I can’t believe I married this man

We are under total blizzard white out conditions as of last night, and it doesn’t look like it will stop until Friday. It is so deep that none of our vehicles can pass. We are probably snowed in for a couple of days. Here are some pictures of Scott walking out to feed the horses with three flakes of alfalfa and a bucket of grain. I watched him stumble and have to get back up as he fell through to his hips a couple of times. (Its about 200 yards)

Watching this man exert this kind of strength causes me to get what I call “twitterpated.” Phew.

And not to get too political, but this is the man who provides his children with “privilege” by his hard work and never quit attitude.

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Do you like hanging out with him?

Today the weather was too bad to make it all the way to either Bozeman or Butte, where the two closest Orthodox churches are. So it was a lazy, grey Sunday with Scott and the kids.

And I sometimes wonder, do other wives actually like hanging out with their husbands? I mean, I really enjoy it. The snow is blowing hard and Scott has had to plow the road several times today, just to keep it open for tomorrow. But we did head out to pick up a few things we need and even when we just go into the store for five minutes, I always kind of hope he asks me to come with him just so I can hold his hand.

When we got home. he asked if I wanted to come with him to feed the animals. A ride in the plow/4 wheeler with my husband! Yes! He snapped this one of us when were done.

After that, we came in and the baby needed some love. Scott calls this a “sock feeties” afternoon.

And then, I sat down to do some studying on my laptop and asked him to sit next to me. I draped my leg over his, and he put is hand on my thigh.

I love this, because it reminds me of when we started dating. The previous several days were pretty hectic with all of us going this way and that, so when we have the chance, we like to “reconnect.”

Ladies–what were the things you liked to do with your husband when you were dating? Can you remember them? Does remembering them make you think the same thoughts and have the same feelings you did then? Let your mind wander. I bet your husband will appreciate it.

A momentary break in the action

Pretty soon I figure I will be able to do a post that is not about snow. 

But today is not that day.

The clouds broke for just long enough for me to dig a trench all the way to the bird run. The trench is really for Mychael, because when she sinks into the deep stuff her entire leg gets buried. Sometimes I need to remember that I am seven inches taller than her.

However, as you can see, eight of the next nine days call for more.

And is that a thirteen below I see in there? Yikes.

Anyway, Ljubomir farms had our first baby goat of the “spring” and Kathryn seems to like him.

And in case in you’re wondering, that is indeed a baby, in her swing, holding a baby goat wearing diapers and a fuzzy sweater vest.

Finally, I think my wife looks really cute in nursing scrubs so I snapped a picture of her putting her socks on this morning before she left. If I was ever a patient in the ER where she works I’d be hitting on the nurse.

Time to go get the side barn doors open because the snow from the roof melts, falls down in front of them, re-freezes overnight and makes it impossible to let the animals out without shoveling.

 

 

February accumulation proves to be a little too much

A couple of weeks ago the temperature got down to twenty-two below. This was the first time we had experienced double digit negatives, and here’s the main lesson:

Nothing likes it that low. No animal, no piece of equipment, nothing. Add wind to it and even if there is no NEW snow, the drifted snow is too dense and too high to move with a miniature plow. The wind chill factor was something like forty-five below.

That morning (it was a Monday), I got the little 4wheeler stuck twice trying to move what had blown around. I spent a big portion of the morning digging it out with a snow shovel, just so I could move enough of it to get the vehicles out. During that process, I thought “I wonder if my truck will start?” So, I tried and it almost didn’t. The starter made some really weird noises when I finally got it to turn over. The crunching rattle coming from the 6.0L powerstroke while it tried to warm up was nerve racking. But it fired up and I let it run for about forty-five minutes before trying to move it.

When I finally got some of it moved around I went up stairs to finish getting ready and noticed there was no hot water. There was cold at the kitchen sink (the farthest point from where the water enters the house) but no hot water anywhere. I didn’t have time to deal with it, so I told Mychael I would try to figure out what was going on with it when I got home. She wasn’t going anywhere that day so she could live a few hours without it.

I climbed in the truck and drove off, and the drive from the house all the way to the main road is basically idle–almost not throttle needed. That’s about a mile. When I got on to the main road, I started to throttle up and the more I pushed the pedal, the slower it got. Eventually, it died and I had to limp it over to the side of the road, where it got stuck. I could not get it out, and could not start it. Eventually I got it to turn over, and a neighbor with another super duty pulled me out. But the truck would not go more that about twenty feet and die. I called Mychael who had to put my tow chain in her car and come down to where I was so we could pull it to a safe location and have it towed into town.

The problem? I found out that weekend the difference between “diesel #1” and “diesel #2.” If you have ever wondered what that difference is when you are at the pump, it’s that diesel #1 has a freezing point of about forty below. Diesel #2 freezes (its called “gelling”) at about positive fifteen. Never seen temps like that in Texas. But they are pretty common here. The fuel filter was damaged, and the truck had to be pulled into a warmed garage for about 24 hours before they could even diagnose it. The truck has had a twitchy electrical system for a while, and the batteries were barely holding a charge, so ALL OF THOSE problems compounded and needed total replacement. In the end, I got:

New fuel filters, new fuel pressure regulator, two new batteries, new starter (I burned it up that morning trying to force it to start), new alternator (my intermittent blinking headlights became much worse once they got it started), new battery cables (all four were fraying and falling apart), and new power cord for my block heater. The total was about $1600 to get it road worthy and reliable again. Now she runs better than ever.  Solution? Run diesel #1 (which is way more refined and expensive) from about November to March. Here she sits next to her pal, the Honda Pioneer 1000 that plows us out in a rare non-blizzard, non-gale force wind moment from the bedroom window.

That road in the background is our access easement to the main road, and I have to plow it every day.

I wanted to live here, in these conditions, in this place. I am not complaining.

Next, the hot water problem. I got home that night and started to investigate. But in the mean time, I had contacted the builder who looked at the original plans and plumbing diagrams to give me some ideas about what went wrong. He suggested that somewhere between the toilet and the bathroom sink was the freeze. He said we needed to get the temp in the back bedroom and bathroom up by cranking up the heat in those rooms, opening up the closet (where the water heater is) and getting some heat in there. Here’s what it looked like:

That was all fine, but why did it happen? It’s a brand new house. So I investigated further and found that the hole in the wall where the power enters the house (located in the subfloor of the bathroom) is WAY bigger than the cable that goes in. So, I jammed a towel in there until I can get some expanding foam insulation.

Within an hour of plugging that hole, the hot water came back. And since we have pex pipe, it did not rupture. No permanent damage.

The builder said the guy I hired to do the electrical should have plugged that hole. No shit.

It was my oldest boys sixth birthday yesterday. Here he is with his mom handing him his presents:

And speaking of Mychael, here’a a little girl game tip for the ladies. There has been a lot of talk over at the Dalrock site about who is and who is not suitable or elite enough for modern marriage. Or what is game. Or…

The latest post is a wellspring of conversation on the topic.

I don’t know how elite I am, but sometimes I get pics like this from her:

That’t not a pregnancy test, its an ovulation test. Full disclosure–we are NOT TRYING to have another one. In fact, we bought this thing at the store a couple days ago as a joke. She’s 45 and I’m 47, so we are pretty sure those days are over. But she thought it would be cute to send it as a flirty way to say “want to have some fun later?” The smiley face means “peak” so who knows? But it was pretty creative.

She also picks my clothes out for me for work:

She says its not because I can’t pick out my own outfits, but because she likes to do it.

Now, for the married women who read here. Set aside everything you think you know about “headship” and “servant leaders” and what you believe you deserve or whatever. How hard is it to be sweet like that? How hard is it to flirt and make your husband feel like he’s a hundred feet tall? If you have to pull teeth to remind yourself that he’s supposedly the love of your life, is it possible the problem is you?

I’m not some super catch. My wife just knows instinctively that keeping the fire going requires her to light the match once in a while too.  Or maybe she’s grateful that I’m the one who goes outside and fights the double digit negative temperatures to keep her comfortable and safe.