Friday, May 29, 2009

It's Official! Summer Is Here!

Our Pool
(Not really... But we call it that! This little gem
of the best kept secret is at an RV Park/Camp Ground in Town!)
The California/Missouri girl in me has to have an outdoor pool.
I grew up in pools! Whole lotta swim time...

The Big Pool in town is indoors.
After all, Winter is so so so long...

The Guppy
His shorts are bigger than him!

My Summer Toes!
Man, check out those awesome clouds!!!!
I Love clouds.
Big puffy white clouds.
And Thunderclouds.
Which came by later.

My Summer Whites
See those empty white chairs across the way?
It was just us!
1 hour of pure bliss!!!!
(between lamb feedings)

Cute Fish!
I want her legs..
Youth is so wasted on the young!

The last day of school was yesterday!

It was a great great day - we even got to swim at Our Pool after wards..

.For the First swim of the season (after the first summer hair cuts (by a pro) and first ice cream at the local Ice Cream Parlor)!

Oh I love love love love summer!!!!!!

I'm so glad we made it to the pool. The kids were hot from their last day, and Jake - who ate 6 pieces of Pizza thought he was going to burst and really needed to move around! So tell me, mother's of boys, why do they do these things? Why make bets with your little pals to see who can eat the most pizza????? Gads.

This afternoon a Thunderstorm came through and rained cats and dogs after lightening and thunder...not a swim day.

Hopefully we will go back this Sunday....

Our pool is mostly empty... we love it... it's not really 'our pool' but it feels that way!

I am in a blissful world at the pool. It is relaxing... Hypnotic.. Paradise.

And the next best thing to a vacation!!!!!

Train Wreck

It started as a gorgeous Friday...
Sami and I went for a walk.
Then I got ready for a party and some town errands.

I was heading to town to do my thing and and get my 'potluck dish' for a 'forced retirement' party for one of our teachers... yeah, that budget thing.

But, there was a train wreck about 8 miles from here. Check this out:

Local Paper

I was driving to town, and once I got on the highway, I saw those 'construction 'signs and 'be prepared to stop' signs...

Holy Moly. A real wreck. LOTS of the cars were off the track. Broken. Folded. Smashed. Big things.

By the time I got there the highway was opened again to one lane guided traffic. And that was about 9:30 am.

No one was hurt, thank goodness.

I felt so small compared to all that metal. My SUV is itsy bitsy compared to one train car...

Our rail line is for freight only.

Thank God it was not a passenger train.

The train tracks border the East Side of our ranch, for about 3 miles... This same train came by us, sometime during the night... Then derailed 8 miles down the track. Goodness...

The rumor I heard in town (at the Livestock Feed store!) was the switch messed up and caught the rear end of the train as it was passing and just pulled it like a whip.

Oh my...

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

A Quick Share... T Minus 8 minutes!


The house is blissfully quite! NO TV! NO Radio! Heaven! I love a quiet house..

We are all head down in projects...making our Last Day of School (aka Last Darn Minute) projects for our beloved teachers, friends, etc. The kids have to be in bed in 8 minutes (well, after the 8pm bottle feeding) and it's crunch time! Tomorrow is the last day (only 1/2) of school!

  • Sami is making jewelry downstairs at the kitchen table. Every now and then she freaks out and I run down to assist... So far we have raided my supplies for wire, and some good needle nose plyers to bend wire into itty bitty spots! Earings are hard to do!
  • Jake - well you have to know him.. He is also at the table making boy noises while he molds glow in the dark silly putty into little men. Not sure if these are gift for other boys, or just for him! But he is busy and creating.. Along with those funny rocket noises!
  • Dick - In his office doing office work. Not a peep...
  • Me? I gotta get cracking on those last minute Teacher cards!

Oh.. Wanna hear my Mother of the Year moment? I was blissfully out mowing the lawn earlier today, and came in about 10 am. Did I mention today is just gorgeous????

So, there was a message from the school wanting to know if I was going to make the 'Student of the Lunch' lunch - (parents come eat with their children) to be with Jake, and if so, if I was going to eat cafeteria lunch or not! Uh.. Lunch is at 11:30!

CRUD! It was on my calendar but I am running a day late (dollar short)!
So, quick shower...
Bottle feed lambs...
Quick trip to the grocery store in the small town of Haines
And wella! I was at the table eating lunch with my boy!


Ever have one of those days?

It ranks right up there with my earlier in the week stunt at the tooth fairly... Let's just say, the Tooth Fairy does not have a great memory in this house... She pulled a smooth one on Monday - let me tell you... sly hand manuever under the pillow, switch, and back behind the back!


Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Hero Arts and Cards for Heroes - Challenges

4th of July & Born in the USA Cards
See the USA block in Red?
I made that with my new cricut!!!

It's Your Special Day
(I'm lovin' the stars!)

Born in the USA
For a soldier to send home as a birthday card for a loved one

It's Your Special Day and Congratulations Cards

I told you I was on a star kick!!!

This is how I spent my Memorial Day.
Making Cards for the Cards for Heroes project.
And of course, mowing, raking, feeding lambs, doing laundry and feeding my family :)

BBQ??? We had slow cooked ribs and mashed potatoes for dinner!
AND we all had a fun ice cream treat midday!
The kids and I delivered ice creams to Dick & Ramon who were at the headquarters
making the pasture poultry 'house'


This is an awesome week at the Hero Arts Blog! The challenge this week is to make manly cards, and for an 'extra' challenge, to make cards to send for the Cards for Heroes organization!

How cool is that!!!!!!!

I actually started early - thanks to the weekend Cards for Heroes Blog Hop!

Right now, I have 9 completed cards to send off! Gee! and for the 25 + 2 challenge which lasts all summer, I'm ahead of the game!

Yippee Skippie!!!!

Reality Check:
I started out making 4th of July cards.. Which would be good for the 'Any Soldier' program (send them a card you sign) but not for the Cards for Heroes - which are cards for the soldiers to send back home.. Too long of a delay.. So I switched to birthday, special day and congratulations cards!

And, as I stated earlier.. I am on a star kick right now!!!!!!!!

And Red White and Kraft....

Vintage fun.

OK.. I gotta go rake some grass!

You Know it's Spring When....

Backyard Shenanigans
The kids are actually seeking refuge from the lambs!

Part of the Backyard Scene
See how tall the grass is under the trampoline?
Holy Moly!
Lambs, chickens, cats, kids.
Oh my...

The Far Away View
Dang that grass!
Its grows
It gets cut
It gets raked
It's needs water
But it sure is gorgeous!


These are the signs of Spring at Casa de Sexton:
  1. The apple trees are blossoming and smell so good!
  2. The grass is super tall and we can't keep Mr. Deere on top of it - or a mower person. We mow in sections.. It can be a daily chore.
  3. The grass needs to be raked.... and 'raker people' are hard to come by!
  4. The bummer lambs follow you everywhere - and the kids seek refuge on the trampoline
  5. The chickens are very chatty and like to get into the piles of raked grass
  6. Bottle feeding schedule is out of control! GADS... 6 am for all 10 (2 babies died yesterday); 11 am for the babies, noon for the big ones, 4 pm for the babies, 6 pm for big ones, 8 pm for the babies.
  7. We just could not get away for a decent outing yesterday.. Due to #6, and yard work.. The kids and I had hoped to go swimming! Another day...
  8. More chicks are arriving this Thursday... Mr. Sexton is building the pasture poultry house! Yeah!
  9. The town/shopping list includes:
  • Claritin D
  • Eye drops
  • Wasp Spray
  • 4 bags of chick starter
  • Lamb pellets
  • 3 bags of layena
  • 2 bags of lamb milk replacer
  • Coffee (lots, please!)
  • Lots of fun ice creams and the makings for root beer floats
Yep! Spring has sprung!

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Go Green - A Day to Celebrate

Getting Motivated! Seeing Stars
Do you see the Red USA piece?
I cut that out with my cricut!

A Day To Celebrate - 4th of July
For the Hero Arts 'Go Green' Challenge
I used a Wrangler tag that I have been saving from one of Sami's shirts!


I've been gathering inspiration from the Cards for Heroes Blog Hop! Earlier today I stamped a boat load of stars on Kraft card stock for card bases... Tomorrow I'll be assembling them and getting a start on the summer '25 plus 2' challenge!!!! I've also enlisted the help of my new Cricut Expression! Fun fun fun!!!

What's the 25 plus 2???? The current challenge for Cards for Heroes is to make 25 cards over the summer, plus an additional 2. One additional one that you sign with a message for the Any Hero program, and another - a birthday card for Any Soldier. See that blinkie at the top? Click on it to get more info!

Ranch News: Five more bummer lambs arrived today! That makes 12 bottle babies... Crazy crazy crazy! So today was spent cleaning out boxes - freshening them with new shavings, and making room for the new babies!

We also had another Thunderstorm come through in the early evening... I love those! Reminds me of Missouri.... love that place!

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Stopped Me in My Tracks... Cards for Heros and...

Where Have all the Flowers Gone???

Ok friends... I am sitting here, checking out all the blogs involved in the Cards for Heros Bloghop...And let me tell you! It's the who's who of the Card Making World!!!! OH my gosh.. It is such a gorgeous array of talent, inspiration and respect for our troops!

Before I tell you what stopped me in my tracks I want to share with you the gal that started it all.

Sandy Allnock.

I know this gal! I've been to her place and I have seen her Cards for Heroes setup/office/shipping center/boxes/etc! It was over a year ago, before 'she went big'!!

Sandy, you Rock! The blog hop starts here: The Cards for Heros Blog Hop...

And, I got 'stopped in my tracks' right here... Where Have all the Flowers Gone.

A song, from my youth! And, now that I am older, wiser, and more aware.. I finally 'get it'.

Go check it all out.

And join me.. in making cards this weekend (be sure to read about what they need!), and sending them to Sandy.

And, Thank You to all of the families and service men and women who are and have made so many sacrifices on our behalf! We are so lucky to have you!!!!!

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

OOPS! Spoke Too Soon! New Lamb in the Box!

And Who might you be?
We won't know until the kids get home and name him.
I want to call him Skunk.
But the next letter is 'L'.
That's blue grease marker on his head.
Dick does this so I know who is who.
Like branding.
The marks are in different spots.
Actually, it helps him 'catch them' later, if he marks one,
he comes back to find the lamb he marked!

The Rest of the Bummer Lambs
They are trying to suck on me...
Looking for the nipples.
I mean bottles.

I love this Photo!
You might want to zoom in on this one!
Look for:
The Ducks
The Chickens
The sheep out the field
The Backhoe (working on ditches)
The bummer lambs
My husband!

This is when he 'caught' me and gave me a new job..

No going to town until later!


OK... So I went outside to take photos of the bummer lambs...

Oh my.. What a gorgeous day! It's 47 degrees, no wind, and I was just in heaven!
For 30 minutes, that is!

There I was minding my own business. And my husband 'found me'.

'Oh, by the way, there's another lamb in the box'. He said to me.

'Do I need to feed it'? I asked, full of shuga' (short for shug)-I was hoping to get out of it..

'Yep. You're feed the rest at 11, right?' He said, all throaty....

(Excuse me, I was trying to work on a romance novel there for a moment!!! All that warm toasty sunshine!)


Oh yeah! 11 am! '

Yes! I'll be feeding them at 11!', my heart beat faster.
With the realization that time has once again gotten away from me.

CRAP.. It's 10 am. I got lost in my photo-shoot.. AKA, carried away.. Not only did I get the bummer lambs, but I also got carried away with the cows!

You will see why later!

Off to the next feeding we go!

Then town.


And Lunch.

I'm hungry!

Bottle Lambs aka Bummers (The Process)

Bottle Lambs - The Last Resort
The Tube and Syringe
These are used when we have to 'tube' a lamb.
When a bottle lamb can't drink on it's own, meaning, it won't take a bottle,
this tube has to go down it's throat to it's tummy.
For some reason, mostly Jake's lambs have been the ones getting tubed.
And, he has to hold them down (they are lying on their sides, stretched out)
while they are being tubed.
Often the tube wants to go to the lungs instead.
And, we try again, and again, and again.
We say a prayer for each lamb that has to endure this.
Jake and I both have been in tears during this process.
Again, it is not fun.

The Top of My Dryer
Yep. Baby bottles. They seem to work best for us.
The Process, you ask?
1. The bucket has dry lamb milk replacer in it.
2. Mix with warm water in the bigger container
3. Strain
4. Pour into bottles
5. Go Feed
6. Repeat Every 4 hours (during the day)

This is the List of Lambs
The kids assign each new lamb a name
We are working through the alphabet
The hatch marks are how many ounces each lamb gets
(they start with 4)
That last guy, Khipmunk (yes, with a K) died last night.
The guys with their names crossed off have also died during their brief stay with us.
Basically, we are trying to rescue babies that have been 'found' and,
not under good circumstances.
We have 250 Mamas that are having babies right now.
A good lambing ratio is 150 percent.
That would be all mamas having at least 1 baby, and half with twins.

Two of the Bottle Lambs
(Back when there were 2!)
The orange thing is a towel I used to keep a new one
extra warm
(when it was really cold out - like last week, they arrive cold,
and with cold mouths. They have to be heated up)
A prolonged cold mouth equals death.

The Setup In the Garage
The Big Tall Box is for bummer lambs
The long box in back has 75 chicks in it
(don't get me started on the chicks!)


Perhaps this is too much info for all of you... But, heck, I'm sharing my life...

I'm trying to get caught up on all my 'what's going on at the ranch' photos for you!

According to my list, you still have not seen Shearing Photos of 2009, or pictures of all our bottle lambs! (Right now, we have 6 live ones that are thriving and happy and healthy)... Right now my babies are outside getting fresh air and sunshine. I'll move them back to the box at the next feeding.


Here's the deal.

My husband checks the fields daily. He's seeing how everything is going.. Making sure no coyotes have come and killed babies or mamas (Hmm.. I have not heard a word about 'kills' yet! That is good news! Usually they arrive because they 'smell' the afterbirth and are coming in to get snacks), and seeing if any babies are separated from their mamas, or if any mamas are having problems giving birth to a baby. When he finds a baby that fits the 'bummer' category, he brings them home to our 'bummer lamb' nursery in the garage. Last night, two new ones arrived before dinner. All 'systems stopped' - meaning, we drop everything and go into 'feed the new babies' mode.

Dick had a jar full of colostrum that he milked from a ewe (OK mothers, you all know what that is). The colostrum is the 'heavy duty antibodies' that have to be fed to each newborn. Problem was, one of the newborns was 'pulled' from it's mama (Dick assisted in the birth)... The baby had a huge head, and needed to be tubed. Unfortunately, he did not live through the night.

Each time we get a new bottle lamb, the kids name them...

This actually breaks my heart. At times, We are attempting to accomplish the impossible.

In my mommy job, I attempt to hold my kids and tell them, God has a plan for each of these lambs, and yes they had to go, but we are their resting place before they go to Heaven. I also say that our lambs are lucky because they had two loving kids who gave them a warm place before they left, and they knew they were loved and special.

Well.. I think this is a good stopping spot. Suddenly, my mind is now moving on to other philosophical topics, and I have got to get to town before the next feeding!

I promise to post happy photos next!


Let's Play A Game! I Spy...

OK...yes.. there is a lot going on on this table! A few projects in phases...

Life is a bit 'out of control' right now.. as you can tell by my crafty desk. I attempted to create something in between all the other duties of the day (bottle feeding lambs, entering sales data for the markets, prepping a ranch deposit, making dinner, refereeing homework, etc. etc. etc.).

Oh yeah.. I also did some 'getting to know Mr. Expression! I also watched the EVER SO SNOOZEFEST DVD that came with the Cricut, to learn how to do everything.. OMG... talk about putting you to sleep! I had to slap myself to stay awake! I think I was too preoccupied analyzing the two gals' speaking abilities, their nails, and their wardrobe to stay focused... BUT they did mess up! My Mr. E was 'glued shut' with a clear sticky label.. and there I was trying to open the lid with two hands.. it just was not working... Until my 47 year old eyeballs caught the culprit!

So, let's play 'I spy'...

Can you find on this table two things:
1. What I made with my new toy
2. What came in yesterday's mail????????

Winners get a RAK!

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Thank You Little Sis!

I got a really cool present for my birthday! The Cricut Expression...


My little sister Paula!!!!!

I also got four cartridges! Two fonts (Plantin Schoolbook and Stone Script) and two decorating special graphic packages! One is Home Accents and the other is Graphically Speaking!!! LOVE LOVE LOVE These!!!

And inks!

I just opened the box (one week later)!!!! And I am so darn excited!!!

And I just plugged it in!


I gotta figure this baby out!

I have to read the books and watch the CD and I am ON CLOUD 9!!!

(BTW: My Big Shot still has not arrived... Stalking is still going on!)

Friday, May 15, 2009

Only 8 More Days...

I just read the headlines.

Our schools are closing early due to budget shortfalls this year.... Since mortgages are being defaulted on in the bigger cities in the state, the State dollars from property taxes are less than projected.. and thus, the state dollars to the schools got cut... And, industries are shutting down...

Oh that's not all. There have been tons of meetings over the past months in anticipation of the shortfall. One elementary school in town is getting closed, one of the Middle school buildings is getting shut down, and all the elementary grades are being combined into like schools (1-3 in one school, 4-6 in another, etc.), and Kindergarten is moving to it's own wing in the High School... Crazy... OH.. and there was a 'draw straws' to see which teachers would get laid off. How fair is that? Some really good teachers lost their jobs while some OK teachers get to stay..

Families with multiple aged children could literally have their kids in multiple schools. The neighborhood schools are no longer. Except for ours. We are lucky. We are classified different since we are rural.

Our local taxes are up to snuff. Heck, in rural America, we are always in a recession! Seriously. Our median income in our County(total population 16,000) is $24,000. That is NOT a family wage at all. Believe me, as I job hunt, a $15/hour job seems like hitting the lotto!

OK.. Back to Schools:

Instead of getting out on June 4th, our last day will be May 28th...

One week earlier.

Yet, with Memorial Day on May 25th.. it's awfully tempting to say 'why bother' with a 3 day school week and instead hit the highway...

Who am I kidding? We can't afford a vacation!


Perhaps we should enjoy every moment we can with our beloved teachers. We do have an awesome school. I love our itty bitty little rural school of only 80 kids for K-6th. And, the budget cuts are going to keep on coming... Who knows what will be in store for all of us next school year.


Thursday, May 14, 2009

Shearing Sheep.... the ins and outs

Your's Truly - Two Years Ago
This is how I usually spend my birthday!


I neglected to take photos of our shearing operation yesterday! All the photos above are from 2 years ago... When it was sunny and gorgeous.. And, shearing landed on my birthday!

The shearing crew showed up Tuesday night (yep, birthday night - so no party) ... We've been waiting for the crew for 2 weeks but the rain keeps them away... and now that we are lambing, it's a real 'bummer' (sorry for the pun) because some of the ewes are having their babies in the lane, or right after they are shorn! Poor mommies!!!!

So, since we are short on hired hands, we kept the kids home to 'work' sheep. I'm sure the school just loves me right now... We are one of the few ranch families left with young kids at our rural school..Which to me, is sad...

Shearing is a 2-day job. We have 250 ewes.

The kids and my husband did not get home until 6:30 pm last night, and it took another hour before everyone settled in (change dirty clothes, collect eggs, etc). They worked a super long day (they come home for lunch but have to turn around and go back out)...

So, for their long day efforts I had a tasty dinner waiting, and snacks! OH.. and I did most of the chores (feed lambs, feed chickens, chicks and ducks)...

Isn't it amazing how food cures most aches and pains? Our meal was mashed potatoes, veggies slathered in garlic and butter (those baby cabbages that I can never remember their name!), and BBQ chicken drumsticks.. Chicken is a rarity on a beef and sheep place! Well, except for the 70 plus hens running around!!!!

So, today we were prepared for another day of shearing...

But... it rained last night, which means wet wool...

We aren't sure if we will shear or not... but we kept the kids home again. Either way, today will be better than yesterday! EVERYONE came home sore yesterday!

So, I'll drive the kids down to the headquarters in 15 minutes and we will see how it all goes...

I'll take photos this time, I promise!

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Caardvark's Challenge - Don't Quote Me! #2

Here is another entry for the Caardvark's 'Don't Quote Me' challenge.

Both the tree and quote stamp are from the Stampin' Up set Nature Silhouettes.

The brad is from K&Co.

Thanks for looking! I still have a few more I hope to crank out!

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Caardvark's Challenge - Don't Quote Me!

The May 5th Challenge over at Caardvark's is to use a quote on your card. (What??? No Cinco de Mayo theme???? Just Kiddin'!!) The challenge closes on May 17th so there is plenty of time to get a few creations in!!! And let me tell you, I have several quotes I want to use!!!!

I LOVE this quote stamp from Unity! It speaks volumes. I do get to do all the things it says. How lucky am I?

Anway, the entire Unity Set, 'Birdie Inspiration' smokes, if you ask me! There are six quotes in the set, in addition to a frame, birdie, a floral sillouette, and a flourish. I used the flourish on the background of this card....

And, it just so happens that the RAK at Caardvark's is a huge ginormous stash of Unity goodies!!!!

OK, so you better play! I have about four more I want to do!!!!

Card Recipe:
Stamps: Unity Birdie Inspiration
Hardware: SU
Linen Thread & Hemp: SU
Star punches: SU
Markers: SU
Versmark Ink

Have a happy day! Mine is FABULOUS!!!!!!

Early Morning Phone Calls!

My little sis called this morning at 6:30 am...

She sang me the Happy Birthday song! Tee Hee! Well, actually, she sang it to my adorable daughter, thinking it was me... So she had to sing twice... Thanks Sista! OH... and she gave me the heads up to stalk the UPS man! Today a very important package is arriving!!!! Chirp Chirp! A cricket is going to be in the house!

I am so excited...

Remember my Big Shot win? It has not arrived yet! It hasn't even shipped yet!! Bummer...
Thank goodness for crickets...

OH.. Then early morning call #2 was received at 7:30 am...

This one was from the Department of Ag. The INSPECTOR is coming to check out the meat freezers (for our natural lamb and beef meat sales business)... He does this every year.

Oopsy... That means I have to get out of my PJs!!!! DANG! I so wanted a PJ day!

Interview Recap:

I got home late after my interview last night... The interview was at 8pm, and I left here at 7:40 pm.. Keep in mind ON A NORMAL DAY it should only take 10 minutes MAX to get to that itty bitty town that is 7 miles away.. BUT TWO HUGE A** Tractors were in the road! And I mean 'in the road' . The don't take one lane... They take them all... So, after I finally got around them (very trick dodging the disks floundering in the back) I BEAT CHEEKS at close to 80 mph...

All for not. But I was on time!!!!!

They were running late, a half hour, and suggested I go to the BAR and get a soda... Excuse me? THE BAR on a Monday night? And me all dolled up and looking 'hot'??? I don't think so! I live in a rural area.. Where everyone knows your name...
Had I gone in that BAR the rumors would have been flying! So...
I sat outside in my car, thank goodness I had a scrappy magazine (Scrapbooks Etc.) and my cell phone! I chatted mostly with that silly sista I mentioned above.. Oh the jokes we came up with regarding the 'upcoming interview':

Things like:
Does this mean I can arrive at work 30 minutes late?
Or, oh don't worry, remember, I'm interviewing you too! And taking notes!
Or, heck, that soda at the bar? Yeah.. As in Jack and Soda!
Or, ya know, you never shoulda sent me to the Bar... Too much temptation there!

(It got worse.. she asked 'whata mean you have an interview and your at a bar?')...

So, in the interest of keeping it clean, I'll end it right there!

BTW: The interview was actually a lot of fun! Great people! Lots of laughing, chatting... All women of course... I like those gals! My Sista really got me in the mood....

Well, I better get ready for Mr. Inspector... Hope he's ok with the box of lambs in the garage!!!

Off I go. Gotta work... Well, I take that back... I've been working since 5am!

The ususal...

Breakfast and lunches made starting at 5am...
Kitchen cleaned
Fed the Bummer lambs at 6am (OK girls, I HEAR YOU! Photos are coming!)
Then the 'kid's chores' that they did not finish before catching the bus...

Water to the chicks
Free'd the chickens from their house
etc. etc. etc.

Get this! A storm is coming! Little bits of snow were pelting me in the face!

Crazy ol' Ranch Life!

Monday, May 11, 2009

Mother's Day Recap - 2 Events Down... More to Go!

Some of my new plants! I also got strawberry plants
They are all in the garage,
hidden from the chickens
The chickens should be moving to their new home by Friday
Then the yard is all mine!
Except for the bummer lambs

The kidlets and Me
In a nice, toasty greenhouse!
Oh was it heaven...
Now I know where to run too when it's cold...

My Apprentice!
The new Lawn Ranger!
I'm free!
(well, except for touch ups, raking, etc. etc.)

Sami and Mr. Deere
And a few of our Heifers looking on!
I have to start the mower for her. Her legs are not quite long enough!

The Raker
That's actually a shovel. He had other duties - in the dog pen,
before raking...


Yesterday was wonderful! Well, the whole weekend, really... Even though Jake has been fighting a nasty cold...(he missed 2 days of school and a field trip)... he's finally on the mend... His sister 'was nice enough' to bring home all his homework on Thursday, and he got to catch up.. somewhat... last night was a a furious 'model building' project - the courthouse.. Something for history? Beats me... All I know is we got to use my scrappy supplies.. Fun!

Here's the Low Down:

Friday Night: The Pendleton Farmer's Market: Sami went with me. Home at 10pm. I bought 2 new plants! Geraniums... Love their earthy smell...

Saturday: Yard work! I trained my new apprentice... Sami, how to mow! She's going to be an excellent driver.. Very conscience! She and Mr. Deere are fast friends now... Saturday night, we went out to dinner.. All four of us... no babysitter, so we all celebrated our 14th year Anniversary at the Haines Steakhouse...

Sunday: Started with more yard work! Jake was recruited as a raker.. Sami still mowed.. I got to rake, weed, supervise... Then off to the Ace Greenhouse, Mexican Restaurant and back home...

Lambing season is going strong!!!

We are up to 5 bummer lambs now...they are in the garage under heat lambs.

Bottle feeding schedule:
6 am (me)
11 am (me, when no kids)
4pm (kids)
8 pm. (kids)

It's a small world out here in our area. The nursery is owned by Sami's teacher's husband. So Sami's teacher was working.. She works 2 jobs this time of year - in addition to being the school principal.. Make that 3 jobs! That woman deserves a medal! Man.. I thought I had luggage under my eyes...

We ran into Jake's teacher at the nursery also!

And, one of the gals working was the La Grande market manager last year, and she just so happens to work in Human Resources full time, at the University... She said she has seen my name on the two jobs I applied for and that I am 'in the running' and doing well!

Oh cheese. To small of a world at times!

Tonight is my other interview!

Up Next: Two Birthdays...

Thursday, May 7, 2009

What's Happening... Top 16

Here's a quick list of 'the life of Andi'...

  1. I taught my first class yesterday! Yep. At our LSS (Local Scrapbook Store), which, for me, is 17 miles away! The owner has been asking me for months (so flattered!) to teach scrapbooking and card making classes... But, I was hesitant! I didn't want to turn my favorite therapy/obsession/hobby into a 'job'. Yesterday was a card class.. for Mother's Day! I survived! Tee Hee. Note: Check in with other friends who do this for tips!
  2. I'll be teaching another class for Fathers' Day. We are going to alter a clock! Guess who is getting a clock for Father's Day this year???? :)
  3. I cut my son's hair the other day... Yesterday? It's all a blur... No, Tuesday. Yesterday he was sick! Anyway, I guess since I cut Sami's hair, he was all impressed. His bangs are way too short! Poor kid.
  4. I caught my son's bug. Today is my sick day. That's what mom's do, right? I promise I have not been kissing pigs! (That's for Rebs and her email).
  5. I had a phone job interview with five people over a week ago... Tap.. Tap.. Tap.. Waiting for the outcome. I hate this part!!! This is a University Job.
  6. I have another job interview - with 6 people - Monday night at 8pm! My bedtime! Oh dear... This is for a City Job.
  7. I was supposed to help in my daughters class today with a scrapbook/card Mother's Day project. But, since I got sick, I sent my husband with a bag full of goodies to the school, and a sample card. Get this... he never took the bag to the school! It went to town and back instead!!! I'm bummed .. the teacher was bummed... Note to self: Drive it yourself!
  8. My 14th Anniversary was yesterday... but we have not done a darn thing.. Postponed until the weekend... Oh.. and two baby lambs arrived yesterday! Well, bummers... More lambs are being born daily!
  9. Cinco de Mayo was fun! I made my Grandma's Spanish Rice and my husband made ever so tasty Margarittas. Maybe that should be our anniversary celebration! It's looking 'dismal' this weekend anyway... The babysitter called. No. Can. Do.
  10. We have to shear sheep as soon as this place dries out (it's been raining for days)
  11. I think our Mother's Day Plans will turn into Sheep Shearing Plans
  12. I think our Anniversary Plans will also turn into Sheep Shearing Plans
  13. I need to mow my lawn.. Mr. Deere is trapped in the shed that now houses bunnies, ducks, chicks, and about 50 hens... I'm sure he's ready to bust loose! I sure hope he is ready to run when that sun busts out!
  14. Tomorrow I go to the Pendleton Market. 1.5 hours away. A night market. But I get to sleep in on Saturday!!! (you know, until 6am if I am lucky).. Yipee! My last free Saturday (I shall savor it!)... unless we are shearing...
  15. Did I tell you we are lambing? Yes I did!
  16. The cows got moved behind our yard, today.. They have already busted the chicken house fence, and one was caught in my yard...
OK! That's a wrap! Gotta go cook for the crew!

Ranch Related News - May

I updated the ranch blog. Got lots going on!

Here's a link: To the Ranch

Catch you all later!

Monday, May 4, 2009

PageMaps Spring Card Sketch - Mother's Day Card

Mother's Day Card
(click on image to see better view!)

A View of the Inside

I'm getting ready to send my little Mother's Day package off to Seattle, and the PageMaps Blog Spring Card Sketch Contest was the perfect motivation to make this card!

I really like this sketch!

The card size is 6x6, the same size as the Basic Grey papers and the Stampin' Up envelope that the scallop Die Cut came with. (Some things just work out!!!)

I cut the butterfly from one of the patterned paper sheets.

The back of the card is covered with yellow paper and matches the small scallop... I will write my longer letter on the back and a short message under the flap.

Card Recipe:
Patterned Papers: Basic Grey Urban Prairie
Large Scallop Die Cut: Stampin' Up (used for the front flap)
Little Scallop: Stampin' Up punch
Stamps: Sentiment: Stampin' Up; little butterfly: Hero Arts
Gems: Hero Arts
Ribbon: Unknown
Hemp: SU
Button: Autumn Leaves
Glittery Pen: Spica

Thanks Becky Fleck! And, congratulations on PageMaps turning 3!!!!

For more info on PageMaps, check out the webpage here: PageMaps

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Hero Arts Flowers Challenge

Here's another creation I did today... after making lunch, and running the kids to their 4H club meeting...

I feel like a spaz... meaning - I am 'rushing' to try and submit a few entries for the weekend challenges... and nothing feels 'super duper' well constructed... KWIM? It's like, running crazy, doing a million things, and none of them very well.

Speaking of which, I better go check on the roast that is in the oven!

Stamps: Hero Arts Clear Design Share Laughter set...

Gotta run!!!!


CHF Challenge - CPS Sketch

There is a challenge at the Cornish Heritage Farms 'Get Fresh' Blog to create a project, using a Cornish Heritage Farms stamp set, and to use the CPS (Card Positioning Systems) sketch...from last week (due date was yesterday!)... And today is the last day for the CHF challenge!

So far this is about the only project I have gotten done on my NSD 'play' list! It's a wonderfully rainy day - the kids are inside and wanting all sorts of help with their projects as well...

Card Recipe:
CHF stamps: Writing Paper 6x6 scrapblock stamp; and Making the Grade (school houses, star and sentiments)
Jenni Bowlin Chalkboard Alpha Stickers
Ric Rac - altered with ranger distress inks
CS from SU, Bazzil and Walmart...

Thanks for looking!

Saturday, May 2, 2009

OH... And About that Hair Cut!

Yes... I know I know.. the hair cut was a little crooked!

I know that.

And you know that!

But you know what????

SHE apparently does not know that!!!

It's our little secret, until we get to the professionals for a 'thinning'...

Wink Wink

Today I....

Today I woke at 3:20 am. On purpose.

And, left at 4:20 am... On purpose. After loading the rig with 4 full ice chests of meat/eggs, and all the tables, chairs, etc.

Drove 2 1/2 hours in the rain. Mostly in the dark.

Then stood under a canopy, in the rain, for 4 hours - after getting drenched during setup - at a Farmer's Market in Boise, ID. Sami went with me.. She was cold and drenched.. So she got to hang out inside a warm pizza place near my booth... lucky dog. and she got to read a book! Super Lucky dog!!!

Then, drove home, 2 1/2 hours... Oh.. After we scouted out Office Depot so Sami could redeem her gift certificate! Office supplies, go figure!

The boys stayed home nice and cozy... had it been sunny, then would have been doing ditch work. Yep.. real ditch work! You know, back hoes, shovels, etc.

I should have stayed home for NSD!!!!! DANG IT!!! I missed out!!!!!!!!

My socks were soaked inside my boots... my gorgeous favorite Ariats... they are not waterproof!

But, now I'm dry... and tired....and just wanna veg...

I'm gonna crack a Corona...with some lime.

And, I'm gonna sit in front of the TV - I hear Sponge Bob in the background...

Hope to get to play tomorrow, before the kid's 4H meeting time!!!

Most likely I'll be up before dawn!!!

Take care Peeps!
Hope all of you are dry, inky, and having fun!!!!

Friday, May 1, 2009

Saturday May 2nd (Tomorrow) is National Scrapbook Day!!


Big stuff going on in the all things paper, ink, and awesome embellishments world!


So many places to play!

So many great prizes!

So many great sales!

OK.. So I have a Boise market, (up at 3:30 am, home at 4pm) .. Then, after a nap, and some Dr. Pepper I get to play!!!!!

Here is my list (so far!) of the "HOT" Spots to play~~
(I will be adding to this as I discover more hot spots!!!)

So, if you have more to share for NSD please post it here for all of us who hope to play!!!

Hero Arts - Current Challenge is to stamp on fabric
Studio Calico - LOTS going on!
2Peas - LOTS going on!
Cornish Heritage Farms - Current challenge is to use the CPS sketch! Look around..
Caardvarks - Current Challenge is Trees! And they are celebrating members!
Purple Onion Designs - Sale! Can you say, Sale?????
CPS - See Cornish Heritage farms... Sketch going on! Prize is Cornish Heritage Farms stamps!
PageMaps - Awesome site! Cool sketch challenge!!!!!
Unity - These girls are sooooooo inspirational! LOTS going on!!!!

(I'll have to add more! Gotta do a search!)