Glory Downs Farm

Glory Downs Farm

Friday, December 14, 2012

Making the decision to have a child is momentous. It is to decide forever to have your heart go walking around outside your body. ~Elizabeth Stone

There are not enough stars in the sky to account for all the kisses a child needs.

Love your child for the gift that they are.

Your child is what shines so bright when the world seems so dark...

Psalm 34:18
The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit

Monday, December 10, 2012

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

“If I had a flower for every time I thought of you...I could walk through my garden forever.” 
 Alfred Tennyson

Monday, December 3, 2012

The Flight of Mr. Ferguson

Yes, Come wintertime I DO happen to look like a drag queen vampire who is half awake and likes rugged clothing. Heres me holding Elam. Obviously
An attempted escape from the clutches of a drag queen pale one!
"I laugh at the ability these thumbs have over you- and being higher in the food chain!"
Setting Mr. Ferg free.

Thats all this post is.
Nothing more

Sent from my Verizon Wireless 4G LTE DROID

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

The Sound of-

There are certain sounds that excite certain types of people.

For instance. 

Someone who lives on the West Coast my have their heart beat faster when they hear the sound of crashing waves.

Someone from the Midwest might love the sound of the crickets chirping in the corn fields on the dusk of a summers eve.

Someone from the South might love the sound of gasoline being thrown onto a bonfire thats cooking their can of beans.

Well a Yankee from the North loves the sound of a tree being felled.

Here is a video from today, of one of our giant oak trees being taken down.

This beauty had served better days but was resting her broken limbs a little too close to our house. The wood will be able to be used after being cut and split so nothing goes to waste. There are certain sounds that remind you of certain parts of your life you love. A tree being taken down just warms my cold New England heart.

*Snif *Snif! They growd up so fayst!

This weekend the "chicks," will be just shy of four months old- already!  And they have been living for about a month now in their own coop and yard next to the rest of the flock. But as of Saturday, the barrier between them will be taken down and they will hopefully learn to live in harmony. East and West Germany sort of thing......maybe I'll play some Pink Floyd to celebrate as we ....knock down the wall....

Here's some pics of them today.

Hildago giving me his pissant look. Mr. Elam Ferguson in the back, Miss Lilly is the yellow hen, and of course Madea had to peek in the picture.
Mr. Bohanan standing next to Miss Ruth.
Hildago inspecting the camera....still not sure whether to attack or not. Mr. Elam Ferguson in the background looking proper. Miss Lilly and Madea showing their tail feathers.

Sent from my Verizon Wireless 4G LTE DROID

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Like those big comfy sweatpants.

This past weekend was something else.

"Where God closes a door, He opens another."

And I found out He is there waiting, and holding up those big, comfy sweatpants, that you love so much.  The kind you slip into- don't worry if you look cute in them, eat ice cream, crash on the couch,  watch your favorite TV show, and drift off into blissful slumber- kind of sweatpants.

This weekend God handed me just those very ones.

The whole Farr family got together for Thanksgiving week.  The whole family. ALL 31 members of this amazing family together under one roof. And that roof happened to be ours.  We have been looking forward to this past week for months now.  It hasn't happened ever quite like this. All the children, and their children, eating, celebrating, dancing, and sharing laughter.  It was quite possibly the best Thanksgiving.

I won't go into too many details on the entire get together, but I do want to share the one thing that really stuck out to me. Its the whole "God closing  door and opening another," sort of thing.  what I actually mean by "He was waiting to hand me those comfy sweatpants."

You see I have been pretty candid on what I have been learning, and processing as a new Mom, and not without backlash.  But I haven't been so candid or open as to what I am learning as a Christian, and that has been somewhat purposeful. Long story short- this past summer, fall, and now this emerging winter, have been a pivotal point in my life and walk as a Christian.  I feel as though I am relearning the importance of "whats really important," in life.

You'd rather have 4 quarters, than 100 pennies.

I used to think that a 100 pennies was what was important.  The whole quantity over quality thing.... How many people would like me? Boy- that was important.

But I learned that even though you think people may "like," you, they don't ever really love you. And love is way more important than being liked by someone.

But now that God has gifted us with this little spitfire of a gal, its her popularity contest that I want to win. Its her love I want to obtain. I have mentioned this previously..

Ok so get on with it Lauren ....about the sweatpants analogy...

Family- that's quality.  That's where its at.  It isn't about popularity. It isn't about whether you are worried about being liked. It isn't about mistrust, backtalk, gossip, or pettiness. Its about the love you all share together.
Its like a picture you all "like," together on facebook.

I really realized that this past week.  I am astounded by just how MUCH love there is in this family.

My sister in laws. Wow
They are the kinda of girls that you have to do a double take on.
They are gorgeous.
And not just gorgeous but genuinely lovely.
They all love openly, and fully. They make you feel good when they see you.  They are interested in how you have been. They talk to you sweetly, and they listen intently.  They make you feel you are home on the days you are homesick.

And my brother in laws.
Full of laughs, and true gentlemen.

What I saw this weekend was the actual pride (and that's not in a bad way) they had to have a new niece.  There was no popularity contest. There was no fake smiles, or half assed hugs. It was all real. Rev was a new member of the family and she was welcomed, loved, and embraced fully. She's the new Farr:)

What a lucky girl she is.

So in these days, where my focus has not been on winning the popularity contest amoungst peers but instead on developing a relationship with my daughter and enjoying her EVERY second. I'm seeing  just how much my family is and always will be my true friends.  That's all we need.

This weekend was a glimpse into my past.

The Caplette family get together with a million cousins running around, yelling, screaming, eating candy, and being kids.  All our aunts and uncles together being their fun selves.  I was catching a glimpse into what MY childhood was like, and seeing the future of what Rev's childhood will be like.

Watching all my nieces and nephews while catching up with sister and brother in laws, made me feel as though God had handed those big comfy sweatpants to me.

Here you go- put them on.
Be comfortable.
Feel cozy.
Be yourself.
Don't worry about looking perfect
Cause you are loved.
Just the way you are.
That's why you have this family.

This Thanksgiving I am so thankful for the memories made. I am thankful to God giving me the eyes to see that true love, and caring comes not from so and so who you know thru so and so- but it comes from the people who He knitted together to walk thru this life with.

I look forward to more memories like this. For Rev to grow up knowing Uncle Marc Bob and Auntie Bumba, Auntie M, Auntie Nicole, Auntie Michelle, Uncle Rob, Uncle Matt, and Uncle Dave, Auntie Des Des, and Uncle Martin and Auntie Meg and Uncle Jomph- Knowing Uncle Beer;) and Aunt NeNe, Aunt WoWo, Uncle Jase and Auntie Allegra, Aunt Lisa and Uncle Eric, Uncle Charlie and Auntie Cara, and all the cousins!

 I love all of you- and thank you for loving us<3

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Oh How I've Woken Thee, Let me List Thy Ways..

So on more than one occasion I have woken up David from a deep slumber in some pretty dramatic ways. Last night was the probably the most interesting.....

I went to bed wearing a giant hoodie and a pair of Davids sweats.  Baggie clothes = ultimate comfort in so many ways..... So as I slept on my side feet curled up, my baggie hoodie hung open in the back.

I woke up (rather quickly) to something "giant scratching up my back.  I did what probably looked like a pretty impressive olympic move without waking David or the baby and ended up in a sittin postition when I felt the scratching crawling up my leg.

Two thoughts popped into my head.

1. This is a giant bug.
2. Nope. Its a mouse.

(this all took place in less than ten seconds)

I had (in the time it took to do my olympic move and have the nerve endings on my leg transport the message to my brain at 2a.m., yes 2,) grabbed the clump of mouse traveling up my pants.


I woke up David.

"David!?  Theres a mouse in my panst!?!?"
"David what do I do I have a mouse in my pants?!"

It took David more than ten seconds to wake up.

By then I realized that the crunch I felt was a mere back adjustment that I had given the mouse, and not the blood and guts kind of crunch.

It was still alive.

So as we snuck out of bed, ( I took off my pants as David held onto the mouse still in them) and we ran downstairs and chucked the thing off our porch (I had another pair of pants on by this time)

As the little mouse flew threw the air it sommersaulted, landed with a thump, and promptly- took off.

So this adds to the list of ways I have woken up David.

1. David! Theres water pouring into the house. (This was a month into living at our house at 6a.m. waking up to a giant thunderstorm and failed gutters dumping alllllllll the water into our bedroom and down the hall.)

2.  David! The bees have swarmed! 8a.m. ( first time it happened and my heart broke.  Now it seems they do this every other Sunday.)

3. David! Were having a cub!  (Sept 20th at 8 a.m.....sigh:) )

4.  David the hens have gotten attacked (thrice.)

5. David....theres a mouse in my pants.

Something I never thought I would be able to say.

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Lil Mamma

It was during the last two months or so of pregnancy that our dog Independence wouldn't leave my side.  

I read that animals can sense a change of sorts about to take place, and so I welcomed Indies constant company, and her working six sense.

But it wasn't until our daughter was born did Independence's dependency on her new found friend become so apparent.

At first we kept a close eye, and guarded Reveille in every way we could.  We let Indie know that this "was ours."  But as the weeks have turned to months the friendship between the two is undeniable, and really something to watch.

Each morning Reveille wakes up and I bring her down stairs, the first thing she looks for is her Indie.  who just so happens to be sitting at the bottom of the stairs waiting. A big smile comes across her face, and she just lights up. Indie dances.
When Reveille goes down for a nap, Indie waits outside her door. When she takes a bath, Indie comes into the bathroom. When she's playing on the floor Indie lays as close to Rev's blanket as she possibly can without being on it.
Indie makes Reveille laugh.  Really laugh.

The first night we had Reveille home Indie slept on the hard, cold floor, beneath her bassinet.

And this picture is Indie waiting (behind the baby gate) on the stairs while her friend rest comfortably for the first time today because of a bad cold.

It seems our little Independence's dependency on mothering her friend is something from the heart.

......and they say dogs have no soul?

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Climb the fence. Books and pens.

Fall is here.

A new season, and another page turned.

As Hurricane Sandy swept in with heavy rains and strong winds I feel it has taken with her the last bit of summer remaining.

and I am thankful.

With the birth of our daughter in the middle of Spring came the new beginning we had eagerly anticipated. But as the summer came on hot, heavy, stagnant, so did life.

It was hard.

Our daughter did not have it easy.
Two hour stints of sleeping. For months.
She was starving for the first three weeks of life, steadily losing weight. But the pressure of nursing your baby was so immense on so many levels and from so many people, that the guilt set in beyond words can describe.
I was in regular , burning pain, worse than labor, for three months.
I lived on the couch with my daughter on my chest for two months straight.
I did not move until David got home.
David worked longs days.
I was away from the people who believe in me most- my family.
As a new mother I heard nothing but advice on how to "fix my days."
I couldn't have a good cry without someone screaming the words hormonal.
I couldn't say that it was a rough day with out being diagnosed.
Farm life was hell.
My chicks were killed. Slowly and steadily. (this may seem like nothing to most but these were hatched from my favorite hen. They were born soon after Rev was. They were the little light on the dark days to watch with my daughter.)
Hens were killed by a hawk.
More chicks died.
Hens got sick.
Thought we had to cull the flock.
Bee's swarmed.
Hives failed.
The life on the farm that seemed so promising seemed to be diminished in a passing night.
Opposition from came from all places that I never thought it would come from, and that was the hardest.
I missed my family.
I was pressured in "how to be."
Pressured into "holding it together."
Pressured into "getting out."
Pressured into "being normal."
Pressured into what felt like everything.

It was really hard. And I do not expect anyone to understand.

But something is changing.
Slowly like the season creeping in
And now fiercely like the hurricane that made in way thru.

I woke up feeling refreshed today. Somewhat new, again. A realization has occurred. That in the popularity contest that is life I don't really care who I win with, as long as I always get most popular with my daughter.  The "things," that seemed so important even a year ago are now so trivial.  I wasted much time crying and being sad in the first months of my daughters life from these things that are now so trivial. I wish I could take that all back. I wish that it wasn't classified as being a hormonal girl. I wish people could see that it was a hard summer, on top of bringing a life into this world.  There was ALOT of stress. I didn't have a chance to relax into Mother hood. I wasn't allowed to relax. No one seemed to understand that I was a new Mom, and I had no idea what I was doing.  Let me be new. Let me figure out this whole new life. Let me be.

Now this isn't to take away from anyone suffering. I realize that what was hard for me would be a breeze to others, and I want to acknowledge that.  My bravery and courage would be minute in comparison to some I know suffering harder....this entry is to just be what I said I would be- honest and open. Personal to me. Available for you to read. That is all.

So like the Hurricane that ripped the summer leaves from the branches of strong standing trees last night, so has the heavy summer weight been ripped from my shoulders.

As the trees realize the need to dig their roots down, reach for the sun, and bloom in glory each new year, so have I realized to do the same.

I do not want to be one of those weak trees struggling amoungst the others in the forest reaching for a bit of sun. I do not want to be poorly set in soil.  I do not want to fall with the slightest bit of breeze.

I want to be the strong oak we have in our yard- our farm logo- that stands tall and firm in its place.  In movable by any opposition. Confident in its stance.

Quality not quantity.

Don't let me be a tree that drowns in the forest of other trees all trying to be the greatest.

Let me stand alone.

Let me be these things for our daughter to see.
Let her know that she is a gift given by God to us.
Let her know that she can stand tall and proud.
Let her know she does not need to be in a forest of others in order to fit in.
Let her be her.

As a Mom now, and really for the first time, realizing whats important its definitely the motto quality not quantity that sums it up.

The quality I see is in my family. My Mom, my StepMom, my Mother in law, and all their amazing advice, and love, compassion, and understanding. Their inability to judge.
The quality I see is in my husband for his hard work, his care and tenderness, his words full of love, his strongness.
The quality I see is the gift given to us by God. This little bundle of beauty, who is intelligent, healthy, vigorous and vocal. Who eyes and smile look so much like the person I fell head over heels for. That smile passed on has made me fall head over heels again.

The quality I feel is from God.
His unshakable love for even your darkest of hours. His bright light he keeps shining for you to seek when it is dark. He is the warmth of the fire on a cold day. "There to ignite your bones, and carry you home."

This entry I again say, is simply to state the feelings I have. They are mine to have, and share. That is all. I now know that its ok to have these feelings. Its ok to express them. Its ok not to hide behind them. And its ok to share them to others who might get something good out of them.

I welcome fall with open arms.

 I welcome the cold wind, and its cleansing of the stillness of summer.

 I welcome the warmth that is in our home<3

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Oh Shit.

The latest forecast...

Last Wednesday David came home from work to see me and Rev sitting n the front steps watching the tractors go by and the old Farmall mow the field across the street. (get the visual) (yes this really happened) (yes me ad Rev watch the Pop Pop tractors go by on a very regular basis).

He came home in a bunch of excitement.

We might be getting the storm of the century!  ....and he went on to explain what this Frankenstorm could potentially be.

Horror across my face.

Whats wrong? Aren't you excited?!

My answer was this:

"I am from New England! This could be bad! We gotta cut down trees, get gas, generator, water, butter,  and move all the important stuff to the safest place in the house NOW!  What about the chickens?!?!?!?  The bee's?!  They need to all be on the porch if this "thing," hits!!!"

Poor David I think I took all the excitement out of him:/

My New England stock gets the best of me even in a bad lightning storm so a storm of the century pretty much means this to me:

So as we have watched this storm brew for the past week it looks like its going to hit us pretty bad. Things could still change and for all we know it could be a bit gusty with a few rain drops here and there. But until we know for sure this Mass chick and her (you would think he is from Mass) Irish husband have gotten prepared. In a big way. Had a friend who cuts trees come and check out the ones of concern. Checked the coop for any that might be threateneing. Took apart the hives and condensed them to as little as possible- with the potential of moving them to the side of our house (who wants to clean up beehives blown over by a storm?) Got a crap ton of water. Generator in check. Baking cookies tonight. Firewood stocked.

Hoping everyone well wishes to be safe in the storm.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

A rose by any other name would smell as sweet yaddayaddayadda

Or would it?

I studied Billy Shakes for six long years.
And on this line I would have to disagree.

You see he is having Juliet tell Romeo that a rose if it were called a FJ Cruiser would still smell as sweet. It would still be the same thing, the same flower, the same scent.

But I disagree.

There are alot of people in this world.

Some smell good.
Other stink wicked bad.
But they are all people.

But its the ones that you know are real people.
The ones who, you can look at and know they don't stink.
That any other name for them would probably be better for them, more deserving.
because they aren't a typical person.
They are special.
They are sweet.
And true.

This little story is for a friend I have never met.  I still have high hopes of meeting her one day, and hopefully soon.  But until then I want her to know just how special she is. And that she deserves to be called something other than just friend. Cause she is something special:) She don't stink:)

I bought a rose plant at the end of the summer.
It was on sale for three dollars at Walmart.

I always wanted to have a rose plant, as my Grandfather had them all over his yard.  They were bold red and the ants just loved climbing on them in the mid summer heat.

the roses never seemed to mind.

I admired that about them

Ants bother me much.

So I bought this on sale rose plant. Its leaves were burnt from the sun. It was mostly stick, and thorn, and it was sitting all lonely amoungst the other bold early fall plants boasting of their potential.
Something about it was special though.

So I took it home and carefully planted it next to the chimney of our house.  It gave out a meek small, but oh so beautiful flower as soon as it was planted and I knew right then and there that if this rose decided to give its all..... That it was really going to be something.

Over the months the blooms fell off and the rose plant seemed to just be in limbo. No more blooms. Just still.

But something special was taking place beneath the ground.

Deep in the soil the rose plants roots were burrowing down. Deeper and stronger it grew underground. I couldn't actually see this event happening but knew it had occured the morning I awoke to find, that the rose plant had grown immensly overnight. Its roots doing their job, to form a solid base for what this rose was to become.  The roots knew the rose plant could grow, big, strong, and courageously.

It seemed to happen in a second.
This new growth.
This boldness.
Shooting up towards the sky and reaching evermore.
But it was leaning.
It needed support.
I gave it a wire fence to "climb," onto, which it seemed to appreciate.

Its main shoot had stregthn and courage to prove its worth, value, and importance.
Its wire fence being its "rock to lean on when it gets tired." The roses' somewhat quiet support. Unmoving, ready, waiting. Willing to help it when it needs to lean.

I admired this rose plant very much.  I look at it each morning eager to see if a flower has appeared.
It hasn't flowered yet, but each morning it reaches higher and higher towards the sky.

The rose hasn't blossomed fully yet. Not yet. But I know it can and I know it will.

I know that in the Spring when growth is abounding, and life is bursting forth, this rose is going to shine thru them all.
I know it will because of the roots it grew in the right place, and because when it gets too tired, it will always have something to support it. And the rose plant knows this as well.

So, to my friend I haven't met yet, I write this to you.  This rose plant that I see every morning reminds me of you, your story.
It gives me the reminder to burrow my roots down deep into the good soil, and if I do so, I too just might bloom.

Thank you for the inspiration you are.

 "Everyone who comes to me and hears my words and does them, I will show you what he is like:  he is like a man building a house, who dug deep and laid the foundation on the rock. And when a flood arose, the stream broke against that house and could not shake it, because it had been well built"

Thursday, October 11, 2012

.....Indie is sooooo ....Indie.

I hid a bone in the well,Don't ask me, I'll never tellI looked to you as it fell,And now you're in my way
I'd trade my food for a wish,Kibbles and bits for a kissI wasn't licking particularly this,But now you're in my way
Your stare was holdin',Ripped toys, teeth was showin'Barkin night, wind was blowin'Where you think you're going, Harlem?
Hey, I just boxed you,And this is crazy,But here's my chew toys,So chase me, maybe?
It's hard to look right,At you Harlem,But here's my chew toys,So chase me, maybe?

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Hildago laying down and Mr. Bohanan standing.  Their lady friends accompany.

Where Da food AT?

The chicks know that when I come up the cellar stairs (or basement for my Southern friends) that they gonna be fed.

Its cute to have the greeting crew.

Bee's getting it on.

Its exactly as the title states.

you lil perv you;)

A Town House.

Its time for the chicks to get introduced to the ladies downtown!

For the time being they have been living in a secured dog crate aside of the house with total range of the yard (and porch) during the day.  But as they get older, they need to eventually live with the rest of the gals (esp the roosters!) So this past weekend David built a small brooding pen aside of the chickens yard.

Couple awesome things about this.

1.  It will get the other chickens used to these newbies and the newbies used to the flock.
2.  It will be used as a seperate breeding area this Spring, for the next batch of chicks!  This will also help us to know exactly what breed we will be getting (even though the surprise is wicked fun)
3.  Any hen that goes broody next will have a safe quiet yard to raise her chicks!!!

Really excited about this.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Shake whats left of your tail feather.

Here they all are! Peeps batch number two. So far they are all doing well and no (knock on wood) raccoon/hawk/asteroid has gotten to them.

I've tried my hardest not to get too attached to them like the last ones in the event something does happen to them- but I cant help it. They are lovely.

Out of the eight I suspect we have six roosters.  Yes six.  I've noticed three in particular ( a barred rock, a  Buff Orpinton, and what I think is a Cali Leghorn) bumping chest and facing off with one another. They are also the ones to round up all the others and sound off their little alarms. They are a joy to watch.

Momma on the other hand has begun her official molt and has one tail feather left.  Just one.  The peeps as they get older are losing their fuzz and gaining feathers.  I'm really hoping that at least two (aside from what I think may be a rooster) are hen Buff Orpingtons..... I've learned that they are the sweetest.

Next spring we will round up a good twenty or so pullets.  This time we will be getting Buff's and Barreds.  No more of Rhode Island Reds.  I have lost much respect for them in their flock mentality.  With space, food and water plentiful, and our entire nine acres to run around they still choose to not only pick on one another- but really beat the crap out of one another.  I am left with bald hens who are bullied into not eating, or hiding.  Its not just one gal that runs the flock but they all pick. There is no head chicken.  One hen happened to get stuck under the fence. As David pulled her out- slightly scratched on her back and a little bloody, the other hens immediately took to pecking at her "wound," to the point of eating her alive.  I removed that hen for obvious reasons.

I realize that a rooster or two- or six will help this out, but I am looking forward to seeing what a flock of more Buffs and Barreds will bring.  The Buffs have been sweet, gentle, quiet, and good Mommas. If we do end up with six roosters- two will remain with the hens (the Buff Rooster) and the other four will live in the yard.  I'm looking forward to seeing that dynamic as well.

Next spring we are also going to get meat chickens.  I can't quite tell you how I became ok with it. Maybe it was the loss of respect for the RR that I now have. Maybe it was the phenomenal chicken we ate the other night from a friends flock. Maybe its knowing what my daughter will be eating. But that endeavour will begin next year as well.

Friday, August 31, 2012

Like Whoa.

Pretty sure I heard this egg come out of the poor gal.

Growin up.

The peeps out strolling with Red Momma. 

The A.M's.

Its two a.m. and I hear Reveille stirring in the bassinet next to our bed.

She can't be awake right now....she just fell asleep at 10:30?

She'll usually sleep till at least 4-

But for the past couple of nights she has woken up for a big bottle at 2 a.m. and fallen asleep quickly after finishing.

I let her stir for awhile, while I pass in and out of sleep.

But its inevitable.

The hunger cry.

Part of me waits for that one cry to jump out of bed and run downstairs to get her bottle.  There is a sort of superhero feeling that comes with it while you makes a bottle and the house remains asleep.  You have the ability to do the correct amount of ounces- heat it to perfection- go up and down the stairs (without falling) give the bottle- burp her- and put her back to bed as comfortable as she can be- and then pass out yourself.  The superhero feeling that comes with it is the ability to do this all on a lack of sleep for the past four months. And to do it joyfully. Willingly. Lovingly. And with so much fullness.
Like I said there is part of me that waits for that cry to jump into action and feel important to this new little someone.

And last night as that little cry came, and the bottle was given, I fell into my routine.....but Reveille did not.

She was awake.

Not like awake to eat the bottle.
I mean awake.
We call her Michelle Phelps for the way she kicks her feet out of excitement.
And last night she was Michelle Phelping it up in the bassinet.
What was she excited about?
Only her and The Lord knows.
But she was awake.
Momma was tired.

I grabbed her out of the bassinet to rock her in my arms hoping that I could coax her back to sleep.  We are taught as American women that babies need schedules, schedules, schedules!  But when she is ready to rock and roll at 2 am, and rocking in my arms isn't letting her know that its time for sleep and not play makes me want to take the schedule idea and throw it out the window.

I look out the window, as I rock her back and forth and kissing her head.
Our yard is illuminated by the full moon.
I can see the white beehives glowing.
I see shadows moving across the lawn and imagine that it is Ash beebopping around.
I'm admiring the quiet beauty of this late summer night, and wishing for sleep at the same time, when I heard it.
Her laugh.

Rev does this new thing. She cracks up after eating.
All you have to do is hold her near your shoulder, and something causes her to laugh.

It was then, at 2 a.m. while trying to get a baby to sleep on a beautiful night that her laugh broke my spell.

She melted me.

I could have cared less what time it was.
My baby was happy.
She was enjoying herself.
She was full.
She felt loved.
She was awake.


We ended up going downstairs where I put her in her swing with her pacifier.  It took all of ten minutes for her to fall asleep, but by then I was wide awake and played around on the internet while she happily snoozed.

I ended up staying awake till 5 a.m. but it didn't matter.  Those three hours of being awake in the middle of the night while our daughter let me know how happy she was was quite possibly the best three hours of my adult night life.  What does it matter if I sleep when I want to. I got a chance to peak into my daughters life and emotion, while the world was still. There was nothing else to do. No chores, no errands, no phone calls, no text, nothing else to do but to admire God's sweet little gift.

They say nothing good happens after 12 o clock.

But they must not have children.

Tuesday, August 28, 2012


its waged.

This time with reinforcements.

I was out admiring the hives today pondering what the crap might be going on inside them at this time (nothing new) when I saw it. A chick-a-dad killer.  Or better known as a Cicada killer ransacking my hive. (don't ask about previous name..)

Whats a chickadad killer?

Exhibit A:
But just picture this (insert swear word of your choosing here) about two feet big.

Ok maybe not TWO feet but at least two inches.
And that's no exaggeration.

So I know that at this time of year when Templeton is at the carnivals collecting 'crunchy," signs (anyone?) that the wasp and other such bee's will be trying to get into my hives to get honey.
(Little do they know there is none)

Wasp of the paper kind- hornets, yellow jackets of all sizes are buzzing about at the end of summer. And they seem to get the signal call when I open the hives. They buzz about smelling the hives sweet smell trying to get in.  The honies attack and the wasp usually give up.

So upon looking at the weaker hive that I have recently merged (that has an entrance reducer (thank goodness)) I saw them.

I knew that they were there.
Even suspecting them as the ones that came and robbed previously.
Saw them try to get in before.
Know where they live.

They live in my house.


Yes, friends. We have these giant bee's (if you should even call them that. I prefer mutant (insert swear word of your choosing here)) in a crack of our house, on the outside. They are not inside our house as in, watching TV with us each night, but more or less making a nest in a minuscule crack beneath a gutter in the back of our house.

You can at any given moment of the night be whacked upside the head by one if you happen to be closing up a chick coop with a flashlight. (which I happen to be doing every night)
And let me tell you. I may play with hundred of thousands of bee's (for fun) but I am scared (insert swear word here) -less of these things.

David has been pretty regularly spraying them with poison every week at night (cause I'm too scared too) but they keep coming back.  My guess is that the brood is hatching and since the crack in our brick house is home- they (the newly hatched babies) then themselves lay their brood which hatch and do the  same. (They are in fact a communal bee)

I've watched them for a few weeks now. Although I am terrified of these mutant sized bombers I am still interested (because I like bees and bee things). And they appear to be "kind of"  interesting.

The mutants have a bee line across the field (like my honey gals) but other than that I didn't know what else they do (beside kill cicadas, drag them into their lair, lay an egg in them, and wait for their brood to hatch)

But today I saw it.

One at my hive.

No biggie I thought.

Can't get in.

Honies will kick its ass.

It will take off?

Oh No.

I came to the entrance.


Got back up.

With a honey bee in hand (or four)

and took off.

Its taking my bees.

This is war.


Its on like Donkey Kong.

I hated that game.

I was scared of the monkey.

I'm scared of these bees.

But enough is enough.

You've over stayed your boring welcome.

Tonight this Yank will get the Rebs.

(calling "suspect," on wiki.  These wasp are not solitary nor are they non threatening.  I'm watching as they live with many other wasp in my house
as well as seen one sting a visitor while they were being "non threatening."  They also bop me upside the head each night just for carrying a flashlight near them)

Monday, August 20, 2012

I ain't here for your money. I'm here for the banks money.

Its always the good guys that get shot during a robbery right? 
The ones that try to save the day?

Well that's what happened to me today.
I got shot during a hold up.

I have three hives at the moment. One strong. One mildly weak, and the other was wicked strong.

You see last Monday I went into the wicked strong hive and was over come with bee's.  No they didn't swarm up all me or anything, but when I opened the hive there they were - massive amount- clumps of them.

Its what you expect in late August.  Hot weather and hot and "slightly moody bee's."
They could be in a good mood and just hanging around bored and lazy, or they could be ticked cause they are bored and hot.
Bored cause they ain't no mo necta flo.
True dat.

So anyways, yesterday I went into the wicked strong hive to give em some feed. Some nice freshly made sugar syrup.

I opened it up and saw tumble weeds roll by.

Where the crap did they go?

I broke down the entire hive only to find piles and piles of bees- healthy bee's and brood laying dead in a big crumpled bee mess.

If this were last year (my first bee charming year) I would have cried right then and there and sought revenge on what force of nature did this to my friends.

I'll kick your ass for doing this?! 
I know where you live!

I have since come to realize that here at Glory Downs Farm- all and everything weird that CAN happen to bee's. Will.

My bee's are apparently Irish and go by Murphy's law.

So as I broke everything apart I ended up seeing the queen. Stately, beautiful, and looking to lay eggs.


Weak hive check- 
no queen.


I take the weak hive, add it to the used to be wicked strong hive and I get halfway decent hive.(Maybe?)


How do I do that?
Well I won't bore you with too many details, but you basically leave the queen at the bottom hive box and put newspaper on top of it. Then take the other weak hive, place it on top of that and the bees will chew there way thru the newspaper in order to get close to the queen. All during which- they will get used to one another. No fighting, guys ok. We all get along. Bunk beds mean more space for activities.

So today I'm outside looking at this enormously stacked hive and I start to see some odd bee-havior.

They're all over my house.
On my porch.
On old hive equipment.

These little bastards better not be planning on swarming cause they owe me rent now.

I give it some time.

I look again.

Yup. They are getting robbed.

So during a robbery, the best thing to do is place an entrance reducer on the hive to help the bees IN the hive fight off any bees trying to get in.  I had already done this like a good doobie anticipating that THIS might happen.

The next best thing is to take a tarp of some sort and throw it over the hive!

I have one- better yet I have a clothe tarp.

So I walk with my glock fully loaded (actually its a clothe tarp) and as I approach (in civilian clothing)  annnnnd I get chased by bee's.

Little monkeys.

And yes, as a beecharmer (who ain't so good at charming) I run.
Just cause I like playing with hundreds of thousands of bees (weird) I don't like having them come at me pissed (normal)

So I wait a bit and then approach. Clothe in hand I throw it like a girl over the hive!  

It falls.(Naturally)

I bend and look to see if it at least covered the entrance-

It did!


I got hit. 

I slap my hand and run (like a girl) all the way to the house where I can lick my wounds, swatting and pulling at my clothes in the off chance that one "got in," somewhere.

The best thing to do if you get stung is, well a couple things. 
One- toothpaste. Don't ask me how, but the mint in it soothes the sting once the sting is out.
Two- onion. Yup onion. And if you look up uses for onions you'll be surprised they are great for a many of other things than making you smell bad at the gym.
Three- mud. That's my favorite. It'll pull the stinger out and soothe you. Plus its a good excuse to put mud on you.

So what is a bee charmers response to getting stung by the lovelies?


Yes, you never get used to it.
Yes it still hurts.
You ever stub your toe?
That never gets any better feeling the next time you do it right?

So we will see if my vigilanteness works. If not - eh. There are more hives to be had next year!

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Take Five.

How I feel before I write.

How I feel during writing.

Pretty cool huh?  I can feel like both- a rock star and a man! Yes ladies don't lie to yourselves. Sometimes you have felt like a man. Whether you changed your own tire, or dug a hole in the dirt- or even drank coffee black- you have at one point happened to feel like a man. Mine just happens to be a rock star man before I write.

And yes, during writing I feel like an empowered black woman, who happens to be named Beyonce.  even my legs at this moment feel her size so its possible that (while NOT looking in the mirror-) I might actually be channeling an inner Beyonce.  My hair at times can be pretty big. I even sing JUST like her in the car with the windows rolled up and no one else on the road.

So what does this have to do with "farm," life?

Let me tell ya.

This blog was design (by google) and with the purpose of "giving an honest and humble view of farm life." And I emphasize that fact.  In the past post I have been VERY honest at what is going on in life. Not all times I have stuff to write about that has to do with our animals. Sometimes I don't feel like writing about them because I may be pretty discouraged that some chickens have died and I don't know why- or the fact that after last weekend my hens have abruptly stopped laying. Why? I don't know. But yah. Sometimes I DON"T want to write those things.  Other times I want to write about what emotions I am going thru. New things I'm learning as I come into Motherhood. And those involve both good and bad emotions. But truthful emotions. This is a space for me to share those feelings freely- honestly- and humbly. And that is what I really, really, like to do.

The past two weeks have been extremely difficult for me. Emotionally that is. (men block your ears)  I am unable to nurse. That I have talked about on fb pretty clearly. And you know what- I'm really ok with that now. I don't need to fix anything. I don't need to talk about it. It took all of these three months to finally realize it. But I now know. Its ok. I am not poisoning my baby with formula. In fact my baby has never been healthier. You try nursing your child only to have her throw it all up within moments. Screaming for hunger pains. Then give her a bottle and watch her slowly drift off into the most comfortable sleep she's had in days.  You try it. Then judge. I love Gerber. Gerber loves my baby. I am grateful to have freed her of the "need," and "pressure," to breastfeed. Cause you know what. Only my husband and I know whats best for the baby God has give us. And bottle it be.

Now all that being said (men continue to block ears) hormones (ahhhhhh!!!) have flooded back in.     I was a blissfully happy pregnant woman.  But as breastfeeding fully comes to a halt hormones charge forth. And that's a little scary.  But after having a baby you can't have a good cry- or even eat a gallon of ice cream without someone telling you about how your hormones are affecting you. You know what? I'm well aware of what hormones are doing. I have been pretty aware since I was a young girl. If I need a good cry let me have it......and say a couple prayers for my amazing husband:)

Not that these hormones are outrageous. They are just back. I AM a woman you know. Sometimes I don't feel like smiling when I'm in a room full of people. Sometimes I like to sit back and listen. (that's for you Kittens Mittens)That doesn't mean anything more. I am not unhappy. I just don't sit around smiling like an idiot at all times.

So whats good for me to do during times where I'm contemplating shaving my head (thinking that might be a good idea) and feeling a bit weepy?  Write.
Yes ladies and Gentlemen.

You ever have a diary when you were a child?Well blogging is modern day adult diaries. This time though they have been unlocked and left opened and encouraged to read. You won't get in trouble reading someones diary nowadays.

So I started to do that. Two weeks ago. When it all came out.

I started to write on my blog.
I wrote all over facebook.
Crap-  might have even tagged a few walls down in D.C. one night.
I wrote it all out.

The loneliness I felt.
The fatigue.
The utter, unavoidable joy that explodes in your heart when your baby smiles at you.
The distance I felt from my family.
Then the anger.

Yes anger.
I am a Christian, but that does not make anger unavoidable. It just makes it firey hot at bad times.

I upset some people.
I backed down.
I apologized.
I upset some more.
I apologized more.
I cried.
I wanted to hide.
I had no place to hide.
I stopped writing.
Tore down all my favorite posters on my wall.
Started to question the who am I
Tossed aside favorites.
Stopped hitting like
Status updates were no longer updated.
No more diary entries.
No more sharing.
No more honesty.
No more humbleness.
No more.

So what then.
what did I have, to write on.
My diary had been burnt up.
Traded with someone for one more cup of coffee to get my energy out.
I froze.

Then one morning I awoke to a facebook message from a distant friend.  She told me that she actually had time to write me a message (and I understood the time thing:) ) and I was prepared to read something not good.  I was fully ready. Gut in gear. To read how I might have upset another....

It wasn't that.
 In fact-
It was about how I helped her.
I did?!
I helped her by "being real."
I kinda burst at that moment.
You mean someone was listening?
Someone read my diary, all of my diaries, and was ok with them.

Bliss captured in a picture.

Remember that saying back in kindergarten- "Mind your own beeswax?"
Yah that one that's equivalent to "Go Fahck yuself." (read out loud my Non New Englander Friends- it really does help to understand:) )

Yah that saying was pretty crappy to have thrown at you. But back 25 years ago there WAS such a thing  as "minding ones own beeswax."  If someone told you to do it- It meant "get the hell out of my business."

But you see you can't really say that to anyone in today's world. Not with facebooktumblrblogginggoogleplusyahoochatsyouallknowmyfavoritebrandofunderwearandwhoithinkisthemostawesomeestbandatthemomentkindofworld.  No not when you upload a picture of your every move and then tag yourself at each location of your house that you are in.  Nope. Can't mind your own beeswax. Not anymore.

But lets clarify that for a moment.  And I will use the help of several thousand of my golden gal friends.
The bees.

You see in the hive wax just doesn't magically appear.  It doesn't sprout from trees and flowers outside. It isn't gathered by a glittery fairy and dropped off in the dead of night to the bees hive doorstep.  No. It comes from their gut.

Yup. Their gut.

Wax is produced on the belly of the bee.
Its something that naturally happens on a day to day basis.
The bees have to remove their wax.
The bee's in order to get rid of their wax. Scrape the wax off their belly and share it with the rest of their hive.
They put it to use.
They use it to put tops on the honeycomb in order to store the goods.
they use it to blanket the baby bee's.
They use it for comb.
They use it to build a stronger hive.
Its a communal thing.
Not private.
Bee's never mind their own beeswax.
They share.
So really the bee's were the first to log onto a facebook kind of world if you think about it.

I realized this last night when me and my husband went to the fair.  Naturally we had to go see the bee exhibit as we have a friend that runs it.  At the exhibit there was beeswax of all kinds on display. Some light, some fragrant, some golden as the sun, and some dark.
Yes their is dark wax.
That's usually voted as the "not so good wax."

You see when wax gets judge at the fair its usually the lightest one in color that gets first place.  The more pure looking and whiter in color the better quality it must be!  The darker the wax the poorer quality it is.
But you see when wax is that light and pure, the bee keeper who processed it took out all it impurities. They rendered it to the point of "perception of pureness."  All the realness taken out. No pollen mixed in. No honey drippings exposed. No bee parts. Just pure white wax.
Where's the realness? Where is that wax scraped from the bee's belly?
But its the whitest of the wax that wins?
The less real?
The one that's rendered to be almost fake looking?
The one that's processed to the point of being of quality that everyone is comfortable with?
You mean no one is comfortable to touch wax that has pollen, honey, and bee parts in it?........even though that's the real one? Yes that white wax IS beautiful, lovely, almost magical. Who doesn't like it? For real.....its very stunning stuff.
But for real- the real is to amaze....

You see the irony is, that the bee's don't mind their own wax. And we don't either. We don't like to. Its not human nature to do so. Facebook allows us to mind everyone else beeswax. And we often enjoy it. It builds a community.  Sometimes there is other wax that we don't like, but all in all its still wax. Its still scraped from the bellies of our other bee friends and used in some sort. But if we then take that beeswax- render it- process it to the point of oblivion. Take out allllll the realness, juuust so everyone likes what they see, touch, feel and taste. Where then is the good stuff gone to?

My friends.

Love who God made you to be.

If that is someone who enjoys something that not everyone else does- so be it.
If that means to like a baseball team that other people think suck. So be it.
If it means you like to eat peanut butter out of the jar when no one is looking so be it.

Be yourself.
Be who God made you to be.
Cause you know what- theres gonna be alot of people in this world who don't love you. But He does.
And that's what really matters.  Not whether someone disagrees with what you might be doing on this fine Saturday, but whether God thinks your a pretty cool chick.

So thank you to my friend who in the past sent me a sweet gift of beeswax candles (no lie) thank you for sharing in the beeswax with me. Thank you for letting me know that God thinks I'm a pretty cool chick. You have done more for my courage in the past moment than I could ever fully explain.  Much love to you and Peace from the Father above<3

So lets then- continue to share our beeswax in this community we choose to have. Lets share and if there is some that is not the color you so like. Just pass it by. Its someone else's wax that they need to scrape from their belly.

Saturday, August 11, 2012

Weekends off.

Notice the gal on the fallen tree? She's eating up all those ants living inside it- smart gal!

We all deserve them some times.

Today was the first day that I let the gals out of their big yard into our big yard in awhile.  With the hawks and a giant mangy fox (not Ash) that pays them a visit every now and then, I have been leary to.  But we have been home all day, and David has been working outside so it was long over due for these gals to let loose.Literally.

They didn't quite know what to do at first. I opened both their gate and the coop door, so while I did that they ran back into the coop. When they actually realized they could run around OUR big yard- it was game on.

Somehow its medicinal to me to look out the kitchen window while washing bottles and see a flock of 30 some odd chicken running loose.  To then step outside and have the three growing peeps greet you at the steps (cause they've taken up fort underneath our porch)  I just love it.

On another awesome chicken note- more peeps have hatched today!  The red Momma has faithfully sat on those eggs for 22 days now- and away they hatched!  SO far I think we have six, and she is still sitting on a good number of eggs, so were not quite sure how many we will end up with.  We were not sure initially what eggs were fertilized and what were.  We did lose one chick already though- it was fully developed but looked as if the Momma knew something was wrong with it.  Only its feet were out of the shell and the chick was still folded up inside.  Its sad but I'd rather it not make it from the very start- than to have it lose its life later on like our other chicks did.  The colors we got are a light almost white gray, some yellows, and a black chick with a white chest- much like a penguin:)  Pics to come as soon as I can see them all!