Thursday, November 15, 2018

Possum Wrangling.

Tonight, we went possum wrangling.  Something has gotten 5 of my chickens.  I could not figure out what is was, but was pretty sure it was either a racoon or a possum.  We have a large poultry pen, fully fenced with a 7 foot fence all the way around it, and covered in poultry netting.  So, I knew it wasn't a hawk or owl.  And, snakes are hibernating this time of year (are at least are supposed to be, but with the luck we have around here, who knows......)

Tonight, we found out what the predator is.

I have a hook I was needing the husband to hang for me in the chicken coop, so I could hang their feeder.  They kept spilling it where it was, or the ducks would come into the chicken coop and get into it.  As he was hanging the hook, I decided to count the chickens before I locked them in for the night.  I started counting, "1, 2, 3, 4"  then my counting changed to screaming, "that's not a chicken, that's not a chicken".  Husband looks over and gives a nice slow "nope".  Curled up in a nesting box, acting like he belonged there, between 2 hens, was a fat possum.

I went and got a pitch fork, and  got him out of the nesting box and he ran behind a bale of straw.  From there he ran out the people door of the coop and outside and under the duck house.  So, basically he got away.

But tomorrow, I will set traps and catch him.  I will win this battle.

I am sure there are most likely more than one.  And, I will need to figure out how to catch possums in the traps and not cats, chickens and ducks.  Most likely cat will have to sleep in the garage, and I will have to lock up the chickens first.  The ducks rarely use their house-they prefer to sleep in the pen, so hopefully no ducks will get trapped. If I can find where he got into the pen, I can set the trap on the outside and try there.

Friday, October 12, 2018

Missouri Voters Guide McCaskill vs Hawley

Meal Planning

How does a busy family keep supper meals organized?  I am sure there are many methods but this is the one that has worked for our family for quite a few years.

It is simple to do, and has many advantages:
#1 You can start with what you have in your pantry and know what you need to purchase to fill in for the week.
#2 No wondering what do I fix tonight?  You will already have it planned and what you need for it.
#3 No one asking "Mom, whats for dinner?"
#4 The first one home can start planning.
#5 You can cycle your food so that you use up leftovers, such as I am doing this week with the chili on Sunday and chili dogs on Tuesday.

It requires space--either a cabinet, table, counter or what I use is a bakers rack.

You will need one tub for each day of the week, and some index cards.

On the tubs, label each one with a different day of the week.

On the index cards, put your meal or recipe.  You may want to laminate them, or leave as is.  I have them both ways.

Set them up in order.

Now, put your non perishable ingredients into the tubs on the night you want to prepare and eat them.  My Sunday tub is holding chili beans, tomatoes, tomato sauce, angel food cake mix and a can of fruit.  Monday is grilled cheese and tomato soup and blueberry muffins.  Tuesdays card reads chili dogs (to finish up Sundays chili).  Nothing is in the tub (except for the index card reading chili dogs, and a can of corn) as the hotdogs are perishable and I have not made the buns yet.  Wednesdays card says biscuits and gravy and apple crisp, bacon and eggs.  Thursdays need to be changed to a card that reads pizza hut, Fridays is set up for home made chicken and rice soup with apple sauce, and Saturdays for tuna casserole.

So, simple.  What your are eating that doesn't have to be refrigerated goes into the tub.  You can even put a card in the Tuesdays tub that says to take the meat for the Wednesday supper out of the freezer and put in the fridge to thaw.

Friday, September 28, 2018

New information

My friends niece is still missing.  However, there are some new leads=they know no who she may be with and the vehicle.  Possibly in Arkansas.   So, here is the Highway Patrol updated poster.  Please share this to any friends and family you may have in Arkansas or further south.  They believe she is either there against her will, or possibly they went off the road or got into an accident.

Monday, September 24, 2018

A friend of mine has a missing niece Leslea Sueanne Shannon

Please check this poster out.  If you have seen her, or know anything, please call the number on the poster.  She is the niece of a friend of mine.  This is not in her character to disappear like this.  She has children and family who love her and are very worried.  She disappeared from the Warrensburg Missouri area.  They think she was possibly shopping for a car.  She may have disappeared during a test drive.  One person thought they saw her in Sedalia at Walmart, but when looking at security footage, they could not spot her.  Other possibilities may be Branson or Arkansas per some possible tips that have not panned out.

Please, if you know anything about the whereabouts of Leslea Sueanne Shannon please call one of the numbers on the poster  660 747-9133 which is the Warrensburg Police Department or the Missouri Highway Patrol at 800-877-3452.  Or, if you spot her, call your local 911.

also see

Saturday, July 14, 2018


If people would just spend half of the amount of their time praying for the president as they do complaining about him on social media......

Friday, July 13, 2018

Do you know any Foster Families?

Almost everyone knows of at least one family who foster children.  There is a huge need in most parts of the United States for foster parents. The main goal of foster parenting is to provide the child love, safety and everything a normal healthy family has until their own family can be reunited.

If you are wanting to help a foster family out, I have some suggestions and ideas.

First off, foster families do NOT make money or earn their living fostering children.  You have to be able to prove to the state that you can support the children without the state payments.  In my area  the payments depend on the age of the child, but are mostly in the $200s per month.  Here, they also qualify for free insurance, childcare, and free school breakfasts and lunch.  Foster parents get a once a year allowance of $250 for their clothing.  Some children are not with you for a year.

During the time foster kids are in a foster family home they are kids.  Just kids.  They are not labeled as "foster kids".  It is not your business to know the kids background, parents or why they are in foster care.  Respect that.  During this time, they are to be treated as normal kids.  If you invite them over for Christmas, have a gift for them as you would for any other child.  Some of these kids may have severe behavior issues.  Respect how the foster parents address that.  Yes, you may do differently with your own children, but many of these kids have been thru various types of trauma and so discipline is very different.  Don't loudly announce what you would do or intervene unless asked to do so.

Foster kids usually arrive in care with nothing, or just a few things in a trash bag.  So, the family must get everything for them, usually at their own expense--underwear, socks, shoes, clothing, bedding (for each child placement you have you need either generic bedding or a boy set and a girl set, and extra of each for sicknesses and accidents) What has been given to that child becomes theirs.  So, when they move back home, their clothes and toys are theirs to take.

Foster families could use gift cards to take the family out to dinner once in awhile, even if only to McDonalds.   Movie gift cards are also nice.  Also, they could use gift cards to places such as Walmart, grocery stores, perhaps a family pool pass, give them gifts of coloring books and crayons, play dough, age appropriate toys, gas cards as the family will be taking the child to counseling, therapy and such quite often.

Pick and date with the mom and provide a meal for them after asking about food allergies.

When around foster children.  Set a good example, use a clean mouth, don't get angry or upset.

If you notice the family has a new placement, ask if there is anything they need.

Offer to pay the way for a child to go to camp.

Donate music lessons, voice or dance lessons......Buy their scout uniform, help the family at Christmas.

See if your church has a foster ministry.  If not, set one up with a clothing closet, baby equipment, new shoes, new socks and new underwear, good luggage.  Start a fund at your church  to help foster families with expenses, such as needing to repair walls or repaint between placements, or clothing, band instruments, yearbooks, class rings, letter jackets, school supplies and backpacks....

Make it known to the foster mom that if they get a late night placement, you are more than willing to run to the store to her to get what she may be lacking (such as formula, change of clothing for an older child.)   Then, if you do so, don't announce it to everyone.


Navy daughter is back home.  She returned home the end of May.  Since she is in the reserves, she will be drilling once a month while she finished college and at that point she will be going active duty.

Army daughter was able to come and visit for the 4th of July.  The weekend after we had all 5 of the girls home.  It has been several years I think since all 5 have been together.  One daughter is married to an Air Force man, and they have received orders for Korea.  So, the times that all are here are good.  It hasn't been that long ago that we had one living in Ireland and one in Germany.  All are back but not for long it seems.

Friday, April 27, 2018

Sunday, April 15, 2018

My Classroom????

I think the kids in our classroom have spring fever.....This video, pretty much sums up how their attention span has been lately at carpet time......

Greenhouse Update

The greenhouse building is NOT going as planned.  It has either rained or snowed every single day that I have been off work to work on it.  Today, April 15, it snowed.  April 15!!!  So, we wait.  Although the tractor has a cab on it, and I could still dig holes to set the posts, I don't want to leave ruts in the ground, or have the holes filling up with water as I dig.  So, we wait.....and wait....

Thursday, March 15, 2018

Greenhouse Finally Started

Exactly 1 year after when we originally going to start building the greenhouse, it has finally happened.

This isn't going to be a fast build, but the target date to have it finished is May 1. That is 6 weeks out so if the weather is good, we should make it.

Today, I got the first post set.  All my other posts will square up to this one.  It may be the only post set his week as we are supposed to get storms and rain the next 2 to 3 days, but its a start.  I have 9 more to go.

So, in a nutshell, I am building this pretty  much by myself at this point.  I have some days off this week and my husband doesn't.  But, since the post hole digger is on the back of the tractor and the front loader is on the front, I can get it started.

 There is a knack to using a bale spike to get it upright.  It took me a few minutes to figure it out.  As I raised the post the end of the post over the hole wanted to shift, so I had to slowly move the tractor forward as I raised the loader.  Now that I got that figured out, the rest will go much quicker.

The posts I am using are 6x6 posts and very heavy.  These are the posts that were used to build our barn that the tornado hit.  When the builder rebuilt it, he knew I was wanting to build the greenhouse and set the ones that could be salvaged aside.  He also set some tin aside as well, to use for the bottom 36 inches all the way around.  I am doing the bottom in tin, so that if the mower throws a rock, it won't break out the clear panels, and also, to help offset the cost.  That will save me from having to buy 6 of the clear panels. 

Most are of the posts are way too long for this project and they are all different lengths.  After I get the poles set, and start on the roof, we will trim them off with the chain saw.  That way, when I am off work I can still work on this.  If I wait for my husband to cut them down first, I will have to wait for his next day off when it is not raining. and since the forecast is scheduling rain on his next day off, it would be another 10 days before I could start.  So, that part I am doing somewhat backwards.  Since they are different lengths, we will wait until the final post is set to determine the height.  The front will be taller than the back, and I want at least a 30 degree rise in the roof.  The back side will have guttering which will divert the rain into a rain barrel that I bought several years ago.

This is the basic plan I am using.  The tall side will face the front.  I am not putting the roof vents on.  Instead, each short side will have a small window to open for cross ventilation.  The front (taller side) will have 2 doors centered (double doors).  They have a glass front and came out of an old store front in downtown Lawson.  They are antique doors.

I opted to use the clear panels from Lowe's rather than recycling glass windows.  We get a lot of wind here, and the glass just would not last.  Also, I have been using mypoints and swagbucks for earning Lowe's gift cards, so I won't have to pay in full for the panels.

I also want a deck on the front side and a clear panel roof (awning) over the deck.  That may have to be stage 2 as I would like to build the deck out of pallets and I will first need to get those.

Stage 3 will be to get electric and a hydrant put in the greenhouse.  That will probably be a project for next year.