Sunday, November 29, 2015


I fumbled to pull my hood over my head as I juggled the cups of coffee in my hand.
One was for me, the other for the dirty faced farmer behind the wheel of the roaring combine.

Just as I got close enough to feel the breeze from the corn stubble blowing out from behind the monstrous machine, it came to a slow halt.
Word had come in the bin was full. Looks like the last of corn would have to stay in the field a bit longer.

I turned back towards the house.
It was November night dark as I slowly trekked up the gravel road with my shoes squeaking on the damp ground.

As I walked through the door I headed for the boxes of Christmas decorations I had pulled out of the basement a few hours before.

The house was quiet as I began unpacking the newest pieces of my nativity scene.

Usually I bring out the most meaningful pieces first. 
I like to start at the beginning with Jesus and Mary and Joseph.
I imagine the shepherds and the wise men.
I put them out, almost as if I'm a kid again, going through a story in my head.

But this time, I thought twice before putting Jesus in that manger.
I saw that empty barn sitting on my foyer table and instead of some dreamy, far away land, I thought about my world.

I started wondering about those innkeepers. I started wondering about that barn.
How just a few days before it was just like any other old barn.
Before it became part of the grand story.

And it occurred to me that I might be a lot like that innkeeper who didn't even recognize hope when it came knocking on his door.

You see I started thinking maybe that innkeeper had been out all day taking care of  a cow and her calf.

Or maybe he had hammered his finger instead of the nail while building the chicken coop today.

Just maybe that innkeeper had been busy cleaning house.

And cooking pies.

And keeping all the little critters happy.

Don't forget about Bandit.
He wants back in. 
He's wet of course.

Perhaps there was corn to be harvested.

And milk to be shipped.

Hokie games to attend.

And a pet cow that wants to be scratched on the head.

And maybe those innkeepers were just some dirty faced farmers.

And that manger was just in an ordinary barn.

Maybe they just wanted to rest and give thanks for a bountiful harvest.

Watch a beautiful sunset.

And make a few wishes for tomorrow.

Thank goodness someone had a better plan.

Monday, October 26, 2015


I drove to the dairy in the deep fog.
I could barely see the road as I pulled in and sleepy eyed trudged to the office.

A few of the girls had slept in this morning and needed a little nudge to remind them to go and milk.
I'm glad they don't put up as much of a fight as me to get out of bed.

Several of them were milling around already nibbling on a bit of breakfast.
A bit of blue sky began to show above the fog as the door screeched open and the feed truck made another grand entrance. 

As the fog continued to lift, it revealed an ever glorious sight of dew dripping grass and cows slumbering on the hillside.

I don't think I'll ever forget how warm the sun felt this fall morning.

Every day since, the sun has shone a few minutes fewer, and the air has become a little bit chillier.
But I'll always appreciate Autumns delicate decent this year.

It has crept in slowly but surely.

I feel more prepared for the bite it will surely deliver in the days to come.

But for now, I gladly dress in layers and go where the day takes me.

Lately, I"ve been big into the wooly worm saving business.

They seem to get themselves into some sticky situations.

Don't worry, all have been re- homed to the great outdoors upon discovery.
I know, I can't believe I took those photos either ;)

I have gotten into a few sticky situations myself.

 I sure am glad to see Miss 1968 back in the milking barn every morning.

And her wee bitty girl is proving to have a personality just like her mama.

I'm making some new friends, however they prefer for me to be on their level for the best conversation.

A few days have been long of course.

But there's always a reason to party.

And put on some dancin' shoes.

And selfie with you sis of course!

Oh what's that?
1611 says hi.

But even with all the beautiful fall sunshine, 
there are always a few shadows lurking around.

One of the hardest things about being a dairy farmer is often 
watching those sweet girls start to show their age.

Or find out that no matter how hard you try, sometimes you can't save them.

But I guess like the autumn trees know so well, 
sometimes you have to shed what you cannot keep so there is room for the new.

So I'll raise a glass to the seasons bounty

and watch the glow once more.