Friday, October 23, 2009

I'm Not The Only Torture Victim

We branded calves at our place today. Poor things never know what they're in for but their torture only lasts a few minutes at most. 3 vaccinations, a new ear tag, a burned hip and if they are boys, they lose their manhood so to speak. My job was the usual: paper work, load RFID tags into the piercing guns, help with mixing vaccinations, provide treats and beverages, and cook lunch. Everything went well.

The Prairie Kid "helped" push calves up

Burn, baby, burn

Manhood eliminated

Happy Helper

A little ear piercing

"Mama! Where are you? Ouch, ouch, ouch"

Now its off to town to watch The Prairie Kid's hero play some football! Go Broncs!


We're busy processing cattle this week. I like to spoil all of the cowboys with goodies and meals. Yesterday I spoiled them with cinnamon rolls and even got to sneak a few to my Bible study gals. I haven't made cinnamon rolls in a long time; it is my dad's recipe that I grew up with.

I did not get to taste the cinnamon rolls. Assembling cinnamon rolls, smelling cinnamon rolls baking in your home, and removing fresh baked cinnamon rolls from the oven and not getting to taste them is torture. Sheer torture. I seriously told some friends that I would have rather been punched in the face than have to resist tasting those sweet, yummy buns of goodness. I didn't cheat though.

Object of torture.

Okay, now that you want to cry for me I have to fess up that it wasn't cheating to get to eat a little of the caramel. Here was my "reward"

I also made a batch of white chocolate coconut oatmeal cookies this week. Since I cannot have those either I did make myself some gluten-free carob cookies. They looked beautiful, stayed soft, and well, they tasted...tasted like something other than a real cookie. They must be an acquired taste. But I can't complain, right? Because I got to eat a cookie. At least a fake cookie.
I also made a batch of rice krispie squares and a batch of chocolate chip M&M cookie bars. Yep, couldn't touch those either. Maybe all of this torture is just to help me appreciate treats in a new way. Sure, its all a lesson in appreciation.

No it's not. It is torture. Sheer torture. Now if you'll please excuse me, I'm going to have a cup of rice milk.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

The Little Things

I am learning in my life right now about the little things again. They are precious and we can rejoice in them. I thanked God yesterday for filling me spiritually so that I can fully appreciate the physical blessings He gives. Here is a little list of the little things that I feel are great blessings these days (and under the circumstances, yes, most are food related):

- Eggnog. One of my favorites this time of year but I didn't think I was going to get to have any due to my dietary restrictions. Now that I get to have dairy again, at the store on Monday when I saw it I grabbed a carton, read the ingredients and rejoiced! I can have eggnog!

- Corn tortilla chips.

- Almond butter.

- Sleep. I have had two good nights in a row. When you haven't slept well for months this is a huge blessing.

- Gluten-free carob cookies.

- Texting.

- New socks.

- Shark Tank. What a great way to unwind with the Hubby on a Tuesday evening.

Even though I've had the joy of many little things, there are big things too. I cannot tell you how much it means to me that God has provided an incredible support system of people around me. The elders at church have blessed me with their prayers, thoughts, and even one of them is giving me a couple month break from teaching children's church by covering the spot for me. My friends have been checking in with me and I know that I can call them any time if I need them. My family. Oh, you people have blessed me. The flowers are beautiful! Thanks for the phone calls and emails. And guess what? My wonderful mom has decided that she needs to be with her daughter for a few days, even though I am heading to her place for Thanksgiving! She is coming on Halloween for 3 days! Yay!

There are several verses in the Bible that talk about suffering, finding joy, etc. I am thankful for them and embracing them in my spirit:

James 1:2 tells us "Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trial of many kinds."

Philippians 4:6 says "Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God."

1 Thessalonians 5:16-18: "Be joyful always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus."

2 Corinthians 4:16-18 "Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal."

Lord, thank you. Thank you for the big things, the little things, and most of all, thank you for You.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Test Time

I didn't realize it had been so long since I posted. I have had a rough couple of weeks. This last week was especially difficult.

I had some relapse in my health. Not what this cookie was hoping for, of course. I ended up visiting a new doctor of naturopath locally since my practitioner lives 5 1/2 hours away. Last time I saw him we agreed that it would be good to pull someone local into the picture. I really like the lady I saw although her methods are much different and I am not quite as sure about them as my other practitioner. However, I need a local practitioner and she is more than acceptable. She is a knowledgeable lady and very much wants to see me get through this.

The first protocol with her was to treat both parasitical and bacterial infections as well as try to balance my pH. I have been very acidic (typically caused by infections). After 2 weeks we didn't see any improvement...actually, I had a relapse with some symptoms.

I went back to see her and got some bad news. It is showing quite strongly (you aren't suppose to use the word "diagnosed" with ND's) that I have a fairly severe, chronic condition in my bladder due to the acidity of my body. We started a whole new protocol, including drastic dietary restrictions. I mean drastic. I started another blog just to help me get through these major changes in my life...a therapy and release. I didn't want this blog to become that site where I vented and shared about all of this so I decided to just dedicate another to the issues.

A few days into that protocol I was having severe kidney pain . So, I had to see the ND again and she's suspicious of kidney infection...again. Because of the kidney pain (which was brought on by calcium in the protocol that my kidneys could not handle) I am having to start all over, and very slowly, with remedies. One remedy every four days at a time to see how my body reacts.

As tired and frustrated as I have been at times this week, as much pain as I have had to endure (some was as intense as parts of labor) and as difficult as detox was (detoxing from all of these foods at once, especially coffee, was horrid. Horrid.), I have not lost hope. I still believe that I will come through this healed. I don't know when, I don't know how, I don't know why, but I just believe. I felt like God was telling me that He is allowing this for some necessary training for me. I am thankful that I have a trustworthy God that loves me more than I can even fathom.

And I have had tremendous support this week. My family, friends and church family have sure helped me through this. Thanks to each and every one of you.

So, that is what is happening in the life of The Prairie Mama. Not good news but hey, it could be worse. I haven't let this stop me from life either. I have been able to remain functional and keeping busy right now helps pass the time. On a good note I got dairy back! I was taken off of dairy as well as at least 2/3 of other foods last week. Getting dairy back is a real blessing. Ahhh, to have real milk and cheese again. And even a little ice cream. Smile.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Super Looper

The Prairie Kid is watching a new movie today called "Spirit: Stallion of the Cimmaron." It is all about horses and The Prairie Kid has been participating along the way. Here are some pictures:

Every Sunday on our way to town for church we pass a roping arena and lots of rigs are pulling in to rope for the day. Inevitably The Prairie Daddy says, "there's the Super Loopers." (If you're not familiar, there is a "loop" in a lariat and that is what you throw over the animals head or feet to rope it. Get it?)


We took a Power Trip to Iowa this weekend with my in-laws to celebrate Aunt Bernice's 80th birthday. This is not to be confused with a "power nap" because it does not rejuvenate or provide rest. This is what it looks like in a nutshell:

Day 1: Drive all day long across Wyoming and South Dakota. Stop only long enough to potty and refuel. Eat while on the road. Pull in to Mitchell, SD and sleep.
Day 2: Leave first thing in the morning and drive across the rest of South Dakota and most of southern Minnesota. Stop for lunch in Spring Valley, MN and then continue to the final destination...Waukon, Iowa.
Relax for a very short time in motel, load back in the car, attend a family function saying hello to hoards of wonderful extended family members that you haven't see for too long of time.
Sleep a bit.
Day 3: Pack as much family time into the day as possible. Go to bed really late and sleep a bit.
Day 4: Get up early, head to a family member's house for breakfast, say goodbye to the hoards of people, load up, drive back to Minnesota, drive back to South Dakota, drive almost all the way across South Dakota. Only stop long enough to potty, refuel, and continue to eat on the road.
Pull in to Rapid City, SD, take 5-10 minutes to regroup at the motel, load back up in the car and eat dinner with a very tired crew.
Sleep a bit.
Day 5: Get up, load up in the car, drive back to Wyoming, eat lunch in Buffalo, WY, drive over the Big Horn mountains, stop to potty at Ten Sleep, say goodbye to the part of the family driving another route, head home, and completely and totally crash.

In total:
5 days
36 hours of driving
2250 miles
3 motels
5 adults, 1 4 year old
2 white Suburbans

That is a Power Trip; my 3rd Iowa Power Trip since I married The Prairie Daddy. The Prairie Kid has gone on all 3 of these Power Trips too. He is a true trooper.

Here is a math riddle for you:

Aunt Bernice had 8 kids. Each of those 8 kids got married. Each of these married couples had an average of 3 kids a piece. Many of those kids got married and had kids. How many people are in this family?


Thankfully they are a wonderful hoard of people! I love these folks! They are genuine, kind, down-to-earth people. I am blessed to call them family. It might take me 3 hours to figure out "who's who" and tease that they're the only family I know that needs name tags and a children's program director at a birthday party, but they are awesome! I just wish we had spent more time there with them.

I didn't take many pictures this trip but I have a few to share:

The Awesome Trooper

Windmills in Minnesota
Family Children's Program...aka "Red Rover"
The Prairie Kid checking out all of his cousins and deciding whether or not to join in

Hmmm...decisions, decisions.

When Red Rover switched to Hide 'N Seek he was sold
And then he REALLY loved the girls toys
Aunt Bernice and her kids (she is the one in aqua)
Dad and his sister

And that my friends is an Iowa Power Trip. I might not want to see the inside of my car again for weeks to come but the laundry is almost done, the snacks are put away, and the recovery process continues.
I did make The Prairie Daddy promise me that next time we will stay an extra day or two and actually see some of the fun things to see around there. : )
Happy Birthday, Aunt Bernice!