Sunday, December 30, 2012

Mr Tough Guy

My hubs isn't what you would call a baby person. It's not that he DISLIKES them. He is just more comfortable with them when he's convinced they won't break...and when they are potty trained and don't smell bad. ;) 

This weekend,while watching my nieces for a few hours, I had to run to some errands.  Emily was playing happily in the Bumbo, so Dan said he would keep an eye on her. Not too long after I left, Danny said Emily was getting pretty floppy in the seat, so he picked her up and...

.. this is exactly how they stayed until Emily woke up. =)

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Christmas 2012

The anticipation is over. The packages have all been ripped open, the big man in red made a stop, and we ate WAY too much!

White Christmas!! The snow was lovely for Christmas, and we were thankful for the moisture, but man oh man the wind was brutal.
Christmas Eve is very special for my family.  Since the year my parents were married, and had to divide holiday time among their families, they had Christmas Eve dinner with my grandmother, my momma's mom. It was ALWAYS with her. We would eat dinner and then we opened up our packages from her. She has passed away, but that tradition was handed down to ME, and I love it.
We always go to the Christmas Eve candlelight service at a  teeny tiny beautiful little church a few miles away. This year, we left Danny at home, half passed out, half hanging off the couch. Who gets sick on Christmas Eve?? A sore throat, bad headache, and probably a high fever, but he refused to let me take his temperature. T has been sick too, for over a week now, but all that is left of his is a nasty, 3 pack a day smoker sounding cough. It is now better, but I was dosing up Nyquil like a bartender passing out shots for the 2 of them.  Sick and Christmas should just never go together.

After church, I send out a massive text message, telling everyone we are leaving, and everyone heads to the house, where we feast. My sister was VERY concerned about Danny, when he didn't take part in their "how many plates are you on?" contest. He was sick sick SICK, and didn't even get a plate of food down.

At 1:15am, Santa arrived.  At 2, I decided I couldn't sleep, and headed down to take a hot bath. Weird and random, I know, but any time I am sick, or can't sleep, I obsessively bathe.  (T is the same way.  One day last week, during the peak of the sickness, he took a bath 5 times before I told him his poor skin probably couldn't stand another one. We understand each other when the rest of our family thinks we are a bit kooky. hehe)  Anyway, there was already a kid passed out on the couch, Santa gift already inspected.

 Jacob was thrilled to FINALLY have his own hunting rifle.  His parents were thrilled to finally have the gift successfully delivered, after issue after issue with finding what we wanted. We finally found a dealer in a neighboring town that had *1* of what we wanted,  left in stock.   By the way...did you know you can't find bullets in stock right now? Every time we would ask, we were met with the same "good luck" with a chuckle that I started to compare to fingernails on a chalk board.   My sister in law finally found a box on her way to her parents, with the price 2 times higher than what they should be.

Tristen is in L.O.V.E with an electric drum set he got and hasn't left his room much. Did I mention it uses ear buds?? Oh yes...the drummer moms dream come TRUE!!  I must admit this contraption is very slick, and does some really neat things. He also was thrilled with some origami paper, light up drum sticks, and a Duck Dynasty hoodie.  I had looked for Duck Dynasty stuff in Wichita, thinking as popular as it is, it would be pretty easy to find something. It wasn't. I finally found this hoodie in Tractor Supply of all places, in Dodge City.  It made Tristen Happy, Happy, Happy!

Tristen has already made several very cool things with his paper, including these sailboats.
I was shocked when I opened a gift from my parents. They bought me a new camera.  The funny part is is that it is the same camera I have had for the past 3 years, just a step up and newer model, so I don't have to spend months figuring it out. It has a bigger screen, and a few new features, but is works all the same.  My old camera was quickly checking out, with parts of the case falling off, the zoom lens cover literally fell off in my purse one day, (The tube part that comes out when you zoom in. Not the lens cap cover.)  and the battery compartment is broken and held together with duct tape. Though cuter, zebra print duct tape doesn't really make something seem any less redneck. HA! So maybe there will be more pictures on my blog now.

This year I gave several homemade gifts.   I filled a canning jar with nail polishes, polish remover, files, covered the lid in cute fabric and added some ric-rac around the band and gave to some of my favorite girls. They turned out really cute! I also made crayon rolls for my little nieces and nephews. I am teaching my self to sew on a sewing machine..very slowly!!..but I discovered there is something so relaxing about the hum of a sewing machine. It became one of my favorite things to do. I'd sneak upstairs, turn on the Christmas music on the TV, add my favorite scent in my Scentsy warmer, and just sew.  They turned out adorable.

Crayon rolls! =)  I also made on for my nephew, Connor, but his was dinosaurs and red fabrics.

The strangest gift we gave this year.

Tristen and I cut out a TON of sugar cookies Sunday night. This is something HE wanted to do this year.  They turned out YUMMY!

This Christmas felt different, so many different reasons, but I guess some years are just going to be like that. It doesn't make them any less special, or take away from what Christmas is about.  Sometimes, you just go with it.

This is an envelope sent from my mother in law. It  was slit open, and 3 out of 4 cards she put in are missing.

I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas! 364 more days until we get to do it all again! =)

Friday, December 21, 2012

Just About Ready

MOST of the gifts are bought. MOST are wrapped and put under the tree.

I usually send out a massive amounts of Christmas cards. I got my family ones sent out, and decided this morning I am not going to worry about the other ones. Missing one year doesn't make a Christmas failure, right?

The USP truck has dropped off everything it was suppose to. Danny and I will be making one quick trip out of town to get the last few things we need. Nothing like waiting until the last minute, huh?

Its strange. I HAVE the Christmas spirit, just not the ambition to do the things I always FEEL like I NEED to do. I can't decide if this is GOOD? Or BAD?

I do have a few gifts I can't WAIT to tell you about! ;)

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Mom and Dad's Day Out

Monday, after we got a kid on the bus, and made sure the other up and awake, we ran to our car to hit the road. Like really...we probably looked like we had just robbed a bank and landed in our get-a-way car. I'm sure the black burn out marks in the driveway will fade pretty fast...

We headed to the city to do some Christmas shopping, but we had few errands to run first.

This first part may cause me to lose some readers, but we stopped at  Tanganyika Wildlife Park.  You see, Tristen has a pet corn snake, and if you know anything about snakes, you know they are not vegetarians.  I was grossed completely out at having to BUY dead frozen mice, until we had the idea of using baby rabbits. (Baby bunnies are MUCH better than dead mice, right??) Now,  before you all start crying and running away, these babies are ones that were born dead, got out of the nest and died, things like that. ALL natural deaths and they would have other wise just been disposed of.  Tristen's snake thinks they are the best thing ever, I am happy I no longer have to buy icky mice, and they are free.  However, after a recent inventory, Tristen discovered we had over 40 of them from the last 2 breeding seasons,  which was way more than Slytherin would eat in a year. So, we called Tanganyika and they were THRILLED to take them off our hands.  Tristen did want me to ask what they would be feeding with them, and the zookeeper was  more than happy to chat with us and told us they would be feeding what we brought to the snakes and some of the leopards. T thought it was really cool that something born here would be feeding something at a zoo he has gone on field trips to!

*I realize this is a very sensitive subject, but the truth is is that animals need to eat. Not all of them eat food that comes from a cute little bag from the grocery store.*

The next thing we had to do was hard. We went to visit Jamie's grave. I had not been back since the funeral. I have been to the area several times, but always found a way to talk my self out of going, for what ever reason. My husband knew exactly what was going on, and he wasn't going to let me keep doing it. I was scared to go, have been missing her fiercely, and going there, well, it really does mean shes gone.  Knowing he would be with me helped a lot, and I made up some Christmas things to take out there.  It WAS sad, but I felt so much better after going. Danny let me do my thing, which involved a few tears, and pointed out how beautiful it looked. Her family had mulched and planted things that were just so very Jamie.  Sad, yet pretty and peaceful.

While we were pulling into the cemetery, a HORRIBLE noise starting coming from under the hood of our car. Dan and I just looked at each other with our mouths hanging open, and I believe a few explicit words came flying out of his. We had come to Christmas shop and hadn't even started yet.  We couldn't decide if we should just throw in the towel and head home or try our luck. We decided to go the places we didn't have access to close to home and then head home so if we DID have to have someone come and get us, it wouldn't be in the dark. 
Long story short, we didn't get ALL our shopping done, but got the things we needed too, and the car was acting fine, just sounded horrible at times,  and we made it home.  Danny thinks its some sort of belt. So we DO have to go out of town again this weekend, but just for a few things.

AND..while we were in the big city, I talked Danny into eating at Chipotle for lunch. Oh my!  It was wonderful!  I'm pretty sure I could live on just their guacamole and chips!  If you've never eaten there, you should try it!  I became interested after seeing them on Food, Inc. And then my friends started talking about it, and you KNOW if your friends are talking about it, you HAVE to try it. =) So go try it! And don't forget to get a side of chips and guac!! 

All in all, nothing went the way we thought it would be, but it was still a good day.  I refused to let anything ruin our Christmas spirit, and we laughed. A lot.   We are not city people. Nor our we the best shoppers. I like shopping, and I do like looking at things and window shopping a bit, but am mostly a get what we need and move on type of shopper. My husband, well, he is a "grab the first thing that looks good, why are there so many people here, its a Monday, don't these people WORK?" type of shopper.   In fact he had me laughing so hard in Bath and Body.  "I feel like a nun in a strip club...I don't know where to look."  HAHA! I looked over and his eyes are bugging out of his head, while trying to be patient and follow me around while I lovingly sniffed and admired all the little bottles of sensory heaven.  He also got to experience Hollister.  We both agreed that while we don't ever feel old very often, THAT store makes us feel ancient! 

I'm going to close this post with a recipe! A RECIPE! I NEVER share recipes, so you all know it HAS to be good if I thought it was good enough to share!  My guys love eggnog, and we can devour a cheesecake like a pack of hungry lions, so when I stumbled across this recipe on Pinterest, I KNEW I had to make it! I did double this, because a 9inch pan of ANYTHING at this house is a joke.  The only variation I did was I only added half the brandy. Because my kids would be eating it, and I really just don't like it, but my hubs thought it needed SOME in it!

 Eggnog Cheesecake Bars

Serves 18
  • Vegetable oil cooking spray, for pan
  • 12 graham crackers, finely ground (1 1/2 cups)
  • 3/4 cup plus 3 tablespoons sugar
  • 2 ounces (4 tablespoons) unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 pound cream cheese, room temperature
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 large egg yolk
  • 3/4 cup eggnog
  • 1 tablespoon plus 1 1/2 teaspoons all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon brandy
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg, plus more for dusting
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Coat a 9-inch square baking pan with cooking spray. Stir together graham crackers, 3 tablespoons sugar, and the melted butter. Press into bottom of pan. Bake until crust is just brown around the edges, 12 to 15 minutes. Let cool.
  2. Meanwhile, beat cream cheese with a mixer on medium speed until fluffy, about 2 minutes. Add the remaining 3/4 cup sugar, the eggs, yolk, eggnog, flour, brandy, vanilla, nutmeg, and salt; beat until smooth. Pour filling over crust. Set pan in a roasting pan, and add enough hot water to come halfway up sides of baking pan. Bake until just set, 40 to 45 minutes. Remove baking pan from water bath, and transfer to a wire rack. Let cool slightly, about 30 minutes. Refrigerate for at least 3 hours or overnight.
  3. Cut into 1 1/2-by-3-inch bars. Lightly dust tops of bars with freshly grated nutmeg just before serving.


Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Spring in December?

This warm  December feels more like springtime,  but I think things are about to change come this weekend.

Our bunnies are agreeing, and this week has found us with litter after litter.  It is very strange for us to have litters this far into the season, and we are thankful!  Some of these cuties will be our spring show animals, and we NEVER have anything decent to show early in show season. Rabbits don't like breeding into fall/winter, since out in the wild, babies born in the cold will usually not survive, so when the sunlight decreases, they usually will shut down. Tristen is still waiting on 2 does, but so far as litters of 5, 6, 7, and 8. I'm REALLY hoping the pattern doesn't continue to go upwards. ;)
Jacob had 2 litters we are excited about. One is sired by his BOB ARBA National buck to a doe he bought from Julie Spier, who was Best Chocolate at Havana Nationals last year. Her name is Double Dip. =) She had 7 fat and sassy babies and seems to be an old pro at the parenting thing.  Should be a cute litter.
He's also had some disappointment and drama.  He's had a first time mom dump litters on the wire and not want anything to do with them after they were put into a box.   A first time Californian drop *11* babies in her box, and then lost them pretty fast for some unknown reason.  (Both these litters were born on day 29.)

After my last post, we were thankful and  blessed to find a hay source for our cows, right down the road.  It *should* last all winter, but we are still going to buy a few here and there as we find them, just in case.  I really thought we were going to to have to pack them up and take them to the sale barn, and it was breaking my heart. 

Tristen lost his 4-H steer this sometime this morning. Ugh.  He was happy and hungry at feeding time last night, and Jacob said he came over and ate this morning. My sister in law saw him down as she was heading back to work after her lunch break and Dan went right out there to check on him, but he had been gone for awhile.  We are not sure if it was bloat, or a fast acting pneumonia. The vet mentioned to a friend of ours it could have been this as they are seeing a lot of it because of the dryness of our area. 

Dad doesn't  know it yet, but I'm hoping to get to the farm this weekend to put lights up at mom and dads, and help decorate for Christmas.  My dad shocked me recently when he said he didn't think they were even going to put a tree up this year. =(  This guy used to shoot Christmas cheer from his behind when I was growing up. He WAS Santa.  His health and rapidly  failing eye sight seem to have put his Christmas light out, so I guess *I* will be the one shooting Christmas cheer..maybe it will light his back up. 

A PLUS to the holiday season: Peppermint Mocha coffee in the mornings. It's going to be a painful withdraw!
This morning I was remembering a Christmas years ago, when my uncle Andy was home. He had bought my Grandad a microwave, and he and my dad had schemed for days how they would pull off getting it over there to surprise him.   Late one night,  with my nose pressed to the window, watching,  they crept over with this little microwave and big red bow.  I had strict instructions to stay home and watch the windows upstairs, and to let them know if any lights came on. Looking back, I'm sure this was their way of making a very LOUD little girl feel like she was in on the surprise. I'll forever remember watching them creep over and how magical it felt, leaving a gift in the middle of the night.

This may be on of the most random posts I've ever done,but thats ok.  Forgive my lack of pictures too. Not only have I not been writing about our life, I haven't been taking pictures either. I even FORGOT to take it to Tristen's music program last week.

Bundle up this weekend!! Its suppose to be cold! 

Thursday, November 29, 2012


It's not even December yet, but my house is decorated..with the exception of the outside lights, which Jacob has claimed as HIS job for the past several years.  I have a new tree this year, and I couldn't WAIT to get it up. New tree+800 new white lights=Christmas tree perfection!  I also am very proud that today, my very first shipment of gifts will arrive!! Love Cyber Monday! Thanks, Amazon!

Jacob made it home safely from Denver with his youth group. I was anxious about him going, but he was full of stories, both from the excitement of going to the mountains for the first time,and working at the processing center for Operation Christmas Child, and then normal teenage boy oh-my-gosh-you-guys-didn't-really-do-that,-did-you? stories.

Last night was Tristen's band and music program.  Tristen is a band nut, though he does participate in music, band in what has his heart. Our school has a new band teacher and its so nice to see life back into the program.

Still seem to be in my blogging rut. Its not that I don't WANT to blog. It just seems be nothing worthy of blogging about at the moment.

Life in a nutshell:

A stomach virus made its way through our house the weekend after Thanksgiving.  We didn't get it too bad, but poor Tristen was sick sick sick. I always find it funny how people are affected by these things in so many different ways. 

Baby bunnies due this weekend. Some crosses the boys are very excited about. Its suppose to be very warm, so we got very lucky to be breeding this far into the season and not be too worried about cold babies.

We haven't located a decent hay source to feed our cattle yet for the winter. Scary.  We have been taking it a day at time, and so far things have worked out.  I love raising our own food...March thru October-ish. After that, its just not very much fun. :-P Things will work out, and I'll say it again:

I am happy we don't do this for living.

Monday, November 19, 2012

Thoughts of TURKEY

How is it possible its almost Thanksgiving??  My stomach still hurts from LAST Thanksgiving, I swear!! This year we will be celebrating at the farm. This is something I am not used to, as I have prepared the meal for my family for years now, so its a bit strange not being in full blown prep mode. I do get to prepare several dishes, so I am not totally lost. ;)

Today finds my sister home on break, and Jacob home sick with a sore throat.  This "thing" we are passing around needs to leave and very soon. I still sound like a 80 year old chain smoker first thing in the morning.

This past weekend found us in Wichita at our favorite double show.  Jacob's Havanas had all blown coats from being stressed at convention, so none of them placed, but he did get BOB and BOS Standard Chin.He was the only exhibitor. And he had BOS Californian  in both shows with a silly looking intermediate buck he got at nationals. I've made fun of this bunny since he bought him, so I guess I should shut my mouth now. ;)

Tristen's goal since nationals has been to do better at a show than his brother.  Not that they are competitive with each other or anything. *sigh*  .  Out of a very nice showing of Dutch in the Windy Plains show, Tristen won Best of Breed with a cute little  tort buck named Padlock.  In the other show is was SO.CLOSE. He had 4 of the 7 animals up for breed, but they went 2 others for best and best opposite. He was miffed. ;)

Torts ROCKED this show!! Tristen with Padlock, Best of Breed, and Madison and her tort doe, win Best Opposite.

Photography by Tristen.  Padlock is checking out his jar of fresh local honey he won!

Hope everyone has a wonderful week!!!  Count your BLESSINGS!!

Monday, November 12, 2012

Our Life

You-Hoo! Over here!! Yep! Still here! I seem to be on some sort of blogging hiatus. Not intentional, I assure you. I can't seem to sit down long enough to get a post done, and I refuse to feel guilty about it.

So here are some updates about us!

Tristen:  Enjoying his new steer that has arrived at the farm. He picked out a black baldy he's named Ninja.  He will also be taking a heifer that was born at the farm in March as well.  He thought having to walk ONE was bad last year..lets see what this year is like with TWO! ;) Tristens favorite project is the the beef project..yes, even over rabbits, so he's pretty much in Heaven!
 He's asked for an electric drum set for Christmas.  His mother is starting to think she should have encouraged him to play the harp.   He came home from nationals and bred a handful of Dutch does and is hoping something wonderful lands in his nest shut his brother up. ;)  He's also suddenly into Origami.  He spends hours in his room on his I-pod, watching demonstrations, and has made some really neat things..all from paper.

Jacob: Is also enjoying his new steer.  His is a Hereford named Brock.  Jacob enjoys the raising/care part of this project much more than the actual showing of the animal.  He recently got a job at our local grocery store. I was kind of against this move as I was afraid it would be one more thing to the schedule I would have to keep track of, but its been just fine. He's really enjoying it AND having his own money! He is gearing up for hunting season to start, and has a new place to try this year. He is also getting ready to go to Denver on a mission trip with his youth group.
I am at times SHOCKED at how grown up he is. 

Danny: Keeping busy at work as usual!  He just got our pigs for this season. He built a new pig pen for this year, so they can root around in more of a natural environment. This project *I* don't enjoy nearly as much as HE does, but I did forget how cute pigs are, and these girls are a lot calmer than our other ones were, so it makes it fun to go visit them. His wife has a nice long list of "honey do's" for him that will keep him very busy until Christmas. One is a Christmas present for someone very special I hope will get done so I can blog about it immediately after Christmas! =)

Me: I have been sick with a nasty cold. Saturday found me so tired I could hardly walk and I would fall asleep when ever I sat down.  After I realized the cough medicine I had been taking was PM and I let it get out of my system, I felt a TON better!  HA!  I recently bought a sewing machine from my Aunt. I am SO excited, but almost embarrassed to admit I haven't even had the time to play with it.  I have a few Christmas ideas brewing in my head, and my goal is to make THIS SEASON as stress-free and fun as possible.  I think that's my goal for every year, but I'm hopeful THIS will be the year I WILL ENJOY more, STRESS less!

I am finding myself  in a bit of a  funk and I think a lot of it has to do with the loss of my friend, Jamie. I have moments of panic where I can not BELIEVE I will never talk to her again, at least face to face, here on this earth, and lots of guilt for not being a better friend those last months or trying harder to get to her.  She's been on my mind so much, in fact, I woke up in the middle of the night a few nights ago, because I heard her laugh. Like she was right beside me and laughed in my ear.. I sat straight up in bed and was scared, excited, and then very very sad.  I had been missing her and her beautiful laugh so much, and I think some where, from deep in my memory, my mind had found a way  to "let" me hear it again. 

After this weekend, our show season will come to an end, with the exception of a 4-H show in January, until early spring.  We still can not believe our experience at nationals and I had the BEST quote EVER made by someone I just love to death.: "...who would have thought such PRIZE winners would come out of that HUMBLE little garage....kind of reminds me of a story that involves a manger and a barn...."  =)  

Bruckner's Gunner..obviously not posed, but you take what you can get. This is the awards he won at State and National convention.  Not too bad considering he's only been to 3 shows so far.

I promise I am almost done with the bun talk, but I do have a slideshow I'd like to share in the next couple of days we made of our national pictures.
Thanks for checking in on us, and I hope to be blogging more!!

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

ARBA Convention 2012

I have no words to describe our first ARBA Convention. Amazing just doesn't seem to do it justice.

First off, it was a blast to finally put faces to names you only see on pedigrees, on facebook groups, or read about in newsletters.  Jacob got to meet someone from CA who has helped his program tremendously, when he purchased a rabbit from her last convention and had someone local pick it up for him and haul it home. Julie is an amazing and fun lady!

This is PART of the youth area.  The Open had an entirely different room, with more rabbits!
To be with people, who are just as rabbit crazy as we are, for DAYS straight, was a blast!  I walked in to the convention building, smelled THAT smell of 21,600 rabbits and thought "I am NEVER leaving here!"

21,600 rabbits.

Jacob competed against 236 Havanas

Tristen competed against 327 Dutch.

This was our first convention, and we had NO expectations. We were just happy to be there at our very first ARBA convention!  We were hoping to stay in the middle of the class, and were fully prepared to have our hind ends kicked repeatedly. For all you non-rabbit people, this is the Superbowl of bunny shows. It doesn't go any higher. Think Westminster.

Tristen walked away with a 2nd place Jr tort buck, which was AMAZING.  He also had several 5th, 6th and 7th place. He has only been actively breeding since March, so he should be pretty pleased with the results! I can't WAIT to see the stuff he's got coming up this show season!

Judge Briony Barnes judging Dutch

I-Pods are a must while waiting on your next class to go to the table!

Jacob's bunnies stunned us all.  He was awarded: 1st place Blue Sr doe, Best of Variety Broken, Best Opposite Sex Varitey Broken, and Best Opposite Sex Variety Chocolate, who has a new home and will be heading to CA after convention!

A flock of Kansas Havana kids, representing their state very well!

Finally, after 9...9!!!..hours of standing around watching the Havana judging, (The judge stopped once to use to bathroom. That's it! No break. No meal.) they announced that the best of breed was....JACOB'S BROKEN BUCK!!!!!  I don't even remember what happened much after, except I started crying and ran to call my momma!! ;) 

Gunner is Jacob's BIS winner I blogged about 2 weeks ago.  Home bred, home grown, and now a national Best of Breed winner.

This meant that Jacob would be putting a rabbit up on the Best in Show table. Yikes. The entire thing felt like a dream to us.

(Melanie--they did BIS judging where Lion King was held, and it was a full house! =) )

They do BIS a little different than we were used to at regular shows. They break the rabbits up into 4 groups, and 4 judges come in, each judging their group. (Jacob was in group 3.)  And then they each pick the best rabbit from their group, announce it, and then another judge comes back in, goes over those 4, and announces the best in show.  The judge that had Gunner got him out not once, not twice, but 3 times! I can't even begin to tell you what that feels like to watch. In the end, the best of group 3 was a beautiful Tan.  It didn't even matter...we had had a bun up there! As we were going down the hallway coming out, the group 3 judge came out beside us.  Danny stopped him, shook his hand, and told him that our son had had the Havana. He informed us that Gunner had been his 2nd choice, and that he just needed to be a bit more finished over the top and he would have gotten it. He had everything else needed. =) I don't know if that makes it better, or makes it worse! HA!!

Group 3 bring in their  rabbits

Allan Ormond looking at Gunner

It is dead silent in the room. Its amazing.

Up on the big screen.

This is where my excitement started leaking out my eyes. hehe  This is him pulling Gunner out for  the 2nd time. (and the photographer.)

Best In Show Youth went the Netherland Dwarf.

The boys had to go back to school today, so we left last night.  Jacob was pretty bummed to leave the bubble of convention. Danny and I went up today to clean coops and feed and water, and...get this...take Gunner to get a professional picture taken with his awards.  Bet you didn't see that one coming, did you? Add that to the list of things I never EVER thought I'd be doing!!

Here are some various pictures I thought would be fun to share with you.

The bunnies are ready to come home.=(

There is a booth about ABRA history. So neat!

Old wooden judging tools

An old Dutch handbook! =)

Jacob and his friend, Hannah, looking over one of her brokens.

Bunny dress up contest!

It will be hard to ever top this experince, and I am pretty sure it can't be done!!

But we are sure going to have fun trying!!

Friday, October 19, 2012

10 Friday Thoughts

1. I am sick of fundraisers. Jacob has had 4 since school started.

2. My front porch looks like it could be on Hoarders. Must get that cleaned off this weekend.

3. 8 days until ARBA Convention

4. In the past week, Jacob has gotten a car and a job. When did this growing up happen and where was I?

5. I need to find a finger food for a banquet Monday night. I hate coming up with finger food. So much easier to come up with a side dish.

6. The steers for the new 4-H year will be arriving this weekend. I haven't recovered from the fair and already have new ones have arrived.

7. I sound like a whiny baby in this post, don't I?

8.  I love fall. The mornings are beautiful.

9. Tristen's last game was last week. I love football, but sure am enjoying seeing him getting off the bus after school and not having to worry about Friday practices.

10.  Our poor sweet Anna kitty got the snot beat out of her late last Friday night by a big ol tomcat. She's been limping around pretty good ever since.  =(

Hope everyone has a wonderful weekend!! 

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Wonderful Weekend

10 o'clock  Friday night, after a mist soaked football game, Jacob and I headed to Hutch to meet Tristen and Danny for Kansas State Convention.  About 15 miles in, I thought about turning around.  The fog was ridiculous and I'm not  a real confident nighttime driver anyway.  We finally got in around midnight, after a couple of pumpkin spice cappuccinos and lots of conversation and shot nerves!

A big part of the convention is the youth royality. This is a contest based on a 5 page written application, an oral interview, breed ID contest, judging contest, 200 question written test and showmanship. Those scores are tallied, and the winner is the that age group royality. There is lord/lady, prince/princess, duke/dutchess, and king/queen.

This was a weird and awkward year for our house. Tristen had been persuaded to try it, so...that meant both of my kids were competing for the same title.

When the winner was announced, Tristen didn't make it to the top 3, but Jacob was awarded runner-up Duke, and come to find out, the top 3 were only 3 points away from each other.

In showmanship, out of 15 participants in the 12 to 14 group, Tristen walked away with a 4th place plaque and Jacob was 2nd Runner up.  This was Tristens second time doing this..EVER!  He's pretty pleased with himself and has big plans to start doing more of the contests.

As far as the show went, it went just as good.  Jacob was awarded best of breed Californian, Best of Breed Standard Chin and, his most exciting, Best of Breed and Best Opposite Havana. There over 60 youth Havanas entered!!

Tristen won the Best of Breed and Best Opposite Dutch with a pair of young torts.  He was SHOCKED when judge Don Jackson announced them as the breed winners.  So shocked,  he temporarily forgot that those where HIS torts the table and turned and asked his dad "whose are those?"

Jacob's big moment came when, during the best in show judging came and they had done first and second reserve, and Judge Mike D'Amico said "And now... best in show...goes to a rabbit I fell in love with yesterday....the HAVANA."  =)  

Jacob and Judge Mike D'Amico
The broken jr buck who won this was born here in May, and is fathered by Jacob's double BIS winner in Russell. Home bred, home grown,hard work, equals a HUGE feeling of accomplishment.

After the BIS judging, the Prairie Winds Havana club had a specialty Havana show.  Jacob was awarded the Best of Breed for that show too, with a cute little black doe as well as Best Opposite Sex, with a little chocolate buck, who almost got left at home because I skipped over him on Jacob's entry list and forgot to enter him. Both of these were bred and raised by Jacob also, so between that, and the high Havana numbers, Jacob is feeling pretty pleased with the way things are going.

Our big National convention in Wichita is in less than 2 weeks...We are READY!!

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Football Moms

This was shared with me by another football mom. I love it!

In the fall, it is time for the football season.
Mothers go to the game, but for one reason.  What is the reason?
Let there be no denial.
It's to see if her son gets up from the pile!

Oh, she may have lots of pep, and do it all the cheers.
And she hasn't missed a game in many a year.
But she doesn't do it just to keep in style.
It's to see if her son gets up from the pile.

Jacob (86) and his best buddies on the FB boys homecoming float

She keeps track of the score and acts very alert.
Wondering how to get those bloodstains out of his shirt.
She always sits on her seat right on the aisle.
Just in case he doesn't get up from the pile!

When the whistle blows, she strains her eyes
For the jersey number she's memorized.
She'll sit quite still, heart stopped all the while,
Til' she sees that number get up from the pile!

She'll stand and shout, "My son stopped that play!"
"Sit down, dear, he clipped." is all Dad can say,
She may not know a punt from a telephone dial.
But she knows when her son gets up from the pile!

Tristen, 80, on the end.

Good ol' Mom, she's a dear, and your very best fan,
But you'll be her little boy even when your a man.
She makes all your games, you think with a smile,
Just to see if "her baby" gets up from the pile! 

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Smoky Hills RBA

Saturday morning found us up early and loading up rabbits at 5am to head out to Abilene. This show had been iffy for us. Jacob had a football game and wasn't home until 12:45am. We ended up going, but he slept all the there, and even took a nap in the truck in between showings.

Loading up rabbits at that hour, as funny as it sounds, is one of my favorite things.  There is an excitement in the air, the bunnies know something is going on.."They have CARRIERS OUT!"..and start begging at doors and running around their cages... Its fall, so the air is crisp and the stars are big and bright and breathtaking. The fox was behind our neighbors house, doing her "bark" and after a few wide eyed glances around, we figure she's probably out every night.

On the way to the show we passed the pink breast cancer awareness fire truck. I had seen this truck in pictures on peoples Facebook pages so it almost felt a little like a celebrity sighting. Its very cool and covered in signatures of breast cancer survivors.

Tristen took his Dutch for the first time ever. These are ones that had been born and raised in our barn and we've been itching to get them on the table.  His time and hard work, and a little frustration, paid  off!! In show A, his little black buck, Ricochet, won Best of Breed, and his little blue doe, Chanel, got the best opposite sex award.   In Show B,  Spencer, a tort buck, won Best of Breed, and Chanel took the best opposite again.


The best part of the day came at the very end. My "always along for the ride"  kid, stood around with his arms crossed watching the judge look over the BIS rabbits. I was standing next to a youth Havana breeder, chit chatting, when I saw the judge go back and pull out his Dutch. T wasn't paying attention, so I caught his eye, pointed, and suddenly his back got a little straighter and he was very interested in what was going on. ;)  He announced Ricochet has the 2nd Reserve in Show!! (3rd best rabbit at the entire show.)  Tristen got a balloon filled with cash as his prize.

Jacob had a wonderful day too! He and his friend, Maddie, dominated the Havana table. In both shows he was awarded Best of Breed with a frisky little broken doe named Fruit Loop.  Maddie won Best Opposite in both shows as well.
Fruit Loop also got a 2nd look over during the Best In Show judging, but no such luck this time!

Fruit Loop has a fun story. Her mother, Golly, was Jacob's very first Havana. She's special.  She has slowed down a little in her age, producing smaller litters,  and he had bred her this spring at least 3 times, but she hadn't taken any time. I told him that he could breed her one more time, but if she didn't take again, he would need to move her out of a brood cage to a smaller one, so that a mom that could have a litter could have hers. (Think moving from the house you've raised your kids in to a cute little retirement condo. ;) ) Anyway, he bred her and 32 days later Fruit Loop landed in her nestbox. Fruit Loop. Just Fruit Loop!  So being a singleton, she grew up fat, beautiful, and socialized, and was always loved on a little every day at feeding time!  The odds of her being THAT rabbit..well, the odds were pretty low. She's been fun to have in our barn! And Golly is still in her big cage.

We hadn't shown in 3 months, except for county fair, so we were so happy to be around our kind again.

Hope everyone has a fantastic week!