Stops Along The Way

For all of you traveling through Nebraska this summer, I have some great western Nebraska stops you can take to break up your I-80 journey. Going from east to west…

Cody Park in North Platte:

Cody Park has perfect rides for toddlers, and hardly ever do you have to wait in line for more than a few minutes. The smiles on my 3-year-old’s face in the pictures prove the point, and the big kids enjoy it too. You can also eat there for really cheap, and they have huge ice cream cones. The baby size is even big.

 

Front Street in Ogallala:

Ogallala is home to the “longest running summer stock theater production in Nebraska” – The Crystal Palace Review. We went to the show for the first time this summer and will go again. It was very enjoyable. It does fill up, so you might want to call ahead to make sure they have a seat for you. You can eat supper before or during the show or you can just come to watch the show. I hear the rib eye is quite good. 

Lake McConaughy:

If you’re traveling by on a Sunday afternoon and don’t mind taking home some sand, you should try and come hang out with us at Lake McConaughy or the Sutherland Reservoir. We will do our best to show you a fun time and even have a spot for your baby to nap. Although if they are 6 months or older, it might take four hours to finally get them to sleep! 

 

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Right Now in Nebraska

I snapped this picture on my phone when I was at my friend’s house that has the incredible view. I like how it shows a lot about what is happening in western Nebraska right now.

In the bottom of the picture you wee what unwatered grass looks like. DRY. We are really needing rain in our part of the state. We’re at the point where it feels like we’re constantly pleading with God to send rain and always trying not to worry. Oh that we would feel the need for more of Jesus like we feel the need for rain.

Moving on up the picture you see the beautiful green of irrigated corn. Then in the center above that is the golden wheat that farmers are starting to harvest. The contrast between those two this time of year is always so pretty.

Then at the top you have the gorgeous blue sky – the constant in all seasons.

Now check this out. I moved my camera a smidge to the right and it looks like this!

You see a vineyard and then you’re looking at a one acre hop yard. With the price of corn and wheat in the tank, some farmers are stepping out to try new things. This farmer is really going out on a limb. I’m pretty sure you won’t find even a handful of hop yards in our section of the state. It is quite an impressive piece of work!Those posts are huge in real life. Right now the green in the picture is weeds between the rows. The hops are planted in the black weed barrier. I didn’t get an up close picture, but I’m going to have to visit frequently to watch the progress and the process. 

Animal OCD

This has to be one of the most bizarre corn field happenings that has ever happened to us.

From a distance in this field of Brad’s it looks like the planter didn’t plant one row.

When you get closer you can see that corn is there.

It has just been eaten by some creature.

THE WHOLE ENTIRE ROW! The animal did not quit at just a few plants or part of the row and it didn’t not try other rows. It only liked this one and couldn’t bring itself to quit. I’m not even exaggerating.

I think it’s a natural phenomenon. Have you ever seen anything like it?

Summer Reading

If you’re looking for an easy summer read, Back in the Saddle by Ruth Logan Herne would be a good option for you to consider. The cover might leave you wondering if it’s a Christian novel, but I can vouch that it is and that it didn’t contain any content that I would call questionable. It did have a much better written description of a calf being pulled than I could ever write and some good thoughts on kindness, family, and forgiveness. To make it even better, the author thanks our very own Nebraska author Mary Connealy for helping her learn about raising cattle.

The story takes place on a large cattle ranch in the state of Washington. One son returns home unwillingly after working in big city, corporate America. He has two brothers who I’m guessing might be the main characters for the following books in the Double S Ranch series.

It’s not an overly deep book, but it is enjoyable. That’s why I call it good summer reading. Thank you to Blogging for Books for sending this book to me so I could review it for you.

Do Baby Bears Have Mommies? by Crystal Bowman and Teri McKinley is a great children’s book with lots of facts about animals stated in a way that little people will remember them. The title had me thinking it might be focusing on birds and bees types of information – if you know what I mean – but it’s not like that at all. It asks questions that little kids might ask about animals (How do earthworms dig in dirt? Do monkeys like bananas?) and answers them well.

The only thing I don’t like about Do Baby Bears Have Mommies? is that I think having real pictures of the animals it teaches about would be better. It does remind me of the other book I’ve read by Chrystal Bowman and Teri McKinley in that it has great rhyme and rhythm. They have another “I’ve Got Questions” book titled Does God Take Naps? that I would like to check out. Do Baby Bears Have Mommies? is a book I will enjoy reading many times over. Thank you to the Tyndale Blog Network for sharing this book with me to review it for you.

Planting Setup

Brad changed from an 8 row planter to a 12 row planter this year. He wanted to change how his new planter was set up for fertilizing, and so he just did. How he knows all this stuff is beyond me. Here’s a look at his planting fertilizer setup.

The fertilizer is in the white tanks on the side of the tractor.It goes through these cylinders connected to the planter.
Then it goes out through all these red hoses. Look at all that tidy tubing!In the end, somehow fertilizer comes out at each row in supposedly the same rate.
This pump Brad added, which somehow works to make the fertilizer part of that happen for the entire planter, not just one row.So while the seed is going into the ground, it is getting fertilized at the same time. Then it soon starts to grow! Please take time to be impressed!

Brad knows how the tractor and planter work and often if something breaks he figures out what the problem is and can fix it. Would you have a clue how to even start figuring out the problem? I wouldn’t even want to attempt to take off a tire if I had a flat on my car! Farmers do so much more than just drive a tractor and get dirty. As you see from this, they are also mechanics and engineers, (My explanations of things show you I am not!) but they are also so much more!

Planting 2017

We are in the midst of planting season. At the end of last week, we were about thirty percent done.
As of yesterday, just over half of Brad’s corn is planted. That means we have less than half to go. 

It feels like its been “one of those years.”  For instance, I took this nice photo when Brad passed me on my walk as he drove out to the field for the first time this season. Before I was even done with my walk he passed me on his way back to the shop. A hydraulic line had blown and sprayed oil all over the tractor as he was lowering the planter. He hadn’t even tried to plant anything yet. Another day, I thought I’d be nice and ride with Brad a round. It was William’s first tractor ride. As you can see Brad had been really bored and was missing us a lot. (That was sarcasm there.) We got booted after an abrupt stop because something wasn’t working right had Liza’s head hitting the windshield. We didn’t even make it half way through the field.

A flat tire here, a wheel falling off there, questionable seed depth……cornstalks keep plugging the planter, a sensor isn’t working… BUT fields are still getting planted.Some even have corn sprouting already.