Welcome to Antler Valley Farm

A September to Remember

September started out crazy…and it continued pretty much the same way the entire month long.  But, boy was it a fun month!  Whoo-hoo!!!  Well, the kids might disagree that the first week of September was that much fun.   With all the fencing and mowing we did, the kids might just tell you that I was trying to kill them.  I assure you, I was not.  There might have been some complaints filed and rejected, but…in the end we sure made ALOT  of progress.  We have fencing all the way to the house and all along the creek now.  That is nothing short of a miracle!

 I can’t wait to pull in the driveway and have Minnie greet us and follow us all the way to the house.  Yes, our cow will do that.  She is more of a hybrid guard dog/finicky cat/ cow thing…If that were a thing.. Yeah, she’s kinda hard to explain….Maybe I should just leave it at that?…

 We finally have enough grass for more cows and the fencing is well under way for them.  This is the future hay field and cattle pasture.  You can barely see our little house halfway up the hill.  Somehow I can still manage to hear my kids and my husband when I’m ALL the way over here working on fencing.  I might not be able to see them, but I can hear them all right.  My family is loud.  Really loud.  I guess that makes it easy to keep up with them though, right?  

     I think the cows will enjoy this pasture next spring.  I am so ready!!  Bring on some cows baby!!

Jim did a job one morning for a guy who lives at the very top of Yellowtop Mountain.  He was really surprised that he could see our farm from all the way up there.   It was really humid and foggy that morning so these next pictures aren’t great, but you can still see parts of our farm.  That’s so cool!

Do you see the open fields in the middle of the photo?  That’s our farm!  I’m really hoping Jim does another job up that way again soon-on a clearer day.  

It’s hard to see through the haze, but it shows our driveway and part of Desi’s pasture on the right side of the picture.  

 The kids were rockstars about keeping up with their schoolwork and not complaining constantly when I made them go work on fencing again…..and again…and yet again!  So, we tried to reward them with a few “Fun Friday Field Trips”.  They really liked it and so did I.  They learned quite a bit at the Mountain Gateway Museum. 

 We also went to Davidson’s Fort in Old Fort.  Jim was really excited about that field trip, but the fort was basically abandoned.  That didn’t stop Jim from goofing off and making us all laugh though.  I wonder how long he would laugh if we left him there for a while…..Hmmm…. Just kidding.  I love ya, Honey!

We spent most September afternoons in the pool because we all knew that summer was winding down fast.  The end of August and the beginning of September brought horrible heat and humidity so the pool felt wonderful!

 This is the Superhero jump.  It’s kind of his favorite.  

As you can see, Camden has perfected the Superman jump.  Or maybe it’s the Superman punch?  Or some combination of both?

 This one cracks me up!  It looks like he’s surfing but really that’s just how he was going into the water.  Too funny. 

Yes, sometimes Dad gets a little wild and throws him into the water.  Cam loves it and always rushes back for more.  (Disclaimer: I assure you that no kids were harmed in the taking of these pictures.  My camera might have suffered a different fate though…)

 Maylin loves to try the Superhero jump as well with her own flare added to it. 

 I think this is my favorite shot of Maylin.  She is so stinking cute and charismatic!

 Look at Maylin’s face.  So adorable!  Camden is, of course, wanting a turn with the camera.  While in the pool???  Uh, no.  

 Sweet Jessie Wrinkles loves the water.  She really wants to swim in the big pool but she can’t quite figure it out.  I fear she may need a life jacket to help her.  In the meantime, she splashes around in the kiddie pool which is a tiny bit too small for her I’m afraid.  

This is the look Jessie gives me when I won’t put her in the big pool.  It’s pitiful!  Look at that face!

She really has perfected the pitiful look.  Sorry girl, you can’t swim yet and your ears weigh a ton when they are wet!   

 This is Jessie’s favorite place to nap after her swimming lessons.  She is channeling her inner dark side. Ha!

The second week of September brought a major hurricane to the coast of the Carolinas.

 What??? Did you say hurricane??  Yes, yes I did. 

It also brought the World Equestrian Games.  I’m not sure which brought more drama to the region, but I can tell you that the WEG was by far my favorite!!

We were supposed to get almost a foot of rain and 60mph winds originally.

 This poor turtle was racing for higher ground. 

Thankfully, that forecast was changed and we only received a few inches of rain and 20-30 mph winds.

 That was enough to bend all the trees and knock out power for our neighbors though.

 The poor power guys showed up to find a pesky tree of ours wrapped around the power line.

After they called in Asplundh to cut the tree, they started climbing power poles to fix the problems.  That took a while…in the pouring rain.  

 After about an hour the entire fleet of Duke Power trucks showed up at our house.  At one point we had 15 trucks sitting in our driveway.  I felt so bad for them.  I packed up all the snacks, fruit and vegetables we had and sent Jim to deliver it to them.  They were so awesome! 

The next morning, we woke up with power and it went out as soon as I stepped out of the shower.  Of course it did.  I was supposed to go to the World Equestrian Games with Maleah.  And we have no power to dry my hair!  Oh, well.  I grabbed my hat and threw on some clothes and we were out the door.   Maleah and I had a great day and got to see the stadium jumping phase of the 3 day eventing, para-dressage warm-ups AND we got to leisurely walk and talk for hours through all the vendors.  Did I mention that it was a leisurely and relaxing walk, complete with conversation and no interruptions?  It was all Amazing!!

I should probably pause here to tell you that I love horses.  I mean, I LOVE horses.  Always have, always will.  So an event like the World Equestrian Games in my backyard… Yeah, of course, I’m going!!!  I did restrain myself and only went 4 days out of the 2 weeks.  I kept telling myself that Jim can only take off so many days to watch the kiddos and still pay the bills.  But, boy was it hard not to go everyday!!!  However, I am grateful that I have a wonderful husband who encouraged me to go for 4 whole days!!!

 The TIEC is such a magnificent facility.  I love going there.  It’s my happy place.  🙂

 Wearing a hat that day turned out to be a great thing since it drizzled most of the morning.  Spending a relaxing day with one of my favorite people is always a great time.  This girl is such a sweetheart.  I’m just not sure how she got to be 18…

On Wednesday I took Maylin to the WEG to introduce her to vaulting.

 Maylin was so excited about going!

 Gymnastics on horseback?  What’s not to love???

 Of course, Maylin loved it.  She was mesmerized!  

 I took her to see a vaulting demo during one of the breaks and she was picked to get up and try out some vaulting moves.  She loved every second of it!

 Maylin jumped up there like she owned the place and proceeded to show them how it was done.  

 I loved spending the day with my little firecracker.  I need more time with these kiddos.  It’s just all going by too fast!!

On Friday, my big sis, Melissa, and I watched show jumping in 90 degree heat.  It was so worth it though.  Team USA won gold in a jump-off!  Whoo-hoo!   Then on Saturday, we splurged for a brunch at the Legends Club and watched Para-dressage.  I felt so out of place!  There was no yelling.  No spilling of drinks.  No one dropped their food or chewed with their mouths open.  I even enjoyed an intelligible, adult conversation.   And I lost count of how many times I went to the bathroom by MYSELF!!!!  I can’t even remember the last time Melissa and I spend some quality time together.  It was definitely overdue.  And we will definitely make a point to do it again soon!

Love all the memories we made Big Sis!  Thanks for taking me!! 

Then Melissa and I  watched the vaulting finals.  Loved it!!  The whole event was heaven for me.  It was just pure heaven to see all these beautiful horses.  I really needed the break.  I am so blessed to have a husband who stepped up and took care of the kids and the animals each day.  Although he was more than a little frazzled, he still encouraged me to go each morning.  I love that man!  By the end of the weekend, I have to say, I was really missing my kiddos though!  Okay, fun time is over.  Now, back to my daily life.  Fencing, mowing, fencing and more fencing.  Come on kids, we have work to do!




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