Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Tree full of Memories

We heat with wood so a "real live" tree does not have a chance of survival in our home ~ I bought these three trees that are in a clump in the 1990's and adore them ~ I also bought a huge tree at the Christmas Store in Great Falls in the 1980's and used to decorate both trees ~ but it seems easier to just do the "clump" some years ~ I have hundreds of ornaments that are resting in their big old storage box and wondering what happened that I have not brought them out to enjoy the season ~

This is my most favorite time of the year ~ at one time, I decorated anything that stood still for any length of time ~ but after so many years and since my age and agility for getting up and down on chairs and so forth has declined ~ I am beginning to think that "less is more" ~ or in my case it is a lot easier to take all the decorations down and put them away.

When I first saw these darling three trees with real life trunks and saw the branches coming out of the trunks like a real tree grows ~ I just had to have them. The three trees ~ one almost 8 foot tall, then a shorter one and another shorter than that one ~ well the deal was sealed ! Now the next question was would they fit into my van ~ with a whole lot of coaxing and putting seats down and so forth they did fit in! How I loved my 1992 Aero Star Van! The "pine branches" had a soft coating of "snow" which has come off every year but still has the hint of it on the tree.

I so fell in love with these types of trees that I bought any size I could find ~ and do have quite a collection.

The wonderful thing about putting up a tree and decorating it with all the ornaments from years past ~ are the wonderful and some sad memories of who made the ornament, who gave it to us and so forth. I always put the boys hand made ornaments on the trees ~ they were excited about that when they were little but as they grew older they thought that the paper ornaments ~ some missing glued on eyes and so forth looked pretty tacky and wanted me to take them off the tree ~ but, no, I stated these are precious memories of times past ~ and as they grew to adults they realized that they were really fun to hold, look at, and talk about.

~ and that is my favorite thing to do at this time of year ~ to remember ~ to share ~ to enjoy!

I joke about the fact that I am at the top of the "hill" (of life) and heading down the other side ~ some days I feel like I am sliding down way too fast and other days I cannot believe the age I find myself at ~ it astounds me as to where all those years have gone ~ did I use them wisely ~ no, certainly not always. Was I always in a "survive" mode to take care of my family, perhaps ~ would I have done things differently ~ yes, on many occasions for sure ~

When I came to Montana and married and began this part of my life on a ranch ~ it seemed as though everything was about survival ~ the weather, the land, the livestock, finances, relationships, in-laws, out-laws ~ How many times did we travel to "town" and survive the horrible ground blizzards of blowing snow. Will there be enough feed for the livestock, will there be open water, will the wells freeze up.

I accepted my new life as an adventure ~ and an adventure it certainly was ~ 43 years of a never ending adventure that takes twists and turns every day of the year.

To this day ~ when it begins to snow or the wind begins to blow Really Hard (like in the winter) ~ I begin to save water ~ knowing full well that the electricity can go out at any moment. I still have my old reliable wall corded phone for just such occasions. When the power goes so goes the cordless phones and since cell coverage is very iffy up here ~ can't count on them.

Decembers come so fast now as do the new years ~ enjoy your days, weeks, months, and years because they do go by in a flash ~ Have a wonderful Holiday Season and New Year (this is in case I don't get on here again before the new year)!

Saturday, November 30, 2013

End of November 2013

I, once again, have been remiss on posting pictures and musings on my blog ~ I am reminded of this by family and friends that are not on Face Book.

We have been enjoying our new little addition to our family ~ Kara and Jason had a darling little daughter, Delcena Kara, born on September 30, 2013.  She has reddish hair and dark blue gray eyes at this time.  Her skin is lovely and fair.  We are hoping she will be a redhead!

The time just seems to fly by ~ our summer was delightful ~ our flowers were the best ever ~

~ this is short but I just wanted to post the pictures of Delcena ~

Take care and enjoy ~

Sweet MaMa, Kara, and her little darling ~ Delcena Kara ♥

Sunday, June 30, 2013

 Clouds at sunset on 06-29-2013
 Marvin on Meadow-Muffin
 Marvin and MM ~ she is tall
 St. Mary Rising
 View to the south east through the lilacs
 View from back deck
 Yellow Mountain
Chief Mountain

Here it is the end of June and I am finally adding some pictures and musings.  I am reminded by friends and family who are not on Face Book that I do not keep up my blog.  Sorry about that!

Ground broken up and seeded ~calves branded and moved to pastures ~ a lovely beginning to our growing season this year.  Beautiful and green here so far.  We have had rain and hit the hottest day yesterday at 86 with humidity (an unusual thing ~ humidity in our area)!

Plenty of grizzly bear problems this year for us and for other ranchers.  Many cows killed by grizzlies along the US/Canadian border.  We had a very large cow killed by a grizzly.  Lots of bear activity up north by Jason and Kara on the north part of our ranch.  Other ranchers also had killings by grizzlies.

Bugs are out in force now!  Huge flying ants...ugh!

Enjoying the humming birds that frequent our new feeders.

Worked very hard on keeping a little preemie calf (Little-Bit) alive for months ~ but she just could not make it and passed away ~ that was very sad for me.  I had high hopes that she would pull through but her lungs and digestive tract just would not function properly.

Gave most of my hens to Jason and Kara...have kept 5 Barred Plymouth Rocks...we get 4 to 5 eggs a day now.  That is plenty for us.  Jason and Kara supply other families with eggs now.  We are out of the egg business!  Yay!

Marvin is riding Meadow Muffin and next he will ride Spike ~ he had a few tumbles with Meadow Muffin ~ but she is a gentle good mannered horse.  Marvin bottle fed her and raised her from a little baby in 2008.  She is part work horse and is quite tall and beautiful!  She has a good attitude.  Marvin states that she is easy to ride and does not cause him any back aches!  She stumbled once and messed up Marvin's left leg and then she did a side-step when a baby elk scared her and Marvin hit the ground ~ again.  But otherwise things are good between them.  Spike may have a little more "spit" in him.  Marvin has ridden him before but not in a year.

I am just totally enjoying the summer and our yard.  I love cutting the grass which seems to never end ~ but I have learned to pace myself or otherwise I can not walk the next day...this is my exercise.  Bought a new pedal bike and have to get out on it.

Well, that is about it for now.  Hope everyone's summer is going well ~ give each other a big hug and have a great day!

Friday, April 5, 2013

April 2013

April showers bring May flowers...and green grass for the livestock!  We had a shower last night and again this afternoon.  Smells so very good!

As I wander through my thoughts and I see that I have not posted anything since last ~ what ~ October?...my thoughts tend to be ~ where has the time gone ~

I don't remember November ~ it must have been okay ~ Christmas comes to mind with a thundering clap of memories!  People ask, "What did you get for Christmas?" ~ our answer this year was Demodectic Mange! What a surprise.  Actually, we "opened" our present early...it was Christmas Eve Day.  The previous week it had been cold and I was not feeling very good so I had not been playing with my new pup, Tessa-Two.

Marvin brought her in the porch where she normally slept after romping and terrorizing the older dogs all day.  Looking closely at her I could see her eyes were watering and she had some skin irritation spots on her lower legs.  She had been spayed in November and had an infection that cleared up.  Turning her over and checking her stomach and the wound area, I could see all sorts of pustules on her tummy. Yikes, was my response to the mess I saw.  I put some antibiotic cream on her tummy, eye dropped her eyes and attempted to get hold of a vet!  Dr. Steven Hjartarson from  Northern Veterinary Clinic callled me back and told me to bring her in on Christmas Morning...bless him!

The next morning Tessa-Two looked horrible she had chewed off her hair on her legs and it was just awful.  We loaded her up and drove to Cut Bank.  She was diagnosed with Demodectic Manage!  The only good part about this Manage is that it does not transfer to other pets, cats or humans.  She was checked out thoroughly, given a shot, and we were sent home with pills and ointment.

We should have put on one of those "funnels" so she could not chew at herself.  But we had no idea what she could do overnight.  The Mange took off like wildfire...I lost all my pictures of her poor body when my computer crashed sometime in February.  We also had to give her a bath twice a week with special shampoo...we are talking about a 65 pound puppy...however, once in the tub she was very cooperative!

Once she had the "funnel" on her head and could not chew off her hair or what remained of it -- it was somewhat easier to handle.  Tessa-Two was a good patient.  But the experience was exhausting for Marvin and myself.  She had weekly shots at the vets (160 miles round trip), ointment, probiotics in her food, baths, drying her, and keeping her warm in the porch..........

Did lots of research on the internet ~ sanitized a lot of towels...thank goodness the bedding did not have to be changed that often...however, I had old sheets covering her big dog bed.

It took from Christmas Day until into March to clear up this awful Mange.  Tessa-Two's hair has grown back and she is looking good.  Thanks to the skill and caring at Northern Veterinary Clinic in Cut Bank we all made it through this horrific event in her life.  I have read that some puppies can get mange in their early months.  I know all dogs etc have some type of mites but if they go CRAZY you are in for a real wild ride!  And, I might add, lots of money for treatment.  This was our first and certainly hope our last experience with any type of canine mange. Accolades to Dr. Steven Hjartarson and the staff at Northern Veterinary Clinic ~ their care and treatment of  Tessa-Two was outstanding!

So, those were the months of the MANGE!  Then my computer started to do some strange things...the sounds it made were very weird...and it should have made me back up everything right then and there.  Kind of a "knock-knock" anyone home in the upper cranium...I guess not because it really did a crazy noise and then told me it was shutting down because it had had it!  And, it was very serious ~  all my memory and photos, and EVERYTHING was lost!...luckily my daughter-in-law, Kara, had backed up my stuff sometime in 2010 ~ so I had lots of photos and all my budget forms that I use constantly for the ranch and so forth.  What a dear she is~

And that was another surprise expenditure ~ a new computer tower~

My newest project is a little preemie heifer calf that was born about 20 days or so early.  She is a little black Angus calf.  Wobbly legs, long black lashes, liquid brown eyes, and she loves to jump in the air when she is full of warm milk replacer ~ she has a pen out in the quonset to keep out of the weather.  On good days she comes to our yard and soaks up the sun.  I feed her every 3 hours now.  She had an upper respiratory problem but Dr. Ethel Connelly at Grass Winds Veterinary gave me some shots for her and she has really perked up and it has helped her breathing.  I was afraid her lungs had not developed fully and this cause her many problems.  She is kind-a knock-kneed but she is up a moving on her little legs.  She is perfectly proportioned ~ just a wee little lass!  Her head looks rather large for her body in my picture but she is just darling!  (Where would we be without wonderful Vets!)

 My beautiful Hibiscus Rosa just keeps on blooming throughout the winter!

  A beautiful miniature rose that has rebloomed and smells Amazing!  It was white before and now is a soft yellow with a sweet rose fragrance!  I am delighted!  We have very long winters and not seeing anything besides "brown" everywhere makes it a delight to have blooming flowers in our home.  My snap dragons keep right on blooming as well!  Totally delightful!

Time to go feed the little one so I will end this.  Hope you are all having a good April!