Kidding season has started and once again I’m thankful to have my own personal goat midwife to help in times of trouble, because I’m just awful at the job. Every time these goats are in labor, I fall to pieces. I’m completely, utterly, useless. My youngest son feels the same way I do. So while Bunchkin and the other kids are right in there (and I do mean IN THERE!) with the goats:
Did I mention I don’t handle crisis well? A few weeks ago, my sister-in-law gave me a brand-new (to me,) heavy duty sewing machine. I bought myself the sharpest, sturdiest needles I could find for the project I’m working on and upon my very first use of this new, super-tough equipment, I put the needle right through my finger when my youngest bumped up against me. I stared in horror at my finger, pinned to the machine, screaming “help! I don’t know what to do! I don’t know what to DO!!!” My three youngest burst into tears. My five oldest (ever level-headed in times of crisis [they take after their daddy]) ran for the bolt cutters. Somehow I managed to extract my finger (without use of the bolt cutters) and a neighbor (my new best friend!) was able to take out the needle and thread. I can now testify that this machine, combined with the proper needle, can sew right through ANYTHING!!!
I’m doing a lot of sewing, lately (now that my finger has healed,) because the kids are making cloth pads for a friend to save up for a saddle (you can find them on her website www.joyfullivingnaturals.com.) My sister-in-law and I were joking about how they force me to spend hours at the sewing machine, doing all the stitching, but in all seriousness, they’re KILLING it! These are all the pads they’ve made JUST THIS WEEK!!! They’re determined to have that saddle by the end of Summer.
The lack of a saddle doesn’t keep the kids from riding and they hop on bareback whenever they can. Even the lack of a horse doesn’t keep them from “riding” … in fact, they’ve gotten pretty good at cross country:
There’s no doubt that even without a saddle, the kids are better riders than I am. A few nights ago I tried getting on my very tall horse without the aid of a mounting block. I somehow managed to get my foot into the stirrup, hoist myself up halfway, and then sort of dangled for a little while trying to get the rest of my big ole’ butt up there. Finally, I gathered all my diminutive strength and gave one last heave up… and right off the other side!!! Sometimes I really think maybe I’m not cut out for this whole riding thing.
Speaking of things I’m not really cut out for…. Bunchkin and I are learning a song on the violin together that I’ve wanted to play for years. Or, rather, she is learning both parts the song and then teaching me my part because I don’t know how to read music (bless her heart.) So far it’s going really well. When I asked the other day if I sounded like a “squeaky rat” she looked at me sadly and said “yes.” Then informed me: “it just gets harder from here.” She’s also been giving me lots of helpful tips, like:
“You hit the wrong note.”
“Your bowing is backward.”
“You’re supposed to play that on the A string.”
She’s a bit of a perfectionist.
Personally, I’m taking a page from Florence Foster Jenkins. They may say I couldn’t play, but no one can say I didn’t play!