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The Living Without Series

This is a series of posts that I wrote back in 2006 on living with less stuff. Check them out: liv011Living #2liv031liv04

Coal Creek Farm on Facebook

The Chicken Doctor


The Architect



I have an uncle that’s a hillbilly. Seriously. He lives out in the middle of nowhere on a hill. He and his wife came to Thanksgiving this year. Uncle Hillbilly is the baby brother of my mom. He’s eleven years younger than my mom, the same age difference between my daughter and her baby brother. This little fact causes my mom to say things like,”Poor Ellen, I know just how she feels having to take care of her baby brother while her mom is sick and not able to cope with life.”   Then I have to remind my mom that I’m quite healthy and Ellen is at school all day, not caring for anyone. Still, every time I ask Ellen to do something for her little brother when Mom is around they give each other a knowing glance that will forever bond them together as “The Oldest Children Deprived of Happiness.”
Uncle Hillbilly has defeated death 8.95 times.  He’s a ticking time bomb.  He’s been in three horrible automobile accidents, he’s had cancer in which he had a kidney removed, he’s broken countless bones and he’s been in the army.  Any of these incidents would have been the demise of a less stellar human being. 
His little, itty-bitty, blond headed, wife is a hoot.  Her choice of vehicle is a Harley Davidson with a side car painted bright pink…..I mean Pink Panther Pink.  She used to live in my town and is an avid auction attendee.  She told me of a town not far from here with a large Amish community that has a weekly auction.  Every Tuesday morning they auction baked goods, produce, eggs, livestock, farm equipment, quilts and apparently a lot of stuff that I should not be living without, so I’ll be making that trip sometime soon, I hope.  

Now, about the puzzle.  Charles Wysocki has been my choice of puzzle art for the past several years.  I buy them at Target every winter and the puzzles I choose usually have an old town scene.  We love to have a puzzle going whenever my folks are visiting during the holidays.  It’s fun for everyone to go sit, talk and put a puzzle together.  Often we find ourselves fighting over who gets to do the barn or the cute house or the horses.  Sometimes my little boy will walk off with a piece that will cause us to search the table endlessly for something that is actually wedged between the couch cushions.  My kids always want to place the last piece.  This year I had to count to three, several times before they would place their piece in to finish the gall-darn puzzle.  They were so afraid that they wouldn’t get to put them in at the same time, so they kept faking to put the pieces in.  Then I had to count to ten so I wouldn’t bash their heads together.  Okay, the part when I said it’s fun, forget that, putting a puzzle together is an exercise in self-control.  
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