"You cannot legislate the poor into freedom by legislating the wealthy out of freedom. What one person receives without working for, another person must work for without receiving. The government cannot give to anybody anything that the government does not first take from somebody else. When half of the people get the idea that they do not have to work because the other half is going to take care of them, and when the other half gets the idea that it does no good to work because somebody else is going to get what they work for, that my dear friend, is about the end of any nation.

You cannot multiply wealth by dividing it."
Dr. Adrian Rogers 1931-2005

Saturday, September 17, 2011

A Glimpse

The internet has afforded the world an opportunity to see places most of us will never see. Before we have had to rely on things such as the National Geographic and television programs and to be honest although interesting, is only a teeny peek. Blogging allows everyone to share things that are perhaps unique to their region, in a simple post!

Where I live in southern New Mexico near both the Texas and Mexican border, we have tarantulas and they migrate twice a year. In fact, I consider it a season as we do not have real seasons like most folks do...so to add flavor I have added Tarantula Season to the list of seasons we have here.Here is a small tarantula making his (her?) way across the front of the property.

Another working through the fencing of the garden area.

And Samson age 6.5 months trying to figure out what this critter is. The chickens crack me up as they rush to peck at this movement, the tarantula raises up and the chickens squawk off!

Funny how a glimpse into another region makes you say..."Well what do you know!"

I thank all of the bloggers out there worldwide that afford me many opportunities to say that! Even what is mundane to us is amazing to another~so keep on writing, as we are sharing the world~one post at a time!

Other seasons in southern New Mexico include but are not exclusive:
Pot Holder Season-this is the season where the steering wheel is so ferociously hot that you need to wear potholders for the first twenty minutes of the drive so you don't burn your hands.

Surface of the Sun Season-pretty much self explanatory

Flash Flood Season-rare and based upon if and when it decides to rain in this desert region

Winter-coldest 36 hours EvEr!!(kidding-maybe a tad longer and we do have the rare snowfall)

Rattlesnake Season-cripples this blog author into action then when the Season ends she is able to breathe again. Now we are in the end of the season, the rattlers are fat and sassy and are not interested in scaring the heck out of me.

Missing the Sun Season-this is rare too, but I thought I better make sure those that don't live here appreciate that we have some bad seasons too. This season seems to be only 3 to 4 days. The sun shines lovely and bright the rest of the year.

Oh and of course I need to say that I would not live anywhere else in the world~ southern New Mexico is so lovely and the sky is so vast that I smile when folks say the planet is overcrowded. If you ever have a chance and you travel to this neck of the woods, a simple day of taking in the sunrise and sunset will change you forever, I promise!

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Media Bias?

Number of poor hits record.

I always am amazed at articles such as this. I am not minimizing the reality for many Americans as life in the past 3 years has drastically changed. What I wish to point out is a reality elsewhere.


I was going to list many more conditions of real poverty worldwide. I decided against this as Americans are far from poverty.

American children attend school for free. American children are taken to school for free. American children are fed at school, sometimes twice a day, for free. Americans can go to a library and read books about anything for free. Americans have food pantry's at many churches nation wide to stretch budgets and are given food. Americans can go to churches nation wide and are given clothing. Americans can go to the Emergency Room and be treated for a simple cold to a catastrophic illness and have this care regardless of money.

Our understanding of poverty has been glossed over in the media. On one hand we see news from around the world and the media points out the injustice, the poverty, the disease and reveals deep poverty in nations where people live off of less than a dollar or two a day. Then the same news source has the ability to write an article and suggest that 46 million Americans are living at or below the poverty standard. For who? Believe me, a large portion of the world would love to be as poor as many of the 46 million Americans.

I would love to be as poor as some of these folks. When a person on benefits ends up with more spending money than my family does, seems like there is a problem, but it is not poverty. It is a pretty nice life in America regardless of what the media says. If you see a family that you perceive to be poor here you can be sure of a few things. If they have a baby, that baby is wearing throwaway diapers. If they have school age children, the children attend school instead of work. If no bread winner exists, the country becomes the wallet and these families have food available. In fact, they can go to convenience stores to use their benefits as well as well as some fast food restaurants.

Does that clear things up a bit? How poor is our nation? We are so poor that we permit food stamps to be used in a fast food restaurant! In dire poverty we would wish to ensure food for more than one meal even for the same price. I can eat for 2 weeks on $42 dollars and have food left over, and have been working on this post so stay tuned.

We must read the news and filter the bias. We must appreciate that the media in the United States leans further left each year and America is the bad guy in many of the stories. We must appreciate that this nation-America, is a beacon for many right now. My father-in-law came here to give his children a life he could never have imagined. He understands poverty and it is not here in the extreme that is listed.

The title should be something more of standards of living are adjusting to current economic downturns for 46 million citizens.

Oh and yes there are really homeless people in the US. Yes, there are truly very poor people here. But the numbers are far lower than the media shares.

But most poor in the US have access to things that many in the world never will have.

If you wonder how rich or poor you truly are...jump here and calculate your income earnings verses everyone else in the world.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Simple Life

We went in the mountains a week ago and Fourth wanted to climb the trees. As the desert has few trees that one can climb we said okay.

The trees had nothing on a 15 year old!Why yes, my uncle was a monkey~why do you ask?

Life can be as simple as climbing a tree. Perhaps by the time Fourth has her own child and the child is 15 the Double Nickel will have a tree that can be climbed to the clouds...who knows?

Hoping my readers have a simple day today!!

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Ten Years Ago

We were living in the upstairs of a fire department waiting for our house to be ready. Bill had hired on as a deputy and they needed him to start as soon as possible. The local fire department offered us the living quarters while we waited for the house.

The fire department phone rang around 6:30 am. It was my mom. She told me to turn on the television...I did and did not turn it off for several days.

I would never have guessed that our nation would be where we are today as 9-11 changed me and my family forever.

Bill actually became a volunteer fireman in the department as well as a deputy sheriff/coroner.

In 2008 our 19 year old son enlisted in the US Army. In 2009 our 17 year old son became a volunteer fireman.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

On My Mind...Prayer

I heard some news this week that made me cry. Sometimes I am that way. I wear my emotions on my sleeve and I always have. Before I get to the news I would like to share some neat things that have happened since I began blogging in 2006.

I met a blogger via blogging. He and I have never met in real life, yet I consider him a close friend. I can mention his blog and my husband will ask me what is going on in this friend's life.

Immediately I connected although at first glance our blogs are of different interest. You see he is in Law enforcement and his stories and his life mirrored the life of my husband and so I could relate.

He is a honorable man.

He is a funny man.

He loves his wife.

He loves his kids.

He is an avid snake and lizard and turtle and well critter man...I always close my eyes and pretend he is talking about chickens or sheep~

He has a pretty neat NY accent.

He paid his home off.

He has a modge-podge of dogs.

He has a story that is frank about why he named his blog the name he did.

He loves America.

He is generous to a core and has for a few years now put together amazing packages for our troops overseas.

Our post content is different as night and day, yet we seem to find the time to respond weekly to each other.

And when my mother died he left this beautiful comment

"So sorry for your loss, I wish there was something I could do to make you feel better. Your mom must have been a pretty amazing woman, I can tell from what I know of you. Tonight, I will do something I do infrequently. I will say my prayers and will include her, you and the rest of your family in them.

My sincere and deepest condolences. "

He made me cry...

This person has become important to me, to my husband and to be honest to my future because I see us 20 years in the future with some more techno gadget than I can imagine laughing about how we blogged in the early years!

He has me crying again. I am a friend of his regardless of us never meeting. Probably we never will. But I am crying because he has shared he has cancer. Dang it of all the things in the world.

But I am not crying as a quitter. I am crying because I know my readers and know that prayer is powerful~and I know that my blog friends will respond~ I know that I can ask you all to pray for my friend Glenn. I know you all have blog friends just like my Glenn.

I believe in prayer. In fact, I know Glenn does too. So today I am asking all my friends in blog world to pray for Glenn. He does not know I am writing this post so I am not linking his page... For Glenn I pray my readers can share this post and ask their friends to come over and leave a comment that you will pray for him too.

Let's unite and leave comments that we stand with Glenn in prayer.

And Glenn-thanks for making a difference in my life. I consider you my friend and love you like family. Corny I know, and I know that you know I am corny...and will take it as it is intended.

Bill and I have added you to our prayers. I give you my favorite scripture for you to contemplate in the days ahead. Philippians 4:13 I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me. I believe that Glenn, with all my soul.

oh and I lifted this photo of Glenn~ when he shared about a fishing trip he took with his son. Glenn~sorry, I actually stole this photo and with you in Law Enforcement-please forgive me. I know the power of images and know everyone will stand with you Glenn. You have my word.

I am sharing this with Down to Earth Readers in the weekly on my mind posting, as well as with EVERY single blogger out there. Please link to this post, for Glenn, for me and for all of us to remember that it is by one small voice that the world can change.


Jen~friend of Glenn

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Friends and Thorns

don't have much in common but on the farm it makes sense.

We noticed that we had something unusual going on for the past week or so. I was very patient and waited until I had the perfect opportunity to snap several photos. Can you guess what you are seeing?
On the bottom of this post you can see the full photo!

On the farm we have a real problem with thorns. No shoe stops the thorns and believe me we have slowly worked through every kind we can think of...

So I am ordering some similar to the photo below.

Maybe a sole of wood will stop a thorn? I am not sure, but I am really ready to not puncture my feet every time I walk outside!

Oh and the first photo? It seems to be of a 'friendship' or bond that has been forming between bird and dog. No kidding. Red the rooster naps with his buddies the dogs all day long. He burrows up in the dogs necks or snuggles like this photo. If I hadn't seen it myself I am not sure I would believe it. So now you know...

Friday, September 2, 2011

Friday Five

My gourd plants. We had a late planting and I am not sure if we will enjoy and fruits of our labor aside from the delightful vines and flowers. Such is life~if things don't go according to plan, regroup and see what you have in front of you!!

This is Ham the Ram. A gentlemen was moving back east and needed to get rid of his last 2 sheep, so we ended up with Ham and another. Last night Ham decided to get out of his pen and wander a bit. Here he is up by the porch. He and I have an understanding~I give him cut up yellow squash and he doesn't charge me!

This is Mrs. Ham. She is ready to deliver soon. She is very sweet and doesn't like yellow squash at all. Running behind Mrs. Ham are the remnants of the Mafia. Not so many in numbers but still a menacing sort~well maybe not so much any more once we gave them a lovely kiddie pool to swim in, but the name has taken!

We feed the cat in the garden to ensure that any rodents thinking of sneaking off with something may smell kitty. He did not eat all of his dry food~and I saw the ants hauling it away, up the wire fencing.

Amazing to me and reminded me of a scripture:

Go to the ant, thou sluggard; consider her ways, and be wise: Which having no guide, overseer, or ruler,Provideth her meat in the summer, and gathereth her food in the harvest. Proverbs 6:6-8. The ants are always busy. Perhaps a good example to us all!

This photo I borrowed from a friend off of Face*book. I cropped out the person, and wanted to share these simple shutters. I save photos of things I wish to try and make, and these shutters are moving up on my list of things to do!!! Aren't they neat?

That's all for my Friday Five! Have a safe weekend!

Thursday, September 1, 2011

A Glimpse: Updated with Recipe

in my kitchen.

While I was making noodles for beef stroganoff I realized how much of a thinker I am. I decided today while I was mixing the noodles why I am not a gadget person. I think it is because I find the cleanup of a gadget takes me more time than the gadget is worth.

So I do not have a noodle rack...

Nor do I have a bread maker.
Or a handmixer.
Or a blender.
Or an electric can opener.
Or a pasta maker.

I love the connection I have when I mix the foods. I love kneading the dough. I love rolling the tortillas. I love that while I bake I am afforded time for my mind to think upon those I love. Amazing with so much available at so little cost, that I prefer less!

I am sharing a glimpse as part of Rhonda Jean's weekly on my mind series.
*Updated to add this simple recipe

Homemade Noodles
1 beaten egg
1/2 tsp salt
2 TBSP milk
1 cup sifted flour

(I always need a bit of warm water to make it consistent enough.)

I mix dry then add the egg, milk and mix with my hands. I add water from a measuring cup have at the side. I knead it a bit, then divide in a few portions, flour my table and begin rolling out. I cut and hang on the racks as I continue. Each layer of my rack is added as needed. The recipe never yields exactly the same because you may roll the dough thinner one time than another etc.

Once all drying I cover with a hand towel and let sit about 10 minutes more then toss in a pot of boiling water that has a bit of salt in it.

ps...most times I use only water. The above recipe is tweaked from 1963 Betty Crocker cookbook, but we have teens and milk last for short time, and I never feel the need to blend instant milk up for such a small quantity.

Drumroll please

and a bit of randomness about things on the farm!

The Great Summer Squash Recipe Challenge is officially over, although the end of summer is not official for a few more weeks. I cooked the winning entry for the 2011 season last night to end the contest with the Double Nickel Farm Winner!

Squash Soup
The tasty ingredients:
1 cup fresh shredded chicken
1.5 cups beef kielbasa sliced and fried before adding
2 cups each pattypan squash, yellow squash, zucchini
1 cup each frozen peas, carrots
bay leaf
2 cloves garlic diced
1 whole onion
1 small can of tomato sauce(this is not the same as spaghetti sauce for readers outside US)
water to top off

Cook on stove top
Bring to a boil then reduce temperature and slowly cook for 20- 3o minutes on medium heat.

This is the winner of 2011 contest based on three criteria:
Use of as much squash as possible
Amount leftover

The farm contest will resume next year. I know I posted only about 8 or so recipes but the farm family had the delight(or misery) of a woman trying to maximize the abundance of squash this season. What I loved about this contest was that it put me back into deep thoughts about the foods I place on the table and the simple joys of cooking once again.

The contest may have ended but our garden is still producing and will for a while as this is the southwest desert. I have a good deal of acorn squash up and coming, many varieties of summer squash, tomatoes, cayenne peppers, chard, lettuce, gourds and pumpkins that delight me every time I walk to my garden, and will be filling bowls on the dinner table as well as the canned shelf for months to come!!

Now on to our visitor yesterday evening. Because we have a bobcat coming on the property Bill contacted the Fish and Game offices of our county. In NM one needs a permit to kill a bobcat unless it is killing your livestock. Now we are well within our rights of killing the bobcat as she has killed a good deal of our chickens and one turkey(yes sadly one that we were to butcher soon). Bill called Fish and Game because we had hoped we could capture the bobcat and relocate it elsewhere. It is a stealth critter and we have a ewe ready to lamb. I do not want this lamb to become choice foods for the bobcat!

Having the county send out the specialist was a way for us to ensure that we have gone through all the proper channels before we protect what is ours, as anyone in the US knows the laws favor animals and criminals far more than property owners.

In addition the pups are now 6 months old. Looks like my daughter and her "spoof" television listing may be our backup as the hunter will become hunted by these teeny tiny pups~ Samson and Delilah!

And since this photo...they have gotten even larger!!