Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Boasting and Blogging and Mouth Makeover!

I'm currently attending a weekly bible study.  The name of the study we are doing is "Bless These Lips" 40 days of Spiritual Renewal by Sharla Fritz.


























It uses makeup essentials to help us relate to how we use our mouth.  It uses phrases such as  Belittling Berry, Cheering Cherry, Criticizing Cranberry, and so on .  A mouth makeover is definitely needed by me!  Does this sound interesting or needed in your life?

When we started this study, I found it good at the same time I felt a large amount of guilt.  Because the things that were pointed out, um.... ya .... definitely me at times.  So I guess it's a good thing I am in this study!

The reason I am writing about this particular subject is because last week's study was on boasting.  It got me to thinking during the study, "is my blog boasting?"  Do I come across as boastful?  Is that what we are doing, showing off our lives to others?  

I hope not.  I hope those of you that read our blog know that we do it out of educating about farm life, journal our family story, expressing the love of God we have, and sharing one of my passions of cooking.  But this is still on my mind and I will continue to ponder it!

The other thing that got me really thinking was how I sometimes interrupt people because I HAVE to tell something similar to what they spoke about! Or how about, are you ever visiting with a friend, and they are sharing some wonderful happy news about their lives.  Do you feel a pang of envy, a tad a jealousy?  Yea, me too, I've felt it.  I'm a big enough person to admit it.  Do you "one up" them?  You know, for example, " Oh! Johnny did that at six months or my Jenny she finished her test with a...... " .  You get the picture, right? 

The bible says we are to honor one another.  So in turn, when listening to a friend share about the happiness currently in her life or they post a fabulous picture facebook, twitter, or instagram, honor them.

We are not to interrupt when they are talking, even if you are BURSTING with a tidbit of something that similar occurred in your life, and don't keep from commenting or liking that photo because you are feeling that pang of envy.  Remove the envy and jealousy, I think I will be trying to remember this verse to assist me with this.


"Let the one who boast, boast in the Lord."  2 Corinthians 10:17

The significant verse that has aided me in my life during this study is below:

"But He said to me, "My grace is sufficient for you, for My power is made perfect in my weakness. " Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me.  For the sake of Christ, then, I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities.  For when I am weak, then I am strong.
2 Corinthians 12: 9-10

The lines in red, those are the ones that hit me hard this past week.  See, I don't do weakness too well and recently that is exactly what I have been feeling. Weak. This opened up a new view in my mind of my life and how I need to be, live, and believe.  It isn't an overnight change, I'm struggling, but I feel comfort in knowing this.  Perhaps it will aide you too. Comfort in knowing our Father is here, His grace is ever present when we are in our weakest state.

Things I've already taken away from this study are:


  • The people I am interacting with, when you have a mouth mishap or interrupt or don't respond - your hurting God, not only the individual!
  • Self help tips on applying makeup and making your own lip balm!
  • That in my weaknesses- God's power is made perfect!
  • That praising God- using the ABC's does help you go back to sleep! (Thanks EK for this idea after using it!)
  • That God is enough.
  • Don't talk over and interrupt people, even if I want to share something at THAT moment about me, let them finish, ask questions about what they told you.  
  • Ways to encourage your children.
  • HONOR others. 
  • Try active listening to your spouse, stop what you are doing, and pay attention.
  • Checking off the Lipstick Lesson list wasn't so fun... but much needed... Nagging Nectarine, Interrupting Ivory, Boastful Burgundy..... and on and on.. 
  • That friends in faith, can help hold you accountable and make you feel it's ok to not be perfect, thanks gals for always feeling comfortable to share your experiences with me present.

We are not completely through the study, we still have a few weeks.  I'm joyful I attended this time and am hoping I can retain all the ideas and lessons given to me in this study.  

This post was written because I wanted to share what I learned, not to boast of my faith or that I know more or act better.  I don't, I know this.  I hope you take something away from this post and pass the knowledge forward to a friend.


This study could  be done on your own or with a group, I highly recommend it.  One place to purchase the book is here.  

Hope I got you inspired, it helped me to blog it!  Thanks for stopping by!

Julie

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Wheat Harvest 2013 - Further Into It

Well we are a good  6 days into wheat harvest and have 
approximately 300 acres of the 900 cut.




We've had a couple breakdowns that have slowed us a tad, but rain has only sprinkled, and held us out of the field a minor 15 minutes or such. In the 10 years I have been in the family, I don't recall the combine, or this year the header, having many breakdowns.  So I presume it is time, just like our bodies, the equipment wears out.  Although I have even heard in the area about a fire that was caused by a bearing falling out of a brand new combine.  
So there is always a risk with anything, farming wouldn't be any different!



First, as you read HERE, we had a bearing go out on the header.  Milton replaced a few items while having the wobble (isn't that a funny word! wobble wobble wobble!)box tore apart.  Then about 9:30 pm last night the sickle broke on the header. 
 So they called it a night, and brought the combine and trucks home.  




Early this morning at 6:00 am my husband rose and headed back to the farm yard.  

Time to inspect the damaged sickle. 







The sickle is the long metal item on the ground that Milton is inspecting.
It cuts the wheat.

 I wondered over there about 45 minutes later and he was deciding whether he should try to weld it or not. Yes, the farm wife actually said (because she is tired of breakdowns and no hubby at home mind you) "can't you just buy a new one?  You weld it, it breaks again, and it puts you further behind, right?"  He looks at me, thinks some more, I leave.  When I come back searching for him with farm daughter in tow, Dad in law tells me they are getting a new one.  SEE!  Farm wife Julie does know a good thing... once in awhile! :) Haha HeHe!

Here's a photo of harvested wheat close up!


PV is sweeping the wheat into the pit.  
The trucks unload the wheat into the pit, 
then it goes up into the auger, and 
down into the appropriate grain bin.




Wheat isn't the only thing currently growing at our farm.
ONE of the other crops is CORN! Irrigated corn!
I wanted to show you how tall it is now so I put PV next to it!

This morning Milton was heading to get soybeans to be planted.
We plant other crops in the fields where wheat was harvested.
We do this for a few reasons, such as crop rotation is better for the soil and fields, 
this aides in keeping unwanted weeds at bay, and if the crop is good producing, 
there is probably extra income as well.

This is not insurable and we take a risk. 
But we feel it's worth the risk to have that extra income.
The other reason we plant crops after the wheat is to rotate the crops.
This usually creates better crops and aides the soil.

Grain Sorghum or Milo will be planted as well. 
June and the first part of July are extremely busy times for our farm.   

I just had to throw this photo in!
Someone is missing her Dad! 
 So he got extra hugs & back scratches this morning from her!


I will end with the view that Milton had from his combine cab last night.
It was pretty amazing.
You all know how we love a good sunset!
Praise be to God for this beauty and the plentiful harvest before us!



Thanks for stopping by!
Julie

Roasted Mushrooms in Garlic Parmesan Sauce

I think I have mentioned before how much Milton & I love mushrooms.  Seriously, we do! I can't believe only 1 out of our 3 daughters enjoys these delicious little pods of yumminess!
Can you guess which one???

Well I recently ran across a new scuptious recipe for mushrooms over at 

Seriously, her photos I fell in love with and then when I made this recipe.
I fell in love in with it!

If you like mushrooms you must try this one!


Yields 4 - 6 servings.


Ingredients:

Non-stick cooking spray
16 oz. whole button mushrooms, washed and stems removed
1 tablespoon butter, cut into small pieces
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
3 - 4 fresh thyme sprigs
1 cup heavy cream
Salt
Pepper
1/4 cup shredded or grated Parmesan cheese

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Heat cream, garlic and thyme sprigs over medium-low heat in a small saucepan for about 5 minutes.  (Do not bring to a boil.)  Turn off heat and allow to steep while you proceed with the next steps.  NOTE I only had dried thyme, I used it, it worked!

Coat a 12" round or 9 x 13" casserole dish with non-stick spray.

Place mushrooms top-side up in one layer in baking dish.  Dot pieces of butter around mushrooms.  Drizzle mushrooms with olive oil.  Sprinkle on a little salt and a good amount of black pepper.


Pour the cream mixture over the mushrooms and bake.
Bake for 30 minutes.

Then turn the oven to 400 degrees, sprinkle the parmesan cheese on top.
Put back into oven for 10 minutes or until cheese is melted.

Serve immediately!

I used the left over cream sauce the next day. 
 I cooked some pasta and put it over that for my lunch.  It was delish! 
 You could make this dish and serve over an entire bowl of pasta too!

Thanks for stopping by!
Julie



Saturday, June 22, 2013

Wheat Harvest 2013 - A Few Days In

It's Saturday and the 5 year old woke up and stated first thing she wanted to ride in the combine with Dad!  Honestly, I am surprised she lasts as long as she does, but I think she enjoys her time alone with Daddy! I'm grateful for her willingness!

They began cutting about 10:00 am.  I later found out when I took him lunch that she had taken  her small electric piano with her that morning!  :)  Yes Daddy didn't get hard rock, but he did get lovely piano music with serenading by PV I'm sure! :)































I was able to makeup for the Peanut butter and Homemade Jam sandwich my husband received for dinner on Friday night.  I made roast beef with peppers/onions, and provolone cheese on a hoagie bun.  He seemed to have enjoyed it, and those Snickerdoodles I mentioned on our Facebook page.  Yea, he liked those even better!  So I am in the process of making a 2nd batch for the upcoming week.  I threw in homemade potato salad for lunch too!  Tomorrow we will be pulling one of those freezer meals from this post out to enjoy after church!

Unfortunately, the combine header decided to have a bearing go out.  So here came the combine back to the farm yard this afternoon, and Dad in law headed out on a parts run.  This isn't what a farmer really wants during harvest, but things happen.  My husband is pretty patient, but now that we are into a couple hours  of this, his fuse is alittle shorter than usual!  
Bearings inside this are broke!




















Time to take it apart!




















Trying to take another section apart

I have done what I can to help.  I've taken water over and given him moral support.  At times I feel like that is all I can do.  Nourish him with food, be kinder than usual, rub his sore back, and bring him drinks!  I'm so glad I can at least do that for him. He works very hard for our family.

I wanted to show this photo, because as I sit in the combine with him, alot of times I am amazed how well he handles this large piece of equipment!  Perhaps I can video him sometime! :) 

While driving the combine he is constantly watching the sides of the header to make sure he is catching all the wheat, so not to miss any.  The steering wheel controls this of course, but he does it himself. The lever his right hand is on, that one is for the header.  It controls the header speed and to go up and down.  Milton is very smooth at maneuvering this large piece of equipment.  When he unloads getting close to the edge of the ditch to reach the semi truck, and when turning around.  He drives like its alittle tiny car... just cool to me!  


















Well I am going to go ahead & publish this post although the repairs are on their way to being finished!  The new parts are being put on as I type!  Hopefully he can get back into the field tonight!

Thanks for stopping by!
Julie

Friday, June 21, 2013

She's 25 today and I'm wondering how that happened???

Our  oldest daughter turned 25 today.  Tashley !

25.... 
I'm not sure how that happened.

I recall turning 25, it wasn't that long ago, I'm sure of it! :) How can she be turning 25!

But let's not talk about me!


I wanted to celebrate her here on the blog.  In the years I have been her Mother there have been ups and downs of course.  One thing is true though, I have loved her as long as I can recall, and I'm thankful I chose life for her.
























Things I love about this gal!

  • Her smile.
  • Her ability to cook.
  • Her ability to want to give others "little gifts".
  • That she allowed me to participate in so much of her life as a teenager.
  • The fact that she is a Mom herself, and a good one.
  • That she forgives easily.
  • That she's working hard as a single mother to provide for her daughter.
  • That she allowed me to grow up with her!
That only names a few, but she is a person that I'm proud to call my daughter.  I am thankful she gets to call me Mom.

My wishes for you Tashley are:

May you lean on those only when truly needed, find the strength within when needed, it's there I promise, have a heart of giving, and continue to strive for contentment in life.






I love this photo of her & E!  
Just sweetness all around!













Happy Birthday my sweet girl! 
 Happy 25th Birthday!







Thursday, June 20, 2013

Wheat Harvest 2013 - Day 1

June 2o, 2013   5:20 p.m

That's when the first cut of wheat was!  
Combine was running as I pulled up with our little gal PV to ride with Daddy!  
We have a tradition, annual photo with the combine!  
Check them out! 
2008 - 2013


Since it's getting late, I will just post pictures!  :)







Discussions on whether to proceed or not....




More discussion on events!


Alittle cozy, quality family time!  I am thinking this might be the last year we ALL 
3 fit together in the cab of the combine !  :(




Thanks for stopping by!  
We will have more photos I am sure in the next few days!
Happy Wheat Harvest all!
Free combine rides available if you are in the area!

Julie & Milton





Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Waiting Wheat or Waiting Farmer?

It is June 19, 2013 and wheat harvest has begun in our county.  Not in full speed but as we drove to our daughter's Tball game this evening there was 
evidence of some local farmers "trying it out".

My farmer announced this afternoon that he may "try it out" tomorrow, 
but first they need to finish up some work on their combine.  
They have to make a parts run and then work on it.  
Of course, weather is still a huge factor as always.

Milton did go to a few fields today to take a gander.  
He took a wheat head, got some kernels, and crush them in his hand.  
The results varied, some were soft and others were pretty hard, closer to harvest.

When it comes time to harvest the wheat they will test the moisture.  
This is a key factor in determining if it is ready to cut.  
We like to see our moisture in the area of 12, but you can store wheat at 13 or 14.
The majority of our wheat is stored in grain bins on our farm.
Then hauled to the elevator later, perhaps even several months later.

Some of our wheat is laying down from the heavy rains recently.  
That will be more difficult to cut, but we will give it our best shot!  
We also have wheat that looks good and still standing!


When wheat harvest begins it brings many things.

Long days.
Dinners on tailgates.
Late nights
Pride filled moments of growing and harvesting your crop.
Repairs to be done.  (hope not) 
Combine rides for young and old.
What we would call "high traffic" on the country roads for a couple weeks.
Memories made and lessons taught.
The sound of dryer bins running in my backyard.
Photos to be taken, a blog post or two to write.
Dirty and exhausted farmers at the end of the day.
Mommy reading all the bedtime stories for a couple weeks.
Family working side by side and lucky I get to document it.
Wheat will be harvested.


Wheat harvest is started with lots of adrenaline.  

It ends with exhaustion and......

pride for completing another crop rotation.
pride for helping feed the world.
pride to know that you are continuing a legacy.

From our Family Farm to yours!
Thanks for stopping by!
Julie & Milton



Sunday, June 16, 2013

This Past Week On the Farm

This past week on the farm included but not limited to.......


..... Trucks and combines had the interiors and exteriors washed and cleaned in preparation for the upcoming wheat harvest.

..... Milo/Grain Sorghum was planted.  Two seperate locations with a few hiccups.  Alittle issue with the fertilizer monitors.  But all went well and it's in the ground!

...... Chickens were tended to by little girls.  We leave the "little door" open all the time now.  That way they can come and go in their run as they please.  She gives them fresh water daily and checks on them at least once a day!


























...... Craft room supplies were put away in the new craft closet built by the farmer.

...... Food menu's were made for home and then also some for wheat harvest time.  Grocery store trips and planning was done.

..... Irrigation pipe was laid out by the farmers.  Then checked on twice daily at least!



..... Oil was drained and replaced in all three trucks in preparing for wheat harvest.

..... First Tball games were attended by parents and little girls played!

..... Father's day was spent with family.  Fishing, hiking, and then bbq at the house.  Good food, good times, good family!


















..... Irrigation center pivots were repaired, three generations involved and an in law too!

 ..... Mule and 4 wheeler rides were completed by Daddy's and little girls!

..... Strawberry Jam was made in the Entertaining Kitchen!

The new week has started since Sunday has arrived.  We are blessed and feel this new week will bring us many joys.  Wheat harvest is right around the corner, so time to rest for that is a very busy time for about 10 days straight!

May you have a blessed week!

Julie & Milton






Father's Day Post

I didn't plan to do a Father's day post, usually if you follow blogs on holidays like this they are packed with them.  But I decided I would join in.  I wanted to do alittle dedication to several "fathers" I have known.  So here goes.


My Dad.

We are similar in many of aspects, I feel proud of that fact. 
There hasn't been alot of time together in our lifetime, but he loves me there is no doubt about it. I cherish  what I have received. 
 He chose to help create me and that is reason enough to be thankful. 
And..... he gives THE BEST hugs ever. 
 He never lets go first, I just wish they were more often!
This picture was taken in 2009. He was taking treatment for Cancer.
I think the man has more than 9 lives!



My StepDad.
Bob has since passed from this life.  He brought me security when I didn't think it was available.  He brought my mother much happiness and that makes me happy.  He was quiet and loved his dog Pepper dearly.  I'm thankful for his love for my mother and the opportunities he provided for our family when I was home and thereafter.



Before I list anymore "fathers" in my life, I wanted to give a shout out to my two older kid's father.  I didn't place a picture of him, instead I'm sharing one of our beauties! I just wanted to say thanks. Thanks for choosing to be a Dad so young, for loving our girls the best you could, and for having the respect and courage to co-parent with me even after our divorce. We always put the girls first, and that is what mattered, no matter how difficult that may have been for each of us. I am thankful for that we did it together!


My Brother.
This is one of my favorite pictures of him.  He's my big brother.  I love the guy, even though the guy had me traded for a horse when he realized I was a girl (note I have two sisters!), so I kinda understand!  
He has always been good at discipline as a father.  
I think that takes courage.



My Husband.
I could go on and on and about how great a Dad he is. But I won't do that.  
Instead I will point out a few great details.  
Milton is a fine example of human existence for his daughter.  
He teaches her things and gets down and plays with her.
Milton is an EXCELLENT example for men in life for her! 
 I'm glad I have him to co-parent not only PV but our other two daughters as well. 
 He is a good man with Christian values.  
I am thankful for this.



My Father - GOD.
I don't have a photo of this one, but he is truly the most important one.  He created me and chose to give me life. He chose to place me where I am today and shelters me even when I didn't know he existed.  My life would not be complete without this Father.


Happy Father's Day to all the fathers, step in dads, friends, 
and mentors that have aided in this area of life.
God bless you all!

Thanks for stopping by!
Julie

Saturday, June 15, 2013

Evening Views & Irrigation Repair

Some evenings are spent around the dinner table together, some are spent playing in the yard, some are spent watching tball games for our family, some are spent doing farmwork,  or reading a book while little ones swim.  
This last one is how PV and I spent one evening until Milton got home. 
He was finishing up planting milo until about 7:00pm.

It's amazing to me that a tired looking, dirty, and somewhat worn man can be walking across our yard and as soon as he hears his little girl yell  "Daddy", his face lights up. 

Makes my heart warm, how about yours?

I didn't have a picture of Milton's face, so I'm sharing hers from this evening! :)

This evening Milton's brother stopped to visit, 
we ate sandwiches on our back deck,
 and then headed to check on the chickens and see Grandma. 

The ladies are doing well and they really enjoy 
when PV pulls the grass and feeds it to them.

It wasn't long and RV came searching for Milton for assistance, 
we had irrigation issues!
PV & I decided to tag along to assist in the situation!
The irrigation center pivot had some wiring 
 come loose in one of the electrical boxes. 

 

PV jumped out of the mule to "measure the wheat heads."  
I laughed thinking to myself, you don't hear little kids say that on a daily basis. 


She was anxious to tell her Dad, but I told her to wait until he was done.   
He was up high as you can tell, we didn't want his 
attention anywhere but where it needed to be!


She did eventually get to show him.


Then she was off to check the corn for bugs.  
Grandpa decided to take a gander too!



It's not often I get a view from the backside of our home.
It basically sits in a field!
I'm glad I went along for the ride tonight!


Sometimes living on a farm, one of the best things are the views.
Of course here at our blog, we truly love and appreciate the sunsets.
Sometimes, they just stop you in  your tracks.



Thanks for stopping by!
Julie