Monday, October 31, 2011

Wise words from Dalai Lama

"It is necessary to help others in our daily lives, merely praying for them isn't enough."

Barn owl

Common barn owl. Nocturnal. I think the barn owl describes my current sleeping habits. I can hardly stay awake until 9 pm and then am wide awake and get up at 3 AM. I am thinking ahead to this next weekend when the time changes. I will be up at 2 AM...with the owls! I have always been a "morning" person but this is pretty extreme. This is something I go through every year so no big surprise. I was hoping I would outgrow it. I don't take daytime naps. Actually I have never been able to take a nap during the day and not for lack of trying. I have to do "quiet" things when I am up at this hour so as not to wake LaVern and the dogs. Great time to catch up on reading, hand sewing, meditating, surfin the web, writing letters, manicure, look up new recipes, plan my day, dream, pray for others, laugh at myself for being up so early, listen to the owls. Wow, I didn't realize I was getting so much done by getting up early. Maybe it isn't so bad after all. (yawn)

Friday, October 28, 2011

One end to the other

What a week! I have been going from one end to the other as far as bedtime and sleep. Going to bed at 9 pm and up at 3 AM. Last night it was 12:30 (very rare for me) and up at 4. (couldn't sleep) I am soooooooooo draggin this AM. I had an Amish run last evening and so I was coming through Creston about 9:30. LaVern was at work. He was repairing a ceiling in the kitchen and could only do it at night when the kitchen is closed. So I thought why not get groceries at that hour. Luckily the HyVee stays open until 11 pm and I think there were 3 of us total shopping! ha ha Kind of nice not to hurry down the aisles because people behind you. From there I headed to the dreaded store (wally world) as I had a couple things to buy there. They have these great little flashlights for $3, LED one AAA battery (and it comes with it). We love them because they fit in your pocket, you can hold it in your mouth when you need both hands to do something and they last forever!! Flashlights are a BIG deal when you live off grid and you don't have outside yard lights (which I lOVE) and you come home in the dark. We did have a couple solar motion lights by the house door but they got moved down to the hen house. I never go anywhere without a flashlight and usually my pocket knife. I have another Amish run this AM so best get going. This evening I will go back and pick up the people I drove last night. Tomorrow a farm auction, hopefully with some "junk". Time to get perked up!

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

I love the Internet

I do not like the bill I have to pay for the Internet but it sure was FUN this morning to look at a live web cam in Greeley, Colorado and see all the snow my brother is getting hammered with. From what I can see on the trees I would say easy 4 inches already and still snowing! lol I love web cams also. If you want to see some cool ones then look up web cams in Estes Park, CO. They have about 7 of them in different locations all over in the park. Pretty much a white out up there this morning. LOTS of snow! Love it. I finally fired up the wood cook stove this morning. Not really cold in the house but I want to slow cook a chicken breast in the oven today. We are going after a load of firewood when LV gets home from work today.

5:30 AM All still quiet

There isn't alot going on this early in the morning. My brother in Greeley, CO. is getting snow, 4 to 6 inches! Still "warm" here and no moisture in the air. The nice thing about being up so early is that I can read all the blogs that I follow and emails. I am working on Christmas gifts so I think I will brew myself a cup of tea and do some hand work. Good morning! Rise and shine! It's going to be a great day!

Once again 3 AM...wide a wake

Monday, October 24, 2011

Red Aurora Borealis

Common name: Northern Lights

8:30 tonight and LaVern was outside. He came running in and told me to quick come outside, forget putting shoes on. The sky above our house and trees was RED. It was amazing! Neither of us had seen anything like it. Millions of stars in the sky and this big red mass that looked like it was shooting up from the ground. We called our neighbor and he said it was the Northern Lights. Not sure if he could see them as he has a big yard light. We called our son, Rainer who lives in the country and he went outside and could see it. Our son, Ross who lives in a big town could not see them because of all the city lights. I think to see red is pretty uncommon and usually it happens at higher altitudes. No matter. The light show at our house was tremendous! Something LaVern and I will remember... and the wonder of it.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Playing possum

LaVern went to gather the eggs and before I knew it he was in the house loading the pistol! An oppossum was in one of the hen's nest sound asleep. Out we went to the hen house (I followed up LaVern with the 4-10 shotgun) to rid the varmit. His tail was hanging out of the nest. LaVern steps in front of the nest and bang, shoots the pistol. No movement. "Is he playing possum"? I asked. Another shot and this time movement so I knew he'd got him. LaVern is getting better with that pistol. When we had the sick racoon in the yard last year he shot 19 times and the coon was still sittin up. I'm surprised the oppossum was in there as we don't let the hens out until morning to free range. Tonight I am setting my trap in the pole shed with carrots and am going to try to trap that darn groundhog.

3:30 AM spot check

Friday, October 21, 2011

Money, money, money

Don't you wonder when did money become more important in our society than health, happiness and just personal well-being. When did greed take over our natural human tendencies for peace, self-control or even fulfillment? The way we choose to make money and then spend it is a direct reflection on ourselves. The news is filled with people (50s & older) that have lost their "nest egg" and are not able to get jobs. One single woman said she didn't want to have to move in with her son and his family and burden them. When did the world change that families can't take care of one another? This morning (bizarre as it may seem) I have a strong desire to finally begin to learn how to meditate and I would love to learn yoga. Money is energy. Spend it wisely and spread peace.

Thursday, October 20, 2011


Cake pops

I've been out of the loop I guess because I sure didn't know about cake pops. Don't these look like fun? Will have to get them on my list of things to do with the grandchildren! Just google "cake pops" and have fun with all the ideas! A simple thing. Simple joy.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011


We use aLOT of these boxes of matches. I think there is a box or two in the teardrop trailer, another box in the RV, the barn, used to be a couple here in the house (1 or 2 by each stove). Now that the weather has turned a bit cool I decided to fire up one of the stoves. No matches. I looked all over the house and no matches. LaVern finally brought a box in the house so we could have heat. Okay, I thought. No problem. I'll just pick up a few boxes when I go to the grocery store. NOT!! I could not believe the price. I guess it has been a LONG time since I bought a box of matches. $4.35 for a package of three!!! Holy smokes!! (just had to type that) I'll be hoarding my boxes like gold! Didn't buy the three in the grocery store. Should have priced them at Sam's Club. Going to watch for them at auctions. Best keep my stove "fired up" so I don't have to relight it! Matches....a hot item I guess.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011


Sometimes life feels overwhelming. There was a shooting in the KS community that we moved from and a 22 year old young man (whom we knew & LV worked with his mother) was killed. Another young man pulled the trigger. Senseless act. Pain. Two families' lives ripped apart forever. When terrible events like this happen one can only seek comfort in a higher power. God is Love, and love is stronger than death. We have to offer our sorrow to that which is greater than ourselves and find the peace that passes understanding. God's Spirit is with us always, no matter what happens. I don't understand why this happened, but I know whom I can trust in the midst of it. Praying these families find peace.

Monday, October 17, 2011

Primitive finds

Love, love, love. I am sure some of you are wondering, "you are going to do what with that"? (And are shocked that I actually paid money for them!) ha ha On a whim LaVern came home from work Friday and we hooked up our little teardrop trailer, threw some clothes in, loaded the dogs and away we went. We only drove to Shenandoah, about 1 1/2 hours away! lol Stayed overnight in a Walmart parking lot. I am so thankful the dude who started Walmart was a camping enthusiast and they still allow overnight parking there. Saturday AM we went to some friends' house, kindred primitive spirits. They were having an open house and had lots of goodies under a tent outside. It was a beautiful fall day and perfect for this. She gave us a tour of their home. LaVern stepped in and said, "oh, oh.........this is going to cost me money". ha ha She has the look that I am going for. I'm just not quite there yet but these two pieces will give you some idea. From there we started towards Council Bluffs and came upon a small town where LaVern's great great grandfather is buried. He has never been to the grave but his mother and sister had. There was a funeral procession driving out of town so we decided that since we had time we would look up the grave. We drove out of town a ways but didn't see the cemetary so LV went back to the gas station and asked a fellow standing there where the cemetary was. He gave him directions, about 5-6 miles out of town so off we went again. Found the cemetary and started looking for the grave. It was quite a big cemetary and we could not find the grave so LV first called his sister. She gave him the approximate location. Still couldn't find it. So he called his mother and got more directions. Still couldn't find it. Called his mother again. Still couldn't find it. After about two hours of searching we gave up and went on to Council Bluffs. I must have needed a little city shopping as I had a great time (even at Menard's). We shopped and shopped and finally at 3 pm I told LV I had to get something to eat as no lunch. He took me to Olive Garden (my favorite and he will eat there)! After some food we were able to continue on shopping. (I had a big list). Finally at 8 pm we called it quits. LV's eyes were bothering him so instead of driving home we found a Walmart and pulled in. Got some drops for his eyes and called it a day. More shopping on Sunday and then we finally drove home, shopped out and had our fill of city. Later in the evening LV got online and looked up the town where the cemetary is located. Yup, as you may have already guessed.........we were in the wrong cemetary!! There were no signs there stating the name of it so we had no idea we were not in the right cemetary. This one is south and the one we should have been at is north of town in the country. ha ha At least we can say there are no Burtis' buried in the Thurman cemetary south of Tubor. We were determined to find that grave because after all, LV's 85 year old mother found it so why couldn't we!!! Needless to say, we are going back in a couple weeks and finding that grave!

Thursday, October 13, 2011

The Rose

Red rose, red rose

Which is a sweet scent to the nose

So soft and smooth

It makes my heart soothes the mind and soul (Eve Anderson)

A surpise gift from my darling hubby. Thank you, LaVern. I love you always.

Have you hugged your horse today?

One of my granddaughters giving her old horse a big ole hug! He deserves it as I think he has been giving rides for nearly 20 years! Priceless.

Crockpot cooking

I love my crockpot! Haven't used it for a spell since I need for it to be a cool day and I can fire up my wood cook stove. This is the best crockpot, slow cook all day and I'm burning wood we gathered. Suppose to stay cool today and I had a roast to cook. Will add the potatoes, onions and carrots (from the garden) later in the day. I'm painting the ceiling of the porch today and then LaVern can start putting up the tin. TIN??? Can't wait until it is finished and then will post a picture. Hopefully still warm enough we can enjoy sitting out there a few evenings!

Today is a holiday, Sukkot, Feast of Booths. Okay, it was on my calendar and I admit that I had to look this one up. You should do the same. Peace.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Moon and then the fog once again

Tonight is the night

This was the moon in Idaho Springs, CO. last night! Awesome!

Monday, October 10, 2011

Saturday, October 8, 2011


Against the wind
I'm still runnin' against the wind
I'm older now but still runnin' against the wind
Well I'm older now and still runnin'
Against the wind
Against the wind
Against the wind

Ya just gotta love these lyrics from a Bob Seger song. (those of you from the hippie era will know him!) I love the wind. (I'm gonna catch some grief from others about that statement. lol) I know, it is miserable to try to do any work or play with the wind blowing 40 mph. But the wind always reminds me of who is in control and that people are unpredicatable and changeable, just like the wind. Wind is essential to nature. Think of all those little seeds that need to be in a different place. We are in our second day of wind, gusts up to 30 mph. My friends in western Kansas are reporting 60 mph but then they are a windy bunch! (luv you guys). I'm still runnin' against the wind.
The wind blows where it wills; and though you hear its sound, yet you neither know where it comes from nor where it is going. So it is with everyone who is born of the Spirit.~John 3:8

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Awake 11 P.M

LaVern has been asleep for hours. I knew we must be approaching a full moon as I am wide awake. I know. Studies by Austrian scientists have shown that sleep patterns are not affected by the phases of the moon. I wonder how many times I have blogged about this? I should have been included in the study cause I could prove them wrong. But I'm going to make the best of it and surf the web for hours and the first of the week go for my full moon walk!! Sleep tight. Good night, moon.

Making the best of it

Simply changing your attitude can make any circumstance better. By making the best of it the difficulties are easier to cope with. My life has certainly improved by choosing to make the best of whatever comes. Do your best. Trust God with the rest. LaVern tells people that he always picks the line at the grocery store or discount store that ends up being the slowest or one that ends up having a problem. A difficulty, right? Nah. It's a good time to check out all those nifty little gadgets that they have placed there for impulse buying! Or watch the reactions or hear the noises from the people in front of you that are now delayed waiting in line! Groaning, complaining and let's not forget the sighs. Life is simple. I have a choice in everything and I choose just to make the best of it.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Negative thoughts

Do you ever find yourself thinking negative thoughts? That inner voice within you concentrates on what's wrong and nothing you do or say is good enough. I tell my children (and am still telling them!) such negative dialogue keeps them from doing their best or from trying something new. Think of it as seeing yourself through God's eyes. You are a child of God, beloved and special. I know He encourages me to get up when I fall down and to keep going. So make it easier on yourself, forget the negativity and fill yourself with encouraging thoughts. You'll be surprised of the outcome. (It may not be what you had planned but He has it all under control) Jesus loves you this I know!

Monday, October 3, 2011

That's just the way it is.........but don't you believe them

Standing in the line marking time
Waiting for the welfare dime
'Cause they can't buy a job
The man in the silk suit hurries by
As he catches the poor ladies' eyes
Just for fun he says "get a job"
That's just the way it is
Some things will never change
That's just the way it is
But don't you believe them
They say he little boy you can't go
Where the others go
'Cause you don't look like they do
Said hey old man how can you stand
To think that way
Did you really think about it
Before you made the rules
He said, Son
That's just the way it is
Some things will never change
That's just the way it is
But don't you believe them