September 2016: Country Fair Blog Party

Welcome to the September 2016 Country Fair Blog Party! Thank you for joining us in another fun filled month of linking-up. At the Country Fair you will find an array of topics to learn about, recipes to enjoy and projects to try.

Here are my Purple Ribbon Winners from the September Link-up:

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Learning As I Go – Campfire Cinnamon Bites

These bites are not hard, not healthy, but oh so delicious!  The edges/outside gets crispy while the inside stay warm and tender cooked!  You can drizzle these with the icing from the cinnamon roll tube, toss in cinnamon & sugar, powdered sugar, or just eat plain!  And of course, if you’re not a camper, you could easily make these on your stove top!  I’m sure they would be just as tasty!!” – Katy

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freshcornchowder

Farm Girl Cook’n – Fresh Summer Corn Chowder

In Iowa, the corn state, it is totally appropriate to have a supper of only fresh corn on the cob this time of year; salty, golden nuggets dripping in butter.  Nothing else, well maybe some fresh tomatoes and a slice of bread, but it is the main course.  Yes, our blood sugar is probably screaming from the overdose of carbs, but what a way to go!” – Mary

Just like a local Country Fair, we have friends, food, family, farming, animals, crafts, cooking and comedy!

Be sure and check the link to this month’s blog party to see what great blogs link up. If you are a blogger, then please link up to three of your posts. It does not have to be new, just one you love or one that you want to share.

Blessings to you,
Laurie – Country Link

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www.countrylinked.wordpress.com

Be sure and check out my lovely co-hosts blogs!

Jan of Tip Garden  Nicole of Tales of a Kansas Farm Mom  Val of Corn, Beans, Kids and Pigs

June Country Fair Blog Party

Welcome to the June 2016 Country Fair Blog Party! Thank you for joining us in another fun filled month of linking-up. Please take a minute to look over all of the great linkups from May. There were an array of topics to learn about, recipes to enjoy and projects to try.

Here are my Purple Ribbon Winners from all of the great posts:

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Green Grass Girl – The Tallgrass Prairie and Looking for Beauty

I love traveling to these gorgeous locations, but I think it’s good for me to live my day-to-day life in the humble prairie. Why? Because the prairie teaches me to look for beauty in the here and now—to hunt for wildflowers amid otherwise barren landscapes and to notice unique surprises along my ordinary path. They are there! But I have to look for them.” – Rachel

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Pumpkin Spice Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting / www.delightfulrepast.com

Delightful Repast: Pumpkin Spice Cupcakes – Cream Cheese Frosting

Of course, this one seems positively autumnal, and it is spring. But I had a special unseasonal request for my pumpkin spice cupcakes.” – Jean

Just like a local Country Fair, we have friends, food, family, farming, animals, crafts, cooking and comedy!

Be sure and check the link to this month’s blog party to see what great blogs link up. If you are a blogger, then please link up to three of your posts. It does not have to be new, just one you love or one that you want to share.

Blessings to you,
Laurie – Country Link

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www.countrylinked.wordpress.com

Be sure and check out my lovely co-hosts blogs!

Jan of Tip Garden  Nicole of Tales of a Kansas Farm Mom  Val of Corn, Beans, Kids and Pigs

Mama’s Journal – Making the Grade

Its been 13 years since I last interviewed for a job. Thirteen years. Saying that out loud really hits home.

It was the spring of 2003 and a nonprofit was looking for an Executive Director. I was encouraged by several, including my husband, to apply for the job. I remember thinking that I was probably not going to get the job, but felt I had most of the attributes that they were looking for. I was then prepared a few days later when I got the call that they were going to go with someone else.

Sure, okay, no big deal. I was pregnant at the time and was happy working at the school as a Para. A few days after that, I received another call that their first choice decided not to take the job and they would like to offer it to me. Really?! So with that second phone call I was fully employed outside of the home for three years. That my friends was my last interview, last paycheck and last time I had to account for my time to someone else.

This morning I began thinking again about jobs, employment and making the grade. I guess in one way or another we all have our jobs that we do or are really good at. I could list the countless jobs that I do daily, weekly, monthly and seasonally. Some I am much better at than others; like being a mama. I think I have a pretty good handle on that job. Splitting fire wood, not so much. I have the strength, but a terrible aim. (We had to get a new axe handle because of me.)

What about employment? Are we destined to be employed and answer to “The Man”. I guess at the end of the day we want to be appreciated, receive a fair wage and feel confident that what we are doing is good for our family and our country. I just want to know that who ever is my “boss” for the day, that I have the necessary clothing, food and fuel to do the job that they want me to do. Take a day last week when I had to go to town and then rush home because I forgot to wash a certain basketball uniform that was needed by 5:30 that evening. (Don’t worry, I got it washed in time for him to play his game.)

How about making the grade? We are weaning calves this weekend and they have to make the grade or they will be sold at the sale barn. Now that does not mean that they are not good calves and will not produce a quality product. It just means that they did not have everything that we are looking for when we consider who will be replacement heifers and who will be bulls. So we weed through them by looking at their appearance, checking their personality/disposition, looking at their genetics and watching them walk. (The walk is very important.) We are looking to see if they will pass and make the grade for the job we are needing them to do.

In life are we really doing the jobs that we are to do? Are we showing up and being held accountable by someone, either ourselves or an employer? Do we make the grade not just once but every single day?

Those are questions we each have to answer for our selves. When we do, will we like the answers?

Blessings to you,
Laurie – Country Link

 

April Country Fair Blog Party

Country Fair Blog Party by Country LINKed Welcome to the April Country Fair Blog Party ! We are so happy that you are here. Please take a minute to look over all of the great linkups from the March linkup. We had everything from recipes, to craft projects, to how to buy a bull, to fitness tips. You find it all at the Country Fair!

Here are my Purple Ribbon Winners from the March Country Fair:

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Vickie’s Kitchen and Garden – Chocolate Gravy

Growing up in a family from the South, Chocolate Gravy was a staple in our diet at least once a week.   It was our Saturday morning breakfast.   While other kids were begging for waffles, we were begging for Chocolate Gravy!” – Vickie

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10 Easy Seedling Starters. Are you starting your seeds this season before they go in the ground? check out these 10 ideas for easy seedling starters.

Little Blog on the Homestead – 10 Easy Seedling Starters

When it comes to my seedling starters I prefer options that I can make or reuse rather than buying those plastic seedling starters from the store.” – Nicole

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Dirt Under My Fingernails – By the People

 “To be twelve is to be old enough not just to learn historical facts, but to begin to feel a sense of history, to appreciate the past and compare it to the present.  To touch and visit our landmarks and monuments; to meet, even briefly, those who represent us and govern our country, is to become a participant in our nation, not a bystander, and thus to help bear the burden of the past and future.” – Julie

Just like a local Country Fair, we have friends, food, family, farming, animals, crafts, cooking and comedy!

Be sure and check the link to this month’s blog party to see what great blogs link up. If you are a blogger, then please link up to three of your posts. It does not have to be new, just one you love or one that you want to share.

Blessings to you,
Laurie – Country Link

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www.countrylinked.wordpress.com

Be sure and check out my lovely co-hosts blogs!

Jan of Tip Garden  Nicole of Tales of a Kansas Farm Mom  Val of Corn, Beans, Kids and Pigs

Mama’s Journal – Mud

Today the sun is shinning, the birds are singing, the trees are budding, the grass is greening up and we are in the season of mud. Yes, there is a mud season in Missouri. We don’t just have Winter, Spring, Summer and Fall, we also have Mud.

Now mud can mean many different things. It can mean that the gravel road you live on will not dry out so you have to pad your departure time and plan your attire on wither or not you can show up with mud on your hem. It can be the time of year where political campaigns slinging “mud” back and forth so much that you can’t tell which way is up or who to cast your vote for on Primary Day. Kids love mud season because that is when they can splash in the mud puddles and get their cloths and each other muddy. Mud is also the season when farmers start itching to get in the fields because mud means that the ground temperature is just about right to start putting seed in the ground.

Above all else, mud means that we will be working calves and weaning them from their mama’s. Weaning happens about the same time every year, give or take a few days, and we are always in mud season. This year will be no different.

Now the lots where we bring the cattle into to sort the calves from the cows are not necessarily muddy, but when you have 60 animals in one space and the ground is soft, it becomes muddy, fast. Add in the organic matter that also usually ends up somewhere on me and you have a “slick” situation.

Blessings to you,
Laurie – Country Linkcountrylinked.wordpress.com

 

Mama’s Journal – Bull crap…

Here on our farm we only have mature working bulls for a few months. They are “cleanup” bulls that we lease to use after the cows are artificially inseminated. (A.I.) If you A.I. your cattle, you are going to need cleanup bulls. For more on this see my post, “Romance is Gone”.

Crap is here on the farm ALL OF THE TIME. As this is a full disclosure type of post, I am telling you that if you step on this farm, you might indeed just step in it. Literally.

Now bull crap on the other hand, or in the case of yesterday actually on my hand, is a bit rare. The bulls come to us in December, do their work, and then head back to their home in March. As a term of this lease, we needed to take them to the veterinarian and have them retested and DNA taken before they could be picked back up. That was my job today. Hauling the bulls to and from the vet’s. Oh, and their crap.

Why am I mentioning this? Again this is a full disclosure post and I am letting you know that bulls have a lot of crap. Literally. It was all over the inside of the trailer, on the outside and because they were in the trailer together, it was on them. It was especially on their tails and that is where the DNA sample comes from. And who’s job was it to pull tail hairs? (Two guesses and the first does not count.)

Really, this is no big deal and I have actually pulled lots of tail hairs. Each year when the calves are of age and have made the “list”, I pull tail hairs and put tattoos in their ears before they can be sold. (I just realized I need to add tattoo artist and DNA collection specialist to my list of abilities! I will give you a complete list one of these days.)

If it is no big deal then why mention bull crap in the first place? Do to the fact that it was not only on the inside of the trailer, the outside of the trailer and on them, but also all over me. I was trying really hard to be careful! I really was because of where I was needing to stop after the bulls were done being tested. What to take a guess as to where I was going next?

Did you guess the Bank? You could of guessed Wal-Mart and the bank happens to be right next to one, but I have a feeling no one would of really given me a second look there. So, yes, I was needing to stop at the very bank that we were at on Saturday morning getting things lined out for this crop year. I was needing to meet with the very banker I gladly shook hands with on Saturday when we arrived and left, and today neither one of us extended our hands in this customary greeting.

It could of just been me, but I have a feeling it had to do with the bull crap.

Blessings to you,
Laurie – Country Link

 

 

 

Mama’s Journal – Spreadsheets and Bed Sheets

Today was the day. The day we go and talk to the banker. It is a morning full of looking at numbers and cash flows and line items and balances and all of the other things you have to know and report when you talk to your banker.

Each year I get better at this. Each year I have a little more information to add to the mix and a better feel for if what we are doing is going to show us in the black or the red. (Quick reminder, RED is bad.)

Like most weekends my husband was up before me and out the door to get something accomplished before the trip into town to see the banker. During the week you can flip a coin to see who is going to be up and awake first, but weekends, that is his thing. Up and out to start the day. Me, I like to stay snuggled in my bed sheets and let the morning sun and the little noises the kids make as they are waking up get me going.

So this morning I stayed in bed just a little bit longer…………until I remembered those spreadsheets! That got me up and out of my nice warm bed sheets. We did not have a set appointment time, but knowing my better half like I do, if I did not have everything just about ready to go when he walks in 30 minutes late, then we were really going to be behind on the day.

So out came all of the spreadsheets and the computer and then the double checking began and the looking over and dotting every I and crossing every T. For even though I started all of this a few days ago, I still needed input from him and another set of eyes to make sure that I had everything right.

He gets back to the house, changes his clothes to head to town and comes to look over what I have. I get the husband stamp of approval and him calling me the Chief Financial Officer (CFO). I don’t need much in the way of a pat on the back, but as long as he continues to have faith in me and relies on all that I do for him and the farm, lets just say he will continue to see my spreadsheets and stay in my bed sheets.

Blessings to you,
Laurie – Country Link