Posts Tagged Halloween

2 More Days!

28 October 2009
Must……stay………………awake………………………….zzzzzzzzzzzzz… I tell you what — I’m ready to put my feet up, lay my head against something, ice my wounded leg, have a good deep back massage, and just think about NOTHING.  I don’t want to read. I don’t want to browse the internet. I don’t even want to sit by a fire with a cup of hot cocoa.  No. I just want to close my eyes and drift off into peaceful sleep! That, however, isn’t going to happen simply because I know I’ll lay in bed, thinking about everything that I did today, what I need to do tomorrow, and what still needs to happen for Friday.
Productive, non-stop, and creative describe today perfectly.  I woke early to the sound of Boots and Jax howling and baying in the kitchen. Worried they’d wake EG before she was ready, I jumped out of bed, and ran to the other side of the house…looking out the glass door in the kitchen I saw three deer meandering along the side of the house, oblivious to the beagle who was about to pop a vocal cord because of their presence!  I quickly silenced the dogs, but knew that getting back to sleep would be impossible, so I just decided to go ahead and get my day started!
I love that on my way to feed the horses every morning, I have to drive across our dam — inevitably the view is just magnificent!!!!!

It was definitely the coldest morning we’ve had this month…

But, man, is this beautiful!

After picking up Victor and Lorena, Ellie Graye and I dropped them off at the house and headed to the Vet’s office to get paperwork printed up so I could actually SEE what my charges were.  I swear, the amount I pay them each month is more than I ever paid for rent in Los Angeles!!!! It’s INSANE — and not because they charge an arm and a leg, but because my damn animals are just constantly having issues…
As I stood there at the front desk going over all the charts with Jennifer, Leah took Ellie Graye to the back (I’m assuming to see animals or vets or something).  I was able to concentrate on what I was doing, and EG was entertained!  Jennifer had to remind me what several visits were…
ME: “What the heck did Jax come in for on September 28?!?!?”
JENNIFER: “Um. Let’s see. Well, the chart says Dr. Fisher checked her tail after you slammed it in the hatchback of your car.”
ME: “Oh. Right. That.”
ME: “But this can’t be right – it’s only a couple days earlier.”
JENNIFER: “Yeah, that was when Jax got her stitches in her front leg after chasing the deer a mile and a half up the road.”
ME: “What’s THIS???”
JENNIFER: “That? That’s Boots’ monthly anal gland infection.”
Seriously, Dr. Fisher’s kids must have a herd of horses by now – God knows I’ve given him enough money to pay for at least 10!  Anyway, a few minutes later, Leah came back with Ellie Graye, and we finished up.  As I picked my darling little girl up, I noticed a dark, chocolate looking thing in her hand.
“What’s THIS, Leah? A chocolate covered cookie???? Ellie’s never had a cookie, let alone chocolate!!!”
I looked at my 15 month old, chocolate melting all over her hands and jacket, and thought , “What the heck.”
“Put it in your mouth, Graye.”
It took a second for her to register the taste and then a HUGE smile broke out on her face, her eyes lit up, and she started signing “Thank you, thank you.”  All the while, she held that chocolate cookie up to her lips.  It was one of those genuinely happy moments that children experience from the simplest things!  All of us in the lobby burst into laughter.  She didn’t finish the cookie.  She took a bite or two, then handed it back to me and asked for water…which I was beyond happy about!  Ellie’s first chocolate cookie is definitely a memory that I’ll keep forever.
Frank seems to be doing much better.  The swelling is still there, but will go away soon, I’m sure.  At least he seems like he’s putting on weight, is moving better, and is in much better spirits…in fact, his “hand walks” are more like “body walks” – it takes my entire body to keep him in check.  He’s so freaking hyper right now!  If I let him, he’d tear around on the lunge line like a mad man!
The rest of the day was spent baking and decorating and working on things that needed to get done…including decorating the entry to our driveway…
Left side….

Right Side…

Victor got into the spirit of things – he brought a few bales of hay to the entry way, decorated them with the rest of our homegrown pumpkins, and even created his own little scary dead guy and hung him from a tree!  It was quite a surprise to see him getting so creative!

Victor’s creation…
In the kitchen, I managed to make the Skull Ice Forms (they’re so freaking cool), Candy Apple Cakes (with apples from our neighbors’ trees), Rosemary Marinated Mozzarella bites, Plain Scones, Orange Cranberry Scones, Stewed Beef Phyllo Rolls, and Deer Park Farms Berry Cheesecake Bars (with my homemade blackberry-syrah jam and blueberries from the garden).  I think we might have enough food. Just MAYBE.

Ok, so fine, I stole a corner of the Cheesecake Bars!

Plain scones (I’ll serve with Blackberry Jam and Cream) and Candy Apple Cakes

Candy Apple Cakes finished with Homemade Caramel
After taking Lorena and Victor home, Ellie took a long bath and then we played in the kitchen while we waited for daddy to arrive from the airport.  Yep, Jeffrey is be able to work from here the rest of the week, so we’ll have lots of family time over the next few days!  It’s so incredibly nice to have him around!
When I say “long bath,” I mean an HOUR. Seriously, this child loves water

Trying to climb into her chair by herself!

Daddy rocking and spending time with his baby girl before going to sleep…

Tomorrow will be another full day of preparations…I’m so excited (is there something wrong with me that I LOVE this stuff????).  TWO MORE DAYS!!!!!!


27 October 2009
When I think back on the hours that made up today, I take a deep breath and calmly repeat, “BREATHE, DAMN IT!!!!! BREATHE!” I try again…”CALM THE HELL DOWN! BREATHE!”  I try once more, fail again, and then just say, “Aww, screw it. At least it’s over.”  Here’s the thing.  I realize that my path will not always be the path that others agree with, approve of, or can even tolerate.  But, put that mushy stuff aside for two seconds and let me vent: I freaking HATE the feeling that boils up inside me when someone questions the dedication that I have to my daughter…  “Be sure she’s not just an item on your to do list” was the general statement.  A TO-DO list?!?!? MY little girl?!?! ARE YOU FREAKING KIDDING ME!?!?  While I understand that this person has years of “experience” with children, I was so hurt by the assumption that because I have chosen to live a life that is fulfilling to both Ellie Graye and me, that I’m putting her in the fast lane.  I live on a farm – HELLO!  I love growing, learning, and developing the person I am, the mother I am…but the manner in which the message was delivered was just plain hurtful.  You can rock and sing your child to sleep every night, but the next morning destroy any sense of security, love, stability and safety in one simple sentence.  THAT my friends is the parenting insight I’m taking with me from today.  I hope to process this in a manner that will stay with me…because, boy, oh boy, it SUCKS to be on the other side of hurtful words.
Despite the yucky feeling that seemed to have taken up residence in my belly for the day, it was awesome to see so many of my friends speak up in the discussion on “sleep training” (that’s what instigated the whole commotion in the first place).  Many of the Facebook moms put in their two cents, and, while not all of our choices for feeding, sleeping, and child-rearing have been the same, the openness that everyone showed was really astounding.   The “advice” that came in the form of their own personal experiences was such a breath of fresh air, and there seemed to be a general feeling of camaraderie that I’m not sure I had yet felt with other mothers.   Whatever our weaknesses in parenting are (which I’m sure there are plenty), there is strength together – thank you, friends, for encouraging me to not second guess myself, to listen to my own heart, and to stay strong on the path I have chosen!
Phew. That’s done.  NOW I can take a deep breath.  That’s the beauty of writing, isn’t it!  It’s so cleansing!
Frank is doing better today, I think.  He’s urinating regularly, eating regularly, and drinking regularly.  His manure is still funky, and his legs, sheath and belly still swollen, but those would logically be the last to get better.  We’ve got no idea what it is, so I’m just hoping for the best.
They’re smaller than they were!

The edema under his belly

A closer look

The rain kept me inside most of the day, but I still went out to give Frankie his medicine, and do a once-over to be sure he hadn’t taken a turn for the worse.  Since it was pouring rain, I decided that it’d be fine to check him in his stall…what I failed to think through was that Avdou does NOT like it when I give Frank attention and not him…so, as I was bending down feeling Frank’s hind legs, Avdou took a good, strong bite of his ass. Frank went flying, I went flying, and Avdou, after seeing the look in my eye, went flying.  Frank, being the horse that he is, attempted to avoid stepping on me, and while he didn’t crush me beneath his feet, he did manage to nail my knee and my thigh with some part of his body.  No idea what body part hit what, but lord almighty, I’ve got bruises everywhere and a big ol’ lump on my head that just appeared out of no where! Oh, the joys of farm life!
SOOOOOOO…just because I didn’t have enough going on today, I continued preparing for Friday’s Halloween party.  I added to the decorations in the living room, made ID tags for appetizers, made the ID tag holders (which are mighty creative, if I do say so myself), made the bread bowls for Jeffrey’s Hannibal Lecter heads, prepped the blackberry/thyme juice for the margaritas, and racked my brain to figure out what else to make for hor d’oeuvres!

Infusing the vodka with Jalepeno Peppers for the SexyWoman Punch

Hannibal Lecter Bread Bowls

Straining blackberries for the Blackberry-Thyme Margaritas

My clever name tag holders 
(plastic skeleton hands from Dollar Tree, wine corks from our bar)

So, now it’s late, and I’m tired, and tomorrow I have more of the same…and in the words of Anne Shirley, “Tomorrow is always fresh and new with no mistakes in it.”  *boy, I quote her more than I quote the Bible!* 

Ellie told me she wanted to go swimming a second time today…
she even went and got her swim suit!!!
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