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Showing posts from March, 2009

Guy Reads

Special to MP: Don't read this one during lunch.

Guy (that's my nickname for my husband) has been VERY busy following his many NCAA brackets, but this week's paper had several interesting items I wanted him to see. So it's time for another installment of Guy Reads, the exciting segment where I share with you the news items I clip out of the paper for my husband.

Two timely items hit the papers this week. First, an article about the Oakdale Testicle Festival. Say that five times. According to the article, this California Rotary group made $28,000 at their annual meal and event--which they promised that all who attend will have a ball. I didn't know it when I was sharing this news with Guy, but tomorrow just happens to be the day when we begin harvesting our annual testicle crop.

Note: If you have to ask where and how a pig farmer can get a bucket full of testicles--then you really don't want to know. The important thing is I could be sitting on a gold mine here! Ma…

What I Did on My Wednesday Vacation

Today I took a day off work. I was the kind of vacation day only a working mother could take.

The day started with kindergarten registration. I knew it was only paperwork but I thought it would somehow be wonderful bonding paperwork if I brought my two pre-schoolers along with me. I should have my degree in advanced motherhood revoked for that blunder.

Justin and Morgan colored cutely for two seconds and then spent the rest of the time either scribbling on the table (a great impression for their future teachers) or fighting about the crayons. In their defense, I didn't have to complete this much paperwork to have my gall bladder removed. They took an organ out of my body and I had to write my name fewer times than to sign my five-year-old up for public school. In the stack of papers I had to complete there were SEVEN places to write our address and TEN places to write our phone number--I counted.

Then it was back across the parking lot and into the car--did I mention it was raining t…

Do You Have an Hour to Laugh Your Head Off?

Oh, Jen from Cake Wrecks, you give all of us hope. Without frill of Web design or fanciness of URL you have managed to keep us ROTFL while beating the big girls at the Bloggies.

Thank you for an evening of entertainment. Thank you for Naked Mohawk-Baby Carrot Jockeys.

Agri-Tourism

Sometimes farm life becomes all about the downside. The spouse who works 365 days a year (no, Santa doesn't feed the sows on his way through), the semi-tanker milk truck that rumbles under my bedroom window in the middle of the night, the non-air conditioned farm house, the dust--good God, the dust.

But when people learn we live on a farm, they are always fascinated and often ask if they can bring their kids to visit. And we are happy to oblige. Walking around with other Moms who just hope that their kids can retain some knowledge about where food actually comes from and/or the family's long-gone agricultural roots, I realize how great I have it.

Today we hosted some very cute kids whose parents (and grandparents, aunts and uncles) we knew when we were kids. They live in our largely rural community but still were not familiar with raising pigs or milking cows. Morgan helped her new friend look for a crawdad.

There's nothing like seeing a child realize that the farm mommies a…

All About Pigs

Following on his hit essay I ama pig farmr, our son has penned the book on the swine industry.
I bring you: "All About Pigs."

Pigs that are white are Yorkshires.

Pigs that are Hampshires are black. There is a kind of feed that is special.

Some kinds of feeds have vitamins in it. Some kinds of feeds are good.

You have to put your pig in a pen. They might get out. You have to get them in.

You make sure that they are in.

Wearin' O'The Green

Five years ago today, I had the audacity to squirt out my second child before my in-laws even got out of their driveway to come to the hospital.

The second child gets the hand-me-down clothes and the unfinished baby book and he seemed to sense that even as an infant. Much to the dismay of his grandmothers, he would only let me and his babysitter hold him. Even Husband didn't get the chance to do much with him, which was OK since he quickly figured out that the ready-made potty-trained son was much easier than the one who needed breastfeeding and diaper changing.Justin never fails to surprise and delight us with his imagination. Today we enjoyed some of the nicest St. Patrick's Day weather in the last five years and Justin took advantage of the warm evening to stage this parade of scooter and cobbled together snow sleds.

Oh, and the yellow rubber boots. Don't forget the yellow rubber boots. In case there's farming to do.

St. Patrick's Day will forever be a special oc…

I ama pig farmr.

There is no better moment as a parent than when you look over the little head of your offspring to make eye contact with your spouse, both bursting with pride and stifled laughter. We do this often with Ryan like when he visits every pig pen in the entire State Fair to pick out a gilt to buy, or when he notices that the Hampshire sow we bought in Iowa is now in a different barn on the farm, or when he takes little scraps of paper outside to grade this winter's litters.

Today, Ryan came home with a paper he did at school. Heaven only knows what his Friendly Suburban-Dwelling Teacher thought when she saw this:

In case you can't read 1st grade-ese, I'll translate:
What is special about me: I am a pig farmer.
What makes me happy: pigs.
Animals I like: pigs
What I like to do: Go to pig shows.

This fall he had to do a poster about himself where he cut out various things to represent what he liked to eat and play, etc. I had to LIMIT him to two pigs per box. He just couldn't un…

Happy Blogiversary

One year ago today, at the urging of a friend, I decided that other people would like a behind-the-scenes look at farm life from the perspective of a person who spends her days in corporate America and her evenings saying things to her spouse and children like Don't store your s&men collection supplies on the kitchen counter--put them on top of the washer.

I really have to dedicate this blogiversary post to the person who has been my inspiration, my blogging muse: my husband. A never-ending source of humor and unique situations, Husband never fails to shake his head when he reads this blog. And that is only when I leave it up on the screen for him. He and his faithful AOL browser don't know how to get here on their own.



But in spite of all the mild ribbing he takes here, he still remembered my blogiversary and commissioned this cake. (HA!)

I also have to thank our parents for raising us in such bizarre families and providing me with much interesting fodder, like appliances an…

Let's Go Fly a Kite

Last year at this time we were recovering from a blizzard. Today, the temp was 70, so the kids and I were able to turn the hay field into our own kite flying range.


Morgan and Justin had never flown kites before but they were quick learners. Morgan even assembled a very special farm girl kite flying outfit.

We had to be careful of all the usual kite-eating trees and power lines, but on the farm there are additional hazards. Corn stalks are not good for kites; neither are cows but the one on the far right was behind a fence.

Kitty, Kitty are you OK? Get up Kitty, you can do it! Morgan and I found it helpful to shout words of encouragement to her kite.

Once she got the hang of it, she had a blast.

PR Idea of the Week

This week I just couldn't look away from the PR-wreck in process with a local school district. It's almost comical how predictable the story is. It goes like this:

Local school district writes well-intentioned code of conduct with "zero tolerance" type policies.Cute first grader brings in a plastic knife to cut her cupcake, or 6th grade punk gives cough drop to his girlfriend, or kindergartner kisses a classmate, or wrestler steals (or forgets to pay for) $1.30 worth of cookiesGutless principal is very sorry but he MUST apply all the rules to EVERYONE THE SAME and also the punishmentAstounded parents, accompanied by their lawyer, go to the court of public opinion (and real court) via the mediaSchool board and other school officials hide behind policy of not discussing student disciplinary issuesMinor situation that could have been handled by a detention becomes national news storyRepeat steps 4 and 5 until community is completely divided and/or media move on to somet…