find....not too many hours, everything works (even the AC and heater!!!!!!)...and it's got 125 HP PTO....I'm so excited!!!!!

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

One of those mornings....

Ever have one of those mornings where everything that you do is completely wrong and utterly stupid to your 13 year old? I am at my wit's end....I'm so torn between wanting to wring his neck and worrying about him that I don't know which way is up anymore....I know that all 13 year olds are hard to live with, and honestly at times he is really trying to improve, etc....but mornings like these have me wanting to run away. :( One minute (according to him), he's getting picked on for being short, getting pushed around, not wanting to go to school....But then, we go to school functions and EVERYONE is speaking to him....I never see kids shy away from him, I never see him not being included, etc. Then the next day (according to him), everything is great...Life couldn't be better. I honestly don't know what to think. We just moved here two years ago, and he is short for his age, but he's a really good looking kid. He's smart, he's playing football, running cross country...He's involved in FFA, etc. I just don't know....when do you step in? Is he really unhappy, or is it just a bad "raging hormone" day? Did he just have a bad morning? I'm sorry for this being a bitching post, but I had to get this out somehow....It's hubby's first day back at work on his 7 on, so I'm here trying to figure this out myself.....I thought that maybe if I got some of this out of my system, maybe the rest of my day wouldn't be as bad as I feel right now....

Sunday, October 5, 2008

You can see the lake!!!!!

I have to start by saying that I am SOOOOOO proud of my husband!!!! I am truly the luckiest woman in the world. When my Mom allowed us to move onto this place, it meant the world to me (and still does, Mom)....but honestly, one of the greatest things about it has been to see how much my husband loves this place. For those of you that don't know, he works in the oil industry. So that means 7 on, 7 off and rotating days and nights. After he's worked his 7 on, he spends his 7 off working his butt off on the place....I'm lucky to get him to take an afternoon off here and there....He's just amazing. Anyway, his latest project has been the Canyon Lake pasture. It was a MAJOR start with, you couldn't even get in the gate! There was a tickle-tongue tree grown through the only hanging gate on the place...that just happened to lead in to the Canyon Lake pasture....and we're not talking a little tree here...It was about the size of a softball at the base...It had been there a while. Once he got that cut down, he went inside the pasture....and couldn't find the lake. Seriously, he didn't know which corner of the pasture it was in, and you couldn't see it at all. I think he thought that I had told him the wrong pasture ;) Anyway, he came back up and got the tractor and shredder and started picking spots and clearing them and now..........YOU CAN SEE THE LAKE!!!!!

BEFORE.....we had already shredded some....This is the view from the gate that he cut the tree out of. It's like this throughout the pasture....Completely covered in vines, small trees....and underbrush.....and these pics don't do it justice...It's THICK!!!!

AFTER!!!!! This is nearly the exact spot that I was standing in for the BEFORE pic above.....AMAZING!!!!!

This isn't technically a "before" pic because he had already cleared here, but there's still a few button willows at the edge, etc. that he hadn't gotten yet....

This is NOW!!!!

Terry creating one of the MANY brush piles that we have down there now.....
My mom and step-father are coming out today to eat steaks and get a "tour" of the place......I'm so excited. My mom hasn't really been out in the pastures with us since we moved out here, and I'm hoping that she is just as proud as I am...if not more so. :)

Monday, September 15, 2008

Hurricane Ike :(

WOW.....That's all I can say about "Ike"......It was really something to experience....I can't imagine being any closer to him than we were....The people and the damage in Galveston, Houston, etc....I just can't imagine! Below are pics of the damage that we had....I know it's not much compared to others, but it's BIG around here....We were without power for a full day, and my parents and brother are still without, and someone heard that it could be a couple of weeks before they get power again....CRAZY!!!!
I saw this tree from our bedroom window, and the whole time I walked out to it, I was thinking, "Please be laying BY the truck....BY the truck..."

No such luck....It landed ON Terry's truck. It dented the front fender, cracked the windshield, dented the hood, ripped the back fender off, and really dented the bed.....AND the only other tree that we had fall was in the backyard.....and guess what?!

Korey's go-cart is under this tree....Nice, huh? 2 trees fall on the place....both in the yard, and one gets the truck, the other gets the go-cart....NICE.....

I really thought that I had Korey's go-cart in a good place.....This tree that fell was massive.....I never thought that it would fall.

BTW, this is our pool now :)

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

An overgrown hay trap.....

This was an old hay patch that was on the place when we moved in. It's to the west of the house, and it was SO thick you couldn't get in there. My sweetheart of a husband decided to clear it, and now it looks amazing. The gate above got destroyed in the process (Oops!), but the post it's hanging from is a good reference point in the after photos.

This is the house side of the hay patch...before.

This is an after photo....the gate post is still there, but the dead tree took out the gate when it fell.

This is the house side of the hay patch....after. It's so nice pulling up and seeing this instead of a thicket full of trees.....It was crazy how thick it was in there....Terry did some of this with the tractor and shredder, but most of it, he had to chainsaw his way in and then push brush.

We're really starting to get excited now because now we're a few projects into the place, and you can start seeing the difference that we've made already. We had a gentleman contact us the other day about cutting the front of our place for hay...I know that doesn't sound like much, but if you could have seen this place when we first moved on here, you would be IMPRESSED!!!! When we brought my Dad's Kawasaki Mule over here to ride the place, there were goat weeds and ragweed taller than the Mule. It was CRAZY....and now someone wants to cut it! I am so proud of my husband and I, and so thankful that we have this opportunity! (THANK YOU, MOMMA!!!! 50 x 500!)

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Homemade biscuits and history lessons

This morning I decided to do something that I've always wanted to do....So I made biscuits! I've made homemade dumplings before, I've made bread and rolls, but never biscuits. I wasn't sure how the kiddos would react, but they LOVED them!

Obviously I wasn't prepared (I didn't have a "biscuit cutter"), but the kids thought that these were even more special! :) They were a big hit, and not hard to make at all....Something about living here is making me really want to be as self-sufficient as we can be. I want a garden, I want to make bread, butcher our own meat instead of going to the grocery store....I want my kids to learn these things. I've just really gotten into a "preserve and honor your history" frame of mind. I'm starting a journal...a hand-written journal of daily events, weather, etc. for our place. My Pops kept one, and I'm going to try to get it and make copies. I want a written history of this place so that my children and grandchildren can remember....I love this place so much, and my dear sweet husband is falling head over heels for it, too! He enjoys it so much. I love seeing him happy...I love seeing my kids fishing and climbing canyons on a place that my Grandfather and Grandmother worked for. I love knowing that my Mom grew up coming here. I love knowing that I thought this was (and still is) the most beautiful place I could ever dream of living on. I want them to know how much hard work and love went into this place, and I want their children and their children's children to know too.....

Canyon Lake progress

This is from the south side of the pasture looking north.
From the gate looking southwest...Korey is SO excited now that he can ride his go-cart down there!!!!

Terry clearing the hillside toward Pasture 2.

I just had to include this one...Terry had told me about this tree, but I didn't realize the size of it until I saw it for myself. An ambitious beaver tried to take this one down. We put Terry's Copenhagen there just to give you something to size it against. The little guy must have had high hopes for this tree...but just couldn't get it....Looks like he sawed on it for a while before abandoning it.

Monday, August 18, 2008

Canyon Lake pasture

View from gate to the Canyon Lake pasture-before

Terry on the tractor and shredder


The kids in a cleared spot....You can see the lake now!!!


My wonderful hubby started something for me today....I've been telling him how gorgeous our Canyon Lake pasture used to be, and he started clearing it!!! There's alot of canyons on this place, and a long time ago, my Pops and the neighbor that joins us to the left decided to call in the Army Corps of Engineers to see what could be done about the one that joined their pastures. The Corps of Engineers came and put a dam & spillway at one end and then sloped the hillside so that water from the surrounding hills would feed in. The spillway leads to another canyon at the back of our place. When I was little, I thought it was the prettiest place on the property. It's at the bottom of a really big hill....It's just indescribable what it used to look like. Since then, things have grown up...All of the fence rows are grown up, and trees have absolutely taken over down there. You can't even see the lake from the hill anymore. Enough of's my wonderful husband's progress so far....Keep in mind that he's clearing this with a tractor and shredder, so it takes a while. I will post updated pics as they come.