Our First Baby!

Monday, January 21, 2013

We have a morning routine where Eldon gets up and goes out to check the cows and I have about 30 minutes to just lay in bed and slowly wake up.... this morning Eldon loudly came in the camper door and said, "We have a new baby that was just born".  I tore out of that bed so fast, threw on some clothes, grabbed my camera and we were out the door.
 We ran to the woods and got there just as the new little precious baby was making her way up for the first time!  Her Momma gave her a little nudge and her back legs came up.  She paused a few minutes and then... 
... she wobbled up on her front legs! 
She got a sweet lick and reassuring soft "moo" from her Momma.   And I started crying.  I just stood there taking in the miracle of life and the wonderful nurturing of this sweet old Momma cow. 

We left them alone and came back to the camper and called our daughter to let her know to bring up the girls!  When they got here about 30 minutes later and we all walked back out to the woods, she was already nursing.   Her little tail was just wagging away!
Standing close to her Momma's side. 
Such darling little sleepy eyes taking in the new world around her. 
We didn't want to leave.  I wanted to bundle her up and bring her inside where we could all sit and snuggle her!  But her eyes were drooping and she was starting look a little weary. 
So all six of us (our son-in-law is off today with it being a holiday) piled into the camper and had some hot chocolate and talked about the first baby calf born on our farm.  And the name.... hmmmm.  We all threw out some ideas and settled on....  Holiday! 
And, on a side note here.  Our son-in-law, Justus, helped Eldon on Saturday with the final bit of hanging sheetrock that required being on the third level of the scaffolding!
So, as of Saturday afternoon - THE SHEET ROCK IS ALL HUNG!
We will be hiring someone to tape and mud - we think we'll take just a little mini break while that is being done! 
Hope you are having a wonderful start to the week.  I think that seeing a new little calf into the world was the best start of the week for me!  (Oh, and not having go out to the cold house to hang sheet rock!)

Cabin Fever

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

This is what we've been looking at for the last four days... rain, rain, and more rain! 
Its been a really good week to work on hanging sheet rock, because we certainly didn't want to be outside.  This is my craft room.  It took us HOURS to put the sheet rock in those wonderful built-ins. 
 The good news is that all the sheet rock has been hung.... except for this massive wall in the living room, which requires scaffolding, which requires a trip to the rental place, which requires getting our truck and trailer off this muddy hilltop! 

 Today I decided that it was time to get off the hilltop - even if the only way I could do it was in our four wheel drive Ranger!   I put on my muck boots, rain gear and a coat on the wet seat (smile) and away I went. 
The first order of business was to visit the cows.  This is #173 (she needs a real name).  She should be having her baby any day now.  It looks to me like she's "dropped"...  her tummy is not sticking straight out anymore and I can see her hip bones again. 
This is one of our little steers.  He still thinks he's a bull - has the face full of mischief all the time!
This is Old Red.  She's our oldest Momma Cow.  When you call "Sooook", she's the first one to come running!   
This silly ole Momma Cow is the one that escaped the pasture to the highway a couple weeks ago.   She looks innocent - but don't let her fool you!
I love the woods in the winter time.  They thin out to where you can actually get in and hike around.  These trees stand out in the dead woods with all their shimmery gold leaves that never fall off. 
I have a sweet friend in her eighties and last Fall she and I dug up about 100 daffodil bulbs out of her yard which I diligently planted alongside our road.  I could envision them in the spring blooming as we drove through the woods.  Well....  with the warm weather last week they got a little confused and started to bloom; now with the freezing weather this week they are all dying and falling over.  I'm afraid the picture of 100 blooming daffodils is not going to occur. 
This is my very blurry (rainy) self portrait, but Belle and I had a very good time traipsing around the farm, in the woods, and checking all the animals.  It was the perfect cure for Cabin Fever.
Hope you've been having a wonderful week!

The House On the Hilltop - Part Seven

Thursday, January 3, 2013


Well....  the job of hanging sheet rock has begun!  We figured up an estimate of sheet rock needed, ordered it and had it delivered.  This is just one stack in the house! 
The first place we started were the ceilings.  We have this handy hoist thing that works like a champ.  You set your measured, cut and marked sheet rock piece on the top, roll it up to the ceiling and lock it in place.  It holds it while you screw in the screws! 
See how easy that is?  (smile!) Notice the cut holes for the light fixtures and smoke alarm?  That is my job.  Measuring where they are and cutting the exact size in the exact location.  It should be pretty simple and straight forward....  but, well not exactly.  We ruined a couple sheets because I made some pretty big mistakes at first! 
These are my tools that hang out in my pocket all day long!  I also have a really nifty T-square that doesn't fit in my pocket and I'm constantly looking for it! 
There's my T-square!  Sheet rock is really interesting stuff to work with actually.  It is super easy to cut; you measure your mark, score it with an exacto blade, snap it off and cut the paper in the back.  Its kind of fun.  (It won't be my permanent day job though!)   
This is what makes working in the house in the middle of freezing cold winter bearable!  It works amazingly well! 
Measuring and cutting the outlet boxes is my other job!  It requires quite a bit of measuring and double-checking before I cut. 
While I'm doing the measuring and cutting, Eldon is hanging the previous piece.  I try to stay one stop ahead of him but usually he's waiting on me!
He's got this great gun that has the sheet rock screws on a plastic strip that feeds through as he goes.  Makes is pretty slick for installing. 
The only problem is that it doesn't always feed the screws smoothly.  And its heavy. 
And there's Belle.  That's where she hangs out to watch!  Ocassionally we throw her frisbee to the upstairs room and she bounds up the stairs and back down faster than you can blink! 

And this is the other place she hangs out.... with her cows and her horse!

We are working slow and steady and making it around the house.  I don't think we'll ever say that hanging sheet rock is easy, but it is certainly a great job for seeing results fast!  I'm starting to dream of paint colors now!  But then Eldon reminds me there is a lot of sheet rock still to be hung!  (AND taped AND textured!)