Will try to catch you up on where I last left off -- May 2008.
The Fall of 2008 we said goodbye to the Mennonite family who had been with us for over a year. They lived in their 35' foot trailer which was close to the barn, or should I say slept there. The kids were home schooled and took over the basement of our house for school – five of them plus four others. WOW!!! It was nice to see them go. There were days when we felt overrun by them.
Son, Neil had a great fall in October decorating the club, where he works in Calgary, for Halloween. He ended up in Foot Hills Hospital with a shattered tibia and ankle on his right leg. Judy went down when he had his second surgery and spent several weeks with him as he tried to become mobile at home. It was not a pretty sight. A year later he is still having problems with mobility and pain, especially those cold days of winter.
We enjoyed 2008 Christmas with 60+ of Arthur's family here at the farm. It was nice to bring Dad Amendt from extended care to be with us for the day. He really enjoyed his time. I think every room of our 2000 sq ft home was filled with bodies... the laundry room hosted all the wee ones around small tables for dinner, the office held warm bodies of teens playing card games, the bedroom found the medium size kids watching videos, the guest room cradled wee ones sleeping and in the other bedrooms there were kids playing games or reading, the basement held the older ones either playing games or eating. Anyway we all found a place to camp. It was nice having others drop in to visit as well. There is always room for one more.
2009 is slowing closing ... where does the time go?
We enjoyed our visit with Philip, Arthur's 6 year old nephew. He loved the little Dell Mini from Uncle Arthur. The two of them spent most of their day together over the computer learning new and exciting things. We were impressed with Philip's computer abilities.
Judy continues to work at the Hythe Municipal Office, job sharing. She usually works one week on and one off. She and Cindy like the flexibility of this arrangement. They both enjoy having longer times so they can take off. So, we've had several trips to Calgary this year and out to the coast as well. Arthur continues to help others with computer problems – has helped many learn/use Ubuntu as their operating system. Gone are their headaches of viruses and the blue screen of death. It is a learning curve and Arthur has the patience to teach any willing to learn. We still have the cows so in spring the herd will increase again.
We both serve on the board of Community Futures of Grande Prairie and Region – that means meetings once a month and loan reviews. We feel priveledge to have the opportunity to work with Western Diversification this way.
We had two great crops of hay this year. Sold the first cut almost all off the field. We have enough for the cows and some extra small bales to sell as well. There are usually several buyers each month.
Enjoyed a visit from Judy's sister from Calgary the end of August. She was here in time to help us decorate the Hythe float for the Ag Fair's Parade on August 16. Noreen was impressed with our parade and the fair. Didn't think it would be much, but it kept us well entertained for most of that day. We enjoyed travelling around visiting different sites.
We had a young fellow live in our camper for several months during the summer. It wasn't too bad. He just didn't like it when we wanted him to do some work, like helping with baling, in exchange for room and board. So he choose to leave all his things and move on. We wish him well.
Then in October, Judy's brother and wife came to visit. They had their camper. They enjoyed the quiet of country living and the long walks around the country block. Our dog, Chika, sure enjoyed those excursions. Gerry stayed on while Gwen flew back to Coquitlam. He wanted to hunt here in the North. Arthur and he ended up going to Clayhurst to a friend's farm. No luck. Gerry ended up going back there for another try and finally got his deer. A few weeks later we had six hunters, from Calgary, with their trailers, move onto the farm to use it as their base from which to hunt. They were more successful – three moose, 4 bucks and 1 doe.
We are hoping to go south for part of this winter. Looking for some warmer weather.
Wishing you all a Blessed Christmas and a Happy New Year.