Sunday, March 31, 2013

He Is Risen!

He is risen indeed!

Spring is always filled with new promise and potential just like every new day is filled with hope becasue of Jesus Christ.

A Happy Easter to one and all!

The night before Easter everyone puts a pair of
  shoes out so the Easter Bunny can leave
an egg in them.  Track spikes even work.
Not sure why the old rabbit does this but he has
been doing this as long as I can remember.

Me and my boys

You just never know where that old rabbit with leave
an egg or basket.

You're never too old for an Easter baskest around here.

#3 giving me his "old person" look.
I'm not sure where he picked this up.
And still looking for Easter eggs.


Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Maybe Spring is Coming!

I have just about given up on spring showing up this year but today the sun is out and the birds are chirping.  In fact, I saw my first robin. 

With all the adverse weather we have been dealt we are behind schedule delivering seed to customers.  So, today is a great day to get some loads out of the seed warehouse. 

Nick strapping down seed pallets.

Nick is much better at getting the latch for the straps going to tighten
down the pallets.  I stick to counting bags and writing up
delivery tickets. 

While Joe, Nick and I concentrate of seed today, Derk and Travis are working on removing sensors from the combine corn head.

It's great to be able to finally get outside and do something without freezing our tails!

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

The First Day of Spring

I really hope that the first day of summer is warmer than the first day of spring.   This is a picture of the car thermometer on the way home from taking son #1 to piano lessons this morning.

I know warmer weather is right around the corner but I would prefer it would be sooner than later.  

Monday, school let out early due to snow and strong winds.  It was a good call as the roads went from normal  winter driving to ice/snow covered in a matter of minutes.  I guess I'm still a kid at heart because early outs are still fun for me.  It gives that kids an opportunity to get homework done sooner during the day, get a few more chores and work done outside, and still have time for a great family supper and a family game in the evening as there aren't any evening school activities. 

There were halibut fillets in the freezer just waiting for an evening when we would have time to actually enjoy them.  So, Monday was the evening.  One thing Joe and I learned while living in Minnesota was that grilling season starts January 1st and ends December 31st.  It may take a little more time for the grill to warm up in the winter but it is well worth it. 

Unfortunately I cannot remember where I found this recipe for grilled halibut but four out of five Shirbrouns deemed it good. 

Barbecue Halibut
     2 Tbsp Butter
     2 Tbsp Brown sugar
     2 Cloves Garlic
     1 Tbsp Lemon juice
     1 Tbsp Soy sauce
     1/2 tsp Black pepper
     Halibut steaks or fillets

Preheat grill for medium-high heat.

Place butter, brown sugar, garlic, lemon juice, soy sauce, and pepper in a small saucepan.  Warm over medium heat , stirring occasionally, until sugar is dissolved.

Oil grill grate.  Brush fish with brown sugar sauce, and place on grill. 

Cook for 5 minutes per side, or until fish can be easily flaked with a fork, basting with sauce.  Enjoy!

I think would be a great sauce for salmon as well.

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Happy Ag Day!

Here are some interesting stats that are great food for thought.

Thank you to all the farmers out there but also a BIG thank you to the farmers' support network.  This support network would include the bankers who finance a farmers input investments, animal feed suppliers, veterinarians who help keep the farm animals healthy, fertilizer and chemical suppliers who keep the farmers planting in the spring and summer, seed companies who breed and produce the farmers seed, the fuel suppliers who keep the farmers rolling all year round, the marketing advisers who help farmers market their crops, the individuals that work in the processing and packing plants who process the farmers products for the US consumers and world customers, the grain handlers at local elevators, barge terminals and at ocean ports who move the farmers grain safely and efficiently, the truckers who haul all of the above mentioned plus more, and the ag journalists who keep farmers informed on the latest information effecting agriculture.

I know I have left many people out of my list but you get the idea and there are A LOT of people who make agriculture in the United States the best in the world!

Until next time,

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

The Winter So Far

Typically the months of January, February, and part of March are meeting months.  Joe and I attend meetings the learn about crop insurance, crop inputs like fertilizer and crop protection products, marketing our crops, as well as new technologies.  But this winter January, February, and March so far have been the months of meetings AND snow days.  I'm pretty sure the boys have not had a full week of school since before Christmas. 

With the regular snow storms showing up like clock work the boys have been keeping their rooms pretty tidy and the piano practiced.  But, Mom isn't keeping up with all of her work with extra bodies roaming the house and farm during the week days. (I had to throw in a third person sentence in for Joe)  Yesterday was one of those days.  School was called off for yet another snow storm.  While it was a nice snow in the fact that it did not blow around and the snow plow guys did a great job of keeping up it, winter is getting old. 

So here are some pictures of what we did during yet another snow day:

I'm pretty sure #1 son spent the entire day picking out
and designing his class ring.  It doesn't seem possible
the my little guy should be old enough to order a class ring.

#2 building a barge with Legos (I think he was told
to pick up Legos if I remember correctly)
I made a poppy seed cake from scratch that was darn good if I don't say so myself.  Poppy seed muffins are Joe's favorite, however, not yesterday as the cake was in a 9x13 pan instead of little cupcake papers.

Here is the conversation.  I'm in red and Joe is blue: 
"So, how do you like the cake?"  "It's not bad."  "So, what's wrong with it?"  "Nothing.  Why do you ask?"  "Well, you said not bad which means not good.  So what's wrong with it?"  "Well usually you make this in the little round cupcake papers."  "This is more environmentally friendly."  "I like the little round cupcakes."  "It's faster to make a cake in a pan than messing around with cupcake papers and tin."  "So what did you do this morning?"  A long pause.  "If I ever decide to make poppy seed cake again and put it in cupcake papers will it taste better?"  "I think so."

Thus, ended lunch conversation between Joe and I.

#3 coloring Shrinky Dinks
Joe moving snow


Waiting on those Shrinky Dinks


Friday, March 1, 2013

Plans For the Weekend?

So, what are your plans for the weekend?  Looking for something to do?  Has cabin fever set in?

Well, back by popular demand is the Clayton County 4H Foundation Casino Night! 

The 4-H Foundation provides financial resources for youth development through 4-H. We provide the financial resources to develop and deliver quality 4-H youth programs throughout Clayton County. These opportunities help young people enhance their ability to use critical thinking, leadership, communication, and social skills – tools that will give them a competitive edge in their future endeavors.

An example of the Foundation's funding is the Clayton County Crops Team.  It takes about $300 to fit the team members with reference books, materials, and equipment just so they can study and learn about the world of agronomy.   Then add contest entrance fees and travel expenses for eight 4Hers and a couple of coaches and this becomes an expensive endevor.  But, how better can a young person learn about the exciting field of plant science and get hands on experience?

After the floods of 2008, the City of Garber built an amazing Community Center.  This Saturday evening, March 2nd, Garber is hosting a delicious pork loin meal with all the trimmings from 7 to 8 pm and then a fun evening of gaming and fellowship all to support the 4H Foundation and youth of Clayton County, at the Community Center. 

Clayton County Iowa has a rich 4H history.  If you were ever in 4H, have family in 4H, or just want something to do Saturday evening come on over to Garber, Iowa, and support Clayton County 4H!