Sunday, October 12, 2008

Potty Plumbing Problems

It all began this afternoon when it was discoverred that a little blue hairbrush was flushed down the toilet. Everyone tried their hardest to reach the brush in the depths of the potty. Here the manly men stand with freshly sanitized hands and arms. The brush was finally retrieved, however, being that nothing is simple around here, there is currently a disabled toilet in our house until later notice! We plan ahead to take the trek down to the second bathroom in the old marketplace.

More California Family Bliss!

Sandy and her three week old grandbaby Charlotte Fleur! Niece Carli and Sister-in-law Michelle - Aren't they just beautiful?!

Dave, Her Royal Higness and Michelle
Her Royal Highness and her cousins Abby, Kayli, Jaimie and Charlotte

It was so wonderful to spend time with family!!

...That's What a Hamburger's all about!

Burger Perfection! What more can be said?!?! Her Royal Higness is speechless after devouring burger and fries.
Tara's Alyssa enjoys her pink lemonade!

The Memorial Service, Shasta Lake, CA

Aunt Dianne and Aunt KathyCousin Mary - she lives in Tahoe and still Skis!
Some of the Great Grandchildren
Her sleepy Royal Highness
Way cute cousin crew

Her Royal Highness, Me, Kathy Anne and Grammie Anne

Her Royal Highness with her Nana

Cousins Annie, Barbara and Aunt Vicki (their good sides!)
Cousins Tom, Tommy John, Annie, Dudley, Barbara, Me and Ashlee
Nieces Noelle, Brianna and my Dad

A special salute!

My Grandpa

John Charles Taylor April 22 1921 - October 1, 2008 Photo by Tara
Hat Creek, CA Summer 2008

For Some Must Push and Some Must Pull-ey

Who would have thought a simple pulley could provide so much entertainment! Human Resources and the Attorney found this pulley in the packing shed. Between Taffy's tie down cable and Her Royal Higness's swing, this forgotten pulley has gotten more hours of use in comparison to what it was probably orginally intended for. It first began as the Kitty Zip-line. After making a few adjustments, the crew tried to gather up the kitty's. I looked out the windows to see a streak of white, a flash of orange, and black was apparently long gone! Since cooperation was not likely with the feline subjects, The Attorney and Human Resources donated themselves to the cause. They are still trying to work out small problems, for example, how to get the pulley to carry them to the end of the cable instead of stopping in the middle of the cable....

Stop!! Thief!!

We couldn't figure out where the corn cobs all over the front lawn were coming from. Then two weeks ago the Apple Farmer's Dad happened to spy Taffy trotting across the highway towards the front yard. She had been in the neighbor's sweet corn patch and in her mouth was an ear of beautiful sweet corn. The corn stalk it was attached to was dragging behind her!

Woolly Bear Caterpillar

Familiar since Colonial times as the "Woolly Bear," the caterpillar is often seen crossing roads and paths on warm days in late fall. According to superstition, the amount of black in the caterpillar's bristle coating forecasts the severity of the coming winter.

Our 15.7 Ounce Honeycrisp

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

New Harvest Trends

Not only did we manage apple harvest yesterday, but we managed a bit of walnut harvest. We also got more than we bargained for! I like to call moments like these, Missouri Moments, because they are just so incredible.

Brother and Sister Miller came out and Brother Miller demonstrated how to harvest black walnuts. He shimmied right up the tree and started jumping around in the branches. Down came the nuts! If only apples could be harvested this easily! (Isn't he just amazing!?!)
And down came the tent caterpillars!
From a distance it looked like the Apple Farmer was holding up an intricate seed pod - there are a lot of intricate seed pods in Missouri, too. I turned around and wasn't paying much attention to what he was holding. He came up behind me and told me to check it out. I turned around and right in the front of my nose was this! If I was 10 years older than I am now, I would have had a heart attack that would have killed me. But instead, my heart tried to jump up my throat, along with my lunch. Being that I am quiet youthful at my advancing age and stage, I managed to control these faculties and keep all things where they were meant to stay.

The Courage of the Fearless Crew

Human Resources and the Attorney ran out to the packing shed yesterday morning, and on their way out they found this:

They checked with the neighbors who were already setting up the apple process in the packing shed. They said the kitten didn't belong to any of their barns. Sometimes one farmer's barn cat may set up residence at another farmer's barn. It's happened before at our farm - so the two boys checked with everyone first before they came running into the house declaring their mission of mercy to save the poor little abandoned furball. I think the Attorney may have even mentioned something about a business tax write off.... my memory is a little fuzzy on this - it all happened so quickly! Next think I knew, it had food, water and a name! Our big orange tabby, Skipper, needed a 'little buddy,' so meet Gilligan! Now, too bad we aren't all marooned an a deserted island!

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Wet Weather Brings About Webbed Feet!

Last week turned out to be a pretty grueling week in the apple business portion of our lives. Yesterday, however, a little visitor served as a great reminder to be grateful for the little things that come our way. In this case, a 'little' green frog was what it took to remind me to not let an abundance of apples get in the way of enjoying motherhood and the simple curiosity of my children!

The Attorney "You can't argue with a Frog!"
Tailgate Safety meeting: Unfortunately, the Safety Program does not include any procedures for slimey green things that hop around.
The President: "Buy a bushel of apples and get a genuine Green Frog free!"
Her Royal Highness -"What if I kissed it.....?"

Each Life That Touches Ours for Good

As members of our branch, we have the pure joy of associating with some very dear couple missionaries who serve an 18 month mission at a nearby church history site. This past Sunday we bade farewell to 5 of the 11-12 couples who completed their missions. Unfortunately I was unable to take pictures of all of these wonderful couples, but I was able to take these pictures. This is Her Royal Highness, with Elder and Sister Christensen. These couples arrived just a couple weeks prior to Her Majesty's birth. Elder Christensen had a way with Royalty and was often found at the end of a meeting block with a sweet little pink thing curled up on his chest, sound asleep. Sister Christensen is such an inspiration and had a very quiet and gentle way in her relations with others! I really miss these wonderful people!

Now here is another wonderful couple! This is Elder and Sister Peterson. Sister Peterson just glows! Everywhere she goes she scatters sunshine. A sister in our branch once talked about 'Motherhood Heroes,' and Sister Peterson is one of mine! Never a negative word escapes her lips. Sister Peterson is also an amazing organist and her very last Sunday playing Postlude music, she played two of my favorite pieces - Jesu, Joy of Man's Desiring, and From thou Font of Every Blessing! I like to think she did it just for me!

Elder and Sister Rucker are so dynamic! Sister Rucker was always so encouraging and sweet! She is also one who goes the extra mile in her service to the church and in her family. I had the privilege of receiving some beautifully colored and laminated stories and games for FHE and church - I will treasure these forever!

Our closing hymn last Sunday was, "God be With you Till We Meet Again." I don't think there was a dry eye in the chapel when we finished. Another hymn that reflects what is in my heart is called, "Each Life That Touches Ours for Good."

Each life that touches ours for good

Reflects thine own great mercy, Lord;

Thou sendest blessings from above

Thru words and deeds of those who love.

What greater gift dost thou bestow,

What greater goodnes can we know

Than Christ-like Friends, whose gentle ways

Strengthen our faith, enrich our days.

When such a friend from us departs,

We hold forever in our hearts

A sweet and hallowed memory,

Bringing us nearer, Lord, to thee.

For worthy friends whose lives proclaim

Devotion to the Savior's name,

Who bless our days with peace and love,

We praise they goodness, Lord above.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Crazy Men Drivers!

Its the Apple Farmer! It looks like he is posing cooperatively for a picture, but he is really driving backwards (he is also not watching where he is going - so I can say that we are really thankful for wide open spaces here on the farm)!
This is our pug. It has given us many interesting challenges this season - and we are only 2 weeks into our season! It doesn't like to start. In this picture, though, it is actually running! Yes, the Apple Farmer is driving with no hands. Can you find 19 bushels of apples? Speaking of The Apple Farmer's driving skills, the Attorney has some interesting driving skills of his own. I kept telling him he was just not old enough to drive the pug, but he was certain that since Human Resources could drive it, he could. Finally I gave in and gave him a driving lesson. All was going pretty well, until our second apple pick-up. The Attorney landed us in two apple trees. We were lucky that we still had our eyeballs. The trees are much lighter now, since the Attorney lightened their loads. Shaken up, I sat in awe as The Attorney plead his case on why he is still a perfectly good driver! Fortunately for him, he is still allowed to drive the Golf Cart.

Friday, September 5, 2008

The Princess and the Pee

Guess what happened at our house today!

Autumn Bounty!

Went to the produce auction today. The apples didn't do great but they did a lot better. This is some beautiful Indian corn that I won at auction, and I also won a bunch of great pumpkins! It was loads of fun decorating!
Here are some of our apples on display. I'm still working on filling up the produce tables. Can you see some of the great pumpkins and gourds up above the tables?

This is a beautiful chest of drawers made by one of our Amish neighbors. It is an amazing piece of furniture, standing maybe 18 inches tall. The chest on the left of the bench is also his. I'm hoping we can sell a bunch of these for him.

It's the Attorney and he is sitting next to his favorite pumpkin!! He is growing so fast!

The Big Long Straw

Hmmm, I wonder why the Apple Farmer has such a loooooong straw. I wonder why Brother Miller is smiling so big.

Monday, September 1, 2008

Once Upon an Apple

Here is a fun apple story that one of the neighbors copied down from their Amish newsletter and gave to me. Its really cute!

Granny Smith had a son Jonathan who was a Northern Spy. Down on Wolf River lived McIntosh whose maiden Blush was a Cortland Jonathan. She thought of him as a Jonalicious with pockets full of Jon-a-Gold. An early Transparent wedding was performed with him wearing a Mutsa. She was a Rome Beauty, wearing a Winesap, eating a Banana and he thought she was Honey Crisp. They had three appleys name Gala, Paula Red and Fuji.

After 25 Red and Yellow Delicious years they put em all in a jar and had apple butter and bean soup. And lived Apple-y ever after.

Sunday, August 31, 2008


Saturday morning I called in to work sick (tee hee) and locked myself in the house so I could clean in peace. I don't think the 'higher-ups' suspected that I was really playing hookie from work. I'm pretty clever that way. Her Royal Highness was a little suspicious and stayed behind. I coughed a couple of times to make sure I would appear legitimately ill.

After washing dishes, I swept the kitchen floor. After sweeping up the pile (what a mess!! I need to complain to my union rep about the working conditions I have to deal with) I turned around and guess where I found 'Her Majesty?'

Attorney Receives Distinguished Honors

The Attorney received several awards prior to the Arrow of Light ceremony. Along with arrow points, he received several belt loops and the Leave No Trace and Conservation awards. (The Apple Farmer is presenting the awards).

Human Resources Receives Award

Human Resources received his Arrow of Light Saturday night. He worked hard for this and was so excited! He received his award along with his associate Angus. Following the Arrow of Light ceremony, an Eagle Court of Honor was held for Taylor (center), Angus' brother. Taylor presented both boys their scouting neckerchiefs and Boy Scout books as they crossed the bridge from Cub Scouts to Boy Scouts. Human Resources is very anxious to begin his journey to obtain his Eagle. (Neckercheifs are undone because they were used as blind folds while their mother's led them on the 'path' of cub scouting).

Friday's Produce Auction

Friday's produce auction was a flop. But I did manage to get this fun picture of the crew.
I think this would be considered an executive meeting. I was not privy to the information discussed as they went into closed session just as soon as they sat down. My guess is they discussed personel issues such as lack of kitchen staff- for some crazy reason they think they have more important things to be doing than filling in the vacant positions in the kitchen. There is also the nagging paper work that us farmers manage to create for them. The paperwork was sky high with mathmatics and writing and research. The Attorney and the President both feel that there are better things they could be spending their valuable time doing... like arguing.. Human Resources didn't seem to mind too terribly. I hope their meeting was productive!