This old girl is finaly getting a face lift

Everygirl in her life at one point, thinks she has wrinkles, extra pounds, bad hair and just about everything about her just doen’t set right sometimes in her life. When you get that chance to make a change in your apperance you often wonder If this is the right choice, hair color change, cut my hair short, leave it long or do a whole new you! Well I’ll say this old girl is going through some big changes, and it starting right now.

Often we overlook our selves by doing so much for others, honestly most won’t care what you look like so sometimes you just don’t care either. Apperances to some are about everything, apperances to some are nothing, Who cares right?, Well maybe for some they don’t care and we all know this kind, they pretty much only care for themselves.

You ever hear someone say how much better they feel when they change their apperance, well this old girl is starting to feel just that, this face lift will launch a new her with only more changes to come a total make over before long, this may take some time because of the costs, but it’s a start and you’ve got to start somewhere to get anywhere.

How exciting it will be to have a new look, after looking haggard and worn down for years, like being used up and no one caring , just waiting for someone to take notice and care about you again.

Well this old girl is on the road to a new life ahead with someone caring, this face lift will be the start to a boom of excitment for her and she will once again have a little shine from her lift, and maybe one day she again be what she once was in her hay day.

If you haven’t guessed yet, I’m not talking about me getting a face lift, although I probalby could use it but it’s not for me, but it’s certainly for the old girl.

“The old girl” is our beloved historic dairy barn, she’d getting a face lift this week with a new roof! She already is feeling better with all that old rusty metal removed, and breathing a little till the new metal roofing goes up and she will shine so big when the sun hits her roof it will look like she is smiling.

As you can tell I’m very excited for her, she is well deserved a makeover, she has been a loyal grand girl for many years to those that used her for many tasks, including miking cows.  Years have taken there toll on her, she has been overlooked, as well some repairs have not been so timely or fattering to her.

The sweetheart she is from her old lap siding, with her tall rafters, so many memories we will never know, for she keeps them tucked away in her beautiful beams of wood that was built many years go. I stand and look up to the rafters where the little birds like to nest, and she greets them each spring as they return to raise their young in her beautiful presence.

“The old girl” is cherished for her beauty,  for her ability to give us hope of the memories, because we know they are there, her make over starting with her roof will bring back her shine giving her once again the feeling she has a purpose and is cared for.

The home page picture of her will be replaced as each step in her make over is achieved, be sure to check on her status, celebrating her victories along the way.




Humor is everywhere just listen

I would even go so far to say that Humor is in your genes, an inheritable factor passed down from generations of others that see the funny side for what it really is the “spice of life”.  Everyone isn’t gifted with it, nor are some even effected by a hilarity of sorts and some of us can’t re-tale a tale that was  comical to most , which becomes quirky to others.

My Mom had a quick wit, my oldest bother had it , two of my sons have it, me every once in while I can come up with something to at least make you smile. What is quick wit? the ability to think fast with a comeback line or to make a single conversation into a hilarious situation that will make you laugh so hard tears run down your face, or If your like me I laugh so hard I feel like I might pee my pants.

When my two boys get together their humor feeds off one another, which usually keeps us all in “stiches” or leaving the room to compose ourselves, but really what does humor have to do with anything in our lives? I’ll tell you lately I’ve been trying to teach my self to find humor in everything that irritates me, especially with others, however some are harder to find.

I was going through some papers the other day and found a letter written to me from my Mom, she wrote in the letter how things were going for her a typical letter from a parent, a small sheet of note pad paper lay inside this letter, again I read it as I had never read it before. Of course it was humorous but it brought such joy to see her hand writing and feel her wit through her writing. I’m sharing it with you today, from a lady that could find humor in just about everything, something I’m hoping I can get better at, because I find it makes you happy and If your having a bad day, then laughter is the key.

I can’t say for sure where Mom got this or If she wrote it, although it wouldn’t suprise me she was always writing things down, either way I hope you enjoy it from a grand lady that was a hoot!

“With time, women gain weight because we accumulate so much information & wisdom in our heads that when there is no more room, it distrubutes out to the rest of our bodies.  So we aren’t heavy, we are enormously cultured, educated and happy.  Begining today, when I look at my butt in the mirror I think good grief look how smart I am!  Must be where the expression “Smart Ass” came from?






Everyday gets a little lighter on the Farm

Which means I ‘m ready for day light savings to change, going to work in the dark and getting home in the dark isn’t something I really enjoy.  I don’t get to see the farm in daylight, can’t see the horses, just feel like I’m away for 4 or 5 days at a time depending on my schedule.  When the weekend comes around, it’s all good and it’s like I’m back where I belong again. Then it starts all over again come Monday morning.

Except for yesterday and today, I was met with frosty mornings, cool temperatures, icy water buckets and cloudy skies, along with snow in the forecast.  I really didn’t let any of that bother me I was just glad to be home on the farm, enjoying the sites in the daylight doing farm things  like feeding the animals.

Somehow I just enjoy cleaning out the horse’s run-ins, refilling them with shavings,  and just love their company to the alternative of going to work, well yes it is work here on the farm but I don’t see it as that, housework that’s work I don’t like doing it, like my house clean but hate doing it.  Being out side, doesn’t matter the wheather it’s were I want to be.

I like the feeling when the horses are so happy, they let me know by their calls , nickering when they see me coming or how excited they were today when they all got new selenium blocks and salt on a rope to hang in their sheds.  Ever see a 29 years old horse get so excited he jumps up down when he sees his grain bucket coming and knows there’s cut up carrots and apples because mom’s coming, that a priceles site and a heart renching feeling,  makes you smile no matter what else is going on in your life.

Being home on the farm means, I get to gather the chicken eggs and watch those silly hens do crazy stuff like trying to catch something blowing in the wind because to them it might be edible , I can hand feed the rabbits their papaya tablet on saturday mornings, the barn cats can get their ears scratched,  the four dogs can supervisor the morning and evening chores and take me on a guided trip to the end of the property and back to make sure everything is up to their standards.

Everyone has their favorite things in life, for me it’s just being with the animals, everyday, anyday.   I never tire of it, I can hardly wait for it to get light enough on the weekend mornings so I can go outside and do chores and just be with the animals.  Everyday is a new adventure on the farm and for me the farm is my adventure, and I wouldn’t have it any other way.

So hurry and come day light savings, so I  can spend longer days into the early evening with some of the things I love most in my life here on the farm, the animals.



Family Gatherings, Traditions, making Memories

This a farm post no doubt, everyone’s shoes, boots and everything else at the door ready to go outside for another cold crisp morning. The farm was blessed this year with our three sons, along with grand kids and grand dogs for the Christmas Festivities. It’s been a while that we all could get together, seems it gets harder and harder to match everyone’s schedules, but when we do we make up for all the time we spend away from each other. Activities for the grandkids was a highlight for them, coming to the farm gives them a chance to partake in a few events that they don’t normally do.  Feeding animals every morning and evening soon became “chores”for some, and others wanted to do more. Evening chores included bringing in the wood, so a fire could be started to keep the house cozy warm from the cold nights, stoking the fire with adult supervision seemed to have interest.  Day activities included, riding in the sled and being pulled by the UTV, the grand boys enjoyed hot roding in the UTV with the uncles, but the granddaughter would rather feed horses! (That’s my horse girl).  Roasting marsh mellows after a snow fight with all the brothers to warm everyone up after they declared they were wet in places they hadn’t know snow could get to! We even squeezed in making ginger bread man cookies and decorating for Santa. (that could be come a tradition) The whole family pizza party at the local pizza pub, video games, pool, and beer, except next time they can order their own because they didn’t like the kind I thought I was ordering! Late night card and board games became an highlight for the adults, while the grandkids watched movies, played and certainly fell asleep after playing hard on the farm.

With all we had going on, we still have traditions that doesn’t change for us, even when family doesn’t come it’s something we’ve been doing many years and will continue as long as we are able. My husbands grandmother was Scandinavian, we celebrate Christmas Eve with a traditional seafood dinner that has been carried on for many generations. As our family has grown, not everyone enjoys seafood so we’ve added a few other goodies for everyone to enjoy.  The one recipe that has been passed on to me buy Grandma Randrup along with her pan to bake it in is, Carrot Ring. This is a dish that her family made, and now we make it once a year at Christmas Eve, with shrimp, oven baked oysters, shrimp salad, oven baked rolls, veggie and cold cut tray and of course desert, cheese cake. The ingredients  is pretty simple as is the recipe, and to describe the taste would be hard other than to say I’ve enjoyed it for over 35 plus years.

Making memories is priceless, I’d have to say as I get older I find it becomes more important to me to spend time with family and do the things you really want to do in life. I enjoy spending time with my grandkids, watching how quick they grow up, remembering when my kids where that young and how fast they grew to be parents of their own. We seem to think we have so much time to do this and that and pretty soon that time is neither this or that, it just not. What I enjoy the most with them is watching my grandsons rodeo, and playing foot ball. I love to watch my granddaughter get excited about feeding the horses their grain, cleaning the horse sheds out or scooping poop as we call it on the farm.  I enjoy that because that is part of their heritage, of who they are.  Yes they have other things in life to do that doesn’t pertain to their heritage, but it gives them a map to always circle back to where their roots are.

I share this family recipe with you, it’s a tradition we make memories with,

Carrot Ring

2 cups finely grated carrots , 1 cup saltine cracker crumbs, 1 Tablespoon flour, 4 eggs beaten seperately

1 cup cream beaten stiff, salt to taste:

Mix flour with cracker crumbs add to carrots with beaten egg yolks.  Add whipped cream, Add beaten egg whites last. Pour into greased ring pan/mold (metal one used for generations). Set ring mold in pan of hot water for baking.

Bake at 350 degree oven for 35-40 minutes. Invert pan on plate for serving.

White Sauce for Carrot Ring:

3 TBSP Butter, 3 TBSP Flour, 1 1/2 cup milk, salt to taste, cook over stove until thick.

Add salad shrimp, about two cups to sauce, pour over inverted carrot ring .


Enjoy, and make those traditions even If it’s popcorn and movies night.






Be thankful everyday and give thanks for everything

Thanksgiving has come and gone for another year, yet why should we not be thankful everyday and give thanks daily for everything?. I’d like to think there are more of us that think this way, is it selfish of me to think this? Maybe, but that’s not going to change my beliefs nor will I be able to change others. I know we are all super busy in our lives, time seems to go whizzing by the older we get so we just don’t take the time to think of all the things we could or should be thankful for.  I believe even the little things matter, what’s a little thing? depending on what you believe, most of us are thankful for our friends and family how about being thankful your vehicle started one cold and frosty morning not that I would wish that on anyone, but isn’t that a little thing compared others.

We are thankful for our health and our loved ones health, how about being thankful for the person who delivers your mail or your newspaper, or the neighbor that shared his garden with you or how about being thankful for the grocery clerk that packs your groceries just the way you like it.  I think of all these little things that are done for us by people we don’t know very well, like the older gentleman that held the door for you, well of course we say thank you to them but I’m thankful for them, because sometimes it’s the little things in life that turn into the big ones.

As we enter into the Holiday Season, we should think of others more than our selves and consider how thankful we are for everyday we are given to see our friends and family and share our lives with others. Giving thanks everyday for something, doesn’t matter what it is just something to lighten your day try it you might  surprise yourself just how many things you are really thankful for.

Happy Holidays everyone, today I’m thankful I have all of you to be thankful for.


What Monarch Butterflies teach us

Monarch Butteries are dependent on milkweed for survival, while there are several species of milkweed plants their need narrows with specific milkweed native to their areas. The plant is essential to their survival. Monarchs need more than milkweed to support them throughout the year. Adult monarchs need nectar to fuel them during the breeding cycle and to build up stores of fat which sustain them during fall migration and winter.  Over the last two decades, the western population of the Monarch that over winters spreading out hundreds of miles along the California coast has declined by 50 percent.

Historically, there were more than 400 overwintering sites along the coastal range of California; currently there are 221 known active sites while only 48 of these sites had more than 1,000 butterflies in 2015. The case of decline is varied: loss of breeding and migration habitat, herbicide and insecticide applications, loss or alteration of overwintering sites, climate change, and disease.

Plant it and they will come, our tell of citizen science of the Monarch Butterfly:

In 2015: The wonder of nature came within three weeks of planting just (6) young milkweed plants along with other native plants of the Great Basin.  The Monarch caterpillars were discovered munching away at the six young plants within weeks of planting. Up to (25) caterpillars of various sizes grazed on the plants turning them into just stems of what was once milkweed plants. Within a month’s time of planting nature once again prevailed and the Monarch’s chrysalis  stage started, daily the caterpillars would wander on to find “their chosen spot” to transform to the next succession of life.

In 2016: Additional milkweed was planted up to a hundred plants in (4) different locations, the Monarchs once again did not disappoint and discovered the plants, and so the cycle of life continued. This year we started population counts for caterpillars, butterflies, chrysalis, along with confirmed Monarch hatches.  Winter comes early in the Great Basin and the nights get cold, caterpillars were still struggling to get enough nourishment to transform into the chrysalis stage. The late caterpillars were “taken in” for captive rearing through their final stage to the chrysalis and into the butterfly. The Monarchs hatched within in a few days of each other, they were tagged and released in Redding, CA where it was still warm and the Monarch’s would have a better chance of reaching their winter grounds.

In 2017: The Monarch Project again didn’t disappoint, the Monarchs were a month late of returning due to storms along their migratory route back from their winter grounds. Getting a late start means being here later in the year when the weather changes to cold nights. About 12 chrysalises were taken in for hatching purposes, upon hatching they were tagged, released and told to fly fast to their winter grounds. We had a great year lots of stats collected; every year seems to be a greater success story. The project took a different direction this year, so it seems it became more of an education program then a science one.  You see the public started to notice our little Monarch Project which meant we were asked to speak at group meetings, we were ask to give tours of our project because who doesn’t want to see the Monarch life cycle “live” right? Imagine going into a garden and seeing all four stages of the Monarch Butterfly live in front of your eyes, butterfly, eggs, caterpillars, and chrysalis. It is truly amazing really.  So we step back from The Monarch Project because when we are asked to do education it turns into a whole other realm in which some believe is not citizen science. We enjoy the education concept and grasp the benefits we have seen from it, but we feel you can’t have science with out education. The Monarchs will still come; even though we are not there counting them, we have learned a lot in the three years, and will never forget the amazing things of life we have witnessed. What a blessing this ride has been.

What did the Monarch’s teach us; they taught us about what happens in nature, life and death, struggles for a species that has a lot of unfortunate issues to endure, how fragile it can be, yet at times stronger than you or I.

Our Motto: “Creating Habitat and engaging others in the Conservation of the Monarch Butterfly “

A big thank you to Tracy Hart for the wonderful photographs of the Monarch Project along with her dedication and passion to the project and the Monarch Butterfly.



DIY Bird Feeder

This is such an easy quick craft to make with your kids/grandkids or a gift for someone, add a bird book and some bird seed to make it special. When my father in law had to be placed into an assistant living home he didn’t like it very much. Living on a ranch his whole life then being in side all day really upset him, until he discovered the bird feeder at the window in the common room.  There he could see all the birds that came to the feeder everyday, that he enjoyed something for him to look forward to.

Fall is the time we start filling our bird feeders again here on the farm, birds are migrating through to their wintering grounds, we catch sightings of a variety of birds. Of course we have the locals that don’t migrate, we love to watch the quail come to the feeding area.


So here’s the instructions :

What you will need:

  • Plastic bottle, any size  (make sure they attach to the feeding tray) I discovered some are different sizes.
  • Bird Feeding tray/comes with handle (screws on to the plastic bottle) these can be purchased on line, you can get a three pack from Amazon.
  • Decorative Duck tape
  • Scissors
  • Something to punch holes in the plastic bottle

Rinse out your plastic bottle, let dry. Once your bottle is dry, you can add your decorative duck tape. I found it to be easier If I measured and cut the strips, then trying to fight the whole roll of tape. Make sure you over lap your tape some to keep moisture from getting between the bottle and the tape. Once you get your tape on you can twist your empty plastic bottle onto the feeding tray until snug. Punch two small holes about 1/2 to 1 inch from the bottom of the bottle and insert hanger tabs in both holes (youngsters will need help with this part). To fill with seed turn your feeder over and remove the plug from the bottom of the feeding tray by twisting. It’s best to use a funnel to fill the bottle with seed. Replace plug and twist to lock in place. DYI Funnel: take a plastic bottle and cut  about 3 to 4 inches from the top around the bottle to create a funnel for your bird seed, I keep mine with the seed so I don’t have to go looking for one. That’s it you have a DYI bird feeder and funnel, If you want to give them as gifts and you want to fill them with seed first, just fill you bottle with the top facing up (with out the feeding tray attached) place a piece of thin packing tape over the bottle top and replace with the bird feeding tray.

There is some great decorative duck tape patterns out there, you can get really creative with these. Make them in different sizes and shaped plastic bottles to create an adventure for the birds.

Happy Fall, hope you enjoy the DIY bird feeder and funnel craft.