Category Archives: Growing Up

Happy Father’s Day

I have most definitely been blessed with one of the best dad’s out there! Few things bring me as much joy as giving him a hard time…keeps him young! Or something like that!

Always letting me ride along, letting me get away with things we both knew wouldn’t fly with mom, even taking the blame sometimes when mom was angry about something he saw as nothing to get worked up over. Maybe spoiling me more that my older siblings.

He taught me all I know about horses. He taught me how to give shots when working cattle and always said I was the best shot giver he ever had. He taught me how to sort and move cattle and how to get them in. Taught me how to fix fence and drive the tractor and how to drive a team of horses. Never treated me different than my brother out on the farm. Stood up for me when his father said I should study something besides agriculture in college.

This man wasn’t supposed to live to see my high school graduation day….he was in Nam and Agent Orange has been a part of our lives as long as I can remember…he’s too bullheaded, still works harder than the rest of us at age 74. So, I do know how fortunate and blessed we are to still have him to harass!

He’ll be out team roping today for Father’s Day, as he always does. So proud to call this trouble maker my dad!

melmpf

They Don’t Know

This song speaks so deep to my heart and my soul. Cannot explain the intense feeling in my chest when I listen to this song. Pride of where and whom I come from. The attachment I feel to the ground I grew up on. The feel of the soil in my hands. When in a sentimental mood the words can bring tears to my eyes. I swear it’s in my blood, has to be in the DNA.

First Love

Think back and remember that first true love.  I’m not talking about a school yard crush in the second grade, that first boyfriend in high school.  That first person in your life you can recall being totally and completely in love with, that person you looked up to and thought they could do no wrong and was the best thing since sliced bread.

My first love would have been 78 when I was born, Elza (pronounced ElZ).  Recall thinking of him as my boyfriend for as far back as I can remember.  Years ago I found that he was a friend of the grandfather I never knew, wonder if he had something to do with my love for Elza.  I am a firm believer in such things.

Elza pry didn’t stand quite five foot tall, he almost always wore the ol’ farmer blue and white striped overalls and his old cowboy hat or brown ear flapper hat.  When not in his farm clothes he would be dressed to the nines, always a suit, so handsome in his suit. 

As far back as I can remember Elza and his wife lived in town, upon retired they built a house in town and left the farming operation to their sons.  Elza never really retired, well not until shortly before his death at age 99 when the family moved him to a local nursing home.  One could set a clock by Elza, he had to drive past our farm to get to his farm…he’d toodle past in the morning and again just before noon on his drive home for dinner and again after dinner until quitting time when he’d toodle past again.  The worse thing for a new driver was to come upon Elza, don’t think he ever drove more than 35 mph and in the hills it was tough to pass him.  

Elza was a roadside farmer, as my grandfather was and I’ve found that I have become over the years.  Often when he’d be out working or just riding the horses he’d pull in for a visit.  He didn’t have much to say, but when he talked it was always something to hear. The stories he could tell!

My most fond memories are of sitting in the coffee shop in our Hill Town will the man. He carried a pocket watch with a well worn leather strap in the upper front pocket of his overalls.  The best thing in the world was the occasion when he’d pull that watch out and say to come to him and he’d put that watch up to my ear and let me listen to it tick.  Yes, should a simple thing, but a wonderful memory none the less. 

When I was in junior high we went on a 10 mile charity horse ride to the stockyards.  Right along with the rest of us was sweet ol’ Elza riding Desperado.  We were all sunburnt and roasting, didn’t seem to phase him a bit.  He was given an award for being the oldest person on the ride, of no importance to him. 

My absolute best memory of Elza comes with a tear, one that brought tears that had to be hidden the day it happened.  He had slowed down considerably and really shouldn’t have been driving anymore, his memory was starting to go.  We were home visiting from Nebraska, outside at mom and dad’s and Elza pulled in.  The Girl was just a little thing, maybe two.  Elza called The Girl over to him, told her to come over, pulled that watch out of his pocket and held it up to her ear.  Tears of joy and sadness.

My first true love! 

 

 

Tuesday 26. December 2017

As I’ve said so many time before, where does the time go?  Our Girl turned 23 today, just doesn’t seem possible. 

Girlie was born while we were living out in south central Nebraska.  Such a sweet little black haired, olive skinned beauty that was so little trouble, even during those teen years.  Not that there weren’t ugly times, there were, but they were few and far between. 

For many years Old Boy traveled a lot and for seven years it was mostly Girlie and me, and once Bubba came around she was a huge help while Old Boy was still on the road.  I recall a time or two I was so sick with a stomach bug that she stayed home from school to take care of her brother, we were in northern South Dakota without family.  Always felt bad about that. 

Starting before age two Girlie started having problems with allergies, asthma and eczema.  Trips to allergy doctors, the emergency room…checking on her breathing throughout the night for years until at the age of six she told me to leave her alone while asleep.  Years of daily maintenance medicines that in high school I’d have to force her to take because she was so tired of taking medicine everyday.  Thankfully she has gotten much better with age and doesn’t need to much medicine and has fewer attacks. 

There were years of summer ball…tball and softball practices and running with girls to games all over the area.  Volleyball in junior and high school.  Years and years of dance lessons, recitals and competitions.  Years that seemed to last forever but I miss so much.

There were the bunions and foot surgery in 8th grade.  The doctor swore it was the cowboy boots she lived in and yet she continued wearing everyday. 

There was the constant revolving door of boys.  The fights with friends who liked the same boys.  Many friendships were lost during those years.  Early on Girlie developed the mindset of…screw me over once and I’m not giving you the chance to do it again.  So much like her dad. 

Loved it when the girls went through the several year phase of my being the one to have to curl their hair for any and all activities.  Also the phase of having to dye their hair dark brown during the winter months and lighter during the warm weather months. 

There was the rodeo phase of team roping and break away roping that fell by the wayside when she went away to college.  Can’t forget the years of 4H and having to make her do her fair projects each year. 

The hardest time of all was when, at the age of 16, she blacked out while driving the gravel across the section.  The guardian angels were with her that day, telling her not to wear her seat belt as she’d always done.  The SUV rolled and spun on it’s nose, throwing her out the sunroof…authorities believe she very well may have not survived had she been belted in. 

Found by our bus driver, life flighted to the city, one night in ICU, six nights in the hospital.  Fractured sternum and shoulder, partially deflated lung, three fractured vertebrae.  Weeks of using a walker to get around.  So blessed she only lost 1 1/2″ in height (the three vertebrae are flat like pancakes) and a large scar on her back from where the skin broke on impact. 

Graduating in 2014, she went back to Nebraska for ag college and blossomed.  One week before graduation she was hired at a bank, has been there a little over a year and earned a promotion 11 months in.  She and her longtime boyfriend have two dogs and she helps him on the  family ranch as needed on weekends. 

So proud of the woman she’s become.  A legion and auxiliary member of a community she’s still new to.  Such a hard worker, helper and giver…she continues to grow! 

Just wish I knew were those 23 years went….

Peace!