September 8, 2008

New Babies and New Changes

My dear friends in Florence, KY have a new baby in their house. Little Rachel Grace arrived early in the morning on August 28. She is such a doll! Angela is doing fine, and she and Greg are both very happy. Who wouldn't be! Too see more pictures of Rachel, you can visit their blog at http://gregandangela.blogspot.com/
I think their blog is neat because Greg and Angela do it together. They both post things on it, which you don't see that often. They are such a sweet family!

Now on to other new arrivals!

While we were home, I of course did not miss the opportunity to go visit the horses. My main intent was to meet and greet our new little filly, born just a week before we came home. Here she is, at about two weeks old. I believe she is probably going to be a nice roan, and hopefully will look a lot like her big brother, Joe. This is Carrie's 2008 foal, Della.She wasn't sure what to think of me and Malcolm. She sure is a high headed little thing! Every time I drive by and see her, she's got her neck straight up and her head way up in the air. She'll not miss out on anything! She's going to see it ALL!

Those are the two new babies in my world. Two sweet little girls! August was a month for girls I guess.

And since I'm on the topic of my horses, which I never tire of, I'll have to go ahead and brag on the others too.
Della, being born a month of more after the other colts, looks so tiny compared to the bigger kids. Its amazing how fast they grow!
Remember this little guy?

What a difference a few weeks makes. Here he is about 6 weeks later. He has shed out his baby fuzz and now you can see he really is going to be a nice blue roan like his brother Reb.

Speaking of Reb, he and Joe are enjoying the whole pasture to themselves. Actually they would prefer to be in with the other horses, but no such luck. Neither of them have been gelded yet, and the studs in with the mares, so I don't want to get them in trouble. They are both getting fat on all that grass.

Other Changes:

After much frustrating and confusing disussion, mulling over, praying, and floundering over what to do, Malcolm and I have made the decision to move closer to Billings, MT. We've toyed with the idea for almost a year now. We love being at the ranch and near his family, and that was the big debate. This has been a really difficult decision to make. However, when it comes down to it, the facts are everything we need for trucking is in Billings, which means anytime we need something we have to drive 4 hours from home to get it, or to have the truck worked on, etc. In addition, both of us are tired of being gone so much, and unfortunatly, the ranch is so remote, its really difficult to get back there frequently, and yet still be at our maximum profit level. Which leads to the other change in our life...

...we've decided to leave the grain hauling off for now, maybe permanently, and return to Steve Nelson Trucking, which is the company we were driving for up until March when we bought our hopper trailer. Driving for Nelson, we were in Billings twice a week or more, often for several hours, and frequently over night. If we move there, we can go home during that time instead of sitting in the parking lot. SO...as sad as it is to leave the ranch, it just makes more sense to do it this way right now. We both hope that we will return to the ranch one day. Time will tell.

A benefit to working for Nelson again, is not just getting home more, but we get to haul cows again, which we both really enjoyed. In fact we're sitting in Wyoming right now waiting to load and I cant' believe I have a signal but actually its working really fast! Seriously, I can see NO human evidence, other than the road and a fence next to us. We're talking complete isolation. So don't ask me why the internet is working so well.

We had looked at properties near Billings last winter, but never found anything we liked. Our criteria is that it must have a shop that the truck fits into, or it must have acreage and be affordable so that we can build a shop for the truck. Also, we wanted room for me to have a horse there as well. This time, looking at properties we found two that worked. The first one we made an offer on refused to negotiate, and he was asking too much for what it was. But thats ok, because I liked the other place better, and we got it at a steal because the owners are in a hurry to move! Yea!

We're supposed to close on the 30th of this month. Its a log house on 9.95 acres on the north side of Shepherd, which is about 25 miles from Billings. Its already fenced for horses, so Reb and Della can come with me, when she's old enough, and it has a really huge shop thats concreted. The present owner is a truck driver also, and so he had the shop built to fit his needs as a driver. How convenient for us! Its in a "community" of properties that are all 10-20 acres, with log houses (mostly) and the way they are deeded, they can't be broken down any smaller than 20 acres. In other words, no one can put a trailer park in next to us or sub-divide it either, which is pretty common in Shepherd. So that's a big attraction. Its definatly not the ranch, but if we have to live in town, it will do. I'll get some pictures posted eventually when I get them.

The house has a great floor plan. Upstairs is the master bedroom and bath, as well as a "sitting room" that is open to the main level below. Its going to be my library. The main level of the house has two guests rooms and a bath, and then the kitchen, dining area, and a sitting room area are all open to one another. And there is a wood burning stove in the living room. Then there is a basement that was finished last year that has a huge laundry room, a half bath, and a really large living room. You'll have to come take the tour.

The other good part of it is, I'm now only 30 minutes from the air port. Makes it easier for all of you to visit. Also, we're two hours from Yellowstone, 1 hour from Little Big Horn, and Billings has quite a bit to offer. Shepherd is situated in a way that if you go a few miles east, your in Montana's grasslands, and if you go a few miles west, your in Montana's mountains. So there's lots to do and see, and I'm still looking forward to showing you all around.

Thats the news with us. A lot happened in the last two weeks as you can see. I decided rather than stretch it out over several posts, I'd just dump it all into one. Hope I havn't kept you away from more important things for too long.


Meagan said...

I gotta come back and read more, but both babies are beautiful! The horse pictures look great, and I am happy for you and your new house!!!! I'll be back to read through more carefully and to read the post prior to this one, but for now I am hitting the sheets! Love you!

Meagan said...

Okay, I was back to read more! I am excited for you and your new house!!! I can't wait to see it! Does this mean teaching is in your future?

The Allens said...

I can not wait to see pictures of the house!!! By the way I mailed something to your address in Baker last week.