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Awesome April!

April was Awesome. Totally and wonderfully awesome. We had lots going on but we created tons of fun memories as well. And that always makes for an awesome month in my opinion. So, let me tell you all about our amazing month!

April showers bring May flowers. Well, actually, my favorite flowers normally bloom in April not May. The daffodils and Irises are always early birds and I love them for it.

It’s no secret that Maleah loves to be in plays. I mean, absolutely, totally and completely LOVES all the facuets of being in a play. Maylin and Camden are really only there to play with their friends, but they learn the songs and do well in their parts, so who am I to criticize.

Maleah, however, lives for the stage. She doesn’t mind long hours, crazy schedules, getting sick, getting stressed. Nope. She loves it all which made it hard for us to decide that this was going to be our last play. However, after almost 8 years of plays we decided that our family needs a little down time to let Maylin and Camden explore other interests. So for now, The Wonderful Wizard of Oz was the last play for the Carter household. Of course, I had to take a million pictures for history sakes. That’s just how I roll.

Camden was a munchkin and Jim was a winged monkey. Cam adores his daddy and was so happy to be in a play with him. This was Cam’s first play and he did outstanding!
Camden thought the monkeys were pretty cool. Well, duh. He is a boy who idealizes his dad and everything he does. Let’s be honest, Jim’s a pretty awesome dad and he rocked the monkey costume.
Hmmm. I’m not sure what Cam was thinking there….. He might have been thinking that I had taken enough pictures? Or maybe that Jim had acted like a monkey long enough? Nah.
Maleah was a beautiful Poppy (one of my favorite scenes in the play) and Maylin was a munchkin. Maylin did the most amazing job helping Camden in his first play. She held his hand and led him on and off stage. She even helped him with the choreography and songs while on stage. She was an awesome big sister!

So, just as the play was coming to a close we started the next chapter of our adventures. One of the most exciting parts of April for me was that the barn was built. Yes!!! If you build it, the animals will come. Right? Right! Well, the outside of the barn is completed. Except for the gutters, but the rest is all done on the outside!! Now we have to order the stall doors and fronts and finish the inside. I’m like a kid at Christmas! I’m so excited I can’t sleep some nights. Silly, I know.

The material was delivered and ready to build the barn, but that pesky rain delayed everything.
The barn is up!!
Now, that is my dream barn right there folks! It’s plenty big enough for all kinds of animals!
Just look at those sliding doors on both ends of the barn. Whoo-whee that is going to let in a nice breeze in the summer. My horses are going to love it!

Just after the barn was built, Mr. Moore called us and told us he had completed our grazing plan. We are just rocking and rolling here people! His grazing plan is a 45 page report on the types of grasses and pasture combinations we could have on our farm. It is so in depth and comprehensive that I can’t quite get Jim interested in it yet, but I’m not giving up that easily. The grazing plan is not exactly light reading, but it is very helpful in giving us ideas, goals and even inspiration for our farm. Mr. Moore worked very hard and I am most grateful that he completed our grazing plan before he retired.

We applied back in January for a free seed program to help farmers that had trouble planting grass seed or had pasture damage due to the excessive rain fall we had last year. We were given 2 bags of grass seed and promptly picked it up and planted it. We were very thankful! We were also thankful for all the rain that helped the grass seed to grow so quickly!

Jim’s birthday is always a big deal for him. He usually takes a “movie day”.. and a family day.. and a rest day. So, all in all he gets a really long weekend to do whatever he wants. We love him so we allow it. Ha.

This year was a little different though. He had to have 2 suspicious places removed from his face the day before his birthday. I think it rattled him some and to have 6 stitches in his face definitely rattled his confidence some. He chose to stay home most of the weekend and have us pamper his every whim from the confines of our house. The kids loved it and I think Jim did too. The best part was the results came back benign for both places. That made us all very happy! Of course, took a movie day after the stitches were removed. The guy has to have his movie days, ya know.

We loved spending the weekend with Jim for his birthday! He is the most handsome man I know even with stitches in his face.

The scariest part of April was the fire we had. We had 30-40 mph wind gusts that wouldn’t stop one afternoon. We had trees big and small falling everywhere. I was brushing Desi and a good sized tree fell just a few feet behind the horse trailer. Then Jim pulls up the driveway with the kids and tells me he sees smoke in the pasture. What???

I threw Camden in the truck and told the girls to do their chores. Then I jumped in the truck and Jim headed for his dozer. When I got down there, sure enough the field was on fire. The middle of the field. How does that happen??

At first I was confused, then the wind picked up again and spread the fire about 10 more feet. I realized it didn’t matter how it happened, we were in trouble. I started to head toward the fire with a shovel and realized that Camden was with me. I couldn’t very well take a 4 year old to fight the fire with me. Then I noticed the power line swinging in the wind and sparking more fires every time the wind picked up.

I grabbed my phone and called 911 and then ran to meet Jim so he didn’t run over the power line. He went the long way around the power line and tried to keep the fire from spreading further until the power line ground out.

Within 5 minutes we had over 10 power trucks, 5 fire trucks, multiple first responders, and even a forestry service representative at our place. They turned the power off and then the fire fighters jumped in with water hoses, pick axes and shovels. The forestry service rep showed Jim where to dig trenches to keep the fire from spreading and then how to put it out.

These pictures aren’t the greatest because I was trying to stay out of the way and keep Camden safe. You can see the smoke and some of the first fire trucks to make it into the pasture. Jim was still waiting for them to give him directions.
You can see about half off what burned in this picture. It could have been so much worse.

After about 30 minutes the fire was out and then had Jim continue to doze over the entire acre that burned to prevent it from starting up again. It was hard to watch him bulldoze up an entire acre or grass, even burned grass. But I am thankful it wasn’t more than that.

I am extremely grateful that this is the only damage we had! We will replant the grass and pray that never happens again.

It’s so amazing when God stops you in your tracks and reminds you to be thankful for everything you have. The fire could have spread to dry brush piles at the far end of the field, our neighbors house or even jumped the creek and headed toward our house. The results could have been devastating if Jim hadn’t come home and seen the smoke when he did. God really protected us that day. He also reminded us to be thankful for all that we have. And we truly are thankful today and everyday to be living out our dreams here together!!

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