Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Oh happy day!

My niece (who moved to California about a year ago) is home for a week, and everyone is happy, happy, happy!!!  The horses are happy, the grandparents are happy, friends are happy, everyone is happy!  Poor girl is trying to fit all her family into basically 5 days, but she knows she is loved. :)  It did my heart good to be her paparazzi again today and get some pics of her with her horses.
(And bonus, her boyfriend is pretty awesome too!)

Monday, November 20, 2017

Have you...

hugged a goat today?  I highly recommend it! :)
Or, moved a freezer with your tractor?  LOL!

Rules by Cynthia Lord

This is my book club book for the month with my library helpers.  I would easily recommend this to teachers for a read aloud or for higher elementary & middle school readers.  It was really good and I can't wait to discuss at our book lunch.  The brother in the story is autistic.  It seems like a good way to help relate to families with autism in the family.

Summary from amazon.com:
This 2007 Newbery Honor Book is a humorous and heartwarming debut about feeling different and finding acceptance. Now in After Words paperback!

Twelve-year-old Catherine just wants a normal life. Which is near impossible when you have a brother with autism and a family that revolves around his disability. She's spent years trying to teach David the rules from "a peach is not a funny-looking apple" to "keep your pants on in public"---in order to head off David's embarrassing behaviors.
But the summer Catherine meets Jason, a surprising, new sort-of friend, and Kristi, the next-door friend she's always wished for, it's her own shocking behavior that turns everything upside down and forces her to ask: What is normal?

Sunday, November 19, 2017

Redneck Shelter

Here's the deal...the big goats don't use their shed at night.  They lay out on the ground.  Regardless.  Unless it's raining.  Then, they will use the shed.  Now, they won't let Kix (the baby goat) in the shed.  But, I wanted him to have a safe place, so I put the dog crate by a tree where they all lay and he started sleeping in it.  So then I thought, as it gets colder, how can I block the wind and make it warmer?
I tried first to wrap it in cardboard, didn't work.  The goats immediately started ripping at the cardboard and eating it! LOL!
So, I covered the holes with duct tape...
Put a board on the south side.

 Cardboard being destroyed...
Now, I needed to block wind on north side...I wanted to cover the duct tape so they didn't eat it off.  Enter another board...now how to connect?  Ratchet strap?  
Nope, in the end, I got another shorter board and connected all of them to make a box of protection around the crate.  I crawled in and no wind.  He should be as snug as a bug in a rug!  Extra straw was added but they all freaking ate it! I swear!  I can't win! LOL!
And there you have it, a redneck goat shelter! :)

The Rules of Magic by Alice Hoffman

I just could not get into this book.  It was my Book of the Month Club pick this month and I had high hopes.  It is the prequel to Practical Magic.  It has good reviews.  Maybe it was just me.  I couldn't connect with the characters.  I wasn't "invested" in the story.  I would pass on this one...

Summary from goodreads.com:
Find your magic

For the Owens family, love is a curse that began in 1620, when Maria Owens was charged with witchery for loving the wrong man.

Hundreds of years later, in New York City at the cusp of the sixties, when the whole world is about to change, Susanna Owens knows that her three children are dangerously unique. Difficult Franny, with skin as pale as milk and blood red hair, shy and beautiful Jet, who can read other people’s thoughts, and charismatic Vincent, who began looking for trouble on the day he could walk.

From the start Susanna sets down rules for her children: No walking in the moonlight, no red shoes, no wearing black, no cats, no crows, no candles, no books about magic. And most importantly, never, ever, fall in love. But when her children visit their Aunt Isabelle, in the small Massachusetts town where the Owens family has been blamed for everything that has ever gone wrong, they uncover family secrets and begin to understand the truth of who they are. Back in New York City each begins a risky journey as they try to escape the family curse.

The Owens children cannot escape love even if they try, just as they cannot escape the pains of the human heart. The two beautiful sisters will grow up to be the revered, and sometimes feared, aunts in Practical Magic, while Vincent, their beloved brother, will leave an unexpected legacy.

Tuesday, November 7, 2017

Wishtree by Katherine Applegate

This is an easy read - only 211 pages.  I really do like this author and I enjoyed this story.  My issue with it is that I thought it missed the opportunity to go a little deeper.  It has VERY high ratings and has multiple discussion/teaching moments in it if you are doing it as a read aloud for a classroom or with a child.  But it could have been so much more!

Summary from amazon.com:
The New York Times-bestselling story of kindness, friendship, and hope. 

Red is an oak tree who is many rings old. Red is the neighborhood "wishtree"―people write their wishes on pieces of cloth and tie them to Red's branches. Along with her crow friend Bongo and other animals who seek refuge in Red's hollows, this "wishtree" watches over the neighborhood.
You might say Red has seen it all. Until a new family moves in. Not everyone is welcoming, and Red's experiences as a wishtree are more important than ever.
Funny, deep, warm, and nuanced, Wishtree is Newbery Medalist and New York Times–bestselling author Katherine Applegate at her very best―writing from the heart, and from a completely unexpected point of view.
This book has Common Core connections.

Sunday, November 5, 2017


Today was a hay run day!  It's almost time for daily hay and our hay supply comes from my parent's farm in Beebe.  So...we had to run while we could. 
I absolutely love the beauty at my parent's place... 

We made our quick trip and made it home with no rain to get the hay into the barn!

Almost as soon as we were stopped, we were surrounded by chickens and donkeys! I'm sure if the gate had been open, the goats would have inspected too! LOL!
Stacked and ready...
Elly May says, "Wait!  I think you missed some!"
No really, let me get this for you! 
After dealing with hay, we had a disappointing bee inspection...lots of ants and hive beetles.  Going to the bee store tomorrow to trouble shoot!
 Updates to come...