Monday, October 28, 2013

A Different Way to Harvest

I don't know about anybody else's kids, but my kids are seasonal toy players.  It makes it nice at times - when they are tired of playing with those toys - it is usually time for a different season.  But it can make it hard when you are asked - "what would your kids like for their birthday or Christmas."  So now that we have been in harvest mode my kids have been playing with tractors, wagons, semis, combines and fire trucks!  Yep that's right - fire trucks.  Earlier this fall when we were combining beans our combine caught fire - it wasn't anything too extreme - we were still able to finish harvesting with the same combine - but enough to have to make a call to the fire department.  It was a Friday and I had just stopped by the field and talked to Jon for a bit.  He had informed me of a small fire they had had that morning - it didn't amount to anything.  I went home and eventually it was time for the boys to get home from school.  They got off the bus and the following conversation happened:
Will, "Mom did you hear about Dad?"
Me, "No, what about your Dad?"
Will, "the whole field was on fire - the fire trucks and ambulance was there."
Me, "seriously?"
Anthony and Charlie, "Yep we saw it on the bus on the way home from school."

I was concerned when Will said ambulance.  I had just text Jon and had not heard from him.  This time I decided to call.  He answered and proceeded to tell me everything was fine - nobody was hurt, the combine was fine and the whole field was NOT on fire!  That was good to hear.  In fact the boys and I went out later to go ride with them for awhile.

Fast forward a couple of days.  I had my niece and nephews over.  Of course when they played they were farming.  Lane grabbed the combine, tractors, wagons, semis and Will says, "don't forget the fire truck!  Just incase!"  I loved it (and tried not to laugh)!  I've got a few pictures of the boys "harvesting".  I love that even though they are getting older - they aren't too old to still play farming! 

Will running the combine - "picking" corn

Anthony the grain cart operator
This is Charlie's version of Key Coop!

All Done!

Saturday night we finished up with harvest!!  I tell you what - it seemed like there for awhile we were going so slow and it was taking a lot longer than years past.  And then all of a sudden they are done and I never got to help!!  I was a little bummed I didn't get the chance to help this year, but so thankful Don is feeling well enough to do it!  Past years Jon has had to hurry and get his crops out so he could get busy with custom anhydrous.  I'm so thankful that he is not doing that this year!!  They were able to take their time and enjoy harvest.  Our crops yielded pretty well considering the odd weather conditions we had this year - flood to drought!  We are so thankful for all the Lord has blessed us with and for the safe harvest! 

I love how they are all doing the same thing - like father like son!


Family picture in the combine (it was the best we could get!)

Flag Football

The school gives an opportunity for all 2nd - 6th graders to play flag football.  I love it for several reasons - it's free, a short season, it's relaxed and did I mention it is free!  Anthony participated last year.  This year both him and Will got to play.  Unfortunately they didn't have as many kids go out this year (I think that a lot of them went to play at the YMCA this year).  But fortunately for us - that meant Anthony and Will got to be on the same team (and with their cousins) - coached by their Uncle Shawn!  There were only a total of three teams mixed up of 2nd - 4th graders.  The boys had two practices before their games started and they played three Saturdays in October.  It's so fun to watch them play!  Looking forward to the days when they were red and white and play on Friday nights!

In action!  Every Saturday was so cold all the kids were bundled up - it was hard to tell who was who!

Team huddle after the game!

The team - Mike, Anthony, Paul, Drake, Will, Easton, Katelyn and PJ.

Meet Crawly!

Yep!  Crawly is a caterpillar!  I didn't know that Charlie had found him and brought him into the house until the next day.  I was cleaning off the counter and when I went to move a cup - there was something in it.  Let's just say it caught me by surprise!  He since then has made him a home as you can see above AND has found three more!  So we now have four caterpillars!  I believe the jar is getting a little crowded. 


So, it has been busy and a bit crazy around here lately - especially today.  We have the electrician, plumber and contractor all here working today!!  I can't tell you how ready I am for this project to be done.  So it is so nice to see (and hear) everyone working (it's almost comical).  They are going to start hanging drywall tomorrow!!   I've been behind on all the things I have wanted to blog about, so I'm going to try and catch up a bit today and the rest of this week.  Stay tuned for more posts!!

This is what my drive looks like!!  It's just as crazy inside too!!

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Farewell for Now

This past weekend marked the retirement date for our pastor of 16 years.  We have known about this date for a long time now, but it approached quicker than I anticipated.  I'm still not sure that I am fully feeling everything I should feel when someone who has been a part of your spiritual life for that long leaves.  There are several reason why that might be - which I won't go into - which is one of the reasons I'm not sure I should do this post now.  (I'm not sure it has fully sunk in - and maybe I should write about this when it actually does sink in - and I still might.)  As I look back at the last sixteen years he has been here - he has done a lot for our family.  He married Jon and I, baptized all of our kids, gave the funeral for our dear sweet TJ (who absolutely adored this man) and has been pretty instrumental in our spiritual walk.  Every Sunday as soon as he would say the benediction our kids would run down to the front of the church to go sit and chat with Pastor Don.  I know they will miss that when he is no longer serving our church. Although we will no longer see Pastor Don - the impact he left on our lives will always be a part of us. 

This was the usual picture on Sundays (along with many other children)!

Friday, October 4, 2013

An Honor

I have always felt extremely lucky and privileged to be a stay home mom.  I have enjoyed it more than just the obvious reasons - getting to be with my kiddos, working along side my husband, and staying in my pajamas until 3:00!  There are other perks as well - getting together with girlfriends, and helping out those friends and family who may have to work on a regular basis or every now and again.  This past week I have had the honor of watching this sweet little boy!  Meet Austin!

Jon even hung out with us one morning!  They were watching Mud Kings!
I have watched him four days now and only one more day left on the calendar (as of now) :(  I have thoroughly enjoyed watching him - he is such a good baby!  I must admit I don't get much done when he is around - but who would - did you see that cute little face?  But honestly it's all my fault and I think it's because I so desperately miss this stage.  When I was in it with my kids I didn't enjoy it as much for a couple different reasons.  One - I had more than one kid around so it wasn't as easy - four under the age of six! (since the boys are in school - it's just me and Austin)!  Two - I was always looking forward to the next stage and not enjoying the stage I was currently in.  Now that we've lost TJ - I'm trying to enjoy every moment/stage and not to hurry to the next one.  I want to freeze time - I'm not anxiously looking forward to the next stage (whatever that might be).  I love that since I stay home (even though all my kids are now in school) - I can do things like this.  That some days, I can rewind time - not with my kids - but get the chance to love on someone else's kids - and help my friend out too!!
I just have to tell this story.  One day this week when I was watching Austin, my sister and niece stopped by.  Well, when they first arrived Austin was sleeping.  He soon awoke from his nap and we put him in the high chair.  Hannah just wanted to be close to him - so I pulled up a bar stool so she could be at the same height as him.  So they were sitting across from each other - holding hands - it was so cute!  But I guess that wasn't close enough - so I moved the bar stool to the side of the high chair - so it could be closer yet.  That worked for a little bit - but she still wanted to be closer.  So she crawled on top of the tray of the high chair and climbed right in next to Austin.  See the picture below!

Austin didn't seem to mind at all - he was ALL smiles!!  I think he loved her as much as she loved him!  It was so cute - so I had to capture it.

I often contemplate going back to work now that all the kids are in school full time - in fact I was offered a job earlier this summer.  But for now - I think I'll pass.  Because if I can go on field trips with my kids, be there when they get off the bus, stay home with them when they are sick, help my husband when he needs it, watch super sweet kiddos for my friends and family, meet girlfriends for lunch and stay in my pajamas until 3:00 - I'll take that any day (as long as God allows) - and ENJOY every minute of it!! 

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

And So It Begins...

Another season of harvest has started!  It's later than last year and not so rushed either (at least not yet).  Jon just started yesterday afternoon with beans.  I went out to ride with him a little bit today and took a couple of pictures (with my phone) while I was there.  I hope to get more (and better) pictures through the harvest season.  I LOVE this time of year!!

The truck with the bean head trailer.  And "my" tractor and grain cart!  I usually only run it during corn harvest.  We will see if Jon has me running it with beans this year.
I like this picture with the combine working away and the Co-op in the background!