Thursday, January 31, 2013

I Need Therapy Thursday: Unethical Vet Practice Manager!

Fuming.

Steam blowing out of my ears.

I took our sweet old kitty Mamfy to the vet yesterday morning, as scheduled, for the extraction of an abscessed tooth.





























We had planned it last week, but I was never told how much the procedure cost.

I won't lie, I was SHOCKED when I dropped her off and they reviewed the cost of the procedure. Over FIVE HUNDRED DOLLARS!

But hey, all the costs looked on the up and up when they showed me the itemized invoice, and I knew she HAD to have the procedure, so what was I going to do? I gave them the required deposit of $150 and left her in their hands.

When I went in last night to pick her up, I asked if I could pay another $150 at that time and the balance next week.

The secretary checked with the practice manager (by phone) and told me I could pay half of the balance at the time, and leave them a post-dated check for the rest, but if I did that,

THEY WOULD NOT SEND HOME ANY OF HER MEDICATIONS!

So wait, I said. You're telling me if I don't pay the balance in full, right here and now, you would send my elderly cat home, after just having several teeth pulled, with NO antibiotics or pain meds?

Well, yes. We did review the charges with you this morning, and you signed off.

Yes, and I'm not disputing the cost, although quite frankly I think it is exceedingly high. I'm just asking if I could pay a part of the bill next week.

We can't do that.

Are you aware that I have been a client here for over ten years, and that I bring roughly a billion animals into this practice?

Yes, I can see that you have quite a number of animals.

And my account is in good standing? We've paid you thousands upon thousands of dollars over the years, always on time?

Yes.

And yet you're going to tell me that if I don't pay you every cent right now, you will send my cat home without medicine? Do you have any idea how unethical that is?

I'm just the messenger.

Yeah, I know.  How about if you messenge back to your practice manager that this is sickening? I am truly disgusted right now. I am not disputing the charges. I am not asking for a reduced fee. I am simply asking for you to allow me to pay you some today, and the rest next week. But you're going to hold my cat as ransom. This is not how a vet's office should be conducting business, especially not with a loyal client with an excellent payment history.





Of course, this whole conversation is paraphrased, but that's the gist.

And of course I paid them every red cent.

They may be comfortable sending an animal home post-surgery without meds, but I'm not.

Guess the kids will have to make their peace with Ramen till next payday.



I don't know, am I out of line?

I mean, I could see if I just walked in the door and they didn't know me from Adam, but shouldn't my history with them count for something?

We would keep them in the black if all they saw was just my lab Sunny, but for those of you new here, I have six dogs and four cats, plus farm animals that they see.
I spend a small fortune in this practice. For all the small animals, I pay in full at the time of visits, the farm animal visits are billed to me and we pay when we get the bill. In full.

Tell me I'm crazy.
Or tell me the practice manager is unethical.

Your call....

















************

Read it.
Like it?
Follow it.
Please?
Thanks.
(Follow my blog by adding yourself as a follower with Google Friends Connect in my sidebar!)


***************************

Don't forget, I will love you forever if you throw me a vote on Top Mommy Blogs. You know the drill by now, don't you? Just click the juggling chick and you've voted. You can vote every day till like, forever.

Top Mommy Blogs - Click To Vote!

Thanks!



***************

In case you didn't know it, I'm like the queen of blog-hoppin' lately. It's kind of like square dancing but without the dated outfits, smelly gym, and elderly caller.  Check out my schedule in my sidebar and come join the fun!



*************

Rudeness disclaimer:

I love all your comments,
I read every one!
But I can't hit 'reply',
I've no time for fun.
Please don't judge me,
Please don't hate.
If you have a question that just can't wait,
Send me an email at farmbeachgal@yahoo.com,
And I'll answer right back because I'm, you know, the Mom.

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Wordless Wednesday

Love this picture of a bird that James drew using a 3-d effect. Cool, right???








































************

Read it.
Like it?
Follow it.
Please?
Thanks.
(Follow my blog by adding yourself as a follower with Google Friends Connect in my sidebar!)


***************************


Don't forget, I will love you forever if you throw me a vote on Top Mommy Blogs. You know the drill by now, don't you? Just click the juggling chick and you've voted. You can vote every day till like, forever.

Top Mommy Blogs - Click To Vote!

Thanks!



***************

Take a look at my full hoppin' schedule in my sidebar, and come join the fun!

*************

Rudeness disclaimer:

I love all your comments,
I read every one!
But I can't hit 'reply',
I've no time for fun.
Please don't judge me,
Please don't hate.
If you have a question that just can't wait,
Send me an email at farmbeachgal@yahoo.com,
And I'll answer right back because I'm, you know, the Mom.

Monday, January 28, 2013

Mirth Monday






































Image source: charley mccoy via Pinterest



************

Read it.
Like it?
Follow it.
Please?
Thanks.
(Follow my blog by adding yourself as a follower with Google Friends Connect in my sidebar!)


***************************


Don't forget, I will love you forever if you throw me a vote on Top Mommy Blogs. You know the drill by now, don't you? Just click the juggling chick and you've voted. You can vote every day till like, forever.

Top Mommy Blogs - Click To Vote!

Thanks!

***************

In case you didn't know it, I'm like the queen of blog-hoppin' lately. It's kind of like square dancing but without the dated outfits, smelly gym, and elderly caller. You can find my full schedule in my sidebar, come join the fun!


****************

Rudeness disclaimer:

I love all your comments,
I read every one!
But I can't hit 'reply',
I've no time for fun.
Please don't judge me,
Please don't hate.
If you have a question that just can't wait,
Send me an email at farmbeachgal@yahoo.com,
And I'll answer right back because I'm, you know, the Mom.





Sunday, January 27, 2013

Inspiration Sunday






































Image source: Amy Youtz via Pinterest



************


Read it.
Like it?
Follow it.
Please?
Thanks.
(Follow my blog by adding yourself as a follower with Google Friends Connect in my sidebar!)


***************************


Don't forget, I will love you forever if you throw me a vote on Top Mommy Blogs. You know the drill by now, don't you? Just click the juggling chick and you've voted. You can vote every day till like, forever.

Top Mommy Blogs - Click To Vote!

Thanks!


****************

Check my sidebar to see where I'm hoppin' today and everyday!

*****************

Rudeness disclaimer:

I love all your comments,
I read every one!
But I can't hit 'reply',
I've no time for fun.
Please don't judge me,
Please don't hate.
If you have a question that just can't wait,
Send me an email at farmbeachgal@yahoo.com,
And I'll answer right back because I'm, you know, the Mom.





Saturday, January 26, 2013

Oh No You Didn't. Oh Yes I Did.

It was a quiet and cozy movie night.

We were enjoying an oldie but a goodie: pre-Parkinsonian Michael J Fox in Back to the Future.

I had made Rice Krispie Treats earlier.














And so there we were, reclined in a semi-vegetative state. All snuggled up in the dark on the sofa, watchin' the movie, eatin' our Treats.

Something fell on my shirt. A bit of Rice Krispie Treat, no doubt.



Picture the rest of this scenario in slow motion, if you will.



I picked it up off my shirt.

Crispy. Small.

I popped it in my mouth.

I bit down.

And although it was crunchy, it was NOT a bit of Rice Krispie Treat.

It was a stink bug.




















Immediately the worst taste-slash-smell filled my mouth, my nasal passages, my eyes.

Even my ears tasted it.

What followed was a series of convulsions and spitting and speaking in tongues in an effort to rid my mouth of the malodorous invader.

I think my head may have spun around once or twice.

I considered biting off my own tongue.

The kids didn't know what was going on as I writhed and drooled and flung myself around the room.

I was vaguely aware of my children throwing around the words epilepsy and exorcism, and a vision popped into my head of a man with dark eyes in a long black cloak splashing holy water on me and yelling, "The power of Christ compels you!"

In a flash of lucidity, I hurled myself into the bathroom where I spit and rinsed and gargled and downed mouthwash like a frat boy at a hazing.

My kids finally talked me down from my crazed ablations.  Like those scenes in the movies where the passionate doctor is frantically doing chest compressions through a screen of tears, and all the residents and interns and nurses have to pull him away, gently telling him, he's gone, Doug, he's gone.  And he hangs his head and turns away and then just as he gets to the door, he screams, "Nooooo!" and he runs back and starts thumping on the patients's chest.

Yeah, we went through that loop two or three times.

Somehow I got through the rest of the night.  In the morning a new day dawned, and I slipped back into my routine of life.

Eventually the smell and the taste faded, though it took some time before it left completely.

I'm not sure what else to say about the Stink Bug Episode.  I am broken.

And I shall never be able to look at another Rice Krispie Treat.

I have Post Traumatic Stink Bug Disorder.

PTSBD.

I need therapy.

But you already knew that, didn't you.....







Image sources: orkin.com, ricekrispies.com


***********

Don't forget, I will love you forever if you throw me a vote on Top Mommy Blogs. You know the drill by now, don't you? Just click the juggling chick and you've voted. You can vote every day till like, forever.

Top Mommy Blogs - Click To Vote!

Thanks!


*************

Check out my blog-hoppin' schedule in my sidebar, and come join the fun!

*************

Rudeness disclaimer:

I love all your comments,
I read every one!
But I can't hit 'reply',
I've no time for fun.
Please don't judge me,
Please don't hate.
If you have a question that just can't wait,
Send me an email at farmbeachgal@yahoo.com,
And I'll answer right back because I'm, you know, the Mom.





Friday, January 25, 2013

A Lab? Never Again.

This is a piece I posted some time ago, but thought I would dust it off and throw it up again.

Because we are currently fighting yet another of Sunny's infamous ear infections.


*********************


Sunny is only 4 years old. The prime of her life. Should be the picture of health. Instead I have this dog who chews herself to the point of oozing and whose sizable ears seem to take turns getting infections.
Sunny's latest ailment was a huge hematoma in her ear. Her ear looked like a giant engorged tick. In order to save yet another costly trip to the vet, I talked Fred into bringing a syringe home so he could drain it himself.

It did not go well. Blood and body fluids, a yelping, twisting 95 pound dog and a frustrated and disgusted surgeon-turned-vet does not make a pretty picture. And of course, like the Gulf oil geyser, the thing refilled in no time flat. Took her to the vet finally, piggy-backing her onto my regularly scheduled appointment with another dog and two cats, and the vet said to leave it alone and it might go away. Which, I think, is Fred's philosphy with our animals in general. But, like the philosophy, the vet's theory didn't work. The thing kept getting bigger. And bigger.

She finally got to the point where she was walking around with her head held sideways. Whether from discomfort or the actual weight of the thing I don't know. But we bit the bullet and scheduled the surgery. More than $600 later, and armed with a bag full to bursting with medications, I walked out the door with her in one of those E-collars. The vet told me she might bump into things for awhile, but there was a learning curve and she would soon get the hang of it. Thing of it is, Sunny's learning curve is more like a flat line, so she pretty much continuously walks into doorways and flips over kitchen stools.






Less than a week later we were back at the vet's because she managed to develop yet another ear infection
while she was on antibiotics.
They removed her bandage and gave me more antibiotics, a topical spray, and drops to put inside her ear.
She's still bumping into things and scraping everyone's legs and her collar is now duct-taped because she managed to rip the plastic from catching it on stuff so often.
Hey, at least she can't chew her legs right now.
And, if I want to remain positive, she has matured to the point where she pretty much only chews on herself, which is a good thing. In her younger days, she has been know to chew up pool noodles, hoses, pricey water pumps, and the siding on our house. I can truly say I have a dog who eats us out of house and home.

Marley's got nothin' on Sunny.

















************

Oooooh, how nice, this post was a favorite on the Farm Girl Friday blog hop!

Thanks, my peeps!


************

Take my mind off my canine problems by voting for me on Top Mommy Blogs!
You know the drill by now, don't you?
Just click the juggling chick and you've voted. You can vote every day till like, forever.

Top Mommy Blogs - Click To Vote!

Thanks!



***************

Take a look at my full hoppin' schedule in my sidebar, and come join the fun!

*************

Rudeness disclaimer:

I love all your comments,
I read every one!
But I can't hit 'reply',
I've no time for fun.
Please don't judge me,
Please don't hate.
If you have a question that just can't wait,
Send me an email at farmbeachgal@yahoo.com,
And I'll answer right back because I'm, you know, the Mom.

Thursday, January 24, 2013

I-Need-Therapy-Thursday: Define...Weird

This is a post from my old blog. Since I said in a recent post that, "my kids scare the bejesus out of the neighborhood kids", I thought I should provide a little backstory for perspective.

So here you are...






My kids are weird.



There. I've said it.



I don't have a dictionary in front of me and don't feel like looking up an on-line one, but I do have a thesaurus on my desk



That's right. I have a thesaurus. I'm a kinda-sorta writer. Uh, huh.



and the entries following the word weird are:



bizarre, strange, odd, fantastic, unearthly, otherworldly, alien, supernatural, mysterious, outlandish, nightmarish, surrealistic, Kafkaesque

(??????)

peculiar, queer, grotesque, eerie, freaky

(my favorite)

uncanny, unusual.



I would say most of these words could be used to describe my brood of freaky outlandish children.



A few examples:

James: Jumping off the porch roof into a snow bank while yelling, "There goes Hollywood".

Bella: Eating her pizza with Nutella, or ketchup on an apple.

Patrick: "I'm Old Greeeeeeggggggg!".

Daniel: Naming his crossword puzzle Meat With Stick..

Julie: Yelling "Tractorrrrr!" when someone passes gas.

Rosie: Taking perfect care of her braces. I think she's messing with my head.

Fred: "Mind bringing me a soda? Thanks. Just get me my "special glass" sitting on the top right-hand corner of the coal stove, place two ice cubes in it, and then fill the glass 2/3 to 3/4 full, taking care to pour slowly. If it's no trouble...."

Me: 6 kids, 6 dogs, 4 cats, 1 hamster, 1 cockatiel, 2 bunnies, 3 horses, 5 goats, countless chickens....



Round here, we're used to it and mostly just laugh it off, or more often than not, their fantasticness doesn't even register, as it has become so commonplace.



It generally takes a visitor among us to awaken us to the bizarre ways of our offspring.



Take for example, the time about a year ago, give or take, when the little girl from across the street joined us for dinner.



She's a quiet girl, is "A", as I'll call her. The only child of a profoundly button-down family. Their lawn is mowed roughly twice a day and is adorned by four shrubs and one ornamental tree. They have a pocket-sized dog, well-groomed.

A herself is also well-groomed, shirts ironed and tucked in, hair neatly trimmed and pulled back in a fine-looking ponytail. Nice girl, A.



She and my girls, all roughly the same age, had struck up a semi-friendship, somewhat restrained and orderly.



One day, after playing outside for a bit, my kids were called into dinner. They asked if A could join us. I said

but of course!



In they all sauntered, washed their hands, and sat down to the dinner table.



A sat on the bench, and had to scoot first this way and then that, as more and more kids piled onto said bench. They finally all settled, shoulder-to-shoulder, famished and ready to chow down.



I believe burgers were on the menu that night. And the burgers started one of our not so atypical dinner conversations.



It went something like this.....



James: Burgers? Ewww. Is meat. Is disgusting.

Patrick: Why is it disgusting?

Me: James, that's rude to say your dinner is disgusting.

James: Sorry. Tank you for dinner. But meat. Meat is disgusting. Is animal.

Patrick: Yeah, but you like chicken and chickens are animals.

James: I know but meat is red. Red is blood. I can't eat this.

Everyone talking at once: Yeah but we've GOT to eat! Besides, other animals eat us if they have the chance, like tigers and sharks. So we eat them. It's FAIR!

James: I don't care. Is disgusting.

Someone: People are animals. We could eat each other. Who would I eat...?

Me: Whom would you eat. Use proper grammer.

Daniel: I wouldn't eat Dad, that would be gross. No offense, Dad.

Dad: None taken.

Patrick: Same with Mom.

Me: Oh, thank the Lord.

Someone: What about Y?

Someone else: Nah. Too stringy.

Rosie: How 'bout Bella? She would taste good!

Everyone: Yeah, Bella! She would be the best one to eat.

Daniel: Or how 'bout Sophie? (referring to our Boston Terrier/Beagle mix)

Everyone: Yeah, Sophie! She would be delicious! Let's eat her for dinner! No not dinner -- dessert. She would taste like cupcakes....



At about this point in time, I caught a glance of A. She sat squished between our evil spawn, looking about as wide-eyed and petrified as a bunny in a bush with a fox on its trail. She had the burger halfway to her mouth, jaw frozen in an open position, at one point preparing to take a bite of her dinner, but now likely primed to scream in holy terror. I think in her mind she was weighing her options:

1) Make a break for it by leaping onto the dinner table with a manic martial arts screech and scrambling out of there with dishes flying.

2) Freezing in place, hoping against all odds to blend in, and then slowly creeping the hell out of our house when people dispersed.



She chose the latter. I don't think anyone heard a peep out of her. Though even if she had said something, it's doubtful anyone would have noticed, what with the cacophonous

there's that thesaurus at work again

conversation taking place about who would eat who(sorry, whom).



Dinner over, she slipped silently from our house and back across the street.



I still see her once in awhile, peering from behind a curtain towards our house. Or riding her bike up and down her driveway while casting leery glances our direction. Or peeking out from behind a just-pruned shrub, eyeballing the bikes thrown down haphazardly in the driveway, the scattered sidewalk chalk, the assortment of basketballs and kickballs and scooters. She counts the children. She listens closely, analytically to the screams, no doubt trying to discern: screams of fun? Or

screams of terror?



I'm sure she must be wondering what

or who

is on the menu.





************

Read it.
Like it?
Follow it.
Please?
Thanks.
(Follow my blog by adding yourself as a follower with Google Friends Connect in my sidebar!)


***************************


Don't forget, I will love you forever if you throw me a vote on Top Mommy Blogs. You know the drill by now, don't you? Just click the juggling chick and you've voted. You can vote every day till like, forever.

Top Mommy Blogs - Click To Vote!

Thanks!



***************

In case you didn't know it, I'm like the queen of blog-hoppin' lately. It's kind of like square dancing but without the dated outfits, smelly gym, and elderly caller.  Check out my schedule in my sidebar and come join the fun!



*************

Rudeness disclaimer:

I love all your comments,
I read every one!
But I can't hit 'reply',
I've no time for fun.
Please don't judge me,
Please don't hate.
If you have a question that just can't wait,
Send me an email at farmbeachgal@yahoo.com,
And I'll answer right back because I'm, you know, the Mom.

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Wordless Wednesday

Julie keeps a notebook in which she writes down snippets of song lyrics that she likes. She writes them, she doodles, and it all results in adorable teen girl artwork. Here is a sampling....



















































************

I'm glad you came.
I'm glad you voted for me on Top Mommy Blogs!
You know the drill by now, don't you?
Just click the juggling chick and you've voted. You can vote every day till like, forever.

Top Mommy Blogs - Click To Vote!

Thanks!



***************

Take a look at my full hoppin' schedule in my sidebar, and come join the fun!

*************

Rudeness disclaimer:

I love all your comments,
I read every one!
But I can't hit 'reply',
I've no time for fun.
Please don't judge me,
Please don't hate.
If you have a question that just can't wait,
Send me an email at farmbeachgal@yahoo.com,
And I'll answer right back because I'm, you know, the Mom.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

TALU Tips

I've had a couple people ask me questions about the blog hop I co-host, the Tuesday Archive Link-Up.

Here are the answers.

Q) How often can I participate in this link up?
A) Every Tuesday. The link goes live at about 5:30am.

Q) I don't have any new posts, so I have nothing to link up!
A) Well, that's not really a question, but I'll address it anyway, lol.

This link-up is specifically geared towards older posts, so start looking back in time at some of your older ones.  Some people like to post something that happened one year ago on this date (give or take), some like to go with an opposite season (chase those winter blues away by linking up a summery post), some are inspired to link based on their mood du jour.  It's up to you!  All that being said, if you're new to blogging, don't feel excluded.  Just go ahead and link.  We've all been newbies once!

Q) I can't seem to get my image linked, though I'm not having any trouble with the post itself.
A) Let me go through the steps for you,  Use this to check yourself against what you're doing.
I actually linked up two posts today, just so I could review the steps.  Don't want to mislead you with inaccurate info!

1) At the bottom of all the linked posts, it says, "You are next.... Click here to enter", with that last part in blue. Click anywhere on the blue part and that will take you to the linky page.

2) Where it says "Link to", put the url address of the blog page you would like to link up. Please note that the box already has "http://" in there already, so you might have to erase that before putting your own link in.

3) Caption/title: type in the title of your post.

4) Email: type in your email address.

5) Name: type in your name.

6) For the image, you have a couple of options. I always choose "auto crop my image", and I would advise you to do the same, to keep things simple.

7) Next it asks you to get an image, and here I always click "From web". Once you do that, it will take you to a page that has all the images from the blog page you are linking up. Simply click on the one you wish to use and you should be set. For some of the posts I've linked, there were no images, so I just clicked on my own picture, or my blog header, so at least I'll have some image in my link square instead of a blank.


And voila, you're all linked up.

Hope this helps!  Let me know if you have any other questions.
Happy linking!

TALU Tuesday

Hello everyone, welcome back, or welcome for the first time to...



TALU Tuesday!

That's right, the Tuesday Archive Link-Up.

Time to pull your treasured old posts out of those cobwebby archives, dust them off, and give them new life where they will be seen and enjoyed by untold millions OK, thousands of viewers.

See, this link-up is hosted by several people, who, all together have thousands upon thousands of followers. So when you link your post up with this party? Your post will show up on all their blogs, to all of their followers.

All you've got to do is:


1) link up your post using the linky tool below,

2) visit the hosts and leave a comment to say hi, if you'd like,

3) and try to visit three or more of the blogs linked up and leave a comment. They'll all be doing the same, so it's like a giant hippie love fest. Bring your own flowers.







Oh and when you comment? Put in the secret code "TALU" (Tuesday Archive Link-Up) and then give a little wink so we'll all know what you're talking about.

Have fun!



Now here are your TALU hosts, wonderful gals every one....


Jennifer, author of I Am Not Superwoman

Anne, author of Life On The Funny Farm

Debbie, author of Wrinkled Mommy










************

Read it.
Like it?
Follow it.
Please?
Thanks.
(Follow my blog by adding yourself as a follower with Google Friends Connect in my sidebar!)


***************************


Don't forget, I will love you forever if you throw me a vote on Top Mommy Blogs. You know the drill by now, don't you? Just click the juggling chick and you've voted. You can vote every day till like, forever.

Top Mommy Blogs - Click To Vote!

Thanks!



***************

Come take a look at my full hoppin' schedule in my sidebar, and come join the fun!

*************

Rudeness disclaimer:

I love all your comments,
I read every one!
But I can't hit 'reply',
I've no time for fun.
Please don't judge me,
Please don't hate.
If you have a question that just can't wait,
Send me an email at farmbeachgal@yahoo.com,
And I'll answer right back because I'm, you know, the Mom.

Monday, January 21, 2013

Mirth Monday





























Image source: Amanda Cherry via Pinterest



************

Read it.
Like it?
Follow it.
Please?
Thanks.
(Follow my blog by adding yourself as a follower with Google Friends Connect in my sidebar!)


***************************


Don't forget, I will love you forever if you throw me a vote on Top Mommy Blogs. You know the drill by now, don't you? Just click the juggling chick and you've voted. You can vote every day till like, forever.

Top Mommy Blogs - Click To Vote!

Thanks!

***************

In case you didn't know it, I'm like the queen of blog-hoppin' lately. It's kind of like square dancing but without the dated outfits, smelly gym, and elderly caller. You can find my full schedule in my sidebar, come join the fun!


****************

Rudeness disclaimer:

I love all your comments,
I read every one!
But I can't hit 'reply',
I've no time for fun.
Please don't judge me,
Please don't hate.
If you have a question that just can't wait,
Send me an email at farmbeachgal@yahoo.com,
And I'll answer right back because I'm, you know, the Mom.





Sunday, January 20, 2013

Inspiration Sunday














































Image source: Faith Marcus Designs via Pinterest




************


Read it.
Like it?
Follow it.
Please?
Thanks.
(Follow my blog by adding yourself as a follower with Google Friends Connect in my sidebar!)


***************************


Don't forget, I will love you forever if you throw me a vote on Top Mommy Blogs. You know the drill by now, don't you? Just click the juggling chick and you've voted. You can vote every day till like, forever.

Top Mommy Blogs - Click To Vote!

Thanks!


****************

Check my sidebar to see where I'm hoppin' today and everyday!

*****************

Rudeness disclaimer:

I love all your comments,
I read every one!
But I can't hit 'reply',
I've no time for fun.
Please don't judge me,
Please don't hate.
If you have a question that just can't wait,
Send me an email at farmbeachgal@yahoo.com,
And I'll answer right back because I'm, you know, the Mom.



Saturday, January 19, 2013

Chicken-Scratch-Saturday: Swimsuits and Mittens

I know I'm posting this tip a little late in the season, but better late than never I always say.

I keep one of those Rubbermaid bins in my coat room/mud room. It has three big drawers in it.

In the summer, the drawers holds all the bathing suits and cover ups. One drawer for Mom and Dad, one for the boys, and one for the girls.

In the winter, I switch them all out so that one drawer holds mittens and gloves, one holds scarves, and one holds hats.

Every time I do the switch-over, I check for stuff that's outgrown, ripped and torn, or missing its mitten-mate. Then I throw away and donate accordingly, and store the rest up in the attic.

I also keep one of those laundry-drying racks and a bunch of clothespins in the same room, and it sees use both summer and winter. In the summer, we hang our wet bathing suits on it, and in the winter, we hang our wet gloves and hats.



Hope this helps!



********************


Don't forget to vote for me on Top Mommy Blogs! Just click on this brown button with the juggling chick. You can vote every day till like, forever.

Top Mommy Blogs - Click To Vote!

Thanks!


***************

In case you didn't know it, I'm like the queen of blog-hoppin' lately. It's kind of like square dancing but without the dated outfits, smelly gym, and elderly caller.

Check out my full schedule over in my sidebar, and come join the fun!

*************

Rudeness disclaimer:

I love all your comments,
I read every one!
But I can't hit 'reply',
I've no time for fun.
Please don't judge me,
Please don't hate.
If you have a question that just can't wait,
Send me an email at farmbeachgal@yahoo.com,
And I'll answer right back because I'm, you know, the Mom.

Friday, January 18, 2013

Farm Friday: Living the Dream Life


I get a lot of awesome comments from my awesome readers.

I'm sure they must be here for the skillful and poetic writing (see above sentence).



Anyway, one comment I get a good bit is something along the lines of
"You're living my dream life".

And it is a dream life for many people. Myself included.

But if I'm going to be a responsible blogger, I think I need to point out a few of the less-than romantic realities of hobby farming.

Because it's not all gathering wildflowers in a sunny field or walking through pristine bedding to collect fresh eggs in a vintage basket.

So if you're picturing Laura Ingalls in a Massengil commercial, I think it's time for me to paint you a new picture.























In fact, let me give you a little quiz on this "dream life", and we'll see how you fare.


Rats


If you have a farm, they will come.

So let me ask you, when you hear the word 'rat', do you picture

a:
























Head straight to your nearest Petco and get yourself a little cage and a hamster. That's as close as you should get to farming.


b:

















Buy a horse and board it at someone else's farm.



or c:




















Get you some barn cats and a rat terrier. You're ready.






Mud

No one is quite sure of the science behind it, but farms seem to generate mud. Lots of it. So again, I ask, when you hear 'mud', do you picture

a:



















Buying your eggs and veggies from a farmer's market is as near as you should get to farming.






b:



















Not even close.




or c:























Yeah.  That's about it.  Get a snorkel and come on down.






Decision-Making

Living on a farm, you sometimes have to make tough decisions.
For instance, if you see a mangy, skanky-looking fox skulking around your barn for a few days, and then one day you find him curled up in the corner DEAD, do you





















a:
Cry a little, offer up a prayer to the god of wildlife, and bury him under your prize rosebush?

b:
Cut off his head and stick it in the mail?
AS ADVISED BY THE DEPARTMENT OF FISH AND WILDLIFE, I AM NOT MAKING THIS UP PEOPLE!!!!

or c:
Scoop him up with a shovel and ditch him in the thicket and marshes under cover of night, a la Jimmy Hoffa?



I still can't talk about it.





Preparedness

If you were to live on a farm, which of the following would you be physically, mentally, and emotionally prepared to do?

a: sexually violate your hen with mineral oil and rubber gloves when, in your chicken ignorance, you mistake broodiness for being egg-bound.

b: Scrub out dirty water buckets.

c: Scrub out dirty water buckets in which you have picked out drowned rats.

d: Scoop manure till your back breaks.

e: Track said manure into your house, as if you didn't have enough to clean up already.

f: Castrate ram-lambs and bucklings with your very own Elastrator.

g: Fix fences and gates while your household projects remain on the to-do list.

h: Spend $300 on a hay delivery while you feed your kids Ramen till payday.

i: Pull #$!*ing burrs out of manes and tails till your fingers bleed.

j: Massage the udders and nipples of mastitic does and ewes and mares.

k: All of the above and much, much more.



If you answered "c" in the rats, mud, and decision making portions of the test, and "k" in the preparedness section, you might be ready to buy the farm.



But just one more word of caution:

While you'll find there's a little of this in farming:




























There's a heck of a lot more of this:



























And believe me when I tell you, if that's the worst I ever looked doing the dirty work of farming, I would be thrilled.




But go ahead.  Get some chickens.  Maybe a few goats. 

Live the dream.





















Just don't say I didn't warn you....










Image sources: shutterstock.com, istockphoto.com, equinaturaledits.blogspot.com, nfws.org.uk, saviortpc.com, sodahead.com, animal.discovery.com, stylecraze.com, yesspaces.com, 123rf.com

************

Read it.
Like it?
Follow it.
Please?
Thanks.
(Follow my blog by adding yourself as a follower with Google Friends Connect in my sidebar!)


***************************


Don't forget, I will love you forever if you throw me a vote on Top Mommy Blogs. You know the drill by now, don't you? Just click the juggling chick and you've voted. You can vote every day till like, forever.

Top Mommy Blogs - Click To Vote!

Thanks!

***************

In case you didn't know it, I'm like the queen of blog-hoppin' lately. It's kind of like square dancing but without the dated outfits, smelly gym, and elderly caller. You can find my full schedule in my sidebar, come join the fun!


****************

Rudeness disclaimer:

I love all your comments,
I read every one!
But I can't hit 'reply',
I've no time for fun.
Please don't judge me,
Please don't hate.
If you have a question that just can't wait,
Send me an email at farmbeachgal@yahoo.com,
And I'll answer right back because I'm, you know, the Mom.

Thursday, January 17, 2013

I-Need-Therapy-Thursday: Birthdays Aren't Always a Party


Birthdays come and birthdays go.

Some rock.

Some are ...meh.

I just celebrated my 48th this past weekend, and it was pretty nice. Quiet. Sweet gifts from everyone. Out to dinner. So, you know, no cooking.

It put me in mind, as recent birthdays always do, of my worst birthday EVER.

It took place four years ago, a mere four days after James and Julie arrived home.

Please to read....

























I like to think I don't need a big fuss over my birthday. If I get a couple cards, a call or two, if my kids remember to tell me happy birthday, I'm a pretty happy gal. And if I don't have to cook dinner. But my birthday yesterday had to be the worst in my ever-expanding history.



You're probably thinking, how can she complain about her BD when she had the two best gifts anyone could hope for arrive a mere 4 days earlier? Well let me paint you the picture of how my day unfolded .....

Poor Me ...

To start, Fred called me from work the night before to say he had to take an unexpected call night. Since he usually initiates card-making with the kids, they didn't think of it on their own, so I awoke on my BD morning feeling a tad not remembered. No cards from Fred or the kids, and most of the morning getting the kids ready for school went by before Rosie, bless her, realized what day it was. At that point I got lots of sweet hugs and well-wishes and my spirits lifted.

Midnight Sun Has Set

However, later in the morning, things took a serious downturn. I went out to the barn to check on my pony. I had been concerned about him lately. He had been dropping a lot of weight, despite my efforts at preparing a slurry of warm water, equine senior feed, dried beet pulp and corn oil. He was pretty old, and his teeth were in really bad shape, so it was hard for him to get the nutrition in. He also had something else going on, which we couldn't pinpoint, and the bloodwork we had drawn months earlier hadn't shown anything. So when I got out there, I found him down on the ground, and he couldn't get up. I covered him up and went in to call the vet. He arrived about 1/2 hour later and examined him, but couldn't find anything obvious, but he said he saw evidence that his liver was failing him. He said we needed to act pretty quickly, as he was in distress. I had to make a decision whether to start treating him aggressively or put him down. Since I knew he was old (around 30) and I knew that whatever we could "fix" on an emergency basis wouldn't change the fact that his teeth were so bad he couldn't take in enough nutrition, I decided to have him put to sleep. So there I stood in the cold on my birthday morning as the vet shaved Midnight's neck, found the vein, and injected the mixture that would ease him into a peaceful death. The knowledge that you're "doing the right thing" and "easing his suffering" somehow fails to make you feel better as you watch you beloved little pony of 15 years die before your eyes.

From Bad to Worse

But as bad as it was watching him die, it was possibly even worse when it came time to get him on the trailer. I had made a few phone calls and was able to find someone to do the job of trailering him to New Bolton Vet Hospital, where they would do a necropsy. Since the trailer was pretty big, it was determined that the best way to get him on the rig would be to take him through the backyard and up the driveway to get him to the trailer. How do you get a dead pony through the backyard and up the driveway? You put him on a tarp and drag him, that's how. So I'll say it again, on the morning of my birthday, with the help of two other women, I am dragging my pony's body across my driveway and out to the street. Of course James and Julie are there for the whole thing. They didn't have a chance to get to know him, but I think they were sad that I was sad. Sweet Julie gave me lots of hugs throughout the day and James tried to cheer me up in his own way, too. Later I did my best to communicate to them to not tell the kids. I didn't want them telling the kids as they got off the bus, "Po-nee" and then pantomiming his death by rolling their eyes back in their heads and lolling their tongues out. They finally got what I was trying to tell them, to keep it "secret" and let Mama tell.

Running the Hamster Wheel

I finally settled enough to give them a little "schkola" time to work on some English. That helped pass the time for me. Once the kids got home, they all played for while till it was time for our crazy-busy afternoon/evening schedule. I took Rosie and Daniel to CCD, then got home and heated up leftovers ("leftovers, whaaaaaaah!") for the four at home (Fred still wasn't home yet). An hour later, I was ready to leave to pick up Rosie and Daniel. The plan had been, I would take Rosie to our once-a-month Mother-Dtr Book Club at the school, and Daniel would come with and just hang out. Fred would take Patrick to the school for the Geography Bee he was in, and he would have the rest of the crew with him. However, when I told James and Julie I was leaving, that they would go with Papa to the school, Julie was very upset. She didn't throw a tantrum or anything, but she seemed quite traumatized by the idea of me leaving w/o her. So I changed the plans last minute and took James and Julie with me. I picked up Rosie and Daniel, got them some Mickey D's on the way to the school, and got there without further incident. Everyone at book club was delighted by the two new additions to my family and I happily and proudly answered all their questions. Julie seemed a bit overwhelmed but did fine, sitting by me in the circle during the meeting, while James and Daniel played with blocks in the back of the room. When the meeting ended, some of the kids were drawing on the chalkboard and white board while the Moms gathered up their things. Coat in hand, I had told my kids to erase what they had drawn and come along so we could go down the hall to see how Patrick was doing in his geography bee. At that moment, Rosie came screaming across the room, eyes shut tight, saying James had sprayed dry erase board cleaner in her eyes. I dropped everything and ran her to the sink where we started flushing her eyes. I asked someone to grab the bottle and read me what it said to do if it gets in the eyes. Poor Rosie is crying, everyone is fluttering around, we're both soaking wet, and I'm just thinking, Oy.  James keeps telling me in Russian he thought it was "vada".

Enough

SO after flushing her eyes for what seemed like three hours, we finally dried off a bit, gathered our things (again) and went down the hall to the auditorium. I saw Fred and gestured for him to come out so he could assess Rosie's eyes, which he said seemed OK. Julie at this point had simply had ENOUGH and was glued to my side. Rosie chose to stay so she could sit with her Poppy and watch the rest of the Bee, but I took the others and headed for home. Got everyone to brush their teeth and hit their beds, but Julie was not happy about it and kept crying. I consoled her best I could, but kept firm that it was bedtime. Then Bella pops in front of me all bright-eyed reminding me it's her night for "special reading" (each kid gets one-on-one time once a week and it was her night). Exhausted, I just about cried at this point, and told her we wouldn't be able to do it tonight, but I would try to make it up to her. So she hung her head and dragged her feet down the hallway to her room, all sad.

Light at the End of the Tunnel

Fred finally got home about 9:30 and we got the other two kids to bed, then he heated up the last of the leftovers and proceeded to eat dinner (he was pretty much starving at this point). He had a beautiful card for me and a gift card for a spa. Perfect gift or what? Then I got to relive my misery as I recounted the tale of Midnight's passing, as this was the first chance I had to tell him all day.

A Smile at the End of the Day

Finally the day was over and we headed to bed. I found a beautiful posterboard card that Rosie had lovingly made for me after the end of HER long day, and gotten anyone who was still awake to sign. She had also turned down my covers, and put my book, booklight, and reading glasses on the bed for me. So at the end of a long day filled with more downs than ups, I got into my comfy bed feeling exhausted, but also fulfilled and loved. And what more could you really want on your birthday?





Image source: swamp.org



************

Read it.
Like it?
Follow it.
Please?
Thanks.
(Follow my blog by adding yourself as a follower with Google Friends Connect in my sidebar!)


***************************


And I will thank you if you throw me a vote on Top Mommy Blogs. You know the drill by now, don't you? Just click the juggling chick and you've voted. You can vote every day till like, forever.

Top Mommy Blogs - Click To Vote!

Thanks!

***************

In case you didn't know it, I'm like the queen of blog-hoppin' lately. It's kind of like square dancing but without the dated outfits, smelly gym, and elderly caller. You can find my full schedule in my sidebar, come join the fun!


****************

Rudeness disclaimer:

I love all your comments,
I read every one!
But I can't hit 'reply',
I've no time for fun.
Please don't judge me,
Please don't hate.
If you have a question that just can't wait,
Send me an email at farmbeachgal@yahoo.com,
And I'll answer right back because I'm, you know, the Mom.

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Wordless Wednesday

Artwork by my son Daniel.


















































************

Read it.
Like it?
Follow it.
Please?
Thanks.
(Follow my blog by adding yourself as a follower with Google Friends Connect in my sidebar!)


***************************


Don't forget, I will love you forever if you throw me a vote on Top Mommy Blogs. You know the drill by now, don't you? Just click the juggling chick and you've voted. You can vote every day till like, forever.

Top Mommy Blogs - Click To Vote!

Thanks!



***************

Take a look at my full hoppin' schedule in my sidebar, and come join the fun!

*************

Rudeness disclaimer:

I love all your comments,
I read every one!
But I can't hit 'reply',
I've no time for fun.
Please don't judge me,
Please don't hate.
If you have a question that just can't wait,
Send me an email at farmbeachgal@yahoo.com,
And I'll answer right back because I'm, you know, the Mom.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

TALU Tuesday


It's time for TALU Tuesday!

That's right, the Tuesday Archive Link-Up.

Time to pull your treasured old posts out of those cobwebby archives, dust them off, and give them new life where they will be seen and enjoyed by untold millions OK, thousands of viewers.

See, this link-up is hosted by several people, who, all together have thousands upon thousands of followers. So when you link your post up with this party? Your post will show up on all their blogs, to all of their followers.

All you've got to do is:


1) link up your post using the linky tool below,

2) visit the hosts and leave a comment to say hi, if you'd like,

3) and try to visit three or more of the blogs linked up and leave a comment. They'll all be doing the same, so it's like a giant hippie love fest. Bring your own flowers.







Oh and when you comment? Put in the secret code "TALU" (Tuesday Archive Link-Up) and then give a little wink so we'll all know what you're talking about.

Have fun!



Now here are your TALU hosts, wonderful gals every one....


Jennifer, author of I Am Not Superwoman

Anne, author of Life On The Funny Farm

Debbie, author of Wrinkled Mommy














************

Read it.
Like it?
Follow it.
Please?
Thanks.
(Follow my blog by adding yourself as a follower with Google Friends Connect in my sidebar!)


***************************


Don't forget, I will love you forever if you throw me a vote on Top Mommy Blogs. You know the drill by now, don't you? Just click the juggling chick and you've voted. You can vote every day till like, forever.

Top Mommy Blogs - Click To Vote!

Thanks!



***************

Come take a look at my full hoppin' schedule in my sidebar, and come join the fun!

*************

Rudeness disclaimer:

I love all your comments,
I read every one!
But I can't hit 'reply',
I've no time for fun.
Please don't judge me,
Please don't hate.
If you have a question that just can't wait,
Send me an email at farmbeachgal@yahoo.com,
And I'll answer right back because I'm, you know, the Mom.

Monday, January 14, 2013

Mirth Monday




































Image from: Dan Still via Pinterest



************

Read it.
Like it?
Follow it.
Please?
Thanks.
(Follow my blog by adding yourself as a follower with Google Friends Connect in my sidebar!)


***************************


Don't forget, I will love you forever if you throw me a vote on Top Mommy Blogs. You know the drill by now, don't you? Just click the juggling chick and you've voted. You can vote every day till like, forever.

Top Mommy Blogs - Click To Vote!

Thanks!

***************

In case you didn't know it, I'm like the queen of blog-hoppin' lately. It's kind of like square dancing but without the dated outfits, smelly gym, and elderly caller. You can find my full schedule in my sidebar, come join the fun!


****************

Rudeness disclaimer:

I love all your comments,
I read every one!
But I can't hit 'reply',
I've no time for fun.
Please don't judge me,
Please don't hate.
If you have a question that just can't wait,
Send me an email at farmbeachgal@yahoo.com,
And I'll answer right back because I'm, you know, the Mom.





Sunday, January 13, 2013

Inspiration Sunday


















































Image source: Tabitha N Alvarez via Pinterest

************


Read it.
Like it?
Follow it.
Please?
Thanks.
(Follow my blog by adding yourself as a follower with Google Friends Connect in my sidebar!)


***************************


Don't forget, I will love you forever if you throw me a vote on Top Mommy Blogs. You know the drill by now, don't you? Just click the juggling chick and you've voted. You can vote every day till like, forever.

Top Mommy Blogs - Click To Vote!

Thanks!


****************

Check my sidebar to see where I'm hoppin' today and everyday!

*****************

Rudeness disclaimer:

I love all your comments,
I read every one!
But I can't hit 'reply',
I've no time for fun.
Please don't judge me,
Please don't hate.
If you have a question that just can't wait,
Send me an email at farmbeachgal@yahoo.com,
And I'll answer right back because I'm, you know, the Mom.







LinkWithin

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...