Thursday, March 26, 2015

Another Addition

Hannah has been working and saving for the last 9 months to buy a puppy.  She's been very specific in what she's looking for.  She wanted a border collie/Australian shepherd cross.  And she wanted a female.  After months of searching and saving and waiting, we came across a puppy that we thought would be a good fit.  The only problem?  He's a "he"....not a "she".  Hannah decided that she'd take a male, and I'm not sure who's more taken.... the puppy with Hannah, or Hannah with the puppy. 
Meet Bandit.  He came to us at 6 1/2 weeks, because his mama had died a few weeks prior.  Poor little guy....
 Bandit LOVES Hannah.  LOVES her.  He wants to sit at her feet, and be with her at all times.  It's really quite sweet...

The other day, Hannah wasn't feeling well, and was laying on the couch.  That little guy wouldn't sit still until he was laying beside her, his nose buried into her hair.  He didn't want me...or Art.... just Hannah.  Frankly, I think it's a match made in heaven.
Of course, all The Girls want in on the puppy action, and they've all been "helping" to care for this little guy, but you can tell already where his loyalty lies.... and it's all good.

Saturday, March 14, 2015

Adullam Decorating

We've had such amazing weather 'round these parts for the last couple of weeks.  Ah. Mazing!  The Girls have been spending loads of time outside, and are anxiously waiting for me to bring out their bikes.  Problem is, I know that we will still have snow at some point... maybe Sunday, even.  And every year, I wash all of their winter outerwear, and then it ends up snowing, again, and I have to do it all over.  Not this year.... I hope! 
Ellie Mae was outside the other day, doing some decorating of the yard.  When I saw what she had done, I'm not gonna lie, I had a bit of a lump in my throat.  There are many times that I'm brought to tears as I think about, and am thankful for our life on the farm.
Adullam, which is Hebrew for place of refuge, is what we named our ranch years ago, when it was just a hope, a wish and a dream.  It's been exciting to see how The Girls have taken the name 'Adullam', and run with it.  We'll often find our brand or name of the ranch in different places, and they use it in their play also.  I love it!

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

The Going-Ons of Girls

The Girls (usually) love to help.  Some of them love to help with inside chores, they all love to help with outside chores, and they especially love to do things to surprise me....
We've been using our fireplaces all winter long.  They've been lovely and warm and cozy, and the girls love to cozy up on the couch in front of a fire and read.  It hasn't necessarily been the Girls' job to stack wood, but they know that if there's wood accessible, and it's extra cold outside, I'm more likely to light a fire.  Many warm(ish) afternoons this winter, the girls could be found hauling wood from the shed to the front door by using their sleds, and then stacking it neatly so that we could easily go and get it to start a fire.  We've almost used up our wood that we cut this fall - this is the last bit of it which the girls' stacked last week.   
See?  Told ya.... Sitting on the couch in front of the fire.... I have been trying to read books aloud, many days after lunch for a short time.  We've been reading through the Little Britches series, which every one of us has enjoyed.  I am so happy that the girls love to read!
On Family Day, we took the Girls' on a little adventure to the Reynolds Museum.  We took them there several years ago for our first Goerzen Family Adventure, and it was fun to go back and visit.  They remembered a few things from the first time, but it's been a few years, so it was fun to go back and for them to see it again, being a bit older.

I've said for many years that Molly is my mini-me.  In real life.  She has the same hair, same inappropriate-almost-crossing-the-line humor, same skinny legs that I most definitely had a child.  She is also my "dump buddy".  Every time I have to go to the dump, she wants to come along (even though we no longer get ice cream, since the nearest ice-cream store is half an hour away!).  Last weekend, I was heading out to the dump, and she comes out of her room to come with me....dressed exactly like me.  It wasn't planned, but she sure is cute!
Here is one thing about Farm Life that I don't love...a child bringing a dead animal into the house, with its' guts hanging out, excited to show me because "it's SO cool!".  Really, I'm happy to look at it outside, will cut it open so we can examine it's insides, but when it comes into my domain, and my second daughter is exclaiming, "Ah!  The guts are stuck on my gloves!", it's just a little too much.  Abby found this weasel, dead, out by the chicken house the other day.  It was just a wee one, but I was glad it was dead - those stinkers will go for my chickens, come spring!  She said she had to fight off the cats and dogs to bring it to nice of her!!

The sun.  The trees.  The blue, blue sky.... I don't know that I'll ever tire of this....

Art's been working on finishing up some more projects around the house.... God bless that man!  He made up an open shelf for me with barn wood we dug out of one of our outbuildings.  It adds a bit of visual interest in the kitchen, and I'm super happy with it.  Good job, honey! 

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Another Birthday to Celebrate

At the end of February, we were able to celebrate another birthday of one of the Girls.  It's hard to believe that Elizabeth has turned 8!  She is growing up right before our eyes...  Here are a few things to remember about our baby....
1.  She LOVES camo.  Seriously.  Loves camo!  She loves to go out and hunt coyotes with Art, and for that, she feels the need to be "suited up".  We bought her this buff for Christmas, to match everything else, and she wears it all the time....often even to bed!  And no, Elizabeth doesn't need glasses - they are simply an accessory these days.  If you look closely, you'll see that these glasses don't even have lenses.  She just likes the look of them.
2.  Elizabeth still loves to ride.  This was taken one day at the barn, and there are often times that after she's ridden, Ellie Mae will remind us that she needs to "practice her tricks".  She REALLY wants to be a trick rider.  She asked for a trick riding saddle for her birthday, but that didn't happen...

3.  The girl loves owls.  LOVES.  She talks about them regularly, sleeps with 2 of them, and is always looking out for our resident owl.  She actually knows lots of facts about them as well, and can be found reading more in our bird book.  We got her an owl watch for her birthday, which I don't think she has taken off since then.

4.  Ellie Mae is a cutie.  Bright eyed, always willing to help, laughs inappropriately (what can I say, she's her mothers' daughter!) and excessively.... This girl wakes up in the morning with a big smile, and goes to sleep with a big smile.  She works hard to keep up with her sisters, and loves to cuddle.  She's a keeper, this wee one... Happy Birthday, little lady!

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Spring Has NOT Sprung

Well, after that last post about how warm and wonderful the weather has been, Old Man Winter wanted to remind us that he's still hanging around these parts....most likely for a while.  We had our driveway down to asphalt in some place, the snow around the trees was starting to recede a wee bit, and the dogs found a few patches of brown grass to lay in the sun and start working on their tan.  Until last week, that it.... I knew that we weren't done with winter, and I knew that when the cold and snow came again, it'd feel doubly rotten since we had been having spring-like conditions.  All of these things I knew....and yet, I found myself biting my tongue to not complain about the blizzard we had last week.  I think we received about 8 inches of snow.  It was very pretty....and very cold!  I got the fire crackling, put on my warmest sweater and socks, and tried to stay home.   In the midst of it all, I'm not gonna lie....the snow is beautiful! 
Because of the warm weather, I actually had a few trees that also had been fooled into thinking that spring had sprung, and therefore had started to bud.  Here's hoping they won't be too traumatized...
I don't know that I'll ever tire of seeing sunrises....
...or sunsets

We definitely have some "old charm" on this farm of ours.  I just love these old, hand painted signs that are placed at various points around our land.... Friendly and welcoming, don't you think?

The steers secretly loved this blizzard.  Ok, maybe not...

....but they sure are cute!
The Girls found a new pastime.... jumping off the deck into a deep snow pile.  They kept shoveling to fluff up the snow a wee bit, and had loads of fun!

I'd like to hope that this is our last major snowfall, but alas, this is Alberta.  And I know that can't possibly be true.  Winter roads, studded tires and slow moving snowplows are a way of life for us hearty ones, and we'll be seeing them for a few more months yet, around these parts.   


It makes the idea of spring so much sweeter though, doesn't it?

Thursday, January 29, 2015


Well, here goes....another random post.  But so much has happened that I need to share.  Extremely exciting things. For example:
1.  Art was craving chili, so I told him I'd pull some out of the freezer for dinner.  I heated up the French bread in my steam oven (the wonder-of-all-wonder appliances), defrosted the chili, grated some cheese, and voila!  Dinner is served....  Ellie Mae mentioned it first, and once I took a bite or two, I wondered why the chili didn't taste quite right.  Coupled with the fact that I could find no beans in it... and I realized that I had taken out PASTA SAUCE instead of chili, which we were eating straight up (with some cheese, of course...).  I quickly decided that if you heap pasta sauce on top on warm French bread, is still does taste alright.  Not as good as chili though, and not as good as pasta with sauce.  I have dubbed it "Sweet Chili Heat".... Tonight, we'll have the leftovers, but I'll actually make some pasta to go with the past sauce...
2.  Last week I went to Goodwill, and found a painting of an old barn that I fell in love with.  On that back of it was the quarter section of land that the actual barn was located on.  The only problem was that they wanted $50 for the picture.  Really?  Goodwill?  Why so pricey?  There was a blue tag special on, but the picture had a red tag, and for all my trying, I could not get them to lower the price.  This week, I popped back in to see if the picture was still there, and much to my delight, it was there...waiting for me.  And the signs everywhere said that everything with a red tag was 50% off.  Hallelujah!  So I picked that baby up straight away and brought it home with me.  It sits in my office now, and I've decided that this may have started a new collection...
3.  Mini eggs are out in full force, which means that they have made it into my home.  Is this a good or bad thing?  Both.
4.  It's been crazy warm around these parts, so we've spent lots of time outside.  Snow has been melting, which means our yard is an ice rink, but that's ok.... We've had fires and made s'mores,
we've been able to ride outside a bit (before it got too icy!), as well as haul horses for lessons...
my Mom and I were able to get out for a walk or two... It's been really, really nice.  This weekend, temperatures are supposed to get back to their sub-zero normalness, but that's ok.  It's been a pleasant break, and made the winter feel so much shorter!
5.  Hannah got her learners license last week.  She was super proud of herself, and very excited.  Art's taken her out driving once already, and she's itching to go some more.  Heaven help us all... I can't believe this is happening already!

Monday, January 19, 2015

Fine Tuning

Every year, after we've taken down Christmas decorations, I always get the urge to rearrange and redo things.  Since we haven't quite figured out where everything fits in our new place, it's been fun (for me!) to try out new ideas.  This is the wall in the dining room, and originally, I had the whole wall full of black and white photos.  That didn't seem to fit, though, and after Art had painstakingly hung them all, I took them down, filled the holes and touched up paint.  Then, I replaced them with these old doors.  I've had these doors for many, many years, sitting outside, just waiting for the right time and place to be used. 
The sign is a very cool Christmas present which we received, and the stars were laying around in various places around the house.  I love the idea that I can create a new look without spending any money.  These doors were literally dragged out of old barns and outbuildings that were being torn down, and although I have (more than) a few of them, I love how they look, and the instant character they give a space. 
We've talked about putting some sort of cabinetry along this wall, to give me a bit more storage, but that solution is so permanent, and I'm not 100% sure that's what I want.   So, for a short (or long) term solution, we repainted this jam cupboard Art made, many years ago, and threw it in the corner. 
This cupboard was the first piece of furniture Art made for me when we were married.  He used 2x4's and a hand saw, and constructed it in the living room of our little basement suite.  Methodically, he stapled all of the chicken wire to the wood.  I then painted it navy blue, and the top, which is pine, was stained with a natural type finish.  Once we moved, I put it outside, where I've been trying to "weather" it, but I'm really happy with how it turned out.  The white painted chicken wire is especially eye catching.  I have another old cabinet sitting out in the shop, waiting for shelves to be cut and installed, which I might use in place of this, but I was too impatient to wait.  For now, this'll definitely do the trick.    
I also wanted to get my office in some sort of order, so I enlisted of The Girls to help.  We organized, purged, created storage solutions and found homes for most everything which was crammed into my office.  That room had turned into  the "I don't know where this should go so throw it in my office" room, and it needed help!  I drug out an old, solid maple table which I had sitting in an outbuilding.  We bought this table a few years ago at a farm auction, and I think we paid about $15 for it.  (Sidenote: it's so great to have a husband who is a woodworker, who can see the beauty behind the nastiness of old things, to support me in my crazy farm auction purchases).  I was going to paint the table, but upon further inspection, I realized it wasn't as bad as I had remembered, and instead just needed a good clean.  I also spent too much time scraping off chewing gum from underneath the table (who does that?!  Yuck!!), and used a whole lotta disinfectant to make me feel like it was somewhat clean.  We lugged the heavy beast into the house and threw it in my office to set up a sewing area for me.  Oy.  Such excitement on a Friday night in these parts!  I puttered around, put up some pictures on the walls and found a lamp or two, organized some more, and Voila!  Here's the result....
For years, I've dreamed of having a room all to myself, where I can leave out sewing or craft projects.  Now, instead of lugging everything to the kitchen table, where I have to clean it all up every time we eat a meal, I can (in theory), chip away at a project a little bit at a time.  The Girls were awfully excited about my "new" office, and especially the fact that I could do any small mending immediately when they require it, instead of waiting for months for me to pull out my sewing machine.  I suppose this means no more excuses for me...
Sometimes I think I have a serious problem... keeping old furniture on the chance that one day, I'll use it.  But then, when I grab something like this old cabinetry or table, and put it to good use, I feel completely justified.  I'm not sure if that's a good or bad thing...