Tuesday, February 27, 2018

Love on the Farm: So God Made a Farm Dog

There are so many parts of our life on our farm that I love, but this past week I made one of the toughest decisions I've had to make in my life.  She was old, she had had an ACL tear that left her with arthritis, and after a slip on the ice and fall off the porch, she was just in too much pain, and we had to put our much loved Sadie down.   I want to share with you one part of farm life that I have always loved and that is having a Farm Dog.

Yes, I used to teach English, and yes, I know Farm Dog should not be capitalized unless it's a proper name or title. but those of us who are farmers know the importance of a good Farm Dog.  So with a nod to Paul Harvey's wonderful, "So God Made a Farmer," I'm going to tell you what happened on the Tenth Day....

So after God created this world of ours and made a Farmer and a Farmer's Wife, he realized there was still something missing.  Farming can be a solitary life.  It involves late nights and early mornings. There are long walks and even longer drives. Sometimes it's just a farmer or a farmwife out there alone. After much thought, on the 10th Day, God made a Farm Dog.

When the farmer went out early in the morning to do up his chores, rising in the wee hours of the morning to milk the cows or inspect the livestock soon to give birth while everyone else slept, God made a Farm Dog to cheerfully greet him with a smile, a wag of the tail, and faithfully go out with him and keep him company.

When the farmer's livestock escaped their pasture, God gave him a Farm Dog to help round them all back and bring the escapees back home.

When the farmer's head was filled with engine noises and thoughts of missing parts and putting them all together drawing his attention away from his surroundings, God made a Farm Dog to bark and let him know when a strange truck pulled in the lot.

When the farmer's wife needed to shoo the kids outside for a little peace and quiet, God made a Farm Dog to go with them and protect them and play with them in her place.

When the farmer's wife wanted to go for a walk down the road, God made a Farm Dog to go with her and encourage her to walk a little faster or even jog to help her stay healthy and fit. At the mear mention of going for a walk, the Farm Dog would show her excitement by jumping and spinning in circles to encourage a smile instead of a sigh from her farmwife.

When the farmer's wife and children were out picking up rocks in a field, God made a Farm Dog to watch, protect, and growl in an alert that a coyote was very near.

When the farm cats needed a furry friend to snuggle with, God made a Farm Dog to share with them the warmth of her body to shelter them from the cold.

She could also settle any fight just with her presence. When the farm kittens needed a babysitter and place to play, God made a very patient Farm Dog for them.

When the farmer sent a daughter on an errand in the Gator, God made a Farm Dog to ride with her and keep her driving at a safe speed.

When special days came around, God made a Farm Dog to help mark the time and wait for the bus.

When the trials and the frustrations of the day were just too much to bear alone, God made a Farm Dog to listen without judgment and give kisses to whoever sat down and vented to her.

So God made a Farm Dog that day, and He has made several since then; each one specially created and picked to meet the needs of each farm family.  Each one has and has had a special place in a farm family's heart, and we here up on Fowler Ridge, miss this special gift from God, our very own Farm Dog, with all of our hearts.

Rest in Peace Sadie Daisy CLoud Wallpe, and one day we will, again, go on one of our long walks.

Thursday, February 1, 2018

Big Changes Going on in My Kitchen!!!!

I suppose I could start off this post with a declarative statement, something like

"There is a refrigerator in my dining room!"

See?  There it is trying to hide behind a door, tricky thing! 

Yes, I know that's not where it belongs...And my dishwasher shouldn't be out in my garage, right?

Those of you who know me well will understand what is happening; it's been a long time coming, but the kitchen renovation is in full swing.

I truly loved my kitchen walls.  My friend Kristi and I had a lot of fun creating this look.  I'll never forget coming down the stairs that first morning and seeing this tree in all its glory gracing my corner.

Change is good, though, and once this project is finished, both the tree and the stairs will be gone.

Happily, we are keeping this painted door and chalkboard.

The chalkboard has "always" been in the kitchen (at least as long as anyone remembers), and that door with my Pumpkin sitting on the French door just makes me smile.  This area above is where most of our remodel is happening.  The painted door leads to the upstairs, the middle door leads to the basement, and the door with the glass window leads back to the porch/laundry area.  I should use the past-tense verb because all three doorways are now gone.

Right now, we are the critical stage of this project where I start to fret if I pick out the right cabinets, paint, light fixtures, and countertop....  I just pray it looks as great in reality as it does in my head.

My two goals for this remodel are to have more counter space and have a place for all of us to gather for breakfast and lunch...... other than sitting in the living room scattering crumbs and "stuff" everywhere.

The girls have definitely outgrown the table Uncle Ed made them.

Yes, unfortunately, we have drifted away from family meals being eaten at the table, and I miss that. I know my friend, Stacey Little, over at Southern Bite, is all about bringing family and friends back to the dining table for conversation and fellowship while eating everyone's favorite southern dishes.  

I stumbled upon this quote.  It truly states the importance of a kitchen:

The kitchen is where we deal
with the elements of the
universe. It is where we can come to
understand our past and ourselves.
~Laura Esquivel

Well said Ms. Esquivel, well said. A kitchen is a family place, a gathering place for family and friends to gather together to cook and talk about life. I know my friends, sisters Miss Megan and Miss Barbara, are also revisiting the kitchen as a place where cherished, time-honored recipes are created and handed down from favorite family cookbooks at These Old Cookbooks.  

So how is it going you ask??  There might be a few preview pictures popping up on my Instagram feed and Lana's Life Facebook page.  Keep in touch, and I will keep you posted.