A beautiful, crappy, rainy day Part 2

It is with a heavy heart that I post today. My prayers and sympathies are with the Urbandale and Des Moines Police Departments, and the families and friends that lost 2 selfless public servants this morning for absolutely no reason. To who ever did this unspeakable act, may God have mercy on your soul.

So I was telling you that Sister and Niece#4 and I had gone to Kalona to the sale. After we got done in town, we were starting to head for home and discussing where our turn was. We, for no reason, other than we had time, decided to take a different route home. About 2 miles up the road, while enjoying the scenery and the beautiful homes we came across the neatest looking little place. Well seeing as we were on a two lane road and pulling a trailer with a car behind us, we went up to the next road and turned around. We hoped there would be room in their driveway to get in and out.

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Yes, the place is called Sisters’ Garden & Bloom. We had to stop! Besides the fact that the sign caught our attention on our little sister adventure, the antiques!!

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This place is packed! We couldn’t believe the amount of things they had in these two old houses. It was unbelievable!

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This house was the original one on the homestead. It was breathtakingly beautiful inside and outside. I could live there easily.

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It had this amazing bay window in front and was just full of amazing old pieces.

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I wanted one of their signs. I thought this was a great name and they had signs all over.

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They had a great mix of old vintage pieces mixed with some new things and made into great décor.

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The nooks and crannies were all filled and I couldn’t tell if I was enjoying the antiques or the house more.

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They redid the banister with an old picket fence. What a great idea! They had pretty much left the rest of the house the was left basically the way it must have been years ago.

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Outside we found a building mad completely of old windows and doors. It would make an adorable green house!

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It was such a neat little building, also full of cute antiques.

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Then there was the whole other little house. Just as adorable as the first.

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It had a little loft and was full of new and used and remade and repurposed and fun. We spent a lot of time walking around and just looking. Sister found a couple first edition Charlie Brown books from 1968 and a picture that was just her. I found a shirt(new) but it was just kind of me and an old frame that is just what I have been looking. As we were checking out I saw that there were a couple cd’s laying on the counter. I asked her if that was the music that was playing. It was and she explained that the artist is a violinist named Genevieve from Des Moines. I bought a cd and should have bought all three of them. I am going to wear it out listening to it. If you get the chance to check out her work, I highly recommend it as well!

I have to say, if you are down around the area, you definitely should stop in a visit this great little shop on Highway 1. What treasure this area has tucked away on a back road. I am going to work harder at finding these out of the way places Iowa has hidden in plain sight.

A beautiful, crappy, rainy day

Title sounds a little odd right? Well we got rained out doing beans, and it didn’t appear to be letting up that day, so I was able to take a day off. I could have hung around home and done some work, but Sister had a much better idea.

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Yeah, we went to the sale barn. But not the usual sale barn. This one is in Kalona, Iowa. The trip down takes about 2 hours. We had the trailer with us to haul all the animals we were selling. She took her older chickens, some random chickens they had collected over the years, and Dash the goat. I took most of our rabbits, all the adult guinea pigs except Gizmo, the 3 (once baby now full grown) ducks, and the two roosters. First the sheep sold.

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Then a variety of breeds of goats. They were all sizes and all ages.

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Bucks, Does, Wethers, Does with Kids, all kinds. After the goats they sold a few pigs. We didn’t stay and watch them sell.

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We went for food. The sale barn has a café called the Lunchroom. Now most sale barns I have been to have pretty good food. This is definitely one of the best!

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Oh, yeah, we had a tag along. Niece#4 went along.

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After we ate the pigs were done so we headed to the other room where the eggs, rabbits, chickens, and really whatever else you could think of was to be sold. They had a ton of eggs! They went anywhere from $.50 to $1.00. The chickens, rabbits, and guinea pigs all sold fairly quickly and so we decided not to sit through the rest of the things to be sold.

We wanted to stop at the General Store up town. Now with a trailer everything becomes slightly more difficult, including parking. We had a walk back to the Main Street district. What a pretty little town.

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It’s kept up and really pretty. I love old buildings like this though. But there is also a peacefulness to this town that is refreshing.

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It is an Amish community and I love listening to the clip clop of the horses going down the street.

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They are such amazing animals. So well broke and calm.

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They even have very cute little parking garages.

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They had a renovation project in 2010 and have these beautiful quilt blocks on every corner.

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I was all set to take a picture of every single one. Then I realized how many there were. But they were so pretty!

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They have some beautiful restaurants that look like they might deserve a stop on another trip back. I think we are going to try to take Mom with us. She would enjoy this quaint little town a lot.

Once we were done looking around in town, we decided to head for home. As we headed out of town, we loaded the gps to tell us where our turn was. However, since it had been forever since Sister and I did much of anything together and we had time. We decided to take a different route. And that my friend is when the real fun happened! But, since that would make this the longest blog post ever, you better stop by tomorrow and see what we found!

Forty

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!

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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.

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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.

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My wonderful Aunt Bev made me this fun cake!

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Mom made my favorite Red Cake!

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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.

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

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My best friend from high school was there!

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

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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.

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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.

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Niece#4 and Landon came through first.

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Then came Denton. He was loving this!

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

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

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

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

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

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These three were right in the middle!

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Yup, perfectly colored!

Then we watched the Powder Puff games.

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The freshman played the juniors and the freshman won.

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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.

 

 

State Fair Again

So we went back to the fair again. This time we took the whole gang. Well, 3 of Sisters kids and my 3, Sister and BroInLaw, and Mom of course.

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The chicken barn was full of beauties, this skinny legged one was a favorite!

 

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Boys by the giant pumpkin!

 

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This is the Agricultural Building. Full of variety of associations and other groups having to do with ag.

 

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Mom and I getting our Selfie on!

 

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The Butter Cow is always a favorite of crowds. This year they had Star Trek figures also.
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My favorite exhibit, Bonsia Trees! This one is 95 years old!
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Niece#4 liked the plow horse made entirely of farm tools and parts.

 

 

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The whole crew!

 

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Chow time! Tenderloins are Landon’s favorites
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The Avenue of the Breeds is always one of our favorite stops!

 

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Kune kune pig

 

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Massive Elk

 

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Jacob’s lamb

 

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I don’t know what kind these tiny cows are, but cute!

 

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Sicilian African Donkey

 

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Fred, the big boar. 1155 pounds of pork!
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A Belgian, he’s a big dude.

 

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Denton seeing how close he is to as tall as the big horses.
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Learned something new! This is a flag display that is either new or we have missed. So we went to check it out. Apparently, each county in Iowa has their own flag, we found all three of ours. It’s a really pretty place.

 

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BIG SLIDE!! I didn’t get everyone in the picture, partly because they race to the bottom and I have to record it so we know who won. Landon won this year.

 

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Denton liked this tractor in the FFA Farm Tractor display.

 

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We stopped and caught a magic act while Mom and Sister did a little shopping.

 

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Yes, they got me on the Sky Glide. Other than a cool view, I don’t love it. I am more of a feet on the ground kind of girl, but I will pretty much do anything for my kids.
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It’s a terrifying way to end your day at the fair. Ok maybe I am being a little dramatic.

The State Fair is fun for everyone. If you want a snapshot of what Iowa has to offer, it’s there. They say Great Food, Great Fun, Great Friends. Yup Sums it up pretty good. Until next year!

After our exciting day…

Big Nephew and I did about the same thing we have been doing. Only we took the spades less and more tools for fixing fence and getting pastures, now fairly free of those pesky thistles, ready for cows. While that isn’t exciting work, we did see some beautiful places and find some interesting things.

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Empty nest
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Not and empty nest, after chopping down the thistle it was in, we rehomed it. Hopefully it was found.
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Fun trails, yes, there is a trail in there to our water gap.
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Pretty flowers/weeds
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Yellow ones

 

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Purple ones

 

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White ones
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The best find of all!

Sister and I went out early this morning and picked raspberries. It’s one of my favorite times, no kids or hubbys, just us talking and laughing. I don’t mind the scratches or the bugs because I get to just spend quiet time chatting about everything under the sun with her. Oh and the berries are delicious!

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Posey’s babies, Pheobe and Mr. T

Posey is a really good mother! We are so over the moon about Pheobe. She is exactly what we hoped to eventually breed and we accidentally got her! I am so happy for my Niece#3! And Mr. T (for Tank) is very handsome and stout! I think they have good lines in them!

A kind of exciting day.

Lately my days have kind of run together. They have been the same, sweat, hot, tired and repeat!

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Musk Thistles…grr

 

But yesterday started out much better! Katie finally called and their mare Sassy had her colt! Chevy is a big brother!

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Another Black and White!
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Such love!

It’s a boy with lots of white! I am so happy for Katie and if you would like to see more of Sassy and her new baby Silverado, check out more of Katie’s pictures on facebook.

The majority of the rest of the day went about like most of the rest. It was hot, we were sweating and then we were done. I went to Sisters house to drop Big Nephew off and heard a baby goat yelling fairly loudly. At first, Sister thought is was just Rue making noise. Then she realized that Rue wasn’t the one making all the noise.

Where was Posey?!

20160620_170030Yup, the wait is over! She finally showed us what she was hiding in there! We found her with one fairly big red headed buck. He was all dried off and eating. We noticed that she was still pushing and so after a while she laid down with her bottom in the corner. When Sister tried to move her out of the corner, we noticed one foot and a head. I went ahead and pulled the second baby. Can you believe it is finally a DOE! And she is black and white!! Just exactly what we are all trying for! Niece#3, well, all of them are very excited! Out of the 7 kids we had this year, 6 bucks and 1 doe! She’s a keeper for sure! Posey, although younger than you would usually like, is a very good mommy! I am so excited for them!

So you can see it was kind of an exciting day for all!

Oh beautiful days

I love beautiful days. My mood just soars. I am still slowly but surely working on the barn, in between the hoopla of the end of the school year. I think I have made more trips to the school this week than in the last month.

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Progress on the front room of the barn. I am basically done with it and now have plenty of room to get the mower in! I also added tubs under the rabbit cages to hopefully catch as much of the manure as possible. I am hoping it will work to keep it a little cleaner.

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The other side is also basically done. I can now get through to clean out the middle between part between the chicken coop and the goat pens and then I get to start on the chicken coop and goats pens. I am loving the new wheel barrow I got this year. I am using to haul the straw, hay and rabbit poop to the garden.

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All the stuff from the floor is now mulching my tomatoes. I have some weeding to do tomorrow, depending on the rain we are supposed to get tonight, but I am hoping I will have my peppers, egg plants, and cabbage all mulched with the rest.

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Speaking of gardening! I was thinning my radishes and look what I found! They aren’t real big but they are sure delicious! My rabbits are just loving the tops!

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Picnics are better with food from the garden. Although there weren’t a lot, we just had to enjoy the sunshine and make the most of it!

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The babies are growing so rapidly, they are moving around and eyes are opening. They are almost to the super cute stage!

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Ok, they are pretty stinking cute right now! While we still don’t have any goat babies yet, Sister called and wondered if there was any chance that the goats we bought earlier this spring could be bred? I didn’t think so, Jeremiah didn’t think so, but Posey is saying differently.

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Another pretty little udder! Niece#3’s dairy goat Phoenix didn’t get bred this year, so she is pretty excited that she is going to have babies. She is a little young and it must have been one of those freak through the fence deals. But we all think she is big enough to handle it and be ok. So no we are anxiously awaiting a few more babies.

My does should be due around the 31st, which is only 7 days from now. Not sure Button and Indi are going to be that long.

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I am getting impatient girls, let’s go!

Hope you are having a great week!