Saturday, June 27, 2015

Chicken Butchering...Again!

Lucky me, I got to butcher two times this summer!  Every year Dad and the neighbors, Mark and Patty, raise 150 chickens to eat and sell. Dad raises them in his chicken house until grown and  the actual butchering is done next door.  Mark and Patty have state of the art equipment. I missed the plucking part caring for mom, but as soon as I got her settled, I headed over. I asked what I could do to help and they put me at the butchering table, telling them I was pre-trained by my son Randy! I butchered one chicken and wanted to take pictures but smiling Mark said not until I'd butchered 30 chickens. I asked again in about 30 minutes and he still said no, laughing all the while. After over an hour of butchering I got my camera and he just smiled...I had finally earned the right to take pictures. I was there several hours until all 150 were butchered. We had a ball laughing and telling stories around the table.  Dad butchered two to my one, but I showed him how to peel apart the gizzard the proper way...right! This man was a professional chicken butcherer.  "These chickens are much smaller than ours," I said, and Dad told me the story of how he weighed the chickens, telling Mark they were ready to butcher and then realized the scale was off 2 lbs!     

When the chickens reach a certain age, they're let outside in the yard to roam during the day, coming back to the chicken house each night.  Smart chickens.  

Mike (red shirt) and Patty

Randy, Mark, Mark's son in law and Dad

Dad, Becky and Randy

Marcus, Dad, Becky, Randy, Mark and Mark's son in law....can't remember his name or the guy in the gray shirt!

Friday, June 26, 2015

A Special Day For Mom

Mom was gradually feeling stronger....two steps forward, one step back. Some days she felt more tired than others, being discouraged at times, but I encouraged her that each week she was still walking forward and getting stronger.  I'm so proud of her.  We made an appointment with a local beautician to have her hair done, knowing it would make her feel better. I of course, captured the day with pictures.  Beautiful! After her hair appointment we stopped by Stewarts for an ice cream and headed home where I introduced her to the art of selfies.  It was a blessed day. 

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Home Time

With mom home, we soon settled into a routine...home health services in the morning and naps for mom in the afternoon, being exhausted from all her therapy.  Often there were Dr appointments, visits with friends and in between work around the house and yard, meals to make, laundry, personal care for mom, etc...there was never a slow time. I started my morning with my daily walking, listening to my audio bible that I downloaded, getting God's word into my mind.   My favorite day of the week was Sunday, attending church at West Stephentown Baptist church with our friends Mike and Pam.  It was so good being in God's house with fellow believers, worshiping our Lord.  It renewed my spirit so!  I thanked the Lord every day for this time with the Littles. I can't begin to tell you what a joy and blessing it was to care for them... plus they had to put up with me.  We did just fine together! 

Kathy (PT) helping mom with her ambulating.

Jennifer (OT) working with mom's arm mobility

Morning nap for  mom with Tippy.  Tip was so happy to have mom home!

Afternoon nap time on her favorite quilt and new recliner.

Susan with Dad and Mom

West Stephentown Baptist church

This is one of my favorite pictures.  Before mom came home we brought a bed from downstairs to the living room. Everynight I would tuck her into bed, making sure the pillows were just so, praying with her and kissing her good night with an "I love you." ...and I do♥

Monday, June 22, 2015

Family Time

Below are pictures of our family time together in June. While mom was still at Evergreen, Dad and I went over to Perry (Scott's brother) and Darshan's house for a visit and had some awesome healthy tacos. Perry loves to work in his garden like dad, plus he's a skilled craftsman as you can see in the picture below...he made that red horse wagon. After dinner, we stopped by Tastee Treat where Michelyn was working and had dessert!  Randy (Scott's youngest brother) and Jennifer came over several times, making us dinner. One night Randy made a shrimp recipe...I felt like I was in a four star restaurant and it tasted as good as it looks. Thank you Chef Randy! To celebrate Father's Day we had the whole crew over for dinner, including Darshan's dad, cooking a large chicken.  It was a wonderful family day, gathered around the table, though Scott was very missed. Love you babe! Several evenings I was also able to go shopping with Darshan and my nieces. We had a blast and to be honest, it was a needed break. While shopping I bought my first pair of Dansko nursing shoes...basic black that will go with all my scrubs.  The shoes are very comfortable, but I feel like a tall giant when I wear them...5' 11"  baby!  The last picture is the bow I made for Michelyn for her July 4th race.  Talk about girly...I loved making it and she looked adorable. 

A special Father's day visit: Jamelle and Dad. 

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Yard Work With Dad

Dad and I both enjoy working in the yard and in my spare time you could find me mowing, weeding and clearing around the trees.  Dad has over 140 trees on his property...yes, I counted.  Many of them were overgrown with vines and shrubbery and when I mowed I was continually dodging branches. With Dad's permission, I began trimming the lower limbs so we could mow without getting hit and clearing around each tree. I lost count how many times I filled the back of Dad's truck with limbs and brush. I do know the neighbors had three big bonfires with the brush I added. Gradually the yard was looking so much better. I asked Randy to come over and saw several limbs that needed to be removed. Well, you know thing lead to another and soon Dad was having Randy saw all the dead limbs and trees down. Yep, more work. I picked up what I could and Scott helped when he arrived. By the end of our 6 weeks, the yard was cleared and easily mowable for Dad. It gives me a sense of satisfaction to look back on this big project and see a job completed well done. I told Dad as I left that he'd better not be letting my yard turn back into a jungle while I'm gone! He just smiled. I love you Dad.