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The Fair

27 Sep

Bright and early saw me headed to the Isaacson Ranch to pick up Sis Connie Isaacson to head to the fairgrounds to enter my goods for judging. Needless to say who I thought of when I arrived:

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(If you can’t guess…it was Reuben.)

A look at some of the produce that was there. I’m sorry about the blurryness.

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Some livestock. (Okay…so one goat doesn’t count as “Some”, but still…)

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How my blue quilt did. Second place!

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My Green blouse! A Blue ribbon! (I loved that blouse before it won, but even more after. LOL)

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Lydia and Me on a genuine Border Patrol 4-wheeler.

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I was very tired at the end of the day, and quite glad to head home. I think I will be much better prepared for next year though…

Yearly Branding at the Isaacson Ranch

30 Jun

This year the Branding was held before the 4th of July (As the 4th of July was a wednesday night.) If you remember, Jordan and I attended last year ***POST LINK TO PREVIOUS POST*** ย and we really enjoyed ourselves, and because we live right next door (literally) we decided to get there in time to see the actual branding part.

BTW…if My mom is reading this: You might want to skip this post if you don’t want to see pictures of the poor little calves getting branded.


As we pulled up, we saw the first attraction of the day…Donkey rides!

We arrived at the cow pen and saw that they were allowing the little guys to rope the calves! It was great!

“I think we roped one!”

Dragging in the calf.

Tagging the ear.

Preparing for the Antibiotics.

Administering antibiotics.

Branding the first part of the brand.

The first brand.

Branding the second part of the brand.

Dragging in another calf.

Even the girls are involved!

Wrasslin’ the calf to the ground. (he fought.)

Amid the clouds of dust, he succumbed to the stubborness of the greenhorn cowboy who wouldn’t be bested by a lil ole calf!

Ride ’em cowboy! After the calf has been tagged, antibiotic-ed, and branded, they took a rope and put it around the calf’s middle, and let a little guy (or girl) get on for a little buckin’ bronco ride. It was fun to watch! The little guys loved it!

And he bites the dust!

Jordan had Lydia as I was taking pictures, and decided to let her ride the donkey.

I think she enjoyed herself! ๐Ÿ™‚

The bull of the herd. They separated him out from the rest of the herd to make it easier to do what they needed to do. He looked very bored and disgusted at the whole process, and couldn’t be bothered. (Look at all of those flies all over his side!)

Creating a new ear tag for one of the cows.

The branding irons heating.

The girls helping out!

Oops! Got him by the hoof!

Another Greenhorn cowboy determined not to be thwarted by a calf! ๐Ÿ˜€

We ended up leaving the branding part early as I had food I needed to finish up. We missed the castrating of the calves (ha! not sorry!), and the rest of the immunizations of the bigger cows, but made it in time to bring the food. After wading across the very low river (won’t do that again!) we got to the picnic site and laid out our food. We enjoyed a nice afternoon of fellowship and food.

I wish I had emptied my camera pictures, as I would have loved to have gotten video of the mad scramble of kids when the pinatas broke open. All in all, it was a long, but very enjoyable day! I know better how to prepare for next year!

Helicopters and Cannons

1 Dec

We headed up to Tampa from Clearwater to go stay with some friends, and ended up detouring along the way. We headed to Fort Desoto, only to be sidetracked by a vision of a helicopter hovering over the water. We pulled into a resort parking lot to where we proceeded to watch the helicopter hover over a boat in the water for probably 10 minutes. We don’t know how long it had been there, or how long it remained there, as it was still hovering after we left.

The resort seemed to be very pretty, with a Cabana…

…a Marina…

…and the beautiful water line.

We stopped by Fort Desoto, a little outpost near St Petersburg. As I have been to the St Augustine Fort, I was not expecting such a modern fort. It was used during the Civil War up until WWI if I remember correctly. They have some artillery there that is the only known remaining pieces of that kind.

Jordan goes into one of their ammunition rooms.

They had HUGE chains sticking out of the wall. The chains had rusted into place (or were saudered to keep people like myself from seeing if they moved). The chains were probably 1.5″-2″ thick.

They had a total of 8 large cannons, 4 in each section. At this point, they only have 4 remaining on site…2 in each section. They rotated a full 360 degrees, used 83 pounds of powder for EACH shot, and the projectiles were 1,000 pounds!

Look at the spring system on the cannon!

The inside of the muzzle.

After admiring the Fort (build into a mound), we walked a path to the Gulf, just a few hundred feet away.

A very romantic sand drawing by Jordan!

Jordan with Lydia waving hello.

Admiring the Ocean.

Getting a second look at the water.

Me walking barefoot along the water.

Seashells washed ashore.

Oh yes…and the Direct TV blimp. ๐Ÿ˜€

Legacy Golf Resort

15 Sep

We went up to Phoenix for some training for Jordan’s work, and we ended up at the Legacy Golf Resort as the result of Jordan’s Priceline bid (which was just a few dollars more than what Jordan’s boss would pay to stay at a Red Roof Inn whenever he went to Phoenix!) Very lovely!

It had a kitchenette where we made our breakfasts and dinners…

…and a nice living room area with a patio.

The bathroom was quite nice…

…and the roomย had an entry way…

…as well as a closet washer/dryer stack.

I loved how they did the towels…

…and tissues…

…and I was amused at the telephone near the toilet…

…except later I realized that perhaps it was for the [older] people that stayed there in case they slipped on the tile floor coming out of the shower, so that they could call for help.

Lydia really liked the mirrors.

Heh…poor housekeepers having to get the low down fingerprints. ๐Ÿ˜€

Being that we were going to be there for a few days, I decided to bring something to help pass the time. I had a dress to sew, so I brought my sewing machine and got it all ready, and decided that something wasn’t quite right.

Aย closer look revealed that I had forgotten my power cord!

Needless to say, I did some “hand” sewing, as I was determined not to waste the time I had! We enjoyed our stay there…except for the thin walls. For the most part it was okay, but we were wondering how much THEY were hearing on our end with Lydia.

Heh…so this may be the reason why I don’t have a dishwasher.

I was trying to get the dishes done for the housekeeping staff, so that when we checked out there wasn’t a sink full of dishes for them to wash. Well…I had the tablet for the closing detergent section, and nothing for the open detergent section, so…*sheepish* I put dish soap in the dishwasher. I came back and found bubbles seeping out from the dishwasher. I cleaned it up a couple of times with our bath towels, and then left a bath towel under the dishwasher as I had to leave to check out.

Next time I will NOT put dish soap in the dishwasher. :-p

Huachuca City, Fuel and Cloudbursts

10 Sep

Here we are overlooking Fort Huachuca and Sierra Vista. Sometimes hills are a lot higher up than they look! I wasn’t expecting this view!


ย Later, we stopped for gas, and I was THOROUGHLY tickled to see that this gas station carried a variety of fuels, such as Ethenol,

your typical unleaded, diesel, and (my personal favorite) RACING fuel!

Advertised as that as well. Octane of 100. I got a picture so that you would believe me. I was looking at the pump and almost couldn’t believe my eyes, and had to get out to make sure it was really what it was saying. It was.

I went around to Jordan who was just finishing pumping up the car, and I informed him that we had gotten the wrong gas. After telling him that we had needed to get the racing fuel instead, he resumed breathing, and told me that I had scared him, making him think that perhaps he had maybe put diesel into the car instead. After I apologized, and felt really bad about scaring him, he said it was okay, and then was able to appreciate the amazingness of the racing fuel. :p

By the way…the price of that gas was $5.99/gallon!ย 

Then, on our way back, we passed by [more] cloudbursts. Those things are so neat!

Just think of how many thousands of gallons that are falling out of the sky!

Oh yes…this one is for Uncle Russell Wallace. ๐Ÿ˜€

Finished Quilt and the AFHE Homeschool Convention

22 Jul

One more project to cross off the long term project list. ๐Ÿ™‚

Hand stitched butterflies…

As well as pre-embroidered butterflies…

With Matching pillows and shams. ๐Ÿ™‚

In other news…

The AFHE (Arizona Families for Home Education) convention happened this weekend. It was huge. They had Ken Ham this year as the keynote speaker for the first morning session, and he was quite good. He is the director for the only Creation Museum in the world, located in Ohio. He had some good things to say. I had some of the sessions lined up, but…some of the speakers were better than I pictured, and others I was disenchanted with. Angela Baggett was able to come for the first day before flying out to Canada that evening, so she and I ended up picking all of the same sessions, but ended up walking the curriculum hall near the end. She thoroughly enjoyed herself, and as a Canadian Educator, she was unaware of all of the curriculums available to homeschoolers. She did say that she was unhappy with the American school system, and any future kids would be homeschooled. She will be very good at it.

Attendance was up from last year, so…guessing somewhere between 4,000-5,000 people. We hung out with the Couba’s, Semrocks, Wallaces, Martins, Roberts, and a few other people the first night. We went to “My Big Fat Greek Restaurant“, and got the flaming cheese. As Lydia was hungry, I had to excuse myself into the restroom to try to nurse her, so I missed the flaming cheese at our table, but apparently we set a trend that night as there were quite a few other “flare ups”, so I felt satisfied to have gotten my show.

The next day, Jordan and I spent a bit of time together in some of the sessions (trading off caring for Lydia), and ended up in the Curriculum hall together. We got the 1828 edition of Noah Webster’s dictionary from Vision Forum. Jordan has wanted that for a while, so I felt satisfied walking away with that. It is amazing the difference between the dictionary of today, and Noah Webster’s definitions. As a Christian, it would make a wonderful study guide, and as a Christian parent (and homeschooler), consider it as a teaching tool. It has scripture references, and meanings that the world has long since has tried to ignore in order to do what they have wanted to do. If the dictionary condemns you, then change the dictionary. *sigh* What a degradation of our society.

That night after the convention ended, we went with the Wallaces and three ladies from Canada (all the way from Canada to Arizona just for the convention!) to a place called Thai Elephant. It was quite good, but I filled up on my dish rather fast. Jordan and I ended up with all of the leftovers. :-p good times!

4th of July weekend – The Isaacson’s yearly branding

2 Jul

Every year, the Isaacson family has had a branding and then a potluck style cook out afterwards, everyone is invited, bring enough food for your family. We had been invited by Jonathan (the oldest of one of the families, who now has kids of his own), and the rest of the family was invited by Amos Garcia (also an Isaacson). The ranch is deeded to where it cannot be sold out of the Isaacson family, so this 400+ acre ranch is owned by various members of the Isaacson family, some owning just an acre or so, while others own much more. The property runs along the San Pedro River, and it is absolutely beautiful there.

Jordan and I were house sitting for the Fraijo’s who were in Mexico at Shiloh’s wedding at the time, so we were coming from Sahaurita, aaannnd…as is the case many times, we were running behind. I had wanted to see some of the branding, as I have never seen branding done in real life (not as to my recollection), so I thought it would be a neat thing to experience, and, of course, blog about. We took a very scenic route through some mountains, and I enjoyed it.

As we started to come into the Whetstone area, (outside of Sierra Vista which is right next to Herford where the Isaacson’s ranch is), Jordan pointed out a few areas where the fire had been just a few weeks ago. It got started by a few drug runner illegals to try to get the border patrol off their tracks.

ย Justice served itself, and the 3 who started it got caught up in it and they didn’t survive. There were many people evacuated, I don’t know if there were many (if any) who were killed, but they lost 50 +/- homes.

I got a couple pictures of the prairie,ย  but as we got closer to the ranch, I started just watching more and took no photographs. As we got more into Sierra Vista, we saw many homes to where the fire had burned the shed and all around the house, but left the house unburnt. Many Cottonwoods were destroyed, devaluating very valuable property.

As we got closer to the ranch, it was more green and lush. We also passed A.A. Allens old Bible college on the way there, which I found to be rather neat. Dilapidated old buildings and a “for Sale” sign now occupy the once active campus, and I found myself picturing what the campus must have looked like back in the old days.

After a few turn around’s (due to distracted directions from someone), we were able to find the drive, and got there in time to see about the last bit of Immunizations. We pulled up and got out. There were small children on horseback being led around by adults, dogs, children, a pond with a gushing wading pool that ran into the pond with little kids and their parents splashing around in it.

I was quickly introduced to quite a few people, and so for a bit there, my head was whirling from trying to take a few pictures, take everything in, and remember people’s names and the associations. Fortunately, the rest of Jordan’s family had come…last minute decision, for as of the night before, only 3 of them were going to come.

This one was either being pushed from beind, or just wanted it over and done with! ๐Ÿ˜€

After about 45 minutes, they had finished with the immunizations (with Jordan’s Dad helping).ย 

They directed everyone to the river side where they were going to be setting up lunch. We all drove down there, and quickly the tables and food were being set up. The activity is too much to describe to you…

there was a climbing rope (Jude and Jordan both got up about half way, but realized that they had better be saving their strength for work)…


…they brought in two piรฑatas for the kids…

…a volleyball game got set up after lunch, there were kids playing in the river (which was low, but covered in algae, which, yes, meant that the kids were covered in it too!), and horses being ridden.

We set up zome blankets in the laundry basket so that Lydia would have a clean place to hang out.

Eventually I was asked if I wanted to ride, and I said yes. Someone lent me a skirt, and Melissa Isaacson (Jonathan’s wife) and I went on a ride. I found it to be very pleasant, as away from the group it was very quiet, peaceful and relaxing (albeit dusty :D).

When we got back, Jordan was ready to call it a day, as was I. We collected our things, and we headed back to the Fraijo’s where we were staying. Needless to say, we slept very well that night!

A huge thank you to the Isaacson’s for their hospitality.

Off to the Fair…

21 Apr

Working on shower and baby thank you’s has been a bit more of a challenge than I thought. Almost done with the shower Thank you’s. Now I just have to do all of the other ones, as well as devising a system to help us keep track of which ones has been given/mailed out, so that we don’t miss anyone. It may seem like a lot of work, and taking too long, but who wants to be the one who didn’t get thanked? :-/

I finally got to go to a fair and see the quilts. I have been wanting to do that for several years now, and it was quite a nice little outing for Jordan and I and Lydia. Jordan went to Sierra Vista for a job walk with the boss, and so I stayed with the boss’s wife until Jordan and the boss got back, and then we all left to go to the fair. We were ahead of everyone else, which was fine by me. We could go at our own pace. We went and saw some old vehicles, a shark show (swimming with the sharks…it was kinda neat actually.) They had this rather large shark tank built right into a semi trailer. I was admiring the wrap job done on the trailer, but as I decided that taking the camera in with me was too much stuff (diaper bag, purse, etc), I have no pictures to show you. My favorite part was before the diver went into the tank, he had a volunteer (young boy around 12 years old) come up and demonstrate how well made the tank was, and that the glass was strong. Before the boy demonstrated, the diver (Which had a bit of an Australian accent, or so I thought), said “Now, if the glass WERE to break, DON”T PANIC! The sharks will go everywhere, and while they are on the ground, reach down, pick it up, hold it TIGHTLY as it will be flopping around, and head as quickly as you can to the sting ray aquarium and GENTLY put them in, but don’t disturb the stingrays!”

After that, he told the boy to pound as hard as he could on the glass…UH OH, before you do, hey…that shark right there was eyeing you! ๐Ÿ˜€ย  Okay go ahead and pound! Right as the boy started banging, they played a soundtrack of glass breaking, and a small hole right below where he was banging started spraying the audience. You should have seen that boy dive under the audience railing! ๐Ÿ˜€ The guy pulled him back and said “Hey hey! It’s leaking. You gotta stop it!” Finally after a few humored comments (Such as “I hope you’ve got a strong arm..cuz we got a long show”), he asked for some chewing gum, and all of the little kids in the audience that had chewing gum were frantically waving their hands. They plugged up the “leak” with the chewing gum, and started back on with the show. It was very funny, but the guy said, “I’m sure you all in the back find this more humorous than all of the people in the front” (who all got wet.) ๐Ÿ˜€

So after that we walked around, found the quilts and home arts, as well as a few people we knew. After talking with them for a bit, we moved on, entertaining Lydia and admiring the quilts. I’ve wanted to try to enter a quilt into the fair, but later I told Jordan “I don’t know whether to be intimidated, or inspired.” There were some very nice quilts, and I am not an expert quilter yet. Ha! I’m not really even a quilter. I’ve got a list of about a dozen quilts to make, and I’m still trying to figure out how to run a house, much less add a few quilts into the mix! Sorry, Sarah and Jonathan. Your quilt may be a 5 year anniversary present! :-/

After that, we decided to see the sheep, goats, chickens, and whatever other livestock that they had there. Lydia decided she didn’t want any of it (According to Jordan. :p) We saw this HUGE turkey there. It was so big it could hardly walk. The thing looked like it had been pumped up with air! Definitely not your grocery store turkey. This would take a VERY large oven to bake it. I don’t think that it would fit into most ovens that I have seen. It is more like roasted turkey on a spit over a fire pit (with a walnut in it’s beak. :D)

Then, finally deciding to leave (because I was tired) we started heading out when I spied some cute little dresses at a booth. I think it was Native American items, and so I just stepped closer to take a look. As I did, a man stepped out and started showing me the dresses, taking one down, and I said “How much?”.

“Tirty-Five.” (English wasn’t his first language.)

“Okay, thank you.” I started to walk away. It was a bit too much, and I wasn’t planning on buying anyways.

“You want?” He offered the dress.

“No thank you. I have to save my nickels for next year.”

“I can do twenny five.”

“No thank you, I have to save my nickels for next year.”

“How about twenny?”

“I didn’t bring any cash with me.” (Jordan had it all. :P)

“We take credit card.” (Please make sure those are hispanic R’s when you read that. :p)

I shook my head. “I really don’t want to do that. Thank you though.”

He looked at me incredulously, dress in hand. “You woodn’t even take it for TEN?!”

I was humored at this point. I hadn’t even TRIED to haggle him down! I said “No thank you…but thank you.” and we walked away. Well…it started naggling at me. Most dresses are a good price at $10. So I asked Jordan and he was okay with it, so I counted out the quarters, and I had $10. I told JOrdan, “I’m going to go offer him $8.” Jordan said, “Aw…don’t haggle with him.” (he was feeling pity for the guy.) So I decided not to.

I walked back to the booth, and saw the guy, and asked him…”Still ten?”

He shook his head. “I changed my mind.”

I asked him, “what did you change it to?”

“Twenny five.”

I said “I have $10, but I don’t have $25. Thank you” and walked away, as I didn’t even HAVE $25, so it was okay to walk away. Needless to say, it has kind of naggled at me that I didn’t get the dress right then when he offered it at $10, or that I didn’t even counter offer for $8, (Saying that I had found $8 to buy it with.) I do remember my Dad telling me that you can really do some haggling as long as you are willing to walk away from whatever you are haggling over.

So, somewhat disappointed now, Jordan and I left, and he decided to console me with Costco pizza (which is his favorite :p), and this Mocha Cappuccino drink by Bolthouse Farms sold in Walmart. It is a rich, chocolatey drink with a mild coffee flavor…and Jordan and I both THOROUGHLY enjoy it! That helped…and I had to have Jordan tell me that I could make a dress like that, and even prettier. ๐Ÿ˜€ Yes…I had to have my ego soothed after that. ๐Ÿ˜€

So those were my adventures at the fair. Jordan offered to buy me ice cream while we were there, and I knew he was trying to do it to be sweet because I was getting tired, hot, and trying to find a place to try to nurse Lydia because she was a little cranky, but Jordan and I tell each other that we could buy a whole quart, or half gallon at the prices that they charge for ice cream at various places, so I did turn him down, but took him up on the pizza and the drink! ๐Ÿ˜€ Over all, I thoroughly enjoyed myself, and had a lot of memories.

Developments on Lydia…she has been making razzing noises back at the ones that I do at her. They are SO CUTE! ๐Ÿ˜€ That, and the other day, she lifted her head up so high that she got top heavy and tipped over. It isn’t the first time that she rolled over, but it is definitely the most memorable. ๐Ÿ˜€ I was in the shower watching her on the towel on the floor (because she had an exploding diaper which got all over her, me and the couch cover, all which had to be washed), and she was looking at me, and raised up higher and higher until she just wobbled over. She didn’t hit the toilet, for which I was very thankful! She is getting stronger and stronger every day, and she loves to be raised up into a sitting position by holding her hands. She pulls and I help, and she absolutely loves that!

Okay…back to Thank yous! She is still sleeping at the moment (best as I can tell, she is silent). Gonna go tip-toe in there to check on her, and then I’ll be back to my gratefulness session. Tell you what…after so many, you really realize what it means to be thankful, and in realizing how much people have done for you. It’s been good. ๐Ÿ™‚ A tip: when Princess Diana of Wales was asked out to an engagement (dinner, lunch, etc) she had a pre-addressed envelope with a blank thank you sitting on her desk for when she got back so that she could immediately pen a thank you and have it sent off right away.ย I know…I’m working on it. ๐Ÿ˜€