Friday, April 29, 2011

A Stormy Week

This week, and for what seems like forever, our days have been filled with storms. Not just your average storms, but ones with wild winds and exceptionally heavy rains. Even as I am typing this I can hear the wind roaring once more and rain hitting the windows. When will it ever stop?

This week I took some photographs of a storm moving directly over our house.

These pictures were taken from the upper deck of our house.

Looking back at these photos the clouds seem so beautiful,

but at the time I was more concerned about the whirling/swirling action they were taking. We have been fortunate in that we haven't incurred any damages, but so many families in the south have not been so lucky this week.

One bright spot in the week was finding a teeny-tiny nest in a fern on my front porch.

And two out-of-focus eggs just waiting to hatch.

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

On the Surface

On the surface blogging seems so surreal. Life is captured in pictures and words that exhibit mere blips in time. Much of the ugliness of life is left out of the equation. Those nasty details of dirty laundry, messy children, and crazy dogs don't always fit into the neat atmosphere created here on the web.

So, today I am here to let it be known that it isn't all about barns and sunsets on the farmette. Pretty flowers don't always rule and clothes aren't always clean. And, there is an enormous pile of barn boots in the mudroom, but I will spare you a picture of that hot mess.

Take this handsome fellow for example. Just a few days ago he ran into the house.....with fresh manure on his feet, legs, body, ears, etc.... I think you get the picture. He made a mad dash to the toilet and proceeded to drink heartily. I quickly had a spell and then hauled him outside.

Why can't he just drink out of the birdbath like she does?

I kid people, I kid.....I do provide them fresh drinking water. Why can't they use it?

Then we have the weed production. If it weren't for weeds, I am not sure the farmette could produce anything at all. I think they secretly scheme during the night to take over...the yard, the garden, etc...

And, lastly what would our dear farm life be without a Super Secret Agent Man in a pink scarf. Sometimes you just have to use what's available when your wife doesn't have the laundry finished.

This photo post doesn't even include all of the hunting paraphernalia spread amongst our home, nor the doggie chew chips hidden underneath the spare bedroom bedspread.

I could go on and on, but I am going to leave it at that.

But, perhaps there is something you would like to share........

Monday, April 25, 2011

Just a Thought for Monday...

Keep away from small people who try to belittle your ambitions. Small people always do that, but the really great make you feel that you, too, can become great.

Mark Twain

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Happy Easter

Wishing each and everyone of you a Happy Easter.

No matter where you might be.

Friday, April 22, 2011

Odds and Ends from the Week

Gone are those crazy snow days being stuck in the house. Now we are on the run everyday with a seemingly endless amount of activities. Trap shooting has started for The Deerslayer and practice is essential. His shooting gear is taking over the laundry room and I know one day I will miss that.

Toots is in full swing with softball practice. I am hoping for more crazy socks this year.

Along with the crazy schedule we also have crazy weather. Rain, storms, and high wind warnings seem to be the norm everyday. If it keeps up The Deerslayer might just be able to float the canoe in the pasture, as he did this past spring.

As for me....I am missing time with my Kindle. Where is a snow day when you REALLY need it?!

Tuesday, April 19, 2011


"At a young age we would go with our mother to the wash place. We would carry the water, dip the water, and help hang out the clothes. We had a good life. "

"I would like to see children in this day 'n' time go back and have to live the life that I did. Havin' fun really wasn't thought of much."

Rose Ester Shirley Barnes, Fall/Winter 1997

The Foxfire 40th Anniversary Book

Faith, Family and the Land

Sunday, April 17, 2011

April Showers

April showers bring Dandelions....


dogs in clover....
and green fields for cows.

It has also brought high winds almost everyday here to Smalltownland. And a variety of storms has come our way as well. Friday night we all ended up in the cellar as a tornado warning was issued for our area of the county. Thankfully our farm did not receive any damage.

We also recently planted several new fruit trees and one White Dogwood tree. All have remained unscathed during the recent weather outbreaks.

And here I thought things would calm down after that crazy winter we had. What was I thinking?!

Friday, April 15, 2011

Why Do We Blog?

A couple of weeks ago McVal challenged me to think about why we blog. At first I didn't really think much about it. Initially I started blogging to work on my interest in photography, but it has turned into so much more.

It has really become a way to connect with people outside my realm of Smalltownland. To learn about how people function in different environments and how their lives are really different from mine......and often so similar. I learn about their hobbies, their family, and their ups and downs in life.

Please meet a mere handful of my friends.......

I have met a wonderful lady who lives on an island off the coast of Scotland and blogs about her life on the family's sheep farm at, Home School on the Croft. The wind is so strong at her home that the laundry on the line flies horizontally. I am serious....she posted a picture of it.

There is Nancy who is living in Nebraska in an old still my heart. She blogs about her daily farm life adventures and her awesome photography habit at A Rural Journal.

I also have the pleasure of having connected with wonderful people all over the world. Jay_on_Tour's blog takes you on tours of the most picturesque cities in all of England. His photography is like having your own personal travel agent.

Liesl blogs about her life on a farm in Africa. Yes, Africa with wild animals. She races endurance horses and farms with her husband.

And, last but not least, my favorite canine friend George, from Georgethelad. A Welsh Terrier who documents his excursions around the English countryside and the trips to the pub with his dad. It seems George does enjoy the froth from a good pint of Guinness.

At this point I may be a blogger forever. I don't know how I could give up all of these wonderful people I have mentioned.....and at least another hundred that I didn't mention.

What is your favorite thing about blogging?

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

My Old House

Our house was originally built in 1901. During that same year the electric typewriter was invented, Teddy Roosevelt came into the presidency, and a little book entitled, "The Wonderful Wizard of Oz", came into publication. At the onset it did not have electricity nor indoor plumbing. Part of what was a very large, active farm, it sat empty for quite a few years before our neighbor renovated it in the 1980's. Apparently it was a mere shell of the original house and raccoons were living in it. The furniture guy was so keen to tell me this tidbit upon his delivery visit. A detail about its existence I could have done without.

The original details of the house were lost many years ago. However, we are fortunate that it is an entirely up to date, functioning older home...with all of the eccentricites that come with a home of this age. I will say that we found the original claw foot tub in the barn, where it had been used as a trough. Through the talents of Secret Agent Man it was totally renovated and brought back to life as an outdoor tub, that is terrific for summertime soaking. But, that is another post for another time.....

Several year ago a very elderly lady, named Olive, came to our house and asked to come inside. She explained that her dad had built our house. She looked around and then told the story of how she sat at the bottom of the staircase and listened in on her parent's conversation in the parlor. They were discussing their divorce, which at the time was not the norm in society. I like to think that in this old house most things work part of the time and all things work some of the time. The floors slope...just a bit and the stairs can be a smidge creaky.

She is a lovely structure that has witnessed the coming of electricity, plumbing, a paved road, and goings of many a family and time. She continues to hold up under the weight and strain of four busy people, seasonal changes, and stresses of modern life.

With only a mere hiccup every now and again...bless her heart.

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Red River Gorge

This past week the chiclets and I found ourselves finally on spring break. I know it must seem curious to want days off after having so many free snow days, but this is a different situation entirely. Warm temperatures and a hefty dose of spring fever made for a great week.

While the first part of our week dealt with farm and household duties, the latter included a trip to the Red River Gorge in east, central Kentucky. With its fantastic geological formations, it is a favorite of rock climbers everywhere. Known simply as, "The Red", climbers flock to the area with Miguel's Pizza famously known as a central hang out. And, yes Miguel makes some fabulous pizza.

We chose to do some hiking to get to the Natural Bridge. Why ride the chairlift when you can climb up a steep mountain instead?!

With all of the goofing off, it was surprising that we made it at all.

Here you can see our very own Toots in the pink shirt being dwarfed by the bridge. If you are a fan of nature and/or hiking at all, I would suggest a trip. Spectacular scenery abounds in the area. Even Secret Agent Man was dwarfed a bit by the formations. We also hiked a trail to Chimney Top Rock as seen in this photo.
My pictures do not do the area justice and the area is a wash of color during the fall.

Friday, April 8, 2011

Annabel Lee

It was many and many a year ago,

In a kingdom by the sea,

That a maiden there lived whom you may know

by the name of ANNABEL LEE;

And this maiden she lived with no other thought

Than to love and be loved by me.

I was a child and she was a child,

In this kingdom by the sea;

But we loved with a love that was more than love-

I and my Annabel Lee;

With a love that the winged seraphs of heaven

Coveted her and me.

And this was the reason that, long ago,

In this kingdom by the sea,

A wind blew out of a cloud, chilling

My beautiful Annabel Lee;

So that her highborn kinsman came

And bore her away from me,

To shut her up in a sepulchre

In this kingdom by the sea.

The angels, not half so happy in heaven,

Went envying her and me-

Yes! - that was the reason (as all men know,

In this kingdom by the sea)

That the wind came out of the cloud by night,

Chilling and killing my Annabel Lee.

But our love it was stronger by far than the love

Of those who were older than we-

Of many far wiser than we-

And neither the angels in heaven above,

Nor the demons down under the sea,

Can ever dissever my soul from the soul

Of the beautiful Annabel Lee.

For the moon never beams without bringing me dreams

Of the beautiful Annabel Lee;

And the stars never rise but I feel the bright eyes

Of the beautiful Annabel Lee;

And so all the night-tide, I lie down by the side

Of my darling-my darling-my life and my bride,

In the sepulchre there by the sea,

In her tomb by the sounding sea.

~All photographs were taken in the Victorian section of the Georgetown Cemetery in Georgetown, Kentucky.~

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Scenic Spring Sunset

One of the many wonderful things about our farm is that I can just step off of the front porch and everything is right there in front of me.

With the warmer weather comes nightly walks and some incredible scenery.

When we lived in the city a nightly walk meant keeping on the sidewalk and staying out of the road.

Now it means staying out of the briars and taking my camera with me....and the dogs.

"Life is a gift. Never forget to enjoy and bask in every moment you are in."


Sunday, April 3, 2011

Clownin' Around

Today we wandered into the big city to spend the afternoon at the circus. A ritual of childhood that we all pass sooner or later. And since Secret Agent Man had never been to see the circus, (seriously), I felt it was time for him to go.

We chicks were not afraid to sport a clown nose, but we couldn't get the guys of the house to wear one.

We had a great time at the pre-show, where you could get up close and personal with the performers, try on costumes, and try out some tricks for yourself. The clowns also treated us to some antics.

The elephant, however, was a bit more serious in her endeavor as she painted a picture.

Overall I have to say it was a great show...... and I think my daughter enjoyed it the most.

She kept her clown nose on the whole time.