After our super sad tragedy with our little Wednesday cat, I was ready to give up on a kitten in the house. However, Madelyn has a few friends that had kittens they were trying to find homes for. So, we started over.20161226_082143.jpg

Meet Tux. He came through the roof of a friend of ours shop and there was no mother around. They worked to keep him going and thought about maybe trying to have him as a shop cat. However, with their security system, he kept setting off the alarm. So they were having to kennel him at night which he apparently didn’t like all that much. They offered him to us.

Since he has been here, he has decided that I am where he likes to sleep. That is basically all he does.


It’s really a lot of work.


And it is basically all the time.


He did have to spend one night at the vets. I took him over because he had a slight prolapse on his behind. I was not real concerned, because I had seen it before in cows, pigs and goats. The vet, however was more concerned. She had never seen one in a cat before. She tried to just push it back in. No. They had to keep him and do surgery to stitch it back in correctly. Good grief! Who knew? But he is recovering nicely and will get his stitches out when he goes back for his booster shots the 19th.


Meanwhile, he will continue to be a pampered brat.


Making everything about me his bed.


Unless I am not around. Then he has another warm spot to snuggle into.


It’s really hard to grow up a spoiled house cat.


Oh, were you working here? Sorry, you aren’t now.


He is really a cute cat and everyone seems happy again. Except maybe the dogs, who aren’t sure about this annoying little pest that jumps on them and chases them around the house. When he isn’t sleeping anyway.

A night out

A dear friend from high school called and asked if I was interested in 6 tickets to an Iowa State Men’s basketball game Monday night. YES!! Of course I am. I haven’t spent more than a couple hours with the kids the last few weeks, so guess who filled those seats?


My 3, Niece#4, and little cousin. They were so excited! We had really great seats and they loved the magical atmosphere of Hilton Coliseum!

20161114_184700.jpgI love having the opportunity to do something that we normally don’t do. It was a fairly good game and they are a pretty good team.

We did get an extra special treat that we didn’t even know about. There is an amazing young man who lives in our town and he was honored during the game as the first Athlete Of The Game from the Special Olympics! I love this family and was so excited to be able to be there to watch him accept this honor!

20161114_193421He might not have been able to hear us screaming his name, but we were!

screenshot_20161114-193607Thankfully, because of the big screen, we were able to see his big smile and watch him get his signed ball. Way to Dayton! We are so happy for you!

20161114_190828The Cyclones won in the end. The kids were happy and wound up all night. Definitely a good night out!

At the Apple Orchard

As I said before, the days have not been good for drying so we are in a holding pattern. So we had time to make the trip over to Center Grove Orchard. It’s not to far from us and I grew up with the family that runs it. They are amazing people who have set up the entire place to be fun. Exhausting, but fun.


I took the same crew, without Gramma and Madelyn. These three were having the best day ever anyway, so we might as well just keep going!


I think it is a requirement that you go immediately to the corn pit. I don’t like being covered in corn dust, but apparently the kids love it.


It was basically a wrestling match with these three. They seem to wrestle continuously.


Then we have to head back in time to the old school and the nursery rhyme houses. Once they had run through all of them we went through and looked at the animals. They have pretty neat little set up for kids to check out a variety of different types of animals. I laughed at how much time they spent there. You goofs do realize we have al those animals at home, right?


Not sure the tires were set up for this, but they sure had a good time running through them.


Up to the Discovery Barn. It’s a pretty neat hay loft. They have it set up so that kids can ‘harvest’ the different types of crops, like eggs, corn, carrots, potatoes, grapes, tomatoes and also see the difference between corn/soybeans and hay/straw and feel wool and take all their produce to the market.


Then the bounce pillow. This is pretty much the reason Landon came. He loves to jump. Off things, on things, just jump. They spent a lot of time jumping.


Then we went on the go cart type peddle tractors.


The next stop was the big slide. It’s a really good big slide. the tube at the top is a little concerning, but don’t worry you won’t hit your head. They did that a couple times until they were distracted by the pig and goat races.


This was actually pretty funny. The pigs and goats all had costumes on.


Then on to the rotten apple slingshot. They worked pretty had at trying to hit the targets.


They had to pose for another picture.


This is the ‘cool’ pose. These three!


We stopped for supper at the Bunk House. It was really good. Ever had applesauce from an apple orchard? You should! They make a pretty mean burger too!


Then we took the hayrack ride to the corn maze. We had a minor injury during that, so not a lot of pictures, but don’t worry everyone survived. Just a minor bruise and a reminder that corn stalk stumps are really hard. After that, they were off to the combine slide. They thought this was pretty neat because they got to slide right through the back of the combine.


It’s actually really cool. Things I would never think of.

After that it was getting chilly and heading for time to close. We had one last stop. The train.


Of course they had to sit clear in the back and I didn’t get a picture of the engine. It’s a great little train ride. By the time we got back though, the wind has really changed directions and the temperature had really dropped. It was a chilly hayrack ride back to the store. They all got a caramel apple, I got my apple cider donuts, Honey crisp apples, and apple cider. We all came away tired and happy. It was a really great day.


At the Pumpkin Patch

I love Halloween. Actually, I just love fall and Halloween is a fun part of it. I waited until the last minute to run to the pumpkin patch with the kids. My youngest was a little panicked we weren’t going to make it. But the days have not been good for drying, so Brother didn’t have anything he needed me to do, so off we went. We grabbed Niece#4 to spend the day with us.


As soon as they got there, they took off to pick the best pumpkin. It is very important to pick a good one!


Thankfully there were lots of good ones to choose from!


It’s pretty serious business and the discussions were pretty intense between these two. They looked over everything trying to find the one they liked the best.


With the pumpkins finally chosen and delivered up to the table to be weighed, they were off to the other fun waiting for them!


The corn pit was especially fun. Even better when your other cousin shows up! Of course they went to visit the face painter first. She does a pretty good job making up whatever they want. Of course, since the face painter happens to be my daughter, I might be biased.


There was a lot of rolling, digging, falling and burying.


But really, what is more fun than rolling in corn?


He tried to bury himself, he did better burying his brother.


See the face laying beside him? Yeah, that’s Landon. This wasn’t quite good enough.


Ahhh, that’s better. He loved it. They spent a lot of time in the corn.


Denton stayed down in the corn pit for most of the time we were there. Who knew how much fun a corn pit could be.


The other two boys went to play Yard Jenga. They thought this was pretty tricky.

Us girls decided to try Yard Yatzee.


This I think we are going have get. It was pretty fun.


They even had a pretty neat Yatzee scorecard.


We didn’t finish completely. But it was a fun time in some beautiful weather.


So then we took a break and had dinner. Pulled pork sandwiches, chips, pickle and drink. Pretty tasty little picnic food.


Then we were off for a hay ride! Up the loading chute to find a seat.


The whole crew! They even let the face painter join us.


It’s so peaceful out at Eden Hills. We got to peak at the new girl llamas and all the other goats. Traveled around looking at the scenery.


It’s just pretty and relaxing out on a hayrack going the speed of tractor.


This smile makes the long day worth it. Loved her butterfly face.


Just being silly. There was a lot of that through out the day.


My three kiddos. The sun might have been in their eyes!


Of course you can’t leave without visiting the market. They had some gourds! So cool and so many different types and colors.


I could have spent a lot more than I did. I love these old windows with the string and clothes pins. My problem is I have 3 wall hangings at home that I haven’t found a place for yet. So I will wait on these. For now. But I want one!


This building is full of fun crafts from local artists. And they truly are artists. There are some very talented people from my town. One does wood working, I really want a birdhouse. That will be a one of these days things. There is one that does horseshoe and metal art. I got a couple things from her. A horseshoe cross and a moon and star. Another one does crafts with things from nature. I loved her little wooden pumpkins, and the pumpkins made from old books. She even took some of the metal art from the other artist and incorporated it into a new piece. Another one made earrings, dream catchers and beautiful Indian corn decorations out of feathers and all kinds of things found in nature. They really are beautiful. I got a few of them for teacher gifts. Of course there is all the goat milk soap, lotion, candles, locally raised popcorn, handmade snacks and jams, and local honey. Just a lot of fun things! If you are in the area, make sure to make a point to make it. It is truly fun for all ages! And if you didn’t make it out but are wanting to check out some of the fun craft and gift ideas, the On the Farm Market will be open on Saturdays starting the Saturday before Thanksgiving. You should check it out at Eden Hills.


Of course the most important part of going to the pumpkin patch is carving the pumpkins. The boys did a good job, carving them mostly themselves this year. I love carving pumpkins, mostly because I love making pumpkins seeds!




Well, today is my birthday. It’s a big one, the big ole’ 4-0. I don’t mind birthdays, they are just another day usually. Which is why I should have suspected something when my husband started asking me to do something for my birthday!


He took me shopping for jeans! Of course they didn’t have any more in my size so I got a new shirt and a new sweatshirt. He got a pair of jeans. We are a fancy couple. He seemed pretty concerned about the time, which should have tipped me off. But no, I ignored it and went back to our bar to have a drink.


I walked in and everyone yelled happy birthday! I was surprised by that, just my friends from town. They then told me there was a present in the back room for me. Yeah,they surprised me. I couldn’t believe it. All my family and friends from all over were hiding back there! They all worked together and pulled it off.


My wonderful Aunt Bev made me this fun cake!


Mom made my favorite Red Cake!


They got me a great wine glass and lots of wine. They also had Fondue with all the fixings set up and it was delicious.


They stole hay bales from my barn and set up great decorations. I just loved it!


My best friend from high school was there!


My bestest buddy came, even though her house has been under water due to flooding.


These two I just don’t have words for. I truly am blessed in the friend department! I didn’t get a lot of pictures taken because I was having too much fun talking to everyone. I did Niece#1 in one.


My family and friends did a great job and I had the most fun I have had in long time.

Then today, was our homecoming kick off. Started with the Spirit Run.


Niece#4 and Landon came through first.


Then came Denton. He was loving this!


Niece#2 came next, she seemed to be missing most of the color.


Niece#3 was next. Having a ball with her friends.


Sister came next, I think she used her running partner as blocker for the color!


Finally Madelyn ran through. She wasn’t getting much color either.


Once everyone was done, they brought all the color back and had the final color blast. It was crazy.


These three were right in the middle!


Yup, perfectly colored!

Then we watched the Powder Puff games.


The freshman played the juniors and the freshman won.


The sophomores played the seniors and the sophomores won. That had Niece#3 playing against Niece#2. Niece#2 and the sophomores won. They also had the pork producers there making pork burger. So over all, I had a pretty darn good start to this fortieth year.



Day trips

Denton came home from school and told me his teacher had told him about the STEM Science Fair at Iowa State University. He is always mad at me because we never go anywhere. He’s  8 years old and never even been out of state! Who knew that was so important? So, since we were waiting on hay to dry, I took him.


There was a lot of really neat things to see and do. For those of you who, like me, don’t know, STEM stands for science, technology, engineering and mathematics. We got to see the plastics and metal 3D printers. It was quite interesting! We also got to check out a wide variety of other projects, from foods to robots. I will be honest, I think I had as much fun and found it as interesting as Denton did.


While we were in Ames, I took Denton to a few of the buildings I had classes in, and by the place I lived while I attended ISU. He really wanted to see Jack Trice Stadium, so we swung by and took a picture of him in front of the new South End Zone Entrance. It’s really something, I haven’t been to a game yet to see it.


We also found a Cy statue and had to get a picture of it.


Then probably the best part of the day for him, Buffalo Wild Wings! They do have delicious strawberry lemonades.

A few days after the STEM fair I had a good friend contact me with a question. Did I want to use their tickets to the ISU game on Saturday? Uh…YES!! How excited was I to tell Denton that he could actually go to a game?


I even got him to wear a Cyclone shirt (he thinks he is an Iowa Hawkeye fan, I am trying to convert him) and he thought this was pretty great!


We got to see Cy the mascot, and watch former coach Dan McCarney be inducted into the Hall of Fame, which was very neat! I even got to see a couple former players I knew from my time at Iowa State.


Our seats were by the North End Zone. This is the end the players enter from.


It’s a beautiful stadium and I love being able to go and share this with Denton. This shows a little of the South End Zone. When I was a student it was just a grassy hill.


The band was pretty impressive and Denton thought the whole thing was just pretty neat. He loved jumping up and giving the guys sitting around us high fives when ISU scored.


There’s the student section. They get pretty into it, and seem to have a blast, win or lose, over there. ISU did win this one and played pretty well for a change. Over all, I would say Denton can lay off me after these days out and about!



I Cubs

So instead of trying to get everyone an individual Christmas present, my Grandma Beavers get the family a skybox and tickets to our local Minor League baseball team the Iowa Cubs.


My boys love baseball and are always pretty excited to go.


We ended up with pretty good seats, right behind home plate.


The boys didn’t really move from here. They loved it.


Of course, their buddy got to go with them and that always makes everything better.


Most of the gang watching.


Madelyn was kept busy with the little girls. They seem to really like her! It’s nice to get together with my aunts, uncles, cousins, and their kids. We don’t do it as often as when we were kids, so it’s nice to have the chance to catch up.


I don’t know about everyone else, but one of mine ended up cashing out on the way home. Guess all that excitement was just to much!