Summer’s Gifts—Tuesday, September 2, 2014

It is cold here this morning.  49*…a light jacket was in order to change the irrigation water.

unnamed

As a gift to me   I was sent several photos of those beautiful little flying jewels of summer.  Kagedog lives in Cedaredge, Colorado and is a regular visitor to our little blog.  She knows how much I enjoy the Hummingbirds so sent to me some very nice photos.  She also gave me permission to share them with you. :)

unnamed (1)

I hope you enjoy them as much as I do.

We still have lots of Hummingbirds here.  I don’t know if they are the regulars or if they are moving through.  This morning they were fluffed way up as they drank from the feeders.  Although, it is cool in the mornings the days still warm up nicely, as much as 89*.

unnamed (2)I hope your Tuesday is a good one.  It’s time to put the bean puller on and finish work on the combine.  We are still waiting for the alfalfa to turn into hay.  Hope the rains stay away for a least two or more weeks!

unnamed (3)

Your friend on a western Colorado Farm,

Linda

Stretch Marks, Labor Day, Monday, September 1, 2014

It’s that time of year….

Third-Cutting-of-Hay(Third cutting of alfalfa)

When all of spring and summer come together

Pink-over-hayThird cutting of hay is cut and drying…Terry is raking and turning the rows even as I type away.

SoonSoon, very soon…maybe tomorrow or the next day…it all depends on the weather, he will pull the pinto beans.

Stretches-4The corn has passed the blister stage, moving into the dough. After that it will be ready to ‘dry down’.

Stretch-2We are on the last little bits of irrigation.  No more changing water on the pinto beans, only one more good soaking of the alfalfa, after the last bale has been hauled and stacked (possibly two if the fall is terribly dry—alfalfa can’t go into the winter dry or the crop will die.)

All that is left is watering the corn, by the end of September (in 30 days, maybe a few more, but not many-maybe even less) the irrigation water will be turned off to our farm.

We will be done.

After that we wait…until the last of October or the first of November when the harvest of the field corn begins.  Those that have ensilage or chopp’n corn, or silage (it’s all one in the same) will start filling the silos this week.

The stretch for harvest has begun!

Sun-eveningThen winter’s silence will descend.

But not for awhile.

Not for awhile.

Not just yet.

The gift of the spring and summer’s work will be collected.  The work is has begun!

We will stretch ourselves thin, eat on the run, get up before dawn and settle back down way after dusk.  It will look easy to those driving by—people who have moved to the country to get away from the crowds.

I suppose it is, after all these years…it’s because we practice all the time. The continuing education credits come when this year’s paycheck comes in.  (We are paid once a year for pinto beans and corn.  The hay brings in small checks as the bales are sold.)

Stretch-1Harvest!  It is what we work for— the accumulation of the year.

Your friend on a farm in Western Colorado,

Linda

 

 

 

 

The Ultimate Reward–Sunday, August 31, 2014

Zinnia-2September always, always, always means school to me.  Back to school was just after Labor Day when my brother and I grew up.

Back to School meant new crayons, sharpened pencils, lined paper, or whatever classroom requirement for that year or that grade.  It also meant seeing old friends and making new ones.

My maternal grandmother, Ruth Love (Wootton) Thomas, was a grade school teacher…her classroom specialties were the First and the Third Grades.

She was gifted in helping children learn to love learning.

Zinnia-1She taught in Texas and in Cedaredge, and in Delta, Colorado, before she retired. I have heard many stories of her times in the classrooms and the little children she helped ‘open their minds’ to the wonders of knowledge.

In thinking of these things—first day of school and my grandmother, it brought to mind she would always say: “Teachers are not like any other profession.  Teachers never know if they make a difference in the lives of their students…students and teachers are just a given.”

Remembering this I also chanced upon another profound thing that happened to her late, late in her life.  She must have been in her very late 80’s or early 90’s; Granddad had passed on for several years.

Since Gram lived at home alone, next to a busy highway she was very careful about opening her door to just anyone.  Late one summer afternoon she heard a knock on her front door—going to the big window and peeking around the curtain she saw a little old man standing there twisting his dress hat around and around in his hands.

He knocked again, still acting very nervous, which also made Gram a little ‘on edge’.  The third knock he hollard: “Miz Ruth?  Miz Ruth, are you in there?”

It was hearing the Miz Ruth she realized that this old man must be someone who knew her from her past. Opening the door she found out this man was a former Third Grade student for long-long ago.

“Miz Ruth”, he explained “I have thought and thought and thought about you all my life.  I have wanted to find you [someday] to tell you ‘Thank You’ for my year in the Third grade in your classroom.”

Gram said they spent the rest of the afternoon having a ‘lovely conversation’.

After he left she called me to tell about this wonderful experience her voice clogged with tears.  “Hearing that you made a difference in one your students lives is the ultimate gift”‘ she stated to me.

Pretty-Bubbles

(Bubbles in the air)

I suppose like most of us we can remember those teachers that created nightmares for us in school, I’m sure we can remember the ones who also lifted us up and sprung us into that next level of learning.  If you happened to see that teacher that propelled you forward…remember to let that person know…both of your days will be much brighter.

Sending you gratitude and thanks for being my friend,

In Friendship

Linda

 

 

The Adventures of Fuzzy and Boomer—ICK is Only Relative

I DO NOT GET IT!!!!

FUZZZZZYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYY HELP ME!!!

FUZZY STOP MOM!

PLEASE!!!

Listen

Stop Mom?  Why Boomer?

She went inside to get a bucket of soap and water and a bucket of clean water.

Sigh.

Gosh!  Why Boomer?  I don’t see any reason WHY she would be after ‘bath’ stuff.

Fresh

Well, er…it’s because of this—see?

Yeah!  Hummm, smells pretty interesting, Boom.  Where did you find it?

Red-Silk

In the corn field…Oh, Fuzzy!  It was so neat!  I was out there with Mom while she picked the very last of the sweet corn; it was just there, about four rows in and big, huge, hulking pile of FRESH poop!

I was ecstatic to be the very first dog to find it!

YIPPEE!!!

It was so cool, I rubbed my whole neck and face and then rolled my back in it!

Suddenly I heard Mom heading back to the house so I ran just as fast as I could run to catch up with her and show her my very cool treasure!!!  I had the biggest grin on my face so she would understand just what a neat thing I was wearing.

Ummm….she didn’t like it, Boomer?

Eae

No, actually she didn’t.  She just said, “Sit right here, Boomer…I’m going in to get your bath stuff.  You are NOT wearing fresh poop!”  Then she headed into the house.

Well, that’s okay, Buddy!  Humans never understand the good stuff in life!  At least you got to have it for a few minutes.

Yeah, I guess so, Fuzzy.  I guess so. Pouted Boomer.

Rain-clouds

At least the rains are leaving and the sun is coming back.  We will be able to lay in the warmth come morning.

True, Fuzzy!  True.  Who knows I just might find something else out there.  A dog can always hope.

Boomer

You Just GOT to See This–Wednesday, August 26, 2014

Bull Snake

Linda Pierson from Just Another Day on the Prairie in Alberta, Canada, said I could use this photo of a bull snake sunning itself.  A friend of her’s took the photo.  It is such an unusual place to find bull snake I just had to share it will all of You!

On barbed wire no less!

Hope you enjoy!

Your farm friend on a Western Colorado Farm

Linda

 

 

 

 

All the Way from France-a Gift of Love and Hope–Tuesday, August 26, 2014

I have so many, many, many warm and delightful friends–people from all around the globe and in many walks of life! You (each and everyone of you) are a gift of joy!
Writing this Life on a Colorado Farm blog has created for me a sort of fairy-tale kind of experience.  If it weren’t for the internet and for the medium of blogs the miracles of strong friendships from here, there, and everywhere could never have occurred.
Miracles really are a part of everyday living…we just forget to see them.
Charlotte Moore  sent to me these three delightful rainbows.  Perfect for this time of transition—and for my Tuesday guest posts.  Here is what she wrote when she sent them to me:
From-France
“We always see rainbows in this spot, every summer. Double like this one.
From-France-2
 Sometimes disappearing but intense like this one
From-France-3
 Sometimes all the way across.
xx Charlotte
Accolay, France”
Thank you, My Friends, I do Believe in the Gift of Miracles!
Your friend on a farm in Western Colorado
Linda

Among the Tears–Monday, August 25, 2014

LightThe last few days have been a flurry of ‘rush’.  A hurry, hurry-up, to cram in as much as we possibly can for the two little girls still with us.

Blade has already made the switch to being a Craig Middle School Bulldog…one of his practices had Bronco Great Rick Upchurch, helping with the training.  (How cool is THAT!!!?)  I looked for Bladen, he is Number 1, but I couldn’t find him amongst the others.  :)

Practice-1There was lots and lots of archery practice with Grandpa

TryingEven Tally started to learn.

We had kids over to spend the night, and Linkin went to spend the night with her Best Friend Forever.  Tallin went with Aunt Shannon and Jason to trim horses hooves (15 horses…she even got to ride one!!!)

Gradually we had to start packing—the time was coming to an end.

Then Mom-mo arrived ready to pick up her kids, critters and all the stuff that went with them.

Pigs

 

After Mom-mom packed the van full of suitcases, bikes, and pillows— the critters loaded–first the Guinea pigs, WaitingHank Puff, who actually seemed as sad as Linkin. He even went around giving Fuzzy and Boomer kisses…who would have thought that.

Going-HomeThe last to go in was the bunny, Snowball.

A flurry of kisses and hugs then the little girls were loaded.  Suddenly Linkin called out…her voice clogged with tears….”I love you! I’ll Miss You!  It was never supposed to be this way!”  Then we were all crying…huge silent tears.

The van pulled away…little hands waving frantically out the window.  We stayed and watched gradually the van became a just a white dot.

From-JanToday, as I write this, they are in school.  All of them.  A good thing.  Busy minds heal broken hearts.

Out in my garden I saw the beautiful cheerful California Poppies, that Jan sent to us after our horrible fire three years ago.  Bright, cheerful, signs of hope and regrowth.

We are all going to make it…But each of you already know that, many of you have sent words of encouragement and kindness.  I promise I will not belabor the fact they have journeyed onto a new adventure.  I will send them hope and love and good wishes.  I will not cry but look forward to visits!

I, too, will move forward!

Light-on-the-clouds

Your farm friend,

Linda

 

 

 

The Adventures of Fuzzy and Boomer—Saved by the Pipe

MOM!

WIndy
DAD!

MOM!

DAD!!!

PROBLEM AT THE END OF THE BEAN FIELD!!!!

HURRY!!

Problem

Keep barking Boomer!!! We have to let Mom and Dad know there is a wreck at the end of the bean field!

Okay, Fuzzy! HAWOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOL!!!

“Terry, what’s wrong with the dogs?  They sound like something bad is in the yard.”

“I don’t know…you see anything?”

“WOW!  Yes!  Looks like there is a jeep in the canal!”

“Sure does, I’ll go down and see what happened.”

“Okay, the girls and I will stay here.  Shhhh boys!  Good dogs!”

“Good dogs!”

Come on Fuzzy let’s go with Dad and see what the deal is.

Aaaaa… you go Boom.  I had better stay here with Mom and the little girls.  We can’t both be gone…Mom might need one of us.  You go.

Okay!

Oops

You are back, Boom…what did you find out?

Yeah, I had to come back, the Sheriff men were down there and sorta, kinda yelled at me for sniffing around one of the car’s tires.  So I lifted a leg real fast, doused his tire and took off for home.

Chuckle, snort!  That’s good one, Boomer!  Well, done.

So what happened anyway?

I heard the man, who was driving the jeep, tell Dad that he was coming down off 25 Mesa and missed the turn.  He saw there was a nice shoulder on the road so thought he would back up then make the turn.

He was backing up when suddenly the jeep slid and fell right into the canal.

The man said he didn’t know there was a canal THERE!!!!

Saved

(That is the pipe which, held up the Jeep)

Dad told the man he was really lucky because the pipe holding the telephone cable in it (which ran the length of the canal) saved his jeep.  Otherwise the jeep would have flipped over on its top and been swooshed right under the road…with the man in it!

Dad offered to get the jeep out for the man, but he wanted a wrecker to do it.  Seems the man had just retired and used his retirement money to buy this jeep 9 days ago.  He was afraid a farmer and tractor might wreck his jeep.

WRECK?!?!? His jeep!  I guess he doesn’t think the jeep is wrecked right now!

I guess wreck is relative, Fuzzy.

Oh!Wrecker Dad’s good friend came out with his wrecker (Dub’s Towing)

Rising

and hooked onto the roll bar….lifted it right up!

Up

Dad, Pepper’s Dad, and several of the

Haulersfirewood cutters coming down off the plateau were very impressed at Dub’s Towing.  Not a scratch, or dent on the jeep.  And the jeep didn’t slip once—which is a good thing, because all that water was still roaring away down there and would have sucked the jeep right on in under the road!

ListenGood report, Boomer!  This was an exciting day!

Sleepy

It sure was Fuzzy.  Time for a nap, don’t you think!

Yes I do, Boom.  Yes I do.

Fuzzy and Boomer

 

Today I Give You the Color Red–Wednesday, August 20, 2014

BudWe are ‘truck’n’ right along here.  All the little tykes went home by 5:00 last evening.  Leaving us with just Tally and Linky.  They both had huge dark circles under their eyes, but were still wound-up.

StormTerry was also restless since it was raining and storming and generally nasty….(the above photo is from Sue in Cedaredge, Colorado.  You can see Hart’s Basin on the far left of the photo…Cedaredge on the right hand side of the photo…and the storm which moved from the Uncompahgre Plateau (Un-come-pah-gray—accent on the pah) over the top of us  toward the towns of Hotchkiss and Paonia.

StudyJolyne is now here…(all the way from Grand Prairie, Canada).  Jolyne will be marrying Evan, our son, in three weeks.  Terry and the little girls thought it was time to see Aunt Jolyne (almost aunt :) ) so we took off to visit them for a short spell.

the-color-red.jpg

After which ice cream was in order.

Today we must take a huge shopping trip to Grand Junction, Colorado, for parts for the hay swather and a door for the garage.  Our time is ‘flying by’.  We are in the middle of the week…even the little girls are saying the time is going to quickly.

Time has a way of doing that doesn’t it? Flying by…but only when you are having fun.  I’ve had time crawl…but not right now, not this week, nor today.

For today we will enjoy each and every second!

Your friend,

Linda

 

 

So Far So Good and a Guest Post—Tuesday, August 19, 2014

MoreThe sleep-over part of the sleep-over went well.  After lots and lots of running and playing.

Linky and her BFF, Ellie, practiced their archery off and on all afternoon and evening—everyone settled down around 10:00 p.m.  (I know that’s late, but it is the last week of Summer, and they are at Grammy’s and heck…why not ?! :) )

By mid-night we heard not a sound.  I crept slowly upstairs to see what might be going on…playing on IPads…?  Sleeping?

Moon-5

Sleeping.Getting-dryThe pinto beans are on their last water of the season.  The pods are getting dry, which means the beans have reached their full size.  This last water will help the beans finish filling out.

Then we wait until all the leaves dry up.  Once that happens it will be time…pinto bean harvest will begin.

My Guest today is Red Door Coop.  She sent me a double rainbow which occurred in July! Alli is also from Colorado, but she lives on ‘the other side of the mountains’…the eastern slope of Colorado.  Drop over and give her a comment, if you have time!

Your Friend on a Western Colorado Farm

Linda

Fall has Arrived —Monday, August 18, 2014

YumThe summer birds are leaving….gradually one group by another is flying away from our farm to locals further south.

The Robins left early, going in sometime in July.  Then the Orioles emptied the the sugar feeds and left. I have not seen a Western Meadowlark for  ever so long; the blackbirds swooped down into the feeders early one morning then took off in a cloud.  I will have to wait until spring to see and hear them again. :)

Breakfast-1

It won’t be long before the Swallows fly.  The last of the babies are ready to fledge any moment.  I hope I can capture the ‘gathering’ as they swoop and settle on the electric wires waiting for all the other swallows to gather with them.

Up

So far the Hummingbirds are still here.  I am so glad!  They bring me joy as they buzz and  hum while I weed and water.

Then one day last week the owls came back….singing their night songs as they hunted for mice in the fields.  The crows and raves are letting me know they are here also and they really DO like black sunflower seeds.

Fall has arrived.

The trees are starting to sport yellow mixed in among the green, the weeds are turning woody and going to seed even if they are only ankle high…they know.  Time is running out.

Necter

My garden is still blooming well, the seeds have not started appearing.  Which is good.  I’m not ready for winter.

Today the little girls are going to have a sleep over—the schools in Delta start on Wednesday, but the schools in Craig don’t start until next Monday. There is much sadness as this leaving.  So in a great burst of compassion I asked if they would like to have one best friend each to spend the night tonight.  (I hope this Grammy is up to it)  I will take the best friends home sometime after lunch tomorrow.

IMG_4447

Wish me luck, it’s been a mighty long time since I’ve had sleep over’s at our house.  Can you just hear it now….chattering until Mid-night…lots of giggles and whispers!

Your friend,

Linda

An Enchanted Summer–Sunday, August 17, 2014

CosmosWe have had the most unusual summer…

PathWe have had visitors from near and far,

Pink-and-whiteW have raced through forests and witnessed local towns annual celebrations, watched exotic dancers with barefeet dance and veils plus swirls of skirts on extremely hot pavement at the Farmer’s Market in Grand Junction.

RedWe’ve wept at the loss of grandchildren moving from ‘just next to us’ to a town three hours away.

Smells-yummyWe’ve been guests at our local racetrack as we watched a long-time friend and his family race to the finish line, often times in first place.

SurpriseThis week we are nearing the end of summer. (Summer always ends when school starts :) )

The two youngest grandchildren, the two granddaughters will stay with us just before school starts for them.  It is our last full week of the little tykes then their lives will begin with large brush strokes of ‘being the new kid in the classroom’ and first time (for Bladen) on the Middle School Football Team–“Go Bull Dogs”

WildGrandpa and I will help them collect memories of ‘life on the farm—on a fine summer day’ as much as we can.

ZinniaThen on Friday they return to Craig, Colorado, and we begin again to prepare for harvest.

TurningThe pinto beans leaves are starting to turn yellow.  Possibly one more irrigation then we will be done for another season with the pinto beans.  Terry is working on the bean combine (I help here and there—‘come hold this bolt, or lift up on the auger’ — you know stuff like that.

And he is getting the hay swather ready to go…the pinto beans and the last cutting of hay will happen very close together.  In-between there are hay customers, weeds to pull and now the house across the field, of which I need to mow, water, weed and take a paint brush to here and there.

We are very lucky, Terry and I! Family and friends have filled our days.  Soon our son will be getting married and we will welcome a new member.  The harvest will begin and my canning will finally be done.

In the evening we will continue to sit outside, as the evening slowly changes into dusk, then dark watching the multitude of twinkling stars.  The next day we will begin again.

As each of you will do!

Your friend,

Linda

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Adventures of Fuzzy and Boomer—Under a Timeless Sky

IdyllicIt was a beautiful idyllic day.

Resting-under-the-truck

Just close your eyes and imagine, with Boomer and me,…a timeless scene on a very rural farm somewhere, anywhere, the perfect place, with lovely crops growing lush and green, the sky a serenely blue– dotted with huge fluffy clouds.

Boomer-readyNearby, Boomer is resting on the cool stones of the patio, almost asleep, but keeping an eye on Mom who is feeding the wild birds. Back and forth she goes…moving here and there…back and forth, back and……………….fffoooooooooorth.Dozing

I’m resting under the pick-up truck …gradually, ever so gradually my eyes are closing…time is unfettered allowing……………….ahhhhhhhhh

ZZZZZZZZZZZZZzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

Suddenly I hear Mom say!

“Up Boys, we need to get up to the sweet corn patch before it gets too hot!  Today is the day to pick, freeze and can sweet corn!”

“UP!”

“Let’s go!”

ooomp, snort, uck!!!! Sputter!

We are up and ready to go!

Wagging our tails has hard as we can (I only have a tiny stump but it wags just fine, Thank you) we follow Mom to the back of the pick-up truck and wait while she unlocks the tail gate.  Then she first lifts me up…I’m always first!  Always!  I’m the oldest and the smartest and the First at all things ….always!  Then she picks up Boomer and puts him in the back.  (She has to pick up Boomer so he doesn’t hurt his knee again.  Remember his knee blew out a while back.  It’s healed now, but Mom doesn’t want ‘another’ accident to happen to his knee)

OffWe are OFF!

Corn-2

First bunch!  (I thought Mom said we were going up to the sweet corn patch BEFORE it got hot!)

My heavens, this is miserable…pant, pant, slurp, pant, pant

“You boys want down?”

Corn-1

What!?!?! You kidding?  You put us down and we might have to walk home. It’s hot already…I’m not walking home in this heat!

“We are almost done, Guys! Only a few more, I can see the end of the row finally.”

Hey, Fuzzy! I’m glad it’s only 6 in the morning, it’s hot already.  Can you imagine what 9 or 10 would have been like?

Mom’s just as hot as us, Boom.  We’ll just stick it out a little longer I can’t imagine she will continue to stay out here.

DONE!!!  Yippee!  Heading home again!

Hey, Fuzz!

Yeah?

Who cares if it was hot…the ride up and back is just the

BEST!!!

WheeeeeYou got that right, Boomer!

You gotta do a little sweat’n to have a whole lot of fun!

Fuzzy

 

The Poetry of Life–Thursday, August 14, 2014

We received a call from our daughter in Grand Junction, Colorado and her husband asking if we would like a small break to go on a Four-Wheeler ride on Grand Mesa. (Grand Mesa is the largest flat-topped mountain in the world)

Would we!!!?

Packing a lunch, our jackets, and my camera (of course :) ) we were ready to go.

It wasn’t long before they arrived pulling a trailer which would fit three four-wheelers and the extra four-wheeler in the back of his pick-up truck!

WHEEE!  We were off!

Up-1Grand Mesa is a special place to me.  My brother and I grew up in Eckert, Colorado. Close to the base of Grand Mesa.  Many a time our parents and grandparents would ”head up the mountain’ for a day, or a couple of days and nights, or more.

PathSummers always included times on Grand Mesa.

OnwardToday there are many, many more people on this huge flat top mountain than when we were growing up.  But having more people enjoying ‘the mesa’ brings with it other things than just crowds.  It brings groups of people who band together to create trails for backwoods enthusiasts; off road vehicles, hikers, and fishermen. The winter has cross-country skiers and snow machiners testing their skills.

Rezacks(Cliff and Kimberly Rezak)

We ate lunch at Trickle Park Reservoir, after which we headed back to every day life.

Silly

My goofy husband!

Joy can be sparked by the most simple of delights, don’t you agree?

A day off from the ‘every day of life’ is just so —- well, refreshing.  Life isn’t about mastering everything in it…Life is an adventure.  Some days you just have to experience something vastly different from the ordinary, for the ordinary to be more than just idling along.

Here is my wish for you today—I wish that each one of you can experience that feeling of the wind in your hair, music blasting on the radio, you singing along at the top of your voice–not caring if you are in tune —just feeling the music, the wind and the simple delight of being alive!

Or anything that is slightly different for your regular day.  Something that lifts you right into that other place of refreshment and a feeling of great pleasure and happiness!

Your friend,

Linda

 

 

 

Marianne’s New York Farm—Wednesday, August 12, 2014

ManyTerry and I were talking last evening trying to figure out how many hummingbirds we have now…it’s extremely hard to tell.  Lots and lots of them that is for sure.  I’m going through nine feeders a day.

So you would think I could get a good photo or two of the little flying jewels, but nope.

Another long time blog friend, Marianne, took some really good photos of the hummers at her farm in the state of New York: Northviewdairy.blogspot.com.  She is a first time grandma and lucky to have the little tyke and her mom and dad right there in the wonderful, large, and roomy farmhouse.  So when the parents are out at their day jobs…Marianne and Ralph get the baby ‘all to their selves’!!!!

Yesterday, Marianne captured a really fun photo post of a Momma hare and her teenaged bunny!  Head over and check it out…farming in a world of rich green loveliness!

Another of your farming friends,

Linda