Thursday, December 31, 2020

Skywatch Friday

Welcome to this Skywatch Friday post!  Here is a sunrise scene which lasted for only a few minutes then it disappeared leaving only gray clouds. 

To see more sky photos go HERE.


Seven inches of snow fell Tuesday afternoon.  Because there was little wind the snow didn't blow into drifts which was good.  It meant my husband didn't need to get his tractor-mounted snow blower out of the shed.  Here's a few photos from yesterday morning.

When I headed out for chores yesterday morning the temperature was a nearly-balmy 29 degrees.  Not too hard to take.  Usually after a snow we have lots of wind and very cold temps.

Happy New Year's Eve!
Be safe!

Wednesday, December 30, 2020

Calf & Sunrises

Here's my newest little calf friend.  He's about a week old.  He drinks his milk with much enthusiasm, which makes my calf-feeding job so much easier.  And, it means he's healthy. 
Each morning while doing calf chores, I also keep an eye on the sunrise.  If it's a good one I'll try to get pictures of it, of course.  It seems like the blah sunrises generally outnumber the photo-worthy ones.

Here's a sunrise that broke through the clouds for a few minutes then disappeared again. 
Before starting to blog I rarely paid attention to sunrises and sunsets, much less took photos of them.

Enjoy your day before New Year's Eve!
Stay safe and well.

Tuesday, December 29, 2020

Striped Field

Two weeks ago, this is what our first snow looked like in the fields.  Now, more snow is being forecast for tomorrow and the next day. 

As I mentioned yesterday, we did have a family gathering here on the day after Christmas.  Our four kids and their three spouses and six grandchildren were here.  Its getting to be a house full.  I made lasagna and corn and they brought various hot dishes and Christmas goodies. 

Our grandchildren are now aged five through ten.  All growing like weeds, as used to be said back when I was a growing kid.  It was nice enough that they could play outdoors and they also spent some time up in the haymow---always an intriguing place.  I think they had a good time.

I'm trying to remember what it was like to be in growing mode like our grandchildren are.  I can recall shoes getting tighter and pants getting shorter.  I don't think we really feel the growing going on, though.  We just feel the results of growing. 

It was so nice to see everyone.  No one had even a cold so that was good.  We'll hope there was no Covid lurking in anyone.  

Enjoy your Tuesday!
I hope you stay safe and well.  


Monday, December 28, 2020

Star Bread

Our dear daughter who lives four hours away arrived on Christmas day in preparation for our family gathering on Saturday. 
She brought ingredients to make this lovely and delicious star bread with raspberry and rhubarb jam inside.  She found the recipe in "Taste of Home" magazine.  Daughter has really taken to baking the past few years.  She likes to sew, too---she made most of the gifts she gave to her nieces and nephews.  Now if only she could find a husband or if only he could find her!

May you have gentle, restful day.  That's what I'm hoping for here, too.
Stay safe and well.

Sunday, December 27, 2020

Saturday, December 26, 2020

Second Christmas


Happy Second Christmas!  It really is a thing (and I have blogged about it in the past).  I think it might be a German tradition to celebrate Christmas also on December 26th.  My husband's family is German and it was his grandmother who always hosted the Second Christmas gathering.  A wonderful array of food was made by Grandma and brought in by the rest of us and we all received gifts from her that day, also.  She was quite a Grandma.  She's been gone many years now and our family's Second Christmas tradition has fallen away. 

Enjoy your day!
Hopefully it will be restful.

Friday, December 25, 2020

Christmas Day

Wishing you all the best on this joyous holiday! 

Thursday, December 24, 2020

Skywatch Christmas

Merry Christmas to all who celebrate it!

Here's a sunset as seen from our farm in Iowa, USA. 

To see more sky photos, visit


Christmas Eve

A blessed Christmas Eve to you all. 

I know Jesus wasn't born on Christmas Eve, but I just like this nativity picture.

Wednesday, December 23, 2020

Merry Christmas Week


I hope you are having a great Christmas week.  Our kids and grandkids will all be here on Saturday.  They want to come despite Covid.  They live a couple hours away, so no planes or trains involved.  Hopefully, all will be fine and dandy.  The biggest question is will I be ready for company, meaning will the house be ready and the food prepared.  I will try my best.

Have a fabulous day!
Stay well! 

Tuesday, December 22, 2020

Frosty Branches

Sunday morning I got home from church just in time to get a photo of the frost before it was completely gone.  (That bird seems to have strayed from the flock.  I think it's a starling.)

We attend a Lutheran church out in the country about four miles from our farm.  The current mask rule is that we wear them until we get seated in the pew and then again on our way out of church.  We're supposed to social distance, too.  There is much less standing around visiting after the service.  We are trying to behave.

Yesterday was the winter solstice.  Hurray for days getting longer!  I'm ready for that.

Take care and may you stay well.

Monday, December 21, 2020

Wonderful Life

Have you watched this movie yet this Christmas season?  I haven't, but would like to. 

The movie, "It's A Wonderful Life" is what it is, of course.  I have it on DVD so could watch it at any time.  We do not yet subscribe to a streaming service.  Our kids gave us a smart TV for Christmas last year.  We used the free service, Disney Plus, for awhile, but the last time I tried to use it it asked for a password.  Maybe that means it's not free anymore.  Oh, well, it's still a wonderful life anyway!    

Have a great Monday!

Stay well and safe!

Sunday, December 20, 2020

Saturday, December 19, 2020


Just a random shot of some machinery.  On the left is half of a drag, center is a round bale mover, and on the right is half of a hay rake.   
My husband made the bale mover.  He didn't make the running gear, but he assembled the top part that holds the bales.

Can you spot the cat?  I believe it's Neil Page.  He can be found all over the farmstead at any time of day

Have a pleasant Saturday!

Finish up that Christmas shopping! (Note to self)

Friday, December 18, 2020

Skywatch Friday

 Sunset clouds seen at our farm in Iowa, USA.

Thank you for stopping by!

Visit Skywatch Friday to see many more sky shots. 

Thursday, December 17, 2020

Vintage Christmas Scenes

I found these vintage Christmas scenes on a free site.  Go ahead and copy them if you wish. 

One of my friends collects Nativity sets.  She has over 100 and displays half of them each Christmas season.  She and her husband travel quite a bit so she has sets from other parts of the country and the world.  They are beautiful!

Wednesday, December 16, 2020


 Our dog Buster shares a moment with a calf.
Buster died five years ago at age fourteen.  He was an all-around great dog, good-natured and always ready to help with cattle or go on a flower-hunting walk with me.

While we had Buster we also had another Aussie Shepherd named Betsy.  She lived to work with the cattle; it was her main focus.

The dog we have now is offspring of Betsy and the neighbor's Yellow Lab.  Lefty is a wonderful dog, but has no interest in the cattle.  His coloring is blotchy gray and black; he might be a one-of-a-kind.

Have a nice Wednesday!
Stay safe and well!

Tuesday, December 15, 2020

Hello Tuesday

This is not a very exciting photo---I'm scraping the bottom of the December photo barrel.  It's one I took that day I went to the Amish. 
I just got done reading Pat's lovely Christmas post on her blog, "Mille Fiori Favoriti".  (Click HERE to go there if you wish.)  She includes photos of Christmas at her home and also the true meaning of Christmas, the birth of Jesus Christ.  I just thought it was a very nice post.  

Its kind of cold here.  Just kind of.  But, enough to make me glad to get back in the house after feeding calves.  They never seem to mind the cold weather and actually stay healthier in the winter.  

It's Monday evening as I write this.  My husband is still in the barn.  There's a taste of summer bubbling on the stove---sweet corn from our freezer.  It is so yummy!

Have a great Tuesday!

Stay healthy and safe!

Monday, December 14, 2020

We had a little snow on Saturday, leaving us with striped fields. 
I don't mind getting snow as long as it's not too much and as long as temperatures don't plunge to below zero.  And, not a lot of wind is fine with me.  In the winter, wind can turn a nice day to miserable.

You are surely done with your Christmas shopping.  I am not.  I did some of it online on Saturday and may have to make a trip to town this coming week.  Fleet Farm keeps sending sale fliers so I'll probably go there and look around for gifts for the grandkids.  Yes, I am always slow at getting Christmas shopping done.  Its a holiday tradition for me!

Today, I wish you no wind!
Stay warm and well!

Sunday, December 13, 2020

Saturday, December 12, 2020

Oak Tree

As I headed to the Amish the other day I kept my eyes open for an oak tree to photograph.  Finally found one on the edge of the river woods.  It was too far away to get a close shot. 

I'm not sure what kind of oak it is, but it is one that holds on to its leaves.  This made me remember when I was a kid and Dad would take my sister and me for walks in the Wapsipinicon River woods.  He would point out the various trees, like hackberry, maple, oak, ash, and hickory.  Usually, he would stop and skip stones in the river, too.  Fun little adventures of the past, carried away by the winds of time.

Have a safe and healthy Saturday!
Remember a past adventure!

Friday, December 11, 2020

Skywatch Friday

Welcome to our farm in Iowa, USA.  This is a sunset scene. 

If you'd like to see other sky photos, click HERE.

Thursday, December 10, 2020


 Yesterday morning the water spigot in the milkhouse broke.  That sent me to a nearby town to get a new one.  I needed to go to the Amish bulk store to get oatmeal, too.  While leaving there I saw this Amish farmer headed to his field to spread manure.  (It's ok to take pictures of them as long as you don't get their faces in a photo.)
When I got home I found my husband working under his manure spreader, replacing the parts called hammers.  It took him all afternoon.

Hopefully, he doesn't have a rule about not getting his shoes in a photo!

Have a great day!
Stay safe and well.

Wednesday, December 9, 2020


We milk Holsteins.  Here's a few of them lounging in the early morning light. 
Because we have Holsteins I'm a pushover for Holstein greeting cards.  The Christmas card below is from Leanin' Tree and is the artwork of Geoff Allen, licensed by Levison Design.  It is my main card to send this Christmas.  

Have a wonderful Day!

Tuesday, December 8, 2020

More Transistor Chatter

 Yesterday I talked about the transistor radio I had when I was a kid.  Usually, I put this radio to use when I was doing laundry on Saturdays.  It was just me and the wringer washer down there in the basement, so I could listen to whatever I wanted.  Usually it was a Top-40 station.  One song I really liked was "Brandy (You're A Fine Girl)", by the band Looking Glass.  Listen to it HERE.  

As I put wet laundry through the wringer, I imagined being Brandy, in that city by the sea, loving a sailor who loved the sea most of all.  That's why I liked the told a story my imagination could hum to.

Another time I used the radio was when I was walking beans.  That means I was walking through the soybean field pulling weeds, carrying my radio, and getting a marvelous tan or sunburn.  A few songs I remember from out in the field were, "ABC 123" by the Jackson 5, "Indian Lake" by the Cowsills, "Seasons In the Sun" by Terry Jacks, "Bridge Over Troubled Water" by Simon & Garfunkel, "Colour My World" by Chicago, and lots of Beach Boys songs.

Sometimes at night I would see what faraway stations the radio could pick up.  Little Rock, Arkansas, was always there, and sometimes WGN, Chicago.  At times, I could hear a foreign language station, but I never figured out where it was coming from.

I'm sure many, many people recall having a transistor radio back in the 60's and 70's.  It was a fun time for me and my trusty transistor, that's for certain.

Have a great day!

Remember something fun from your childhood.

Monday, December 7, 2020

Transistor Radios

Today the subject is transistor radios.  I received my first one when I was ten, for Christmas from my parents.  I wanted to be like other kids who listened to their radios on the school bus, holding their radios up to the window to get better reception.  

This photo does not show my radio; sadly I do not have it anymore.  Wish I did.  It was a Magnavox and I believe it played only AM stations. 
When I first got the radio, my sister and I would play a game with it.  We would ask a question and then turn on the radio to get the answer.  It gave us lots of laughs.

On another Christmas, my sister and I each received one of the round radios below.  I wish I still had this one, too.  It was a Panasonic.  Mine was blue and my sister's was yellow.  

More on the radio subject tomorrow.

Sunday, December 6, 2020

Saturday, December 5, 2020


Good morning!  Happy Saturday! 

When I was a kid, Saturdays were for household chores (I would do the family laundry with our wringer washing machine) or going shopping. 

When my own kids were young, every Saturday was taken up with school sports, football, volleyball, basketball, soccer, softball, and track.  It really kept us on the run.  When possible, we would go shopping, usually for clothes.  How well I recall spending time in dressing rooms, usually at Penney's....we liked their Arizona brand clothing and jeans.  

In comparison, Saturdays now are rather dull and boring with nowhere we need to go.  But, I really don't mind.  I enjoy the peace.  

I hope you have a great Saturday, whether its busy or peaceful.

Stay safe and well, too!

Friday, December 4, 2020

Skywatch Friday

Welcome to Skywatch Friday here at our farm in Iowa, USA.  This is from last night's sunset, after the sun had gone down.
If you wish to see more sky photos, click HERE to visit the Skywatch Friday website.

Have a great skywatchin' day!

Stay safe and well!

Thursday, December 3, 2020

Beaver Moon

 Here's my shot of the full Beaver Moon which happened early Monday morning.  I took this photo at about 7:30 a.m.

Here's a definition of Beaver Moon:  "The November full moon is known as the Beaver Moon.  This was the time to set traps before the swamps froze to ensure a good supply of furs for the winter.   A different interpretation is that this is the time beavers would be most active in the preparation for winter."

When my dad was young, he trapped raccoon, beaver, muskrat, mink, and whatever else I don't know.  I remember seeing a picture of him in front of a wall covered in pelts.  I doubt that much trapping goes on anymore, but I could be wrong.  I don't think there's as many animals around as there used to be.

(After I used italics above then there is this white surrounding the text.  I can't seem to get rid of it.)

Have a great day!

Stay safe and well! 

Wednesday, December 2, 2020


Yesterday I decided to zoom in on the two windmill towers that still exist within sight of our farm.  (You can click on the pictures to enlarge them.) 

This first windmill (or wind engine as stated on Wikipedia) is about a half-mile away.  This type of windmill was invented in 1854 and was used mostly for pumping water from wells.  I remember years ago there was a cement cattle tank next to this windmill.
In this second photo there is a windmill tower with no blades remaining.  It's over a mile away.  It is a three-legged tower.  The one in the first photo has the usual four legs.  Both towers have stood for many years and the one below even survived a tornado in 2008.
On the farm where I grew up, we had a windmill tower with no blades.  Next to it was a cement cattle tank where my siblings and I would swim (we had no cattle then).

I've heard stories about people who used to climb windmills, mostly for the sake of repairs.  Teenage boys, however, would climb windmills for fun.  One of those crazy boys was blown off the top of a windmill and landed in a haystack.  Quite a stunt!

Have a winderful day!
Stay safe and well!

Tuesday, December 1, 2020

Calf Feeding

 This is so exciting, I know, but I am showing you the bottles I use to feed our youngest calves.  Each bottle holds 3 quarts.  Yes, calves drink that much at each feeding.  That's 6 quarts a day or a gallon and a half.  Gives me a stomach ache just thinking about it.
I can carry two pails with 3 bottles each.  Four is too heavy.  
We've read that it's good for calves to suck, it helps their whole system.  
Right now I'm feeding 22 calves on the bottle.  Four of those are being weaned.  I can't wait!  They are so big and boisterous now that they knock their bottles out of the holders.  They get a bottle of water in the morning now instead of milk.  This ends my little tutorial about calf feeding.

Happy December to you!
Have a great day!

Monday, November 30, 2020

Beaver Moon & Cats

Yesterday was cold with the wind howling all afternoon.  In the evening while I was outdoors feeding calves, a bright almost-full moon made its appearance.  (This is not a very good photo.) The moon will be full early tomorrow (Monday) morning.  It's called the Beaver full moon due to this being the time that beavers enter their lodges for the winter.  I don't blame them!
While I carry bottles into the calf building the cats wait patiently for their turn to get some warm milk.  We have around 20 cats I would guess.  These two are a pretty orange and white in the daylight.  (Another not very good photo.)

Wishing you a great day to end November! 

Stay safe, warm, and well!

Sunday, November 29, 2020