Welcome to Antler Valley Farm

farmphoto1041

Dashing thru December

December is always a crazy busy month for everyone I think. Thanksgiving holidays are behind you but you are facing a MOUNTAIN of Christmas parties, plays, family get togethers and endless shopping it seems. Years ago, I commented that we had dashed through December like a sled down a steep hill. Somehow that has always stuck with me and now I always think of “Dashing through December”.

This year was no different. We were extra busy from Day 1, but that also meant we had some extra special things to celebrate this year. I’m getting a little ahead of myself as usual though. Let me start at the beginning of December. Actually, it was the last weekend of November, but let’s not be a stickler for details here, shall we? Okay, thanks!

Maleah wanted to get festive with reindeer antlers and a Rudolph nose on her car. I thought it looked pretty cute actually-especially in the snow we got a few weeks later.

So, the weekend after Thanksgiving we decided that (1) it wasn’t raining and (2) we actually had a day that we didn’t have something going on so we loaded up the kiddos and went to pick out a Christmas tree or two. Yep, we did! We took the day to enjoy each other’s company. Well, at least I enjoyed their company… My family might say otherwise…

My beautiful girls. Of course, Maylin is excited. Isn’t she always? Yes. Yes, she is.

I love, love, love family time. That’s probably pretty obvious though isn’t it? Sorry. You can call me Captain Obvious from now on.

Maylin always wants the cute little tree. This year I almost caved. I mean, look at that face!
However, this is the tree we all chose in the end. Isn’t is lovely? We thought so!
If you look closely behind Camden you can almost see the tiny little tree we let Maylin pick to plant in the yard. Hmmm, I think all the kids look a little tired and grouchy…
Grouchy or not, that is a cute little face!

Just like last year, we bought a tree to decorate in the house and we bought a tiny, little, baby tree to plant outside to celebrate our first year living our dreams on the farm! We still aren’t where we want to be with the farm yet, not even close really. But we are getting closer everyday and we’ve definitely made ALOT of progress this year. So, I will be happy and celebrate with an adorable little butterball of a tree. HA!

This was our lovely tree when we got it home. As you can see Little Jethro Flash was not so sure why a tree was being invited inside. Jessie on the other hand was in love with the tree. In fact, I don’t really have a picture of the tree all decorated because it didn’t stay that way. Nope. Every chance Jessie got, she would run and launch herself at the tree….and get all tangled in the lights! Why?? Just why??? Oh, because she is an overgrown Bassett Hound baby, that’s why. Yep, that is all.
We put up some of the floats outside and managed to hang our wreath on the door without Jessie Wrinkles destroying them. Jessie wasn’t completely sure that the floats weren’t going to eat her and Flash was completely terrified of them. Whew, at least some part of our Christmas decorations were safe! At one point we almost moved the Christmas tree outside but the kids protested so much that we ended up putting it behind the couch. Yeah, that kinda put a damper on the whole Christmas feel in the house. Silly dogs.

It was the Christmas season though, so we were all excited regardless of whether we could see our sweet little Christmas tree tucked safely behing the couch or not. The holiday spirit is within us and not something that should depend on material objects or decorations. Okay, that’s what I told the kids repeatedly, so that’s what I’m repeating here also.

So, moving on! The end of November also brought some really early snow and ice. The first round didn’t last too long but it was pretty to look at.

It wasn’t a lot of snow and ice but it was enough to cause me to slip and slide on the porch. Maybe it was kinda fun. At least it was since I didn’t break anything.

The first weekend in December brought us some great news in the from of an offer on our old house!! Actually, it was more than great news, it was EXCEPTIONALLY GREAT news because the offer was a cash offer and they wanted to close in less than 3 weeks on December 21st. Wow!

We finally had an offer on our home!

And then the realization of trying to move the remaining stuff out of our old house during the craziness of December and while asking Mother Nature to cooperate with us set in. Ha. That last part became hysterically funny as time went on! I think Mother Nature enjoyed laughing at us as we tried to move and fix fences in 10 inch deep snow. I will admit that sometimes it was comical to us as well. At other times…Well, let’s just say that at other times, it was not fun or funny.

I don’t remember the exact dates but sometime around the middle of December Snowmaggedon hit us HARD. We had massive amounts of snow, downed trees and power outages. We were so fortunate to remain with power and not to have suffered many downed trees here on the farm that really mattered. However, the log cabin had multiple trees that came down on fences that had to be fixed in a matter of days before the Due Diligence was up. No pressure though right? Yeah sure. I’m not stressed or anything with all these deadlines. I mean, I still hadn’t even finished my Christmas shopping, but there was still time for that right? Who needs sleep anyway??

I promise, I have lots of snow pictures to share in my next post. This one was getting a little bit to long with all my sappy pictures though. So, I will share all of our snow photos in the next post. Well, maybe not all. I don’t think anyone really wants to look at 100 snow pictures of everything from from snow prints to sledding and everything in between. So, I will try to keep the pictures relevant. Maybe…

The Monday after Snowmaggedon we had an appointment in Greenville for little Jethro Flash to have an echocardiogram to determine the cause of his heart murmur. Thankfully, we were able to make it down our drive in 4WD and make it to the interstate. It still took us over 2 hours to get there though because parts of the Interstate were still one lane roads due to trees hanging in the road. I’ve never seen so many downed trees before!

We finally made it and got some good news. The vet discovered that Flash does in fact have a VSD that is not in a place that can easily be fixed with surgery. The hole in his heart is a little larger than they would like but as long as it doesn’t get bigger as he grows, they expect him to be just fine. He has to have another check up when he’s about a year old, but aside from that, we are hoping and praying that the timid little guy will grow up and roam our farm for many years to come. Yippee!

Look at little Flash’s face. He was so scared that day but he was such a good little guy.

After the vet appointment we came home and spent the afternoon sledding! Again and again! And again every day until the snow melted, which was a while! We split our time between moving loads of stuff from the log cabin while the kids played outside in the snow and doing schoolwork and playing in the snow at home. It was exhausting for me but it was also a lot of fun!

The closer we got to our December 21st closing day the more it seemed to rain. And not just a little rain. Inches and inches of rain. I don’t think anyone would have thought me crazy if I had started building an ark. Seriously, it was a lot of rain! And moving in the rain is NOT fun. Not at all, folks.

We had left a lot of our furniture at the house for “staging” as the realtor called it. O. M. Goodness! Look at how adorable Maylin is in that picture! She was only a few hours old when we brought her home to this house. That feels like just yesterday. She used to love to play Hide-and-Seek under that table. Wow, the memories.
So, most of the “stuff” left in the house was big stuff. This room holds so many memories of my kids learning to crawl and walk, holding them and rocking them late into the night or snuggling up to watch a movie. So, so many memories!
In the playroom we had left some of the kids toys so they would have stuff to play with when we were over there working or mowing. All 3 kids have loved this room and played to their hearts content in this room. I don’t think we will ever again have a “Playroom” that equals this one.
We had bed frames, cribs, changing tables, dressers, treadmills. Oh, you name it and we had to move it. In the rain, of course! But the memories just kept coming! This was the bedroom that all my kids slept in. I will always be able to see their sweet little faces dreaming in this room.
Our sweet, cozy log cabin looked so empty when we were done moving. My kids will never again sit in this dining room and tell us everything on their mind over a meal.
I couldn’t even bring myself to take pictures of the other empty rooms. It broke my heart. Saying goodbye to this house has been so hard for me.
I will always have so, so many memories of this house. To keep from crying, AGAIN, I had to throw in a funny picture I took during the solar eclipse last year.
And memories of my horses in these pastures, but it’s someone else’s turn to make memories in this home.
I found this picture of Maylin skipping down the driveway this spring. I think this is an appropriate way to say Good-bye to this house. Remembering all the beautiful memories, but skipping into the next beautiful chapter of adventures in our life together. So, good-bye beautiful log cabin. Thank you for all the memories!

The day we closed on our house it was raining. Pouring rain is a much better description actually. The closing went well, but the rain always seems to dampen a celebration somehow. We celebrated with a dinner out and then went home to focus on Christmas!

Christmas was great this year. We were able to relax a little. We tried to enjoy our first Christmas in our little home. While being in such a small house presents it’s challenges at times, we had a wonderful Christmas.

I even mangaged to get Christmas pictures the day after Christmas. I prefer to think of it as 364 days early for next year as opposed to a day late for this year. Ha!

This is how a picture gets made at the Carter house. Maleah has her eyes closed and Camden is looking down at the dogs.
I tell everyone to look at me and Jessie looks away. Hello, Earth to Camden! Look at your Mother already!!
Jessie has to turn to show off her figure and Maylin is left speechless somehow. Rocko is ready to bolt and Camden cannot seem to raise his line of vision off the ground. Poor Maleah looks like her face is about to crack from smiling constantly.
Jessie is completely bored, Flash looks like he is afraid for his life, Maylin is finally smiling, Camden is FOREVER looking down, Maleah has her eyes closed and Rocko is ignoring the entire situation. Actually, this is a pretty real representation of life at our house! Ha.
Oh dear. Jessie is exhausted, Flash is so, so patient (He will get an extra treat or two when this is all over!), Maylin has started making faces, Camden is finally looking up, Rocko is blinking weirdly, and Maleah is mumbling something I’d probably rather not know. Oh, wait. That was me mumbling something I’d rather not repeat!
Finally. FINALLY!! After about 10 mintues and 100 different pictures, we have a winner. Okay, this photo isn’t going to be a winner in any photo contests but it’s a sure winner for me. All the kids are looking and somewhat smiling, the Basset babies are looking like themselves and poor Rocko is ready for his pet bed. That’s an actual picture that captures personality and real life in our house. LOVE IT!!

I hope everyone had a Merry Christmas and I am wishing everyone a Happy New Year from the Carter Crew!!

Share this post

Share on facebook
Share on google
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin
Share on pinterest
Share on print
Share on email