Friday, March 30

The Road Not Taken

I was going to be a vet.
That was the plan.

Or, at least, according to BossMan it was "the best thing for me".
He would know.

But here I sit, telling YOU about my daily routine and farm happenings.

I didn't go to vet school, I didn't even try for that matter...I simply allowed life to happen to me one step at a time.
I didn't know what I wanted to do, I just knew I wanted to be happy.
I sought the ever coveted "approval" of my dad...instead of following my heart.

Did I make mistakes?
You betcha.

If I had it all to do over again, would I?
Not in a million years.

It took me 26 years to get to this seat, and the past 3 have been the best of my life.

I am finally me, and make no excuses for it.

Thinking back to high school and college, I never tried to "fit in" really.
I wanted to be different...wanted to do my own thing.

I might not have gone down the more traversed path, but I didn't find my path either.
I found myself on some sort of undefined path, the one you take when you stop listening to the Angel that walks with you.

It was when I reached the end of that trail, that my eyes were finally ready to see the, less traveled path that stood before me.

During the times when I feel lost, I grab my girl Kirra, and we walk together and just breathe.
I try to remember that it took me a long time to find this place, and if it's where I am supposed to be, which is undoubtedly true, then all I can do is trust in myself and the One who brought me here.

It's not a matter of whether or not you's whether or not you are ready to trust.

 The Road Not Taken
TWO roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth;        5
Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim,
Because it was grassy and wanted wear;
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same,        10
And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way,
I doubted if I should ever come back.        15
I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.   
Robert Frost (1874–1963).  Mountain Interval.  1920.


Thursday, March 29

I Promise..

I promise to love you as much, if not more, after 20 years as I do after only 2 weeks.

I promise to never make you feel less than you are.

I promise to compromise.

I promise to be wrong and make mistakes, but learn each time.

I promise to give us all I have got.

I promise to fold the laundry when the pile is as tall as the washing machine.

I promise to nag you about eating breakfast.

I promise to try to anticipate what you need, and be there to help.

I promise to value your ideas as much as my own.

I promise to make you wake up for Church on Sunday...even if you only got a few hours of sleep.

I promise to laugh when you make up words to songs.

I promise to always be glad to see you.

I promise to always be proud of you.

I promise to freak you out with my sleeping habits.

I promise to treat your son like he has always been mine.

Though I am strong-willed I promise to let you help me.  I even promise to ask for help.  I can be impatient, and yes I am insecure at times,but I promise to remember you are not out to get me.  We are a team and our love will never stop growing.  I promise to take you with me when I leave in the mornings, and keep you close to my heart all day.  I promise to tell you "I love you" right after I already said it, because I don't ever want to forget to say it.  I promise you will always take my breath away.


Wednesday, March 28


Yesterday evening my 3 younger siblings and I loaded up and headed to New Market, to attend a receiving of friends for one of our family members who recently passed.

The Heat and BossMan are currently in Florida, so it was just us kids...minus Malinda who isn't exactly close by.
Beenie, Mercy and Taylor swung by the apartment and picked me up en route. 

This wasn't what you would call a happy occasion, but unlike many receiving of friends I have been to that were solemn and filled with tears of sorrow, this one was more of a celebration of a life well-lived.

Yes there were tears, and heavy hearts, but the overwhelming feeling of His presence was unmistakable.

After we left, the kids and I were headed home and I hit that "record" know the one you use when you are soaking up a situation that you don't want to forget...

Beenie was the chauffeur, I was riding shotgun..oohing and aahing at all of the "new things" that had been built since I had been out in the "real world", and Mercy and Taylor sat in the back asfarawayfromeachotheraspossible.

Beenie: "I feel like mom, driving you all around..."
Me(singing just like Carrie Underwood): "Whhhyyyyyyy...why you gotta be so bliiiiiiiind...won't you open up your eyyyyyyyeeeeeees....."
Mercy: "You act like mom."
Me(hitting my vocal stride): "...He's no good girl!  Why can't you see? somethinsomethinsomethin....whyyyyyyyyyyy....why you gotta be so bliiiiiiiiiiind....won't you open up your eyyyyyyyeeeeesssssss....".
Taylor: "Who's picking us up from school tomorrow?"
Beenie(shooting laser beams from her eyes at Taylor, via the rear view mirra): "I.Am."
Me(always helpful, leaning towards the window to avoid the heat from the beams): "IThinkBeenieIs."
Mercy: "I have practice."

Ten minutes go by....

Beenie: "So...WHO is picking you up from school tomorrow TAYLOR?????"
Taylor: Blank stare.....
We all hold our breath........

Beenie:".....................I AM!!!!!"

Me: "Hey...did I tell you all about the guy at the coconut stand who gave me frostbite??"

We ended the evening with a trip to the steakhouse and a vivid account of the time Beenie put a nail-bed fragment in her change-purse...for safe-keeping.

I hope we never change.

God bless family.


Tuesday, March 27

Frequently Asked CowLady Questions...

I get asked a lot of bovine lot lot lot.
I really don't get asked many cooking questions, political questions or even questions about history...go figure.
But cow questions..bring 'em on.

I have decided to dedicate this post to things I am asked time after time.
Those questions that, until you meet someone in the dairy industry, you would never even think of asking.

Along the way I have decided to pepper this post with pictures.
...I really just wanted to say that...

But really now, I wanted to share with you this little crossbreed fella who tried to head-butt me into next Tuesday...

His name is Maximus Decimus Meridius,and he will have his revenge for being woken up. it woke, or woken?  Is woken a word?
Ignore me.

I'm ready now.

Q.  How much milk does a cow make in a day?
A.  Cows are all different.  A beef cow, for example, is bred to make only enough milk to feed her young until weaning.  A beef calf will nurse small amounts, several times a day.  A dairy cow is a totally different critter.  She is bred to produce milk not beef, therefore is bred based on milk production.  Dairy cows only need to feed their calves colostrum(first milk, rich in antibodies), after that they are separated and the cows are milked 2-3X/day.  The dairyman's goal is to feed that cow so that she produces milk for 283 days.  Holsteins(the black and white ones) can produce 100-140 lbs in a day, sometimes even more.  Jerseys(the little brown ones) produce less, being smaller and all.

Q.  Pounds?  But I thought they measure in gallons?
YOU buy it according to gallons.  We are paid by the pound, or hundred weight.  There are 8.66666666666666666666666666666666666 pounds of milk in a gallon.

Q.  Why do you keep your cows in a barn instead of outside?
A.  I work with my nutritionist to feed my cows a balanced diet.  It would be difficult for me to know exactly what they were getting if I turned them out and gave them free-choice feed.  It would be cheaper to turn them out, but I would also make less milk and lots of other problems could arise.
It is also nice to keep them out of the heat, and able to stand under the fans in the summer and out of the snow in the winter.

Q.  Do cows sweat?
A.  Not like we do.  When the temperature gets above 60 degrees they start to feel it.  Jerseys not as much as Holsteins.  If you see a cow panting she is hot, and if I'm around..I'm gonna flipmylid.


Q. Is it really true that you can make a cow walk up stairs but not down?
Mine prefer the elevator.
Actually, that is true.  They have no depth-perception, that's why cattle-guards work so well.  If you see a cow bobbing her head up and down as you are approaching, she is trying to gauge your distance.  Also, if you see a cow avoiding a shadow, it's because she doesn't want to fall into a black hole.

Q.  Do you drink your milk?
No.  But I would.
I stand behind my cows and my product 100%. There are no "hormones" or "residues" in my milk.  

Q.  Do you use growth hormones?
Not just NO, but HECK NO.
It is actually illegal for us to sell milk to DFA(Dairy Farmers of America) if we used them, and if we did we would lose our ability to ship milk and be fined.  Plus it's bad for the cows.  bST or, Bovine Somatotropin  is a metabolic protein hormone used to increase milk production in dairy cows.  Personally, I don't know ANYone who uses it.

Q.  Do you have a calving season?
Nope.  Our cows calve year-round. 

Q.  You talk about treating "sick" cows..what does this mean?
After the cows have their babies, I move them into a group of cows whose milk does not go into the tank, my "sick cows".  It actually goes down the drain.  The cows in this group could have anything from mastitis, a hoof infection, or maybe they haven't passed all of the placenta after calving.  At any rate, these cows are on medicine that has a "milk residue withholding period".  Meaning, after you give her the medicine, it is not safe to sell her milk for an X amount of days.

Q.  What's your middle name?
A.  I'm not telling.

Q.  Are you gonna be a farmer forever?
A.  Probably, or until ,my comedy career takes off.


Q.  Are cows mean?
A.  I have never met a mean cow.  Mean bulls are a different story.  Cows have a "flight zone", and do more reacting that acting.
See mom down there?

She is giving me the classic "I want you to leave" look.
Through all of the pictures she isn't looking at junior..she is looking at me.

Q.  Can you really "tip" a cow?
If you believe in cow tipping, then you should try snipe hunting.


Monday, March 26

Almost Made It...

But not quite.
Yet so far away.

I almost made it 3 weeks into marriage without weirding-out my husband.
Who knew Benadryll overrides your ability to hold your inner weirdo back?
No me.

So here I am, expecting to receive some sort of "I-didn't-know-I-married-a-weirdo" papers today.
Maybe he will wait until tomorrow.

Do you have quirks?
Better yet, does your significant other have quirks that only you know about?
Like maybe they dip french fries in jelly, or wear their underwear inside out?
You still love the weirdo though, don't you?
...don't you?

I like to think I am a fairly normal person, despite my affinity for talking to things that don't talk back.
So what if Beenie and I once made up a song about a hair was a good song!
We had hand movements and everything!

Well it has been brought to my attention that just because I seem normal during the day, does not mean the same holds true when the sun goes down...

All I was trying to do last night was tell Chuck that the back of my thigh was almost frostbit, due to the coconut ice cube that the guy taking the pictures gave that so wrong?!
When he didn't know who I was talking about I got mad, naturally.
I got even madder when he kept asking if I was awake...OFCOURSEI'MAWAKE!
I had been looking straight AT him during this entire adult conversation and he had the audacity to ask if I was awake!?
Since I obviously wasn't getting anywhere, and he was acting so innocent about the whole thing, I huffed out a breath and rolled over.

About that...

I have always been under the impression that when I go to sleep at night, I slip into a coma faster than it takes me to type this.
AsAMatterOfFact I am proud  that it takes me such little time to fall asleep.
No tossing and turning for this gal.

Evidently the 'coma' only affects my memory..not my movements..or speech, as was brought to my attention last night.

How do you fall asleep?
I verynearly always fall asleep on my back.
As soon as the twitching subsides, I enjoy keeping it real by bending my knee, thus making what Chuck calls a "tent".

This "tent" quickly becomes the leaning tower of pisa, seeing as I can get NO traction on sheets.
Only to be whippedstraightbackup, countless times.

Chuck, who doesn't fall asleep so quickly, proudly admits to "leg sweeping" me because the continuous reenactment of the collapse of the tower keeps him awake.

As if the tent action wasn't enough, I would like to welcome the "forehead smack" to the party.
I never had one.single.clue that I do this EVERY night.

So apparently shortly after I slip into my coma, I bring the back of my hand up and rest it on my forehead.
Not a scary concept really, until you take into account the audible "SMACK" that my hand makes when it comes into contact with my head.
I still don't know if this one is correct, because I have no bruising.

When Chuck sees my hand come up, he knows good and well that he is in the "elbow danger zone".
To avoid my elbow coming into contact with his head, he has developed a survival strategy...he uses his hand to throw my arm back down to my side.
It's about self-preservation at this point.

Evidently I have done the forehead smack FOR-EVER, according to Malinda.
I still have my doubts.

But wait!  There's more!

The piece de resistance comes when I do something that I won't even go into detail about.
It scares even me.
Sometimes I try and beg my subconscious to keep me from doing it before I go to sleep.
True story.

This thing is termed the "do this if you want to put fear in your husbands eye" maneuver.
All I will say is it involves propping up on your elbows with your head tilted back while sleeping.
This technique will earn you the "crazy old lady" title later in life.

Chuck decided to bust out the "Rachaels sleeping habits" subject as a party-starter recently.
It was a hit.
You're welcome honey.
Whatever I can do to make EVERYONE in the room feel better about themselves.

Hey, I thought chewing on socks was weird...but that's nothing compared to what Rachael does when she sleeps.

This is me, just giving you another friendly reminder that you could never be as weird as me.
You're welcome.

I see twin beds in our near future.


Sunday, March 25

Finding Luck

Today is my favorite day of the week...Sunday!
I am so looking forward to going to church and getting back into the swing of things.
You know you have found "your" church when you miss it while you're out of town.

I believe spring has officially sprung around here, along with my allergies...ugh.
But spring means things are getting green and we are gearing up to start chopping rye in a couple of weeks.
Lots to do!

This past week I made a discovery of sorts...
You see I used to, meaning prior to January, find four-leaf clovers ALL the time.
We're talkin' a shamrock-a-day.
Lucky me, right?!
However, here lately I haven't seen any at all.

I was thinking about this on Monday as I walked to the horse farm to see Chuck and Gus.
Am I not lucky anymore?
Did I reach my quota?
Maybe this is a sign...
All kinds of things were going through my head.

I got a little discouraged and tried to push the negative thoughts out of my mind.

When Chuck was leading Gus back to the field, I got a phone call and decided to just stop talk to my friend instead of following my guys.

When I got off the phone I looked down and realized I was standing in the middle of a big clover patch.
Deciding to test my previous hypotheses, I bent down and started looking for a 4-leaf cover.
I found one!

I promptly gave it to Chuck and looked down only to find another.

My luck hadn't run out!

For the past 6 days I have found at least one lucky clover a day....I've got my groove back!

After finding one yesterday afternoon, it occurred to me that luck has nothing to do with it.
All I had to do was start looking.

In a lot of ways I can relate this to life. (Don'tGetScared).
I think too often we just stand still and "let" life "happen" to us.
We don't grab the bull by the horns and make a difference.

I had been allowing life to happen around me instead of being part of it.
I couldn't expect great things to just happen, no matter how strong my foundation.

I know people who complain about everything yet they don't do anything to change their situation.
Why not?
Why accept the things you don't like, when you can change them?

Why make excuses for complacency?

I watch that show "Tabatha Takes Over" on Bravo in the evenings when I have time, and the overall reason she "takes over" a business is because the owners/managers have grown to be complacent therefore business is suffering.
Bottom line.

Personally, it is my fault if my business is not at the level I want it to be. End of story.
I can't blame anyone but myself.
I just have to try harder.

As for me personally, if I fall short of being the person I want to be, I just try harder.

I'm not preaching to you, just sharing my thoughts from the week.

I ran across a quote that has been stuck in my mind and randomly pops up at the most fitting times...

Choose a place to stand, and move the world

Is your foundation strong enough to hold you up?
Keep your eyes open, the nearest four-leaf clover might be under your feet.


Saturday, March 24

Sick But Worm-Free!!

The good news is it's the weekend!
-The bad news is I'm sick...and weekends don't make much difference to me, other than the fact that the co-op is crowded.

The good news is I found a combination of medicines that seem to be helping!
-The bad news is I spent $50 before I figured it out...

The good news is the medicine unstops my nose!
-The bad news is I still sneeze with violence I have to hold onto something.

The good news is I wormed the high herd yesterday!
-The bad news is during one of my violent sneezing fits, I broke the gun used to distribute the de-wormer.

The good news is I'm free of worms!
-The bad news is I'm notsurewhatthatmeans....

The good news is I got to see my NorthCacalackyLivingCousinAmo Thursday night!
-The bad news is I got into a verbal in the parking's a long story my friends, but do me a favor?  If you pass-up the button you're supposed to push to get the parking ticket, don't expect the 7peoplebehindyou to back up.
Mmmmmk pumpkin?

The good news is I got my milk tested yesterday!
-The bad news is I forgot my tester is a bubble thief...I discovered that when he talks to me and gets inmyface, I tuck my chin and try not to breath while I'm talking.
In preparation to head-butt I'm sure.

The good news is the group of cows I am synchronizing seem to be cycling as planned!
-The bad news is I'm breeding 13 this morning...

The good news is our home loan should/maybe/might close next week!!
-The bad news is that Chuck has so much to start packing...

The good news is I'm going to stop this now!
-The bad news is I will probably be back tomorrow;).


Thursday, March 22


That's what I had engraved on the inside of Chucks wedding band.

I wanted to tell you before but couldn't because it was a surprise.

Would you like to hear a summary of what happened yesterday?
(It doesn't matter because in my head you do...)

-Gus came to me instead of Chuck in the field.
....I had a ball of grass in my hand and he thought it was a treat...I'm a trickster.
Then he gave me the aw crap, go ahead and put the halter on look.
He probably won't come to me again.
I like cows.

-Tim brought his dart gun over to the horse farm for them to borrow.
...I sat and listened as he gave precise instructions that only a Navy Seal could have followed.
They ended up not using it and Tim got a free goat out of the deal.

-I bedded two barns with straw.
....Which caused my throat to close up at 1:45 this morning.
I'm dumping Allegra for somethingthatworks.

-I ran the stairs for the second time this week.
...Which could have also attributed to the throat issue.

-I went home and made brisket, crab cakes, baked potatoes, Meyer lemon curd, vanilla cupcakes, mocha ice cream, guacamole, and marshmallow vanilla-bean buttercream icing.
...And ate them all together.
I kid.
But I did eat 2 crab cakes...

Chuck and Saigon ate dinner and said that it totally made up for the unfortunate roast incident a few weeks prior.
*Always buy a roast that is in clear packaging...

Let's discuss the food...cuz it was de-licious...

The brisket...
-Made it in the slow cooker for the first time.

-Seared it really well on both sides, dumped it-fat side up-in the slow cooker, deglazed the pan with a thick-sliced onion and mixture of; strong coffee, red wine, liquid smoke, lite soy sauce, sriracha, worcestershire, and a few spices.
-Low for 4 hours=perfect.

The potatoes...


-Really. YOU can bake a potato.

The crab cakes...
-Ever since Chuck tried the crab cakes at Bud and Alleys restaurant in Seaside, he has been talking about them.
They were that good.
Verrrrry little breading, and basically just crab on the inside, makes the perfect crab cake..inmyopinion.
-Here is the recipe I used, except I didn't measure anything and used Panko for my breadcrumbs.
If you like crab cakes you should give it a try because it's a very basic recipe..and it's really good!
-OH, and I drizzled them with lemon/honey butter when they were finished.

The guacamole...

-It was green...not yellow..that didn't translate well.
-5 avocados, 1 jalapeno, 1/2 red onion, 2 cloves garlic, 2 tbsp. fresh chopped cilantro, ground cumin, ground pepper, sea salt and lime juice to taste.
Money. Every. Time.

The cupcakes...
-I have been trying to find a vanilla cupcake recipe that I thought would be moist..because so many are dry.
Yesterday I found a great recipe here.
-Before we left for the beach, I happened to be at the grocery store on that super-secret day when they put the Meyer lemons out, so I bought some and forgot.
...That happens a lot.
I remembered I had them yesterday and they were still good!!!
Being that I have always wanted to make Meyer lemon curd, I looked up Martha's recipe here and made it.

-I then used it for the filling in the cooled cupcakes and made a marshmallow vanilla-bean buttercream to frost them with.

I think I hit a home run here folks.

The ice cream...
-King Arthur Flour has THE best Mocha Madness ice cream recipe EVER!
-You can find it here, and make it start to finish in 30 minutes since it's non-custard based.
You won't regret it.

Enough talk about food!
Get to work!


Wednesday, March 21

And On The Second Day...

Chuck and Gus had a "meeting". 

Let me tell you a bit about Sir Gus-gus....
He has never HAD to do anything.

That pretty much sums it up.

But we got this...Chuck gots this.

Beenie and I looked at Gus initially and had an idea that his previous owners hadn't really done much with him, as far as riding goes.

We picked up on this when they told us..."we don't do a lot with him because he is too much for us to handle...".
We're quick.

This is no problem fact I look at it as more of a plus for Chuck.
I really feel like they can learn together....

Even though Chuck always said, "shoooootttt I can ride a horse!  I know what I'm doing!", I had my reservations and signed them both up for their lessons out of intuition.

So yesterday was the second session...and it was very unlike the first.

Chuck went out to the field to get Gus just as he had the first day.

Since it was Tuesday, and horses obviously take Tuesdays off...Gus ran the other way...

After some chasing and threatening my husband climbed on the fence and jumped on Gus' back as he ran by...
I kid.

Actually, after some chasing and finally a bucket of I'm-giving-in feed, Chuck caught Gus and brought him in.
I like cows.

He then groomed Gus in preparation for his ride.

I sat here on the cow-people bench...

See my foot on the right?

And tried to ignore Knox....

Who was busy  waiting on me to throw the ball...again...

So I did and he left, cuz I threw it hard.
I can't help that my biceps are enormous...

I took this one for purely scientific reasons.

Because you didn't know horses could stand on three feet...

They headed out into the arena, with the trainers Jocelyn and Brandon.

Being that it was Tuesday, Gus informed Chuck that he was a different horse from the day before...
...and I took pictures.

Because that's what supportive wives do when they purchase wild Mustangs for their non-equestrian husbands.

The trainers suggested that, instead of Chuck and Gus getting into a disagreement, Brandon should hop on and suggest to Gus that he ACT LIKE SOMEBODY.

Sorry I yelled. 
I like cows.

I spent the rest of the afternoon in the camper up there, napping and doing my nails...

Did you notice how my honey represents via his t-shirt?
I love him.

Sometimes he even shaves.

I caught him playing with his ring last night and swatted his hand.
True story.

Then I told him if he lost it to not come home....
Hahahahahaha....I meant it...hahahahahahaha....

Anyway, when Brandon was done riding, Chuck resumed the saddle and finished out the lesson.

In a way I'm glad Gus made it harder the second day...that way they both know who is in charge.

One thing that makes Chuck special, is he wants to know how to do everything the right shortcuts.
If you show him once, he will remember forever.
He's good like that.

I'm fairly certain I can't remember how to ride a bicycle.

This is on the wall in the horse barn...

I love it because it is concise.

Life isn't about winning or's about getting better.

Have a great day!!


Tuesday, March 20

Gus-shakalaka and Wedding Sneak peek

We received a sneak peek of our wedding and day after photographs!!

Because you are you and I am me, I am going to link them up here for ya.

But first!
Chuck had his first lesson session with Gus-shakalaka yesterday and it went great:).
I think they are a great match...I done good.
...No full body cast yet.

I spent the majority of the day catching up and figuring out what exactly Teddie did while I was gone.
There are still some questions, however I think most of them are better left unanswered.

I did get back into the thick of things by having to climb up on top of the manure separator approximately37times because the paddles kept messing up.
I can't for the life of my figure out how they separated manure without me...
They need me.

And when did it get so warm out?!
Mooocho least that's what my Hondurans tell me.
It either means it's hot or very colorful...process of elimination folks.
Edna digs it.

I'll tell you one thing though...there will be much wacky-wackying this week, because wherever the grass can is.

Chuck has his second session with Gus today and I am really excited for him..I will try to take some pictures!

Oh, and before you click on the link below I want to tell you that the song that is playing during the slide show was the same one played as we walked back down the aisle.
I didn't hear it until I looked at them this morning...and it made me cry cuz I'm a sap.

I hope you don't get tired of seeing the pictures, because as I receive them you know I will be sharing them:).


Here is our sneak peek!!!


P.s. A 'wacky-wacky' is a weed eater and I can't change that..I have tried.
P.p.s. Edna got a manicure and thinks she is high society...I can't change that either...

Monday, March 19

Mrs. CowLady

On wacation I bunned my bottom still huwts.
Chuck wooks at me and says, "awwww...".
It's ok..cuz it huwts.

So I'm back at work!  Woot!

Did you miss me?
I missed you.
And my cows.
And the stars over the farm.
And the smells.
And the sound of the vacuum pump running during milking time.
...But I had fun!

I wish the "professional" pictures were done so that I could show them to you!
..I can't help it...I blame the I-need-it-now society that we live in.
..and the pot of coffee I drank this morning.

Did you know that I get up early?
Like..crazy-people early?
I do.
I forgot.

But here I am!
With a hyphenated last name!

The wedding was perfect.
It really was.
And I remember quite a bit of it to boot!

I took the advice from a couple of friends and stopped to take mental pictures of moments.
Unforgettable moments....

After I put my dress on and was sitting on the front porch bench of Malindas cottage, having pictures made...The Heat walked around the corner, talking to Malinda, turned her head and saw me, clasped her hands together and said, "Oh Rachael! You're gonna make me cry".
That was special.

BossMan and I sitting on that very same bench, waiting on our cue to leave for the ceremony...he looks at me(in his blue and white seersucker suit) and says, "I'm not in a hurry sister.".
Lump in my throat.

Riding through the town of Seaside, in a golf cart with an 'Almost Married' sign on the back..people waving and shouting "congratulations!".
Pretty neat.

Staying tucked away so that my groom didn't see me, and trying to talk about the weather..without breathing..
That was hard.  Minnie Mouse on helium..."Pretty day!!!". On dads arm, while we walked between the sand dunes, and tried not to fall in the sand.
I got halfway down and saw handsome!  In his linen suit, with his bright blue and pink cow tie.
I had to look down the whole way, because my face was shaking so badly when I smiled.

Holding Chuck's hands during the ceremony, with a the-Titanic-is-sinking death grip.
His fingers turned white.

Chuck saying his vows...I have never heard anything more meaningful.

Trying not to cry while saying mine...and failing miserably.
I gave the preacher a "just a sec" look while trying to holdittogether!
Nothing. Can prepare you for that moment.

Trying to drag my husband down the aisle, before they introduced us.
The spotlight can be scary.

BossMan giving his toast.
It was a moment.  Unexpected to say the least.
There are no words to describe how much it meant to me, or how surprised I was.
He keeps me honest.

Caden telling me he loved me after the ceremony.
That one gets me every time.

The only song I remember hearing, which was played by acoustic guitar, while I walked down the aisle... "Without You" by Keith Urban.

The overall feeling you get at that moment when the world stops, everyone you love is there, and you cannot help but feel embraced by God, because the steps you are taking are the first in the chapter of your new life.

I almost forgot!

I did this...

It was a huge undertaking.
Meet Operation: Chuck'sGettingASurpriseHorse.
(We call him "Gus").

What can I say?

It was the best wedding gift I could come up with.
Besides, who wants to read a book without a little excitement?

This life, this love that you and I've been dreaming of for so long/
Would all be as good as gone, without you...


Friday, March 16

Remember Me?

First of all...I CANNOT wait to tell you all about my dream wedding!
Second....This is the first time I have had the wherewithal to type coherent sentences.
Third...I burned my bottom lip:(.

Coming home tomorrow and I have decided to spend two weeks showing you ONLY pictures from the wedding. Youcanthankmelater.


Friday, March 9

What I Love About Cows

Hey! Guess what?

Yesterday was National Ag. Day!
..Like agriculture...
..Like big fields of corn, windrows of hay, udders full of milk...
Did you celebrate?
Celebrate! You know, throw a party?  Toast to "Agriculture!"??
...Did you eat?
Then you celebrated!  I appreciate that.

You know what I love about cows?
Every goll-darned thing.
Fo sho.

Their wet, slimy, feed-covered noses.

How if you're standing in front of them when they eat, they cough and blow feed all over you.

How soft the skin on their neck is, especially when they bend it and it wrinkles...

The way their legs are covered in clay mud after you let them play outside for the day...


If there's mud to be found, rest assured they will find it.

How freaked out they get when you get into their pen, only to turn around ten minutes later and try to eat your hair...

The raucous fights they have using their heads as weapons..

Ever been hit by one of those things?
Picture a Mini Cooper head-butting you.

How innocent and sweet they are as calves..

..With no sense of direction.

Their eyes..

Their big, beautiful bodies that make them seem untouchable...

When really they are some of the most unassuming creatures you will ever meet.

I love cows:).

Thanks for supporting agriculture!

FulfilledCow Lady

Thursday, March 8

Tito Vogue

 Yesterday morning I walked into Tim's shop to realize that I was witness to an impromptu photo shoot starring Tito..

Having never been lucky enough to sit in on one of these, I quietly stepped aside and watched as the subject took direction...

 ...and balked at a request...
Cats can be so argumentative.

 Tito, the star, refused to do anything claiming "model block"..
However, when he was promised a cup of warm milk, he warmed up a little himself....

 You mean like zeeeessss??

 How about I dance like en da clubs....

 Oooopszees, I fall out ze wendo...

 Look at all ze pretty furs, I am so pretty..

Now, where's the milk?

Typical demanding model.


Wednesday, March 7

What I'm Here For

Those of you who don't have children...(everyone else just nod..)..
Do you occasionally get a glimpse of what your future holds?
Maybe in grocery store when the double-wide shopping cart, being pushed by the angry-looking woman with a child strapped to her back, one in the basket, and two in the toy car below the cart, threatens to run you into the canned you inadvertent hold your breath as you go by, hoping to not catch the "pregnant" bug?
..Not that I do that...

I feel like I get glimpses like that at work, when things like this happen...


Yeah, that's her bucket holder around her neck.

To enrich the quality of the situation, I'll show you this one...

Not only is she sucking on the water's a perfect shot of her predicament.

I don't even ask anymore, I just hook my fingers in and pull.

I try not to over analyze but, really we all know what's going on here.
I'm being groomed.

While kids are hopefully in my future, I have a few years to go before I get there...

Which is good, because there are so many other places they could get their head stuck.

I should have been a fireman.