Mark's sister and her family drove all the way from Northern Wisconsin to the hills of middle Tennessee. 16 hour drive! They happen to work full time at a camp called "Honey Rock". They stayed in one of our cabins, our rustic cabins. First off, they had to brave the tiny metal bridge that passes the creek each time they had to use our restroom. Flashlights were needed for this operation because the little pass over the creek is quite narrow and if you miss the walk, you are in the creek!
They got to test out the cabin with their children. It has a full bed type bunk in there. First night I asked, "So how is the cabin?" They said, "Really nice! But the rooster!" The rooster was crowing all night that night, probably because he saw their flashlights and thought maybe the rays of a new morning we setting in.
Mark said he was going to shoot the one rooster! Everyone gasps! "We have two roosters, ONE too many! They compete with each other. When one crows, the other follows!" He said as he held their attention! I intervened, "Couldn't we just give him to someone?" My husband is a softy. He agreed to not go out and shoot that naughty rooster that day and that rooster is crowing right now as I am writing this post! And the two roosters are competing. It has been months of this, just to give you an idea of my husbands patience.
We are getting a ton of eggs. It was great when we had the visitors because we could make some big farm fresh breakfasts each morning at the crack of dawn. I was in my element, apron tied around my waist, brewing tea and coffee while cracking eggs as the wood stove was piping its glorious heat. The hint of campfire lingers in the room giving you that pioneer feel! Oh, and fresh breakfast sausage! Can't forget that! Since we just slaughtered our hogs, fresh sausage was on the menu mixed with the eggs. We topped it all off with a big yogurt smoothie and I tell you, there was not a crumb left! And if there was, I can tell you that it would not go to waste for we have plenty animals that appreciate our table scraps!
Mark and I are made for running a camp! Just having meals to plan and activities each day just thrills our hearts to no end! We got to practice on our family this time around, but it was a success. They had a great time and enjoyed the farm fresh meals three times a day! Mostly everything that we grew on the farm! With our own hands!
When the sun slowly peeked from the clouds, Mark motioned to the boys to hike up the side of the mountain out back where the water flows from! I took the gals on a different adventure because we didn't all have our hiking boots nor did we want to brave the steep incline. We took a hike on a more gentler slope on the other side of the valley, my special new favorite walk. It all became special to me when my husband would take me there each day to visit our cattle on the hill. Hand in hand we would pet them and they would follow us like a band of puppies.
So up we climbed. The group of girls. When Molly and Megan come with me, we always put a gate in between us and the cattle because we just don't want the cattle following us. It can be a little intimidating! So, we started up with no regard to where the cattle were, which was not a problem. We all picked up a stick and began the journey not knowing if we would meet them on top of the ridge. Oh, our ignorance was bliss! We marveled at all the beautiful views!
The time came that we were all ready to make the trek home down the incline and through the top pasture. The beasts were gone! We saw them picking around in the woods so we took our opportunity to make our way down the hill. I told them to be quiet because the cattle will hear us and want to follow us as they always do. So far so good, we made it to the pond and it seemed like we were going to make it without alarming them. BUT, they saw us and started the stampede in our direction!!! I started to run because I was not sure if the beasts could stop on a dime or what if they plowed us down in the process?
Anne said, "When the homestead lady starts running, there has to be problem!" They all started screaming as the cattle came down the hill, the three, in our direction. We found an old cedar and I told them all to hug the tree as I stood at the base with my stick. The little girls were crying and all of our hearts were pounding! The beasts just plowed past down the rest of the incline in our tracks. Then I noticed my husband was whistling, calling them down. He had no idea we were up the incline and the cattle were just obeying their master. Oh, we had such a fright! When we stammered and told the Mark and Scott the story of the killer cows, they buckled over with laughter! Mark was like, "You are afraid of these gentle creatures?" I said, "No, but if they are running in my direction, I am not going to stand in their way, they are a lot bigger than us!"
Wow, that was an exciting time! We talked and laughed about that adventure all evening as the sun went down and the flashlights starting shining their way back over the creek! And then the rooster crowed!