Thursday, March 31, 2011

Can I get an "I told you so!"

Last October, Scott's employer provided them with a flu shot. Scott strongly encouraged me to take the kids into a local pharmacy so we could all have a flu shot. I put him off by telling him I was still thinking about it. Well, soon the time for a flu shot was gone and the kids and I had none.

My reasoning was that Morgan is so rarely sick and Zane needs to get sick now so he won't be sick when he starts kindergarten. Besides, influenza is just a natural part of the winter months. Just like wind and snow, it is to be expected.

Morgan missed two days of school for illness in first grade. She has now missed 6 days for illness in second grade. (We're not counting her tummy troubles.) Her teacher is so good to help her make up the work but she really struggles for several days. I feel awful that she has missed so much!

My dear husband has not once said, "I told you so." He simply asks if I need him to pick up something from the store. He has not put guilt on me at all. He merely brings home more popsicles. While the rest of us are coughing, feverish, and achy he goes off to work. When he comes home he tolerates our grumpiness (and the messy house) and helps me with dinner.

I have learned my lesson. And I am thankful for such a wonderful husband!

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Time to Pause

I love this sick little boy! He is so sweet and even sweeter when he is sick. With every glass of juice or popsicle I hand him he replies with a tender "Thank You". And then there's the gentle "I'm sorry" when his popsicle drips on the floor. But my favorite is the tender "Can I just snuggle with you" request. I hate seeing him so sick, but I must admit I am loving the calm and gentle little boy he is right now.

I think sometimes we need sickness in our lives just to give us time to pause... take a break from all the hurrying and relax a moment.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Chopped Champion

Morgan plopped the pay dough bucket down in the middle of the kitchen table. As she opened it Zane said, "Take a look at what's in your basket." Morgan pulled out a container of play dough, some plastic dishes, and a plastic knife.

Zane said, "You have 5 minutes to make your dish. Ready... Go!" Morgan began quickly rolling and chopping her play dough into different shapes and putting it on her plastic plates. After a few minutes Zane started the count down from 10. When he reached one he said, "Step away from your dishes." Morgan promptly stepped back from the table and threw her hands in the air.

Zane then asked Morgan what she had made. She reminded him that he needed to taste her dish. He pretended to take a bite and looked up at the ceiling in thought. "Remember to tell me it needs a little more salt," Morgan reminded him. Which he did.

Then, Zane proclaimed Morgan the winner. It's pretty easy to be the champion when you compete against yourself.

I think we have watched too many episodes of Chopped.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Morgan Update

Yesterday we made another trip to Scottsbluff to meet another doctor, this time a surgeon. The surgeon said the lump does not feel like a cancerous tumor but feels like a lipoma or fatty tumor. She said it may continue to grow or it may be done and just sit there. She doesn't think it is causing the tummy pain but there is a slight possibility that it might. She told us to think about whether or not we want to do the surgery.

The surgeon was worried about making a scar on Morgan's belly. She said the scar would grow as she grew and wouldn't look very pretty with her bikini. "Ummm... yeah, I don't wear a bikini," was Morgan's answer to that.

The lipoma is located right were Morgan's waistband sits. My theory is that her pants push on it and that's why it constantly hurts. I also think it bothers her just knowing that it's there. Either way, we are going to try to schedule surgery for the end of May. That way she won't miss a bunch of school.

Her heartburn pain seems to be under control with the Previcid so we will continue that. The GI doctor wants us to stop using it in April and see how she responds. If she starts having pain again then we will do some more testing for acid-reflux.

So, the journey continues. At least I feel like we're getting some where.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

My Cowboy

Scott is feeling left out. It seems I never blog about the adventures in his life. I told him he needed to do more cute things. Can cowboys be cute? In a tough sorta way?

Scott was brought to the feedlot here in Nebraska because of his cattle doctoring skills. With his experience and help from consulting vets, he has developed a program that keeps medicine costs down and cattle alive. The cattle owners like this. He has been the main doctor since he came here and really enjoys what he does. He spends half of his day on his horse pulling the sick cattle from the pens and the other half doctoring.

Because of Scott's efforts, and his ability to train some less experienced cowboys, their team has brought the death loss to an all time low for the company. The feedlot has been filled, beyond capacity, as cattle owners want their cattle to be raised here. Even though they have a small crew, they are able to care for over 23,000 head with a huge success rate. Summer time usually slows down, but that's not the plan this year. The owners are making arrangements to keep this feedlot at capacity year round.

A couple weeks ago the Cow Boss (or Cowboy Manager) gave his 2 week notice. (His wife is going to school in another town and isn't always able to come home on the weekends. He found a job closer to her.) The feedlot has struggled to find good cowboys so this added to the stress they were already feeling as they would now be even more short handed. (They have weeded out the ram-and-jam cowboys and are looking for a more gentler kind - hard to find.)

The Feedlot Manager called Scott in and asked him if he would move up to the Cow Boss position. Scott has had that position at 2 other feedlots and politely declined. (It involves more paper work and computer work and less hands-on cattle work.) He agreed to step into the Assistant position and continue to be in charge of the doctoring. (The Assistant Cow Boss only has to do the paper work 2 days a week. That's not so bad.) Another reason he declined was to let one of the guys that has been there many years move into the position. They work well together so the management of the cowboy crew will really be a team effort.

I'm really proud of my hard-working, cute cowboy!

Scott's grandpa always said, "If you love what you do you'll never work a day in your life."
My cowboy is proof of that.

This is where my adventure as the wife of a cowboy began - Melba, Idaho.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

What's That Green Stuff?

At one of Morgan's recent doctor appointments, I made the stark realization that we no longer eat enough vegetables. When we had a garden and grew our own it was much easier, and less expensive, to eat vegis with every meal. (Scrambled eggs with diced tomato is my favorite breakfast.)

This week I decided to try and incorporate a variety of vegis into our meals. My children have become very picky and it seems that green beans are their favorite. We have them in various cuts and frozen or canned. That's about it for variety though.

Watching the Food Network shows with my husband in the evenings has also inspired me to have a desire to expand my cooking techniques. I do love to try new recipes! I am on the hunt for some good, kid-friendly, vegetable dishes.

We tried Sweet Potato, Apple, Bacon Hash this weekend. My husband and I thought it was delish. (Who wouldn't love a vegi side dish with bacon in it.) Morgan thought it was carrots and struggled. Zane struggled with the onion. (I left out the pumpkin seeds.) We will be trying this one again though.

Sunday I made a yummy stew with loads of vegis. Zane pushed all the green stuff to the side. Morgan picked out the meat and whined about the carrots. Hummm... I'm going to have to find a way to disguise these vegis. My mom used to put grated zucchini in lots of stuff and we never knew. I can do this.

The goal: Serve more vegis and still have an enjoyable mealtime with my children.

Thursday, March 3, 2011


I had been sleeping peacefully when I awoke to what sounded like a massive hail storm. As I listened to the pounding on my roof I decided it just couldn't be. Then I heard a loud woosh and what sounded like a million chirping birds outside my window. I peaked out of the blinds and this is some of what I saw.

I don't have a wide angle lens, and this was taken from my bedroom window, but there were hundreds of birds. It was amazing how they would all fly up to the tree or to the roof and then back to the ground - as one massive herd of birds. They seemed to be in constant communication with each other as they worked together in perfect unity.
And there was no more sleeping for me.