Friday, July 24, 2009

What'd You Do Friday Night?

Friday nights have changed drastically from my younger the city.

I cooked steaks on the grill for supper (we say supper in the country, not "dinner").  We used to go out to eat on Friday nights *sigh*.  Ahhh, the good old days.

Then we went to Walmart.  To get a new air compressor...WOO HOO!  I wore the same thing I wore to the gym.  An oversized Husker Homerun Club t-shirt and some cut-off sweats that I bought at a garage sale.  Because I've become that woman.  The one who doesn't even glance in the mirror before trapsing off to Walmart "as is."

We came straight back home without so much as a treat from Sonic. *heavy sigh*

Here's what we did next.  (Don't tell me you're not sitting on the edge of your chair.)

Neal sawed tree branches while perched on the front loader of the tractor.

And who was behind the wheel, controlling the lever to raise him up to such great heights?

HA!  ME!  I finally get my chance to drive the tractor!  Sweet.

Now that's what I call "TRUST."

And this is the look I got for goofing off with the camera instead of taking my job seriously.  Okay, okay...I gotcha honey.

So what did YOU do on Friday night?

Ratatouille Goes to the Country

The cooler weather we've been having the last few days means less pool time.  I've made sure the pump runs at least 12 hours a day, but haven't bothered to really vacuum or clean out the filters this week. 

Yesterday we reached 90 again and today it's supposed to be even warmer, so this morning I strolled out to make sure Jeff had turned on the pump and decided to empty the skimmer basket. This can sometimes be an adventure. I'm getting used to dumping dead frogs, crickets, locusts, etc., and even the occasional LIVE frog and the rare "little" snake.  But I was not prepared for the intruder I would find.

What the what?!?!  A very LARGE mouse...dare I say "rat" was sitting on the edge of my skimmer.  I ran inside the house--partly because I needed my camera, but mostly because I just had the urge to run. When I came back, the critter scooted out of camera range, but revealed a smaller dead mouse swirling in the basket.

I went around to the side of the pool to get a picture of the "mother" who I thought would be perched on the edge, but she was GONE.

Did you know mice could swim?

But then maybe this is not a mouse.  Of course RATS can swim...hence the term "sewer rats."

Does this look like a rat?

Swim for your life buddy, cause you are dead meat!

Well, maybe I'm all talk and no action, 'cause I didn't actually kill it...I mean, what am I gonna do, fish it out with my bare hands and wring it's neck? Instead I got my grass net and with one motion scooped it up and flung it far away over the fence.  Pleeeeeease Mrs. Rat, don't come back looking for your dead baby!

Monday, July 20, 2009

What's Wrong with this Picture?


Here's a hint.  Check out the hanging baskets.

These babies are not only hanging from the cross beam...they're hanging on for dear life. 

This beauty, on the other hand, is thriving in the crack between the porch and sidewalk....

My green thumb has been nurturing the hanging baskets all summer, resulting in sparse green and brown sprigs, while a seedling dropped from LAST YEAR's basket receives no attention from me...not even water.  I give up.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

How Is This Possible?



Jacob will be FIVE years old tomorrow. It doesn't seem possible. A few days ago, I sat down with him to ask him a few questions.  Sort of a record of his thinking process at the age of five. Jacob is NOT a man of few words. Most of the questions required a long dissertation and I had to interrupt him to get on with the next questions.  Then he began suggesting questions for me to ask him! So here goes.

Nana:  Who is your best friend?
Jacob:  Ummmm...Nana?  (good answer)
N:  What do you want for your birthday?
J:  I want a pirate ship so I can put all my pirate stuff in.
N:  What's your favorite food?
J:  Maybe broccoli--it makes me strong and healthy.
N:  What do you NOT like to eat?
J: the hair on it's head. 
N:  What's your favorite thing to do at school?
J:  Learn and play with toys.
N:  How high can you count?
J:  About 30 feet high.
N:  What do you want to be when you grow up?
J:  I'd like to be a daddy like my daddy so I can have a sharp knife--but they're not for play.
N:  If you could do anything you want today, what would it be?
J:  Play with Husker and Sissy and Momma and Daddy on the trampoline and Piercen and Baylor with the toys.
N:  If you could have any animal for a pet, what would it be?
J:  A baby sheep--that my dog couldn't tear his hair off cause he would be naked and he would be pink and a kangaroo with a baby in his pouch.
N:  What's your favorite sport?
J:  Soccer and baseball and hockey and the olympics.
N:  Who do you think you're going to marry?
J:  I don't marry anyone--I'm just a kid.
N:  Does anything scare you?
J:  No.  Not gooey monsters cause I can get the hair spray and spray 'em and they'll melt down.
N:  What is your favorite toy?
J:  Power Ranger swords.
N:  Do you want more sisters and brothers or just Sissy?
J:  I want more bruvers and sisters, cause when Sissy grows up and is a girl, then I will have a bruver and we will call him Deer Hunter.

Now for your viewing pleasure....a glimpse into Jacob's first five years:

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Summer Days

One hundred degree weather calls for a swim party, don't you think?

Jacob wasn't about to wear floaties in front of the big kids, yesterday.  He swam like a fish all day and had the most fun.  The girls were mermaids and the boys were pirates.  Jack has "big brother" ingrained in him.  When Jacob would swim out to the middle of the pool, Jack always seemed to be there to buoy him up.  Thanks, Jack.

Lauren even took her floaties off briefly.  She jumped off the step into my arms, and a couple of times I "accidentally" let her go under water.  So she started counting,'t let me go under....go!

Jacob LOVED all his new friends which was of great concern to Jennah, until Jessica assured her that he loved her "as a friend."  At least for now, Jennah, 'cause if I have anything to say about it, I will someday tearfully watch you walk down the aisle to become Mrs. Jacob Blevins. 

Thursday, July 09, 2009


I spent Wednesday with my grandson.  Although Jacob is getting better about not needing my undivided attention every second of our time together, he can still be quite demanding. So my brilliant idea was to let him help me with the chores, one of which was to Swiffer the floors. Since the weather was colder than expected, and he came in flip flops, we had to resort to a pair of my socks to keep his feet warm.  

He probably picked up more dust with the socks than the Swiffer, but whatever, my floors look shiny, right?

A lot of time was spent in our fort, which ended up full of army men and weapons made from Tinker Toys and a Sponge Bob lunch box full of ammo.

I'm working on cutting back on my caffeine intake, so by mid-afternoon, I REALLY needed a nap.  I suggested we lay in the fort and watch TV eyelids were getting very heavy. And just as a reminder that you have to stay on your toes with kids and not get caught sleeping, Jacob began "smoking" one of the Tinker Toys.

I had to chuckle, and the more I did, the more he hammed it up.  Then he leaned back on one elbow and said, (in classic Joey Tribbiani style) "How you doin'?"

Oh boy, Jeremy and Trista are gonna have their hands full with this one.

Monday, July 06, 2009

Decisions, decisions.....

Last night, we finished hanging two of our umpteen gates.  Neal not only ingeniously designed the hinges, but also welded them together and then onto the fence posts.  And I helped.  Notice the obvious absence of photos of me in a welding hood.  Mostly I just held some do-hickies steady while he did the fun stuff.  I also lent my scrutinizing eyes to the "levelness" of the gate before each weld.

But after finishing, much to Neal's chagrin, I questioned our color scheme.  (He sure does roll his eyes a lot these days.)  As you can see, we hung the white gate next to the red barn.... 

And the red gate is in the middle of the white fence...

Before you chime in with your expert decorating opinion, I must inform you that the fence next to the barn will eventually be painted white.
And don't miss the subtle resemblance of the red gate to the shingles and door of the house...

Now you are free to give me your comments.

Sunday, July 05, 2009

It's a beautiful thing....

Those of you who can't get enough of me through my blog and follow my facebook--sorry, I don't twitter (yet) even though there are thousands of inquiring minds who would love nothing more than to get an hourly update on every riveting detail of my exciting life--will understand the significance of these photos.

A finished fence is a beautiful thing.

That's right, our 4th of July weekend was spent completing the fence that separates our north and south pastures from the highway. 

So, our marriage has survived yet another challenging project. But not without a few bumps along the way.  Like the day I insisted we speak only Spanish while working in the south pasture.  We were leaving soon for Mexico and it seemed like a good time to practice. Neal wasn't enthused about the rules, but after much "eye-rolling" he saw that I wasn't giving in and reluctantly went with the flow. Another "bump" came this weekend when I was taking a tiny break, leaning my forehead against the top rail, when he decided to throw his 45 pound fence stretcher over the rail, slightly misjudging the clearance and causing my head to bounce multiple times against the metal rail.  At least, I think it was a misjudgment.  I've had a headache ever since.

Now, repairing and replacing just a few million feet of barbed wire is all that stands in the way of us finally putting a few calves out to graze.  Maybe next Spring????  That should really be interesting...since we know absolutely nothing about raising cattle.  Stay tuned....