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A Give-Away!!! Enter to Win!

Remember in the movie Forrest Gump when Forrest buys his shrimping boat and he discovers that shrimping is hard.  He only catches five shrimp, and the black man jokes that a couple more and he could make himself a cocktail?
Remember that old black man says, “you ever think of naming this boat?  It’s bad luck to have a boat without a name.”
So he names it the most beautiful name in the wide world:  Jenny.
Recently me and J-Dub bought a place.  A trailer house in the country.  I love our little place.  It’s my quiet oasis.  An escape.  Our little ranchette, our ranchito, our little trailer house on the prairie.  
But as much as I love it, we’ve been having some bad luck:
Day 1—I sliced my hand open ripping up carpet (blog to follow someday).
Day 3 and 4—I was home sick from work throwing my guts up.
Day something else—our guinea bird that we inherited broke his leg and then was eaten alive.
Day something else—Jason’s horse got sick
Day 4 or 5 days later—-Jason’s horse got sicker

Three days ago—-Jason’s horse died (blog to follow someday).

Too much sickness, death and pain for 4 weeks.

I’m a tad bit superstitious, so like Forrest, maybe it’s bad luck to have a trailer house in the country without a name.  Because right now we just call it “The Place”.

J-Dub calls me up.  “Where you at?”
“I’m out at The Place.”

Or I might ask him, “What are your plans.”
“I’m going to work on The Place.”

“Where’s our broom?”
“I took it to The Place.”

Even my mom is calling to say, “I’m coming out to help you work on The Place.”

We’ve gotten accustomed to it so far, but it just doesn’t sound very homey and I don’t think it will look good hanging on an arch above a cedar lined entrance.  Someday.

Jason and I have tossed around a couple of ideas, but we are having trouble roping the right one. 
So I’m having a little contest right here on my blog.
I’d like all of you who read this to submit suggestions of names for our place.

Bring on your ideas.  Stop our bad luck!!! 
Give us a name for our new little homestead and you could win a $25 gift card from Lowe’s Home Improvement.   Since that’s where I’m spending most of my money right now, it only makes sense. 

To enter to win, just think of something clever, cute, original, homey, ranchy, or catchy for us to call our new home, make sure it has good luck attached, then leave it in a comment with your name and you could win.

We’ll pick our  favorite from among the entries, and if we hate them all, we’ll just pick a winner at random!!!

This contest is going to run for a week so all you creative minds can think, and think, and think, and think.
Enter to win with as many names as you can think of.

Winner will be announced sometime next weekend 🙂

Isn’t this fun??????

Now leave a comment on here.
Down below.
See that blue comment word? 
Click it!

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The Guinea’s a Goner

Earlier I introduced you to my friend, the guinea bird.

Unfortunately I must report that he fell upon a tragic accident. 

My husband found him hanging upside down on the fence with one of his legs caught between two pickets.  We don’t know how long he had been that way.  He was still alive and Jason rescued him from this position.  But his leg or hip was obviously broken and was dragging behind him.  He couldn’t fly, and could barely hop.  When we tried to get near him, he flapped his wings furiously, and attempted to run, and usually fell on his face.  Jason thought we should just shoot him, but me being the optimist thought maybe he’d recover.  So we placed him in the backyard and shut the gates so that nothing could get in there, like a coyote.  I bought some food, and we watered him. 

He lasted like this for three days.  And then I didn’t notice him in the backyard.  Come to find out, something got a hold of him and killed him.  Jason shielded me from awful images, and had disposed of his body before I noticed it.  We are suspecting it was a hawk that we’ve seen around there a couple of times.  Please don’t dwell on his last moments.  Don’t picture it.  Don’t think about it.  Go to your happy place.
It’s a hawk eat guinea world.

As my niece Ashlynn would say, “When it’s their time to die, it’s just their time to die.” 

Aint it the truth.  Aint it the truth.

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Before and After #1

My husband and I have been engrossed in a trailer house remodel since the beginning of the month.  It is hard dang work.  After hours and hours of grueling labor, sweat, dirt, and eating vienna sausages from a can, I finally have a before and after picture to show off.

Front Door Before: 

Prepare yourselves to be amazed by this transformation!
 Front Door After:
To be continued………….   🙂
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Some Help From My Friends

Yesterday I posted about my new, old home and my bucket list. 

Today, because I am inspired by #4 on my list, which read “own chickens, goats, cows, ducks, and barncats” I thought I’d introduce you to a few new friends I’ve met.

This life in the country is going to take some getting use to.  Pictures were taken at dusk with a camera phone, so they aren’t the greatest.
 This spider is about the size of a Andre the Giant’s fist.  Not really, but seriously, the spider’s out here are not your common house spiders.  They’re eating beef for dinner.

 This is a snake skin.  To quote my dad, “if you found a snakeskin, the owner’s around there somewhere.”  I’m sure he is and the first time I see him or any of his cousins, I’ll be sure and pee my pants right on the spot.

While my 11 year old niece Ashlynn was rummaging around exploring, she heard a meow.  And since she’s the cat whisperer, she actually caught this frightened little cat. 

We fed it a can of vienna sausages.  We’ve seen about 3 more cats since then, but they are wild as the wind and there ain’t no catching them.

This is a guinea that lives in the backyard, or outside of the backyard, it wanders wherever it wants.  It is wild as well and doesn’t let anyone close to it.
And finally, my friend the sunset. 
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The Queen of the Doublewide Trailer

I have a list.
It’s sort of my bucket list that I began a couple of years ago. 
There’s about 40 things on there that I want to accomplish in my life here on earth.  And it’s a work in progress.
You can read about it here.
Actually I’m very glad I blogged about it, because you see,  I’ve lost it.
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Number 1 says “Own land in the country. “
And hooray for us, because as of a couple weeks ago, my husband and I purchased a little bit of acreage outside of town. 
Yea!  Cheers! Hoo-rah!

And maybe not so hooray-ish, is that instead of a wonderful, historic, restored, beautiful farmhouse with a wrap-around porch like I imagined in my mind, there is a 1978 trailer house instead.

Yep, a trailer house and an old one to boot.
Not exactly a dream home, but it’s a home nonetheless.
Now I’ve really had to put my money where my mouth is since I claim to be all about living simply and simplifying my life, and not worrying about possessions,  and all that jibber jabber I’ve been talking for the past few years.

So J-Dub and I have diligently been working, with some help from our friends, trying to make this place not look like a trailer and feel more like a home.  But at the same time, trying not to sink a whole lot of money into it, believing that it is simply a stepping stone to a permanent home later…. with a foundation.

 Jason’s new term of endearment for me is his “queen of the doublewide trailer”
If you don’t know the Sammy Kershaw song, you’ll need to listen to it below.
http://www.youtube.com/v/iICDCj-qOEU?fs=1&hl=en_US

We’ve got big dreams for our trailer and lots of paneling to paint in the meantime.

 I’m going to be posting before and after pictures of our Extreme Makeover Trailer House Edition, as soon as we actually get something finished.

So in the meantime please ignore the paint in my hair.

Your Majesty,
(yes, it’s ok if you call me that)
Angel

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Bird Flu. Swine Flu. Goat Flu too?

On Sunday, I had a wonderful experience of meeting a fellow named Tom and making goat cheese right in his kitchen.
Although it involves quite a bit of science and chemistry, enzymes, bacteria, and heat, it wasn’t too terribly confusing.  Cheese making can get a bit complex, but this was a simple basic beginner method.

Step 1 is to milk a goat.  I didn’t actually get to milk the nanny goat.  I was looking forward to this, but nevertheless.

We began by pouring goat’s milk in a big pot. 

 And heating to boiling, but not a degree more.

After it boils, lemon juice is added, and the cheese makes it’s curd (as in Little Miss Muffett, sat on her tuffett, eating her curds and whey)

Then it was poured through a cheese cloth.

 Drained completely of its whey.
Salted, then pressed.

Wa-lah! Cheese!  Creamy, delicious goat cheese.  This simple process is called chev cheese.  I’m not sure of the spelling, but this cheese can be eaten right away with no aging involved.

A different method of making cheese involved using Rennet tablets which can be bought in the pudding aisle at the grocery store. 
 

There are several cheese recipes in the packet.  We attempted this method, but it was way more confusing for my little brain, and something when awry with the heating or the gas-iness of the recipe, or perhaps it might’ve been the fact that I was not gentle enough with the cheese and made the curd too tiny.  But Tom ended up making ricotta out of it.   I was about “cheesed” out by this point.  It had taken several hours and I can only handle so much new learning at one time.
 
So we went out to meet the goats.  There were three nannies named Ivy, Angel and someone else, but my memory fails me. 
And there was Billy, the male.  

He was the stinkiest, foulest creature I have ever had the pleasure of being molested by.  On second thought, maybe not.  But on with the story.  He rubbed his stinking, foul head against my leg and followed me around like Mary’s little lamb, minus the adorableness.  He reminded me of a bad date.  I attempted shoo-ing him, he wouldn’t shoo.  I attempted canine words of “No!  Go!  Get!”  to no avail.  His odor was a tad bit akin to the stench of the cheese we had just made and I began to get rather nauseous.   
 
About 14 seconds after leaving their house, I started feeling rather ill.  I couldn’t help but associate it with the cheese, and I refused to allow the cheese to be the cause of my distress because it is such a basic, old fashioned, pure farming activity.  I set my mind to determine the cause of my upset stomach. 
 
 I mentally retraced my lunch of the day, which was several hours earlier and I thought it rather unlikely that I would just then be sick from it. 

I dismissed the cause of my sickness to working in an elementary school classroom where children carry a plethora of stomach bugs, diseases, and overall grossness which I could easily contract by touching an eraser cap.

Therefore, after experiencing a complete and total barf-o-rama (name that movie) and with the abundance of scientific-ness I acquired in my brain with the art of making cheese, I can only conclude from my research that I contracted a serious sickness from Billy, the disgusting goat that I came into contact. 

 I have unofficially, unconfirmed that I have “Goat Flu”.

It’s the only thing that makes sense.
 
I am fully expecting to receive a Nobel Prize for my latest discovery.
Just you watch.

Scientifically Yours,

Angel
(friend of 7-up and Saltines)