Saturday, December 31, 2022
Thursday, December 29, 2022
Wednesday, December 28, 2022
Aunt "AD" (Adrienne) babysits
John, Isaac, and I (along with my parents) had the opportunity to do one of my favorite yearly events (although COVID shut it down for awhile.) We went to the Barry Bales concert. If you aren't familiar with Barry, he is a member of Alison Krauss & Union Station. His wife Aliceson, is one of my dearest friends, and their son Marshall is a good friend to my boys. Once a year, he brings 3-4 other musicians together and without any practice, puts on an AMAZING concert. Here are some videos from the concert:
So, I asked my brother's wife, Adrienne "AD" to babysit. She brought her two daughters and held down the fort with my three kids (Isaac was with us.) She thought it would be HILARIOUS to send a bunch of texts with photos and videos of the kids "breaking all the rules."
Tuesday, December 27, 2022
Winter Wonderful Wonderland
Then, it was time to get out on the frozen pond! This doesn't happen very often around these parts!
Elijah shot his first "eat your own dinner" animal late this afternoon. He got a shotgun for Christmas and is learning how to shoot dove during "Dove Season." We think it's very important to shoot for food (unless the animal is a predictor/pest) so after shooting the dove, he and John cooked it up and ate it together.
Monday, December 26, 2022
Joy brings Joy
From the very beginning, little Joy was one of our favorite puppies. The last one born, she just had a look that none of us could not be enthralled by. Even Mr. Tough Guy, JB, admitted she was his favorite in the litter. She just drew you to her. People noticed it online (we had no less than three previous buyers consider buying Joy and adding to their herd), but what she did was more than just pictures. She did it to us in person too.
Joy was always seeking people. When other pups were eating, she would leave Mama or the food bowl and go and find the people that were close by to snuggle up to. Puppies never leave nursing if they can help it. But Joy did. She chose people over food every single time.
But ... for some reason, Joy kept "falling through the cracks." Of course, I know the reason now. The reason is: this was supposed to be Ms. Debbie's dog. God knew that! And he wasn't going to let anything stop Joy's destiny. Joy was the second pick for nearly ALL of our buyers. I had probably two dozen people text me expressing interest in Joy, but for one reason or another, decided it wasn't good timing. She just kept not being purchased.
We had NO doubt Joy's perfect family was out there. Who was it? As I always do, I prayed and "fretted" a bit about who would own Joy. But in the end ...
... That's when suddenly, and I still don't know how, Ms. Debbie stumbled upon my post on Facebook. She was the friend of a friend of mine (and I've since discovered we have quite a few other friends in common), and she really wanted a puppy. She has a little Chihuahua, but, no offense to little tiny dog owners, an Aussie is just a whole different level of puppy. However, when Debbie asked me the price of the dog, she immediately knew it was out of her reach.
I really feel that our puppies are a ministry for us. We (sometimes) make some money raising them, but truly, they are an act of love. Love for dogs. Love for the joy they bring our family. But mostly LOVE in seeing these puppies go bring joy to other people. There is just something about a dog that is a beautiful thing in a person's life. I grieve the day that we place our last puppy, as we don't foresee that after Raven finishes her tenure as a Mama, we will be doing this again.
I truly felt God tell me that Debbie was one that was supposed to own Joy. Money is never a big deal to us when it comes to making sure the doggies have the right nomes. So I told Debbie I would trust her to make payment plans ...
... and the rest was history.
She was sobbing when we placed Joy in her arms today. (So were many of us.) She just said, "I have just always wanted a puppy like this. You cannot imagine how happy you have made me." When they got in Debbie's truck, little Joy climbed onto her lap and up behind her neck. Sooooo sweet!
Since sharing Debbie's story with a few people, I've been asked if they can help with the funds for Ms. Joy. To-date, we've received nearly half of the cost of the dog. (The puppy was $750, Ms. Debbie paid $50 so far, and as of today, I've received $400 in donations!) This means that right now, Ms. Debbie only owes another $300.
I don't know much about Ms. Debbie. But I know from people who know her, that she is a fantastic human, and that she will give Joy a great home. She lives alone, and she said, "Joy is going to bring Joy into my home!"
(If you are interested in making a donation to Ms. Debbie for the cost of the dog -- or for additional vet/food bills -- you can paypal me at firstname.lastname@example.org. She has not asked for ANY help, but I've just fallen so hard for her and Joy.)
Sunday, December 25, 2022
Saturday, December 24, 2022
Coal goes home
Here are some photos of our last moments with Coal. Also, some pictures of his new home!
We did a Christmas Eve with my parents and brother and family this evening. It’s been so cold. And now Isaac and I both have colds. And John has been working the last two days.