Friday, July 30, 2010

Headed west.

Just like the trains here travel West, so am I tonight.

Headed home to the ranch.

Clint tells me tomorrow we'll be sorting bulls out of the Spring cows, and sorting the Fall heavies off so they can be watched as they get closer to calving.

Hopefully I can snag a few pictures along the way.

I hope each of your weekends finds you connected with family and friends, and linked with laughter!

Thursday, July 29, 2010

To care.

I am not perfect - far from it.

I try my best - but fail in ways daily.

I talk to loud. I speak to fast.

I'll turn the corner, and run someone over with my words.

But it's not about perfection.

It's about trying, and striving and working hard.

With a great team of people around you - they don't expect perfection.

They expect persistence and effort.

They expect you to be there. To try. To give it your all.

And to care.

And I'm finding that I care. A lot. As much as I did before.

I was a little afraid I wouldn't find that here - but I have.

And it feels great.

The Buffalo/Sherman County FSA Staff

Front - Mandy, Karen, Mona, Jolene

Middle - Peggy, Julie C., Sharon, Me, Julie L., Bridgette

Back - Ryan, Jerry, Annette, Jean

*Jerry, Ryan & Jolene handle farm loans - The rest of us handle the farm programs.

Monday, July 26, 2010


The music blares.

"Keep your hands up! I want to see those knees high!!!", encourages the instructor.

You want to give up.

You want to drop your hands.

You want the music to s.t.o.p.

But you don't give up.

You keep your hands up, the knees high, and your hips keep shaking to the music.

And in the end, the effort is worth it. It just is.


We were blessed to help Clifford & Yvonne (Clint's "Gramps" and "Gram") celebrate their 67th wedding anniversary this weekend.

67 years people!

67 years of marriage, love, children, work, homes and family.

Trials, blessings, laughter and love.

67 years of keeping the hands up, knees high, and the music going.

And if you ask them, they'll say it was all worth it.

(Back - Siblings Dave, Sheryl & Milt Front - Yvonne & Clifford)

These two are pretty amazing - and pretty funny.

But watch out - they play a mean game of cards.

Congratulations Gramps & Gram!

holy experience

400. Small gifts.

401. Shaking, jumping, stomping, moving.

402. Phone calls.

403. The drive home to a 3 day weekend.

404. Dinner at Milt & Laura's.

405. Laughter...uncontrollable laughter.

406. Singing.

407. Warnings.

408. Ice cubes.

409. The mist from the lawn sprinkler as I skirt around the edges of it.

410. The clothesline.

411. Dinner on the BBQ - and fewer dishes to wash because of it.

412. Jace crackin' the bull whip.

413. The dew tickling my bare toes.

414. Cool evening breezes.

415. A Sunday nap together on the couch.

416. Leo, the puppy.

417. A baby shower invitation.

418. Good examples.

419. And Gramps & Gram said they'll host the dinner for the next couple who has their 67th....we said it was a bet!

Thursday, July 22, 2010

The drive home.

There are many things to be thankful for on my drive home each Thursday (on my short weeks) or Friday (on my long weeks).

1. I am headed home!

2. Most roads in Nebraska are straight.

3. The first 2 hours of my drive are freeway - and there is a Sonic about an hour into my drive - and I always visit it.

4. After I leave the freeway at Keystone, and start heading through the hills, I pass The Haythorn Ranch.

While the Haythorn is known all over for their horses, last week I stopped for their Longhorns.....

and their haystacks....

Most ranches have moved to baling hay in round bales (and the Haythorn does too), but they also still put up bunch hay with teams of draft horses.

5. When I make the turn north at Hyannis, it's only a half hour until home!

And home - well, it's where the heart is.

And also where my husband is.


"There's nothing half so pleasant as coming home again.”
- Margaret Elizabeth Sangster


Have a great weekend everyone - at home, at Chief Joseph Days, or wherever this weekend takes you!

Wednesday, July 21, 2010


This is what the meadow Clint was swathing in this weekend looked like after lunch (or dinner, as they say here) on Saturday....

And this, well this, is what the same field looked like at 6:00 that same day.

Because in between, this happened.....

All because of these....

And some dual rods and rims that didn't want to stay in place.

And me, well.....

How many hands does it take to run an air gun, right?

Just joking, I did help a little.

(It's old fashioned, but it drives Dave nuts when I try to do "men" work. So sometimes, it's easier to stand back and let the guys do the work.)

Sunday morning everything was back in line, and the guys hit it hard again.

Because when it's haying season...well, you hay as hard as you can!

Tuesday, July 20, 2010


I have a funny story for you today.

The funny story is that I only lost a 1/2 pound this week!

Ha, ha! Isn't that hilarious?!?

Ok, it isn't funny.

Not funny at all.

In fact, pretty disappointing.

But, it's the truth (sadly) and I'm working to make this week a better weight loss week....

without chips and queso from Taco John's...

or homemade tonkatsu pork....

or crazy bread from Little Caesar's.

Darn that fast food.

But I'm keeping the TCBY yogurts, I tell ya.

How can only 120 calories taste so good!?!


Monday, July 19, 2010


Man, last week seemed to fly by.

(Which is a blessing in and of itself.)

I think I'm starting to get settled into this new routine....

Work is still great, and the work day flies by. Then by the time I've hit the Y and grabbed dinner, the evening is over.

I was pretty worried about having a lot of time on my hands after work and feeling homesick, but thankfully not to much of that yet.

Unfortunately, this weekend flew by just as fast.

The time at home just doesn't seem like enough when Sunday afternoon rolls around.

But my 4 hour drive back to Kearney passes by pretty quickly when I have a good book to read.

(Umm, don't tell my mom or the state patrol I read and drive. I made the mistake of telling Mel I did that and the look of horror on her face was as expected. I should have known better.)

But I did get Jane Kirkpatrick's "A Mending at the Edge" - the last book in the "Change and Cherish Historical Series" finished! I do so love her books and writing style. Next up: "An Absence So Great"

(Yes, the library here in Kearney has Jane's books - wahoo!)


The guys have been baling meadow hay all this week and weekend, and I think they're beginning to feel like they're making some headway after a slower than normal start.

But as it is with any type of farming, machinery has a tendency to break down - or in our case, get stuck.

And this weekend was no exception!

Later this week I'll post more pictures of them haying - and tell you about the crazy ground we have here - sometimes you're on top of sod that is just floating on top of the aquifer.

Have a great Monday - here's to each of us finding more "routine" too!

holy experience

380. Evening classes at the Y.

381. All of the great amenities in Kearney.

382. Lunch with co-workers.

383. The sense of "family" at the office.

384. Phone calls to Clint at night.

385. Air conditioning. (Was it ever hot & humid here this week!)

386. Busy-ness.

387. Meeting the other CED's I'll work with here in the district.

388. The HyVee deli - so many choices!

389. Getting into a routine.

390. Good conversations with new friends.

391. An unexpected and great phone call with my good friend (and old college roommate) Becky - thanks for calling!

392. Being able to catch up effortlessly.

393. Smooth travels home.

394. Longhorns, hay stacks and harvesting crews headed north - all great things to look at on the way home.

395. A husband who stayed up until I got home.

396. An afternoon spent with Clint - even if we were working on the swather.

397. Finishing laundry, dinner and dishes in time for a quick snuggle and a part of a movie.

398. A short Sunday afternoon nap. (It's amazing what a 30 minute nap can do for me!)

399. Settling back in and starting a fresh week.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Thursday thought.

“Your time is limited, so don't waste it living someone else's life.

Don't be trapped by dogma - which is living with the results of other people's thinking.

Don't let the noise of other's opinions drown out your own inner voice.

And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition.

They somehow already know what you truly want to become.

Everything else is secondary.”

~ Steve Jobs

Tuesday, July 13, 2010


We're still on the wagon.

Kristi's in the lead (Mel won't weigh herself until the end of the month) but the game's not over yet.

(But I'm so glad Kristi's doing so well!)

I weighed in this morning at 201.1 lbs.

Still doing Zumba every night at the Y - I look pretty silly, but it's a lot of fun and such a good workout. And the best part is the 45 minutes are over before you know it!


Now this post is titled the way it is for a reason -

This weekend when I was home at the ranch, Mel kept asking me if I wanted to try her rhubarb cobble! Or, how about a piece of cake? A soda?

And so tonight when I was looking up how to spell sabotage in the dictionary, I saw it's defined as:

Any underhand interference with production, work, etc., in a plant, factory, etc., as by enemy agents during wartime or by employees during a trade dispute.

Mel's going to have to add "enemy agent" to her resume. :)

Monday, July 12, 2010


Welcome to the ranch.

The Bunkhouse

{home for now}

The boxes aren't all unpacked, but we're getting settled in.

Work last week was great - I couldn't ask for a better start and staff.

And after multiple thunderstorms, the guys are finally getting some hay put up.

(But more thunderstorms are headed this ball size hail anyone?)

We're living simply. Loving whole heartedly.

But to be honest, I'm still trying to adjust.

Things are different here. Not better, not worse...just different.

But it will all be worth it - and it is worth it.

holy experience

360. Simple living.

361. Fire flies.

362. Walks around a new neighborhood.

363. An awesome staff to work with.

364. Sonic diet limeades after work. (There's one a few blocks from my office - I think God is looking out for me.)

365. Flowers to greet me on my first day. (I told you they were an awesome staff!)

366. Phone calls from friends.

367. Phone calls from Clint.

368. A week at work that flew by.

369. A weekend at home.

370.Sunsets on the drive home to the ranch at the end of the week.

371. Sunday dinners (that's lunch to us from the west coast!).

372. Sabotage :)

373. Chains & tow cables.

374. A swather "unstuck".

375. Zumba.

376. A new and fabulous apartment for Lindsay.

377. More Sonice diet limeades. (I've been drinking a lot of them - only 25 calories!)

378. Friendships.

379. Making it work.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Let the games begin.

I've been talking about losing weight for awhile now.

And instead of losing, I've just been gaining.

I don't think I realized how heavy I'd gotten until I was looking through the pictures Lindsay took at our wedding ceremony and realized that while I loved the pictures, I was NOT thrilled about how I looked in them.


Last weekend amidst the chaos of moving, myself and two new family members made a bet.

$20 bucks each a month.

Winner at the end of the month takes the pot.

First one to 15 pounds lost wins a prize.

The games continue until we're each at our target weight.


The first weigh in was yesterday.

(204.4 pounds)

Oofta. Yuck.

My goal is to get to 160 by June 18th, 2011 and be totally comfortable with the way I look in my wedding pictures next year.

Will you encourage me (and the others)?

Friday, July 2, 2010

We made it!

Thanks to all of you for your good wishes....they meant a lot.

Now we're off to unpack boxes, hook up the washer & dryer, and get this house moved into.

I'll post pictures later.

Have the BEST weekend!