Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Oh What a Night - Rewind Wed.


Ooh, what a night
Late August, back in O ‘14
What a very hairy time I seen
As I remember, what a night

That’s what I’m singing as I write this. If only the Four Seasons could be here in person.

Last night Farmer and I were in bed watching Farm Kings – Lisa King was wearing my shirt again and I was waiting to see if she would take her bibs down so you could see it!

Just before 11 we heard this strange noise – like a hissing sound – like when I have the garden hose turned on filling the pool. Only this was ramped up. So many thoughts went through my mind as we were trying to discover the source. Such as:

Is Son #2 playing a joke and turned on the hose?

We’ve had a crew here the last month up and down our road installing new gas lines. Last night around 5:00 we discovered they cut our water line and they had to fix it. So another thought I had was – I’m gonna look out the window and see Ol’ Faithful in my yard. The fix didn’t stick.

Well, none of the above.

We opened the slider and you could smell the faint aroma of gas and right away we knew.
I said to Farmer “I’m calling 911.” His immediate stupid (this word will be used a lot here and if you think it’s harsh or that I’m a bad wife for admitting this – tough) response was “No” as he searched around for his pants and shirt. I felt like I had one leg shorter than the other because I was walking yet going nowhere – I couldn’t find any clothes. I then said “I don’t care what you want I’m calling.” He agreed – he got smart – for a while.

The 911 dispatcher asked if we were sick or injured. I explained the work going on and that we were sure it was a gas leak. She directed us to leave the house immediately, don’t turn off any TV, lights, phone – nothing. Move away from the house.

I had a problem. I cleaned that day and there were no dirty clothes lying around to put on and I wasn’t going out in my “bed clothes”. Why I didn’t just get some out of the dresser drawer is beyond me. I ran up to the laundry room grabbed some jeans, T-shirt and bra. By the time I got them on Farmer was out the door on the phone with one of the sons walking towards the front of the house where the leak originated. I must tell you the noise from this leak was very loud. You had no doubt where it was coming from. I was on the phone with another son who had been on the Fire Department and asked if he still got calls to see if ours went out. He doesn’t but was asking where we were. “Get away from the house” he said. “Where are you and dad?” “I’m by the clothes line pole and dad is walking towards the leak.” I am also yelling at Farmer to come this way – get away from the house. Mr. Stupid ignores me, waves me away and Son is telling me to get farther away from the house and to tell dad to also.

I finally got him to at least get into the road but Mr. Stupid was too close. I was heading east away from the house on the road. I called back 911 to see if the Fire Department was on the way. She said they should be there shortly and asked me which gas company we use. I told her Consumers and she said they would call them. She then asked “Can you still hear the gas?” I was having a hard time hearing her because the noise was so loud. I said “Yes.” Then she told me that if you can hear it you are too close. I tried to relay to Mr. Stupid and he ignored me. I told her I was heading away but I couldn’t get my husband to comply. She told me to tell him he needed to move. So while I’m on the phone with her I’m yelling (to get above the noise of the leak, because I’m farther away from him and because I’m mad) for him to come this way per the police. He’s totally ignoring me. So I told her I was moving and he was doing his own thing.

Just west of our house is the barn driveway. I saw headlights coming from that direction then stopping and swinging around and disappearing behind the corn. The field across from the house is corn so tall we can’t see what’s coming or going up the barn driveway. Later I discovered it was Son#2 coming to the rescue but he came to a halt when he heard the sound of the escaping gas above the sound of his car.

A car approached from the east – the direction I was walking so that forced Farmer to follow me further east with his flashlight to stop the vehicle. It was one of the fire guys and now Farmer HAS to stay there. He told the fireman that Son #2 was at the barn driveway (the west side of the leak) waiting for the fire trucks.

After a bit I just sat down on the road – totally disgusted with Mr. Stupid and dead tired.

The fire trucks came and Son #2 flagged down the first one and told it to stop – which it didn’t. He jumped up on the floor board and said “Stop there’s a gas leak”. The driver slowed but didn’t stop. Finally my son reached through the open window, grabbed the steering wheel and said “Stop. There’s a gas leak there by the road.” Apparently Mr. Macho man got the idea and stopped.


A few minutes later Son #2 phoned Farmer and I asked Mr. Stupid to request my daughter-in-law come around and pick me up. I was totally ticked off at Farmer and just wanted out. I couldn’t walk to the farm unless I walked through acres of corn well above my head, in the dark, barefooted.

She drove around the section and picked me up. As we were driving back she told me her side of the story. Their story started when Farmer called Son #2 telling him we had a gas leak.

Son #2 and daughter-in-law jumped in the car because they thought the leak was in the house. They were flying down the barn drive way heading to our house and when they got to the end where the corn stops (the corn muffled the noise of the gas) Son #2 hollered. “Stop, stop. Reverse, reverse!” She slams it in reverse and narrowly misses wagons parked in the field. When he heard the noise level of the leak he could imagine a large explosion. But when, daughter-in-law is telling me we are laughing our heads off.

We got back to the other side of the house by Son and I told them I was totally unprepared for such an emergency. I flew out of the house – hair a mess, no make-up, no shoes. I said I had visions of Channel 8 finding out about this, an explosion, an interview and I would have to hide so I wouldn’t have to be on camera with bad hair and no make-up. Another absurd thought process. I did say that when this event was done I was going to make an emergency box to keep by the back door. Son said “I can see it now, a huge wardrobe closet by the door with clothes, make up and curling iron. And a very long extension cord.”

Even though the fire dept. and police department called the very stupid (a lot of this going around) Consumers Power Company, they said we were not their customer and they had no service on our road. I wondered who in the world has been cashing our checks the last four decades. Because Farmer has a hot line to someone there and was already talking to him, a representative finally arrived.

She - the representative - and Farmer/Mr. Stupid went into the house to check for gas levels and she checked the leak. Because the wind was strong enough to dissipate the gas and no levels were found in the house with minor levels just outside my bedroom she said it was safe to re-enter. Keep windows shut and do not turn on the air conditioner we were told. We would have to wait for another repair truck to come fix the problem now that the official Consumer’s person said “Yep, it’s a gas leak”. Apparently we and the several Firemen were too stupid to discern the loud, gas smelling sound as a gas leak.

I decided to trust this woman I’ve never met and went in to go to bed. About 30 minutes later she and Farmer had to traipse through the bedroom again checking levels. I was so tired and thought right about then that maybe being blown into heaven where I could get some rest might not be such a bad idea.

Somewhere in the wee, wee hours I heard voices and footsteps wandering through the house again. I was waiting for them to come into the bed room but thank goodness I was spared. 

Eventually the leak was fixed.

It’s time to get that emergency box ready. Who knows what’s in the future.





Friday, August 14, 2015

After the Rain











Thursday, August 13, 2015

Nominate Ag Promoters for a Great Opportunity


Do you know someone who is making a difference in the Ag world? Someone who is bridging the gap between consumers and farmers? Someone who is knee deep in promoting and educating about farming? Someone who has fresh ideas, new ways to communicate and their voice is being heard? Then, listen up; you’ll want to know this.

Farm Credit has launched a nationwide search called Farm Credit 100 Fresh Perspectives. They are looking for 100 leaders who are changing the future of rural communities and Ag for the better. Leaders who are using new ideas and ways to get the great message of farming across in a way that is better understood by all sectors of our communities. Men, women, young, old, large farms, small farms, organic, conventional, ag professors, ag students . . . we need all of these voices represented in this search.

Once they find the top 100 they will choose 10 individuals who will each receive a $10,000 award to help further their leadership contributions. Also, a trip for the top ten and a guest to Washington, D.C. early in 2016 is part of this deal. By the way if you’re looking for a guest, I’m available.

So, you’re probably wondering how these top 100 will be chosen. A panel of experts on rural matters will evaluate and the entrants and decide who are the best 100.

Could it be you? Or, perhaps your neighbor, Facebook friend, one of your favorite bloggers you follow? Trust me there are more and more voices coming to the arena of promoting agriculture and they are getting better and better at sharing their message. This is the perfect opportunity to help someone who is good at this to become great. And nowadays we need fresh new perspectives to promote the truth and reality of farming. We need our voices to ring out above the fear laden and false messages being spread.

As an agvocate myself, I will be nominating many of the wonderful bloggers and fellow agvocates I follow.

Here’s how you nominate.
Nominations can be submitted until Dec. 18, 2015. A panel of experts will evaluate the entrants and select the top 100 honorees to be announced during National Ag Week, March 14-18, 2016.
You can nominate as many individuals/groups/organizations as you like

Here’s a direct link to the nominating page: http://www.farmcredit100.com/fresh-perspectives/search.

Also, for more details in categories please take a moment and jump over here: http://www.farmcredit100.com/newsroom/blog/farm-credit-launches-program-to-honor-rural-visionaries to their page to see the 10 categories used to find their top 100.


Let the nominating begin . . . well actually it has begun but let’s join in the fun and nominate away! 

Sunday, August 9, 2015

Pass Me the Xanax Please


We're dog sitting. Normally a fine job to do.

Last night around 11:10 so said dog wanted out - not the "spastic I see something I want to get" out, just the normal "please can I go pee” out.

I turned on the outside porch lights opened the slider and he shot out of there like a bullet. I flipped the pool light on and could see he was running after a rabbit, or maybe a possum. I'm hollering at him and Farmer to come - neither was quick to respond. He got a hold of the critter, tussled around and then yelped and ran back to me.

Farmer arrived about the same time. The dog was foaming at the mouth, and acting like he's having an asthma attack. I grabbed his face to see if anything was bleeding and wiped the foam away and then hmmm -the smell. It didn't hit immediately. Now we have a foaming, asthmatic, smelly dog that is freaking out. The weird thing is, the smell wasn't horrendous and had a weird scent to it - not WOW this is skunk. It was more like "what the heck" is this?

All I can think of is that upon my son’s return, I will have to tell him his precious 85 lb. Golden Smelly Retriever has died from some sort of foaming seizure. I immediately turned the hose on his face to wash off the foam. At this point we aren't sure what got him. The smell is there but not overpowering. And, he was scared. He wanted in the house. We brought him in so we could see better. We washed his face off again and he was not a happy camper.

We could smell something but it still wasn’t overpowering and the strange thing is you couldn’t really smell it outside.

Farmer and I went back out with the flashlight to see if there was any dead critter sprawled out.
When I looked back in the family room to check on the dog he was face scooting – you know how they scoot on their butts? Well, he was rubbing his face all over the carpet.

I opened the door and hollered at him to stop and the smell was greater than before. And he was still spastic. I’m thinking Oh My Goodness my house!

Farmer and I discussed where we could put the dog. Garage? No too full of crap that he could ruin and it was really hot out there. Shut him in the bathroom? No he would scratch up the doors and etc. Take him back to my son’s house and smell up two houses and not know if the dog calmed down or stroked out during the night? No, I don’t think so.

By the time the discussion was finished with no answer through my Xanax deprived mind I figured the dang dog already contaminated the house let’s keep him here to watch him.

About 20 minutes later he calmed down. I rewashed his face with water and baby shampoo. Funny thing is he didn’t smell too strong.

We opened windows and turned on the attic fan to suck the smell out. We could go outside to fresh clean air and reenter the house to “Oy, that sure does stink.”

I found some “remove cat smell” spray and sprayed it on the place where the dog had been grinding his face into the carpet.

The smell was traveling through the house. It became strong back in our bedroom where the dog hadn’t even entered.

At this point it was 12:10 AM. I had a wet faced grand dog, fear ridden visions of having to replace my family room carpeting, raw hands from washing them with vinegar, various soaps, sugar scrubs and sandpaper to no avail and way past the Xanax assisting stage.

I just gave up. And said “It is what it is.” – I learned that wise statement from a saged chick.

I crawled into bed with a sore throat from the smell and turned on Joel Osteen – if anyone could ramp up my attitude it would be him.

This morning the smell still lingers, or should I say hovers stubbornly. I took the dastardly dog out to pee and when I came back inside the smell hit like a wet sweaty gym sock. Blggghhh.

I have now sprinkled every surface with baking soda from my 3 pound bag I use to make stress relief soaking baths – see the irony here?

After a while I will vacuum it up and the smell will be gone – I say while clicking my red shoed heels together.

My hands? I heard gloves are coming back into style and I’m gonna be the talk of the town.

Wednesday, August 5, 2015

My Rules for Merging



I’ve been doing a lot of merging lately and I have a few self-made rules and I’m sure that you want to hear what they are.



1. You can drive faster if no one else is in the field. Merging is somewhat boring and repetitive and I’m always thinking about the next thing I need to do, so let’s just get this done. So I speed it up a notch or two until Farmer comes along and will preach . . . um I mean teach me the correct speed and the reasons why.

      2. Wheat Thins are the snack of choice. They keep me going. And since there is wheat in the title they have to be good for me. Right? My rule – when the Wheat Thins run out, I’m done.




       3. Cupcakes are not allowed in the tractor. The rows get way too crooked and frosting makes the  steering wheel sticky.

     
 
  4. You are allowed to stop at every photo opportunity you come upon. There is so much beauty that you can’t help yourself. And it gives you a quick break from bouncing.

       5.  Peeing is priority. I’m sorry I have to drive up from the field but I refuse to flash a coyote or acquire poison ivy where I can’t itch.

There are more but it’s time to hit the fields again. And, please don’t tell Farmer about this – especially #1 or he’ll put some kind of monitor on the tractor.


Sunday, July 26, 2015

It's Not Fair Thank Goodness



“It’s not fair!” We hear it all the time. “It’s not fair that your piece is bigger than mine, that you are skinnier than me, that you have more money . . . ”

I agree – “It’s not fair!”

It’s not fair that I live in America when I could have been plopped in any other country.

It’s not fair that my husband still loves me, well likes me, ummm OK he tolerates me and that’s saying a lot!

It’s not fair that I live in a beautiful home with a sturdy roof that doesn’t leak and a furnace that works.

It’s not fair that I have four wonderful, healthy sons.

It’s not fair that my belly is full and hunger is short lived.

It’s not fair that my closet has more clothes than I can wear.

It’s not fair that my refrigerator and cupboards are full.

It’s not fair that I have 3 beautiful daughters-in-law.

It’s not fair we have a business that takes a lot of work and that we are healthy enough to accomplish it.

It’s not fair I can walk outside my home with no fear.

It’s not fair I have eight healthy, fun loving, incredible grandkids.

It’s not fair I have _______________________ fill in the blank. I could fill a notebook.


So, it’s not fair and I thank God that it’s not.

Thursday, July 23, 2015

Celebrate the ordinary

Today is the only day you have. Don't wish it away, worry it away or plan it away. Your ordinary days add up to life.



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