Sunday, December 23, 2007

I'll Fly Away

Except I don't want to. I'm in the Springs, waiting, waiting, waiting to fly back to Detroit via Ft. Worth. I actually want to stay. I've been up since 3am so I could get to the airport with time to spare in case of unruly weather over the pass.
I'm only going to be in Michigan until 6am Thursday, and my time is filled with family and trying on bridesmaids dresses for my brothers wedding in June.

I am going to be at the MotorCity Bowl Wednesday, so if anyone's going to be there, give a call. My number's still the same! Would love to see people despite my short trip.

I actually wish I was staying in Colorado. I want to see my family, but I am just wiped out from finals last week, fighting the flu and just being tired.

On a good note, though, because I'm leaving: Christmas started early for me! Shane and I exchanged our gifts last night. It also happened to be his birthday, so he had double the fun. Amongst other things, he bought me a beautiful concho and rhinestone headstall and matching reins for when I actually have a horse finished to wear it. Maybe by this summer. I'll post pics when I get back and get service.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

It's Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas...

Sorry I disappear like this so often. It's been crazy here lately! Can't remember if I even mentioned it, but I cooked Thanksgiving dinner! It turned out wonderfully! I even surprised myself! We fried a Turkey, had cranberry pecan stuffing, sweet yams, mashed potatoes and homemade bread! We ate so much the pumpkin pie and coconut cream pie had to wait until the next day. It was mu first Thanksgiving dinner so I was pretty happy with the outcome.

Winter has finally settled in with a vengeance! We've had some snowfall over the last month, but it's mostly melted off pretty quick with the high altitude sun we have here. started snowing Monday afternoon and didn't really stop until Wednesday. School was canceled Tuesday due to the road conditions and snow...but honestly? We're talking about 6 inches here. I mean, c'mon! These people should try the UP sometime! I don't remember even seeing ground, much less a road, for months at a time when living up there! And the road maintenance people here suck. They just pack everything down so when the sun comes out it turns to ice. It's sort of silly. You'd think that at 7500 feet and in the middle of the Rockies they would have figured this out by now. Shane is complaining that having the temps in the single digits at night is trying...but it's still about 30 or 40 and sunny during the day! I told him to try subzero day in and day out and then he could complain. Not to mention never seeing the sun for months on end! I think they're wimps. I love the winters here!

Shane and I went Christmas Tree hunting last Sunday. We love our little fir we found up in the mountains! The dogs thought we brought the outdoors in and love to lay under it. Surprisingly enough the cats haven't bothered it at all.

Oh yeah! Update. Izzy IS NOT preggers! Yeah! This is seriously the worst time of year to have kittens in the house. She can have them come spring, but right now is out of the question! She came into heat last night so we're safe! She has been gaining weight, but I did switch their food so that could be why.

Come skiing y'all! The mountains have been getting slammed! We've already had avalanches due to heavy snowfall!

Monday, November 12, 2007


One more week and the kids have a WHOLE week off for Thanksgiving Break! I still have to come to school Monday and Tuesday, but I don't mind because I can get everything reorganized in my classroom and some new lesson plans written up.

So I've decided I'm posting everything off my new computer because the time seems to come out right (yes, I'm a moron and still worried about what other people think. Somehow though it just bothers me to think that someone would think I was wasting time or not doing my job...consider it job security if nothing else).

So I had an eventful least in my world. On Saturday I managed to completely unpack the bedroom and bathroom and clean and put things in order! I also finally unpacked the boxes in the TV room and waxed the wood floors in the TV room and kitchen. Kitchen needs to be unpacked now, but it has to wait until the new countertops and cupboards go in. This is the first time I've had a whole day home to work and it was so fulfilling!

Shane came in from working the feedlots in the afternoon and we finally got my little colt, Rebel, halter broke. He's too cute and loves to cuddle. Sunday we shipped cattle from the feed lots. I brought my old mare Sabrina. I thought I was going to have to put her down this fall because she was so thin and sickly looking, but we changed her feed again and she's rallied back and is looking great! Albeit still a bit thin. She's as sassy as ever and worked great for me! Sedona came along also. It was a chilly morning as seen by the photos:

My baby boy is growing! He is SOOOO fat and needs to go on a diet. But we roped him and let him fight for a bit and then he just let me put a halter on him! Now he walks right up to me and rests his head on my arm.
Though I don't have an actual age for her since she's a Morgan/Quarter cross and unregisterable, she's most likely around 26 due to aging her teeth. She's so awesome and I hope I still have her around when I have kids so she can teach them the way she taught me!

Giddy up Cow Horse!

Chilly fall morning (it's still been in the 60's and 70's during the day though)!

Sedona chills out with Sabrina in her snazzy Denim jacket.

Can't we get going already?

Sedona and Ty

Crashed out with her buddy Izzy after a way long day. Izzy, by the way, we expect is expecting due to a certain 'Joe' in our house who has trouble grasping that closing the back door involves actually grasping the handle and pulling it after him until he hears a 'click'...
They will be New Year's kittens...

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Middle School Reading Group Trip

At the begining of the school year, while looking over my class rosters, I had a class named JH SME. Huh? So I asked the principal what this was...It's called Junior High Skills Mastery. Huh? It's a small group of 7th and 8th graders who have scored low in reading and writing? HUH!? Teach them to learn to like reading. AHHHHHHH!!!!!

So I introduced myself to my 11 misfits and asked them to pick out a book they would like to read in class from a list I had chosen for them. They choose Canyons by Gary Paulson (yes, the same guy who wrote Hatchet that we all read when we were their age...he's still writing). So we read it. We study the Apache. We study the Berlin Olympics. We study Sacred sites around the world (all topics brought up in the book). And the kids LOVE it. We wrap things up and somebody mentions, "Wouldn't it be cool to go visit this place?" And everybody jumps in, "and we raise money, and we present it to the principal, and we make a documentary, and, and, and...." I tried to jump in, but they were on such a role that two days later I found myself watching them present this to the Principal who approved it. I found myself counting the money they had raised at a bake sale a week later. I found myself booking a hotel, a campsite and setting up educational talks with park Rangers at both White Sands National Monument and Lincoln National Forest....And the weekend before last we made this a possibility.

We drove to Las Cruces, New Mexico on a Thursday afterschool, met with a Ranger at White Sands Friday morning, explored the park all afternoon, drove to Oliver Lee Campground to camp, Hiked the HUGE Dog Canyon trail talked about in the book Saturday (10 miles round trip with a 3500 feet elevation change!), met with a ranger Saturday evening and headed home Sunday morning.

We are now making a documentary to send to the author of the book.

I've had the slide show made for over a week and have been meaning to post, but I've been busy! I figure who the heck cares if I post this info between classes. I obviously teach!

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Oh Bother...

It works. Now I get to take a billion steps to publishing posts instead of clicking a button...just to make everyone else happy. Somehow I'm not happy about finding a solution to the problem.

I don't know why I'm letting this get to me, but it is. Maybe because I'm so consciencious about every little thing I do...(some may call it anal retentive). Anyway - this whole thing with my anonymous blogger bothers me. I know that I'm not wasting time, but I guess somebody chooses not to believe me, and I guess if that person doesn't then maybe others don't either. So to try and remedy this situation I'm trying a blog off my school laptop. If this posts immediatly than I know it's my computer that is causing the problem. Perhaps because I write offline usually it comes up later? (This was a suggestion a web page designer made to me since they often work offline and sometimes see a change in dates and times of design due to it)

So I guess what I'll do is I'll write offline at home on a WORD.doc, e-mail it to myself at school and then copy and paste my work onto my school computer on the blogger site instead of using an offline form and getting into service at school. Here goes...

Tuesday, October 23, 2007


Can anyone figure why I have a mean anonymous commenter? I barely have time to blog as it is and all I'm trying to do is keep in touch with my friends from back home periodically. This puts a damper on my days...

I guess I have to put blocks on my blog now. Oh well.

Not what I needed tonight. I've had a long enough day as it is.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Yes! Finally!

Finally I got busy last night to get a post out sometime today. So here are Pictures! Yeah!

If you haven't yet noticed I wrote three blogs...

While checking my site last night at a friend's house I had a disappointing experience with my comments from an earlier post. I know this must be somebody I if your reading this...scroll down to your addressed 'note'.

I also had a rough night last night, but by sharing with all my worthwhile readers I feel refreashed. Plus I have pictures!

Dear Joe,

Though you may be someone my boyfriend is trying to help out because you are a friend of a friend and found yourself stranded in our mountain valley, I think you are worthless. Why do you ask? Let me count the ways...

1) You come into my house and eat anything you want. To top this off I have discovered you feeding your girlfriend as well from my groceries. If you replaced the food you ate I wouldn't have a problem with this, but you don't.

2) You know the water in the ranch house is sulfuric and therefore we buy drinking water. Do not drink my water. Buy your own so when I get in after working my tail-end off I have something to rehydrate myself with.

3)You talk big, but you are so self-absorbed you have no idea how stupid you sound. You will never 'get rich quick' and need to find a job. Period.

4) The three or four 'odd' jobs you have done around the ranch for us all doesn't translate into your keep. If you haven't noticed the people around this place are up before dawn and rarely back before dark. That means we work for multiple hours at what usually amounts to multiple jobs multiple days in a row. Your hour or two spent painting the entry gates barely scratches the surface of our day.

5) You lie. Plain and simple.

6) You looked like an idiot when you almost fell off your horse driving those 300 head last weekend in Pagosa while staring at two girls in a Hummer. Everybody made fun of you all day and I didn't even start the fun. Maybe I should have video taped it for your girlfriend?

What cataclysmic even started this off? You telling me you were entitled to your opinions last night while telling me you thought all drugs should be legalized to help stop Organized Crime, and I disagreed....for which you replied with profanity and nasty name calling.

Shut up you hypocrite and get a job. It would also help if you moved back to Texas where you belong.

To My Anonymous Blogger

For your info I write my blogs offline at home in the evenings where I don't have internet (when I actually find the time to do it) and then post them when I come into a service area BEFORE I start school in the early mornings. My blogs typically post 3 to 5 hours after I have posted them when I post them before 8:30 am, but only a half hour to 2 hours after about 2 pm. If I try and post after 10pm, however, sometime I have to wait until God knows when...I'm sorry I have to explain this to you, but it seems it's really none of your business anyway.

If you watch my blog so closely you would have seen I've written about this a few different times...trying to find a solution no less...It's just another chapter in my life of how things go odd as usual...

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Roses and Thorns in Colorado

So I just discovered the High School newspaper where I work, The Farmer Flash (published since 1932 may I add), has a Roses and Thorns section! Roses to my new job! Again and again!

Friday, September 28, 2007

'Cause it's Fun

YOUR ROCK STAR NAME: (first pet & current car) - Tara Ford

2.YOUR GANGSTA NAME: (fave ice cream flavor, favorite cookie) -Half Baked Chocolate Chip

3. YOUR “FLY Guy/Girl” NAME: (first initial of first name, first three letters of your last name) -DMcL (Doesn't really work... how 'bout DEOD with the last three letters of my last name?)

4. YOUR DETECTIVE NAME: (favorite color, favorite animal) -Blue Horse

5. YOUR SOAP OPERA NAME: (middle name, city where you were born) -Michelle Detroit

6. YOUR STAR WARS NAME: (the first 3 letters of your last name, first 2 letters of your first) -McLda (let's switch it again with the last three...Eodda)

7. SUPERHERO NAME: (”The” + 2nd favorite color, favorite drink) -The Yellow Tequila

8. NASCAR NAME: (the first names of your grandfathers) -Douglas Massimino

9. STRIPPER NAME: ( the name of your favorite perfume/cologne/scent, favorite candy) -Escada Sweettart

10.WITNESS PROTECTION NAME: (mother’s & father’s middle names ) -Elaine Walter

11. TV WEATHER ANCHOR NAME: (Your 5th grade teacher’s last name, a major city that starts with the same letter) -Levi Levensworth

12. SPY NAME/BOND GIRL: (your favorite season/holiday, flower) -Autumn Rose

13. CARTOON NAME: (favorite fruit, article of clothing you’re wearing right now + “ie” or “y”) -Apple Jeanie

14. HIPPY NAME: (What you ate for breakfast, your favorite tree) -Coffee Aspen

15. YOUR ROCKSTAR TOUR NAME: (”The” + Your fave hobby/craft, fave weather element + “Tour”) -The Riding Snow Tour

Monday, September 24, 2007

Greetings From the Cow Killer

So my truck was finally assessed and the insurance check is in the mail. I do have to have some body work done since the left front panel was pushed up to the door. But other than the bumper and side light everything else seems okay...except the cow of course...Loved the comments by the way...

Well, I finally did it. I moved. I have a few odds and end and a house to clean, but I'm more or less gone and am so happy. Everybody has basically read my woes with the owner of the place, but when I was on fire this summer things got pretty traumatic. I haven't really been able to talk much about it all because it's been so traumatic....but two days into a fire my pregnant brood mare got caught up in the places crappy fences and ended up putting a hole through her leg. She ended up alright because of my awesome neighbors who moved her out of there (and a very expensive vet bill), but had to be kept over there to foal. Well, I left on a detail the morning she birthed a perfect little red filly. I was the first person to handle her and ended up being the last. That afternoon their gelding tore down 30 feet of fence and snapped off 2 posts to get at and kill her. It wasn't my neighbors' fault at all, they did everything they could, including trying to resuscitate her. I didn't find out until 3 days later when I got into cell phone service. If the owner of the place I was living in had taken any pride in his place she would have been where she belonged, at home in her own pen. That sealed the deal for me. I started looking and now I'm gone.

To put things right, this weekend Shane and I went to a performance horse auction to purchase a young horse for him to get started. While checking things out he said I should go look in the weanling pen (where the babies are). I kept coming back to this beautiful dark chestnut colt and looked him up in the catalog. I wanted to show him to Shane, but he just told me to go ask the brand inspector (out local expert on horse conformation) on what he thought. Well, the brand inspector said he was just about the best in the pen and had the papers to prove it so I passed on the info to Shane thinking maybe he'd get something younger if it was well bred. He asked me the number and then ended up buying a horse that came before him in the auction.

I was like 'oh well' and then Shane asked me the colt's number again. I told him and he said, "well, I'm replacing the foal you lost, are you sure that's the one you want?" SOOOOO....I have a beautiful 4 month old colt being registered in my name! To top it off my buddy Kelly is being stationed in Italy this fall, so he's giving me Dasha, the little paint filly I had in my care last year! So I have two new youngster coming to make their home with me this week!

Also - I LOVE the school I'm working in....LOVE it! Things are finally going my way and I'm NOT jinxing it by sharing! I wanted to pass on the good new! And I will have pics soon!

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Thorns.... the guys who can't keep his fences up where I hit his cow with my truck last night. Moo moo cow. Not cool to come down a dirt road at night and there is a wall of cows in front of you. I'm perfectly fine. The truck is alright, but has felt better. As for the cow...let's just say she's moved on to a better place.

Friday, August 31, 2007


I'm so sorry it's been so long since I posted!

First, I want to thank all the great people who've kept me in their thoughts and prayers lately. You all have no idea what it means to know that there are people out there who care.

This has to be quick because I can hear students starting to wander into the school...

I don't really want to go into all the issues that have plauged me over the last few months, but I have gotten through it all and things are definitely looking up. In fact things are more than looking up.

For starters: This new school I'm working at is awesome. I actually can concentrate on teaching these kids rather than trying to actually get them into class and looking busy. At my last job I felt like a babysitter. Here I feel like an educator! Yeah! I'm very excited and have some seriously high hopes concerning this position.

Secondly: Though there has been some major rough spots with health in my family; my cousin Judy has started a foundation in my Aunt Joan's name and will be on Oprah in the near future. This is such a blessing because things have been really hard for the family concerning my Aunt's death.

My Mother and Father also traveled to Baton Rouge a few weeks ago to get my grandparent's remains. They have brought them back to Michigan to be buried. My Grandmother died last May and they were waiting to bring them back together. My Aunt has supposedly sent some really memorable things for me from my grandmother, so that has taken the edge off her death a bit.

I will be moving from the Ranch I live on sometime in the near future. The going ons there have not helped my stress levels and I've decided I need to move. I have a few options and am looking forward to the change.

If some of you haven't figured it out, things were not so great between myself and Shane there for a bit. We kept in touch and did some things together but the situation wasn't very good. I'm glad to say that by both being adult and talking through stuff, we've actually gotten a lot closer. I don't want to talk much about this because I'm in a mode where I feel if I get excited about something it falls down around my head, but I will say things are going well and I'm happy.

Hope everyone has a great Labor day weekend! Shane, myself and a good friend of his are heading to Steamboat for a PBR he's announcing and then Windsor for Bullmania. I'm sure I'll be exhausted come Tuesday morning, but I know it's going to be fun!

I will be posting again more regularly!

Sunday, July 29, 2007

I'm just writing to let everyone know that I'm overwhelmed with some pretty horrible things that have been happening here and don't feel much up to keeping this thing updated or even venting about it all at the moment because it's just too much. I keep watch on everyone else's blog and will eventually get back to mine in the near(er) future than later. I'm just traumatized and don't know how to put things into words right now.

On a side note, not everything is all that bad and I have some pretty supportive people surrounding me (not many, but enough). I also have been tagging along with Shane to rodeo recently and it keeps my mind in a better place.

I think the year on a whole is catching up to me and instead of getting better, things kind of keep getting worse. I'm hanging in there as usual.

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

I'm Not Dead Yet...

I think I'll take a walk...

Just a quick update. My 24 hour fluey thing I thought was going to kill me didn't and I was on a fire by the evening of the 4th. We just got home yesterday night. The crew hit 5 fires in two weeks and were jumped all over Colorado. I'll update more later but it was killer!

Not a great homecoming. I've got vet bills and boarding fees for my pregnant mare because she was badly hurt on one of the wrecked fences we have around here. She's going to be fine, but it was stressful for awhile. Luckily I have fantastic neighbors who took the situation in hand for me. Because of this all I've decided I'm fed up with the CHEAP owner of this place. Things are getting done, but not without him bitching every step of the way. If horses are being hurt, cattle are getting into the neighbors and he can't fix it, I don't know if I want to stay. As it was I spent almost my whole day off trying to get two horses out of a neighbors pasture. His attitude is: "if it's a free range state, they can pay to keep my livestock out..." He's so friendly eh? I just didn't need this stress as a welcome home. And to top it off I probably can't go out with the next crew because I'm SO needed in the home office because SOMEBODY didn't do their job and now I get to pick up the pieces because I'm such a HARD WORKER and TRUSTWORTHY. Great. So if I was lazy and worthless I wouldn't lose out on the few thousand dollars the next fire detail will make?

Sorry to vent. Things just don't seem to ever turn out the way I'd like them too.

I will post pics of everything eventually. Patience!

Wednesday, July 04, 2007


I feel like poop. I'm sitting in the office because my crew is staging for a fire, yet we don't even have an assignment. Looks like I get to sit on my butt all day and do nothing. Happy 4th of July to me.

This is bad timing actually, but I can't pass up a fire since I need the money. It's just that I think I have the flu, or something, because I have been throwing up since yesterday, feel like someone kicked me in the stomach, have a pounding head and am alternating between freezing cold and burning up. I'm trying to keep saltines down right now.

So if nobody hears from me for awhile, I'm on a fire and got better. Either that or I died.

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

What I've Been Doing...

....Obviously NOT posting pictures. But I do have bunches and will soon. Maybe.

Actually I've been packing for a fire (my crew 'hit the board' yesterday meaning we're available to go once we're requested). Fire season is still a bit slow at the moment, but things are starting to pop! So I've lined up a 'babysitter' for the 'kids' and have pretty much been organizing my life. It's sad I want to go so bad, not because of the money or fun I do have with my crew, but because I want to run away from the valley for the rest of the summer and this is the only way I can afford it right now. Don't ask.

Been doing a bit of 'out of town' traveling. Went to Fruita, CO for a bullriding a few weekends ago and spent some time in Cheyenne last weekend with Kelly and his girlfriend and then went to see Shane announce a rodeo in Grover, CO.

Also building fence since the elk are on the move and have knocked them down, and my paddocks are still all blown down from that storm a few weeks ago. Supposedly the owner of the place is fighting with the insurance company, but I have high hopes we have some better facilities being built real soon here.

Very excited about my new teaching position this fall. They gave me a new Gateway Tablet for work. You can actually write on it! It's really neat. Check out the link.

Ok - lunch is ending. Will try and get pics up soon!

Monday, June 18, 2007

Thank you all, I got it!

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Nothing New

Nothing much new to report. I had a good weekend. I had a good interview. What more can I ask for right now? I feel I represented myself strongly and was very excited by the school and it's representatives. It is a school I would be honored to work at and where I feel I would be able to be the awesome teacher I know I am with a supportive staff and administration. I also want so much to be able to grow in my career and I really feel they could give me this opportunity. I hope this works out. I find out Friday.

I've had a humbling experience this week concerning a sick family member. It's opened my eyes to how small I really am in such a large world, and that integrity and honosty truly can pay off, even if it takes "forever" to notice the results. I think it's all about faith, and I've really been lacking in it lately due to a bunch of outside influences. Maybe things really do happen for a reason and sticking to my guns and doing my best will pay off.

Being involved in the community has brought some surprising support my way. Parents from local schools that I work with and community members I'm involved with in the Forest Service and Fire Department have been stopping me to tell me how much they admire me for standing up for my beliefs and doing what is right. It's been a surprise because I didn't know that people knew why I resigned from the school I was at, but it's made me stop doubting so much about how things worked out.

Thursday, June 07, 2007

Quick Update

I've started with the Forest Service for the summer and have been away at Fire Academy since last Saturday taking a saw class. I'm a bad chainsaw welding bizatch now.

I have an interview on Monday with The School of Choice. Pray for me.

Great advice Alanna, but I don't have television. I live too far out for cable, I won't pay for satellite, and I'm never home anyway so what's the point?

90 mile per hour microbursts here yesterday. Looks like a tornado went through. My barn and paddocks are gone. No joke. It's spread across about 40 acres down the highway. Surprisingly the livestock are fine and neither the chicken nor goose were blown away. I had live wires down for a bit longer than what was comfortable, and since the wiring is all jacked up the power company had to cut all power to the place for safety reasons last night. It was like camping. But only in my bed. No water or light. Everything is back on today thanks to a lifesaving electrician. The clean up and rebuilding will start after the insurance company gets pictures.

Have one foal on the ground and still waiting for my mare to foal. I think she ended up not being bred until a lot later than I originally figured. The little hussy.

The birthday to end all birthdays is this Saturday. I'm supposed to be doing something fun. I hope I still am. Pray more for me.

Will post pictures soon!

Thursday, May 24, 2007

Thursday Interview

Taken from Laura, this looked like a good time killer idea...

1) So what are you doing?
Attempting to clean out my classroom for the last time, and no, I do not mean for the year, I mean for the last time. I don't really want to go into details, but I made the choice to officially move on. I have two full days to do about 4 hours of work, so I'm organizing some files and stuff as well.

2) Any future plans?
Well, I'm working for the Forest Service this summer, and have considered moving and taking a permanent position with them, but I'm still convinced teaching is my thing and want to find another position locally. I do have an interview or two lined up. I'm pretty cranky concerning the situation, so I'm pretty much just waiting to see what happens. I've got the ball rolling and am trying to convince myself that things DO really happen for a reason.

3) Ok then, what about this weekend? Anything planned for the holiday?
Unfortunately no. I probably will work on a forestry contract I have open and help out at the dance my fire department is throwing. What I really want to do is get on a plane and fly REALLY, REALLY far away from here and never come back and deal with my 'situations'. But then I would have to leave the menagerie and I could never do that.

4) So, 'situations' to define?
No, not really, except that I seem to stick my foot in it more often that not and it's biting my right in the butt. Now I'm just waiting a few things out to see if I've ruined a really good thing or if I actually have managed to set things back on track correctly.

5) Still upset over the few problems that popped up last week?
Not as much. I'm pretty proactive in trying to fix stuff, and after a few phone calls and explainations things are a bit better. It dealt with some financial stuff and a mail mix up, and some questionable health issues that had me worried. I've chilled out some.

6) That's good news then.
Yes. Now I can concentrate on the rest of it all. I really am trying to stay positive.

7) It doesn't sound like it. In fact, it sounds like you are wallowing in self-pity.
Yup, pretty much so. But if that was all it was I'd never get out of bed and sleep all day. I'm trying to stay busy and get the day to go by as fast a possible because you never know what the next day may bring!

8) What about all the great advice everyone gave you?
I am eternally greatful. Really. I truly am religious and am praying regularly this all works out. It's hard for me to get to mass because of where I live. It's isolated and sometimes mass just doesn't happen because there's nobody to go, but I try. I think I've got to try and have faith on this all. It's out of my hands and I can't really help myself out any more that I already have.

9) Anything positive?
I am looking forward to starting my summer job. I also have lost my winter weight due to nervous tension. I suppose whatever works right?

10) Alrighty...ever get that blog posting problem fixed?
No. It posts alright during the now, but if I write late at night it still won't post until later the next day. I'm convinced it's my broadband service and not blogger. Not too concerned anymore...just more curious.

Wednesday, May 16, 2007


Anyone who's kept up with my blog is sure to realize my year has been anything but boring so far. Event after event after event has seemed to occur, whether they were welcome or not...and it seems I have gotten a rather negative attitude about life in general rampaging through my mind due to it all. Thinking back I'm aware this has been a bit of a downfall of mine in the past when situations become trying, but what I have failed to realize is just how much I have going for me.

Yes, things suck right now for me. There has been death, sickness, life-altering disappointment and unexpected financial changes, and I was hit with two more 'issues' tonight that ruined my plans and had me in tears, but truly, they aren't the end of the world. I've been through worse before, much worse, and I know I can get through all this too even though it seems scary right now. I am resiliant, strong, stubborn and willing to do what it takes to succeed. I also have a great work ethic, try my hardest to be the best I can, am not afraid to try new approaches to tasks in work and life...I also have a lot of energy and keep busy, so why do I get so negative about things? It's ruining my relationships with others and ruining my self-esteem.

I've decided I have to do something about this. I HAVE to change this habit, state of mind, whatever, into something a bit more positive. Yes, I still need people keeping their digits crossed for me, but I sure would appreciate if you all could share with me the things you do to perk yourself up when you've gotten really down and out. Attitude really is everything, but I just need some help getting there occasionally. Some things I've resolved to do? 1o in the list to start:

1) Smile. It just seems to come easier once you put a little effort into it.
2) When I feel like I'm about to start whining about my problems to somebody, stop and ask THEM how they are instead.
3) Learn to say 'no' when asked to take on yet another extra task voluntarily.
4) Continue to keep regular massage appointments to help reduce stress.
5) Stop judging others. I'm not perfect either.
6) Do one purposly random act of kindness for another per week, even if it's just a smile or 'hello' in the Walmart parking lot.
7) Don't 'bury' my head, proverbial or otherwise, when I get down. Go for a walk or ride with the dogs instead.
8) Research for information about the things that are bothering me and continue taking a proactive approach to them.
9) Tell the people who are supportive in my life how much I appreciate them being here.
10) Don't give up.

Tuesday, May 08, 2007

Problems Anyone?

Does anyone else have this problem? When I publish a new blog, it often takes up to 12 hours to post. I usually write later at night and I've noticed sometimes it doesn't post until the next morning, or sometime not until the next afternoon. Only occasionally does it post right away. This started about the time Blogger went out of beta, but I also started using a broadband service at this time so I'm wondering if it's the service, or Blogger. SO if anyone else has this problem (not like it's THAT big of a deal), then I know it's probably Blogger. If not, my broadband...Maybe if I write things too late at night it needs time to process through the server? I've noticed my service is awefully slow after about 10 at night...

On another note...things are in upheaval right now in my life. Not going to explain other than I have become more and more convinced that integrity is becoming an endangered trait, and that I have made some major decisions in the last year that I have been convinced show I'm standing up for what is right.

Please keep your fingers crossed for me...your toes too if you can!

Thursday, April 26, 2007

It's That Time of Year Again!

Busy as usual. Especially with school coming to a close in the next month. I've never seen so many slackers in my life, nor worked so hard to turn the tables. I'm worn out, and truely wondering if I'm cut out for this job in this situation. All I can do is my best though, right?

Shane and I worked Prom last weekend. Not that I wanted to be at the school yet another day of the week (trust me, I usually have my fill by the end of the day Monday), but since they hired Shane for his sound equipment I felt obliged to attend as well. It was interesting, and somebody managed to snap a pic of us together:

Sorry not much interesting going on. Still calving because the owner of the ranch is a moron and kept the bull on all year. Hopefully I'll be done before June. Only 5 left to go anyway. Also been helping Shane try and get planted (barley). We had a HUGE snowstorm the other day...15 inches in less than three hours here at school and they had to let us leave before noon to get home. As it was a lot of people got stuck. Almost all melted here today, and sunny and warm as usual. Typical Colorado weather!

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Misc. Rantings

Fire Department Fun

Last weekend we were asked to burn ditches for some ranchers. They usually donate a few hundred dollars to the department, buy us lunch and watch us have fun starting and putting out fires all day. Tumbleweeds fill up the ditches along the roads and when the mountain flood gates are opened to help irrigate the fields, the water can't flow well through these ditches. Most ranchers burn there own, but sometimes things can get out of hand, so we get called into help. It's a ton of fun!
It's also a great learning experience for those guys who don't have much

wildland experience and a great training for those of us who are newer to the engines and the way the pumps work. I got to be the 'hose' girl for the day and mark out wet lines (boundaries for the fire) and keep post from burning when we burned through a fence. I learned a lot about how to get the pumps running and how to refill the tanks from our tender. I figure it's always good to know a little bit about it all in case one day the people who DO know a lot aren't around. Plus I'm totally a hands on learner. Show me and I completely forget once my back is turned.

Easter Sunday
So the weather here literally 'sucked' on Easter. I was planning on spending the day at Shane's dad's house riding and roping with him after church, but nothing went as planned. It rained lots instead. Actually, I felt the day was not a total waste as we went to the nursing home and had lunch with his grandfather. But I was a bit bent out of shape about a few things; first and formost is that I figure Easter as a family day, and Shane's mother's family didn't invite him anywhere and his father had plans with his friend from out of town. I really felt bad for him because usually I get a bit down on the holidays since I live so far from my family, and here is someone who is literally surrounded by family and there is nobody to be with. He didn't seem to mind, but I think it bothered him some, hence why we went to the nursing home...nobody was there with his grandfather either.
I was really happy to be able to spend the day with him, and that he included me in what plans he had. It ment a lot to me, and got a bit on the defense in his case because I've gotten a bit bothered by his family a few times now. Not that all his family members are horrid or anything, it just seems that I see somebody who gives so much whenever he can, but because his parent's are divorced, I feel the families' sort of lost him in the shuffle when he was a kid and they forget he's part of them too. He's awfully close to his grandfather though, and I think it really hurt him that he was sort of 'forgotten' in the nursing home that day. I know thay went and visited him later, but was it so hard to sit down and have a meal with the poor old guy? Well, we did the best we could, and I suppsoe that's what counts.
Wedding Planner Crasher
See, now I just sort of feel guilty about my brother. I am jealous, but in a good way. I've gotten closer to him in the last few months than I have been for years since he told me he was planning on marrying his girlfriend. There's a lot of excitement, and he and I have 'big' plans for the wedding...but then I feel I really shouldn't try and have a say because this isn't my wedding at all, so I'm just becoming the passive listener and being excited for their plans period. Not that I'm a meddler, he and I can just get carried away with ideas over the phone, and it's really his fiance's family who is planning it all.

I guess I feel I want to be involved more. Living 1500 miles away from this all sort of keeps me out of 'the loop' and I'm updated as an afterthought. It's not anybodies fault really. I DO live awfully far away (by choice) and am out of 'the loop' per se. It's just I'd love to help out some with the shower stuff and bachelorette (how the hell do you spell that word?) party, and I just know I won't be able to afford to keep flying back and forth for it all. I want to talk with my mom and brother and suggest they at least plan the shower over holiday time or something when I'm home, but does that seem too demanding? I mean, I wouldn't want somebody telling me I had to make plans around their schedule just so they could be included. Afterall, it's not MY wedding.

Mom For A Week
I really wonder why I do these things to myself...I'm babysitting this week for three kids. Actually, it isn't bad at all. The oldest is 13 and pretty much takes care of herself, the youngest two are 7 and 10 and won't stop fighting. I guess that's the age! It's a ton of energy and I'm so impressed with people who have growing kids in their house! Though I would like children of my own, I definitely don't want to wake up with three having 'miraculously' appeared, half grown already. I'd rather raise my own, thanks.

I'm also shuffling them to and from school and making them work on the ranch because, 'life goes on'. The 10 year old was up half the night sick, but was fine this morning, so I guess it was something he ate. I'm keeping a close eye on him at school, but he's fine so far, so yeah me. I'm exhausted, but I guess it's good practice eh?

Thanks Lesley for the Fun!
Look! I'm and M & M! Complete with John Deere green hat!

Thursday, April 05, 2007

My Brother is Getting Married

Bear with me while I whine a bit...

Am I totally wrong for feeling weird (and maybe a bit jealous) over the fact that my brother is going to get married next year? He told me he was going to propose at Thanksgiving, maybe around spring-time, and he did just a few weeks ago.

I do really like the girl he's going to marry, and it seems she's pretty easy going about everything, so the wedding will probably go off with out a hitch...but I'm just feeling a bit strange over the whole thing. My baby brother is getting married, has found a person he wants to spend the rest of his life with and I still haven't. It's just made me a bit depressed, and I'm even more down and out about it because it makes me feel selfish to think this way. I've given myself a lot of time to chew on this it isn't like I'm just jumping on some feelings that popped up when this all started to happen.

I feel I have to work lots harder to reach my goals, have had some serious setbacks, force myself to overcome incredible difficulties...and my brother just waltzes around and has this incredible luck with his jobs and the women he meets. And now he has this amazing woman to spend the rest of his life with and I feel as if it just hasn't been fair. I'm a bit less than happy with work and don't feel appreciated at all, plus I seriously thought I was in some fairy-tale relationship once upon a time, and not only did it go sour, but just about ruined my life as well. It seems things must thunder, lighting and then be knocked down by hurricane force winds before they end for me instead of just having a rain and letting me know it isn't working. I definitely have a life it pours on...and trust me, I would catch the hint if the clouds started rolling in and I was blessed enough to actually have a warning.

Granted, I don't want Prince Charming, they don't exist in real life. And I do have a wonderful relationship NOW though, and maybe things will work out with us, but I occasionally feel like if I start to think about taking this a step farther, all I'll do is step on my brother's toes because he was engaged first. What a conundrum!

I AM happy for my brother. Really. I'm also really glad he doesn't have to deal with the hardships I do, 'cause they suck and I'm not sure I would wish them on anybody. But sometimes I wish big, life-altering, happy things would come to me a bit easier as well...occasionally. Without me having to go to Hell and back first.

Oh God. I'm going to have to wear a bridemaid dress.

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

It's Happened Again...

Wind storm last night. Tree fell across my drive. Was almost trapped on the place until I remembered I have two other drives (I know, I know, I'm blond and it was way early morning...) that were gated up to keep escaped livestock in. So I just opened one up and drove out!

What is it with me and falling trees?

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

2 In One Week!

Yup, I thought I should truly update you all with my life for real and let you see some pictures from the last few months.

Let's answer some true questions from 'The Life of Danielle':

So what major events have been occurring these last few months?

Well, after the pumphouse thawed out and water and septic were back up to par I moved home. I was working on a forest contract marking trees, but since the weather has gotten warmer in the last few weeks, I was shut down so as not to damage forest roads driving in and out. The break is nice, but I actually am looking forward to the roads drying back out so I can start making some extra cash again. As mentioned previously, calving is still at it's height, and we are shipping out the last of last years steers and those cows who have been sickly or too old to have healthy calves. By culling the herd things may start to go a bit easier for me.

Done anything fun that doesn't involve work?

I've done quiet a bit of skiing, but since most all of that has been for school, I'm not sure if it counts! I've helped Shane out a lot burning ditches and helping with his cattle at his grandpa's ranch also. In February we drove up to Gillette, WYO to pick up some bucking stock bred cows that are going to calve here next month, and a few weeks ago we drove to Clayton, NM for his mom's birthday. We also have managed to get out riding and starting to rope for the warmer months to come.

How's firefighting going?

Had my first real house fire! Usually all I deal with are vehicle accidents, but we've had two house fires in the last month. Luckily neither were totaled, and one of the houses was a student's place, so it was really hard on her at first, but her room was at least untouched. We also have had a lot of training lately, and being one of the only girls I always feel like I have to work even harder to prove myself. The guys are great and put absolutely no pressure on me, but I'm proud to say that I have been qualified at a Level 1 for SCBA (self-contained breathing apparatus), meaning I can be part of an entry team on fires from here on out for my department. I also am being trained to drive the tender, and impressed the guys with being able to shift it without using a clutch.

Want to be anywhere else than here?

Yup. Can't wait until summer break. Granted I'm working for the Forest Service again, I'm looking forward to the money and having three day weekends during which I plan on traveling to rodeo's with Shane. He's actually in Laughlin, NV announcing one of the largest PRCA rodeo's there is. I wish I could be there to see it. He's also doing a PBR there in a few weeks which I'm also going to miss. Bummer.

Major concerns?

School as usual. Family. I'm finding it harder and harder to live away from family and friends, but wouldn't change living out here for anything. It's nice having a boyfriend again, and that helps, but he's thinking of possibly moving so it's been real tough thinking about that. A year from now moving for me could be a real possibility, but for now I'm committed and have contracts. To me, honoring my word means a lot.

I also love the ranch I live on, but it's becoming harder and harder to deal with the guy who owns it. He's a really great old guy, but his business sense sucks, and it seems he has so much money it seems he doesn't care about much and is pretty cheap. I don't want my name associated with a lot of it anymore. I'll do the grunt work, but forget dealing in horses or livestock.

Also, Shane's grandfather has been real sick and it's hard watching someone else worry about someone they love. My grandmother also hasn't been doing to well it seems, and I think I need to take a trip to Louisiana and visit soon here.

Anything else to add?

Come visit! Weather has been mostly beautiful and am a bit lonely for a good time every now and then!

Other than that, everything is doing great at home! Dogs are happy, cats are happy, horses are shedding off those heavy winter coats, my goose is still terrorizing anything that moves, and my chicken has managed to hide her nest good enough that I can't find it! I need help for a chicken egg hunt!

Monday, March 26, 2007


It's been forever, and I'm making this fast, but I'll get around to writing worthwhile stuff again soon!

The seasons have definitely changed here! Warmer weather and rainstorms, sunny days and spring blizzards; everything contradicts itself at 8,000 feet! I'm half-way through my calving, and hate to say it, but it hasn't been that great of a year concerning calves. I feel loosing one is one too many, and more than that have been lost. It's a bit depressing. One the other hand, Rumba, my mare, is getting closer to foaling and soon I'll have a little bugger running around with his mummy! I can't wait!

With our warm weather has come a decline in skiing conditions. A-Basin is usually open well through June, but these local places are loosing their base fast. As long as the sun is out and the temps are warm it's still worth it, but when it turns rainy, or those Chinook winds start to blow, well, it's just downright miserable!

Been bringing in hay, still! Driving me crazy! So between work and play (mostly work) I've been busy, hence why this thing hasn't been updated!

Still dating Shane. Still happy. Still haven't posted a picture. Sorry!

Monday, February 26, 2007

Will Wonders Never Cease?

I have been so crazy these last few weeks I'm not sure where my head is! We finally have closed the basketball season losing in the District finals on Friday. I hate to say it, but I'm so happy to have my weekends back! I started calving last week and have been averaging about 1 calf a day. I have two heifers (first year moms) that refuse to come in and have been getting up every few hours to drive out in the field and check on them at night. Two nights ago one snuck off though and had her baby. No problems, thank God, but I can't get her in to check if it's a bull or heifer and need to band if it's a bull (put a rubber band around his nuts to make him a steer). Oh well.

Also - Maverick has figured out how to climb fences. Sunday morning was spent trying to Maverick proof the kennel. So far so good, until he finds another corner to climb. I'm glad he's so smart and such a problem solver, but it's beginning to challenge me! And get expensive! He's such a good boy though and I had to hide in the house to get this picture. He waits until I'm gone, jumps up, grabs hold and climbs! I put some chicken wire across the top and he bounce off it a few times until he figured out he was screwed with that maneuver.

But, the real story for the weekend is how amazing animals really are. As mentioned, I'm at the height of calving and recently was up all night with a heifer who lost her baby. He seems to have been dead before birth and came head first, forcing me to catch her in a chute and try and get a leg to pull the calf. My neighbor finally ended up helping me at 4:30 in the morning (they were up calving too), and between the two of us managed to pull the calf. The heifer seems fine, but was a bit depressed at first and wouldn't leave her dead calf. A few days earlier this heifer's mother had had her third calf and was still in the paddock with all the expecting mothers. When I turned the heifer who had lost her calf out with the others, she immediately went over to her mother and started to nurse her little baby brother! Not only did her mom let her do this, but it seems they have teamed up in taking care of the little guy and are sharing him! Isn't it amazing how animals take care of their kids? Even when they are all grown up? I can think of a few people who could learn a few things from these 'dumb' animals.

I wish I had a better picture of all three of them. But they are really protective and want to eat me. This is the 'big momma"! And her daughter looks just like her with red patches over both eyes. The little guy is just too cute for words!

Also - Skiing is awesome this year with all the snow! Here I am braving some arctic weather for thigh deep powder with a few of my students and me with the other sponsor.

Anyway - thought I'd share!

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

A Little Info...

Since I haven't updated in awhile and am feeling guilty...tada! Anyway - way cool trip to Gillette this weekend. I will update this thing eventually with my real life adventures soon.

1. What is your occupation? High School English and Science Teacher, Rancher, Firefighter and contract Forester
2. What color are your socks right now? I’m not wearing any!
3. What are you listening to right now? My dog terrorize one of the cats
4. What was the last thing that you ate? A cheeseburger at the basketball game
5. Can you drive a stick shift? It’s all I've ever owned practically!
6. If you were a crayon, what color would you be? pink
8. Do you like the person who sent this to you? Most definitely
9. How old are you today? 28
10. Favorite drink? Alcoholic -Lambrusco, Non-alcoholic - water
11. Favorite thing to watch? The horses run in from pasture
12. Have you ever dyed your hair? yes
13. Pets? Too many too count!
14. What was the last movie you watched? RV
15. Favorite day of the year? Christmas
16. What do you do to vent anger? Go for a horseback ride or long walk with the dogs
17. What was your favorite toy as a child? Grover
18. What is your favorite season? Fall
19. Hugs or kisses? kisses
20. Cherries or Blueberries? Depending on what I feel like
21. Do you want your friends to email you back? YES :)
22. Who is most likely to respond? not sure
23. Who is least likely to respond? Well, since I’m blogging this, probably everybody
24. Living arrangements? House
25. When was the last time you cried? I was a bit frustrated this evening...
26. What is on the floor of your closet? Shoes, a spare sock or two, dust?
27. Who is the friend you have known the longest that you are
sending this to? The gals I’ve known the longest who read my blog are probably Lesley and Erin
28. What did you do last night? Drove in from Gillette, WYO with Shane’s bucking stock and crashed (in bed that is)!
29. What is your birth sign? Gemini
30. What/Who inspires you? Mom, dad and hard work
31. What are you afraid of? Having to depend on someone else
32. Plain, cheese, or spicy hamburgers? Cheesy and spicy!
33. Favorite dog breed? Boxer crosses or any type of working cattle dog
34. Number of keys on your key ring?, school, truck, parent’s, Shane’s, etc...
35. How many years at your current job? Almost 3 and a tenure!
36. Favorite day of the week? Thursday ... a whole 3 day weekend ahead of me!
37. How many states have you lived in? 2 - MI and CO
38. Favorite holiday? Christmas
39. Ever driven a motorcycle or heavy machinery? Yuppers! Both!
40. Who is your favorite College team? Depends on the season...
41. Do you have a house phone that is NOT cordless? I don’t even have a house phone!
42. Prefer 10 inches of snow or 100 degree weather? 10 inches of snow (but not 10 degree weather)!
43. If you could have the chance to talk to 3 people who are dead, who would
they be? My grandfathers, grandmother and Aunt Gail

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Home Again, Home Again, Jiggady Jig

Yeah! Again! I'm home! So 47 feet of frozen PVC was unfrozen under my driveway the other day and the leaks under the house we temporarily sealed until warmer weather. I REFUSE to turn off the water until the weather becomes more consistently above freezing, and have a hose running to the septic line constantly to keep that open and always crack either a faucet in the house or a spigot in the paddocks. This is becoming insane, but I will definitely have stories to tell about this winter for years to come it seems. I keep waiting for the next event to occur.

Of course all of this had to come at the worst time possible with the height of basketball season in full swing, me coaching, FBLA district conferences and Homecoming this Friday (which of course I sponsor). I also need to move in my cattle for calving here real quick and I'm supposed to road-trip in to Gillette, WYO with Shane next weekend to pick up some bucking stock. That at least is the highlight of my next few weeks since he's only been home for 2 days in the last 17 and leaves again the week after next. He has no idea this thing exists and isn't a big internet bum so I feel free to share! So far I've really enjoyed the time I've spent with him.

Anywho - hopefully I'll get some pictures up here within the next few weeks and everybody can at least see how beautiful it's been out here despite the cold. It is warming up though, and we're hitting double digits at night and getting above freezing during the day more regularly.

Monday, February 05, 2007

Yet Another Chapter in the Life of Danielle's House

Okay,'s not funny anymore. Last night I discovered the pipe to the drain under the house had burst and I now have 'Lake Driveway'. Yeah me. So I've once again moved out, but have a plumber coming to see if it can't be fixed in a few hours. Supposedly this probably had been occuring over a long period of time. Seems the water from the laundry did 'er in last night.

Hopefully it's not so bad the water has soaked into the ground so my house starts to sink come spring...Ha, ha, ha....wouldn't that be the kicker?!

Thursday, February 01, 2007

Yeah Me!

Yeah! I'm moved back into my house! I kept a heater going in the pump house since it froze and have been keeping my finger's crossed. Last Sunday afternoon it broke through and I have water!!!! Then a few hours later the septic on the south side of the house unfroze and I moved home Monday after school. I didn't realize how stressed out this all had made me and I'm so thankful to all the good thoughts sent my way and all the help my neighbors gave me in hauling water and whatnot. I still have a problem with some septic pipes on the north side of the house, but that can wait until warmer weather.

We've got another cold snap rolling in as I type this, but no fear! I am not turning the water off until it is consistently above freezing EVER again! Currently I have a stock tank running, and though I have a little river running through my pasture because of it...I don't care. See? Lessons learned.

Now that I am safely tucked away back home I can look back a a few incidents fit for the archives and laugh. The tips I have learned:

1) Try to haul water BEFORE temperatures drop before zero so the spigot doesn't freeze. Then you don't have to half drown yourself sucking water through a hose to try and empty out the portable tank.

2) Let the formentioned tank empty of water by hose and don't try and speed the process up by tipping it over once it has become light enough. This may cause you to slip and fall into the stock tank along with the portable tank and freeze your dripping wet rearend to a post while attempting to load the portable back into the truck in shin deep water.

3) Declaw your barn cat so they don't climb to the top of the electric post and get stuck 16 feet in the air after nightfall so your dripping wet rear doesn't have to problem solve and can go inside instead. If this does happen, grab your handy heading rope, stand on the fence next to her and continually swat away until you knock her loose. She may hate you initially, but it beats spending the night in the open. Then go change out of those wet clothes (of course this all happened in one night! What else would you expect from me?).

4) Don't get crabby about your situation. Somebody probably has it worse.

5) Have faith. Sometimes it works!

Thanks again for all the good thoughts!

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

What Silver Lining?

I need finger's crossed for me, prayers, voodoo...whatever works to get me out of the situation I'm in. I've been dealing with this for over a week now...

As everyone knows, the weather all over the nation has been crazy in the past few weeks. Southern Colorado is no exception, and even though we haven't received the cow killing snowstorms like the front range has been having, we have had some seriously low temperatures and wicked wind. Just an idea of how bad it's been: we didn't have school yesterday because the pump at the school went out and half the teachers are gone this week because though they survived last week, they're finding their pipes are frozen this week! Maybe if we had some sort of snow cover to help insulate the ground that would be one thing, but there's nothing here!

I discovered last Monday morning my pipes had frozen, but since I had some water I figured it must have frozen at the pump. I turned on the faucets, jacked up the heat, and opened the cupboards. My landlord was notified and I headed to work. Didn't work. It seems the same night we had some -40 some degree weather, the bulb in the pump house had burned out and the pipes had frozen there. To top it off, the pressure valve broke. Once that was all fixed up and thawed out I discovered I STILL didn't have any water, and neither did the livestock at the paddocks. So I took last Wednesday off work to try and assess the situation and come up with some sort of emergency plan. I did manage to get water out of the pumphouse and ran a hose to a portable water tank for the livestock. Since then I have discovered many things:

1) The water is not frozen under the house nor at the hydrants. Thus it is frozen somewhere UNDERGROUND and nothing can be done since the pipe is PVC and has to thaw out on it's own. Yeah for May. April if I'm lucky.

2) Septic can only stay unfrozen for so long when the pipes are out of use. Therefor, as of Saturday, my septic is now frozen also.

3) My house is unlivable.

4) Obviously the idiot who put the lines in did not bury them deep enough because the line from the pump to the pumphouse has frozen as well, and now I have absolutely NO water anywhere on the property. Supposedly this violates code and this guys can get in some serious trouble. But what good is that going to do me right now? Even if they made him dig it all back up and fix it, he's still have to wait until thaw.

5) My neighbor rocks because he is letting me fill portable water tanks at his pump and hauling it over to my house for the livestock.

6) The septic can probably be thawed out so I can haul water into the house also, but it needs to get a little warmer so it doesn't freeze right back up.

7) This needs to be figured out soon because I start calving and need to be home more than once a day, and my dogs are seriously starting to hate me.

8) I've moved in with Shane temporarily, but he's gone announcing anyway for awhile so it's no big deal.

9) I'm going broke with all the extra driving to the ranch everyday and 30 miles to a home I can stay in. I didn't budget for an extra 180 miles a week. This may break me.

To top it all off, all this stress and running around in the cold weather after dark has left me one sick puppy. I'm feeling a lot better today and don't have to blow my nose every two seconds, but am really run down and extremely tired. Shane's a doll for putting up with me when he has been home, but I really hate this situation and want my own place back. It helps he's gone for the next two weeks, then I don't feel underfoot, but still, it's not my place and I'd love to just be able to do chores and then kick back and relax instead of having to drive 30 miles just to get a shower.

Looking at the somewhat bright side: I do have a place to live until this gets worked out.

Monday, January 15, 2007

Another One for the Archives...

Ok people. I've got another 'moment' for y'all. So I stayed over at a friends house the other night due to inconvenient weather conditions and was the last to leave the next morning. After warming up my truck and making sure the house was locked up, I started to scrape the snow and ice off my truck. While standing in the door frame I must have hit the door lock and, you guessed it, locked myself out of my running truck. To top it off my phone was locked in the truck as well. Since a convenient ranch work truck was parked next to me, I started rifling through the bed for wire or tools that might help me break into my truck since I became an expert at it with the Chevy (I am notorious for locking my keys in my trucks....). Needless to say I discovered this is almost impossible to do with a Ford unless one literally 'breaks' in. BUT! Low and Behold! The work truck is unlocked and has keys in the ignition! Normally I would NEVER borrow somebody else's vehicle without asking, especially on icy roads, but I think this consititutes and emergency. So one spin-out (little truck, no traction, icy roads...forgive me) and 2 hours later I return with a spare key. Fun, Fun!

The spare is now wired to the frame of the truck.

So y'all want to know MORE details!?
I said I wasn't jinxing anything and just taking it as it comes, but to satisfy a few bodies...Shane is 33, about 5'10" or so, has dark hair and eyes, announces rodeo, works a ranch, rides, and occasionally reminds me of a few of my obnoxious students (minus the irresponsibility part). He pretty normal looking but has one hell of a personality (I suppose you have to when you work in front of an audience for a living), and really is adorable once you get to know him. He makes me laugh and seems to genuinly want me around...which I think is a good thing because we're both at an age where drawing things out seem really pointless. I figure, 'get to know a person, if they aren't who you want, move on...' No sense in wasting time. Jump in and have fun! If you aren't having fun...well....

Sorry. I'm not posting a pic specifically of him, but maybe he'll pop up on a future slide show or something ;)

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

Details, Details....

In response to the e-mails and comments...Yes, yes I am dating somebody quite regularly again. I'm not jinxing this because I really am just 'living for the moment' concerning this one, but so far it's been a lot of fun. We have a ton in common and enjoy a lot of the same things, plus he actually thinks it's cool I can help out working on his truck or with livestock and isn't intimidated by my independence. We both do our own thing as well and it's kind of nice to be missed and miss in return when he's away for work! He also actually likes having me around and worries when I'm headed home on icy roads or whatnot and asks me to call when I get back. What a nice change of pace! I quite literally forgot what it was like to have somebody truly interested!

He's a rodeo announcer and works on his grandpa's ranch, plus he's getting into breeding bucking stock, which I always thought would be interesting to do if I ever bought my own place. So fun, fun...I have somebody to ride at the arena, help me improve my roping with, hang out with...blah, blah, blah...


Monday, January 01, 2007

Happy New Year!

Crazy last few weeks! First off, I have to say I am sooooo sorry I never made it to the GLI Friday night! I did truely miss everyone, but my trip home had been a whirlwind of activity and I had yet to spend one night with my mom. Since my plane left Saturday I decided I needed to stay in. I hope everyone I missed understands and I REALLY appreciated getting phone calls wondering where I was!

As much as I hate to say it: I think this may have been my last winter travel back to Michigan. For starters, it was a LOT of work getting the ranch ready before I left because of the unpredictable weather we've been having, but that wasn't so much the problem. I wanted to stay in Michigan longer but couldn't because of all the work I have left here. Because of this I only spent one night home with my parents, never did get to see some of the people I woud have loved to visit with and pretty much left exhauseted. It also took me a VERY long time to get back into Albuquerque since the airports had been closed, a VERY long time to drive back to Colorado since the highways had been closed, and to top ALL of it off, my New Year's plans were canceled because of the weather and nobody could get to where we were supposed to be! gets better, I arrived home to discover my tack shed had been left open and horses had toppled over all the grain, a cow had found a crack in the shed wall and dismanteled it to get through, a water tank had overflowed and one heater isn't working for some reason...after putting things in some sort of order to take care of in the morning I went to bed and brought in the New Year's asleep with Maverick the Best Boyfriend Ever in my bed that still hadn't been made from when I left. So, winter trips call for some serious return work it seems...

On a good note. It was a good trip home. It was good seeing everyone I did get to see and it was a good Christmas. My mom bought me a sewing machine and a cookbook so I'm going to attempt to be domestic from time to time. It's not that I'm not familiar with it...I usually just choose not to do it! I also got a cool pink gameboy. So I'm also going to attempt to discover what is so great about video games and try and relate a little better to my students (though I will admit it definetely came in handy at the airports!).

Also - I have met a boy...*gasp*! That's all I'm saying. So other than the disaster I was met with yesterday and had to fix this morning...the New Year may be coming in alright afterall!