Monday, August 19, 2013

Sunshine and roses

Good morning, my friends.
I hope all is well with you.

I know that I haven't written in a while.  
One of my readers (thank you, Fred) pointed that out to me.
We definitely have some catching up to do.

Today I would like to share with you my adventure at the State Fair.  

I had never been to the State Fair so 
when the opportunity presented itself, 
I went.

And of course, as fate would have it I started out in the dairy barn. 
(it was the first building I came to)

As you may or may not know
I have a great affinity for milk cows. 
I think they are a thing of beauty.
I always have.
As a woman of "that age" I see their 
lovely fullness hanging from their bony protrusions 
and I see something beautiful.

I get that.  

She may not be pretty to everyone, 
but she knows that she has her place in the world too, 
ya know?

Shower time
As a kid on the farm, I wanted to have milk cows.  
My father refused.
He grew up milking cows 
with my Grand dad 
has had his fill of their care.

Some young ladies.

When you have to milk cows twice a day
it tends to cut into your free time.

So, there I am walking around in this huge building 
looking at the "cream of the crop" 
for the state of Indiana.
Beautiful, shapely, groomed mommas.

I was in cow Nirvana.

It was such an experience for me.

I had gone to the fair alone, 
so there was no one to share
my thoughts with.

Luckily for Al he had a judging seminar that day, 
so he didn't have to go in the barns. 
He would have stood it, I'm sure, 
but he would not have enjoyed it.   

Chewing her cud.
You see
Al is not a farm boy.
He is most definitely a city boy.
When I take him out in the barn
he has this look on his face like he is holding his breath.
Maybe he is.

For me that smell is a welcomed thing.
It means warm, loving friends who depend on you and care about you.
Someone to listen to your good times and your bad times. 
Someone to rest on, depend on and
who trusts you 
keeps ALL of your secrets. 
Granted, mine were horses, but it's the same.

There is an analogy here in this cow's spine about life's path
with it's twists and turns and ups and downs.  

I'm just not feeling it right now.  You are on your own.
Large, loving animals who do have souls.
They just communicate differently than we humans do.  
They trust us with their care.

Isn't this calf beautiful?  
He and three others lay in a pen
where you could pay a dollar 
to come in and pet him. 

Such a beautiful little being.
I crouched next to his pen and spoke to him 
for a few minutes before I took his picture. 
I felt for him being away from his mommy, 
but so the world goes.
In my imagination, at the end of the day 
they were together again.

Freshly showered and ready for the day.

It was hard for me to leave the dairy building, 
but I wanted to see the mules too 
so I had to moooove on.

Imagine how cold the water from the hose was...

On to the next barn....
They look like they are saying "Hello....?  Can we help ewe?"
I walked through the sheep & goat barn next.
It was quite a treat to see the best of the best in the state.

Farming is still alive in kicking in Indiana.
Doesn't he look happy?  
I so enjoyed looking at these animals as I walked to the mule barn.

Evidently, the pigs had "gone home" already.
They had left the two biggest boars 
and a few sows with piglets for the people to see   
This would be Reggie.  I really wonder if he can get up and walk around.

Here's his info.

The piglets were fun to watch.  
We didn't have pigs on our farm either, 
so I found myself just standing 
and taking in their movements.

So many little speckled rear ends.
My father told me that each baby has a designated teat.  
That amazed me.
This certainly did not look like an organized event.

On I went to the mule barn.  
I was so excited to see their wonderful long faces and soulful eyes.

But alas, they had left the day before my arrival.
So, I stepped outside the last barn and looked for my next adventure.  
I rode the people mover to the other side of the grounds 
and discovered the pioneer village.  

This little guy was sleeping in the pioneer barn.
He was across the aisle from two HUGE oxen.

I had a wonderful time at the Indiana State Fair.
I have untold number of painting ideas that I gathered that day taking pictures.
I tend to carry my camera with me most of the time now.
You just never know what you are going to see.

Speaking of which...
just look at this face, you have to love him (dirt encrusted nose and all) 
 This pig lives in West Middleton, IN.  Isn't he something?
He has several friends that live with him.
He may be the one that went after Liea, but he's not talking.

Here is one of my latest endeavors.
Sally & Abel

This painting is a 12 x 24 inch oil.
It was a commission piece for one of my "collectors".
I certainly enjoyed painting this.
I seemed to just flow out of my hand.


If you have a need of a commissioned painting
and you like my style of work, then please feel free to contact me at


Now we need to talk about the horses.
Our little red filly.
If you have read my blogs before this
(Yeah!  Thank you!)
then you know that I grew up on a horse farm.  
Horses were a part of the family.  
My father works hard to take care of his family and his animals.
And as my father's oldest son, 
(that brother of mine didn't come until I was 9)
I spent a lot of time with him in the barn.  
I am sure that my mother would have liked to have her daughter inside the house to help with things, but there was more fun to be had in the barn.

My parents had three beautiful foals born this summer.  
Foal number 1 is a bay appaloosa filly (girl).
Foal number 2 was a red appaloosa filly (again, girl).
Foal number 3 is a white w/red spots appaloosa colt (boy).

As you may also know from my past blog,
foal number 2 had some issues from birth.  
Purdue vets came out to have a look at her 
and gave my dad some suggestions and medication.

We watched that little girl grow strong and straight.  

It was necessary for her to be weened as her mother was
just not doing well medically.  
So, she was weened from her mother 
and all seemed to be going well.
She put on weight and was easy to handle. 
She was shiny and bouncy. 

She did get to spend time out in the front field.  

And then one Sunday morning 
after coming home from church
my father found her in her stall.
She had passed on while he was at church.

We were all shocked.
It was a very painful couple of days for all of us. 
My father's friends rallied around him to help with the burial process.  

Our little red filly is buried in the field
with her mom.

As I sit here typing this with
tears rolling down my face,
I know that life on the farm is not all sunshine and roses. 
I'm just glad that she had some time in the field, with the sun on her back.  
Thank you Lord for that. 

I want to thank you for taking to time to read my blog.
I hope that you enjoyed the photos.
Bicycle driver waiting on a fare at Navy Pier.

My next blog is going to be about our breakneck trip to Chicago to see my stepson Ian graduate from college.   
It will have photos from our night on Navy Pier 
our trip to Fair Oaks Farms 

(I told you it was breakneck) 

Again, thank you for reading.


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