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Saturday, September 13, 2014

Home Alone


We are well into day three of five that Sebron is out of town. He flew to NC on Wednesday for a friend’s wedding. I’m so happy he was able to go. By the time he gets home Monday night he’ll have seeing some good friends, his Dad, Mom and step-Dad, my parents and a couple of his college buddies.

We’ve been surviving here on the home front, although we all feel a bit lost without Daddy. We’ve spent our mornings over at the new house working on different painting projects and bringing small loads over.

Our currant house on the prairie is at that wonderful moving stage of half empty and always a mess. I brought half the kids toys over to the new place so they’ve been entertained while I paint. The carpet went in and the upstairs looks so great!

Jancsi came down out of the blue with a bad cold the other day and it hit Laughter like a ton of bricks last night. I put her to bed at 7pm as usual and she was fine. By 8pm she was congested and up crying. I was up with her until 3am. She was so worked up and upset. I tried her sleeping with me but she was only happy for a few minutes. She didn’t want to be rocked, and just cried nonstop until she finally dozed off at 3…. What a helpless feeling to lay there, listening to your baby crying and crying- and nothing you do soothes her. I’m exhausted to say the least. Ha

I was planning a fun day to the zoo, but instead we put a first coat of paint on the new kitchen, took good naps and are currently watching Toy Story. Fall came to Texas for a few days and I’ve had the AC turned off and windows open. It’s been glorious! I woke up this morning to 53 degrees! Both kids requested jeans and long sleeves. Oh to have a comfy pair of jeans that fit! Lol soon enough! Jancsi asked me why I was in shorts today… “Well because I don’t have a pair of pants that fit well right now.” “Why?” “Because of my big belly.” “How is it big?” “Because of Baby Sister in my tummy.” “When she comes will your tummy be little again?” “That’s the plan!” That’s the plan…..

Sebron gets home on Monday and we move that week!

Friday, September 5, 2014

Life at 33 Weeks


“Seven weeks to go people!” I always keep my little gang informed at the breakfast table how much longer we have of this pregnancy. I’m so thankful to be pregnant, but I can’t wait to have her here

I’m feeling big at the moment. Just that clumsy, hard to get up off the floor type feeling.

The trees along the roadside are a chalky white from the constant dust from trucks and passing livestock trailers. September is here but the relentless Texas heat continues. I long for Fall and cooler days.

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Shortly after the dairy closed, we were offered a job on a ranch back in the little town we originally moved to from North Carolina. Leaning Oak Ranch actually backs right up to the far hayfield of the first ranch we lived and worked on. We met the owners that first week of living in Texas- they came riding up on their four wheelers looking for one of their bulls that had escaped. We ended up talking for awhile and the next day they brought us a big bag of their homegrown peaches. A-mazing!
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Celebrating the start to our 3rd trimester! 27 weeks!
Sebron actually started working for them one day a week that first winter. They run a registered Black Angus as well as commercial operation. I love how God works because before they knew about our situation with the dairy, they had been getting this plan together to bring us on full time (unknown to us). At the same time, the people who were currently renting the house on their property left to live in town.

We debated not moving and just having Sebron commute back and forth but the ranch is 30 minutes from where we are now. We also took into consideration me being alone with three children, a new baby and a good hour drive from anywhere. With our list of pros and cons and lots of prayer we decided it would be best to move to the house on the new ranch.
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29 weeks.
We’ve been fixing and painting it for the past month. Like I said before- we were supposed to be moving in September 1st, but it’s looking like it will be the week of the 15th. New carpet for the upstairs bedrooms is going in the week before so we are trying to get all the painting finished by then. When I say we’re painting, I meant the entire house is being repainted. Living room, dining, kitchen, bathrooms, bedrooms, trim….. It’s proving to be quit the job.
The new house aka Big Red is beautiful. Because of our job, almost all our housing has been on the farm/ranch we’ve worked on. Thankfully we have been blessed to have lived in many nice places. The red house is by far the largest place we’ve ever lived. It’s a four bedroom four bathroom monster with a wrap around porch and garage!  It’s a two story which is new for us, other then when we lived the year with our friends and we had the downstairs.

The kid’s bedrooms are up while the master is down. This will take some getting used to for me as they seem so far away!
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30 weeks.
I’ve been doing a bunch of painting and trying to keep up with two kids. Trying to tape trim and paint while pregnant has been somewhat challenging. Jancsi is usually pretty good. I pack him a bag of toys and he is able to entertain himself for the most part. Laughter is into everything. Paint, climbing stairs and ladders, getting into everything she shouldn’t. I have a large child play area (we call it the cage) but she is only happy in there for so long. Today I also brought her pack and play and after our picnic lunch she actually took a two hour nap in one of the bedrooms while I painted…. It was glorious! It wears me out, but I’d much rather be there doing something then sitting at home.

Seems strange thinking that it was just 8 months ago that we were painting our little house here on the prairie; eagerly awaiting the “okay’ to move in- out of the RV. I’m learning when you follow God, you better be ready for a wild ride!
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32 weeks
So, I’m packing, painting, cleaning and counting down days until we move and Baby gets here. Thankful.

Monday, September 1, 2014

Awesome and Awkward


Awesome:
-We’ll be 33 weeks pregnant this week!! Woot!
-Jancsi asking for real kisses and Eskimo ones!
-Getting almost all three upstairs bedrooms painted at the new house!
-Sweet snuggles with Laughter.
-The never ending conversations with my 3-year-old.
-Being able to crash on the couch in my Man’s arms to watch a movie once the kids are down for the night.

Awkward:
-When your 3 year old walks through a busy store asking over and over (loudly) “Mommy who keeps tooting?”
-When a gentleman at church tells me how little one pregnant friend is while in the same breath tells me how huge I am.
-Trying to paint a bedroom and the 17 month old dumps an entire gallon of paint onto her self and the carpet… it is seriously never ending.
-Being pelted with marbles from the upstairs loft at the new house. So this is what we have to look forward to with a loft overlooking the living room? We’ll have to make a rule on that one.



Happy Labor Day! 

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Thankful Thursday


We spent all last weekend painting over at the house we are moving into. I was hoping for a September 1st move in day, but given the amount of work I see still needs to be done I think it will be later.

The family that lived there before were slightly rough on the poor house. By rough I mean pen, crayon and permanent marker drawn all over walls and kitchen cabinets…. They peeled most of the paint off in the downstairs bathroom, and there are lots of tiles missing in bathrooms. All the carpet upstairs is being replaced and bedrooms being painted as well. There is a lot to do.

Jancsi is much more aware this move. Although we’ve moved him his entire life, this is the first time he is starting to understand. He has been asking a lot of questions about things we are taking and what if we leave this or that. The other day when I brought boxes home from the barn he began to frantically throw all his toys into them. He was in a bit of a panic thinking we were leaving that minute and heaven forbid his treasures get left. Poor guy. I try to listen to all his questions and worries and put them all to rest, assuring him we are taking EVERYTHING with us.

He was allowed to pick out his own bedroom in the new house- which he decided in a span of maybe 5 minutes after going to each one and saying “I think this one!” “No I think this one!” “Or maybe this one!” He is getting a slightly blue room once it’s painted and he could not be more excited!

Things I am thankful for this Thursday:
  1. Reaching 31 weeks of pregnancy!
  2. A beautiful wrap around porch to enjoy at the new house.
  3. The nearing of the end of August and the beginning of a new month. (One month closer to Baby Girl’s arrival!)
  4. The scent of freshly mowed hay.
  5. Big green round bales out my window.
  6. Good walks each morning with the Littles!
  7. The privilege of making dinner tonight for a friend who recently had her baby. (The first of the four women in our church!)

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Flying


Everyone who knows me, knows I do not like to fly. Like I dread it for days and the morning of I’m always sick to my stomach. Pathetic I know. Flying with children is difficult and yet a positive for me. They distract me from bumps and turns as I try to entertain. =)

We are not a technical family (I hear some of you laughing right now), so no ipods or ipads to keep kids busy on trips. It’s just me, two kids and my very pregnant belly, squished into a tiny row, next to a complete stranger that I can only pray is alright with us for 2.5 hours…..

Our flight from Dallas to Charlotte left on time, but they didn’t let me board early with the kids. Normally when you travel with children they let you board early to get all your stuff situated before the masses of other fliers get on. Not this time. I had to board with my zone….. which was the last zone to be called….which means the plane was full by the time I even started down the little boarding tunnel thing.

And of course I do all carry-ons because I’m cool and thrifty like that. =) So I’m waddling done those teeny aisles trying to keep up with my three year old and keep my 16 month old’s (who’s on my back) feet from kicking people in the shoulders as we pass. All while trying to push half carry my suitcase and Jancsi’s duffle bag as well as keep my bulky mom bag with all our flying survival gear from swinging off my arm and whacking people in the head.

I try to smile at people as we crash by. They avoid eye contact of any sort and I’m pretty sure they are praying I’m not going to park my circus in their row. There are sighs of relief when I pass. We find our row and thankfully we have a nice older lady who happily reads her book the whole trip.

We do a lot of snacking and staring at the people behind us through the cracks in the chairs. Laughter does a lot of banging on the little drop tables in front of us. She finally crashes into sleep the last 30 minutes of the flight. We start landing and Jancsi starts screaming because his ears hurt. He’s never done this before and we’ve never had a problem with his ears on flights. Of course I’m totally not prepared. He continues to scream at the top of his lungs while I try to hush him. The nice lady offered a piece of gum which I thankfully accepted It’s breath gum and Jancsi complains that it’s spicy. I get him to chew it a few minutes which was enough to pop his ears and give him relief.

The Charlotte airport could not come quick enough for this Mama. We made it and Nana was there to greet us with open arms! Our flight home was the same except I was armed with gum (fun fruity flavors) and we sat on the run way for well over an hour while the airport people got their act together.

Oh flying, I will continue to conquer you!

**Due to our worsening internet out here on the Prairie, my computer will no longer allow me to upload pictures. So I'm afraid until we move, my posts will be photoless. =(

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Thoughts from my couch


I’m sitting here in a quiet house. The kids are bathed and in bed, Sebron is out riding horses with friends- the house is quiet and I’ve been looking forward to blogging all day. Now my chance is here and all I can think of is my bed is calling my name.

Just 10 minutes ago I had screaming children and blood running down my shoulder and smeared across my cheek as I tried comforting little sister when a game of rough housing with older brother became well, too rough. Her little face took a crash to our concrete floor and the concrete won. Her little lip is a sight to be seen. Once I was able to calm her and make sure there was no horrible damage and teeth were in fact still intact, we all read books and then to bed it was. And now, here I sit. 

We are back from two weeks in North Carolina. My parents graciously flew the kids and I out. (More on that soon.) Poor Seeb had to stay here to work and was greatly missed. We are enjoying being back together!

This week we’ve been in recovery mode and taking long naps and trying to get the kids to sleep in passed 5am… dang NC time! Laughter caught a cold out of nowhere our last day and kindly passed it on to me. I think it’s horribly hilarious how when you’re 30 weeks pregnant a simple cold feels like the end of the world. Poor Laughter has had a bad week with her upper lip. Just yesterday she took a nose dive off one of the chairs in our living room.... and now tonight. Concrete-2 Laughter-0. 

We’ve been walking a lot in the mornings and then come home to mow away the jungle that is our yard. The heat is bad but I keep telling myself that this month will be the worst. Get through August and it’s smooth sailing! Oh October come quickly!

We will be moving here in the next short weeks- so please put up with me as my blogging might take a back seat to all that is our life right now.  =)

When we were building this house, I did not see us moving just 7 months later. But I have to remind myself that God is writing our life story….. not me. Change is hard for me and stepping out in faith actually takes faith. So as I begin to pack up our happy home here on the prairie, I ask the Lord for renewed strength daily, faith to follow Him, and joy in the difficult moments. In everything, speak LIFE!

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

This life we have chosen.


This agricultural life is hard. It’s all we’ve ever known since we were married. Farming and ranching is not for the faint of heart. It is not for people who want a Monday through Friday, 8-5 job. It is hard. You work sun up to sun down with a lot of days starting before the sun has risen and finishing long after if has gone to bed. The job is never done. There is always something more to do. Fences to fix, fields to plant, hay to bring in, animals to be fed. I wish I could remember all the nights that work continued on by the light of tractor or truck head beams. It is hard to leave work at work when you get off and come home because, well, it is home.
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Waiting their turn to come in the the milk parlor. 
There are no dress shirts and clean hands, no pressed and ironed kakis or loafers. Just ripped up blue jeans with a tshirt and a pair of your favorite scuffed up boots.  My husband’s hands are hard and rough. He always has a black nail or two and blood blisters. His fingers forever stained and looking perpetually dirty even after my bathroom sink has been put to the test.
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My helpers. 23 weeks along.
You have to be smart. Able to crunch numbers on a whim. Know the feed to weight gain ratio for your livestock. You keep up with sales and bookkeeping. You’re a businessman, a welder, plumber, vet, electrician and mechanic. You know when to plant, when to sell and when to buy. You can be covered in sweat and manure one minute and the next you’re down town, clean, pressed and dressed- addressing potential customers and selling your product.  You’re a jack of all trades. You have to be.
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The milk tank.
It can be lonely, sometimes you go without seeing people except at church on Sundays. You freeze in the winter and fry in the summer. There is no employee of the month or bonuses. Just back braking work and an occasional ‘good job’ pat on the back. Sometimes money runs out and a job ends. So we move again. Another ranch, another farm. Life is hard out here. Tractors brake down and hay gets rained on. Animals die and crops burn in the relentless heat with no rain. No one told us it would be easy. In fact we’ve had several people encourage us to get out. But it’s a part of us. You might say it’s in our blood. Call us crazy but we love it.

Sebron and I have had moments when we talk. What are we doing? We could do something else….. but what?
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It does have its rewards. We fill our plats with food we grew and raised and it fills us with satisfaction and pride almost as much as it fills our belly. There is no feeling like when you haul that last bale of hay to the barn, beating the black storm clouds and rain that have been threatening all day. No reward like when you work to pull a calf and see it stand on it’s own for the first time. The feeling of accomplishment when you stand along a tall field that you plowed and planted with your own hands and prayed each night for rain and are now reaping the harvest. When you load up those cows or pigs you raised from babies to take to market. You come home each night exhausted and yet fulfilled. We are the backbone to society. Some people look down on us. But without us they’d be naked and hungry.  =)

No, agriculture is not for the faint of heart. Sometimes things don’t go as planed. Three other raw dairies in the area opened right after Yellow Rose did. Our milk sales never picked up and we found ourselves throwing out hundreds of gallons of milk a week, or spraying it on the fields. The operation just wasn’t paying for itself. So, last week I said goodbye to the ladies of Yellow Rose Dairy. They were sold to another dairy in West Texas and our last milking was last Sunday evening.
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Saying goodbye.
It was sad to say goodbye. I enjoyed milking, but I also knew it was time. Milking was getting harder and harder since I had to take the kids with me. Trying to keep milkers going, kids and cows happy and keep the kids entertained was a full time exhausting job. I am so grateful for the dairy. It allowed me to help out financially while Sebron was down with his back. But it wasn’t meant to be long term. So Sunday evening I milked for the last time and said goodbye. We still have one Holstein we are milking and giving the milk to the pigs, but I’m only milking on Saturday mornings and when they need me to fill in. It’s not the same.

We are looking for work again as it was the dairy that brought us here to begin with.
I do not know what the Lord has in store for us but I know He will provide and it will be good. We are trusting Him and as always I know He will show Himself Big!