Thursday, March 31, 2011

quote of the day

"I have friends in overalls whose friendship I would not swap for the favor of the kings of the world."

- Thomas A. Edison

And yes, this is my very good friend wearing her overalls. :)

Monday, March 28, 2011

Above Rubies

All these came from a Bible study that I'm helping to lead. We went through Proverbs 31 verse by verse and came up with character traits of a Proverbs 31 woman. Then we each wrote a letter to a woman who we thought exemplified a Proverbs 31 woman.

A Proverbs 31 women is:

~Concerned for others ~effective worker ~physically healthy ~helps her husband to succeed ~cares for her home and family ~plans ahead ~capable ~productive ~good steward ~good judgement ~wise with money and business ~strong character ~not lazy ~dignity ~brings prosperity ~diligent ~industrious ~skilled ~craft-y ~good cook ~provides for her family ~excellent ~charitable ~discreet ~honored ~precious ~noble ~hard to find ~from the Lord ~trustworthy ~focused ~purposeful ~compassionate ~prepared ~nurturing ~encouraging ~kind ~watches her tongue ~chaste~

~She is these things because~

~She Fears the Lord~

Sunday, March 27, 2011

An Excuse

I've been 'cramming' for the driver's test which I will hopefully do this week. :gasp: I haven't been driving a whole lot, so I've been driving about every day for the last couple of days. With the way gas prices have been and where they are going, we have to have an excuse and destination when driving. Today we decided to go to Joann's. ^_^ The next ball theme is 'Count of Monte Cristo' so it's a little bit darker of a theme. Bwahaha! But there was a little problem - both of the regency dresses that I have are lighter, more summer-y. Uh-oh. So we found the excuse that we were looking for. I new exactly what I wanted. Something black and burgundy with maybe a damask print. If the dress was all black, it would look like a mourning dress. And I can't exactly pull off a red dress (the image that it gives isn't what I want to exude). I found exactly what I wanted. People sound surprised when I say that I found what I wanted at Joann's. Honestly though - you just can't be dead set on what you want. Then you'll be pleasantly surprised when things actually work out. :) This is the fabric that I found: And I have way too many jewelry choices. This is a very good thing. :)

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

The Open Milk Machine

I don't know what is prompting me to post this. Actually... I do. Wink I was talking with a friend, and she is looking for reasons to NOT get a milk cow. A couple years ago, I had written a lovely little piece that I lovingly call "The Open Milk Machine" parodying Stephen Crane's "Open Boat." Having some experience in the area of milking bovine, and having recently jumped into the whole milking thing (at the time) - many of these blunders were rather fresh in my mind. Yes, they have all happened - just not in one milking session - they have been super condensed for entertainment purposes.

So without further ado, I give you, "The Open Milk Machine"

:cue melodramatic music:

It was a bleak morning, yet the milk maid was up hours before the sun and bundled in layers of coats. She had no hope of seeing the sunrise this morning; it was the dead of December. As she tramped out to the milking parlor, she had to make another trail through the snow, for during the silent night, the clouds brought several feet of new snow- erasing all traces of previous paths. When she finally got to the milking parlor, she realized that the power had gone out yet again, while she was tramping through the snow. So she hooked up the generator and prayed that there would be enough gas, since it was almost empty from the previous night.

She went out to fetch the cows. To her horror, the calf got out of his enclosure, found his mom, and nursed her until she was almost completely dry.
“My goodness, cow! My goodness, cow! My goodness, cow! That is the last time I trust my brother to take care of the calf!” the milk maid cried. The heifer looked back with an unfeeling glance and continued chewing her cud; she knew that her baby was meant to stay with her even if the humans believed otherwise. The milk maid finally shooed the calf back into his stall, and she resumed to the next step of her routine: getting the two heifers into the milking parlor. The girls refused to exit the pasture until the milk maid enticed them with some grain, then they slipped on some frozen mud but saved themselves. Cows have a natural sense of balance that enables them to do such things.

With the cows finally in their stanchions, the milk maid continued her chore. She washed down the cows’ udders with a rag, applied a cleaner, and cleaned it off with a special wipe. Next the mastitis test. The big cow tested negative, but the mother cow came positive.

“What am I to do? What am I to do? What am I to do? We cannot drink this milk, but I hate wasting it! I will just have to milk her completely dry and look up remedies in the books. . . A vet would not even be able to come out because we are snowed in! Oh, what am I to do about this?”

The first cow to be milked was the mother cow who was almost dry anyway. With the air so cold, the milk machine refused to behave or work properly. There was no suction on the lid to keep it from falling to the depths of the concrete parlor floor; the attachment for the pulsating motion barely worked. When the milking of the first cow was almost complete – ten minutes longer than normal because of the malfunctioning machine – the cow started kicking and snagged the vacuum tube between her hooves and pulled the hose apart from the machine. Scrambling to save the precious milk from the ravages of the foot, the milk maid finally yanked the tube from the hooves, but it was covered in poop, mud and soggy straw.

Once she had the pipe back on the machine and was finishing the first cow, the machine stopped working all together. No amount of bumping, tweaking, or manipulating could help the engine – it was simply too cold. She just heaved a heavy sigh, continued her work, and began pouring the milk from the machine into the milk jars. As she was tipping the canister over to put the milk into its final resting place, her cold fingers slipped and dumped half of the white gold all over the work table and floor. The cow only gave two pints. To the point of tears, she bit her lip and trudged on, just as the generator gasped for fuel.

The next cow would have to be hand milked, so the milk maid found an empty pail and began. Slowly, slowly, slowly the bucket began to fill up – even though the cow thought that it would be entertaining to swish her tail into the milk maid’s face after every five to eight squirts. After the bucket had about three cups in it, the cow lifted her tail and deposited a meadow muffin* right next to the milk maid’s head. The poop splattered everywhere, and the milk maid was covered in it. She pulled the bucket out from underneath the cow, cleaned it and herself off as best she could, scooped up the mess with a shovel, and poured what milk she did get through a strainer into the jars.

As she continued milking, the heifer was constantly kicking and jerking – nearly kicking the bucket over – but one of the kicks, the milk maid missed, and the foot landed right in the bucket. Just as the milk maid was about to faint in utter shock and disdain, one of her brothers came and was going to ask if she needed any help, but, upon seeing the state that she was in, skulked away to give her some space seeing that she needed to let off some of the vexation that had built up all morning.

“A whole bucket ruined! My father was right when he said that I would have to survive through January before I could call myself a real milk maid!” When she finally did finish milking, she only had about a gallon to show for her work - when the cows normally gave about three gallons – because of all of the accidents this particular morning.

Her brother came back and offered to put the cows into the pasture again, and she was grateful, never wanting to see those two again for the rest of the day. As she was sterilizing the machine with scalding hot water (she now had electricity again because her father found some more gasoline for the generator), she overshot the spout and hit her hand with the blistering water. Writhing in pain and agony she gasped to continue her work which seemed futile and pathetic at this point. With the machine put back together and the cows in the pasture, she dragged herself back to the house where her cold breakfast was waiting for her. She would have to come back out that evening to repeat the whole process again.

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Bless yo' beautiful hide!

I'm tired. Why? I got home after midnight - after truly dancing the night away at the Seven Brides for Seven Brothers ball. All I did we add a ruffle to a denim skirt that I already had. :) And I 'borrowed' a friend's cowboy hat during one of the dances. ;D

And she made her dress just for this ball! I love how it turned out! ^_^

A family portrait that I took. You'll see the spoof a little later.

The barn for the barn dance is filled with dancers!

Haha!!! xD I think this captures their personalities better. ;D



Going dancin, going dancin!

The empty dance floor, just before the party began. :D

The inside of the dome was painted by some vagabonds that were allowed to sleep here back in the 30's.

We jumped back to the 1800's really quick for a photo op.

I'd like to see you try to get your hat back. :P

Manly men

Okay, I can explain this... I like to get pictures of things looking straight up. But I like to get them via not so orthodox methods. This is the shot that I got:

Now "Bless Your Beautiful Hide" is stuck in my head. ;D

Friday, March 4, 2011

Redneck farm kids


in the Marine Corps

Dear Ma and Pa,

I am well. Hope you are.. Tell Brother Walt and Brother Elmer the Marine Corps beats working for old man Minch by a mile. Tell them to join up quick before all of the places are filled.

I was restless at first because you get to stay in bed till nearly 6 a.m.. But I am getting so I like to sleep late. Tell Walt and Elmer all you do before breakfast is smooth your cot, and shine some things. No hogs to slop, feed to pitch, mash to mix, wood to split, fire to lay.

Practically nothing.

Men got to shave but it is not so bad, there's warm water. Breakfast is strong on trimmings like fruit juice, cereal, eggs, bacon, etc., but kind of weak on chops, potatoes, ham, steak, fried eggplant, pie and other regular food, but tell Walt and Elmer you can always sit by the two city boys that live on coffee. Their food, plus yours, holds you until noon when you get fed again. It's no wonder these city boys can't walk much.

We go on 'route marches,' which the platoon sergeant says are long walks to harden us. If he thinks so, it's not my place to tell him different. A 'route march' is about as far as to our mailbox at home. Then the city guys get sore feet and we all ride back in trucks.

The sergeant is like a school teacher. He nags a lot. The Captain is like the school board. Majors and colonels just ride around and frown. They don't bother you none.

This nextonewillkill Walt and Elmer with laughing. I keep getting medals for shooting. I don't know why.. The bulls-eye is near as big as a chipmunk head and don't move, and it ain't shooting at you like the Higgett boys at home. Al l you got to do is lie there all comfortable and hit it. You don't even load your own cartridges They come in boxes.

Then we have what they call hand-to-hand combat training. You get to wrestle with them city boys. I have to be real careful though, they break real easy. It ain't like fighting with that ole bull at home. I'm about the best they got in this except for that Tug Jordan from over in Silver Lake .. I only beat him once... He joined up the same time as me, but I'm only 5'6' and 130 pounds and he's 6'8' and near 300 pounds dry.

Be sure to tell Walt and Elmer to hurry and join before other fellers get onto this setup and come stampeding in.

Your loving daughter, Alice