Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Future Farmers of America

As I was folding laundry this morning, I came across Kyle's Wickes FFA T-shirt. I've seen him wear it a million times but for some reason just glanced upon the front and read the words " Learning to do, doing to learn, earning to live, living to serve". Somehow this motto has slipped my attention but I found the words to be compelling.

I clearly remember sitting several times at FFA functions and hearing the creed being read with a big lump in my throat. The exact words eluded me but I remember the feeling of having a pride in the organization and feeling a very strong affirmation for my own occupation.

So, I've attached it for you to read. I think whether you are involved in agriculture or not, these are captivating words.

I believe in the future of agriculture, with a faith born not of words but of deeds - achievements won by the present and past generations of agriculturists; in the promise of better days through better ways, even as the better things we now enjoy have come to us from the struggles of former years.

I believe that to live and work on a good farm, or to be engaged in other agricultural pursuits, is pleasant as well as challenging; for I know the joys and discomforts of agricultural life and hold an inborn fondness for those associations which, even in hours of discouragement, I cannot deny.

I believe in leadership from ourselves and respect from others. I believe in my own ability to work efficiently and think clearly, with such knowledge and skill as I can secure, and in the ability of progressive agriculturists to serve our own and the public interest in producing and marketing the product of our toil.

I believe in less dependence on begging and more power in bargaining; in the life abundant and enough honest wealth to help make it so--for others as well as myself; in less need for charity and more of it when needed; in being happy myself and playing square with those whose happiness depends upon me.

I believe that American agriculture can and will hold true to the best traditions of our national life and that I can exert an influence in my home and community which will stand solid for my part in that inspiring task.

Friday, September 18, 2009

Keeping Eddie Busy

One notable characteristic about boxers is that they are active and require adequate exercise to prevent boredom. Since Eddie is still a puppy, he does a lot of napping but I'm beginning to see more and more of this boredom coming out in him. Thank goodness we live in a place where I can let him out of the house and he can run around like a maniac. However, he likes me to be with him when he's doing this and well, sometimes I'm on house duty. So, I've been finding little ways to keep him occupied while we are working indoors.

Today, I tossed him my empty bottle of sparkling water (I mix it with cranberry yummy).
At first he looked at me like I was an idiot. He has such whimsical facial expressions.
Then he dug on into it and really started to enjoy the lovely crunching sound.
Then it got a little more serious...
After about 5 minutes, the label was shredded and being the good mommy I am, I took that away.
I like this whole water bottle thing...he was busy for at least a good half hour
and on it went
then this is when that whole boxer personality really started coming out, I love this part...the jumping, the pouncing, the tossing, the sheer merriment of it all.
oh look...Eddie has actual magical powers!!
Then it's back down to working the bottle over with those jaws.
and now, he is tired of Momma taking his picture
brace yourself Momma
then it's over and now I have to go find something else to occupy his time. I'm sure that I would have been wise to have kept my own self busy while he was occupied instead of taking pictures of the whole thing. Now he's napping and I'm blogging. Laundry and soap-making are awaiting.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Precious Moments

We celebrated Taylor's 17th birthday on Friday evening. As I got out her birthday banner, I was reminiscent of the birthdays that have come before. I think I made this banner for Taylor when she was 8 or 9, so it's been around a while.
There is something even more precious about Taylor's birthday's that has started to become quite a display in my house. Every year, Granna gets Taylor a Precious Moments figurine. Now she has a whopping 17 of them.
This was #1. Seems like such a long time ago, and yet somehow it seems like yesterday. Granna has a knack for capturing the memories of the year with the figure she so carefully chooses. There is a spiritual bond between those chicks, Taylor and her Granna. Who better to choose a gift to be reminiscent of the years gone by.
She even gets her an ornament every Christmas, which I can't bear to put in storage so they sit in with the others all year long in the curio cabinet. I figure they have much to chat about and I would hate to separate them.
As they began to accumulate, I loved the sweet, enchanting pastel light they began to cast. The more that gathered, the prettier the display became.
All of them as a whole is a precious thing, and each individually, special.
Like the one she got the year she played ball.
Or the one when she was Miss Cheerleader.
The one she got after we moved her to the chicken farm (bless her heart).
This one she got the first year her Daddy took her deer hunting. You can't tell me that doesn't make your heart get all mushy and sentimental, or is it just me?
This is the one she got this year. I noticed as I placed her in the cabinet with the rest that she had several with kitties...wonder why??
So, in she goes to be displayed oh so proudly...the current year gets the front row, I'm sure the others don't mind. They've all had their turn.
...and when it is time for Taylor to go out into the world on her own, they will travel with her. I'm sure the assembly will continue to grow as long as Taylor continues to have birthdays. And each year she can look back and not only remember each years uniqueness, but will have something precious and abiding from her Granna.

Sunday, September 13, 2009


One of my favorite meals on Sunday evenings is a big bowl of popcorn. Usually Sunday lunch is a fairly big event, and who wants to cook a meal on Sunday evening?? not me.

No microwave popcorn in my house. I enjoy the whole process of popcorn making. As soon as those kernels start to sizzle in the oil something magical happens. A lovely aroma begins to fill the house...and a crowd gathers.
This is the same crowd that gathers when I'm deboning chicken. Basically I have them as an audience any time I'm cooking in the kitchen.
They really like popcorn evenings, because they know Momma likes to share her popcorn.

Incidentally, I had a little white mouse named Popcorn when I was about 8 years old. This is the mouse that I made my mother take to the vet when she was sick. Come to find out the poor dear was menstruating. You can imagine my mother's horror and the discussion among the neighborhood mothers when they found out! Who else besides your mother is gonna do something like that??
Menstruating mice aside, this whole popcorn business is divine. I am easily amused and the fact that I can toss little kernels of corn into hot oil and in about 5 minutes have a big bowl full of yummy salty popcorn is so thrilling...and delicious. Plus I get to haphazardly fling popcorn in the air and let the dogs catch it. Things just can't get much more fun than that.