Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Generation Gap

One of Isaiah's spelling words this week is "stop". Isaiah was pretending to give Anna a spelling test and the way he was saying "stop" reminded me of a Mr. MC Hammer. After he repeated this word a few times this is how the conversation went:

I: (said to Anna) STOP
M: ....hammer time
I: (said while gaving me a very, very blank stare) Huh?
M: Oh, nevermind.

Now, I fully believe that had Matthew been done taking a shower at the time and heard the conversation he'd have laughed. Oh well.

Sunday, September 28, 2008


Well, it's happened Henrietta has provided the first of many eggs. Amazing. The photo shows Hen's "Easter Egg" egg compared to a standard grocery store large egg. Typically chickens start out laying eggs that are a bit smaller than their eventual sized-egg. I do not know how our chicken's eggs will size up compared to a grocery store egg, only time will tell.

Also, the eggs our particular chickens lay are blue-green in color. The eggs are referred to as Easter Eggs. The shade will range from a pale blue-green to a deeper shade. I would consider the egg in the photo on the pale side.

Now, an update on our flock. It's been a rough go of it. You may remember earlier this spring Matthew and Anna brought home six little hens. Custard, being one of them. Well, after the five remaining hens were large enough to be outside, it was still rather chilly out at this point, we had them in a rabbit hutch of sorts. Perfect for the amount of chickens we had and their size at the time. Unfortunately there were a couple feral cats that depleted our flock. How did we know they were feral? Because tame, outside cats would not have gone to the trouble of actually pulling the young birds out of the hutch. Too much work when you aren't all that hungry. So, after we were thoroughly upset at the Rolli household Matthew trapped and dispatched the two cats. This happened on an individual basis. The 2nd cat was caught about a week after the first. The only remaining chicken that survived was, Henrietta the Brave.

A few weeks later we just bit the bullet and purchased a whole flock of 0ne-day old "Easter Egg" chickens. Hens and roosters. We got those little peepers going and once they were large enough to hold their own with Henrietta we had 21 chickens in a wonderful run and coop put together by Matthew and the kids.

Being that Henrietta is the oldest by at least 4-6 weeks we knew she'd start laying first. Sure enough, doing chores last night, I looked again in all the little spots that are good for laying an egg and voila, an egg. Can I just say there was a lot of hootin' and hollerin' going on last night. We are very excited. Tonight we're going to hard-boil the egg and split it so we each can have a little bite of our first egg.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008


On Sunday the kids and I walked in our town's parade. We were walking with our 4H club, handing out 4H information and candy. It was great fun. My folks and sister came up to watch the parade and assist with the transportation problem of starting the parade at one end of town with our vehicle and ending the parade at the complete opposite end of town without our vehicle. Mom and I finally figured out a plan that did not require us to walk all the way back to the beginning of the parade. Matthew is still out of town so it's nice to have their help in matters such as these. Also, it's always fun to be able to look for people you know while walking in the parade. Very fun. Here are some shots of the day.

Here we are walking up to Mom, Dad and Sally during the parade. Notice our lovely 4H shirts.

Apparently one of the parade units ahead of us was handing out flowers. This is what my dad decided to do with the flower. Nice.

After Isaiah and I finished our route we headed back to Mom, Dad, Sally and Anna and finished watching the parade.

I love this. I was taking the picture and Isaiah was watching this set of antique cars driving by, the cars were zig-zagging in the street back and forth. Well, I guess it appeared as though one of the cars was going to bump into me. I love how Isaiah is half worried and half laughing at the same time. Anna's sort of thinking , "Yikes".

This is just plain classic. Here we have Sally, Isaiah and Dad showing us their "eating very chewy candy" faces. Anna is very intent on the next parade unit. That's my mom. You can hardly even see the evidence of Bell's Palsy. Thanks again for all the prayers.

All in all it was a very fun day.

Monday, September 8, 2008

Elk Hunting

Dear Mr. Elk,
Be afraid, be very afraid.
Mrs. Rolli

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Flower Friend

As I was dead-heading the Chrysanthemum on our front steps, I found a friend. This little guy must like 'mums as well. He was all tucked up in amongst the flowers and leaves. I thought he was pretty cute.

I took a couple photos and noticed that he maybe doesn't like to have his picture taken. He hopped out of the flower pot in disgust and landed on the cement. No worries, I picked him up and tucked him back into the flowers. He looked rather annoyed with me so I left him alone after that. Sorry to disturb you little friend.

Art Barn

On Saturday Isaiah, Anna and myself, along with my mom and sister, Sally, went to the Art Barn. The Art Barn was having their annual Art Extravaganza in which you pay 5$ and have a whole slough of art projects to have fun making. We went last year while we were scoping out the area we wanted to move to. We had fun then and, now that we're locals, wanted to partake in the fun again.

My favorite station is the Raku pottery. The pottery is already made and fired and all we do is choose what we want to glaze, paint on the glaze and then the pottery professionals fire it again. Isaiah chose a stagecoach, Anna a turtle, Mom and Sally bowls and I chose a pencil holder. I love seeing what they look like after they come out of the wheelbarrow filled with sawdust. I think in traditional Raku the 2nd phase of the firing process is done in the ground.

We also did some dyeing of T-shirts. The dye was in spray bottles so it wasn't officially tie-dying, I thought it was more fun actually. Before the kids sprayed we added masking tape and foam shapes to act as a resist to the dye. After the shirts dried we took off the tape and foam and voila - a masterpiece.

After the shirt dying and pottery Isaiah and Anna made puppets, duct tape hats, got their faces painted, painted rocks and decorated bookmarks with golf balls rolled in paint. As the name of the day implies it IS an Art Extravaganza. It was lots of fun.

...Meanwhile Back at the Ranch

Dear Matthew,

I realize you have only been gone hunting since Tuesday. I'm fully aware you are not returning from New Mexico for at least another week, however, we've a slight security breech that requires your attention.

I'm fully aware you told me the chickens would be fine, until you returned, and would not require netting over their run. I know you thought they were young enough and happy enough to stay put. I'm sure this had nothing to do with your excitement over going hunting for two weeks nor did this have anything to do with your lack of time/interest/motivation for anything related to chickens.

I shall refrain from mentioning that when you offered to pick up chicken feed to last me the weeks you'd be gone and I said please get Starter/Grower, you "accidentally" only got Starter feed. I just won't sink to that level and mention that error on national public blogdom. I won't do it.

Anyhow, back to the breech in security. The "young" enough chickens have decided that when I open their run door in the morning and they fly hard enough they just make it over the fence. It is at this point they get stuck and cannot get back in the run. Thankfully they really want to get back in the run and I can corner them against the fence, grab them and boost them up and over the fence. Again, this is the same fence you said would not need any additional enclosing til you returned. (in case you forgot to which fence I referred)

Keep in mind that while wrangling these "too young too fly over the fence" chickens I'm also restraining a very willing Lab/Collie mix, named Matilda, who would just love to sink her teeth into this project and help.

After the commotion of boosting at least five chickens (I stopped counting after five) I decided I was so fed up with these foul that I said to heck with the fresh water you've enough to last the day. I'll do it tonight. I then finished feeding the chickens, I did grace them with food, although it's just Starter feed NOT Starter/Grower, but I said I wouldn't mention that. I then proceeded to shut up all the other doors and checked on the sheep one more time. Know what I saw? One lone hen helping the sheep grab up the oats they were missing themselves.

I have no idea when this particular hen escaped. I have no idea if she did this yesterday or this morning during the mass confusion. She may have been out there all night sleeping with the sheep in the lean-to for all I know. I stood there with my mouth wide open knowing full well I was not chasing a hen all around the pasture, especially a hen that appeared to want to be there. That hen will now and forever live in the pasture. I will let you handle her misconduct upon your return.

In closing, we are ready for you to return. The chickens have gotten completely out of control. It's mass chaos. I do not need to remind you what I did with the troublesome rooster in 2000. I have a .410 and I'm not afraid to use it.

I love you, have fun, shoot something big, be safe.

Love, me

ps I felt this incident worthy of a blog email rather then a personal email. I know you're able to read both. Just wanted to share the love a bit.

pps I know you appreciate the fact that I never mentioned how you bought Starter feed and not Starter/Grower feed. You can thank me when you get home.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

2nd Grade

My boy started 2nd grade this week. He looked old to me. Isaiah was a bit apprehensive. I think he thought the first day would be like his first day at this school last year. He started the year in Hudson and then got plopped into the new school in November. Not always the easiest thing from what I've heard. He ended up doing just fine last year but I'm sure the anxiety was still fresh in his mind.

This year, however, he was starting the first day of school right along with all of the other children in school. He'd know the ropes and some of the folks and all would be well. It was. He even started Spanish this year. Three times a week the elementary school Spanish teacher comes in and instructs on the Spanish language. I thought for sure Isaiah would be all over that one. I couldn't figure out why he'd be nervous and not excited. I found out at the end of the day, when he came home with relief and pride showing all over his face because he knew lots of the words that, Isaiah possibly thought Spanish class meant; all Spanish all the time. Poor kid. I didn't even think he'd feel that way. Missed the boat on that one. He survived though and was eager to hop on the bus yesterday and today.

While waiting for the bus we had to say our good-byes to Papa as well. Matthew is gone for awhile hunting in New Mexico so we're holding down the fort. I got a few shots of Matthew hanging out with the kiddos before we saw Isaiah get on the bus.

Also, my mom always took photos of my sister and I facing away from her with our backpacks on. She did this all through elementary school, on our first days. I have no idea why she did this so I thought, better be safe rather than sorry. I took a backpack shot of the kids. I suppose someday we'll look at those photos and say, "How cute, the backpack is bigger than you." I really don't know that there would be any other reason. Anyhow, I did it. They sort of look like walking backpacks from this viewpoint. Ha!