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December 28, 2010

Computer and Back problems

Just wanted to let everyone know.  I had to stay off the computer for awhile as I have a slipped disc and setting here was very painful. Last night was my frist night to finally get some rest and am feeling better.  Yesterday my backlight on my computer screen went.  God must really want me to stay off this computer for awhile.  So until I get it fixed I have to hold a trouble light up to it to barely see the screen.  So all of this has limited my ability to blog and visit anyone..    But it has been interesting just laying around and letting my mind wonder without pressure of getting things done.   Something I haven’t experience for quite a few years now.  Life without staring into the computer for hours isn’t such a bad thing.  Anyway my friends hope you all enjoyed a wonderful Christmas and if my computer isn’t fixed by New Years I am wishing you a Happy New Year.

Hugs Carrie

December 21, 2010

A Christmas Story

With this Christmas story I share with you some my ornaments and Christmas decorations at my home.  The story I received from by E-mail.  Ok don't laugh at my nativity scene... I made that myself years ago.  There are antique bottles under all the characters.
 A Christmas Story 
September 1960, I woke up one morning with six hungry babies and just 75 cents in my pocket.  Their father was gone.
The boys ranged from three months to seven years; their sister was two.
Their Dad had never been much more than a presence they feared.  Whenever they heard his tires crunch on the gravel driveway they
would scramble to hide under their beds.  He did manage to leave $15 a week to buy groceries.
PC130002 (2) Now that he had decided to leave, there would be no more beatings, but no food either.  If there was a welfare system in effect in southern Indiana at that time, I certainly knew nothing about it. PC120009 I scrubbed the kids until they looked brand new and then put on my best homemade dress, loaded them into the rusty old 51 Chevy and drove off to find a job. The seven of us went to every factory, store and restaurant in our small town..
No luck. 

The kids stayed crammed into the car and tried to be quiet while I tried to convince who ever would listen that I was willing to learn or do anything. I had to have a job.  Still no luck. The last place we went to, just a few miles out of town, was an old Root Beer Barrel drive-in that had been converted to a truck stop..  It was called the Big Wheel.
PC120027 An old lady named Granny owned the place and she peeked out of the window from time to time at all those kids.  She needed someone on the graveyard shift, 11 at night until seven in the morning.
She paid 65 cents an hour, and I could start that night.

I raced home and called the teenager down the street that baby-sat for people.  I bargained with her to come and sleep on my sofa for a dollar a night.  She could arrive with her pyjamas on and the kids would already be asleep.  This seemed like a good arrangement to her, so we made a deal.
PC120018 That night when the little ones and I knelt to say our prayers, we all thanked God for finding Mommy a job. And so I started at the Big Wheel.  When I got home in the mornings I woke the baby-sitter up and sent her home with one dollar of my tip money-- fully half of what I averaged every night.
As the weeks went by, heating bills added a strain to my meager wage.  The tires on the old Chevy had the consistency of penny balloons and began to leak.  I had to fill them with air on the way to work and again every morning before I could go home.

One bleak fall morning, I dragged myself to the car to go home and
found four tires in the back seat. New tires!
There was no note, no nothing, just those beautiful brand new tires. 
Had angels taken up residence in Indiana?   I wondered.
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I made a deal with the local service station.  In exchange for his mounting the new tires, I would clean up his office.  I remember it took me a lot longer to scrub his floor than it did for him to do the tires.  I was now working six nights instead of five and it still wasn't enough.  Christmas was coming and I knew there would be no money for toys for the kids.
I found a can of red paint and started repairing and painting some old toys. Then I hid them in the basement so there would be something for Santa to deliver on Christmas morning.  Clothes were a worry too. I was sewing patches on top of patches on the boys pants and soon they would be too far gone to repair.
On Christmas Eve the usual customers were drinking coffee in the Big Wheel. There were the truckers, Les, Frank, and Jim, and a state trooper named Joe.
A few musicians were hanging around after a gig at the Legion and were dropping nickels in the pinball machine.
The regulars all just sat around and talked through the wee hours of the morning and then left to get home before the sun came up.
When it was time for me to go home at seven o'clock on Christmas morning, to my amazement, my old battered Chevy was filled full to the top with boxes of all shapes and sizes.
I quickly opened the driver's side door, crawled inside and kneeled in the front facing the back seat.  Reaching back, I pulled off the lid of the top box.
Inside was whole case of little blue jeans, sizes 2-10!
I looked inside another box: It was full of shirts to go with the jeans.

Then I peeked inside some of the other boxes. There was candy and nuts and bananas and bags of groceries. There was an enormous ham for baking, and canned vegetables and potatoes.  There was pudding and Jell-O and cookies, pie filling and flour. There was whole bag of laundry supplies and cleaning items.
 PC050005 And there were five toy trucks and one beautiful little doll.
As I drove back through empty streets as the sun slowly rose on the most amazing Christmas Day of my life, I was sobbing with gratitude. 
And I will never forget the joy on the faces of my little ones that precious morning.

Yes, there were angels in Indiana that long-ago December.  And they all hung out at the Big Wheel truck stop.
 The End
So let the warm glow of ways of Christ illuminate thru out the year......
Wishing everyone a safe and warm Christmas and remember to keep our Creator in your heart always
and have a
Good Morning…   Good Afternoon…  Good Night…
Whatever it is to you.
Photos by
Here I Am/Carrie

December 12, 2010

The Joy of Christmas to Come

Well we are finally starting to feel a bit more like winter.   Our area is now covered with a white beautiful blanket of snow with more falling each day. 

My last post was about dealing with a cow and calf.  Well we were finally able to move the mother cow down the road to join up with the rest of the herd after almost of week of her wanting to stay looking for her now dead calf.  I had to go into the willows and get her out onto the road where hubby walked her almost 2 miles down the road to the next ranch.  The herd has since been moved back up to their home ranch.  No more cows roaming the valley.

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So peace has returned to my quiet valley.

Photo by Here I Am/Carrie         Photo by Here I Am/Carrie

Photo by Here I Am/Carrie

Photo by Here I Am/Carrie

Enjoying walks again around our property and picking our new Christmas tree.

Photo by Here I Am/Carrie        Photo by Here I Am/Carrie

Photo by Here I Am/Carrie

Hubby smoking his salmon.

Photo by Here I Am/Carrie         Photo by Here I Am/Carrie

The snow is still falling off and on everyday changing the landscape with each new coating.

Photo by Here I Am/Carrie 

Between snows we are getting lots of exercise shovelling snow paths to all our out building and wood piles. 

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The yard art takes on new winter appearances.

Photo by Here I Am/Carrie

 Photo by Here I Am/Carrie

Of course the approach of Christmas has added more excitement and sparkle to our place.  The Christmas music is playing non-stop.   I will be hosting my annual Christmas party I have here just before Christmas.  So I have lots of preparations to make with more baking and getting food ready.  I am beginning to feel the joy again of the season.  How could one not with this peaceful scene lay-out before you.  Ever changing are my views.

Photo by Here I Am/Carrie

Photo by Here I Am/Carrie

I hope all my friends and family are finding joy in this Christmas season and a chance to share with someone who is in need.

Wishing Everyone a Blessed Christmas
and a
Good Morning…  Good Afternoon…  Good Night…
What ever it is to you.

Photos & Words
Here I Am/Carrie

Photo by Here I Am/Carrie


November 25, 2010

Bad Week at the Ranch

The peace and quiet at our ranch has been shattered by the bellowing of a momma cow who just lost her calf.  About 4 days ago word got to me that a cow with a very young calf was making their way down the road from their summer grazing place.  None of these are our cows. All the other cows had already gone past almost a week ago just when the snow started falling and getting really cold. 

This cow was way behind because the calf was possibly injured and she would have had to go slow.  In going slow she and the calf got caught in the extreme colds of –25c.  The morning we were going to check to see if we could see her we noticed a road crew employee who keeps our road clear of snow stopped in front of our house.   He was dropping some hay off and the cow and calf were right there.  Later I was going to go and move them further down the road.

My next neighbour has cows and could keep her and her calf with her cows.  We don’t like to feed them here as then they don’t move on to where they will get their hay for the winter.

I had looked out across from my house and could now see the cow walking up and down the road but not the calf.  I could then see a dark spot down an embankment and freaked now knowing the calf must have fallen down it.  I took this photo later to show across the our field where the road is.  Right in the center where those trees are is where he went down.  Now I have no photos showing him till after he was recued as I was in panic work mode to save the calf and not thinking of photos at the time.  

Drama at the Ranch by Here I Am/Carrie

It was down this steep bank he had fallen.  I suspect he was trying to get down to the creek for water.  Which was mostly frozen and had he reached it would have fallen thru the ice.  He ended up on his back with his legs up the hill. 

Drama at the Ranch by Here I Am/Carrie

With ropes Hubby and I pulled the calf up from the bottom thru these 2 trees.  I was able to use one to wrap the rope around.   One slip or struggle from the calf, Hubby and the calf could have fallen back onto the ice in the creek.  When we got the calf up he was too week to walk so we struggled to get him into the back of our Rav car. 

Drama at the Ranch by Here I Am/Carrie

We left him in the Rav for a couple hours with a heater going.  He seemed to be doing better.

Drama at the Ranch by Here I Am/Carrie

We had put the cow in our field with some calves we kept for a friend over the summer and hadn’t been picked up yet.  Unfortunately the calf was still to weak to be out and way too cold so we put him in our chicken coop.   We couldn’t keep him in our car and there is no power in the barn.  

Drama at the Ranch by Here I Am/Carrie

A few hours later the owners arrived and took the calf home or so I thought, but found out later they took him to another friends house and dumped him there for her to care for the calf. These are suppose to be ranchers who can’t even care for their own animals.   As we still had Momma cow we kept her over night in our field and fed her lots of hay.  But the bellowing started about 2am as she was feeling better and wanted her calf back. 

I got a message  next day thru the grapevine of messages that the owner said to push the momma cow back out on the road as the calf had died.  It was possibly from a twisted gut from him being on his back when he fell.  Also just way too cold and possible prior injury.  So for 2 days we have had to listen to her go up and down the road looking for her calf.  It’s a very hard thing to take as we can’t give her hay now as she will never leave here.  We have been in this position many times over the years and seems the circumstances just never change.  Some people just don’t put in the effort in the care of their animals and think they will just take care of themselves.  Complaints have been made many times over the years and nothing changes.  The world of ranching and free ranch cows is often very harsh.

She has finally quit bellowing and I hope she moves on down the road soon.  Just a couple kilometers there is a whole herd she can join up with.  I have tried to walk her down the road but she turns off in some willows every time and I can’t get her out.  All of this is taking place in very cold temps when I would like nothing more then to have been snug in my house.

As my only form of communication is e-mail I have been doing that quite a bit the last few days trying to stay in communication with what everyone involved is saying or wants done.

Meanwhile along with all this and some gruelling cold temps, we had a few vehicle problems. 

First our little Datsun truck hubby uses around the ranch got a flat tire.  Then our big old truck we using for ploughing our driveway decided to blow the heater just when hubby started it up.  Which can be such a comfort when ploughing in these temps. 

PB250001        PB250002

What should have been a quiet week enjoying the snow falling turned into what I sometimes just can’t take here and want to move.  It’s hard not to get involved when stuff happens right here on our property or on the road right in front of us.

I have also been keeping busy hand shovelling all my paths to different buildings.  I have gotten so much exercise this week and spent more time outside then I have for almost a month.  But that is what I love about winter here.  There is always something to keep you moving and busy.  Well a little to busy this week.  Meanwhile its very cold looking outside.

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But I am back again inside snug and staying warm with our big stove going full time heating our house and water.


Speaking of hot water I think I will go take a hot bath now as I have 2 tanks full of hot water. Darn it’s almost dark and hubby is in town so one more trip down the hill to feed the calves in our field.   

Wishing everyone a warm and snug place and being thankful for all that we have. 

Also wishing those celebrating Thanksgiving a safe holiday.

And everyone else a
Good Morning…   Good Afternoon…  Good Night…
What ever it is to you…

Photos and Words
Here I Am/Carrie