Tag Archive: God

Expect The Unexpected

“No  matter what, expect the unexpected.  And whenever possible, be the unexpected.”  quoted Lynda Barry.  Many things were unexpected this year. Winter was very mild here this year.  It was guaranteed to be a harsh winter according to the persimmon seed  and the farmer’s almanac.  Well, it WAS a harsh winter in other areas of the country, but not really here.  Some areas of Kansas had heavy snow, but here in Udall, it was just plain cold! It was unexpected.

Unexpected was my fruit trees coming out before the winter had passed.  Yes, it occurred after the temperatures soared to the 80’s in the middle of winter. The winter wheat came out of its dormancy.  The winter was being temperamental. The fear of a lack of fruit this year had come upon us last night with a promise of a freeze.  The temperature was to drop to below freezing with my plum, nectarine and peach trees in bloom.  For those who can and jam, this is disconcerting, but I think of those whose lifestyle is their orchard, and my heart breaks.  This will have to be a wait and see because it will be a repeat tonight.

I tried to do what I could and get out there before the heavier frost and do what seems unnatural and unexpected to many who don’t have fruit trees.  I watered the ground, and froze it onto my tree during the wee hours of the morning with the hose.  My trees are too tall for bags, too few to have burn barrels or buy a frost buster. I thought about burn barrels and doing the “Walk in the Clouds” movie scene and do  butterfly wings and blow the heat to my trees.

If you have never watched the movie, it is beautiful on vineyards and set in post-WWII.  Of course,it is a romance.  But I would not look so lovely.  Picture me in a heavy-set of jeans, clumpy boots, a down coat and sheets used for wings.  Just lovely  🙂

We have no idea what life is going to throw our way.  Sometimes I  hate the unexpected.


Flowering peach tree

Flowering peach blossoms


The Unexpected.  It happens with everyone. We should expect the unexpected.  They can come in forms of happiness or in great sorrow.  The diagnosis of cancer, the loss of  a loved one, the loss of a job, house, health.  We do not set out to have these sorrows in our lives.  A dear friend recently lost her son to an aggressive, quick and uncommon cancer and then before her son passed into glory, her husband was diagnosed with cancer.  This past week he had surgery and it has spread beyond it original area and they are making hard decisions on the future.  We may ask why?  Or God why?  Jesus asked why of his Father, but his attitude was the difference.

Not that I haven’t cried out in anger, screaming at times in my room, WHY? We all have our unexpected heartache.  Even as I write this, it struck me at this instant, I am exactly one year anniversary of losing my job as a labor and delivery nurse. It was unexpected and swift.  So much so I sat in a chair for three days doing nothing but staring, crying, not even bothering to change my clothes from the pajamas I was in. Then for 2 months I was in a fog. The unexpected of not being able to find another job at a hospital, but not wanting to return to the 27 years of night shifts in the high risk infants and children in home care and 32 years of being a good nurse seemingly down the drain.  But I needed a job and for a brief time I did return to nights to supply income because there are bills to pay and two children in college.

Until another unexpected happened. A brief thought came to mind, a phone call and a job of an orchestra assistant and accompanist at a school and for students at a nearby college.  Not what I had in mind, but it was a job and very unexpected role.  I am from the “dark side” my orchestra director stated because I played the french horn.  I know nothing of strings but willing to make it a go, because I do know how to play the piano and music.

Then comes the next unexpected. Hmmm,  I am liking it more than I thought, although I miss nursing terribly. I love kids in general.  There is the challenge of winning over students who loved their former orchestra assistant.   Some made it very clear……  One thing with me and a challenge, I like challenges and I don’t give up easily.  So….. here comes the food.  Not any food, but gourmet cupcakes fashioned to make me the sugar pimp to these kids.  Once a month, for those birthdays who come that month, I have them sign up and put their favorite cake and icing.  Then I bring the top three flavors of unfrosted cupcakes and frost them there with a personal touch.   Unexpected was an anonymous note from a student at Christmas time who told me I was her favorite teacher in school (as well as the orchestra director) and they were glad I was there.  It was a happy tears unexpected for me.

Get your coffee on.  Latte icing on a cupcake

Get your coffee on. Latte icing on a cupcake

Red Velvet cupcake

Red Velvet cupcake

Candy in a cupcake

Candy in a cupcake









Unexpected was abnormal blood work in November  2015 and mild TIA  (transient ischemic attack) or “so we really don’t know” the doctor mentioned, which left my entire left side weak and 24 hours in the hospital under observation.  Unexpected was the gathering of family to the bedside and on the phone and repairing of relationships and affirmations of love.  There is still recovery on the TIA and it throws another unexpected on the vocal cord and my singing. The blood work is still in its infancy testing, along with infusions and a wait and see attitude. I become frustrated when I have been a goer and doer and after two hours I am exhausted for the day.  I smile, act like I have strength, plow through the day and wait until I get home to crash.  It has been a game changer not to go full steam all the time.   Yet through it all I see hope.  “Hope doesn’t announce that life is safe, therefore, we will be; instead, it whispers that Christ is our safety in the midst of harsh reality.” Patsy Clairmont, Living Lively in the Valley.  My reality is not as harsh as others. God is still in control and as difficult as it may seem throughout the years in my eyes, God has been good.  I try to see the positive on all this and God is still putting on pressure for this lump of coal to become a diamond.  As much as I want to plan my life, life has a way of throwing unexpected things my way to show I am not in control, but HE is.  God gives me the unexpected good to show He loves me and He allows me the unexpected “bad” to show how much more He loves me and will carry me through when I allow Him. Sometimes He graciously and gently holds and carries me along even when I am kicking and screaming .

Do I question him?  Why yes, yes I do.  I have to keep in check not to get bitter or angry or give up.  My unexpected is not your unexpected and comparisons do not belong to us.  I think what messes most with our heart, mind and emotions is we have a picture of what our life should be and it throws us off when it doesn’t go our way or what we think should be normal.  “Normal is just a setting on the dryer” said Patsy Clairmont.   She forgot to mention the dryer tumbles….

I think I will go outside and enjoy the warmth of the sunshine, the flowers on my fruit trees while they last.  If I expect nothing,  I might just be surprised later in the season to find  unexpected fruit and if not….there is always next year.


New calves

What is this new little thing in the Field?

What is this new little thing in the Field?

New calves.  They are so sweet, and even sweeter when it is warm when they are born.  In the last few years we have been regular in having our calves in the fall.  Twin bulls in September, which is unusual.   And they were so cute!  It is always interesting to see what they look like especially if  both parents are black Angus and we have a red Angus heifer born.  She is mine, and her name is Ginger. (She is my reward for taking care of the cattle during my husband’s knee replacement.  But personally I know it is because she is red, not black.  It doesn’t fit with his black scheme of things) This is where my college science regarding recessive genes come in.  Horns or no horns?  Hold it, your parents didn’t have horns, how come you are growing buds?  Sigh…….

Bossy checking baby out to see if all is there

Bossy checking baby out to see if all is there

We have a caramel coloured bull, oops, now steer. This occurs very quickly to keep from having to do it when older, which is not so lovely, and trust me, my husband’s first time done, with a multi-use sharpened Swiss Army knife gave me the willies as a nurse.  “Are you sure I can’t run home and get the surgical knife, it would be a lot easier.”  Nope.  Poor steer couldn’t walk straight for many a day.  Learned the lesson to get them while they are young.  He is doing well now.  He is the one who JD couldn’t dehorn and do so much psychological damage in one day to the poor baby.  His twin brother was spared the trauma by being sold before he was neutered and dehorned. Our new little bull’s mother is a Dairy mixture and his father was an Angus.His name is Spunky because within 10 minutes he was trying to get up and do a lil kick in the process.  He still turned out just as cute as a bug in a rug.  His sister is the white face in the photo above, but everyone has to be in the picture after the new one has arrived.

Our newbies are so sweet, but not in 27 degree weather.  Our momma, A/C (awesome cow) was preparing for her second calf, her first for us was D/C (darn cute) although she is a pro at having babies.  Yes, A/C D/C which was so conveniently decided by a contest on my facebook.  My friend Michelle decided the names after remembering the band had a band member named Angus.  This all should be conglomeration and coagulating as to why the names. Wind, cold and no sun shining makes for a cold and possible dangerous delivery.  Even with her cleaning, it was cold for a newborn.  I watched her for 2 hours while she labored and finally brought forth a beautiful dark calf.  Unknown sex but with a field cow you don’t just walk up and say, “can I peek at your baby’s bum?”

New bull and family all together here

New bull and family all together here

The challenge as with any calf, is to get to the calf, if need be in a dire circumstances, without getting ran over by a hormone challenged momma cow.  If you have their calf, they will not hurt you.  But when you put the calf down or let go of the baby, all is fair game.  Needless to say, I was charged at after JD put our new baby down in the hay. HEY, I didn’t pick up your baby and drag him here! You might have a little more gratefulness since it was my idea to put your baby here so he wouldn’t freeze, thank you very much.  But like most mommas, and she is no exception, they are very protective of her baby.  After a “feel” my husband determined that it was a “he” and at this rate, I hope we don’t use the same Rent-a-Bull we did before.  He has only given us males so far.  If the next two are males,  we may not want to use him if we would like to have a few more females in the herd.    But he is too cute even at this stage of the  game.  So begins the name game.

Warming up nicely

Warming up nicely

Hey, I am in the hay, not the hay to be eaten

Hey, I am in the hay, not the ha.y to be eaten

But in this weather, this woman has to be smarter than the elements.  The water barrel was frozen and I went to break the ice when one of the cows, Angelina, kept staring at me through the fence as if to say, “what are you going to do with this water here?” I was busy on birth watch.  I picked up the pitchfork and using the end of the pitchfork (not the pointy end) to break the ice in the water trough.  Very foolishly while I adjusted the pitchfork to lean farther, I felt a sharp prick to my face and very quickly felt what I thought was a salty tear, because I was mad at the ice not breaking, thus breaking into tears.  But sad to say the taste was a salty iron not just salt and gingerly touching my face and seeing blood, I grabbed a kleenex and headed back to the car. Examining myself in the mirror of the car, I found the pitchfork and I had a disagreement on its usage and I lost.  I had three marks on the face, one just missing my right eye.  Not smart.  Glad I have had my tetanus shot.  So much for helping the cattle, esp in heels and Sunday dress. Before you say anything, I didn’t want to miss this birth since I was always late on the others, plus I was in the car with the heater on, a blanket and my Texas ranger leather coat.

God watches over fools and children. Praise the Lord He was watching over me today.  My face hurts like crazy but I didn’t lose my eyesight, and He gave me the sight and delight of seeing new life come into this world.  It is lovely.  Ecclesiastes 3:11  He makes all things beautiful in its time.

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