Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Farm Safety - Our Story - Part 1

Farming can be a very full filling lifestyle and can bring much joy to a person's life.  It can also be dangerous, which you may not have been aware of.  I wanted to write on this subject because in 2011, my husband Milton had a farming accident. He (we) were fortunate because he is basically healed except for a few aches in the back area in the mornings or if he does certain work.

If you  know many farmers, you have probably seen them in action or heard them tell a story or two about completing a task in a "not so safe" manner.  It probably made you cringe if you are like me. Although Milton, on occasion, probably still does some things on the farm in a manner that I wouldn't qualify as the safest, I do know most of the time he stops and thinks and recalls the day he had his accident.

Before talking about farm safety, I would like to share about Milton's accident in hopes that others can learn from what happened.  I am all about learning, even if it it was me or my families poor choice that put us there.  

It was June 6, 2011, for you non-farmers, this means wheat harvest is right around the corner! Hence, major workload, long hours, and one of the busiest times of the year for us. Milton and his father were going to tighten up an electrical high line wire in the farmyard.  So when they drove the combine through the yard, the wire wouldn't catch on the top of it.  They were thinking ahead and practicing farm safety here! :)

Unfortunately, things can happen in a split second that can change one's life, whether it be for a short period of time or the rest of their lives.  They used a tractor to reach the high line.  Milton was in the bucket of the tractor, standing up and the bucket was extended to its maximum about 12 feet. Below is an example of it extended.

At this point you are thinking, "ok this is unsafe standing in a tractor bucket with it extended". Why would he ever do that!  It's the highest thing we have to reach the high line wires.  No excuse but I am sure there are many farmers out there that use their farm equipment for things that they were never created for.

The tractor needed to be moved, JUST SLIGHTLY.   This is where his "choice" made all the difference. Although the amount of space the tractor needed to be moved was MINIMAL, he made the choice to not sit down IN the bucket, but instead sat on the back edge of it.  The tractor accidently jerked verses smoothly moving and he fell to the ground. (about 12 feet) On his way down, he hit the tractor hood.

The dent is still there.

As I write this I still get a  sick feeling to my stomach, my heart swells, and tears come to my eyes imagining it. I would like to add that my emotions were probably heightened, at this time, by the fact that in our community, we had lost a beloved individual in a farming accident earlier in the year.

I was not at home when Milton fell, I was at work which was about 20 miles away  My mother in law called me at work soon after it occurred while waiting on the ambulance to arrive.  I had to wait to see which hospital he would be going to, and that seemed like forever! Fortunately, even in his time of pain, Milton thought of his wife, he chose to be taken to the hospital in the town where I worked, although he probably would have preferred the other one!

Walking into the ER room and seeing my husband laying on the table and unable to really move much, it made my heart ache and shout for joy at the same time!  I won't go into the emotional part but I was glad he was alive and I was sad because he was in pain.

My husband is a person that is an outdoors, physical working, non sitting individual pretty much all the time.  So you can imagine how he was feeling right about then, along with many other emotions I am sure!

After much time, they transported him to a hospital in Wichita, Ks.  Milton ended up with a broken left tibia (leg) and  his back had compressed vertebrae about 10 %.    They did surgery the next day to insert a plate in his left leg.  The back injury there wasn't really anything they could do, but he did wear a brace for sometime.  His broken leg made it so he could not put weight on it, which meant he was on crutches for sometime.  He also had to take physical therapy after a few weeks passed.  Although his injuries were bad, we are extremely thankful he wasn't hurt any worse that is for sure!  This experience was one that tested many aspects of our life that is a fact, but we grew from it as well, and that is what counts.

Wheat harvest didn't wait on the healing, it arrived and unfortunately my husband was stuck in the house watching talk shows, soap operas, lifetime movies, and the 12:00 news!  (He is going to love me for that sentence!) Luckily, two of his brothers helped throughout harvest to get the work done! We are thankful!

You know they say you can't keep a good man/farmer down.  Yep, he got the itch and HAD to go out to cut some wheat, although no weight was to be put on his leg!  (Yes you can imagine how I reacted, it's probably pretty close to correct!)

See the ladder... that's how he got up to the top, backwards! Genius isn't he??? :)

Oh, by the way, it's tradition for me to take a photo of Milton & PV on the combine during wheat harvest. We did get one that year!

There are reminders of this farm accident around us.  Milton feels pain in his back sometimes, the dent in the tractor, or the scar on his left leg.  But even if those things weren't present, I think he/we would recall that summer day in 2011 periodically.  That day created in us a reason to slow down, think farming tasks or even daily life tasks through more, and cherish the life we have here on earth. We hope that you can take a piece of insight from our story, so you may not have to go through a similar lesson.

Now that you know the story, my next post will deal more with Farm Safety information.  Please be sure to check it out!

Thanks for stopping by!

* note - Milton did pre-approve this post! :)

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

KVH 20 year celebration!

My middle daughter turns 20 today!  
I wanted to celebrate her life in my post!

1. I'm thankful I'm the one you call Mom.
2. Your artistic abilities are a treasure!
3. Your laid back personality is opposite of me and I have come to enjoy it tremendously!
4. I learned some quality lessons in raising you, PV will benefit no doubt!
5. When you laugh, it's contagious and it brings me so much joy!
6. Your outdoor photography is amazing - I'm anxiously waiting to see your portfolio of all your shots!
7. I'm glad to see as you grow into an adult woman, alittle more of me in you, (I thought maybe you only got my hair thickness! :) lol
8.  I love how you respect me enough to put your nose ring away for pictures!
9.  I secretly always loved how you have always "defended" your step-dad when I nag too much!
10. The "black"phase - so glad you grew out of that!
11. Music -  I'm estasic you love it as much as I do!
12. I love it when you call me to ask about something you are cooking!
13. I am excited to see the creations you are going to make with your sewing machine!
14. Your big beautiful brown eyes are just the surface of a great soul within!
15. Your title as Aunt - you rock at it!
16. Your hard work ethic is one thing I will always be proud of!
17. I was scared, proud, and envious when you left for California the first time!
At 19, I was no where near the woman you are in the adventure area!
18. Wife, Daughter, Sister, Aunt, Friend - these titles you hold, nourish each one often!
19.  I pray for you daily, mostly that whatever you pursue in life, you have contentment!
20. Being your mother has been many things, but mostly it's been one of the best things to ever           happen to me.  I can't wait to see what you do, create, become in the years ahead

I love you Kassidy Lynn! Happy 20th Birthday!


This is one of my all time favorite photos of her!

Isn't my little girl just lovely all dressed up! 
Her hubby isn't too bad either! GO MARINES!

Ok, my son-in-law is super silly in this photo, but I ABSOLUTELY love the way Kassidy looks here! Happy and sweet all wrapped up in one!

This photo is a treasure FOREVER... cause it doesn't happen often enough! (in fact I have one JUST like it when she was about 1.5 years old! LOVE IT!) 

And this one.... I just love it cause I'm with her!

Check out some of Kassidy's photography from years past here!

Thanks for celebrating my child's life with me!
Have a great day & come back soon!


Kassidy (KVH) has been mentioned here!

KVH's Photography Spot -1

Enjoy a few photography shots my daughter has taken over the years!

Saturday, November 24, 2012

2013, Ideas, and Prize......

Hi, since the new year is not so far away, I thought I would gather ideas about what you would like to hear about from this thing we call life in 2013!  I know! Can you believe it's going to be 2013! WOW!

I started this blog in August and have kind of let is transpire as it has. I don't want to bore people so bring on the ideas!  I would love to know what peaks your interest, what brings a smile to your face, or what you want to know more about!  If it's something I am not too familiar with I will give it my best try!

What parts of this blog have you most enjoyed?  Farming, Kitchen Experience, HIM, Family, which sections bring you a smile when you see the "label" you are most fond of show up!

The 1st and 7th  and 15th commenter get a nice little treat/prize too! (I am leaning towards chocolate.....)  I will even mail it if you don't live in the area! You must comment on my blog though so I can keep track.  :)

I appreciate all input and hope you have a wonderful Holiday season that is upon us!

Thanks for stopping by!


Thursday, November 22, 2012


Throughout the month I have seen quite a few blogs and status updates about being thankful.  November is an obvious month to be reminded to be thankful; since the Thanksgiving holiday presents itself.  I debated about writing a post about all the things I am thankful for, and  I also considered announcing I was going to express my thankfulness in another month of the year.  Just to be a rebel! :)

After attending the Thanksgiving service at our church last evening, I felt moved to share about part of it.
The particular part of the service that seemed to speak to my heart is below.  As all in attendance spoke the bold face words together, I had to smile. These words, although at first may look like simple words, brought great emotion and gladness within me.  Such simple phrases or words, yet so very profound and true.  I pray they bring you a piece of gladness as well.

May your Thanksgiving be blessed and may all the days of our lives, WE BE THANKFUL.


The First Article: Creation
I believe in God, the Father Almighty, maker of heaven and earth.

What does this mean?

I believe that God has made me and all creatures; that He has given me my body and soul, eyes, ears, and all my member, my reason and all my senses and still takes care of them.

He also gives me clothing and shoes, food and drink, house and home, wife and children, land, animals and all I have. He richly and daily provides me with all that I need to support this body and life.

He defends me against all danger and guards and protects me from all evil. All this He does only out of fatherly, divine goodness and mercy, without any merit or worthiness in me. 

For all this it is my duty to thank and praise, serve and obey Him. 

This is most certainly true.

 If you would like to become more familiar with Martin Luther, you can by visiting here to read about him.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Mentor - Just a few questions!

Before I really dive into this post, I wanted to say that I am quite interested in other people's perspective and hope to get a lot of response to this particular post.  So feel free to share on your Facebook or other types of social media pages.  

My questions are at the end of the post.The questions are generic based and your answers do not have to be faith based.  People have mentors for many things in life including but not limited to education, work, and family.

The definition of Mentor online is:

1. A wise and trusted counselor or teacher.
2. An influential senior sponsor or supporter.

I would like to tell you why I have chosen the subject of my post to be Mentor.  About 9 months ago, I started feeling an idea grow within me. The idea was that I needed to find a mentor to help me grow in my faith life.  I began praying about it, and honestly, at times I let it go to the wayside. But it never completely went away. A few people have crossed my mind that might be a good match, but only time will tell.

Since this is new territory for me, I wanted to gather information and ideas from others! That is where you come in! Although the timing and decision will be mine (with much prayer),  I welcome all your willingness to aide in this journey.

At this time, I would like to express my gratitude for those of you willing to share your knowledge, experiences, perspective, and ideas on the matter! Thank you!


* If you have had a mentor in your life, what was the #1 asset they brought to your life?

* Do you think someone can be a mentor and not even be aware that they are mentoring you?

*Does the mentor need to be the same gender as you?

* How do you think you would feel if someone asked you to be their mentor? An honor or burden?

*If you could have a mentor, what are three things you would like them to provide for or to you?

* Do you feel the mentor should be older then you?

*Did your experience have any negatives?  

*How often did you meet?

*What advice would you provide to someone seeking a mentor from your experience?

*Provide any other information (books, ideas, prayers that would aide me)

Comment below (with name or anonymous), comment on my Facebook page where I shared this, or you can email me at!

Once again Thanks!

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Things that brought me Joy!

I hope your weekend brought you alot of joy! Whether in little packages or in bundles and bundles of large ones! Here are a few shots of what brought me some joy! Our grandaughter came to visit Friday night! I love watching PV and her play together! Just alot of laughter going on this normally pretty quiet house!

 Little Miss Sweetness!

Little Miss Diva!

Silly Girl!

Oh I think they played too hard! :) Angels!

The next morning!
This picture brought me the BEST joy! 
It is SO funny! I love it!

We attended a family wedding this weekend too!
Nothing like alittle dancing to bring some joy!
Daddy & Daughter dancing! Priceless!

 Have a great week everyone!


Memory Verse - 8

Let the fruit that GOD placed within each of you grow! 
It is already there, just bring it to life!

Galatians 5:22- 23

The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Did you know.....

Did you know that November 17, 2012 is National Adoption Day!  In fact, the entire month of November is National Adoption Month!

You can find out more about it's history etc  by clicking here! If you are interested in Foster care or adoption, please click here. For Kansas specific, please click here.

Adoption is a subject that is special to my heart (and my families).  PV became our daughter through adoption, ( and of course GOD's grace.)  Which I am thankful for daily!  I would like to celebrate National Adoption Month by sharing her birth/adoption story.
Milton and I decided we wanted to have a child together,( TKS and KVH are from a previous marriage for me), and I am unable to carry a child myself, so that led us to alternative routes for a child. Neither one of Milton or I had any knowledge really when beginning either one of the following routes. 

It was like beginning a recipe, only without instructions, and not sure what ingredients were needed, but we knew what we wanted at the end!  The internet became a wonderful resource, along with other people and books.  We are thankful for all of them, as our recipe for our family ended up turning out pretty fabulous we think! 
First, we traveled down the path of gestational surrogacy with the aide of a beautiful human that we consider a close and dear friend.  Our attempt to create a child with a part of each of us did not result in a birth. The road was difficult but I would not change it for a moment, as it is part of our marriage story, and it built us up in strength and character, as all good journeys do.  Perhaps I will write of that journey later.
Once that door closed, adoption became the next avenue for us.  We still desired an infant, so the advice we heard was that it would be a long wait.  Not only because we desired an infant, but we weren't young pups and there were lots of people desiring an infant. We researched extensively and prayed, and decided a domestic adoption through a Kansas agency was the best fit for our family. 

I won't bore you with too many details on it but there is a great deal of paperwork, rules, regulations, choices, time, money, emotions, prayer and energy spent just to get activated! I am exhausted just remembering! I thought about creating a timeline for my readers but after writing this post (it's long), I decided I was too tired!  I would do every emotion, every hurdle, every joy again in our quest for PV! No doubt!

We began our adoption journey May 5, 2006 and our daughter was born on March 28, 2008.  So you can see it took awhile!  We visited with a local attorney and decided we needed exposure to be chosen.  So we found a Kansas adoption agency, jumped through hoops, and were activated, and on their website by September 2006.  The waiting began and my issue of not letting go of control grew anxiety within me.  I did eventually find distractions (exercise, creating the nursery, etc) to keep me from going completely insane!  

In early January 2008, we decided to try and find some different avenues to get us closer to our destination.  After 17 months, we were still waiting and I began researching online.  I found an adoption consultant out of Pennsylvania and we decided to complete an application and pay the fee.  What could it hurt right!? 

Later in January the original adoption agency contacted us.  One time was to have permission to show our profile to a birthmother that was outside our criteria,  we were not chosen by her. The second time was actually about a child that had just been born.  We had an hour and a half to decide if we were interested in taking this child. It was extremely difficult for Milton and I, and we spent that time praying, talking, and praying some more.  We were led by our prayers and talking to the result that we were not this child's forever family.  No one knows what that feels like unless you have been through it. I pray  you understand and continue to read our story, for in reality, it is God's story for our lives.

In mid February, we knew our profile was being shown, (through the adoption consultant, through an adoption agency in Pennsylvania) to a birthmother.  To be honest, I was quite laid back (not the norm for me!) and didn't fret about this, in fact I recall a calmness.  I now look back and see it was God's grace giving me the calm before a storm.  A storm that created beautiful yet crashing waves in an ocean of emotion, lightning to show light at the end of a long tunnel, and soft rain to rest my weary head upon his lap for strength.

I received a telephone call on February 22, 2008. I can shut my eyes and remember vividly how I felt, where I was, who was with me, and the time of day. (in the car, in my driveway, with KVH next to me, and it was evening time.) My cell phone rang and I answered, the adoption consultant was on the phone.  (I am not making the next part up either!) She began to talk and I JUST KNEW, by the tone of her voice, that we were NOT chosen by the birthmom.  I AM SO GLAD I WAS WRONG!  

She proceeded to tell me we had been chosen and some information about the birthmom.  I was sitting in my car, and I began to express excitement by pumping my hands and feet in the air!  (yet the lady on the phone would not have known it!) Yes, KVH loved it, she was a teen then so you can imagine how much! I tried to stay focused and listen to the information she was explaining.  KVH headed in the house, and I stayed in the car to finish the conversation. But as soon as it was over, I high tailed it into the house, shut the door, and began to jump up and down and scream with JOY!

Guess what.... Milton wasn't home.  He was about 20 minutes away from me in another town! The one night he decides to go out with friends! There was no way I was telling him this news on the phone! I called him and told him some "thing" and had him meet me at Casey's (gas station).  Yep, that's where I told him the news and it was a beautiful moment! Who needs candlelight, ambiance, or soft music! WE GOT CHOSEN!

So things progressed and as I have mentioned PV was born March 28, 2008.  So we had alittle over a month to prepare.  Honestly, I am glad it went this way. Where we didn't have very long to wait , did I mention I have control issues!There was paperwork to do, information to share, phone calls to be made, plane tickets to be bought, rules and regulations of adopting outside of Kansas to follow, sonograms to hear about, due dates to be told, and lots of praying. The storm had started increasing in volume.  I had a couple meltdowns during this time, but I think all in all we survived well!

The due date changed a couple times.  We didn't know if we were going to be able to be there when PV was born or not.  Lucky for us, she was scheduled to be born by C-section in Pennsylvania.  I received the call on March 25, 2008 that it was scheduled for March 28, 2008.  SO! I got online and bought some plane tickets!  We flew out on the 27th! We left behind our two older daughters, family and friends, all praying for a safe trip and the return of a third member to our family.  

- Note- in Pennslyvania, birthmothers can not sign their rights away for at least 72 hours/ 3 days. 

At about 8:10 am, on March 28, 2008, I totally forgot about the paper pregnancy I endured (which by the way, I think is harder than actually carry babies, just my opinion, since I have had two by birth with no pain medication!)

PV was born at 7:57am and by 8:10 am, we were in the nursery falling instantly in love with our daughter.  She was crying, they were cleaning her up, putting an IV in, and preparing the oxygen "caketop" because she had lost some oxygen on her way out. She also had some fluid in her lungs so they began treating her for that.

SHE WAS BEAUTIFUL! The 2nd best sight of that day, was watching my husband fall in love with his child. The child GOD intended him to be Father of.  I am so glad I looked over to see my husband's face. Priceless!

Since PV was on oxygen, we were unable to hold her.

I want to say right here that the nurses were FABULOUS at the hospital that she was born at.  They welcomed us in and never made us feel out of place. They were just the best!  We were actually alone in a nursery the entire 4 days she was in the hospital.  The regular nursery was quite full!  (I like to think this was a God moment!)  We stayed next to her and talked to her, and held her little hand until late in the night.

The next morning as we walked in the nursery we saw our little bundle of joy with no "caketop", bathed, and we were excited! That meant we got to hold her! 

We were able to bond with our child, care for her, feed her, change her, and bathe her in the next couple days.  The last night we got to stay in a hospital room with her and we left the hospital on March 31st for our our home away home.

That was Comfort Suites hotels!  I think this is why PV LOVES to go to hotels/motels now! Seriously, she gets all giddy & excited!  We stayed in them for about 11 days, and then stayed about 5 days in a more "home setting" place.  

We were in Pennsylvania for 14 days total including the day we flew out.  The birthmother has to complete her documents and then each State (Kansas and Pennsylvania) have to approve for us to travel.  Needless to say, our stay was 14 days long.  That is alittle long to be in a new state, winter months, with a newborn, etc.  I look back now and wouldn't change it for the world though.  If we had come right home, we would not have had that time alone, just the three of us, to bond with one another.  Milton would have went right back to work pretty quickly and visitors would have been over to meet the lovely little vessel!  
On the final day, we were at the airport (literally). Milton was parking the car and when he got to us in the airport he had just received the call that we were clear to fly home to Kansas! I call this another God moment.... cause that Daddy wasn't about to stay any longer! PV did great flying, Mommy and Daddy were quite nervous about it though! She slept through most of it! It was a late flight!

Along with all the ups and downs of our stay in Pennsylvania, my father was extremely sick and hospitalized.  They were not sure he would make it and that was a difficult thing for me.  We had to decide if I should stay or come home.  We chose to stay together as a family unit.  

The very next morning, upon returning to Kansas, we headed to the hospital to have Grandpa meet his newest grandaughter.  I can recall walking down the hall, getting close to his room, and looking up. He was sitting up in his bed, arms extended to take this "little angel" from me.  It was the best feeling!

Here is where she got to meet her big sisters!

This our family on the day PV was baptized~!

PV knows she is adopted. We began early on telling her about her birth story, and how God chose us to be her family.  We aren't sure what lies ahead and there are lots of things we do not know, but we put our faith in God to provide the answers and strength. Just like we did on our adoption journey.

As I wrote this post, many emotions stirred within me.  I looked through scrapbooks, journal, and photos to relive one of the best decisions we ever made. I enjoyed it and am so thankful I could write this post.  As I tell PV (often) "I'm so glad God chose me to be YOUR Mommy!"  She is a blessing from HIM.

Although you may not be interested in adopting a child  yourself.  You can still support those that choose to adopt and it will mean alot I promise. It can be as simple as you could be a sounding board, a much needed hug, an invitation out for fun, or a sitter for the foster children they have.

If you have comments or questions about adoption, please feel free to comment below or email me privately.  I would be happy to visit with you! I don't know it all, but I can at least relate alittle!

Thanks for stopping by!

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

The Little Brown Envelope

I saw these little brown envelopes at a craft store recently.  

They are 3.5 x 5 and plain as the day is long!  But when I saw them, I just fell in love with them!   

When I bought them, I actually had no idea what I was going to use them for.  Yep, I think that is impulse buying at it's best isn't it?

BUT!  I did figure out how to fill this plain envelope with a little dose of love!  I was busy working on my annual calendars I give away and  I saw them laying on the table.  I then got distracted and began to make these little cards to fit inside!

Just like the envelopes, they are simple, small, and sweet!  

I hope the recipients can feel the love that went into them as they were made!  I probably should have waited until after Christmas to share this idea, as I plan to give them in "little packets" of 5 to friends as gifts!  Oh well!

Did I mention I love to send and receive cards!?  I hope these little brown envelopes spread much joy from my house, to my friends, to whomever they choose to share them with!

Thanks for stopping by!

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Grazing Cattle

Grazing cattle on a wheat field/crop is another option to assist in the expense of feeding cattle.  First, they built a temporary electric fence around the field.  Below you can see the teamwork in action!
I just love the "Camo Hat Team" ! :)

You are probably wondering how they can eat and graze on the wheat and we still have a wheat crop come next summer.  The wheat's growing point is below ground currently, similar to grass, so the cattle eating the "green wheat", above ground doesn't harm the plant. 

When the temperature gets below a certain point, the wheat goes into dormancy, and no longer grows for the winter. When it warms back up, during the spring, the wheat comes out of dormancy and begins to grow once again.  When the growing point gets above ground, the farmer has to be sure to not graze cattle any longer.  If they graze, it will damage the crop.

On a daily basis they take the cattle to the field to graze and then late afternoon bring them back into the pen for the night. Yesterday PV and I assisted in bringing in the cattle. 

Here are a few photos of our experience!

I love this picture! Trusty dog & Owner!

If you have any questions or comments, please be sure to leave them!
I would love to hear from you! 

Thanks for stopping by!

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Old Cd Case = Delightful Christmas Gift!

I thought today I would share one of the few crafts I do for some of my friends and family each Christmas. It offers a homemade gift with a personal touch from their lives.

First you will want to collect various items, starting with a CD case, one like you can buy with blank cd's in it. 

Then some scrapbook items such as cardstock, stickers, rub on letters, chipboard, flowers, etc.  Whatever your little heart desires!

For the calendar, I usually just google online and find a small template.  I found this one here.
Then you cut the months apart.

Sometimes I stick with a certain color theme, such as black, white, red or earth tones, or I change it up and do each month any color I want for the cardstock!  Cut the cardstock to fit in the cd case, mine are 6 x 6.5.

The one below is an example without photos. Sometimes I add the photos for the recipient or I allow them to put their own. 
Here is an example with two different size photos. I print them wallet size or contact size on my printer at home.  I have also had photos printed at a department store as well. 

I do not decorate the case but I am sure you could. I do make a cover page with their name and the year.

Here are a few that I have done in years past.
This one is the first one I completed for gifts for this coming Christmas (2012).

If you have any ideas on how to enchance this little project or an easy craft for gifts I would love to hear about them! Please comment below, and thank you for stopping by!