Monday, September 21, 2009

Junkin'

Friday morning, I'm going to be dropping my boys off at school, then I'm going to disappear for 2-3 days while my parents and I cover half the state looking at "junk". That's right, the 2009 Nebraska Junk Jaunt starts Friday and ends on Sunday! I'm bringing my camera, and hope to have lots of eye candy to show you come Monday.

Until then, I do have a wonderful little find I came across a few weeks ago. Every year, we have a family reunion on the Sunday of Labor Day weekend. My grandpa's family farm, or what is left of it, is located nearby so my mom, aunt, and I went exploring since I had never been there. We stopped at a cemetery to take some pictures of some ancestor's stones, which brought up a few questions I would like to answer.

There aren't many buildings still standing. There is one little 3-room "house" still standing, but it won't be for long. I took a picture of the outside, and will take more pictures when my parents and I head back up there in a couple of weeks. This little building was home to 6 people (grandpa's aunt & uncle, and their kids), and I can't even imagine how crowded it must have been.

Next to that little house, there was another one that had collapsed. As we were walking around the little crumpled house, we were discussing how much of the old wood we would come back for, and I noticed some scroll work in the dirt. I crawled under some locust trees, thankfully avoiding the massive thorns, and realized it was a bed! After fighting with the trees and the wood from the house trying to keep the bed, we finally freed it. It is now sitting in my garage waiting for the spring when I'm going to plant it in a flower bed amid a field of white daisies.












On the way to the farm, there is a beautiful old church. I had my aunt pull over so I could take a picture. I'm hoping that the leaves will be turning (and still on the trees) when we go back. Can you imagine what a beautiful picture that would make? I'm excited just thinking about it!


Thursday, September 17, 2009

My Babies are Growing UP!


Faye passed away on Wednesday, August 12. Mom and I headed for Chadron to take care of the funeral arrangements on Friday, August 14. The funeral was on Monday, the 17th, and I walked through our front door about 11:30 that night. On Tuesday, August 18, I sent my babies off to school. After having both boys home all summer, and the chaos of the 4 days before, I wasn't sure what to do with an entire day all to myself. I unpacked and did some laundry, baked some cookies, washed dishes, cleaned the bathroom (a never ending job at our house!), then I just sat on the couch, staring at the clock begging for 3:00 to arrive.

It finally came, bringing my little guys home. I smothered them with kisses, and spent the couple of hours eating cookies and chatting about the weekend - they wanted to hear all about Chadron, Fort Rob, and Toadstool Park, and I wanted to hear about the fun they had with Jeremy and my in-laws. I heard all about their first day at school, about how they both love their new teachers. Taylor was excited to see his girlfriend again. Landon thought it was unfair that out of the 15 kids in his class, only 3 were boys (they have since gotten a 16th classmate - another girl)!

Then it was time to start supper, and the boys went off to play. Fifteen minutes later, I was looking forward to the second day of school! They started out playing so nicely together, then BAM! They were fighting. Ah...brotherly love!

Friday, September 11, 2009

Weekend Wisdom



"I love my freedom. I love my America."
~Jessi Lane Adams~

Photo found here.


Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Healing Powers of Corn?


The last month has been a rough one, to say the least. August 12, 2009 is one of those days I'd like to just forget. I'm one of those people who look for the silver lining, but I admit that I really wasn't sure if I'd be able to find any good in losing two amazing people.

Maddie
I just don't know what to say. I searched high and low for a card to send to Jetta, but couldn't find one I felt was appropriate. I needed one that said something like, "My heart is breaking over the loss of such a sweet little girl. I'm also completely pissed at how unbelievably unfair life is!" (Okay, I did some serious editing there.) My pain has turned to anger because I really don't understand why she had to leave so soon. Her organs were donated, so whoever recieved them had better do something completely remarkable.

Faye
Faye's passing hit us all a little harder than what we were expecting it to, I think. My grandma had 2 brothers - Charles and Faye, no sisters. Charles married (cancer took him in 1984), but never had children, and Faye remained a bachelor all his life. So, when Faye left, the Stewart name kind of went with him. Charles' widow, Irene, is still here with us, and my younger brother's middle name is also Stewart, but there are no more boys to carry on the last name. In some ways, Faye was also our last link to my grandma, who was taken from us way to soon (she lost her fight with Ovarian Cancer in 1988). The family farm was sold a few years ago to a man who is related by marriage (Irene's nephew), and he is letting our beloved farmhouse fall apart. Do you remember Scarlett O'Hara's dad telling her how important the land is, and how much she loved Tara? That's how we feel about the farm. The farm was Faye's life, so he was laid to rest with a small jar filled with his land. I miss his "farmer talk". I miss talking to him and realizing how fulfilling a simple, uncomplicated life can be. I miss the M&M's he used to buy for my brothers and me. I miss climbing on the stacks of hay bales, getting chased out of the chicken coop by the rooster, riding Sandbur, catching snails in the horse tank, feeding the calves, exploring the hills. I miss him. He was ready, though. He had become friends with a local pastor (Faye has always been a Christian, but has never belonged to a church). The pastor was telling us about a few weeks before Faye passed. They had driven out to the farm, and when they got there, the pastor shut the car off, rolled down the windows, and Faye just laid his head back and closed his eyes as a breeze blew threw the car. Faye just sat there, eyes closed, taking deep breaths, taking it all in. There's no better smell than the air at the farm.

Losing so much all at once made me feel lost. I felt like I was suffocating and was afraid that I was sinking into a depression. I was seriously considering seeing a therapist. Then, a couple of weeks ago, I was driving home from town and happened to notice the corn. It was beautiful. The photo above doesn't do it justice. The corn is starting to turn from green to a gorgeous golden brown, just waiting to be harvested. I saw the waves of green mixed with gold and the purple tassles dancing up to meet the bright blue sky filled with fluffy white cotton, and I felt a calming peace fall over me.

Life is good.

Friday, September 4, 2009

Weekend Wisdom

In honor of the Huskers' first game of the season, this week's WW are a few words that have become an adopted motto of Nebraskans...


"Not the victory but the action; Not the goal but the game; In the deed the glory."
~Hartley Burr Alexander, professor of philosophy at UNL~

In 1923, these words are engraved on the pillar in the southwest corner of Memorial Stadium.


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