"On the plains of Oklahoma, with a windshield sunset in your eyes like a watercolor painted sky, you'd think heavens doors have opened."
Fly Over States

Monday, June 6, 2011

Summertime in the Country

It is not officially summer but it feels like it.  Oklahoma has been in such a drought that it sometimes has a dusty smell to the air more akin to August than May.  Things still look lush but we are entering the dry season with little to spare in terms of refilling the water tables.

We've been overrun with turtles that are spilling out of the ground everytime we get a sprinkle of rain.   The turtles tend to wander across the northern and western edges of the yard and you can sometimes see them through my sewing room window.  We moved the tomato plants to that area and the soil is wetter due to the drip irrigation system rigged up by Mr. Wonderful. 

The girls have taken to peering out my sewing room window to try to spot them.
If successful, they race to the door demanding to be let out.  Here is a photo of Evelyn all het up over a turtle on the other side of the fence:
We've rescued one turtle after another but the girls don't seem to hold it against us.  They just go look for a toad or something equally interesting.   Sometimes a bug. 

I should have realized this as a kid but just figured out that a good way to find a turtle is to check along a fence line or other barrier that they can't easily get through.  I also never realized just what masters of camouflage turtles can be.  And fast?  I think all the fables I heard as a child misled me.  In my mind, turtles are slow and plod along.  In reality, some of them book.

We've had a crew out for the last week and a half replacing the roof on the barn.

 The workers scare me to death because they are so fearless. 

It is a really big job.  I didn't know how big it was until I realized a crew of 5 - 6 guys were going to be working on the barn for over a week.

Here are some photos of the upstairs interior.  We just use it for storage:

The guys are having to replace much of the framing because leaks for twenty years have rotted much of it.  The barn's builder had kids that played tennis so they put in a small court, upstairs.  The decking in many places is rotted so we don't go bouncing around upstairs chasing after tennis balls.  Well, actually, even if it wasn't we still wouldn't be chasing tennis balls up there.  Without the roof off, it is also pretty dark, upstairs (we need to replace the lights).  The new roof will have a ridge vent that I hope will also let more natural light in. 
Yesterday, we spent the afternoon at a friend's nearby 400 acre ranch.  They raise goats, donkeys, chickens and various other critters:

Two brand new kids (baby goats) were missing and they speculated the coyotes got them.  They keep the "attack burros" nearby to run off the coyotes but that doesn't always work. 


 The horse's name is Paleface:

 Cushie is a darling but isn't much help against the coyotes, apparently. 
 The requisite spraying of OFF (this is not my leg):
I finally finished the wedding quilt for my son and his wife.  Ahem.  They were married nearly four years ago:
I began this quilt in early 2007, roughly about the time I learned my mother was dying from ovarian cancer.  I knew I would be taking off work to care for her and figured I'd have enough time to finish it before the wedding in August.  It didn't turn out that way.  Mom passed away on Mother's Day Eve, that year, and I only completed the top in time for the wedding.  Between healing up, emotionally, from losing mom; the heavy workload to catch up on after I went back to work, fulltime; grieving when I lost my dog, Jezebel (yes, that sounds silly, I know, especially when you consider I lost mom the year before); packing to move back home; followed by settling back to the good life in Oklahoma... etc., etc., I didn't finish it for four years. 
But it's done now and for my next act, I should probably finish my younger daughter's wedding quilt.  She's been married longer than her brother...

I go down, everyday, to the neighbor's house to see if they have any new calves.  The last one came two weeks ago but as of yesterday, they were still expecting three more.  I haven't checked on them, today but plan to walk down there this afternoon. 

The next door neighbors just brought in a new roan filly.  I can't say as she is the prettiest thing I've ever seen, but she ranks right up there with the most affectionate.   I can't walk by their house without her coming over to get a scratch. 

I've not been blogging too much, these days because, not only do I have little to write about, my days have been happily filled with living the good, slow, summer life. 

Happy Quilting, Penny, Evelyn and Pearl


katiemedarlin said...

I absolutely love your pictures, Penny. Always gorgeous. And for some reason, I really like the goats.

Your finished wedding quilt is gorgeous!!

tisme said...

I love that quilt!! It is just beautiful!
The goats are kinda cute too!

Anonymous said...

I have never seen such a tidy upstairs in a barn!! :) We had a ridge vent put on our house several years ago (the previous owners had already installed a whole-house fan ... but the air had noplace to go out:). Makes the place nice and airy, when we can use it (air quality issues out here in MD and the heat keep the use of it down, especially since my guy has become allergic to so many pollens).

The goats are adorable. Hope you guys get rain soon - we've had more than our fair share so far this spring - the weeds are as big as me!

:) linda

Florida Farm Girl said...

Glad to hear that you are enjoying life now. I do miss hearing from you, but so long as all is well......
The quilt is beautiful. He's gonna love it, even if it is four years late!!! :)

Miriam said...

Congratulations on the finish!! I love how the white (off white?) set off the other colours in the quilt and that border fabric is gorgeous!

Looking at those men on the barn roof scares me!!! If they were working here they would have scaffolding and harnesses!!!

I miss your thought provoking posts, but I am glad you are enjoying the slow life.

How is young Charlie???

Anonymous said...

Love the photos! Glad you are happy and taking life easy.