Thursday, April 30, 2015

Along my path...

 I wander through prairie pastures and down dirt roads 
when I take my daily walks.  
There is always something interesting along my path. 
Will you join me?

A pair of bull snakes.

 Star Lily (small enough to fit in your palm)

 A busy ant pile.

 Hood phlox.

 A puddle in a fresh cow pie.
(A fairy swimming hole?)

A fresh cow placenta.

Closer to home...
 Rhubarb coming up.

And grape hyacinth.
Thanks for walking with me!

Sunday, April 26, 2015


Not snow snowballs.  
Quilty fabric snowballs!

I've started a new quilt for the newest grandbaby.
Lyla gets a snowball quilt.

I started with a 5" charm pack of Moda's LOL
and will use one or more of the LOL fabrics for the back.
The white space is off-white with tiny white stars.
It's hard to see in the pics, but you can if you enlarge them.

I'm trying to decide if I should have some white space
--with the tiny star fabric--
 between the snowballs (like this)
 or leave them close together (like this).
Which do you like?

Since these are small 5" unfinished blocks, 
they will shrink to 4.5" finished blocks within the quilt.

I only had 42 LOL blocks and needed more so
I added some coordinating fabrics from my own stash
to infuse into the LOL blocks. 

It's an evolving process.
I'm having fun!

Saturday, April 25, 2015

New shoes and walking...

Hubs and I took our homemade breakfast burritos and coffee and drove off in the pick-up to feed cows and calves and to look things over this morning.  It was one of those "Know thy flock" outings in which we were checking up on the mamas and babies, making sure everything looked right.  The fog made it difficult to find them, but we were confident we saw the majority of the cattle.

It remained a drippy, misty, gray day, but with very little moisture falling into the rain gauge.  We were really hoping this might be a good-chance-of-rain day, but there's tonight and tomorrow which look promising. 

Despite the cool, misty-moisty day, I took my daily walk through the pasture.  It was really quite refreshing to me.  I got to try out my new walking shoes for the second time.  I really love these new shoes.  My old walking shoes were beginning to hurt my feet for some reason.  The soles were pretty well worn out and the  laces part was starting to dig into the top of my foot.  It was time for a new pair. I'm so thrilled with these New Balance WX711 tennies that I'm considering buying myself a second pair.  One for walking on the gravel roads and pastures and one for nice.  Plus you know how shoe companies change things up every year?  Just when you find a pair of shoes you really love, they stop making them just when you are ready for another pair.

I've always been a walker and it is not difficult for me to get up and go, but I know it isn't that easy for some.  My daughter, who is a new mama to her third baby girl, is trying to get more exercise and get back to a regular walking schedule.  Spring and summer days will help that.  She informed me yesterday that there is an app on my phone called S Health that when installed, becomes a pedometer and tracks your every step.  It has been said (somewhere) that every human should walk 10,000 steps a day for good health.  I flopped my smartphone in my pocket yesterday at noon and by evening I had tallied up 8100 steps which amounts to 4.35 miles and 366 calories burned.  I was pretty happy with that since I didn't wear my phone all morning.   Today I put my phone in my pocket for most of the day and tallied up 10,995 steps which is about 5.8 miles and 452 calories burned.  Now it's kinda fun to see results like that just from taking a two mile walk and fiddling around walking about the house, out in the yard, up and down stairs, and out to the chickens.  But I sure think that taking a phone along is a cumbersome thing.  It's too big, and some days I don't have pockets.  Putting my phone in my jeans pocket like the young kids do, does not appeal to me.  I can hardly bend over if it's in my front pocket, and I don't want to sit on it if it's in my back pocket.  It's ok putting the smart phone in a coat pocket, but I won't be wearing a coat all summer.  You know, it's not that I really NEED a pedometer, but it's kinda fun.  I was looking at pedometers on Amazon and this one appeals to me.  Simple.  Uncomplicated.  Do you ever wear a pedometer while walking and going about your day?

Monday, April 20, 2015



The Peeps arrived at the feed store today! After some rancher-friends stopped in and delivered a cat mid-morning, I jumped in the car and went after the baby chicks.  I ordered 25 of various breeds:  Rhode Island Red, Buff Orpington, Barred Rock, White Rock, and American Auracana.  They are ALL just so cute!  I had to stop by the town-grankids' house to let them see the chicks and hold their fuzzy little bodies for a few minutes before I went home.  There is just so much wonderment in a fuzz-ball chick -- the loud peep-peep, the warm, soft body, the kind eyes, the little feet, the handful-size of them -- all captivating to little hands and hearts.

After getting home I set up the chickie coop with a large box, heat lamp, feed and water and set the peeps free, one at a time, making sure to dip each beak into the water before letting them go.  They seem very healthy and active which is a good sign.  The neighbor grankids took their turns holding each color of chick and picking their favorites.  It'll be an everyday event for them, checking on the peeps.

The new cat that came to live with us is a neutered male cat.  He's a silky, black cat who is very friendly.  I left him in the barn and plan to keep him in there a couple days so he knows where "home" is.  That is, of course, unless he finds his way out.  It is far from escape-proof for cats.  So far he seems happy to be here. I hope he proves a good mouser!

We are still busy calving cows, and it's been a good spring for it.  The weather has been mostly mild with no heavy rains or snows to complicate things.  We're hopeful that we will get some good spring moisture yet, but for now, the dry days make calving easy.  We will brand the heifers' calves this week sometime.

We moved the sheep herd to summer pasture yesterday.  Oh, how I wish I had brought my camera.  I suppose the sheep were strung out for a half a mile trailing behind me.  Such a sight!  They were happy to get to the pasture where there is less old grass and more of the things they like graze -- weeds, little spring flowers, clover starts, sweet peas, wild celery and onions.  Sheep go crazy for those non-grassy plants, but they'll still eat their fair share of shortgrass.  The lambs are almost as big as their mothers right now.  They're doing great.

I'm enjoying the beginnings of spring on the prairie.  More and more birds have migrated home; I have a few tulips, hyacinths, and daffodils up now around the yard, and the pastures are beginning to green up. I spotted the first golden peas which are a herald of spring.  We don't have leaves on the trees yet, but their buds are fat and splitting out so it won't be long.

Thanks for stopping by!

Wednesday, April 08, 2015

Let's go fly a kite!

 Peach & Toodles

 FirstBornSon (aka:  Daddy)  Little Boy Blue, Peach
 Flying kites way up to the moon!

Mr. Banks:
With tuppence for paper and strings
You can have your own set of wings
With your feet on the ground
You're a bird in flight
With your fist holding tight
To the string of your kite

Oh, oh, oh!
Let's go fly a kite
Up to the highest height!
Let's go fly a kite and send it soaring
Up through the atmosphere
Up where the air is clear
Oh, let's go fly a kite!

(Mary Poppins)


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