Wednesday, August 31

The Smeller AND The Feller

You know what gets me?
I mean, really puzzles me?

How dry it is here while northeast of us there are massive floods.
Crazy.
This lack of a weather pattern is ridiculous.
But that's all I have to say about that.

Look at the soybeans!


They are dry too...
So sad.

But the dry beans are not what I wanted to share with you today.
Lucky you.

Since I have been in a 'feeding frenzy' all week I have had extra time to think...
Thus I have made a few personal discoveries the first one being....

I am the smeller AND the feller

First the good news...

I gotta tell you I have a rockin' sense of smell.
Shut.The.Front.Door.
I do.

I can tell who has been in my office as well as about how long ago they were there.
Obviously the fact that I work on a farm doesn't hamper the accuracy of my shnozzzzzzz.

I can also tell when my BF gets to Church...she took it the wrong way too.
One Sunday Chuck and I were sitting in the back our normal spot and we were wondering if our friends would make it to early service that day.
Low and behold ten minutes later I caught the scent of spearmint or peppermint..something mint.
I knew she was there. She always smells minty and good!
This is a GOOD thing!!

Anyway, after service we stood up to leave and I told her I didn't need to look to know they were there...
I smelled them when they walked in...

That was two months ago and I think she likes me again now.
But I'm telling you mint is a GOOD smell!!

...The bad news...

The other day at the gym one of my friends told me some super, great, wonderful, amazing news! But I couldn't tell anyone..this happens a lot.

Anyway, I had just walked in when he told me, and I congratulated him and gave him a big old hug!!

Twenty minutes later I was on the treadmill when a waft of farm-fresh cow-smellin' air tickled my nose...
Hmmmmm....that smells....familiar??
3 minutes pass then it hits me...
It's ME! OhMyGosh! I smell ME! Ugh....wait! I gave him a hug....awww man.
I looked but he had already left. 
I was ready to apologize and say something like..."Uh, I hit a cow on my way here...".
No such luck.

I would like to take this moment to formally apologize for my work-cow-smell and the way it wafts through the gym....

But I will still be there tomorrow.
I pay my dues just like you do.

So while I have been blessed with an out of this world smell-er, I am often the smell-y..
Wait...that came out wrong..




Tuesday, August 30

Climbing That Mountain

I haven't posted in a couple of days because I am deliriously tired.

How do I know when I'm tired?
When I have woken up three days in a row with the same thought:
 I think I'll take a nap instead of working out today.

I haven't, and I won't, but for some reason nap time is my first thought.

It's a mountain and the top will be reached on Saturday when Eddie gets back from vacation.
Or when I give up and move to Mexico.
I can habla...a little.

Besides if I moved to Mexico I would do what my workers do here.
They refuse to learn English and demand that YOU learn Spanish.
Pfffffffttttttt!
So not happening.

Until then I will just continue to get weirder.
I took this picture a couple of days ago of one of the new kittens climbing my leg...




She was pretty determined to get to my knee but didn't quite make it.
The little lady only does this when I am washing buckets at the calf barn because I am stuck standing in one spot.

Maybe it's exhaustion, or sheer curiosity, but I let her do it.
She made it up to my back pocket this morning and was just hanging out watching me wash up.

Then she threw her head back and screamed "belay OFF!" and jumped down.
(Delirious: When you remember climbing terms such as "belay" from your middle school climbing experience.)
I couldn't remember the word "sand" last night when helping Caden with his science homework, but I remember "belay".

The kitten cuteness will probably wear off when her claws get longer.

I have an important question having nothing to do with rock climbing or cats:

When you did your wedding registry was there anything that you were "so glad" you put on your list?
Anything you couldn't live without?
I mean, besides a tortilla press...I already put that on there.

I am embarking on the registry thing and I feel like there is something I'm not thinking of....

OH and another thing...
I thought I had the best recipe for chocolate chip cookies EVER but then I made the King Arthur Flour recipe(http://www.kingarthurflour.com/) the "KAF guaranteed chocolate chip cookies" last night and....
NOW I have the best recipe ever.

You should try it when you get home, or now...

"Belay ON!!!"....


Saturday, August 27

When Life Gives You Eggs...Make Quiche?

I was going to write a new post this morning.
I had every intention of engaging you in some sort of cute, witty tale of cows, cats or corn.
Because we all know those are what I bring to the table.

But no such luck.
You can thank whoever egged my truck.
Yes. I walked out the door in the neighborhood of 5 a.m and went to get in my truck, and noticed that the drivers side door had been egged.

Who does that?

Someone who doesn't like chickens?
Then don't buy eggs!
Were they bad eggs?
You obviously shouldn't buy eggs if you won't use them!

Maybe they think I'm a chicken farmer..
Surely not.

Anyway, for some reason my poor Tacoma was targeted among the sea of other cars both foreign and domestic...
Had to throw that in so you know it wasn't a hate crime.

I told Chuck that I couldn't have made anyone mad..
I mean, I don't live in the real world. I just sleep there.
I live in the land of milk and babies...remember?

I can prove it.
Here is my little lady born yesterday morning..




She appears lost.
She thought she was until I walked out there and put my arms around her to pick her up..
then she jumped which caused her backbone to briefly clothesline me.

It was touch-n-go there for a minute.
I just knew my engagement ring had been wedged into my jugular.
But it wasn't.
No need to panic.




There she is lookin' all knock-kneed.

Maybe I'll get my writing mojo back in the morning.
We can only hope.
'Til then if you need me I will be feeding..something.

Here is a rough breakdown of my shhhhedule for the next FOREVER..or until Eddie finds his way back:
-Wake up
-Feed myself
-Feed my babies
-Feed milking cows
-Feed cats and 'coons
-Treat cows
-Feed dry cows
-Feed myself
-Feed my babies
-Feed cats
-Feed milking cows
-Feed myself
-Sleep

Pretty straightforward.
If you're hungry come find me..especially if you like eggs;).

Friday, August 26

7:46 in the p.m.

I went to bed at 7:46 last night...er...yesterday evening.
I got up at 3:15, worked 14 hours, went home and made chicken cutlets, mashed potatoes, and green beans, then went to bed at 7:45 and undoubtedly was asleep at 7:46.

I had to make the chicken.
It was all I could think about.
Those chicken breasts are still in the fridge, if I don't cook them they will go bad!  But I'm so tired. But they will go BAD!

So I gave in because I hate throwing food away and decided that since I could feel my pulse in my feet, why not make mashed potatoes and green beans?
I mean, why not?

7:45 rolled around and my hair was giving me a headache so off to bed I went and crashed.

I didn't have any new baby calves yesterday but I did have three new additions to my feed room crew...



When I test cows I have about thsmch time to feed calves in between groups.
While I was mixing the milk and talking to the cats(erase that from your memory) I happened to look down at them and good gosh if three little ones didn't amble out among the others...




Well alright then.
So, being the hard-butt I am, I immediately fell in love and scratched their ears.
So. Cute.

They are sleeping behind the water heater in a nest of sorts, and originally I thought that their mom must really like me to bring her babies down to the feed room.
But then I saw the look...


And although I do not have kids of my own, I fully understand it.

Yes ma'am I will feed your babies too.

Off now to feed my milking cows!




Thursday, August 25

3:15 in the a.m.


3:15 a.m. is my least favorite a.m. there is.
It makes my normal 4:50 a.m. look like a superstar.

I have met it coming in before..after a long night back in the day.
Waking up to it will never be easy for me.

It makes me feel old, and sad, and.....like this.....



Like I have a big dog sitting on me.
Poor Kirra, she really is always the "underdog".

Anyway I was forced to make nice with 3:15 this morning so that I could get up and test cows.
Testing cows, for the few people who don't know, is when you weigh each cows milk individually and send a sample out.
This, although just one milking, gives the herdswoman an idea of how that cow and the rest of the herd are doing in their stage of lactation as well as how they are responding to their feed, climate, etc.

Back when I was much much younger, two years ago, I decided that instead of paying someone to do this for us, I would just get up early and do it!
What's the big deal?!
Right?!

Now that I am much much older I realize the importance of leaving well enough alone.
Just.Don't.Touch.It.

I could always change my mind I guess, unfortunately that would be like backing down from a challenge.
I'm far too stubborn to do that.
Plus what's a little sleep anyway?  Sanity. Loss of sanity.
But hey I only have 104 more to test this morning!

100 down, 104 to go.
I got this.

Oh and just a heads-up, Eddie starts vacation tomorrow and will be gone until next.Sunday.
This is important for you to remember in case during that time I seem a bit "off" or offend anyone.
I don't mean to...it's the sleep deprivation talking.
Chuck already noticed Happiness getting the "long trip" suitcase out of storage.

Tim and I will be splitting Eddies job as well as doing our own.
I will get the feeding, fueling, and random work.
Tim will get the hiding, and acting like he's working...work.

Wow, 3:15 cuts to the core.


Wednesday, August 24

They Do It On Purpose

Last Thursday through Sunday were very long, difficult days at work.
I was physically and emotionally spent.

I'm pretty hard on myself if I mess up or something goes wrong, because I know I'm better than that.
I work really hard because I would like to do this 'farm-thing' forever..and because I would go crazy if I didn't.

Lots of bad things happen that tug at my heart or make me second-guess myself, but then miraculously something always happens that takes my mind off the bad and occupies my thoughts.

Enter The Dry Cows.....


If these expectant mothers aren't stealing each others babies they are finding some other way to keep me on my toes.



I have two lots for them:
1. Close-up: Within 30 days of calving.
2. Far-off: > 30 of calving.
It's mind-boggling isn't it?

The names also coincide with the proximity of the fields to the dairy barn.

We try to keep things fairly easy 'round hur.

In a perfect(alien) world:
I would move the cows from the far-off lot to the close-ups about 2 weeks from calving to keep my eye on them.
Then one cool morning, the birds would sing and the butterflies would dance through the air as the mother's welcome their newborns into the world.
Beautiful, perfect little bundles of joy..

In my(typical) world:
Things would go like they went yesterday...

Due to the events and craziness of last week I had not been to check on my far-offs in a few days.
No biggie, seeing as I had already put the 2 closest-to-calving cows in the close-up lot.

After lunch I decided to walk back to the pond field, home to the far-offs, and take a looky-loo.
Something happens in the pond field...could be the water..but after about a week of being out there, a cow will forget that she is domesticated and what people look like.
This normally results in a wide-eyed look of shear terror and all you see are hooves flying in the opposite direction, when you happen upon one of these 'wild' animals

So yesterday I got alllllllll the way back to the pond and found two cows with two calves.
Super.
Oh, and these two cows were from my close-up lot.
Told you they're sneaky.

OK, no problem if the calves would walk....
But they wouldn't.

One of them did, however, kick me in the knee approximately 6 times in less than a minute.

Then I turned around and walked eight thousand miles back to the barn, got the front end loader, and drove back to the pond.

When I got there I put both calves in the bucket and used the tractor to drive the cows to the barn...
Just so you know when a cow sees a tractor TheyDon'tRun.
They do, however, want to smell and lick it.
Problem number 2.

Luckily I found a sorting stick on the tractor and used it to whack the fender, while I drove, in order to try and scare the cows enough to get them headed toward the barn.
It worked!

The next ten-twelve minutes were spent flying through the field on the tractor, with two calves in the bucket threatening to abandon ship, yelling "LET'S GOOOOOO" and whacking the fender with the stick.

So the procedure might not be textbook, but then again most of the situations I find myself in aren't either.



They do it on purpose.

Tuesday, August 23

Rough Hands...Warm Heart??

I can't find my gloves.
This is a problem.
This wouldn't have been a problem 2 years ago.
But it's a problem now.


See, two years ago I didn't really care what my hands looked like.
They were just...hands.
I had really just taken over the dairy and had much more to worry about than hands...pfffft!
I mean really, give me a break.
Calluses are OK..it keeps your skin tough..right?

During this time the Bossman and I were talking regularly and I would frequently eat lunch at the house.
On such an occasion, it was winter out, colder than..cold..and I was lookin' fantastic in my Under Armour skin-tight cold gear sitting at the table eating chili, when the Bossman shuffles toward me...

Oh no. What did I forget to do?

Now, he will always be the oldest man I know however he only shuffles at home, for some unknown reason.

He is headed straight.for.me.
Quick! Avert your eyes!
If you don't see him maybe he won't see you!

Next thing I know he is rightBehindMe.
He grabs my hand, holds it thisClose to his face and says:
"Sister, have you been putting lotion on your hands?"
Well good gosh.

"Uhhhh...yeah..I mean..uh..sometimes" I say confused.
"Well you need to wear gloves AND put lotion on. No one is going to want you with hands like that."
Then he walked off saying:
"Momma, where's that lotion I had?"
I'll be a monkeys uncle.

Does he really care about the texture of my hands?
Is he trying to marry me off in fear he will have to take care of me forever?
The lotion thing doesn't normally come up in conversation with Teddie(Tim and Eddie, the unit).
I could just see Tim, out in the field working on the combine...
"OK all finished. Now where did I put the Aveeno?"
Then Eddie would say:
"Beats me, last time I saw it was when you were trimming your cuticles. Look beside the grinder."

That just doesn't happen.

So I listened to dad...because I work for him.
Bought gloves..with my hard earned paycheck.
AND lotion, because, well because Malinda said it was the best and she will always be my first best friend ever.
And she's a doctor.

Do you know what happened?
My hands became quite nice.
Well, nice as in a farmer who wears gloves and lotion, nice.
Not hand model nice...
Or magician nice..

But...nice..

Now look at what happens after approximately 3 days without gloves...


A gate fell...


..and my cat-like reflexes were still taking lunch..

I know what you're thinking and the answer is "yes".
I know how ugly my man-hands are.
Let's try and keep the nasty comments down, shall we?

Oh, just so you know I  met Chuck before the hand lotion entered my life.
Some people can see beyond rough hands thankYouVeryMuch.

Now please excuse me while I go soak my hands in peroxide and try and remember where I left my gloves.


Monday, August 22

Like Two Ships...

It is because I realized that all I have to offer are pictures of either cows, cats or corn, and because these are my faithful followers, I decided to show you these here pictures....



Yes, that would be my foot as well.
They are waiting, ever so patiently, on their milk.




Creamy kitty doesn't understand why no one else is disgruntled.
She reminds me of a kid lost in the mall who just sits down and cries.

You should see them after the feeding frenzy...
All stretched out on their side, big bellies full of milk...oh to be a cat.

To be a cat and only have to think about eating, bathing and sleeping in the "hammit".
A "hammit" for those of you who do not know, is what Tim calls a hammock.
It took me forever to figure that one out.

The cats had it easy this weekend, I however did not.
I called the vet at least once every day since Thursday.
Thursday I called like 7 times.
I even called UT and was quite put-off when the vet on-call was trying to give me directions..
Dr. KnowItAll: "Ummmm....do you know where UT is?"
Me: "Yes...I went there..."
Dr. KnowItAllWhoDoesNotListen: "OK then...do you know where the play football in Knoxville?"
Wait...is that like where they throw the ball or hit it with a stick?

I stuck with my vet after that.
Needless to say the past 4 days have been loooooong.
Why don't people listen?
Better yet, why don't they think for a hot minute before they speak?

I had a guy pull in at the commodity shed while I was feeding late Friday afternoon.
I was on the loader hauling tail in a cloud of hominy when a shiny SUV appeared behind me.

Woooaaaaahhhh nelly!
We are all lucky I happened to look before backing up.

I need to start doing field work, that way I can disappear on the tractor for hours on end.
I am entirely too visible to not be a people person.

Anyway, I cut the throttle and gave them the "and what can I do for you today" look.
Guy driving: "Did you know you have cOWs out?" (He really stressed that "OW" part.)
Now, let's think about this question....

-If I knew I had "cOWs" out, do you think I would be here doing this?
No, I would either be there or send someone there to deal with that.

I understand he had the best intentions.
And I could have responded with a number of things:
-"COWS? We have COWS?"
-"They are free-range."
-"I put them there."
-"They aren't cows, they are heifers.  Not every bovine is a cow."
-"Let's go get them in, you lead the way!"

Boy that last one would be priceless!

Maybe I'm different.
OK, I'm different.
But I think, way too much, about things before I say them or write them.
It's nothing for me to take 3 days to respond to an email because I am thinking about how I will respond.
I'm not worried about it, I just like to say what I mean.
I think about every aspect, then make an informed decision.
Weird-O.

A while back the Heat made the comment that my dad(Bossman) and I pass each other "like two ships in the night"...
That very accurately describes what happens to a relationship when you work ForYourDad.
Take note.

Chuck picked up this phrase and has been butchering it ever since.

He doesn't mean to, and honestly I think he doesn't expect me to listen to what he says.
But I do.
I so do.

Last night we walked by each other and he looked at me and said...
"...like two ships in the wind...."

I smiled at him because I love him.
And because that made no sense at all.

But mostly I smiled because somewhere along the way I have shown him that he doesn't have to make sense to make me happy.

Sunday, August 21

A Confession

I have a confession to make.
I can't go to church today.
I feel like such a heathen.

I have been at work for 2 hours and am so far under that I can't even tell which way the bubbles are going.

I mean, maybe I could go?
Just straight from work?
No shower....?

Yeah, not so much.

I really feel like I had things wrapped up pretty neatly yesterday when I left work.
Evidently not.

So why am I doing this and not working right now?
Well, there's a time for everything...and I have about ten minutes until that time.

So while we are on the subject of confessions...I have another one...
I thought about this while I was on the tractor yesterday.
Be forewarned this is a totally new subject.

You know the whole having babies thing?
I mean, like having them, ya know?
I'm fuzzy on that subject.

No, no, no, not the pregnant part.  I comprende' that.
I'm good with the whole thought of being pregnant forever 9 months, it's the 'getting-the-baby-out' part that keeps skipping on my CD.

Being pregnant---------------being a mom=how my brain works.

BUT I'M NOT PREGNANT!

I just like to think ahead.
Ya know, plan?

Maybe I should just keep these thoughts to myself...
...and go to church smelly.


Friday, August 19

Smile


I'll be honest.
I have about 36 reasons not to smile right now.
It's that kind of day.

But dwelling on 47 bad things is not the ticket.

So I'm holding onto hope, taking deep breaths, and keeping my chin up.
And smiling.


What else is there to do when the sky is so blue..
and the clouds are like pillows?
Smile.

When you see a new baby and first time mama...

or an elderly couple taking a stroll?

Smile.




How about when finicky eaters stop gazing over the fence...

and discover the grass is greener where they are?

Smile.





Or when you see a bunch of kids get let out for recess..


only to find them gossiping in groups?

Smile.




I'm going to smile because although I have 52 reasons not to...
I have over 200 telling me I should:).

Wednesday, August 17

It's Time

So.  How are you doing?
Me?
Oh I'm fantastic!
Hmmmm? What was that?
Ohhh the band-aids..you can never be too cautious.
Especially when you're working on the raaaaaaiiiiillllllrooooooaaaaaaddddd!
Yes, alllllll the live long daaaaaayyyyyy!

Maybe it's the weather, or maybe it's the fact that I caught Eddie doing nothing so I made him feed last night.
Whatever it is, I feel refreshed this morning.
Ahhh.

Since Eddie was so generous and offered to feed for me, I had a tiny bit more energy when I got home yesterday evening.
So I did what anyone else would do.
I made ice cream.
What? Isn't that what you would do?

OK, then I went out to eat with Chuck and Saigon and had a wonderful dinner.
Chuck had been in Chattanooga training all day so I was looking forward to seeing him.
After dinner they went to Cadens' baseball game and I was determined to go to the craft store for some wedding...stuff.

Stuff.
I thought I knew walking into the store exactly what "stuff" I was looking for.
However, when I entered the craft cave I was overwhelmed with the glue-stick smell, paper flowers and wooden-flute music and lost all sense of direction in my life.

What's my name again?
Yes, I'm here for a frame.
No! Not a frame...some card stock for my scrapbook.
Wait...do I have a scrapbook?

Anyway, I finally found a "safe zone" in the yarn corner and gathered my thoughts.
OK Rachael. Focus. You are here to look at the wedding things.
Oh yeah! I'm getting married! Awww I love Chuck..what a sweetie.
Rachael.Wedding aisle. Now.

After I regrouped I crawled out of the yarn bin and headed for aisles 2 and 3....and 4, 5, 6....
Oh goodness.  I probably spent 15 minutes in the wedding aisle.
I decided it was time to leave when I realized I wasn't getting anywhere.
So I took the bright pink feather boa off, and the pink "bride" hat, and the sunglasses with wedding bells, and the bejeweled "bride to be" jacket..as well as the garter belt...and slowly backed away.

Pssshhhhhh..that place was a bust.
I didn't need to buy anything anyway.

So I went to Target.

Where else do you go when you don't need to spend money?
Target! Duh.

After a good 45 minutes I had a pair of pants, shower curtain liner and a box of cereal and was headed to check-out..then I saw her.
She saw me too.

HK.
The Kitty.

It took me exactly .3 seconds to add a couple more necessities to my score and high-tail it outta there.
I suddenly had a mission.

It had become clear that it was, indeed, time.

So, this morning, after Chuck wakes up and is getting ready for work he may or may not have a badge-friend, and gun-buddy and a training manual page-marker.

And I may or may not have a temporary tattoo....

Monday, August 15

Please Don't Pinch Me

I had 3 heifers today.
And one yesterday.
And one the day before that.

It's, like, 84 degrees outside.
Very little humidity.
With a nice, cool, constant breeze.
The Bobcat started on the first lick today.
My cows are making more milk.
All of my new babies drank their bottles this morning.


Now, wanna hear something funny?
Eddie broke the arm on the loader at 7 am.
The battery was dead on the mixing wagon when he went to use it.
He then ran the mixing wagon out of fuel, while he was using it.

There are two things I will be taking away from today:
1.  I'm glad Eddie came to work.
2.  I'll be buying a lottery ticket on my way home.

That is all.

P.s. Aren't the sunflowers loverly?

Sunday, August 14

How My Babies Roll 2:The Dark Side(Video)

Have you ever seen the movie "Love and Other Drugs"?
Gosh! What an emotional roller coaster!

At first you're like WOW that's a lot of nudity...
..I can't believe I am watching this...
..Should I cover my eyes?...

Then you're like Awww she's sick...
..that's so sad...

Followed by he is such a jerk!

Then at the end you're crying.
Or, at least, I did.

Probably won't watch that one again.
But it was a good story..of love..and other things.

Chuck and I rented it after spending the afternoon on the lake.
I only burned my nose this time.
Poor shnozzzzz....

I love spending time with him especially on the lake.
I figured out why I like the lake SO much....wanna hear it?
Sure ya do...

I love being there, with him, because there is nothing else I can do but sit there and enjoy the company.
If I am home I CAN"T just sit there..I feel like I have to be cooking or....cooking...

On the lake I can't multi-task.
I can spend quality time with my honey.
Daaaawwwwww.

Alright I'm done.

So you know how I mentioned yesterday that I had to run an check on my new baby I spotted?
(Well, I did. You should read the post it will catch you up;).)

I walked out to the field and saw the baby(girl) nursing and mama(6185) was going nuts licking her.
Then mama turned around...

Mama had two, very large, feet sticking out...not her own mind you...
First though was that she must be having twins..the one nursing does look a bit small...

About that time I was almost taken out when a crazed "dingo-got-my-baby" heifer came buzzing by me..
Nope.  That's her baby nursing 6185.

They can't ever make this easy.

How do they not realize that they are about to give birth to a 75-85 lb animal??

So I got everyone into the barn and pulled 6185's calf.  A bull.  A big bull.
She was lovin' it.

Thought she had two for the price of one.
So I let her keep them both for the night, since she was all about feeding them.

I brought the little girl's C-R-A-Z-Y mama on up to the barn to be milked.
She is a nut job.
And I have a feeling that when baby girl grows up she will follow suit.
My suspicions are justified in what I am about to show you.

You know the sideways video that I posted showing the baby following her mom to the barn?
Relatively calm.  Just trotting right along...

That's not always the case.
Sometimes they go to the "dark side".

At less than 12 hours old you would think they would all be laid back, sleepy, hungry..etc.
You would be wrong.
A good 65% of them DO NOT WANT TO BE TOUCHED by anyone but their mom.
This makes my job difficult.

Sure, I could just throw them in the bucket of the tractor, or carry them in my arms...if I catch them...

I corralled this little jewel and, based on how that went, I decided to try and tape her attitude toward me.

In the recording you will hear my(yucky-sounding) voice and ALL I am doing is trying to get her to turn around...
She is NOT having ANY part of it..
(Oh and turn the sound up, not way up though or it will scare you..it sure scared me anyway.)

video
Like I'm killing her.

I can't wait to climb into her pen tonight and try to feed her a bottle for the first time.
I can almost feel the bruises on my shins already...keeps things interesting I guess:).

Saturday, August 13

Gino and I



Yesterday we had some pretty amazing cloud-cover.

It even made the sprayer look cool.


Like, totally.


OK, now remember this here picture?..
It's OK if you don't.
I don't expect you to.
No, really it's OK.
You got an F on the pop quiz.
But it's OK.


Now, look at zeeeeeesssss.....
Half-full.
Ta-dizitty-Da!



A view from the bottom-end...
Kind of puts it in perspective.

We still have the left side to fill, but it is much smaller than the right.
And by "we" I mean me and, the mouse in my pocket, Gino.

He says "Howdy".

Not really.  I mean the corporation...Tim, Eddie, the Dictator Bossman, and I.

We won't start chopping and filling the other side until Monday, so guess what?
I'm leaving early today.
Wooooooohooooooo!

I can hear the Angels singing.

I am so flippin' tired.
For realzzzzz.

Chuck and I get to spend some time together..and I will tell you 3 things we will NOT be discussing...
1.  His job.
2.  My job.
3.  The economy.
OK, the 3rd one was a gimme.

We are hoping to get some lake time in before the rain..that would be super, amazing, fantastic.
Maybe I won't burn random parts of my body this time!
Anything is possible.

But before I can leave I have a bunch of work to do.
I spied a baby out in the field earlier so I am off to check on it..

I'm sorry, I mean Gino and I are off to check on it.
He is so sensitive.