Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Channeling Lennon...

This is Boo, our son#4. This was from when he went to Kevo, son #2's, birthday party in June. Kevo's theme was to wear white pants (I didn't ask).
Anyway, Boo is a self taught musician. He plays guitar, piano, drums, harmonica and more. Him and his brother JDrums, son#3, formed a band a few years back. They write their own music all the time.

He was channeling John Lennon here:

NO... not really, actually he grew his hair out to be able to donate it to a kids cancer benefit program. I am so proud of this kid even when he is a bit scruffy.
He is clean shaven now. thank goodness... LOL

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Cali trip...

We headed out to California with the skiddos in tow. When passing through Indio we always go through the area where there are all the windmills to generate electricity. We never realized just how many were there until the skiddos kept saying, “there’s more, there’s more.” LOL

As we get close to the southern Orange County border this is our welcome:

We mainly went to see hubby’s dad, who was sent home from a nursing home to basically live out his life in the comfort of his own home. He is doing remarkably well considering they will not do the dialysis that he would need because his kidneys are beginning to fail. So, it may not be too long.

We arrived at Kevo’s house Friday afternoon. Kevo lives in a million dollar home. He is renting and got a great deal. You see the builder built the homes and could not sell any of them, so Kevo’s girlfriend struck a deal to be able to rent. He is very fortunate. The home is very nice except that you only have about 2 feet on each side that buffer you from the neighbor. And the noise is tremendous. Of course we live on acreage and barely hear any neighbor dogs, so any noise would be a lot to us.


Friday afternoon Pookie Pie and her son, our grandson MLR came over. This is my little smart-alecky cutie grandson.

The skiddos had a super time with MLR.

Then that night Boo, son #4, and his girlfriend came by to visit us. Then Mattress, son #1 and his girlfriend came by to visit to let us know his plans. He had a Yamaha motorcycle that he had to ride to get mileage (Yamaha pays him to test ride), so he would be doing that on the weekend. Here is the bike:

Saturday morning Mattress, Kevo, PookiePie, MLR and the skiddos and us went to see hubby’s dad. In order to not have to take too many cars, Kevo and Mattress rode the motorcycles. We asked Pookie if she wanted to ride with Mattress and she screamed “YES” and Mattress said, “It sounds like she doesn’t want to”… haha, ok you had to be there to get the full funnyness of it. Mattress and Pookie:

Kevo's Harley Davidson:


Anyway, the visit with hubby’s dad....…

Way back when he was a young man, he served as a Merchant Marine in southern Calif. He served on a ship called the SS Lane Victory. So we got on the net to see if we could get something from/about that ship. It would have taken too long, so we asked Kevo, son #2 to see what he could do. He went up to San Pedro on Thursday to check out the gift shop… he got there at 2:45 and even though they were not to close until 3pm, they still would not let him in. He went back on Friday morning and was able to get a book, a picture and a DVD about the ship and its history. THANK YOU KEVO! When we got to his house Kevo gave him the gifts and he just lit up like a child when he saw the picture and book. We sat there and watched the DVD with him. He was sooo happy which in turn made us all happy for him.

Then Saturday afternoon it was beach time. Kevo’s girlfriend Diz got to come with us with their dog… the skiddos had the bestest time.


J is not so sure about the water and Pookie is trying to get him to go in: He eventually got to the point where he was soaked of course.


That night I insisted on having Potato Cheese soup from Marie Callenders for dinner because we don’t have a Marie Callenders here. Mmm, mmm, mmm. Then finally a nice restful evening.

We hit the Denny's Sunday morning... MLR wearing uncle Kevo's hat and R doing what he tends to do best... digging deep for that bugger... LOL

Then it was time to set out for the park with the skiddos, PookiePie, MLR, Kevo and us. We went to a park that was just a flat grassy area way back when I was in junior high and high school. I used to walk through this park to get to school.

J was so cute, he would not let anyone carry his little tractor up the hill, he never stopped until he got it to the top either.



J thought the ducks were going to attack him:






I was amazed at this park. They had added some great landscaping, a skateboard park, a doggy park, duck pond and more. What a change from when I was a kid.

That night we had plans to hit Don Jose’s Mexican restaurant with Mattress, JDrums,/ son #3, Kevo and Diz, PookiePie, MLR and skiddos and us. We always hit the places to eat that we miss having the food from because they don’t have those restaurants here at home… LOL

It was a grand time and we got to see every kid at least once. My heart is happy to know how terribly blessed that I am ,beyond anyone’s dreams, to have the family I do.

Next on the agenda for Calif kids will be in August. We are going to be putting a round pen and we need to do heavy tractor work. So, Mattress and Kevo has volunteered to come on out and help. I have to start a list and draw out some plans of all the things I want to accomplish when we have the tractor. We rent a huge John Deere about 3 times a year to do the heavy duty yard work.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Skiddos...

I love these little skiddos we have in our care. The court day has come and gone about who will get custody while the mother is incarcerated. We found out that the father has lessoned his visits to 2 times a week from 3. We have been instructed that the father is not to know where the kids are cared for, where they attend playday daycare, where I take them to go to the doctors visits... basically they do not want this father to have any contact with the skiddos unless in a supervised and controlled environment. The father has a pretty long arrest record and as far as we know has never paid child support. He apparently lives in a small beat up trailer with almost no furniture.
We found out that the mother will definitely be incarcerated until late Oct when she will have another court date. I can't see that she will get her kids back until she attends a drug program and can prove that she can care for them.
We figure we will have the darlings until early next year.

Here are these cutie skiddos...

J getting sneezed on by Prince

J laughin' so hard after Isis dripped water on him when he was giving her a hug.
Look at the little devilish face... LOL

R being innocent... yea right, he is never innocent!

R giving Noah an apple treat.
The skiddos are great kids considering all they have been through in their young lives.

R has obviously been neglected, he follows me or my dear hubby everywhere. He has to know everything we are doing. Also, it is quite apparent that the discipline was not followed through with because R does whatever he wants even after we tell him NO. He is learning that there are things that are just not allowed.

J, he is 2 and he never stops talking. He doesn't hesitate to say what he wants, he asks for a drink and I will say in a minute and he will ask again and again until I tell him to wait a moment, then he will say... ODAY and wait patiently.

R' and J's mother has been watched by child protective services for several other improper things. R tells us mother sleeps naked and that both R and J sleep with her. There are a few other things that R slowly divulge to us that I just hate to hear. I pray that when it is time for these skiddos to leave us that they will be well cared for and not remember the bad in that their parents do.


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We are off to California to visit 5 of my kids, my fantastic grand son MLR, and my hubby's Dad who is not well.
I will try and get a lot of pics. I do hope to go to the beach when we are there.
bye for now.




Saturday, July 19, 2008

Readin' blogs and then....

I think I have had it!

I go to my blog reading and always love to read and learn from others. I am compelled to leave a comment on every one. Then of course I go to the comment area and write my hilarious witty funny dull comments and then it is that time… I have to be able to do a word verification. This is not on all comment areas, but on most. There lies the problem, I see letters… scrambled letters that are written on a wave or a tilt or what have you. This should be very simple, all one has to do is type the letters you see into the box and click submit in order for your comment to be saved. Now, I don’t proclaim to be the smartest gal around, but I can read and I am a pretty good speller. BUT, I don’t want to mention how many times I type the word displayed to verify and it does not accept the letters I have typed.

Anyone else have this amazing glitch in their computers that doesn’t listen to what your fingers type? Ahhahaha!

Thursday, July 17, 2008

TRuck.... a great kid

My son TRuck calls from work and tells me he is coming home early. He had phoned earlier in the day to ask me to call Ver*zon to see if they will replace his phone with a different style. He has replaced his phone 3 times in the last 4 months, the speaker keeps blowing on it and now it just shuts off by itself and stays off for up to an hour. So, I get Ver*zon to allow him to change to a different model, (thanks me). He is happy to learn that, but unhappy that he has to drive almost 40 miles to get to a Ver*zon store to do the exchange.

Anyway, he gets home, takes his shoes off and plops in front of the TV to play a little Xbox before he goes. Then back up again and I don’t really notice what he is doing, but he is up to something, I am sure I will find out later. He plops back down to play “Call of Duty”, but gets killed a little too much so decides he will hit the road.

He’s gone from the house about 15 minutes and I hear a sloshing sound. I realize the washing machine is running. I knew I would find out what he was up to. But I have never heard that kind of sound coming from the machine before. I hurry to check what the heck is wrong… oh my gosh… the kid is washing clothes… OK he washes his clothes all the time, that is not what I am concerned about. It is that he is washing a small load, have I not taught this kid better? Doesn’t he know that you are suppose to put in clothing until it packs it so full the clothes can barely move and put in as little soap as possible to get the most out of your time and money??? No one puts 5 shirts and a few pairs of socks in the washer…what was he thinking??? GEEZ…kids!

What Shape??

I am out of shape! I know this because trying to keep up with the skiddos (foster kids) we just got is tougher than I remember it being. Of course being wiser older, being a little less thin fatter, the weather being hot as hell heck and having little no time doesn’t help. I was going to get out the weed whacker today, but it needs a gas/oil mixture that we don’t have right now. I was going to put the glass cabinet doors on the cabinets we placed in the computer room but we don’t have the proper size screws right now. I was able to modify a vacuum bag we had on hand to fit the vacuum, so I can at least do that. I don’t ever go into town unless there are many things we need and/or we have to go to several places because driving that 30 miles ain’t worth going for a pack of screws…LOL

During the work week I think about all the things I want to accomplish on my day off (Thursdays) and I even make a small list (yep my lists again) and then when Thursdays come I have all these good intentions, but then way too often I end up wanting to take it easy and just browse the net reading all the cool blogs. What can I say... it’s addicting. Of course, I would rather be viewing a cowboy in his wranglers... HA!

I am going to give all the horses a bath, a good brushing and pick their feet out. By the time I get done with that I will be whooped because I am OUT OF SHAPE!!! LOL

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Camping n' quads and horses...

I love this weather. I want to go camping and I want to take the quads and the horses.

The last time we went camping when we had some of the kids out from California to visit. We had 4 of our 6 kids together and what a joy. We went out to a nice place where there are a lot of trails for quads, humans or horses.

Me and my boys and a neighbor friend went out on our quads. TRuck knew of a good trail to take that would bring us through some free range areas. There was one spot where I got myself in a rut, if you could keep the quad straddled you would drive right on through. I was straddled but creeped up too quickly on my son Boo in front of me and had to slow down and the quad slid into the rut…. LOL. Come to find out but this was the most treacherous trail in this neck of the woods, thanks son! But TRuck to the rescue and on we went. About 15 minutes later in a wooded area we all come to a abrupt halt behind Boo. We didn’t see why originally. TRuck was behind me, I was 5th in line. Then we saw it, not 10 feet from where the trail will go is a bull. A BULL, I say. This is a picture of what we saw (not one I took):


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OKAY…. Not that kind of bull……..LOL… this kind:

The bull just stands there looking at us silly people as we watch him intently. TRuck comes around all of us and just eases into the small clearing and tells us to just go through. We all make it and that bull did not move an inch, he probably thought what stupid humans we were being afraid of him. We got back to the campsite and had a great laugh.

Yep, camping was always so much fun and besides where else could a family of 8 (plus each kid had to have a buddy along) could stay for just about nothing.

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Old kids/New kids...poor babies...


We had these 2 little boys, D and J, from June 17th until a few hours before we went to Wyoming on July 2nd. Here they are playing in a tiny turtle pool. (I have not shown their faces for their protection).

We were going to possibly get them back after we returned from our vacation, but this seems to be not the case. It looks like some long lost relative has come forward to go through the process of actually adopting them. The parents rights had been severed about a month ago. They had been in the foster care system since October of 2007. I cannot figure out where were the family members before now. But it's not my business.

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Now we get home from Wyoming and try and get back into the reality routine... having to work, clean my house go shopping, care for the horses and a little freedom from having the wee ones under foot.
Then Thursday at 2:30 a.m. my cell phone rings, I was pretty deep in sleep because I thought it was my alarm, but it was too dark outside for that. I grab my phone and it is the gal that does the placements for foster kids. There was 2 little boys that needed to be placed. We said yes of course. We agree to meet in town at the local grocery store to pick them up because the child protective services lady had to come from the 3rd town over to bring them out to us. The boys are darling little blonde, blue eyed kids. They are 2 and 4 years old. They came to us wrapped in blankets with the older one in shorts and a t-shirt and nothing else, the younger one in a wet diaper, a pair of pants and a tank top and shoes. Apparently this is how they were when the police stopped the mother for driving under the influence of meth at close to midnight. One child was not in his car seat, the younger one only strapped in with the upper strap around his neck. This is not the first offense this mother had for being incarcerated for having a DUI with meth. In fact it looks like she had her court hearing for the first offense the day before this arrest. It does not look good for this woman to get her kids back any time soon. As far as we know, the father is not in any shape to take the children either. We will see this coming week.

I just want to strangle these people that do this to their children!!
In the meantime.... my house is filled with precious noise of these rambunctious little kiddos. They are well behaved with the younger one having a little bit of devil in him. For however long we have them, we will give them our love and affection and a safe place to be. They love the horses and play with the goat and are doing remarkably well considering all that has happened. I will keep you all posted as time goes by.

Off to bed for me... HAha , and it is only 8:45.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Wyoming Trip...

We're Back... ok, we've been back since Sunday night... yippee!

Our mini vacation...
We started our trip on July 2nd at 4 pm. Heading out going through Flagstaff and up toward Page, AZ. The drive was good, traffic was light. We rented a cute little Chevy Aveo that actually did pretty good on the climbs and it flew on the decends…LOL.

I am amazed to see some of the American Indian housing areas along this route between Flagstaff and Bitter Springs, AZ. What terrible living conditions they have. Most are run down, old, manufactured homes that have no stem walls, just up on the pilings with steps to the doors. Almost all dwellings looked to be just dropped onto hunks of land with no thought of placement based on terrain. The majority of families also had round dwellings that were stick built, apparently these are used for worship and/or meal preparation from what I have heard. I am even more amazed that there are very little animals of any kind that these people have. I think I counted a total of 5 horses at what looked to be 2 home sites just south of Bitter Springs. We have traveled this road one other time when we went to Lake Powell, but it still is amazing for the scenery and also at times depressing to see that these Native American Indians live as they do. Unfortunately I have heard that many of these Indians tend to be alcoholics by the time they are in their early teens and that so many live off government contributions of some sort. It is a matter of choice for these people I imagine.

We took the turn off at Bitter Springs and went through Jacob Lake, Arizona and made a quick pit stop to pee and grab a bite to eat. Jacob Lake is located at the junction of 89A and SR67 in the Kaibab National Forest. This lake, albeit is small, is actually supplied only by rain and snow melt. Located on top of the Kaibab Plateau that is known as the “waterless mountain” because it has no streams or running water feeding into it. It was dusk when we arrived and I did not get the camera out. Dang it! The soup was good, but a little expensive at this little cafĂ©, but what do you expect out in the way-out boonies.

We finally pulled into Kanab, UT at 9:40pm (which was 10:40pm Utah time) and we went to the little hotel I had made our reservations at… the Bob Bon Inn:

I made the reservations online and even spoke to a Bob to let them know we would not be arriving until late. We rang the buzzer, no one came. We rang it again.. no one came. We grabbed one of the business cards and called the number and talked to Bob who came to the office. He said we did not have a reservation and that they were full. GREAT…. GRAND….WONDERFUL …as my youngest son would say! Bob got on the phone and got us a room down the street at the Treasure Trail Motel:

This lovely nice okay decent hotel was sufficient to sleep at (the bathroom was very clean). The floor was obviously cement covered with indoor/outdoor carpet. The walls were cement block painted white. When you walked from the foot of the bed to the head of the bed you actually would walk uphill. Ok.. enough said about this place…set cell phones to go off at 5am and sleep.

Thursday morning 5am, awake and on the road again. Gosh what fantastic green valley’s we go through as we travel toward Park City UT where we meet up with Boo (son #4) and his girlfriend JM and her 3 kids. We hurry on into Evanston, WY where we will stay for the remainder of our trip.

Evanston is not really flat, nor is it mountainess (that isn’t really a word, but you follow me, right?) I find that it is kind of like continual rolling hills.

JM works for a man that owns the High Country Inn, the Purple Sage Golf Course and Bar & Grill, the Sinclair gas station and the Wyoming Downs racetrack, so the hotel stay, all the meals, the day at the racetrack and anything bought at the Sinclair gas station market was paid for… YEEHAW!

We settle in the first evening and have a nice quiet time at the hotel. This is our room:

Here is the view out our hotel room window to the golf course and to the Purple Sage Bar & Grill.


Friday we decide to do some geocaching (www.geocaching.com ) with our son while JM does some job interviews and works with the hotel staff and on the computers there at the hotel. We will meet up later in the evening to go to the local rodeo.

We find 4 geocaches. One of which was located up on a hill behind an elementary school, here is the view from right behind the school building:


Another was near a Bison Park, look what we saw:




These animals are huge. They would rock slightly with each beat of their heart. Kind of wavering in the wind but with no wind around. This park is home to many bison. They actually allow natural breeding of these bison here. Apparently there are places that breed to be able to have bison shipped into parks for hunters to hunt. This park does not do this.

Friday night.. off to the Evanston Rodeo. Barrel racing was the big event here, there were about 15 girls competing. Some were from as far as Heber Valley, Utah.

They also had a chicken chasing competition for the wee ones:

I just love little local rodeos like this! The rodeo bullfighter performed with his young son and a baby son, see picture below. He travels throughout Wyoming to all the rodeos, big and small. What a life that must be.


Then back to the hotel room to freshen up for dinner at the Purple Sage Bar & Grill… mmmm! Then we went bowling.. HA what fun! Then fireworks time. We were amazed at so many fireworks going off. Of course there was 2 or 3 huge fireworks stores right there in Evanston. I guess any kind of fireworks are legal there.

Saturday off the races. We passed a nice area where Black Angus roamed:

Wyoming Downs Race Track:


We had the best time! We sat in the VIP section. We had monitors to watch the races on and food at our fingertips. There were even a few couches for the kids to lie around on. We even won about 50 bucks… LOL

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Sunday morning came too fast…. We had to start the trip home.

Some of the little towns we passed through in Utah…

Coalville, population 1451, had the most amazing creeks and beautiful greenery along the highway.

Springville, this place even had a minimum speed limit posted on the highway. I guess some of the population (25,309) liked to really mosey their way around here.

Heber Valley, population 8,624, a lot of alfalfa and hay fields here in different stages of growth. The typical settled town that no doubt at one time back in the day was a booming town with old rundown brick buildings on the main street that no doubt housed lively businesses, but now house emptiness.

Levan, population 834, this was even smaller than Coalville, it did not have a main street to speak of, but again filled with fields of hay of one sort or another.

Once in Gunnison, we pulled over just long enough to grab a picture:

Mt Carmel, population almost zero, most people live in the outskirt cities but almost 200 people work in Mt Carmel. Now this was a cute little town. This is just big enough that I would like to live in a place like this if I didn’t live where I live now.. hehehe.

Then through Hatch, this place cracked me up because they had 2 “sheriff” vehicles parked, one at each end of the town. These obviously were permanent fixtures because of the dust and grime on them and growth of weeds around the tires to deter drivers from speeding. I can imagine they were just the shell of the vehicles even. They had to be maybe 1995’s Ford Broncos. Anyway… too funny.

We stopped in Panquitch to get gas. Then into to Kanab, UT, where we stopped just long enough to grab a few snacks. We thought we were going to a Denny's here, but it was a Denny's fish and tackle shop so we ended up stopping at a gas station/Wendy's/market... LOL

I grabbed a picture reak quick.. this is the Kanab Cemetery.

Traveling from just outside Page, AZ, we would get caught in sporadic bursts of thunderstorms. Hubby drove the whole way home (thank you honey!!!)

Back home.. yeehaw! I love vacations, but it is great to be home! Back to reality and time to get things ready for work…
Monday comes, work and horse riding class. Tuesday we had a meeting with a gal from foster care. Wednesday night we sit down and watch a rented movie (The Other Boleyn Girl)….

Then before I could blink, it is now Thursday and I have finally been able to write about our trip. But one chore called me before I could, I went out and cleaned the water troughs and mucked the stalls a little and it is a good thing because now we are having a real good monsoon going on. Now is a nice time to sit and write this and watch the weather. whewwwww, done...BUT..................

I cannot even get on the internet to get this posted. LOL!

Ahh, enough of the storm has passed so I can post this.... yippee skidoodle!

Now I have a few hours so I can go and do a lot of catching up with reading my favorite blogs.


Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Happy 4th all....

Mini vacation.... we all need them once in a while.

We are taking off the minute I get off work on the 2nd and heading out to Wyoming. I will write and do pics as soon as I can. (the laptop is traveling with us).

I wish everyone a fantastic 4th of July and a great weekend!

Safety tips from Rocco...

Rocco from the TV show “Cowboy U” was at the Equifest that we recently attended.

Here are some of the safety tips he mentioned:

1. He said that when you are going around behind a horse that it is best to stay as close as possible to his hind quarter while your hand runs along the side, then butt, then to the other side, this way if the horse decides to kick, you are most likely going to get a “warning” by feeling the horse begin to move. Basically if you walk around the back of a horse, you are safer very snug against the horse’s body or 10+ feet away.

2. He said that when tying a horse, never tie them lower than their mid neck height and never tie them with a permanent knot if at all possible, always use a quick release one. And never give more than about a 2 foot length of rope between the horse the tied end.

3. He said that to approach a horse always do it from the side, best is from the side and slightly front of shoulder area and that you should talk to the horse when you approach him/her. Horses have 2 blind spots, directly in front and directly behind them.

4. It is best to use leather halters, (it's hard to tell, but this is a leather halter) Rocco won’t use anything else.
But that if you use a nylon halter that you should never do the strap other than to put it thru the first way through the buckle and place the stopper in the hole, do not then send the strap back thru the bottom of the buckle.

He also hates those nylon rope halters, like below, for anything other than looks. He says they can easily cut into the horse’s skin if the horse bolts while tied, they basically have no give. He says there are people that think this is a good tool to teach with, but he doesn’t think so at all.

(picture from the internet, not my horse)

5. No horse is truly completely safe to be around. Even his appaloosa, which he has had and trained since it was a baby. Even though he can touch it, walk anywhere near it, rub on it, undo and redo it’s halter, snug up the girth, have the horse follow his every move and so on and so on, when Rocco took his cowboy hat off and threw it at his horse, the horse flinched and stepped back. He said the horse trusts Rocco, but not that flying hat, so do not think your horse is a perfectly safe horse to be around. Always be aware.