Saturday, August 14, 2010

I'm Dreaming of a White Christmas

I know it's still August, and here in So Cal, it's still unbearably hot, but I've got my mind set on Christmas.  Not because I want this or this (although, Labor Day is coming up - hint hint), but because I'll be purchasing plane tickets for all six of us - The Hubs, myself, Bug, Bunny, Glamour Girl & Lone Wolf - to visit my grandparent's - now my parent's - farm in po-dunk no-where East Texas, here in a few days.  (Wow, I'm betting that was a run on sentence).

I spent most of my summer's growing up at my grandparent's farm with my cousins.  How my grandmother managed to put up with all of us for an entire summer is beyond me.  She had the patience of a Saint, is all I can say.  We got to roam the property making shoot 'em up games with pretend guns we made of sticks.  We fed the chickens scraps of leftovers and collected eggs.  We got to go fish and yes, swim at the various ponds around the property.  We watched the cows mosey across the fields and adored the little calves.  I even have some photos of some of us riding some very, very, tame bulls.  We also used the cow movers as jungle gyms.  Cows don't use a bathroom, so you do the math there.  I don't know who thought that was a fine idea, but the thought of our little hands and bodies swinging around on bars covered with cow dung, makes me a little ill today.

I have so many good memories of the farm, of growing up, of respect for my elders, of Dr. Pepper and week long church revivals.  Of Sunday dresses and white shoes and bubble gum before church and fried chicken and deviled eggs after.  Of my grandfather harvesting his "little" garden and us shucking corn and black eyed peas for weeks and weeks.  Of fresh off the vine tomatoes with sugar and watermelon with salt. Of thunder storms that would roll in across the fields and the amazing rainbows they left behind.  Of fireflies, frogs, box turtles and yes, even fire ants.  The farm is such a huge part of my life, and I'm hoping to carry on the tradition of farm summers for my kids.  All my kids, even the big ones who won't ever truly experience a farm summer the way they should.  They'll all love the farm if it's the last thing I do!  And so far, so good.  My folks have even offered to have the little kids stay the summer when they're a bit older.  Lord help them, they have no idea what they're getting into!

For now though, I'm dreaming of Christmas when I can bring my family to the farm for a two week vacation.  There are only a few cows now (and only one bull who I'll have to see if he's gentle enough to get some photos with the kids) and no chickens.  There might still be a cow mover though if the kids are interested, and if my stomach can stand it.  There is definitely love and respect though.  And Sunday dresses and fried chicken.

I'm counting down the days.

Seriously.. Thoughts?

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