Where Antelope Roam


Christmas Memories
December 17, 2016, 9:04 am
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It’s almost Christmas… indeed the season is upon us as I was reminded the other day when I went to the “big” city for an office event and also tried to do some Christmas shopping… wow!  Can’t say I miss the big city at this time of year when I’m by myself..I have to admit, I’m not a lover of shopping… shocking, I know… being female and all but I’ve really never been a shopper..After the year, I’ve had, the memories surrounding Christmas are rather precious.

My Christmas memories center around family…. not shopping.. though one shopping event with my SIL did end up with my introduction to Chik-fil-a’s peppermint shake for which I will be eternally grateful… LOVE peppermint shakes!  Another shopping trip/work event turned out to be a great trip as well.   I shop better when I’m accompanied by an adult… Lol

So, yesterday, I waxed nostalgic in thinking back to Christmases when both my parents were alive and I … well, let’s just say, I was a lot younger…

I grew up in Michigan where the snow falls downward.  Now, if you’re scratching your head and wondering “doesn’t ALL snow fall downward”… then I know you’ve never lived on the plains.  On the plains, snow often falls sideways because when snow falls here, we usually get 4 inches of wind for every inch of snow we receive, particularly if you don’t live in town.

When I was much younger,  say… 4 or 5, mom and dad had some connection with the youth group at church.   I don’t recall if they had the youth group or they just invited them out to the farm for a tobogganing party.    The farm had some awesome hills for tobogganing.  If you’ve never tobogganed, you’ve missed so much!    An interesting word toboggan… I’ll have to look up it’s origin but a toboggan is a long sled with no runners upon which several people… 5-6 get on and fly down hills.   It was great fun!   Though I wasn’t a member of the youth group apparently I was cut enough for them to include me in their rides… :).   I remember there was home made hot chocolate with marshmallows afterward.   Ahhh.

The farm was also where my dad’s parents lived (it was grandpa’s dairy farm).   One Christmas, I remember going to grandpa and grandma’s for Christmas and as a gift I received a little “makeup” kit.   It had fake lipstick and rouge in it.   Totally awesome and totally fun playing makeup!

After we had grown older and had moved into town, Christmas Day often meant going into the next town where my mother’s sister lived.   Christmas Dinner would be served up and we’d feast.   Her house was big enough to accommodate all of us.   One room was where those who wanted to either watch the Christmas Day parade and/or football games gathered.  One room was just for those who wanted to hang out and talk (cell phones were not invented yet… so people actually talked with those in the room with them.. lol) and, of course, there was the kitchen…where usually the older related females hung out talking… about what?  I have no clue.

Christmas Eve was always fun because my room was directly over where the Christmas tree was and on Christmas Eve, the lights on the tree stayed lit.   My room was also the only room upstairs that had a “hole” in it.   It was actually where the heat was allowed to rise before there was a furnace put it.  It was through this hole, my siblings and I could barely see the tree and what Christmas presents “Santa” might have brought us.

“Santa’s” room was also, just off the room where the tree was, so when we kids would hear rustling down below, we knew Santa was busy and we’d try to catch a glimpse of what might be there.

Then as we started growing up and families started enlarging through marriage and grandkids, we started doing Christmas primarily at mom and dad’s.

 

One year when I and my LB were young adults and still single, we were at mom and dad’s for Christmas and as it would have it, snow was falling on Christmas Eve… LB ever the lover of snow, (though now lives in Florida.. what???) suggested we take a walk in the snow down the streets of our sleepy little town.  So we did.  It was awesome.  The snow was falling so beautifully shown in street lights as we walked and talked.  I can’t remember the conversation we had but we just enjoyed being with each other while walking in the snow.

Mom loved Home Interior decorations and always had candle sconces on the walls and candles on the tables… well, apparently LB inherited the love for light.  One year, I remember we turned all the electric lights out except for those on the tree, and lit all of mom’s candles and just sat and watched them and talked a little.  It was an almost holy time.

Then, of course, Christmas Dinner became the focal point as we grew older.   Mom was a great cook and went all out at Christmas time.   Baking for Christmas usually started a week or so beforehand.  There were usually several different kinds of pies.   Pumpkin, pecan, mincemeat (I’ve never been able to acquire a taste for that..), chocolate pie (as grandkids started appearing).   Cherry Delight, homemade Almond joys,fudge and of course, the prerequisite Grandma Beemer’s Molasses cookies.

The latter were required when the games began!  (The reindeer weren’t the only ones who played games!)    The cookies helped us to think when we would play games like Boggle, Trivial Pursuit, Pictionary, Skipbo and Uno.

Ahhh!  The memories!  The older I get the more precious they become.  I always wanted a large family of my own because though there were the typical squabbles, we always made our own fun.   Alas, that was not to be but God knows best.

As you celebrate Christmas this year, may the Lord be a large part of it and if you have family to celebrate with, make memories…. lots of them…

Until Next time, love God, love others and  Merry Christmas… make memories to last a life time!

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The challenge
January 13, 2015, 5:10 pm
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As many of you know, I have found smoothies.. yes and it’s been a grand challenge.   So, sometime before Christmas I went to Walmart over my lunch hour for something of which I can’t now remember.  In the process of being at Walmart, I came across a book (yes… I am a book worm… I love books.. I love to look at books, I love to read books, I love to smell books… )

Any way, I came across the 10-day  Green Smoothie Cleanse by JJ Smith.   It caught my attention because I was looking to put more green smoothies into my regimen and really I needed help there.

I did not buy the book at that time but went back to the office and mentioned to my co-worker.   The next thing I know I’ve bought the book and at least four others are doing it or are planning to do it.   You see these green smoothies are part of a detox.. It takes 10 days

In the book the author states that the reason many weight loss attempts don’t work is because people don’t detox first.  She also attests that many people had lost weight through her regimen, as well as lowered their BP.  Though I really wasn’t looking for a weight loss/diet, I was interested in the lowering of the BP naturally.   This all happened around Christmas.

Well, Christmas is NOT the time to do something new with your diet… you’re just bound to get hijacked in the effort.   So, I decided to wait.

It is ten days of primarily drinking green smoothies with suggested snacks in between which consist of veggies, hard-boiled eggs and nuts/seeds.   The author gives you a green smoothie recipe for each day.   The other pull for this is many claimed that it helped them lose the belly fat.   Well, hubby has wanted to try to lose his belly fat and when I related this to him, he decided he wanted to try this with me.

While waiting to get through Christmas, hubby developed and was diagnosed with a hernia.   After New Year’s, he went through hernia surgery so I had thought we would wait until he was healed to do this but …. no, he wanted to start the day after his surgery.   So, I got all the necessary ingredients and we are now on Day 6… To this point, we have both lost 6 pounds…and quite happy with that.

Having said that, I am looking forward to when Day 10 arrives.    Though there are snacks you can eat in between the smoothies (a full cleanse consists of dividing the smoothie recipe she gives you into three equal parts with snacks in between), I really miss the physical activity of chewing my food.  Sounds weird, I know but I do.   (There is a modified cleanse where you drink the smoothie for two of your meals and then eat a “clean” meal for one).

So, that’s the challenge.  The one thing I’ve learned in this is that it does take some discipline.   I’ve found that I can go to Walmart and not walk out with a pop and a brownie!   Lol… I’ll let you know what the final weight loss is after we reach Day 10.

Until next time, love God, love others and see what’s out there that will challenge you!

 



Even Adults Have Snow Days
December 15, 2014, 1:34 pm
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Yes… it’s true.. .even adults have snow days and today is one for me.   Now, we only had between 9-13″ of snow and you may think that’s not a lot but here on the high plains, it’s not the amount of snow one gets that is a problem.  It’s what comes after the snow that is a problem  — the wind!   With nothing to stop the wind here it whips up drifts that even a 4-wheel vehicle can have trouble getting through.  Unless you own a snow plow, drifts are a problem.

Yesterday we were blessed with precipitation that started out as rain and quickly turned to snow.   We made it to church yesterday morning but the evening was a no go for us.    By the time we got out of church, we decided to forego some stops we had planned to make and made a beeline… albeit a slow beeline… for home.

Glad to make it home safely, we stayed there the rest of the night anticipating the morning.   Watching the forecasts has been rather hilarious.   Sometimes the forecasts said we were not receiving snow but all I had to do was look out my window to see that they were indeed wrong.

I had thought to get to work this morning as I was subbing for a friend who was gone on a long weekend.   However, when light arrived… hubby went out to inspect the situation.  When he came back in, his only comment was: “..and you think you’re going to work today?”   Hmmm… that was not encouraging.. and indeed with all 4-wheel vehicles down at the moment, getting to the highway was going to be a trick if not down right impossible.. so, sad to say I had to call in to my supervisor and let her know I wasn’t making it today.

So, what to do with a snow day?   Well….I spent some time on FB and did you know you can be on that for a few hours without realizing it????   No???  Me either.

However, I did find a site that I found quite educational and motivational.   Thanks to Ruth Soukoup, I found motivation to organize my pantry.   I can see the look on your face and hear a Tool-man .. huh? coming from you… now just listen.

The house I live in is the family homestead and I’ve been rather reticent to make it our own… hence, I’ve left a few things unorganized such as my food stuffs.   I’ve never really known what to do with them.

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Exhibit A

One each side of my sink cabinets is a lazy Susan type cupboard and I have dutifully tried to use them, but they have been hard to access and have not readily shown their wares.   On top of that, being that we live in the country, rodents  {{{{shudder}}}} have been an issue in that particular cupboard. (Have I ever mentioned that I used to keep my olive oil down in this cupboard?  That was before I pulled the bottle out one day only to find a mouse had committed suicide in it!  Again… {{{{{Shudder}}}}} See exhibit A) Not to mention some of my canned goods were stashed downstairs in the freezer room where they weren’t handy either.

In reading Ruth’s blog, she suggested organizing one’s pantry.   So, today, I put on the Statler Brothers’ Christmas tape (yes, I actually do have the tape.. not CD or MP3 player..) and I pulled out all the stops and canned goods out of cupboard and shelves and reorganized them in different shelves that are eye-level and easier to see what’s on hand.  We’ll see how this works out… I’ll let you know.

This is just another one of my adventures in organizing, which probably was more motivated by my SIL than anything else.   Thanks, JB!

Until next time,

Love God, love others and think about what you can organize!



The Best Laid Plans of Mice and men.
November 12, 2013, 10:14 pm
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Hubby says I’m not a planner… well, that’s sort of true.    When it comes to projects around the house, I just want a general direction to go and then I want to get at it and get it done… sometimes that works… sometimes it doesn’t.

However, when it comes to taking trips, I do plan… I just can’t take off on the spur of the moment.  I want to know when we’re leaving, when we’ll arrive and what we’ll do after we arrive.    Sometimes that works… sometimes it doesn’t.

Well, back in June or so, hubby informed me we needed to take a trip to see his uncle in the Los Angeles area.   Okay… that’s good.  Financial Peace principles to the rescue again!    I had the category  “vacation”  in our budget already… we’ll just ramp up  what we put into that “envelope” and save the money so we can pay as we go and not have anything to pay on a credit card…So far, so good… Now we get down to the nitty gritty and set plans to leave…

We had to plan it so that we weren’t needed at our respective jobs… I had just started a new job when he told me… so I was a little concerned about taking time off so soon… he was working on parts for a new carnival ride… hmmm…. we finally set a time and shot for it.

Because our vehicles are mostly short range vehicles, a.k.a. don’t leave home too far with them… we rent a car when we go long distances… which we did for this trip.  Our target day and time for leaving (or maybe I should say my target time) was Saturday around noon… good?  Of course, good!  My reason for traveling on Saturday was so that we could make it to a town in time to have a good night’s rest and be able to get up and go to church on Sunday….travel or not, I like to be in church.

Here’s where the plan starts falling apart.   Daughter’s car not working well on Friday… hubby and daughter get up early on Saturday, run to salvage yard to get parts and work on it… long story short, we left home about 2:00 a.m. Sunday morning.   We were less than 10 miles from the rental place when the emissions light came on, so we called their roadside service people who recommended we return the car to the rental place.    We did so reluctantly because we really liked the model we were first given.    Much to our dismay, we were not given the same model as before.. though we did get the sporty version…. it was okay.   Disappointment builds character.

We left the rental place, drove 4 1/2 hours and stopped and went to church in Grand Junction at Pear Park Baptist Church.

After enjoying the service and then lunch we continued our journey into Utah.   It started out pretty well, then we started going down through the mountain passes between Green River (yeah… wasn’t there a mouse or something that went to Green River on a train???)  and Richfield.

As we drove, we could see snow coming over the mountains and into the valleys as the sun shown through it.  That was rather fascinating but my fascination with it didn’t last long as we continued on and the snow started sticking to the road…

Now mountain passes in sunshine are one thing… mountain passes in snow are quite another and quite honestly… not my favorite thing to do… and I know this may surprise you but they’re actually not even on my Bucket list.  We had hoped to get down the road a ways before we had to stop for the night but it wasn’t looking too good.  I was nervous.  Then all of sudden we were over the summits (we went over two or three 6 – 7,000 ft summits)  and the snow quite literally quit.

By 6:00 o’clock though we were both extremely tired and decided to stop in Beaver, UT where we sought accommodations at the Comfort Inn…Ahh… now we could relax.     We were given a nice room with a Jacuzzi in it and because Hubby had complained of his back hurting quite a bit during the drive (he has chronic back pain)  I thought the Jacuzzi was just the thing for him….the nice thing about it is we didn’t ask for it but it was offered to us…  I think God had this planned for us…. this was a good ending to a very long and tiring day.

Until Next time, love God, love others and remember… sometimes part of a trip is the journey of getting started!



My DIY Project for the Year
November 5, 2013, 3:46 pm
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So,… I’ve become a handyman… of sorts…  For several years, I have been looking at the hearth underneath our wood stove by which we heat most of the winter…. we do have a furnace which we press into service in very cold  weather or when the wood stove is not usable… such as the last month.

I have been wanting to replace the hearth for some time.   It has been stuck back in the 70’s when Harvest Gold was the “in” color.   Quite frankly, I’m over Harvest Gold!…. So oooo over!

Thanks, to Dave Ramsey, I have been sticking to a budget… and one of my categories has been household repair and maintenance projects….and I have been faithfully putting away some money to do a few things that have been long overdue to be updated.

In September, hubby finished my “honey dew” list for him and I now have hot water in my kitchen… What a blessing!    I really enjoy doing my dishes now…

The other thing I wanted to get done was the hearth under the wood stove.   In July, I started by taking the old hearth out… only to find that it had been placed upon the carpet.  This would account for the cracking and breaking of the tile that was there.

Here is how my project looks in progression… after we started putting it together.  The original hearth was only as wide as the brick wall you see in the background and only came out from the wall as far as the hardibacker you see laying.     We decided to expand the area to include the door by where we would be bringing in wood from outside and come out from the wall another 6 inches.

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The plywood is screwed into the floor.

Right before I had  all the carpet cut out, hubby thought it would be a good idea to have the carpet cleaned and stretched… which we did and had our friends at Steamway of Sterling come and do that.  They did an excellent job and the carpet looks almost brand new!

We finished cutting the carpet out, hubby cut the plywood to size  and I screwed it into the subflooring.   The next step was to get the hardibacker cut to size…. to do this, hubby told me to talk to his sister and get his “saw”.   He stated “all you have to do is score it and then break it..”    So I talked to her and she said she had only had a sheetrock knife but she couldn’t find it so I went to Home Depot and bought what I thought she was talking about…

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My sheet rock knife!

Now right about now all you who know more about construction than I do are laughing your heads off but I have to tell you by the time I had “sawn” two sheets of hardibacker I was doing anything but laughing my head off… in fact, there were a few choice words I could have found to say if I knew any!   I was NOT a happy camper…

Now, you understand that I was sweating cold weather… I was trying to get this all done before cold/snowy weather appeared and my progress was anything but progressive!

Hubby came home and after calming his almost hysterical wife, he proceeded to finish the hardibacker cutting job… After which I screwed it all P1050839

into the plywood and sub flooring.  From there, hubby helped me get the tile laid and grouted… straight lines have never been my forte even if I have a pattern to follow but hubby’s gift is precision.

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The tile laid and grouted and ready to be cleaned.

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The completed project… ready for it’s first fire.

So there you have it… there’s a few things we want to tweak but we did get it in and ready to use before cold and snow moved in…

Until next time, love God, love others and when it comes to construction projects, make sure you’re talking the same language when talking with others more experienced than you!



Well, I’m back…..More on the flood of 2013
October 19, 2013, 12:41 pm
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The last time I was here, we were experiencing the devastating effects of a flood….some of us are still dealing with the aftermath….Almost 90 hours in a 2 week pay period has not left me with a lot of time to keep you updated but I took some pictures of places after the flood.   Take a look:

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A day or two prior to this picture being taken the water flowed over the road. (you can see a tiny bit of the road to the left of the water).

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This is a combine that was closer to the river and was deeper in water just a day or so earlier

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Fences retain evidences even now of the flood… it will take farmers and ranchers a while to repair these fences sufficiently to keep cattle/livestock in their pastures

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Along the river, outside it’s banks… this is after the waters were starting to recede

As you can see the waters are taking a while to recede and yesterday we woke up to 3″ of wet snow on the ground.   It was what we call a late fall or late spring snow because the moisture content is much greater than during the truly winter months’ snow.   You may think snow is snow but not here… There is wet snow and there is dry snow…

A wet snow may be common east of the Mississippi… I grew up where wet snow was common and because of it’s moisture content, quite often comes pretty much straight down.  However, here west of the Mississippi and on the Eastern Plains of Colorado, snow is more often dry and blows sideways with the wind instead of coming straight down.    There is usually very little moisture content in it during the months of December, January and February.  Because it snows sideways and is “lighter”, it drifts easier and though we can get only a couple of inches at a time, if it drifts and can drift some of our roads shut making travel difficult.

Though we woke up to 3″ of snow yesterday morning, by noon it had mostly melted.   A marvel to those who are used to snow sticking around a while once it does snow.   I was going to take pictures but I was running late for work soo… you’ll just have to imagine the magical wonder of snow covering in all of these pictures… the grass laying on the fence wires was iced with snow… the trees bowed themselves toward the ground with the weight of snow.

Until Next time… love God, love others and think of all the things you have to be grateful for today.



Is Spring on the Calendar this year?
April 29, 2013, 7:53 pm
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Well, spring may be on the calendar but this year, April has been our snowiest month.  In fact, we have had some kind of snowfall on every Tuesday of this month.   Last week we had snow and rain …

Now, don’t get me wrong we are soooo grateful for the moisture, but it does make for some rough passage of roads… One week we had tornadoes, thunderstorms, hail and snow… then some weeks, we just have snow… some times a measurable amount, sometimes just a dusting.   The moisture has helped with drought issues… though they say it will not actually take us out of drought.

This week we’ve been trying to get cattle out of the corrals and into the pastures (now that there is grass growing out in ’em) but it’s not been easy.   (You understand I use “we” in an all inclusive way… since I’m not actually involved in the moving of the cattle).  The moisture content in the corrals has made for a thick walk.. The dogs have had a high ole time until they discover they can’t come in the house thataway.

Between snow and muddy roads, it’s been a fun (tongue in cheek) time had by all.   The muddy roads make for slipping and a slidin’.    When our roads become saturated with moisture, it’s a lot like driving on automotive grease…lots of it!

Well, things warmed up and the roads were starting to dry out… now, this week… we have 90% chance of snow on Wednesday… well, at least they moved the day… ☺   We started the month with snow… and it looks like we’re ending it with snow!

What was that saying?    March showers bring April blizzards???  I may have that one wrong but that’s been our experience this year.    I can’t complain.  God’s been good to us.

Well, anyway, here’s to a  “more harmonious outcome” to the month of May for plantin’.. flowers and gardens!

Until next time, love God, love others and be grateful for what God sends.