Wednesday, July 30, 2008


Yesterday, LawDog put up a post about fountain pens, praising them highly.

I've never used a fountain pen in my life. The Farm Family always seems to have a few old ones floating around, but well, they're old, and dry. And ink for fountain pens is thin on the ground, locally. It's easy to find super non-fade ultimate indelible ink for marking cattle ear tags, but fountain pen ink? Not so much.

I do, however, seem to have a bit of a thing for pens. I like different pens, ultra fine point, fine, medium, colors and weird barrels and different inks... I've got nine different kinds of pens in the cup on my desk right now, and seventeen individual pens. I buy packs of pens whenever possible, because, well, I lose them. Or the gremlins take them, that seems to happen, too.

That's another reason that I don't own a fountain pen. I don't want to lose the danged expensive thing.

I've got Bic ultra fine point pens, because I needed the red one for revisions. I'm not normally a fan of ultra fine points because many of them have ink flow problems, but the packaging touted the smooth ink flow of these, and well, I needed something that I could use to make small notations in between double spaced type. My medium point pen was just too chunky, I was writing all the way across the page to fit it all in.

I've got Papermate medium point pens, because when I'm taking notes in class, I want that bold writing, it's easy to read at a glance.

I've got a funky pen that's covered in a squishy outside, that, now that I look at it, is another Papermate. I bought six of those one time when they were on clearance for some ridiculously low price, in varying off-beat colors, and I'm down to one, the pink one.

I've got el-cheapo Papermate plain old twenty-to-a-pack pens. You know, the plain plastic barrel, at least three in the pack won't write at all right off the bat, but you buy them anyway because they're cheap kind.

I've got gimme pens from a couple of different places. Gimme pens tend to break before they run out of ink, but they're free, and some of them write really well.

I've got Uniball Signo pens, which I bought yesterday to restock the backpack pen supply, because they were on sale. I've written with them a little, and they seem to be really nice.

Really, I've got a... thing.... for pens, I guess. I want to try them all, and the ones that I really like are usually the ones that I wind up losing because I cart them everywhere with me, tucked into the spiral rings of various small notebooks, clutched in my sweaty paws, tucked into the console in my car (which eats everything that's in there at least once a week, it seems like,) hung on the collar of my shirt or tucked behind my ear. I've even been known to shove a pen through the hair behind my pony-tail holder, so that I know where it is.

Whenever I'm at a store, and I've forgotten something on the list of things that I need to get (except for grocery runs,) I usually think to myself "well, it was probably pens."

So I buy a couple of pens, and I bring them home, and I take them out of the package, and I stuff them into the over-filled pen-cup.

And now that I know about the low-cost disposable fountain pens, I'm probably going to come up with a couple of them, too.


I wonder if they have Penaholics Anonymous meetings?

Monday, July 28, 2008


In dryers all over the world there is a sub-species of the same creature that gnaws through important automotive belts, drains all the oil in a vehicle, and generally clabbers up any mechanical device.

It is.... the Sock Gremlin.

It's native habitat is unknown for sure, as no one has ever actually seen a sock gremlin, let alone followed one home. Theories vary from alternate dimensions, to mouse holes in laundry room walls, to dryer motors. Personally, I think they live in a symbiotic relationship with the boogey bears that our dogs chase and bark at, in between chasing and barking at the birds.

Anyway, these gremlins are notorious for stealing one sock of a pair, and leaving the poor laundry doer scratching their heads over a pile of "strays." Occasionally they have been known to deposit one mismatched sock, usually in a color and/or pattern that you know you don't own. Whether this is their idea of trade, or just an amusing joke for them, I don't know.

Why am I telling my fabulous readers all of this, when they're sure to have encountered the sock gremlins before? Well, I've discovered a new kind of gremlin, closely related to the sock gremlin.

The Lesser North American Underwear Gremlin. Maybe some of you have run across this particular type before, but I haven't.

I've named it the Lesser North American Underwear Gremlin, because it only seems to be interested in little boys' underwear. Particularly, Middle and Youngest Child's.

When CM moved in to his apartment, he somehow lost all but three pairs of their underwear, so he bought a package of six. Assuming there weren't many accidents, and that CM did laundry once a week (not such a stretch) they should have been able to make do for a while.

Vanishing underwear was at first attributed to Youngest Child. He doesn't always wake up in the middle of the night when his bladder is full. When he'd gone a couple of weeks without a late night accident, CM let him wear his underwear to bed instead of a pull-up.

Of course, when he did have an accident after that, he was embarrassed. So he would hide the soiled underwear and put on a pull-up, when he awoke to the... er... oops.

A small talk with Youngest Child quickly solved that problem, assuring him that it's not the end of the world if he has an accident, but that he needed to put the dirty underwear in the dirty clothes and not hide them.

Most of the time since then, he's put on a pull-up on his own before bed, anyway.

And yet... there are five pairs of underwear for the boys in the house. We looked where Youngest was hiding them before... no dice. Under beds, under dressers, in closets, behind the toilet, in the couch cushions. No sign of the missing tighty-whiteys.

Farmmom chimed in that they might be going down the potty ("undies go down the hoooole!") but CM swears that their toilet doesn't have the juice to suck a pair of underwear down.

Thus... The Lesser North American Underwear Gremlin.

I wonder if they prefer plain white undies or the Spidey-man kind? Or if its more about the scent of dirt and sticky things that hovers around little boys everywhere?

I shall pursue the investigation into the habits and behaviors of the Lesser North American Underwear Gremlin... any other data on the subject is of course, more than welcome.

I wonder if I could catch one for further study... sticky traps maybe?

Ahh Domesticity

I'm feeling much better today, folks, so you can stop worrying. My glands are still a little swollen but the sore throat is going away and my energy is returning. Thanks for all the advice (which amounted to "go to the doc"... HA! We don't need no steenking doctor,) and warm wishes!

Last night CM asked me if I wanted pork chops for dinner tonight. I gave him a look and said "I'm making pot roast tomorrow."

"Oh, really?" He said skeptically.

See, I've been promising him a good old down home pot roast for a while. I had the roast, and had him pick up onion and carrots last week. Then I got sick. For two days the thought of food, making it or eating it, made me want to blow chunks. So no pot roast.

The third day, I was just wiped. I couldn't summon the energy to peel and quarter the potatoes. How sad is that??

Ever since the day I mentioned it last week, CM has been bugging me about the pot roast. When I was sick, the first day he left it alone. The second day, when I was complaining about nothing sounding good, he was throwing out ideas, and gave me this ingenious look and said "Pot roast?"

The third day (yesterday) he told me I wasn't allowed to die, because I still "owed" him a pot roast.

Today... I put the pot roast in the crock pot with the potatoes, carrots, and an onion, and some salt and pepper. It's smelling really good right now. I love my crock pot, have I mentioned that? Granted, I don't love it so much that I don't still want one like Farmmom and Mamaw have, but I still love it. I have two, actually, a big one and a little one.

Given his... disbelieving... attitude about it last night, I pretty much expected him to ask me about it by now. "Did you remember the roast?" He hasn't, yet, but I noticed when I got in his fridge this morning to get the veggies that he thawed the pork chops. Distrustful darling man. Either he thought I would forget, or he's skeptical about my pot roast.

Just because I don't cook very often, he starts to assume that I can't cook. Which makes me want to prove him wrong. Unfortunately most of the things that I enjoy cooking the most (and that I'm damn good at cooking) are fairly expensive, and everyone is on a strict budget. That, and I can't do things like my fantastic whole baked chicken, because none of them will eat chicken on the bone. Philistines. Maybe once I'm back in classes and get my financial aid disbursement I can splurge once or twice, make trash pizza, or fondue.

Given the size of his appetite, and the appetites of the children, I'm not sure that there's going to be any leftovers. I threw in extra veggies just in case, and I might do the frozen corn on the cob that's in the freezer as well. When in doubt, make more sides.

I'm contemplating making mashed potatoes and gravy, but more than one kind of potatoes are usually reserved for holiday dinners, in my family. It might be a bit much. But maybe devilled eggs? Hmmm...

Sunday, July 27, 2008


For the last two days I've been down and out with some kind of rampant illness.

It really started Thursday night, with what I thought was my body's usual reaction to the new month on das patch. For several months I'll get a little queasy in the first week, as my body adjusts to the hormone rush, no big deal, it goes away eventually, I can deal.

I also had a tiny bit of a sore throat, on one side. not too surprising this time of year, plants are starting to cure out and for some reason I'm mildly allergic to dying things. Unless it's a pine tree, and then I'm seriously miserable around it.

Woke up Friday morning and I felt like hammered crap... body aches, queasy stomach, sore throat, swollen glands... just a touch of a fever.

The last two days have sucked. I've been weak as a kitten and twice as useless (I haven't even been cute!)

I'm feeling better so far today... more alert, no fever, body aches seem to be more a case of being horizontal for most of the last couple of days than illness related now.... but my throat still hurts, and my glands are still swollen.

It sucks... I can handle sitting up for more than ten minutes now... but I can't yawn, talk very loud, or swallow anything without wanting to cry.

We'll see how it goes today, I'm going to putter a little bit but not get really exited about doing too much, see if things start easing up. If not, I guess I'll have to go to the doctor and see what the heck is wrong with me.

Can't really afford it, but if this doesn't start resolving on it's own soon, I'm not gonna have much choice.

Thursday, July 24, 2008


Well, it's a fantastical thing, stepping into a ready-made family. Suddenly I'm surrounded by laughing children every evening, filling up the house with the kind of energy and enthusiasm for life I can vaguely remember from my own childhood.

Suddenly, not only do I get to curl up on the couch with my honey and watch a movie in the evenings, but I get to lean in the doorway to the boys' room and watch him fold himself into the lower bunk to read them a story. I never realized what a tender feeling it brings, to watch children curl up next to their father and drift off as he reads to them.

Suddenly, I've got a beautiful, intelligent young lady who includes me when she's making "I Love You" pictures, who asks me to help her with her hair. And who often asks me, "why don't you just move in?"

Suddenly, I've got two little boys who, with the artlessness of youth, tell me "My dad needs to give you a trophy!" "No Bubba, if he gives her a trophy she won't be happy and then she won't come back. Daddy needs to give her a ring, and then they'll be married, and she'll be happy, and she'll stay!"

Suddenly I've got dinner around the table, reminding the youngest to chew with his mouth closed, Middle Child to eat his vegetables, and Eldest Child that bigger bites don't count for extra points.

Suddenly I've got new challenges. Middle Child still doesn't accept authority from women very well. We have battles, when he gets in trouble. Youngest Child follows his big brother's lead, except instead of screaming, he'll give you his big blue eyes and say "Aw wight," and then do it again five minutes later. Eldest Daughter, well, she mothers her brothers, instead of being a kid herself.

We're working on all of that, and being consistent and firm is helping the boys a lot. I have to remind Eldest Daughter to just play, a lot, but she's starting to figure it out, too.

Suddenly, I've got a day care schedule to work around. I'll be dropping them off every weekday morning at eight, and picking them up at five most evenings, starting Monday.

Suddenly........... Suddenly I've got a family. Three great kids and a wonderful man who thinks that I'm perfect. He's crazy, but he's sweet.

If you'd told me, a year ago (right around the time I started this blog, remember?) that I'd be here, now, I'd have said you were nuts. And, I'd have been terrified of the prospect. Three kids? Yikes.

But, suddenly, it's not so bad. Suddenly, I find myself doing all the things that my mother used to do for me. And suddenly, I find that I like it.

I might have days that I want to pull my hair out, and I might have days when I feel like there is no way I'm up to the challenges, but even on those days, I wouldn't give it up for the world.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Learning To Rope...

I am a farm and ranch girl. I've lived in a farming and ranching area all my life, and yet, I've never learned to rope.

I tried a couple of times, but I think the main problem is that my teacher was Farmdad, who admits freely, whenever it comes up, that he can't catch a cold with a rope.

Here I am, sitting in the middle of a lot of people who know how to rope, and I haven't taken advantage of it... how dumb am I?

Well, honestly, I was a bit busy with my horse, so I suppose I can be excused for not doing it yet... but I really should take advantage of the opportunity while I can.

Now, I just have to find someone to teach me, who doesn't mind that I'm starting from... well.... nothing.

Classes start August 18th. We'll see how things go.

Sunday, July 20, 2008

The Pitfalls of Spontaneity

So yesterday about two in the afternoon, CM looks at me and says "Hey honey, lets go fishing!"

Sounded good to me, so we started gathering things, and as we gathered the discussion turned into "Lets go camping!"

Now, normally, I'm a pretty good camper. I've got my personal camping routine down, I can load the car and be on my way in about an hour... if I'm at the old homestead.

Since I wasn't, it was a bit more challenging. Find tent, got sleeping bags, changes of clothes for the kids and the adults, food, stop by Wally World to renew the fishing licenses and oh we need buns and chips and worms and OH! S'mores ingredients!

Get out of Walmart after eighty bucks worth of "oh, yeah" and get headed to the lake.

We went to John Martin Resevoir... well technically we went to Hasty Lake which is on the other side of the dam from the resevoir. Let the kids swim for a while... oh crap, we forgot towels.

Back to the campsite for some supper, after buying firewood from the parks service at six bucks a bundle, then let the fire die and go fishing just at dusk. That was fun, we had Eldest Daughter's friend with us and she'd never fished in her life... she was the only one to land a fish, a nice sized crappie.

I had a honkin big fish, easily two feet long... and he broke my line right at the edge of the water. Bastard.

So we went back to camp and made s'mores and roasted hotdogs, the kids told scary stories ("Once upon a time, there was a big sized monster and an itty bitty baby living in a house. The monster ate the baby. Amen" - Youngest Child) and went to bed.

Whoops, forgot pillows. I used CM, he used my hoodie, and the Middle Child used my feet. Did I mention it was a little tent?

Well long about midnight Eldest Child's friend got to wanting to go home. This has become a pattern, and CM and I agree that it's pretty useless to invite her to stay over any more. She gets upset in the middle of the night and has to be taken home. Last night her mother had to drive for thirty minutes to come get her.

If Eldest Child somehow convinces CM to let that friend stay the night again, I'm dosing her food with sleeping pills.

Well, once her friend was gone, Eldest Child didn't want to sleep outside the tent alone. She tried the back seat of the car, and that didn't work for her. So, three kids and two adults wound up in a tent that, honestly, is only comfortable for two people.

And Eldest Child kicks in her sleep, as I learned the hard way. Right in the face.

So yeah, it was a long night.

Next time I'm home, I'm kyping our tent, and the rest of my camping gear. I'll find somewhere to stash them.

That way, I can put the air mattress in the big tent and be comfortable, and use the little tent for the children. Little ones tent, big people tent. That way I don't get booted in the face at four in the morning. (And react badly, leading to me nearly beating the crap out of CM because he was the one holding on to me....)

And next time we go camping, (and I love camping, so we will be going again) we'll be better prepared, because I'll just rework my emergency camping kit for four people instead of one. All we'll absolutely have to remember will be the food, and clothes.

Now, I have to go shower, and then take a looong nap.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Talk About A Hook...

I was at Wal-Mart today and in the treating myself mood. Give me a break, I'm menstrual, and I wanted a new pair of pajamas.

So, as I can rarely resist I took a swing through the book aisle, and they'd got a new shipment in. Perusing the covers for one that looked like a book I'd read (step 1 in the Farmgirl Buys A Book Guide to Literary Addiction) my eye caught on one that isn't really my usual style, a street scene with a dark motif.

The title was The Man with the Golden Torc, by Simon R. Green. I was just barely intrigued enough to pick it up and read the back.

The back copy was iffy.

They say, in writing, you have to have a kick ass first page. When submitting to agents, or publishing houses, you have to capture their attention in a few pages, or they'll just toss off a form rejection and call it a day. Every writing guide I've ever seen (that I was sure wasn't a joke) has instructed me to make my first page pop.

Simon R. Green has mastered this concept. I flipped the book open to take a peek at the writing to see if I wanted to give it a chance, and with just a skim down the first page of the first chapter, I knew I had to own this book.

On the first page an unnamed political figure ("Lets call him Mr. President, and no, not the one you're thinking of,") has contracted a supernatural venereal disease during a goodwill tour of Thailand, subsequently becoming pregnant with "something the very opposite of a love child."

If this is the first page, I can't wait to see the rest of the book.

On a related note, I now feel like my first page is a flop...

I'm off, to start reading the book. And yes, Farmmom, Farmdad, you can have it when I'm done with it...

Tuesday, July 15, 2008


Well, folks, it looks like I'm going to be spending my weekend nights driving in circles. Just got a txt message from my buddy asking me to be his pilot car driver on Saturday and Sunday nights.

I'm not real fond of nights, but it's a paycheck, and a good one. And, frankly, I'm gonna need that money. I need that money now, to be honest.

So, lets take a look at what it's gonna be.

Saturday. Up at six am for class at seven thirty at the barn, take care of the horse, get a little riding in maybe. Go home and sleep as much as I can. Go to work at six in the evening. Drive for twelve hours.

Sunday. Get off work at six am, go to the barn. Take care of the horse. Go home and sleep. Go to work at six pm.

Monday. Get off work at six am, catch a nap, class at the barn at ten. Get out of class at eleven thirty, catch a nap, go to Management at one, and Computerized Farm Records at two thirty. Collapse as soon as possible into a nice warm loving bed.

Tuesday-Friday. Classes all day. Start over on Saturday.

Something tells me I should scrape up the money to buy stock in energy drinks, and possibly No-Doze or caffeine pills.

Yeehaw, let the games begin.

Monday, July 14, 2008

Tennis, Anyone?

I got some interesting news while I was at the Old Homestead this weekend, about the local Sheriff and his goon squa... erm. Deputies.

Anyone who reads regularly knows that I am not anti law enforcement, far from it. I am, however, against the kind of ineptitude that has been displayed by the current Sheriff's department, mixed with a sadly mistaken over-all god complex.

I said that it would be a disaster when the King of the Idiots was elected, and I was right.

Let me put it this way, when I was a young Farmgirl, we had a city officer that had the entirely irreverent nickname of Cool Whip, because of his last name. Whether he refused to believe that he was not the coolest adult living, as far as we underagers were concerned, or he honestly thought it was a compliment, I don't know, but he took the nickname and ran with it.

To the extent of telling a group of fourteen year old girls, with a straight face, "They call me Cool Whip because I come in lots of flavors." Clueless to the point of being freaking creepy. Or just freaking creepy, take your pick, no one could ever agree on that point.

The King of the Idiots makes me miss the good ol' days with Cool Whip.

Well, there's been a steady increase in the "stupid kids" kind of theft and general mayhem in the county since the KOTI took over the helm. Pulling copper wiring out of grain trucks, abandoned houses, things like that. With the price of scrap metal these days everyone pretty much figured some youngsters with a future in numbers (on their pictures, on their shirts, on their sentences..) had figured out how to make some partying cash without actually getting a job.

When nothing happened to stop that kind of stuff, the county critters started getting restless. The last Sheriff had gotten them pretty much scared back into their holes, for the most part. No one wanted to tangle with him, and I can't blame them. I've known the man all my life and when he had his Sheriff face on he scared me. And he calls me "Button!"

Well, in more recent days, the critters have gotten entirely too bold. One little old lady left her house one morning, went to town, to the grocery store, and returned to her home thirty minutes later, to find it ransacked and missing several valuable and sentimental items.

One of the grain cooperatives had the door of it's offices ripped off, and the office denuded of anything that might be of value. They had to do business, so they replaced all the essentials and fixed the door the next day. That night, the door was again ripped off, and the replacement equipment stolen. I'm not talking about the door was kicked in, or the hinges were removed, or anything as mundane as that. Someone took a truck, attached it to the door, and then started driving. From what I hear the doorframe was pretty much missing.

So far, the Sheriff's department has solved precisely one of the multitude of these kinds of incidents, resulting in the return of approximately twenty five thousand dollars of tools, welders, and such.

Now, ask me how they solved that one.

I'm so glad you asked. The guilty parties stashed the goods at a buddy's house. Said buddy got into a fight with his woman. Said woman proceeded to rat the whole lot of them out, knowing where the items came from, where they were, and who did all the totin'.

The KOTI's method to catch the culprits for all the other thefts is to have his goon squa... er... Deputies... patrol the county roads, stopping every pickup they see, and looking in the back. If you have tools, or a welder, they ask you to prove your ownership of said items.

Not the brightest investigative plan I've ever heard, really. Frankly I think a blind, deaf monkey could run the department in a more efficient and friendly to the public manner, but then, I might be a little prejudiced against the KOTI because of my own personal history with him and his family. And the fact that he slung more mud than a monster truck rally in a monsoon during his campaign.

But I digress. In addition to this oh-so-brilliant investigative technique ("open your tool box" the officer tells Farmmom. "Kiss my butt, get a warrant," she replies) one of the goon squa... er... oh screw it. One of the goon squad has a "drug dog."

A black Lab. Not the best scent hound in the first place, and knowing the caliber of the "handler and trainer," I doubt the dog could find a pound of marijuana if you mixed it in his Alpo. Anyone who has ever been around a Lab knows that they're big, clumsy, happy-go-lucky lumps. I love the breed for a pet, but you couldn't pay me to try and train a Lab for police work. They just don't have the right kind of mindset for it, in my opinion.

Anyway, Numbah One Goon has this dog that he keeps in the truck with him and calls a drug dog, and every time he makes a stop, he takes the dog around the vehicle. Since Numbah One Goon is another of the "I have a badge, I am God!" types, he manages to annoy the crap out of people on a regular basis.

Me being a smartass, (who, me?) when Farmmom told me of the tactics that they're using all over the county, my first thought, and of course the first thing out of my mouth since my mental filter was on vacation that day was:

"Well hell just start carrying a tennis ball in the pickup."

I got confused looks, which is unusual, since I was sitting in a room full of the people who raised me and taught me to think the way I do. Usually at least Farmmom can hear the distant whistle of my freight train of thought, but this time she was blank.

"The next time Numbah One Goon stops you, as soon as he unloads the dog and starts up to the truck, just pitch the tennis ball out the window and watch the show."

After we cleaned up the puddles on the floor, the bag of a dozen tennis balls was duly dug out of the closet where it lives out of the sight of my pup. If she can see that we have more balls for fetch, she'll pop them right and left. If she can't, she takes care of her toys, but she still destroys them with enough regularity that we buy them by the dozen.

I think I might have created a monster, because when I left, Farmmom was trying to figure out who she was going to give tennis balls to, and who she was going to encourage to buy their own.

Friday, July 11, 2008


I promised, and here are a couple. You can see how Monkey is filling out, really fast now it seems like, even faster than when he was on the high powered alfalfa.

Without further ado...

You can see in that last one that Monkey is starting to get hot and tired. You can see the sweat running down his flanks in the second one... I had that too, but you can't see it... it was freakin hot!

Now, if ya'll will excuse me, I need to go strip naked and lay in front of the air conditioner.. it's freakin hot today, too!

Tuesday, July 8, 2008


To the finals of the Extreme Mustang Makeover.

I really, really want to go. Two small problems... it's in September, smack in the middle of classes, and it's in Fort Worth, Texas.

So, I sort of doubt I'm gonna be able to go, between the time out of school and the cost to get there, and stay if I were to go for the top ten finals.

I want to go, because I think it's a great thing, they take mustangs from BLM land, and give them to trainers for a hundred days. At the end of the hundred days, they show in Fort Worth, and at the end of the show, they're adopted by auction. The money goes to the Mustang Heritage Foundation.

I also want to go because at the finals, the top ten horses and trainers get to freestyle, and show off any special tricks, skills, or thingymabobbers they may have accomplished.

Last year, the finals included a dude swinging a chainsaw around on the back of his mustang, and a woman shooting balloons from the back of hers.

Stuff like that is just too cool, and I want to see it in person!

CM is accusing me of wanting to adopt a mustang, and I wouldn't be against having a mustang, but not through that program. Last year, one horse that went off pattern and didn't even make the finals was adopted for $50,000. Horse Town USA and the Mustang Heritage Foundation partnered on his adoption, and he became the official mascot of Horse Town USA.

I can't afford that kind of adoption fee!

I do want to go and watch, though. I'll probably spend that week whimpering and whining about not being able to go.


Sunday, July 6, 2008

Flying Lessons, Farmmom Style

Well, Farmmom and I have been excited for the past week or so because we needed to move cows. And, well, what better excuse to go for a ride?

I went out yesterday and got on Monkey to make sure he wasn't going to decide it was time to play since he hadn't been ridden in a couple of months. We didn't get really excited, mostly just reminded him of what he's supposed to do when a person is on his back. By the time I got done with him it was farking hot, so I didn't get on Legs. I figured, heck, she's too lazy to dump me out of spite anyway. The plan was that I would ride Legs and Farmmom would ride Monkey.

Well the plan changed. I rode Monkey, because, as Farmmom said "He's the best horse we got for chasing down runaways, and I'm out of practice."

Cue Ominous Music.

So, we get the horses loaded, hauled, and saddled. Farmmom gets a leg up to get on the Giant Horse, except that Legs has other ideas. Well, it's sort of excusable that she got excited and gave a few hops, she hasn't been ridden in a year. I swung up on her and convinced her that being evil was a bad idea, we got Farmmom loaded up, and off we went.

It probably would have been fine if our... ahem... help... hadn't had the World's Biggest Brain Fart. Instead of dropping the trailer and then heading off to help gather the cows up, he took off across the pasture banging and clanging dragging the four horse along behind.

I probably don't need to tell ya'll that the horses were a bit nervous about that loud contraption. So were the cows.

I looked up from a short discussion with Monkey about how he really could go towards the noisy thing, just in time to see Farmmom faceplant. Luckily, Legs wanted her buddy so she came right to me, and I was able to get to Farmmom just in time to provide a bit of a block to keep the cows from stepping on her as she gathered her wits, since our... ahem... help... wasn't paying attention and was gleefully driving cows hither and yon at a high rate of "get me the hell away from that thing."

Farmmom swore she was ok, in spite of the lovely cut on her temple from her glasses. Which she refuses to have photographed, so the Injury Chronicles will have to stay photo-less on this one.

Anyway, she swore she was fine, got back on the horse, and we made it back to the cows in time to stop our... ahem... help... from running them through the fence.

Bout this time, Farmmom hollered for me to flag Farmdad down and have him take Legs.

"I think I got dumped, but I can't remember."

Uh Oh. I got Farmdad over there to check her out, and held the herd with Monkey while we determined whether or not Farmmom needed to make a visit to the nice Emergency Room doctor.

Legs was wound enough that she wasn't going to be able to work, so she got loaded and hauled back to the corrals. Farmmom spent the rest of the morning as a passenger.

She remembers what happened now, she's oriented and all, she just got her bell rung pretty well.

On the bright side, Monkey performed really well, in spite of all the excitement, and especially in spite of our.... ahem.... help.

He and I had several times that we were the only ones with the herd, and he did everything I asked of him, even if he didn't know why. He even went over a fence that he'd seen a cow get caught up in for me. He wasn't really happy about it, but he went.

For only the second time he's moved cows, and the amount of new stuff that got thrown at him, he performed really well. I'm proud of my big ol' boy. Everyone says they got pictures of us workin, so when I get them I'll share any good ones. Even though Monkey boy was lookin pretty rough, I didn't have a brush for his mane and tail.

Legs and I will have discussions on the proper behavior for an equine whilst at work. If E takes Etta, we'll have those discussions at school, if not, Farmdad is saying he's gonna learn her hisself.

Friday, July 4, 2008

Weight, what?

While AD and a few others make lifestyle changes and lose weight, (you go guys!) I've made a few lifestyle changes as well.

For starters, I got a boyfriend that likes to feed me. So does his family.

He'll get a snack and feed me bites, (if I don't kype them first) and say, jokingly, "I'm gonna feed you up eventually, honey."

I never thought it would happen. I don't know how it happened, aside from the fact that I've been sitting on my duff a lot more lately, and, well, feeding the children when I have them reminds me to eat, too.

I don't know how much I've gained, since I don't own a scale and neither does Cowboy Mechanic. The Farmparents have one, so I'll check while I'm there this weekend, although I'll have to remember what the off-set is on that scale. It's a digital scale, but it's always been a few pounds off.

I know what I weighed two months ago, because I had a check-up. I know I've gained some, but at my size, every little bit seems to make a big difference. So, I'll check.

Gaining weight... never thought it would happen. I'll be overjoyed as soon as it stops going to places that get sore when they get bigger....

Hey... you think maybe that whole "hey, I'll give you some of mine" joke that people keep making finally worked?

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Random Things

1. It's more difficult than you think to accomplish any writing with three kids in the room. Even if they're engrossed with the television. Commercials are the enemy.

2. I don't care who you are, you are not going to please all three children no matter what you put on. I vote with Eldest Child, though... If I have to watch Dora one more time this week I'm going to shoot the TV.

3. I really, really don't want to spend any more time critiquing Traci's chapters. I love the woman to death, and I normally wouldn't mind helping her out... the stuff she shared with the class was actually pretty good. But this stuff is... well, its rougher than a row boat in a hurricane. On the one hand I'm cringing and pulling my hair out because she's making silly slip-ups, and on the other, I'm trying to balance my critique to be constructive. I think I'm doing pretty well, in spite of putting off the last chapter. I haven't said "You know better than this!!" I have, however, been putting comments in wherever thoughts occur that bring me out of the story.

4. Moving cows this weekend, so I'll be at the Old Homestead Friday, and riding, if not Friday, then Saturday. Must remind Monkey of how things work under saddle for Farmmom, and try out Etta and Legs. Whichever behaves better will be my mount for cattle pushing. Farmmom is taking bets on whether or not I'll get tossed.

5. I'm seriously considering bribing my doctor to write me a note saying that I need my dog with me for my mental health. I miss my puppy.

6. Now I understand all those times when I was growing up when I ran through the kitchen just in time to hear Farmmom mutter "God, I can't wait until school starts again!"

Edit: 7. I'm the third search result on Google for estrogen poisoning.

Wednesday, July 2, 2008


I finally got my procrastinating butt around to getting registered for classes today. Called Del, told him "I need classes!" and we started whipping out my schedule.

Riding class, 10:00 am Monday through Friday, check.

Equine Management 1:00 pm Monday and Wednesday, check.

Computer class, evening (blech) 5:30 pm Monday and Wednesday, but check.

Elective, Computerized Farm Records, 2:30 pm Monday and Wednesday, check.

Math, che.... er... wait.

"Do you want algebra or Ag math?"

"Ag math. Algebra hurts me."

"Ok, so that one will be from 11:00 to 12:15 Tuesday and.... um. Hold on."

"Wha? Just one day a week? That's odd..."

"Well no, it's supposed to be Tuesdays and Thursdays... but your riding class runs from 10:00 to 11:30 Monday through Friday, so we have a scheduling conflict."

"Well crap, is there another time?"

"No. Who was your dumbass adviser last year?"

"Um. You."

"I was afraid you'd say that."

"So what do we do?"

"Well, maybe we can work something out with Marilyn on the time conflict, maybe ride early, or something."

"Marilyn is good about things like that, so it shouldn't be a problem. If nothing else I can ride with another class on those days, maybe."

"Well, we won't be able to register you for the math class until she signs the time conflict slip, so don't let me forget to do that. My memory is about as long as my hair these days."

So, I have to talk to Marilyn and figure something out for the conflicted days... I'm sure it won't be too big a problem, if nothing else I'll ride with the freshmen those days and be her demonstrator. I don't have anything at all in the afternoons on Tuesdays and Thursdays, so I'm sure we'll be able to work something out.

Meanwhile, my official schedule doesn't show the math class. But I do have an official schedule, at least.