August News



Wednesday, August 29 - Dill Pickle Relish - Our neighbor, Betty, gave us some  large climbing cucumbers. Atlanta peeled them and shredded them for dill relish.    We also found enough cucumbers in our own garden to put up a couple more jars     of garlic dill pickles.

Front Porch Visiting - Aspen and Samantha have lots to talk about.

Afternoon Visitor - I snapped this picture out the sunroom window this afternoon. This skunk was getting a drink in the back yard and hanging around Carolina's playhouse. He was having trouble walking straight, too. He acted like he was sick. Cimarron and Laredo, who had just arrived home from work had to get rid of him.


Monday, August 27 - Sunrise, Sunset - No, you're wrong. This is not an intro to yet another of Windy's endless sunset pictures. This time I'm talking about the play, Fiddler on the Roof, in which our friends the Robert's are involved. All the kids except Stockton traveled to Ft. Worth today to watch the play and visit with friends. They spent part of the day with the Byrds near Decatur before heading into Ft. Worth to grab some supper and see the play. They were all very impressed with what they saw.

Laredo, Ethan and Shelbi Byrd, Samantha Rainey, Carolina, Aspen and Cimarron at "Freebirds", a Ft. Worth restaurant. (no pun intended)

After the show, Eve, Michelle and Rebecca pose with the whole group.


Sunday, August 26 - Doggie Dress Up - Carolina was up to her old tricks again, dressing Gypsy and Coconut up in doll's clothing. They're always so hilarious-looking that I have to grab the camera.


Saturday, August 25 - Birthday Party - We traveled to Tulia for the long-awaited   birthday party for Kayla Alexander. Everyone had a lot of fun.

Cari Hall holds the latest Alexander baby, Elizabeth.

Elaine Phipps and Carolina check out the chocolate fountain.

Beautiful evening views from the Alexander's front yard.

 Here's the party video showing a few other pictures and some of the dancing also.


Friday, August 24 - Fall Garden Planting - Atlanta and Stockton planted a few new seeds today. They're hoping for a second crop of greens and squash.


Unusual Photos from Around the Ranch

Carolina's pretty hair.

Nathan brings hay for the cows in the lot.

But he makes Windy throw it over the fence.

The cattle seem confused. They don't like all this switching about.

Atlanta on the hay bales.

...and now for something totally different...

More sky, more clouds, more sunsets.


Wednesday, August 22 - Visitor from the South - Today Samantha, my cousin's (George Rainey) daughter came for a long visit. She's been coming for the last few years at this time. Her mom, Nancy, brought her and stayed the night before heading back to Lake Buchanan where they live. She's about Aspen's age and they have lots of fun activities planned.

Visitor Going South - Atlanta spotted this vermilion flycatcher on the wheat field fence. He was very brightly colored red-orange and black. I guess he was just stopping by on his way south for the winter. We don't normally have them here.




Monday, August 20 - Crumb Crunchers - Stockton and Carolina had a hankering to make some cookies. They mixed up the dough, cut out the shapes and baked them all by themselves. Of course, Stockton would make fish shapes!


Devotion - Rusty plainly shows his regard for Nathan.

Sunday, August 19 - Welding Panels - Nathan has given the boys an assignment. He wants them to make panels out of the pipe we gathered up during our TXDOT sign job several years ago. They've made 4 already.

The plan is to have enough panels for an arena.


Friday, August 17 - Intensive Reading - Stockton decided to read the book, Michael Vey, a sci-fi thriller with good morals. We had given the book to Laredo for Christmas and now the sequel has come out. I told Stockton to read the first one before the other one arrived. He must have enjoyed it because he had it read in one day.

It appears to be a bit of a nail-biter.

Thursday, August 16 - Welcome Home - Nathan came in the front gate and was greeted by all the dogs. They all want to be petted at once.

Growing Ducks - Back in March the kids bought some ducklings at Tractor Supply in Plainview (see March 31, Ducklings). Now they're about 6 months old, but still fun to hold.


Wednesday, August 15 - Worms - (*W A R N I N G* If you're reading this during your lunch hour, you might want to skip this story.) Carolina and Stockton pooled their money and bought some Red Wigglers. They hope that they'll reproduce and make lots more worms and some worm castings (the super-rich worm leavings that make great garden fertilizer).

I thought hatching eggs coming and going in the mail was unbelievable...can you imagine a sack of worms surviving the U.S. mail?

He already had an old refrigerator, turned on its side, filled with moistened dirt and ready to go.

There they are. 1000 red wrigglers. I warned you.


Monday, August 13 - Cooking School - This was the scene when I looked out the front window this afternoon. Carolina was instructing the dogs on the finer points of mud pie making.

Coconut couldn't resist sampling the pies.


Sunday, August 12 - Unloading the Red Top Cane - Atlanta and the boys helped     Nathan stack the hay in the hay lot. As usual, the little kids (and dogs) were there to "help".

Saturday, August 11 - More Hay - Nathan went back to Clarendon this morning and bought some red top cane hay. He loaded this huge load all by himself. Well, he had a little help from Stockton and Josh, the man who raised the hay.

Friday Evening, August 10 - Mystery Rider - Where is this girl going? She's  pedaling so fast, she must be headed somewhere...

She's wearing a bathing suit. Maybe she's going swimming...

Nope. The guys are unloading the hay. And where there's hay bales, kids are sure to   follow!

Thursday, August 9 - Garden Bounty - With extra cucumbers and tomatoes, we      decided to bring out the dehydrator to preserve some of it for later.

Trays of crispy cucumber slices and juicy halved cherry tomatoes await their turn in the dehydrator.


Monday Morning, August 6 - Beautiful Sunrise over the Horse Lot

Saturday, August 4 - Rare Entertainment - We traveled to Turkey tonight. Not to watch the kids perform, but to watch another very talented girl. Her name is Kera Cruse. She's 11 years old and is the granddaughter of a lady in Turkey that we know, Marie Cruse. She played classical violin pieces and also some popular fiddle tunes. She's won several contests in Ft. Worth and played with the symphony there. We were very impressed. We liked her family, too, a home school family of eight kids.

Thursday, August 2 - Atlanta and Stockton Vacuuming. That's right, vacuuming in the garden. A horde of blister bugs hit our tomato plants in the night. Atlanta read on the internet about vacuuming up the bugs with a shop vac as an organic alternative to chemical sprays. Hey, it's worth a try.

Load of Alfalfa - The boys went to Clarendon today and got this load of hay.         The full moon is rising above it-either that or they also bought a giant pumpkin.

Carolina and Rusty having fun on the hay bales.

Wednesday, August 1 - Nature Pics - A large moth, possibly a tomato moth and a honey bee on Stockton's miniature rose bush. Every day's a new adventure in God's creation.

Carolina's Box Trick - You've probably never heard of it. I hadn't either. Carolina made  this little box for Coconut, her puppy, so she could play in it. Later in the afternoon I came upon this scene. I thought, "How cute, Carolina fell asleep inside her box", and I snapped this picture. Then I pointed out the sleeping Carolina to Aspen. That's when we heard the snickering coming from inside the box...

If you're wondering why there's a giant mattress in this picture...don't ask.



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