Monday, April 20, 2015

Birthday Girl Talks Beef

The baby of the family had a birthday!   I'm not exactly sure where the time has went, but as people say, it goes fast. The youngest of the Hadrick 5 has entered into the final few years of the single digits. This year we held a Art Studio Party for her friends.  Miss R's favorite subject is art and unfortunately she doesn't get enough of it, so what better way to celebrate then to buy some canvas and let there be paint! 
The party started out with tacos and dinner conversation that consisted of meat.  Of course, what else would 7 & 8 year old girls want to talk about... Miss R was quick to point out that the meat we were eating came from the cows outside our window. That left a few of the girls with confused looks on their faces. 

One friend said, "How can you eat something you care for?"  Which is a common question for many people.  Miss R never missed a beat and quickly respond, "We care for them, but they also make good beef that helps us grow strong." 

Another friend suggested we quit talking about cattle at the dinner table. But, the girls had many questions and comments about eating meat and they just kept coming.  

The class had recently been to the veterinary office on a field trip and started to relive moments from that adventure.  The discussion about how to make a steer was probably my favorite and the point where My Cowboy and I started to laugh and had to turn our backs. Apparently Dr. B explained how to band the scrotum to the kids and then the bull becomes a steer. The girls all laughed and I thought this is certainly not the usual conversations these girls have at their dinner tables. All of them were Miss R's town friends. To my kids, these are normal conversations we have at the dinner table. 

But for one last comment, from Miss Grace (I can put her name because her mother will know it was her anyway) "Well your dad raises some good beef and I need another taco!" BTW all the girls ate their tacos. We went on to paint some really cool pictures and of course did cheers and played games. 

I always tell My Cowboy that we can never get away from talking cows at the dinner table. I guess even at our daughters birthday party, we talk cows.  Maybe it's the table...

Friday, April 10, 2015

Not All Protein Created Equal

We’re not a normal family for many reasons, but one that I often have to remind myself is that we eat beef at almost every meal. I have a freezer full of meat that we raise ourselves.  It is the same beef that we raise for thousand’s of families to serve at their tables. But, I have to always stop and think that not every family eats beef like my family does. 

I strive like most moms to make sure my kids get a balanced diet. I am always thinking, did they eat enough fruit and vegetables today; how about milk, did they get enough calcium today; am I instilling these important eating habits that they will carry with them throughout their life? But one thing I don’t worry about is their protein intake because I know that feeding them beef means I am getting a big bang for my buck. Beef is packed with the good stuff that their bodies need.

Tumbleweed captured in fence on our farm
Not all protein is created equal.  Sure, I’ve found myself packing peanut butter sandwiches in lunches, thinking well that’s good enough for protein. But is it? When I look at this list, sure it is. All of these foods have 25 grams of protein. But, it’s not realistic for me to get my kids to eat 1 ¾ cups of black beans. I also have to admit that I’ve never even served Quinoa in my house. After all it’s related to the tumbleweed and where we come from that’s not food.

In a world that is concerned with kids and obesity this chart also explains the calories involved with getting 25 grams of protein. That is where not all proteins are created equal. The dietary guidelines have proposed to cut lean red meat out of our diets. Looking at this comparison of foods and calories, it takes twice the calories to get the same 25 grams of protein from beans and grains compared to lean beef.  

So what can you do? Take the time to comment on the proposed guidelines. This link takes you to the comment section, you can read what others have commented and the full proposal. Remember that you can make difference.  Comment period closes May 8th. 

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Pirate Day

I left last Saturday for a 7 day trip. I try to avoid these long trips but sometimes I just can’t. I’m an organizer so I try to have everything planned before I leave so the kids can continue to function without me. I put together crock pot meals for my Cowboy to start and I have all the favorite clothes washed up and a post on the fridge of what days need what- like Thursday is library day. 
Then on Monday I get the email that Friday is pirate day at school. Ugh- Pirate Day- really of all the days to have while I’m traveling! Cowboy could pull off princess day or school spirit day or even a specific color day (last week was strips- he could have done that) but not a complicated costume experience like pirates...

I talked to the crew on Tuesday and we discussed our options.  Miss O said she was fine with not dressing up like a pirate.  Miss R said she didn’t even like pirates.  So, I felt better with the whole experience and didn’t even bring it up to Cowboy. I checked again with the girls on Wednesday night and same story.  Yesterday I made the decision to grab an earlier flight and get home Thursday night instead of Friday night. Well the good Lord had other plans and we ended up missing my connecting into home last night.

To divert here- I was traveling with my cousin Kelli and a woman on our plane started to experience seizures and Kelli being a nurse was able to be with the woman while we had to make an emergency landing in Madison, Wisconsin. I had been shocked how easy we were able to switch our flights to a whole day earlier and now I why- we needed to be on the flight for Kelli to provide her gift to this woman. Thank God for his interference, Kelli was amazing and I believe made a difference for this woman and certainly the passengers of the plane.  

So, that all means no pirate costumes at school on Friday.  Now I’m sure my girls are not the only ones who were not dressed like pirates and they weren’t sad. But certainly this traveling mom feels bummed that I failed and no eye patches left my house. 

I have no pictures of my beautiful kids from Friday morning (forgot to ask Cowboy to take them).   But they probably fit in just fine - hair not combed, dirty wrinkled clothes and bad attitudes- Cowboy has been in charge for a week.  Maybe he is good at pirate costumes...

Sunday, November 10, 2013

What My Mommy Does

A while back I was sitting at my spot at the kitchen table with my laptop and phone.  Which is pretty much my normal work routine. I had never stopped to think about how my kids perceive my work until this particular day.

My youngest was dashing through the kitchen with a friend she had over to play. She stops. Turns to her friend and points at me and says "That's my mom working- all she does everyday is type on her computer and talk on the phone." I look up from my computer to see her friend look me up and down with a puzzled face, shrug her shoulders and run off.

It got me to thinking- what is my job title? When people ask me what I do it is hard to explain. I often give people a long stare and an even longer explanation of the current project I'm working on to somehow justify that I'm a skilled production person. So, how can I expect my kids to know my job if I don't even know how to explain my job.
I'm a:
Housekeeper (that we should fire)
Social media freelancer
Board Member
Quilt Shop Partner -( check out
Economic Development Coordinator
Skilled Farm Assistant  (that is highly undervalued)

So, how do I wrap that all into one cool job title? I've thought and thought and just can't come up with anything. Freelancer just doesn't have the cool ring to it that encompasses my career.

My kids understand what their dad does- he's a farmer. He has the cool title that explains it all. He puts on his suit everyday- which is his winter coveralls this time of year and leaves the house at 8:00 am every morning.  He comes home from his job every night about the same time and he can tell them what he did that day and they understand it.  When people ask them they can say my dad is a farmer with pride!

So, it certainly has become evident to me that I probably won't be asked to come and speak at school career day.  But hopefully someday my children will look back and see that I made the career choices I did to spend time with them and make the moments matter to them count. Maybe that's all the job title I need.

Monday, May 20, 2013

When I Grow Up...

Last week Miss R graduated from Kindergarden.

It's a big event in a young person's life and marking it with a party is very appropriate.

Something weird with my computer- but you get the picture
In our small community there is only one class of Kindergarden but Miss R's is a healthy size of 22 busy little people.  Miss Hammond & Miss Ogle have done an amazing job of keeping everyone moving in the same direction and everyone is moving onto 1st grade!

Let me just start off by saying Miss R wore an amazing outfit- I personally think it made it in the TOP 5 on her Kindergarden fashionista list. It had sparkles, flounce and matching flip flops. Plus it was a good hair day.
What really caught my attention at the event was this simple display of each child in Miss R's class holding a sign to complete this sentence:
7 out of the 10 boys in her class want to be farmers.  Wow, I'd say that is a pretty good percentage of future farmers in our community! I was a little surprised at that many kids who see their future in farming but on the other hand -- Proud that so many of our kids see themselves walking in their mom and dad's footsteps to carry on the tradition of raising food.  It would have been fun to dream about being a baseball player,  race car driver, police man, hunter-- all popular boy jobs.  But no, instead they want to be FARMERS! 

I can't wait to see how these kids grow and become their dream. 

Now for Miss R- the sign she is holding-  Ballerina. 
I was surprised by this, since for over a year now she has talked about being a Doctor. She goes into complete detail every time she talks about it; explaining that she wants to help people and make them better. When I questioned her about her profession change she said that she'll "make her final decision when she's 18"

...stay tuned, it could get interesting.

Friday, April 19, 2013

Happy Birthday Miss R

Today my baby turns 6.  It's with great pride that I say Happy Birthday to my beautiful spunky little girl.
Here's what I hope for you in the next 6 years to come and more beyond that:
1. Laugh- you see funny in everything and I never want that to stop
2. Keep your style. If you notice in this picture she has on her pink sparkle boots- there's always room for sparkle according to Miss R.
3. Sing- Although it drives us all crazy at times we love your songs and I always want to hear that voice.

One more thing to record for prosperity... Yesterday Miss R had a few friends out to the house for her birthday party.  Cowboy is required to help with these functions to help me pull off my crazy birthday party's (since the epic Miss O party of '11).  Cowboy didn't grow up with sisters so he really has no idea what he is getting into having two girls, but more and more layers unfold all the time.  At the point yesterday when all 6 of the girls at my house started into a Pep Cheer they had learned at cheer camp, I looked over at Cowboy to watch his face.  The girls all in unison where standing in the living room doing their cheer. His look was of amazement and concern and it just made me laugh! --Cowboy this is just a glimpse of what the high school years will be!  Everyone Wish Him Luck.

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Midnight Ride to the E.R.

I knew that Cowboy wasn't waking me up at 4:30 am to visit about my day.  This time of year I don't get to see Cowboy much, he's night calving so when he's in the house during the day- he sleeps.

Nope at 4:30 am the conversation will start like this: "Can You Come Help Me?"  Which can mean one of two things:
1) I need help outside with a cow calving
2) I'm bleeding

Unfortunately for me it was #2 last night.

Cowboy had went out to night check around 3:30 am and was helping a new mom 'with the finer points of motherhood' as he put it. Somehow in the process of holding the calf up close to her for it to nurse she showed him.  He got kicked in the head and tore his lip open.

Now a conversation I've had many times in my tenure with Cowboy is the "Should I go to the Emergency Room?" Which usually means if we are having that conversation the answer is YES! But second and third opinions are always welcomed.

Cowboy had woke me up for that opinion.  Now something you need to know about me is that I don't like blood.  Up until I met Cowboy I had only been to the emergency room once in my life- and it was to take some people who wreaked a pickup down the road from the ranch.  In the first two years I was dating Cowboy I went to the emergency room 3 times! Once right before we got married (that's another post).

Although I don't like blood I can usually hold myself together until we make it to the Emergency Room. Each time I have taken him in the staff and Doctor always ask me if I'm ok before tending to him! I must be a sight because he is the one usually bleeding.

It only took one glance with sleep still in my eyes at the cut for me to know an Emergency Room visit was his next stop.  We're so fortunate in our little community on the prairie to have an amazing hospital with staff that stitched him right up! He was in and out in a little over an hour.

He was home and dressed to go back outside to try again with the new mother before 6 am.  No rest for the tired or hurt when baby calves need to eat.

Let's hope that's our only visit to the E.R. this calving season. But, I fear we are just getting started...