Friday, December 27, 2013

Christmas 2013

This Christmas wasn't what it was suppose to be at the very beginning of the month.

But it ended up being the Christmas we have dreaded ever since my Dad was declared terminal.

Our 1st Christmas without him.

A little history about us:  I love Christmas. Like LOOOOOOVE Christmas. So did my Dad. I remember when I was younger Dad would put up Christmas lights that would compete with Clark Griswold. Anything that would hold still got lights.  He loved it all, and most of all, he loved being Santa. To us. To anyone. He loved surprising people and making them smile.

And Grandmother died December 10th, 1988. I was 8 years old. And just like that, my Dad's Christmas light went off. It may have flickered on a few times, but it was never quite the same.

So...25 years later...exactly a week before the day my Grandmother Dad left us.  I'm afraid I will feel this way about Christmas forever, and that he's passed on the "curse" to me.

I don't want to NOT love Christmas. 

But this Christmas was hard. And exhausting. (This is the best word I can use to describe grief. Pure EXHAUSTION!!) And the entire goal of this season was to just make it though. I saw a quote on Pinterest that summed it up perfectly.  "It's like Christmas lights.  One single bulb goes out keeps the rest from lighting."

At times I would just panic as I saw the countdown grow closer and closer. I told Danny one day it was was like I had lost a week somewhere.  And then realized, we kind of did.
I remember sitting at the table Christmas Eve and just looking around. It LOOKED the same, but as Tristen said later: It felt like a whole bunch of people were missing.  It just felt weird. And wrong. And awkward.

Everything was just so strange. No phone calls to him first thing the morning to discuss what Santa had dropped off. No one asking if there would be cinnamon rolls made. No one saying "you better hurry up and get to bed...I heard  Santie Claus is getting close!"

We got through it. And I told myself to just let the holiday happen. If I got everything done like I normally did, super. If I didn't feel like making 100,000 batches of candy, I wasn't going to feel bad.  We ate off paper plates..WITH SNOWFLAKES!..instead of the pretty china plates...I didn't make any candy. No Christmas cookies. Most of my gifts were shoved in gift bags instead of made up pretty packages.

Christmas isn't really about any of those things, is it?

And that's what I told myself when that tiny bit of guilt or sadness started in...I didn't WANT NOR DID I have the energy to do any of those things ..therefore...I didn't NEED to do those things this year.

I did spend a lot of time on the couch curled up with my guys, watching old 80's movies. I spent some good sister time with my sister, and loved on her baby.  (Speaking of..several times I thought about our family, and what a surprise Jayden's arrival was for Michelle. certainly knew what he was doing when he sent that little boy to her. That little guy made my Dad hang on for just a few more precious weeks, and his little smile has gotten us through the hardest time of our lives. He has been passed around, loved on, cried and snotted on... Not too shabby for a brown eyed guy who can't even talk yet! What a blessing he is.)

 It's hard to be TOO sad when there is a Santa hiney bouncing around!!

"Hey! I think I'd like to try a milk shake! Tristen??... Hey, Tristen? Please?"  (BTW--look at my blonde haired kid's DARK hair!! Crazy!!

I didn't attend our favorite candlelight service, but I listened to Christmas songs that made me cry. I've cried a lot, and I've prayed even more.

We have offically survived the first Christmas without him. I know next year it will still be sad, and diffrent, and I'm told it may never be the same again. But my hope is that the sparkle will be back. Or at least some of it... Because I DO love Christmas.

Some of our highlights:

Sleeping until 8AM!!! This has NEVER happened before..we WOKE the KIDS up!!!

Jacob loves his new golf set and just needs the snow to disappear so he can try those puppies out!

Tristen got exactly what he asked for. Socks. Lots and lots of socks. He seriously asked for socks. Before anyone starts feeling sorry for the poor sock deprived kid, he had plenty of socks before.  The guy loves socks and having tons and tons of them just makes him happy. Socks for everyone!

Becky got a KITCHEN AID mixer from Santa, in a stunning shade of Santa RED! And a Duck Dynasty cookbook from her husband that made her scratch her head a little bit..That makes 4 DD books received as gifts this year at our house!  But I sure am enjoying looking around and seeing everyone laying around reading.

Interestingly enough, Danny's favorite gift is a meat grinder attachment he received for MY MIXER. Funny, huh??  Oh that Santa has a sense of humor...
For Christmas lunch we had peppered turkey breast..THANKS, FFA!...homemade mashed potatoes that my family declared THE BEST because of the new mixer. I explained while the MIXER MAY HAVE WHIPPED them better, I ADDED the INGREDIENTS TO the mixer..therefore I STILL get credit for the mashed potatoes =P, homemade rolls and cream cheese corn.

Something new I did this year for my DC kids was an Elf on the Shelf. We named him Mistletoe Max, and as funny as it sounds, I will forever be thankful for that creepy little Elf.  He made his grand entrance the morning  that my Dad passed away, so he sat on my table for over a week. BUT--he gave me something festive to focus on, and its really hard NOT be have some sort of Christmas spirit while watching eyes light up at spotting him or squeals of delight when he brought treats.  I had so much stinking fun with him!

He TP'ed our tree,

Hung out with us a little,

Got caught fishing in our fish tank,

And sent us a message about what the season was REALLY about!

We did have to work really hard at teaching my mom his name though.  My brother picked him up off the table and asked "WHAT is THIS?"  Mom replied "Oh, thats Becky's ELF, MAGIC MIKE."

I really thought I might wet my pants from laughing and BEGGED her to learn correct name before telling anyone about him.

I hope you and your family had a VERY MERRY CHRISTMAS!!!! 

"It came without ribbons.  It came without tags. It came without packages, boxes, or bags. Maybe Christmas doesn't come from a store. Maybe Christmas means a little bit more."


Monday, December 9, 2013


This post will be random. I have so many thoughts swirling around my head, sometimes its feels as though I'm losing my mind. I just want to write. and write.and write. So this may sound a bit like a drunk, blubbering, idiot, and I won't feel bad at all if everyone just needs to skip this post.

I'm not exactly sure how to explain to someone who hasn't lost a parent what its like, but this sadness, it is like nothing I have ever experienced.  Right now I'm taking  in a lot of comfort in those around me who HAVE gone through this and tell me it DOES get better. I'm holding them to it!

Though my dad's death wasn't unexpected, I'm not really sure you are really EVER ready. We had prepared and talked about it many times. He had been on Hospice for 4 years. How many people can say that?

 I have heard stories about people on Hospice passing away, and how it takes the Hospice workers sometimes a long time to get to the house, because of distance. They are the ones who pronounce the death. I always thought how hard and creepy for the families that would be to have to sit with a body of someone they love,while waiting on appropriate people to arrive.  This is not the case.  That private time we had with my dad was precious, with him in his own bed, in his own house. A lot like that time right after you've had a new baby, and its just you and your husband, quietly counting fingers and toes, and the visitors haven't started pouring in yet, though instead of joy, you feel heartbreak, and trying so hard to memorize facial features. Even after he was pronounced, they didn't make us move him until we were ready.   I feel as though we were given a huge gift and think we are incredibly lucky.


I found a funeral when you are distraught is a little like your wedding day. You know-- those things you hear about later that happened, but you don't remember them or had any clue they were going on.  That is a little what this has been like. I know there were people there,  I just don't remember seeing anyone as we walked to our seats, except my friend Lori standing and she was all I could think about getting to. I reached out my hand, and she didn't let go. It was like she was warmth and light, and I just needed to get to her.

My Dad was tucked in with a blanket that I made. There is a story to it.  It was suppose to be my dad's Christmas present, and it hadn't been started yet. I had never made a blanket before and had thought I had PLENTY of time to take my time. The day he died I decided there was no way I was looking at that fabric, that I had OBSESSED over, getting JUST the RIGHT combo for HIM, and just throwing it away or just keep moving it around forever.  So, I made a goal to start and finish it and bury him with it. With in that blanket are lots and lots of tears and prayers, and a few frantic curse words. My aunt gave me the worlds fastest "how to do binding" instructions, and I'm pretty sure everyone honestly had thought I had surely lost my mind. I gave me something to obsess and think about.  But I'm glad I did it.


My Uncles had to drive to a neighboring town to their motel to change clothes for the service. And my uncle got a speeding ticket. 84 in a 65. That folks, is a $210.00 ticket.  Is it wrong we laughed and laughed about it? The people in the fellowship hall who didn't know this story surely had to think we had lost our minds.  But I'm pretty sure there was some "Heyyyy!! Watch THIS, guys!!" going on up there in Heaven!!!! Oh..and the Kansas Highway patrol officer who issued the ticket?? He was coming TO Dad's funeral when the ticket was issued. It was hysterical, and very appropriate for the occasion. My dad would have just HE-HAWED over this, and slapped the back of that officer, while never stopping giving my uncle a hard time.


Speaking of the boys in blue, my dad was a police officer or involved with the sheriffs office  for 31 years, and was a sheriff in our little town from 1996 to 1998, when he resigned for health reasons.  He loved his work, and had requested to be buried in his uniform.  In fact, he had taken his clothes to our local funeral home 3 years ago, for safe keeping and so they would be ready. At the family meeting at the funeral home, it was brought out, and I very carefully inspected it. And my heart broke and I smiled huge...all at the same time!!..when I discovered he had stuck a PEN in the breast POCKET of his uniform shirt.

My cousin, Jesse, is a local law enforcement officer. He was very involved with my dads life, and he can immediately came when my mom called him Tuesday. I tell him he has broad shoulders, becuase he has carried my entire family this past week.  I realized at the family meeting at the funeral home, that he had a black band over his badge...signifying the death of a officer.  Tuesday, everywhere I looked I would see these black bands...even on our local fish and game officer.  And as stepped out to walk out to our seats, there was an entire section of blue in that church. And as they carried Dad out, those beautiful men were lined up, saluting.

As we went down the road that would take us to the cemetery, we were greeted with this sight. And again, I cried so hard I thought I was going to die.


This would be a salute from our local fire department. What you CAN'T see is how COLD it was, and how they stood so still, when they had to have been freezing. I was honored they would do this for my dad. They had done a flag ceremony, and done a Last Call at the church, but this was harder for me.

At the graveside, the honor guard did the 21 gun salute and TAPS was played. Remember how I said it was cold? I discovered around the time the preacher started to speak, that I could not tell if I was shaking because I was upset, or because of the cold. I just remember Danny suddenly put his arms around, and how thankful I was for his arms and warmth and I thought I couldn't  possibly stand up a minute longer.

I am tired of crying. My friend Melanie had told me that its possible to cry tears straight out your nose. She was right. Its also possible to run out of tears. Like you go through the motions of crying and ARE crying, but your eyes just can't keep up with your sadness, and just seem to give up for awhile.

I'm tired of not sleeping, and when I do sleep, I'm tired of my dreams. They are very vivid and bizarre and always wake me up. And I'm tired of waking up crying. Every stinking morning.


This feels a little like Christmas morning. You know the feeling: You've worked so hard for a month and have worked so hard and wrapped those package...and then you stand in the middle of the living room with all the mess of wrapping paper, and think wow--thats it?? Now what?


The MORAL of our this: It does not matter HOW they leave. When they are gone..there are no words to describe it. Even if you've had years and years, and many a conversations about this day. Nothing can describe it.

My dad taught me so much. More than I could ever sit here and write about. But what he did teach me most about was living. About fighting.  About dignity.  He always wanted to do things his way. And he did.

Until his very last second.

Saturday, December 7, 2013

Saying Goodbye

Tuesday morning my momma discovered that my dad had went to sleep, and had quietly passed away during the night. No pain, no struggle, just peace. He was sweetly sleeping in his bed, with his pillow bunched up, just like he likes it. If you were going to leave this earth in an ideal way, this would be it. He went to sleep all warm and cozy in his bed, and woke up next to Jesus.

My family and I have been in sort of a grief induced numb state. I had told myself I was SURE I had already gone through some the grieving process, before I had even lost him. I have since learned this is complete crap. Its just something you tell yourself.

I knew I was going to lose my dad.And I knew I would be losing him soon. There had been so many signs and changes.

But I have never felt anything like this. Raw, deep, to your core, can hardly stand up, sadness.

I kissed him today for the last time. The first guy I loved. The first guy I held hands with, danced with. The guy who ran beside me when I was learning to ride a bike. The guy who looked so handsome in a police uniform, and who cried when he gave me away on my wedding day.

The guy who fought so long and so hard. 

The guy who told me death was nothing to be afraid of, and accepted it more than I was ever comfortable with. 

I watched my husband and my 2 boys, along with 3 other amazing men, carry him out of the church.  I'm pretty sure had my best friend not been there holding my hand AND me UP,  I surely would have died too.  It is horrible to watch a casket be closed, and carried out, with your daddy inside of it. My mind can not even begin to imagine that I will never ever see him again. Or hear him laugh.

I'd like to share more about my dad, and his service, and I will soon, but for right now, just some pictures.

Dad 001
I see a lot of my Tristen in this picture.

Dad 004
My Dad with his beloved purple truck. Isn't he stylin??

 Dad with my little brother, Eric

 Dad 005
I just found this picture in a box while looking for pictures for a poster board. I had never seen it before, but I love it. He looks so young, and handsome.

Dad 003
With one of his best friends, David. Dave died about 4 years ago. I hope they are sitting at a table, drinking ice tea and strong coffee, telling "stories".

Mike Tractor- 01
Working on the tractor, annoyed with my picture taking. He was still strong and tan in this picture. I think this was around 2002.

My wedding

Again, my wedding, with my sisters flower girl head piece. No...he had not been drinking. ;)

With the grand-babies he loved so much. I am so thankful he got to meet Jayden.

My dad's youngest brother, Andy, posted this song on his Facebook page Tuesday.

"For my big brother Mike, who went home today."

I have listened to it over and over and over again.

Will post again soon!

Saturday, November 30, 2013

Thanksgiving 2013

This Thanksgiving was a bit different for us. I guess I should start out by telling you all that earlier in the week, my dad was taken to the Hospice House, so my mom could get a little help and rest, and so dad could rest while healing a leg injury (He falls a lot these days) and have extra help, and hopefully eat some good food, put on a little weight, get a little stronger, and relax.

My husbands sister, his nephew and his momma flew in from SC and Florida, so a big Bruckner Thanksgiving was in the works. I couldn't remember just how long it had been since we have had a Thanksgiving like that, but I know Tristen has never experienced one.

It was an amazing day, surrounded by beautiful people. Cousins were loud, and laughing, and fighting, though never for very long. Cell phones were stolen, and selfies...perhaps over 60 of them in some cases, were taken on stolen cell phones.  Brothers and fathers were outside, deep fat frying a turkey. Prayers were said, and hands were held. Nieces and Nephews gave out hugs, and climbed up on laps, even if only for a moment. Sister in laws sat at the table with Danny's mom, and may or may not drank an entire bottle of wine, talking about nothing, yet talking about everything. A mean game of Pictionary on the Wii was started, and a war begun.

I am incredibly thankful and grateful for the family I married into, and for the memories made.

(My heart was a bit sad, as I thought about my sister, being away from her family for the first time in her life on this day. My parents were not even home--my mom had spent the night with my dad at the Hospice House, so she didn't have to fight traffic and would be able to spend the entire day with him. I was sad they would be eating off trays, and not the grand home cooked meal. I missed them all! But I am thankful my dad still here with, my sister is only a text away, and is still close enough I can see her whenever. I have learned this past year that that is ALWAYS ALWAYS SOMETHING to be thankful for!)

Only a small part of us:


Sister in Law Stacey is in the doorway, with nieces Victoria, and Chloe. The other woman is Stacey's mom. The guy in the navy blue shirt is Tony, Danny's brother. He is married to Stacey. Danny is cutting up the ham, with the facial hair and camo hat, and Jacob and nephew Caleb are watching. The woman in the red is my mother in law,  Diane.


Making sure Uncle Danny (or Dad) cuts that ham JUST right.


Tristen and Connor. Connor belongs to Danny's sister, Sarah. One of his memories  when he grows up will surely be of his crazy aunt who loved to stick her finger in his dimples. They are HEAVENLY!


Jacob and Caleb, who belongs to Tony.  Jacob was one of the tallest people at dinner, and was a bit miffed he had to sit at the kids table! ;)

And now....NOW the tree is up,  Jacob has hung our Christmas lights outside, and its socially acceptable for me to play Christmas music.

It's my favorite time of year!!!

Friday, November 22, 2013

Running By..

..To say HI!!!

Yep! Still here!!! I only realized this morning I hadn't updated since the race post. I'd like to tell you I have a good excuse...and I do...I'm living life! ;)

In a nut shell--Boys are keeping us busy as usual. The older they get, the harder they are to keep up with! We recently had family photos taken, and I can't WAIT to share them with you all!! We are receiving the moment, which makes me nervous,as I am suppose to spend the day shopping with my sister and Jayden tomorrow.  My sister in law, nephew, and mother in law are flying in as well...this will be the first Thanksgiving in YEARS and YEARS we will be with Danny's family, and ALL of his siblings and his parents will be under the same roof!!!Many MANY THANKFULS this year, but this is high on my list!

Promise to update soon!!!!

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Who Did a 10K???

This girl!!!

And...get this!!! I didn't walk all of it!


Finished 6.2 miles with a time of 1 hour, 33 minutes, and 51 seconds.  I was booking it and feeling pretty confident and excited after seeing my time on my phone for miles 2 and 3 that I would finish around 1-15. That was before I finished  the 5K  part and split to the 10K course. It involved a huge county loop, with sand roads, and chickens, and a cattle guard you had to tip toe over, and a path through a pasture where the ground was muddy and uneven, and even a tree limb pile that was on fire. I really struggled and got slowed down quite a bit with miles 4 and 5.  HOWEVER, I got angry, did it, and completed it.  Eminem, Kid Rock, Pitbull, and Paramore can get you through some pretty tough stuff!  My initial goal was to finishing under 1-40, which I did.

Today finds me with a joke!...the size of a half dollar on the side of my foot, a hip flexor that hates feels like I have just given birth, and my butt hurts something fierce.  Through all of these aches and pains, I am still smiling.  I feel like I conquered the world.

I realized a lot about my self. I am stronger than I thought I was, and more determined than I ever imagined.

My husband is my biggest cheerleader.  I know that sounds like such a cliche, but that guy willingly stood for half an hour before the race started and then an hour and a half waiting for me, surrounded by loud music and people, some in awkwardly weird costumes, just to see me cross that line.  The 10K course started right behind where we had started the initial race. I came out of a road, and looked over, and there he was, looking the other way, down the road, looking for ME!  He was standing in front of a giant speaker, and I couldn't get his attention, but I'll never forget him searching for me and how that made me feel. He told me later he DID see me, just as I was disappearing.

My best friend, Lori, ran the half marathon. She got 1st place for the women and finished with a time of 1 hour, 50minutes, I believe.  That's over 13 miles, people!!!! She's amazing.


Funny and Random things I don't ever want to forget:

Those texts and Facebook messages I got that morning. My support system is AMAZING. 

I was the girl that was texting my husband during the race.

There was an angel on the course with me. Her name is Christina, and she had beautiful kinky curly hair.  We spent most of the 5K course passing each other, catching up, passing... On the last stretch of the 5K,  I was about to go on the second course, (and mentally starting to wonder just why I thought I could do this!!) while she was about to finish the 5K part, she looked at me and said "I know you can do this! DO IT, GIRL!" She gave me just what I needed at the exact time I needed it. I hope I see her again someday!

The guys in the pickup that honked and yelled GO #120!

The signs they had people holding on some of the corners. "Yea, we got up early for this too!" "In 2 miles, you can have a Snickers bar."  They made me laugh and gave me something else to think about.

I would have ran a lot more had I not been so worried about my pants falling down. I wore cute yoga style pants, but it had no elastic. They are hard to describe, but more just like stretchy fabric folded over on top. Super cute, and super comfortable, and horrible about not staying where they are suppose to be while you are running. NEXT time, I will wear better pants!  Every time I ran I had to try to very discreetly and cutely pull those suckers up.(By the way, I'm not complaining...having pants falling down isn't really all that bad of a problem to have! ;) )

There where chickens scratching around in the ditch on the country loop. They didn't like me and chased me a little. 

We were about to start the race and I saw someone we knew. Tanner is from our town, graduated last year, and was our 4-H club president. He was running the race for his final in a cardio class. (I would have so flunked!)  Anyway, Danny got to watch him cross the line and he got 3rd in the 5K.

I have never high-fived so many people I didn't know in my life.

It rained a soft, lovely, rain, and then an amazing rainbow appeared.

That amazing, delicious, never have I had anything so wonderful, cup of coffee I had after I was done.

The sight of those beautiful people waiting at the finish line, just for you and how good that feels!


I was going to run through the last bit, but got confused. The last bit wasn't really marked and I had it in my head I would be coming in the same direction we started so the road I was on didn't "feel" right. Instead, it ended with us coming UP the road we went DOWN when we started. Think a fish trying to go up stream. So I walked up, and was trying to act cool to see if I was going to the right way, and if not I was going to hurry and go back around. Then Lori started yelling for me and I thought it would be awkward to take off running then, so yea..a total Becky moment.  So I walked in.

I sure do love this girl!!!

 Me and Miss Maci. She calls me Becky Becky and always hugs me when she sees me.  She reminds me of sunshine. 

"Above all, challenge yourself.  You may well surprise yourself at what strengths you have, what you can accomplish. ~ Cecile M Springer

Monday, October 14, 2013


During this weight loss journey I have tried really hard not to be dominated by the scale.  Some weeks it moved quite a bit, other times it only moved down once or twice a month.  I've decided it doesn't really matter, as long as I am doing my part to move my butt and to eat the right foods, it all is ok.

I plateaued at 35 lbs. I stayed within 2 lbs, up or down, for 2 months. 2 MONTHS!!!!  I tried to keep the attitude that it was great practice for maintaining.  Recently, I just got really mad, and decided to just beat the living snot out of those 5 lbs so I could hit the 40lb mark.

And, as of this morning, I have lost: 40 POUNDS!! 

40 lbs. At the beginning this seemed so far away, and I still can't believe I've done it!

I recently joined a FB page, and  am in love with a blog called ONE FIT WIDOW. She talks a lot about non-scale victories.  So, for my 40lbs loss, I thought I would share some of my victories.

1. My cheerleader and walking partner, Amy, and I have shaved 5 minutes off of our walking time since we have started walking together.

2. That black butterfly print dress that has haunted me, hanging up in the closet..the one that I couldn't WAIT to wear again someday. I finally got up enough nerve to try it on again, and it now looks like a maternity dress. 

3. My calves have definition. Holy Moly, there's a muscle in there!

4. The feeling of pure satisfaction first time I was out helping Danny do something and "Can you get it?..oh, well, never mind then."

5. The first time I climbed over a gate and jumped, landed, and ran, without even thinking about it. A year ago, I would have opened the gate to walk through and certainly would not have ran.

6. July 25th I did a 5K. And I finished it. No really...I have pictures:

           Amy and I after! =)


7. I signed up for 10K for October 23rd and am very pumped about it! I REALLY wanted to do it, but was scared and a bit anxious about it, which told me I NEEDED to do it, so, I AM!

8. Wearing out a pair of tennis shoes. Not like "oh I think I should get some new shoes" type of wearing out, like "no tread left on the bottom, you pretty much are not even wearing shoes" type of wearing out. I've never worn out a pair of tennis shoes like this before, and I wish they could tell me how many miles I logged in those bad boys.

9. No soda since December 12th.

10. For the first time in my 34 years of life, I am doing this RIGHT.

Stay with me..this story is far from over! Bring on the next 40!!! 

Monday, September 30, 2013

Birthday Blessings

Last night we celebrated my dad's 56 birthday. I had called him to come in and "eat birthday cake" with us, but we really had planned a pizza party and cinnamon rolls, complete with a surprise visit from my sister, Tarquin, and Baby Jayden.

 We are loud. And rambunctious. And some of us make inappropriate body noises while trying to take pictures. Some of us whine about pictures. Some of us don't know how to work cameras.  But together...we are US.


Everything is better with a birthday candle!!

My parents and their GRAND-blessings

Sometimes it takes us a few tries to get a decent picture:



But eventually we get something decent!


My siblings and our children, with my dad. This picture makes me laugh every stinking time I look at it. We did get a good picture, but I love this one. 

And here is the whole lot, minus my mom, who was taking the picture.


Thursday, September 5, 2013

Little Baby Jayden

Our hearts are overflowing with joy this week! Tuesday my sister brought a 7lb 7oz, 20 1/2 inch long, ADORABLE little guy into the world.

 Michelle brought Jayden Michael into this world at 9:00pm, with my mom and Tarquin by her side, and the aunties and other family waiting patiently in the hallway, SHUSHING ANYONE who was making too much noise and causing us not to be able to hear what was going on behind that door! All I had been was excited. I hadn't really thought about watching her be in the pain. That part was hard for me and I'm pretty sure she needs a superwoman cape!  I think she's amazing.


She had a really long and very slow labor. Her Dr said she sure wouldn't have won any races, but she got the job done anyway.


The hospital and her dr were amazing. She wasn't strapped to a monitor. She was free to move around and eat as she needed. Her Dr came in at times between his patients, just to feel her belly and to see how we were all doing.  I asked him how many babies he had delivered and he told me that after 3,000 he had lost track.  He was the perfect cross of the dr that delivered Tristen, and an old beloved dr we had here in town for years and years and we immediately felt at ease and trusted him. And I KNOW NOW why my sister chose to deliver there.


He's beautiful and perfect and tiny and smells like Heaven. I always forget what an absolute miracle  new babies are. And the fact that a human body can grow and then bring a new life into the world is just..well, a miracle! The entire thing is a miracle.


Sunday, August 25, 2013


Does anyone read my blog anymore? It seems I've become a lazy blogger, but I swear I've been busy!

So school started, and all the craziness that comes with that. But that first day, as I was sad to see them go out the door, I had more done an hour later than had done all summer. Not really, but it sure felt like it!

I have a sophomore. Gulp. Almost half way though high school now.  Jacob decided NOT to play football this year.  Lots and lots of reasons why. I have mixed feelings. The football mom in me is sad, but JACOB'S MOM is happy. Happy he took a turn from the crowd and what you are "suppose" to do, proud he is thinking for himself and stuck with his decision. It will be diffrent this season, but I sure won't miss eating walking taco's 3 times a week! Work, 4-H, Youth Group, and gearing up for hunting season and trapping are all keeping him plenty busy.

I also have an 8th grader, who is in full swing football  mode. He's loving being an 8th grader and so far seems to love school...would probably love it more if his mother would get off his back about reading and getting a head on his accelerated reading goal.

I've been busy! I took a sanity summer and only watched a handful of kids. I'm now full again, and running my hind end off.  My container garden is still going strong. The banana peppers and green peppers are constant, as are the okra.  I got some tomatoes and then they just stopped, but after our beautiful rains we have gotten, they have started setting TONS of fruit again. They are not very big..they all seem to be around golf ball size at the moment, but that is just fine! I have plans to at least double what I have this year! I've enjoyed this way of gardening SO much!


My tomatoes are as tall as the fence but have laid over since all the rain. I need to get out there and tie them up.
Friday I had the pleasure..HA..of having a cyst removed from my scalp. I had been putting it off for a long time, but it had gotten so big that it was just time!  None of my big strong men would go with me. So, I did what any 34 year old anxiety ridden girl does...I called my mom! ;)  She went with me, held my hand, and didn't even complain THAT much when I squeezed her hand REALLY tight.  The worst part about the entire thing was the shots they give you to numb the area. I could tell when he was cutting, and could tell when he was putting my stitches in, but no pain. 5 stitches later, my ogre bump is gone and my head is round again! YEY!

Michelle is exactly one week from her due date. I'm sure she's feeling like a watched pot at this point, but man oh man I can't wait to meet this little boy! She came to visit Monday, and during one of our sisterly chats over the dining room table I just stared at her and smiled.  How can you tell someone exactly how much their life is about to change. How much joy this little boy will bring her. How you can love a little tiny wrinkled person SO much. Please continue to pray for a safe and easy delivery for her!

Thanks for checking in on us!! I have quite a few projects I've been working on the past month so..stayed tuned for that post!!

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

July is almost over??

Well, HELLO! Remember me? I used to blog here.

BUSY BUSY has been what I've been. Thought I'd jump in and update everyone about what we have been up to!

We just wrapped up our county fair, which for us, as 4-Hers, parents of 4-Hers, Fair board and extension board member, means we run our tails off!  We were pleased with our chicken helper we had for dinner last night...because we sat down and ate as a family, and it wasn't not take out, pizza, or concession stand food.

Tristen baked 6 food items. 3 cakes: German Chocolate, Citrus cake with key lime frosting, and German Apple Bundt cake,  cherry pie bars,  homemade Twix cookies with homemade dulce de leche, and homemade peanut butter cups.  He received blues on all of them, received champion for level 2 foods on his German Chocolate cake and was THRILLED to auction it off at the livestock auction.


For his woodworking project, after he complained he couldn't think of ANYTHING to make, I mentioned "a cute little picnic table would be nice".  The results were THIS:


It would not fit inside the school and had to be judged outside. He was THRILLED to receive Reserve Champion on it, and I AM THRILLED to have this beautiful thing in my yard now!

For rabbits, he took several Dutch, and received Reserve for his sr black doe, Rocky. (Now to just get her bred! He's tried 5 times, and just can't get her to take.)  He got Champion for showmanship and received a duffel bag for his efforts at the trophy presentation.

And in Beef, he had a hard year when his steer project keeled over dead a few weeks after he got him. He had planned to take one of our heifers in his place, but we could never get her gentled down enough to be safe, so all he took was Black Out and Burn Out, as a cow/calf pair.  He was beaten by his brother, but got the reserve!


Jacob learned this year sometimes you can't do everything, and I think it was a great I think his mom needs to learn at times too.  He didn't get his wood working project done, and his pictures just didn't go great this year. He did end up with a state fair blue and a blue though for some!

He took 2 rabbits and 2 market rabbits, and was awarded the GC rabbit with a broken havana buck and his market rabbits got some excellent comments from the judge. He is a rabbit breeder as well as a rabbit judge, and he asked Jacob if he would be interested in butchering some of HIS rabbits for him. Was a nice compliment from someone Jacob looks up to!

For his beef project Jacob took a hereford steer as well as his hereford Charlie and her calf as a cow/calf pair. He was awarded the GC Hereford award, and received a cash prize. Charlie won GC cow/calf pair, so then was included for the consideration for the grand champion breeding heifer.  We were surprised when she got RESERVE! Not bad for a fat lady nursing a kid! ;) (BTW--this photo below is why WE LOVE Herefords!)





This next story might make some of you cringe, but its a good part of the fair and I wanted to share.  We had asked several friends if they would help us cut the calves the night they were to leave,  since it was just those two and  everyone was already there.  T changed his mind about his at the last minute, so all that had to be done was one bull calf. They are bigger than they probably should have been, because the boys had been  told to leave them intact for the cow/calf judging.  Long story short, the "its just one little calf" turned into an injury on one of the guys, and it taking several men to get the calf down.  One of the guys (The one that was suppose to do the cutting. )  looked at Jacob as he was helping hold down the calf, and said "Cut him, Jacob! YOU are going to have to do it." and tossed him the scalpel.  Jacob hesitated only for a moment, and under the guidance of several cowboys, including his school principle, he got the job done and then gave all the shots too.  I was really proud of him!!  And I now have "parts" frozen in my freezer, just waiting to be fried up and him..not me.   BTW--this calf, held a grudge and escaped a panel and a grown cowboy who was guarding the corner of the panel while being loaded up on the trailer, and almost took a jog to our local fair dance before he turned around and ran back to the beef barn. We can never do things the easy way.


(One of our favorite cowboys teaching Jacob how to "clean" "them". ;) )

The day after the fair ended I helped host a baby shower for my sister, Michelle, who is expecting a little boy very soon.  I've had visions of what this time would be like, and except for being so SO tired from the fair, it was perfect and a lot of fun to plan for!



 Such a bad picture, but I love it!


Michelle and Dad to be, Tarquin.

I'm so excited to meet this very loved little guy!

Thanks for checking in on us!! Hope to get settled down a bit and start blogging more! I sure missed it!