Thursday, August 28, 2008

A Little Cow

I've been thinking about these so much that last night I dreamt I had one.

My sister, Rechelle, and I have a serious problem with dreaming of the next greatest thing.  She will call me and say something like, "What I think we should do is turn your house into a guest house, build two new houses and renovate the barn.  We will wear cute skirts, cardigan sweaters and sell lovely little things.  And we need to have pretty baskets draped on our arms at all times with fresh produce.  Yes, that's what we're going to do."

Sometimes Rechelle's dreams are a bit unrealistic.....I would never have a basket on my arm, I strictly use plastic buckets. 

As for me?   I'm just dreaming about a little cow.  A teeny, tiny, itty, bitty, whittle cow.  And when I get her, she will have a baby and then I will milk her.  And, and, and then I will make artisan cheeses.  Uh-huh, I will.  And butter.  And yogurt.  And I will always have cream for my coffee.  And people will love me more because I have a Dexter Cow!!!!

Oooh, oooh, oooh, and I'll train her to mow the lawn and only poop in the garden.  And I will love her forever!  She will have baby boys and I'll eat them and not feel guilty.  I will only name them meatish names like Meatball, Gristle and Rump Roast.

I won't give up on this dream.  I will have my cow.  I will!!!!

But first, I need some fencing.  And a big water trough.  And a hay supplier.  And I might need to find the cow.  These are just some of the minor details. 

So, do any of you have a Dexter?  Any advice or wisdom you want to pass along?

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Tick Tick Tick Tick

People keep asking me if it's going to be hard 0n my kids to take these girls to butcher on September 21st.
No.  But I'm going to be a wreck.  I love these darn pigs.  Dang it.
I take care of them every day.  I cut overgrown asparagus for them to eat.  I spray water on them to cool them down.  I buy fly traps to hang outside their pen and then watch them eat the fly trap if I hang it too low.  Dummies!
They happily greet me every time I go out to check on them.  They squeal and grunt at me if I'm in the orchard or caring for the chickens.
And I'm going to eat them.

Monday, August 25, 2008

Yer Daily Dose of Feel Good

If you came here today to feel better about your dumb self, you, my friend,  are in the right spot.  For I am an THE Idiot Extraordinaire.

This week I hung a load of bed linens and blankets and towels out on the line and then my 'Thinkin' Ahead' button got pushed and I said, "Why not start burning some brush?"  Do you know where the burn pile is?  Yep, right next to my clothes line.  Do you know which way the wind was blowing?  Yep, towards the clothes line.  

But I figured it didn't matter  with the fresh air blowing  and I had the kids fold the dry laundry and put it away.  Now I keep smelling smoke in the house and having little panic attacks that the kids are torching each other.  I took a shower and the fresh towel I got out smelled guessed it, smoke.  It was the last towel so I had to use it. 

And then there's this thing.

It's my prepubescent squash plant.  He's saving himself for just the right gal.  He's grown so big and so strong and so handsome but has produced zero offspring.  And like any good mother I am so proud of him that I continue to let him get bigger and stronger.  But what I really want to say to him is, "Please find a female and have some fun.  Babies are good.  I want to eat your babies.  Please go out in the world and spread your seed!"

I'm on the brink of cutting the apron strings here.  By that I mean yank the zero sexed guy straight out of the garden and toss him to the pigs.

And of course there's the rooster.  Clay named him Deacon.  He got the crud beat out of him by the other rooster so now we are letting him roam free.....and wak us up at ungodly hours in the morning.
There's something about having a rooster running around the place that makes me feel official.
And despite his annoying crow, I feel sorry for the guy.  Because, I'm a chicken doctor and I learned early in my training to love all my chickens no matter how much they irritate me.  

That's it for now from Idiotville.  Stay tuned and I might tell you about the time I answered the door straight out of the shower wearing my husband's robe with a hole in the absolute worst place. 

Good Morning!

Dear God in Heaven,

Thank you for the exceedingly nice weather you have sent us this August.  I really am thankful....but, but, but

Well, you see the nice weather let us open up the house and shut off the A/C and now it's sorta chilly so we shut off the fans too.  It's really nice.....but, but, but

It's 4:00 in the freaking morning and one of the roosters has decided to start CROWING!!!  Which means the dog has to start BARKING!  Throw in a couple of cat fights and that puts me here on the computer writing a personal complaint to You the Almighty Creator of all things farm animalish!

I mean, seriously.  Is this a joke?  Did I mention I'm not a full blown farmer ....yet?  I have no need to get up this early.  I really like to sleep.  In my bed.  At 4:00 in the FREAKING MORNING!!!

Oh Lord, you are a funny God, because as I'm writing this thinking I'm so cool I can complain and get away with it, BOTH OF THE ROOSTERS ARE CROWING THEIR EVER LOVIN' RED BEAKS OFF!!

Okay, I get it.  I can not control the actions of my animals.  Thanks for the reminder.  Now, do you think just maybe you might could turn the volume down a bit?

Thanks and Amen

PS- Would you please miraculously heal my poison ivy before I take the bulb sander to it?

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Poison Ivy and Bloopers

What I thought were chigger bites are not.  Dang it.  I got into some poison ivy somewhere and I can't stop scratching it!!  AHAHAHAHAHAHHAHHHHHHHHHHHHH!  It ITCHES!!!!

I think I'll go find the wire bristled grill brush and scrub my arms for a bit.  ARGH!!!!

While I'm fending off the need to scratch you can enjoy my goofy kids some more.  I can't stop watching these videos.  They crack me up and remind me of how I make fun of my mom.  

I learned pretty early that if I could get Mom to laugh that she would stop yelling at me, my kids have obviously learned the same trick.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

April's Factory

Hello.  My name is April.  Welcome to my factory.  Would you like a tour?  Please watch your step, there are several small plastic automobiles placed along the walking paths for your breaking pleasure.  I've only tripped on them about a trillion times.  We have very good health insurance......and liability coverage....and there are bandages strewn on the floor in the upstairs restroom in case you need one or eighty. 

Are there any questions before we begin?  What's that you said?  Did you say that is a crock?

Oh.  Yes, this is a crock.  A butter crock.  We like to move it around the kitchen, uh, er, I mean FACTORY and have it handy in case any of the 'workers' needs a piece of toast or a dollop of butter or maybe they need to moisturize.

We have a resident artist that is practicing butter sculpture.  We're trying to train him to put his tools away,but he thinks it's more convenient to leave them in the crock for all the world to appreciate.  Ugh, artists.  If you think you can't live without a butter crock, go here and get you one.  I love mine, I think I love it more than butter......and I really, really love butter. 

Back to the tour.  Here we have the apples grown out in the orchard.  We store them in specialized recycled apples containers.  Today the factory made apple pie and apple crisp.  I, uh, I mean, we also made apple sauce and froze sliced apples and threw some yucky apples to the  factory garbage disposals.  You know what?  There are still millions and trillions and gazillions of apples on the trees.  We will be making lots of recipes with apples.  If you have a good one, we're all apples....I mean ears.  Please share your favorite and we will put it through our test kitchen and  post photos of the expert taste testers eating it. Because at this factory, we care about our visitors and we want to hear your opinions and taste your dishes.  So, please share the love. 

This was the factories first and maybe last attempt at pickles.  We made southern sweet pickles.  I think they're a bit like bread-n-butter pickles.  We don't like bread-n-butter pickles. We don't know why we made them.  With all the soaking and cooking, it took two days to make two measly jars.  Not worth it.  No.  We are closing the pickle sector effective now.

We also freeze our lovely garden tomatoes.  There are still lots and lots of green tomatoes out in the garden.  We will be putting these to good use this winter.

The factory supervisor likes to bring in herbs to use in the factory recipes.  But, sometimes she brings them in, sets them on the counter and then forgets about them.  Then the herbs wilt and the supervisor has to decide if the herbs should be dried or thrown down the garbage disposals.
So far, the garbage disposals are winning the wilted herbs.  

Did you know the factory was growing grapes?  Yes, we are.... or did.  We made grape jam or rather followed a recipe for grape butter.  It's kitchen tested and approved.

And here is the break room complete with coffee mug.  Don't you love a good coffee mug?  This is from the same place as the butter crock.  If you like it you can see lots more of the guy that makes them here.  

Thanks for coming on our tour today.  If you would like to stick around and help clean up or work or volunteer or give the workers a pep talk or......please don't go....please stay......please help me.....please....please.....pleeeeeeeeeease!

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Who is the crazy lady in the parking lot? That would be me.

Today I had to go to Wal-Phart to buy school supplies for my chicklets.  Why?  Why do I have to go to Wal-Phart?

Because you are cheap.

Oh.  Right.

So, I'm driving with my window down in the front lane of the parking lot and out of the corner of my eye I see a lady crossing the lane on my left side, but I'm ahead of her so I keep driving and she yells, "What the Fluttercup!"  Except she didn't really say fluttercup, because then I would have laughed at her or with her.  So I say back to her in my most motherly voice, "Oh, that's nice."  Because hello?  I have four kids in the car and um, I think my van was in front of you?  But, maybe I was wrong.  I don't know.  So many people at the Wal-Phart.  

Then not even three seconds later...

I am still driving in the front lane and some chicky momma is pushing her cart down the center of the road.  I'm on one side and another car is on the other and I'm thinking, Lady get out of the road or you're going to get hit!  But, I drive by her instead of letting her do whatever it is she's doing with her cart in the middle of the road and she says to me, "Are YOU crazy?!"  and I said back, "Yes.  Yes I am."

Because, who isn't crazy?  I mean for crying out loud I'm at Wal-Phart at the busiest time of day at the end of the school supply shopping frenzy and all the college students are prowling the isles trying to find all the plastic crap they're going to cram in their dorm room and I'm with my four children needing four thousand three ring binders,  the rainbow spectrum of index cards and a semi truck load of paper that I know I won't be able to find because I waited until I thought the coast was clear to shop for school, but obviously the coast is clogged with ladies hanging out precariously in the parking lot!!!!  And you're asking me if I'm crazy?!  Oh, honey, crazy isn't even close to what I am.

But, then she was the second lady to get after me in as many seconds.  So, I think it was me.  In the back of my mind I wanted to run down innocent women in the parking lot of Wal-Phart today.  

April, get back to the farm and stay there, you are a public nuisance.


Sunday, August 17, 2008

They're PIGS!

Hi Daisy.  Yes you're very cute.  But remember what happened last week?  Let's tell the people, okay?

My sister, Rechelle, keeps referring to my humble abode as 'April's Pig Farm'.  It would hurt my feelings immensely if I didn't actually have pigs. 
Also, this is how last Sunday went.

Sunday mornings are always a little crazy around here.  Making sure that everyone has on decent clothes is our biggest challenge.  If we're lucky we cram some sort of breakfast down our gobs usually while standing around the counter and then we clamber over each other to the van to get to church on time.

Last week, I got dressed, fixed my hair, put on make-up, got the boys clothes out, fixed their hair and then decided my shirt needed I ironed it.  Oh, no, MOM!  MOM!  Are you okay?  Goodness, my mother just fainted after reading that I ironed something....MOM!  There she goes again.  Sorry Mom, I won't mention it again.   

Anyhooo, after I was dressed I went out to feed the animals because the rest of my family was still in a tither getting ready or feeding their faces.  

First, I watered the pigs.  It was so bloody hot here that I let the water run over their water trough while they stood beside it and drink in the cold water.  Letting the water run over also makes them a nice mud hole to wallow in and get cool.  Daisy, my favorite pig, decided to flop down on her side after getting a drink then stand up and start shaking like a wet dog.  And do you know what I did?  I became momentarily paralyzed while Daisy shook mud all over me.  I had little mud dots all over my freshly ironed shirt (take deep cleansing breaths Mom), my skirt, my legs, my arms and my made-up face.  DANG PIG!  Garsh Darn Dang PIG!  And I had ironed my shirt! Oh, for heaven's sake Mother get up!  

Daisy?  Daisy?  Are you laughing at me?  You think getting me muddy is funny?!  Well, guess what?  I'm going to EAT YOU!!

So, back inside to change, but first I put the water on the garden to run until I came back.  I know, I'm always thinkin', always muti-tasking, always lookin' ahead and being prepared.  Yep, that's me.  In fact today I should rename my bog 'Always Thinkin' Ahead'.  

While I walked through the kitchen I flung some pita bread in the toaster to eat on my way out the door.  I know!  ALWAYS THINKIN' AHEAD!

I washed my face, arms, legs, changed my clothes and went back downstairs.  I slathered honey on my pita bread and then Clay started yelling at everyone to get in the van. 

We were three miles down the road when I said to Clay with my mouth full of bread and honey, "I din I wif da wadda un."


"Un, dee!  Un dee wee duh wadda un!"  

And because we've been married so long and not because I speak with a mouth full of food all the time, he knew we had to go back home and turn the water off.

Which turned out to be a good thing because I dripped honey all over the front of me and was a big sticky mess.   So I volunteered to get out and shut off the hydrant and quickly clean myself off.  

It's a good thing I decided to look at myself in the visor mirror before I got to church because I had mud on my ear and honey on my cheek. 

We were 15 minutes late......all due to my thinkin' ahead!
What?  Now you're sorry?  Okay, I forgive you......but, I'm still going to eat you.

Saturday, August 16, 2008

the traveling minstrel

Could you ladies help a poor guy out? I ain't got no money honey. See my Hoover flag? It's wavin' fer help. How 'bout I play ya a lil' tune on me harmony kuh?

Ooooh, we would love that! My goodness yes play us something nice and smooooooth.

Moooove over Bossy! I can't see! Mooooove!

How about a little Johnny Cash? Or Bob Dylan?

Well? Whadya think?

Phbllllbt. I'm not paying for that.

Friday, August 15, 2008


Hey big sweaty man.  Are those all your kids?  I was just thinkin'.
If you weren't too busy.
If you could find the time.
Maybe we could.....
get hitched....again.  What?  No?  You look shocked?  Have we done this before?
I think you're kinda cute. And oh, so manly with your big saw there.
And I heard a rumor that we really dig the same stuff.  Like that there porch and takin' a spin on the dance floor.
And you have a nice  little caboose.  A very nice little caboose.

I promise I'll be nice.  At least for a day or two.
And I'll let you pet the chickens.  Or you could just hold them while I stick my finger up there yoohoo.

I'll let you bite my neck and drain the blood right out of me....but just this once, cuz I'm sorta busy tomorrow and I'm gonna need my strength to get the rest of those apples put up.

Whatta ya say?  Think you and your little dog could handle puttin' up with me a while longer?
You up for another 16 years?
You feelin' it?  Think we have this thing mastered yet?
Cuz, I still like you a whole lot.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Phone Conversations

Rechelle- Was she always that farty?

Me- Uh, yeah, I think so.

Rechelle- I don't remember her being that farty.

Me- You're saying farty. 

Rechelle- I know.  I like it.  Farty.

After this conversation Clay told me it's very difficult to talk to me on the phone when he's at his desk where other people can hear him.

Clay- Hullo.

(long pause)

Clay- How?

Clay- You couldn't get out?

Clay- Did he hurt you?

Clay- Why didn't the kids hear you screaming?

Clay- I do feel sorry for you.

Clay- Are you okay now?

Clay- No, I'm not laughing.

Clay- Bad rooster.

Clay- Bad, bad rooster.

Clay- I don't think it was the kids' fault.

Clay- Okay, okay, sorry.  

Clay- I have to go.

Clay- I do feel sorry for you.

Clay- I didn't lock you in the chicken coop.

Clay- Yes, you should go lie down.

Clay- I have to go, but it's not because I don't feel sorry for you.

Clay- Yes, you sound stricken.

Clay- The door is broken?

Clay- Is Seth fixing it?

Clay- Very bad rooster.  

Clay- I really do have to go.  But, I love you and I'm glad the rooster didn't hurt you and I know it wasn't your fault.  Because it never is......  


Me- Hello.

Mom- Is this my sweet darling daughter?

Me- Hi Mom.

Mom- Your father needs to talk to you about a fund raiser for the Vurtus (which is sorta the name of my kids' school but not quite and I've given up trying to get her to pronounce it correctly.)  So here he is......HARRY!  April's on the phone!   She wants to talk to you about your bike ride!

Dad- Hello?

Me- Hi Dad.  

Dad- Hi.

Me- So, you want to talk to me about a fund raising bike ride?

Dad- Uh-huh.

Mom- Harry!  Tell her about the presentation!

Dad- What presentation?

Mom- People will want to see a presentation!

Dad- Why?  I don't want to do a presentation.  That's what April is going to do.

Me- I'm going to do a presentation?  To who?  When?  What?

Dad- I just want to ride the bike.  

Mom- You are going to have to take the bike and make the presentation!  People won't understand what you're trying to do for the Vurtus!

Dad- Martha!  You don't know the first thing about biking people!  They don't need to see a presentation!

Mom- Harry!  I'm not talking about the biking people!  I'm talking about the Vurtus people!

Dad- That's what April's going to do.  She can do that.

Me- Uh.  

Mom- You can not make April explain your biking to Vurtus!

Me- Er.

Dad- Oh for crying out loud!

Me- Okay.  I think you both have some sort of weird and obscure valid point that someone in the cosmos is going to understand, but I'm going to get off the phone now.  Good talking to you both.  Love ya.....

Mom- Oh,  well, okay Honey.  Good grief, your father is so stubborn!  Now line up those babies all in a row and give them a big hug and kiss for me. 

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

It's time I told you about the day.....

I locked myself in the chicken coop.

It was an accident, I swear.

I wanted the door shut so I could capture one of the hens that had been overly pecked.  Because, you know, I'm a chicken doctor.   But, I shut the door a bit too much and it, it, it locked me in.

I had the hen secured under my arm and I started yelling for "Ellllllen" and "Seththththth".  But they couldn't hear me.  Because they were inside watching a movie!  With their cousins!  And they had the volume on FULL BLAST!!!!

So, I started yelling louder and Louder and LOUDER!

And that's what brought the rooster into the coop to investigate.

Do you know what a rooster does when he sees a crazy yelling woman handling one of his hens?  That's right.  He attacks.

So, now I'm SCREAMING  Somebody PLEASE HELP ME!!!  While I'm kicking a pissed off rooster.

Of course the more I screamed for help the more he attacked me.  Finally, I let him have it and he scampered back outside just long enough for me to decide my only escape was to dismantle the leg on the feeder and use it to pry open the door.  So, that's what I did.

Man was I ticked.  And shaky.  And pissed.  And angry.  And a little out of my mind crazy.  

I needed someone to blame because it was obviously not my fault that I locked myself in the coop and like always nobody came to rescue me!

My destination was the house to eat my young.  Or just spit fire on them until they were nice and charred, then I would  feed them to the chickens.  

I asked my two oldest children to reenact the whole scene.  Notice Ellen's new braceless smile!


Sunday, August 10, 2008

There really is a Coal Creek.....

Coal Creek is a magical mystical place.
Where children get lost in their adventures and little, blond-headed boys daydream.  Uh, is your shirt on backwards little, blond-headed daydreaming boy?
Ahem, right.  Back to Coal's a place where tree swings were left abandoned by children of years gone by to be discovered by the young curious children of Coal Creek Farm.
The children loose all sense of time and place as they splash and swing and slide down the mud hill.  And point out all the wonders that live around the banks of the creek.

And they bring along their best friends.
Because Coal Creek is a fun place to introduce to your friends.
And Cousins.

Uh, hey little boy?  Do you have your shirt on backwards too?  Are you from a homeschooling family?  Just wondering.

Where is your mother?  Are you a fairy?  A backward shirt wearing fairy?  Or an elf?  Ogre?   Nymph?  Why are you looking at me like that?

Hey!  I'm talking to you!  Where you going?    Do I get three wishes?  HEY!  Okay, never mind.  THE END.