Wednesday, December 10, 2014

A Handful of Blessing...

Although this past year has been one of unusual pain and loss, it is good to ponder the blessings that were received, as well.

To begin with, this spring we had an incredibly good lamb crop.

It was really satisfying to watch them play and grow and watch how well the Maremmas took care of them, even snuggling at night and sleeping with Captain Marbles, who had been rejected by his mother.
For awhile, he thought he was a Livestock Guardian Lamb…

My big brother came to visit for the first time ever (along with my awesome niece and her super son) and the wild horses surrounded us, making for a really memorable, and surreal experience.

Then, when spring FINALLY arrived, the flowers came back to  brighten up my life…

We raised a successful crop of meatie chickens and a half dozen replacement layers for the coop...

As well as some ducks, which are not only a lot of fun to watch, but will supply us with some great eggs as well.

My old horse, Mister, is still feeling his oats, which is a blessing. I didn't get to ride much, but I hope and pray next year that will be different and I can wear out both horses on a fairly regular basis...

SushiMoo had her first calf, a heifer, and turned out to be a really good mama as well as a surprisingly sweet milk cow. Another big blessing is that she does not require the copious amounts of feed her mother did, or to either be milked out twice a day or have nurse calves on her to prevent mastitis because of high production. She makes just enough to feed her calf and ourselves, if I was to milk her regularly, but this year, obvioiusly, I could not, so other than a handful of times we milked her for our own use, she has been just hanging out with her friends, being a mama cow. 

But, those couple of milkings did supply us with some delicious raw milk and homemade ice cream.

The Bosch mixer allows me to make a lot more bread at a time, and my new slicer makes slicing it up a breeze...

We had a bumper crop of fruit this year, which allowed me to put up a lot of strawberry, raspberry, blackberry, apricot and peach preserves...

and enough peaches to can tons of fruit and peach pie filling...

My youngest son and his family came for their annual visit, in spite of my immobility, which went a long way towards helping me feel better.

Abby promptly came in the house and wrote this on the kitchen chalk board:

The girls picked bouquets for me daily, as I was, and still am, confined to the house. They brightened up every table in the place with these...

and this kind lady, my daughter in law's mom, came for the first, and we hope not the last, time this year. She was kind enough to help out doing all the things I SHOULD have been doing, like cooking and dishes, etc. She made it easier for the little one to get used to us, as she only see us 3 days a year, but knows this Grammy intimately. What a neat lady she is.

and grandbaby #14 has arrived safely...

In spite of the pain, there has been much to be thankful for. We were not promised an easy road in this life, only that it would be worth it…and indeed, it is.

*P.S. Ranch Rustics store will be closed from Dec16-30th, as we are going out of state for  Christmas this year, so if you need to order, please get your order in BEFORE that. Thanks and God bless you all and I pray you have a Merry Christmas!!!


  1. What adorable blessings you have :-)

  2. My goodness you have been blessed abundantly this year. Those fruits look fabulous. Sure wish we could grow something worth picking! LOL. I adore the chalk board message. You must have felt much better instantly. *She melted my heart* :) And Grandbaby #14 looks VERY HEALTHY. Blessings indeed.
    I hope and pray that 2015 will be an even BETTER year for you. One with less pain. Big Hugs, CAROL DEE

  3. Thank you for sharing your blessings with us. I love the photos and the glimpse into your life. I know how much you long to be outside, and I pray that 2015 will be the year that happens for you--and that we get to see many more photos of the ranch! May the Lord bless you richly!

  4. !4 grandbabies! Your cup is running over! Safe travels and Christmas blessings on you and your family!
    God bless you Kim!