Sunday, August 31, 2008

Weird - Wacky Holidays for August 31

Love Litigating Lawyers Day is an annual celebration scheduled for August 31.

I wanted to be a lawyer. Scott told me I should go to law school because I would be good at cross examination because I always look at every angle. True, but I'm not sure I have that in me. If I were a lawyer I'd want to work for a cause and make a difference.

I believe this holiday originated from those fun-loving folks over at They found a reason to celebrate every day of the year. And hey, why not? It's nice to find someone who has a sense of humor and celebrates life!

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Weird Wacky Holidays - August 30

It might not exactly be the dog days of summer, but Fido - or Fluffy - relax a bit, try some puppy yoga or kitty pilates in celebration of National Holistic Pet Day. Pet owners should consider trying holistic, natural treatments for their animals.

Since it is a holiday weekend, you might enjoy sitting around the campfire and toasting marshmallows before the chilly air of fall arrives. And why not? Today is National Toasted Marshmallow Day. But be careful! I remember at Girl Scout camp when I was about 8 years old, I was trying to slide the marshmallow off the stick and man oh man did that burn!

T minus 9 and counting - The Pelini Era

My bags are packed and I'm ready to go. Today is the dawn of the Bo Pelini era of Nebraska football. And I can't wait!

My prediction is Nebraska 54 - Western Michigan 28. The hubby says that WMU won't score 28 on our defense. Yes, he's also the man who decided to spend a little more $$ on the NU-ISU game last year and started his downward spiral into football predictions. :)

I'm hoping that throughout the season, fans realize that he's not GOD. He's a human being who shares his passion and vision for college football with young men from around the country. He's going to make mistakes in calls. The team will make mistakes on some plays. We'll win and we'll lose, but the bottom line is that we are learning and getting better! I just don't want fans to get down on him if something happens beyond his control.

Last year's negativity reached from Omaha to Sydney, Rulo to Harrison. Fans need a level head and then, good things will happen.

Friday, August 29, 2008

Weird and Wacky Holidays - August 29

Yes, I have to get back to writing about these interesting holidays.

August 29 is More Herbs, Less Salt Day. Hey, I'm all in flavor (nice pun) of using herbs instead of salt. And I usually do use more herbs than basic salt and pepper seasoning.

I have fresh cilantro and mint in my garden. Last year I had some oregano and it was wonderful when I made homemade spaghetti sauce. So delicious!

If you're not a herbologist, you can check out to look up a spice and find out helpful info, including the source, what it tastes like, the best use, and cooking uses.

Jersey will be a mama

My jersey calf gets AI'd today! I hope being pregnant and then becoming a mama doesn't make her a cranky cow!! :)

FYI - six others got AI'd today too. But I'm most excited about Jersey.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Politics and Premises

Normally, I wouldn't write about politics because it seems like people don't always show respect to another person's opinion, especially when it comes to politics.

I've been watching segments of the Democratic convention, and next week, I'll watch segments of the Republican convention. Am I undecided? Heck no, although last week I still didn't feel confident with the candidate I more than likely will vote for. I watch because I enjoy politics. I like the process. I like Hillary. And I agree with Barack Obama. On Tuesday night, Hillary Rodham Clinton rocked the house!

Yesterday, on a social networking platform I use, a woman wrote this post: "Hillary. Gotta love her.......NOT!"

I couldn't let it go. I responded that Senator Clinton is an intelligent, strong, powerful woman and a lot of people find that intimidating.

No response.

Maybe I intimidated her.
In the scheme of things, I think that premise of mine is spot on. Hillary is definitely intelligent. She has shown it in the work she chooses to do and the causes she supports. Hillary is strong. She has shown that trait in the strength of adversity. And Hillary is powerful. She definitely is powerful. She has shown that in situations, including the convention, and she will continue to showcase her power through her time as Senator and whatever else she elects to do.

To me, she represents the notion that a woman can - and will - be president. And I'm not sure who else is even close on the horizon to be at that spot. I would like to think that in my lifetime, a woman will lead the White House - and not as First Lady as the hostess with the mostess at some State dinner party.

I also think that on Tuesday evening, she showed that even in the face of adversity, sexism, and unfairness, she does possess a sense of humor. Her "to my sisterhood of the traveling pantsuits" comment made me laugh and even made me cry knowing that 18 million other people thought she was the best candidate.

But life isn't always fair. Sometimes people cast judgment based on prior events. Sometimes people aren't open minded. Sometimes people don't get that change is necessary. Sometimes people playdown someone's abilities because they are afraid of reality.

And sometimes, as I've learned through my life, the best person or team doesn't win.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Dairy production

Not sure what is going on with some of the dairy herd. OK, well, with 5 of them. Their milk production dropped to 10 pounds a day per cow. They usually produce 80 pounds or more daily.

We ran out of silage about a month ago and bought some from an area farmer. We had the silage tested by the lab and figured out the nutrition rate based on its composition. Still, their production has dropped - staggeringly - and we're not sure why. The vet came Monday and gave them a thorough once-over and cannot find anything physically wrong with them.

And don't tell me it's a mental thing. :)

I'm not sure what our next move will be, but we're going to have to find out what's ailing them - and quickly!

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Upgrades in the Dairy Barn

We installed a new tank in the dairy barn. The 65,000 gallon tank sits on a cement slab outside of the building. Part of the new addition is completed; the east and south walls and roof are finished.

The good thing about the new tank is that in case of inclement weather, we'll be safe if the milk truck from AMPI doesn't get here for a day or two. We can fill the big tank and if the weather is atrocious, then we can start filling the inside tank, also.

Costly little venture, but in the long run, it will pay for itself.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Positive Journaling Article

My article about the power of positive journaling - and my prescription for it - is now live at WOW! Women on Writing.

Fun side note to this story. I put out a call for experts on HARO , which is a FANTASTIC source for journalists and writers of all types. A PR rep from a reputable NY publishing house contacted me and sent a link to a book trailer for one of their authors. Well, I was sold just by her presence in the book trailer, but then, she talks about how her boyfriend found out about one of her discretions and he made a joke about it (because he's a stand-up comic). So, it cuts to a clip of him doing his bit. This comic was one of the 24 who were at the Great American Comedy Festival in Norfolk this summer, where I served as director of the Youth Comedy Camp. He did that joke in his show at the festival.

Anyway, small world. But, she is an amazing writer. Her PR rep sent both of her books to me, and I'm hoping to score another interview with her and dish about her books.

Go on, check it out. I know you want to. :)

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Olympic withdrawal

OK, I know it's only day four of competition of the Olympics, but it's approximately 2:30 p.m. CDT, and there aren't any Olympic competitions to watch.

I'm going through withdrawals. Oh, I can tell. I reach for the remote and hit the guide button and scan the NBC stations and affiliates we get on Dish Network: NBC, CNBC, USA. And as I scan each program to see what time an Olympic event begins, my body shakes as I realize I need to wait until this evening to watch more. Don't tell me to head over to MSNBC - my favorite channel - who is offering 4 AM to 4 PM coverage because we don't get it with this Dish package. No Oxygen or Telemundo, either. :(

But wait! What's this? Streaming live video on It might be a temporary solution to quench my need for a fix. I don't want to miss a minute of volleyball, beach volleyball, gymnastics, swimming, trapshooting, equestrian..... Well, you get the picture. I'm hooked. Even men's synchronized diving was fun to watch! Might have to watch a little Olympic badminton later.

I'm hooked. I'm addicted to the adrenaline rush of the athletes performing to the best of their abilities. Heck, I felt the tear trickle down my cheek when the men's swim 4 x 100 relay team beat out those darn Frenchmen who had to shoot off their mouths about "smashing Team U.S.A.". That was one of the best Olympic moments I remember viewing, and truth be told, I think when I was growing up, we watched the coverage with the same intensity.

And no, it's not Olympic envy. I enjoy sports and I like to participate, but would I want to be an Olympic athlete? Sure. Really? No. I'm competitive but I don't envision myself as someone who is competitive to that extreme. Except in speech competition. Is there an Olympic event for entertainment speaking? I might be able to win a gold medal. OK, I could definitely be standing on the podium.

Maybe that's the ticket. Make speech an Olympic-style event. We do that to an extent already, but speech could gain a world-wide audience. I'm sure people would tune in to watch extempers battle it out in the prep room.

But I digress. I will patiently wait until 7:00 to watch these wonderful athletes take the stage and work toward a team gold medal in women's gymnastics. I'll DVR the USA volleyball team if I can't stay awake that late. But since Michael Phelps will be swimming sometime during the 11:35p.m. - 1 a.m. time period, I'm going to have to force myself - not a problem - to stay awake and watch history being made.

And I think that is part of the allure of the games: we can view history and feel a part of it, even if we are separated by continents and oceans. It's like a cooperative venture, and our country's team depends on us to watch and support them. Even if it's from the comfort of our living room or queen-size bed in the dark of night.

Who have you said 'I'm sorry' to today?
Check it out.

I always think about a line from a song that says "Jesus would forgive, but a daddy don't forget."

So true.

Who have you said "I'm sorry" to today?

Sunday, August 3, 2008

County Fair time, 4-H projects, and the price of procrastination

So, the County Fair started on Thursday, which meant that the kids had to "go home" to finish projects that couldn't be finished here. I'm still trying to wrap my brain around the "we have to do them at home" as opposed to finishing them here, but after viewing some entries, the light turns on. I guess in the dark recesses of my mind, I knew the real reason, but I wanted to believe in goodness and innocence and truthfulness when it comes to 4-H projects. And again, I'm disappointed. Terribly disappointed.

Walking through the exhibit building, we look the photo projects that had to be finished. At home. Not here. We find photo #1 with the youngest kid's name attached to it. I look at it, and I know there is no way in Hades she took the picture because it was at a track meet on a school day and I know she was in school.

Picture #2 was supposedly taken by daughter #2. It shows daughter #3 running at the elementary field day. And again, there is no way in Hades she took the picture because she was sitting next to her father some 50 feet behind me. And want to know who took that photo? The mother. She was about ten feet farther down the line than I was when I snapped pictures of #3.

And then there's the picture taken by the one and only son. I'm not sure where he took the picture at. It looks like something photoshopped or "borrowed" from some other source. The reason I question the photo is because there aren't many wooded areas like that around the area. It's too perfect, if you know what I mean.

Then there's the gardening project. How can a judge award a purple ribbon to a container garden that still has the flower identifying sticker from the nursery? I guess if the only learning process is to water the plant and care for it, then ok, but if the point of the project is to raise something, nurture and care for it, this project miserably fails. I wouldn't even award it a white ribbon.

And daughter #3 told us she had all these cooking projects to finish. Ummm, we found one piece of angel food cake. No cookies. No decorated cakes. Angel food cake. And that's why she had to go home two days early? To cut a 1/2" slice of cake?

We're still searching for the sewing project. Obviously, there wasn't time to run to Wal-Mart, buy the item, rip off the tags, and pass it off as your own.

And that leads to the preparation of livestock for the show. Who should be cleaning these animals? Parents? No, it should be the participant. So that explains why we had to get the cow cleaned up. Yes, he said he took care of the three heifers before we got there. And that might be true. But based on watching he and sis #3 get the goats ready, I'm positive someone else did the cleanup duty.

So here's a note to consider: if you are in so many events in the livestock show that you don't have time to show and prepare all of them, perhaps you should consider not showing so many animals. Because if you can't handle getting them ready at fair, you probably haven't spent enough time with them to begin with. Do you really need to show 32 rabbits and two pens of chickens, along with 13 goats and four cows? Have you ever thought about cutting down and taking pride in what you're doing? It's better to do one thing and be great at it than to do fifty things and be mediocre at it.

Now, I'm all about 4-H. I see the benefits and opportunities that are available through the program. Heck, I was in 4-H for a number of years and I remember matting photos for the fair and finishing the basic sewing project in time for the fashion revue. But I completed the projects on my own. My parents never took control and finished my projects. If I was up late at night completing them, that was my problem, not theirs. They would be close if I needed minor assistance, but I would never flip through the photos my mom took and pass them off as my own.

And that is what makes me question the goals of 4-H now. I'm sure not every parent handles fair entries for their children; the group is a youth organization. It's supposed to help them learn. How can they learn right from wrong if they're told to cheat? It's impossible.

This makes me wonder if the price of procrastination is learning how to cheat. Does procrastination mean your parent finishes your project?

On the bright side, we did have the Grand Champion Dairy Cow. Woo hoo! This is the second year this particular cow has been crowned GC. The two Holstein heifers received top purple, and my Jersey got top blue. The judge said she was short. Hello! She's a Jersey. She's going to be shorter than a Holstein!