Thursday, December 30, 2010

Walking During the Holidays on the Farm: Real FarmWives of America Joint Post

Well, it's the last day of 2010.  Wa Hoo!  We will be spending it rooting on our Favorite PURDUE UNIVERSITY MEN'S BASKETBALL TEAM, then hanging out with some friends and their kids to watch the ball drop.  No wild and crazy parties, just friends and fun.

We Real FarmWives of America were asked to post about holidays on the farm.  After you are done here, click on the link above or on the top left of my sidebar to go to our Facebook page and read up on how my other farm wife bloggy friends kept themselves busy over the holidays.

Even though many of my readers have not been out to the farm for a while, our holidays were just as chaotic and crazy as most of yours, with a few little farm twists because.....

We raise these

and they like to be fed twice a day with some of this.  Click here learn more about silage.

and some of this.  Click here to see how we make these bales.

(which look like this right now!)

Oh yeah, and some of this!  Click to read about the sacrifice I made with my body to help this go up the auger! Corn Gluten!

That means someone has to be around to flip these and push that and not necessarily in the order they are numbered!  See, farming is sometimes a tricky business!

It's not a big deal.  Someone has to be on the radio or at the TV station to deliver news, and we need to be around to feed the cows.  I have been out several times, especially during the winter months, to do these chores while my Tall Guy recovered from back surgeries!  So glad this last one in January seems to be the answer to our prayers.  A farmer with a bad back is NOT a happy farmer!

Oh yeah, in order to keep our house extra warm and toasty for a fraction of LP costs, this has to also be fed a couple times a day!

It will burn wood AND corn, but with corn prices around $6.00 a bushel, it's cheaper to burn wood. Too bad we can't feed wood through the bin and auger!  DRAT!

Other than these daily chores, we have the same fun as you do doing this

and that

and some of this

 and a bit of that.

I love that we can make our own snow hills with a bit of horse power.  Tink, though, has learned that our hills are not quite as soft on her backside as other hills might be.

All under the ever-watchful eye of our incredible farm dog, Sadie.......

unless she gets wind of a rabbit!

Still Tink and Bear played their hearts out in the white stuff, and so we had to drink lots of this,

made from scratch of course, just like their grandma made for me and my brother way back in the day at the end of the Ice Age!

Yesterday, Tall Guy and Grandpa hauled eight loads of corn to Lafayette.  We are starting to move our stored grain down to Staley's for processing.  Beans are also on the move, but we just made it out on the roads Thursday because up until then then all roads have been pretty darned slick and snow covered, and those are not the best conditions for driving a loaded semi!

365 days, 24/7 farms are busy, especially those with livestock, but we make time for the important things and work some fun in when we can.  (pardon me for posting just a few more pictures!)

 Tink was an angel.
 Bear, in the stripes looking a bit deceptively angelic 
wink wink, 
sang in the choir with her other kindergarten pals.

Tall Guy will start hibernating out in the tool shed going over equipment so it is ready to go in the spring.  That's how it goes out here, but we love it, and I hope you will continue to stop by and share the fun.


See you in 2011!

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Wordless Wednesday: Walking Through a Frosty Farm

Sounds like the big thaw starts tomorrow ;-(  I kind of like this white stuff, especially when very large, deep puddles are what I am going to have to deal with along with fog!

Monday, December 27, 2010

Walking and Selling Beef!

Got Beef?  

Need Beef?  With a hint of apple flavor?  Specially fed by elves adorable little girls?

 We have Beef!

Tall Guy is taking orders for our last group that is about market ready.  We usually call up people who regularly buy from us, but in the past two years, I have been able to drum up a bit of business via Facebook.  Who knew!?!  I think the farthest our beef has traveled is North Carolina, with its first stop in a mom and dad's freezer in Monticello, IN.

When we sell these cows, we can sell the whole cow or parts, like a half or a quarter.  Now before anyone gets their nickers in a bunch, we do not have half a cow walking around the lot.  We have to sell a whole cow, not matter what the equation: 1/2 + 1/4 +1/4.  We take our cows to one of two processing plants close by, and they do the packaging. 

Many people enjoy and feel safe knowing where their beef comes from, and we like to help those people out.  The rest of the herd is sold to market and makes its way out to consumers from the grocery stores.

Time to go grab some hamburger out of the freezer for dinner.  That's the nicest part of having our own cattle; I just have to walk to the freezer to get it!

Hope you all had a Merry Christmas!  I'm sure we all are not thinking too much about food right now, except may in the past tense, "We ate all the ham, turkey, roast beef, and caramel corn and fudge?!?!?!?!?!"  Good Grief!  Hang in there, start eating lean portions, moderation in all food, and drink your water.  We will all be back to our fighting weight in no time!

Friday, December 24, 2010

Walking in a Winter Wonderland~ Merry Christmas!

  ~We all wish you a very Merry Christmas!!!

~From our home to yours:  
May the Spirit of Christmas find you and hug your heart.

Artwork compliments of Tink and Bear.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Walking with Thoughts about Christmas

Dear Readers,

Merry Christmas!  I have been trying to catch up with all my regular blog friends and some new ones in the midst of all the holiday chaos.  Some of you are totally swept up in the merriment of Christmas, others are trying to scurry here and there to meet deadlines and family Christmases (uhm.... That would be where I fall), and some are struggling this year because of tight finances, loved ones lost this year, or illness casting a shadow on the lights of Christmas.  In that light, I would like to share a few thoughts with you about BELIEVING.

We have been watching A LOT of Christmas movies, and as I type this, Bear and Tall Guy are having a big discussion about "Is Santa real?"  Sigh... she is only newly six!  Yes, we believe in Santa around here.  Not the guy that brings you every toy in the universe, but the one who brings one special gift and, with it, the true Christmas Spirit that Bear summed up perfectly the other day, "It's not about the getting; it's about the giving."

No matter what we have or do not have, we all have the ability to give the perfect Christmas gift, the ability to hope and dream and see good in others.  That is what Santa is about, after all he was Saint Nicholas.  That puts him in pretty good company with a little baby who came to this world to teach us the same message.  I choose to believe that the twinkle in Santa's eye is that same light the three kings/wise men saw that night in Bethlehem.  It's all the same message of hope and love.

Does Macy's hold the secret of Christmas? Nope!  Neither does Starbuck's or Amazon or Zhu-Zhu pets or Nintendo or Wii.  WE (no pun intended, but that worked out pretty slick!) WE hold the secret of Christmas, and it is up to us to teach our children about hope and love and giving and BELIEVING!  We must believe in GOODNESS and LIGHT!  I do, and I hope you can see it in your world, no matter how crazy, chaotic, dark, or murky your world seems to be. 

Please take a moment in the next few days to watch a snowflake fall, embrace a child, smile at a stranger, donate to a charity or family in need.  It is not what we put under the tree that we need to emphasize, but what we give to people every day.  Give what you can to those who need what you have.  Sometimes the cost is just a simple smile or hug.  Try it!

Love and hugs!


Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Walking with the Real Ghosts of Christmas Past

Sigh....This time of year I really miss my grandparents: my mom's folks, my dad's folks, and my Grandma Phyllis and Grandpa Bill.  I have mentioned my Grandma Phyllis many times, and now I would like to tell you the rest of the story.

Phyllis and Bill were actually my aunt and uncle, my dad's oldest sister.  She was the oldest, and Dad was the youngest of the nine Lyons kids.  She and Bill were married when Dad was born.  Grandma and Grandpa were running the Hazelden Country Club for Mr. George Ade at this time, and Phyllis and Bill were farmers.  They had no children, so when Dad came along, they helped raise him when things were busy for her folks.

When I came along, Phyllis was always my "Grandma," and Bill was "Grandpa."  It was so fun to have three sets of grandparents.  They are all gone now, but at Christmas time, I can feel them with me more than ever.

Here are some pics from the early years! YIKES!  Pardon the black sides!  These are copies from slides, and I just realized I did not edit them.  Grrrrr.... It's too late to go back now.  Let's call them "vintage pictures," and enjoy them in their original color.

Back row:  Grandpa Bill, Grandpa Todd (Mom's dad), Mom
Front row: Grandma Phyllis, Me Grandma Lyons, my brother,Grandma Flossie (Mom's mom)

 My Grandma Lyons admiring my Christmas sense of style and accessorizing.

One of my favorite presents, a reversible coat with matching hat!  LOVED it!

 Back in the day, we had a real tree, and my mom put the tinsel on ONE STRAND AT A TIME.  We even got to help!

 One summer, we visited Santa at Santa Claus, Indiana.  I think this was circa 1966 or 1967.

Ho Ho Ho!  Time to get back to wrapping presents!   Hope you enjoyed this little trip back in time!  I might have to dig up a few more if I get all my other work done!

Lazy Wednesday's Walk