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 want to be a belly dancer when I grow up.

This video makes me all kinds of happy.  I think Clay and I have watched it 162,000,000 times.  We’ve memorized the moves to the best of our abilities and I’m sure that there is a belly dancer somewhere deep inside my soul.  Oh, and the soccer players aren’t so bad either.

Fast Tube by Casper

Summer Recap


This has been a fun summer.  We started it off with going with my extended family to Branson for a weekend.  My favorite part of the weekend was going to the lake.  We took turns driving the kids around on the wave runner.  Clay spent so much time bouncing around on it that the netting in his swimsuit chaffed his butt.  His was relieved when we got home and found we still have baby butt cream in the cabinet.


I took my mom out for a spin and yes, she’s wearing a shirt on her head because she couldn’t find a hat.  My mom is very resourceful and slightly goofy.  She only had to yell at me to slow down a few times.  My mom also rode on the tube with one of my nephews, she was having a lot of fun.  Can you see my farmer’s tan?  I can’t help it, I do that every year.  I can never wear tank tops or cute sundresses because I have that stupid tan.


The glowing white figure out there is me skiing.  I don’t think I’ve water skied for about ten years.  My kids were pretty amazed that I could do that.  I told them not to be overly impressed because….


I was bound to crash.  And I did.


On our way home we stopped at the famous Lambert’s, home of the throwed rolls.  Yes, that’s what they say…throwed.  They come out with piping hot rolls and throw them at you.  I don’t know why that sounds so fun, but my kids could hardly wait to eat there.  That plate full of nursing home food is what I ordered.  It tasted about as good as it looks.  I don’t know many restaurants that still decorate their plates with kale and a spiced apple ring.   I ate a lot of rolls.


We had a very impromptu party at our house for the 4th of July.  I think unplanned parties always turn out to be the best.  My friend’s husband is a nurse and was working, so we told her to bring all the kids out to shoot off fireworks. That’s Poodle smiling with Ellen.  Do you remember me telling you about her?   She hates poodles, she’d rather be called a Yorkie.  So, I’m changing her name to Pug…just to annoy her.  Pug has six children.  I know, you hate her now, don’t you?  Stinkin’ gym addict.

We love hanging out with her family because her kids line up with mine and it doesn’t hurt that they’re a lot of fun.


These two are our babies.  They’ll be in Kindergarten together.


These two will be in 3rd grade together.


Our oldest two will be Juniors this year.


Then we have the stair steps the two girls on the left and Seth.  They’ll be in 8th, 9th and 10th grades this year.  Pug has another son that managed not to get in any of my photos, he’ll be in 6th grade, he’s also the child they accidentally leave behind at school, church and restaurants.

We’ve had a lot of fun with them all summer.


This is Bryan and Melanie, they came to visit Coal Creek Farm for a few days.  They were our neighbors when we lived in TBLDBT back in Missouri.  I love them.  It makes me so happy when they travel out to see us.  I still swear that Bryan is my littler bothah from anothah mothah.  He reminds me so much of my dad it’s scary sometimes and Melanie is, well…she’s my favorite.  She is my confidant.  She’s my friend that allows me to rant, rave, complain, cry and laugh hysterically all in the span of ten minutes and she still wants to be my friend.


We took them to the Farmer’s Market to eat breakfast on a curb.


That’s how generous we are to our friends.  Come visit us, we’ll take you to the curb to eat.


This is Bryan and Melanie’s baby.  He is so stinking cute and ornery and I love him.  We had such a wonderful visit with them.


Oh, and we saw this guy at the market.  You just never know when you might need a superhero, especially one that drinks coffee.

I hope all of you have had some fun this summer.

A view from Hell or Part II of my trip to the dentist.

My dentist asked me, “Okay, so watermelon, cherry, bubblegum, mint or cookie dough?’

“For what?” I asked her.

“I’m going to put a little topical on your gums before I give you the shots and the flavors are watermelon, cherry, bubblegum, mint or cookie dough.”

“Oh, gag…okay, mint I guess.”  Who in Hell, and I meant that quite seriously, who in HELL wants the flavor cookie dough?  I was pondering this awful flavor choice when the minty swab was stuck in my mouth.

And then I swallowed the minty stuff  went down my throat and I was instantly sorry, for the taste and the icy hot feeling that followed was a bit like I’d licked a jar of Ben-gay.  And then, my throat was numb.

My dentist pulled out the minty stick and came at me with a large metal syringe dripping with a clear solution.  “Oh, uh, I’m not quite numb enough.”  I said quickly, “I think I need some more time.”  I’m not one to intervene with medical treatments, but I was seriously not ready for that needle.

“Oh, this won’t be bad, and this will get you nice and numb.”  She said pulling back my cheek, “Just a little prick here and here…and one right here under your tongue.”

That’s when the tears started to stream out of my eyes and tunnel through all the curves of my ears.  But, she was done and I thought, okay I made it, not bad, deep breath, I’m okay, I can do this…..

“April, we’ll just give that a minute or two…”

Oh, thank God, I had time to close my eyes and find a happy place.  Let’s see…the, no, the farm just makes me think of all the projects that we don’t have finished right now…um, a vacation, somewhere really pretty, with a lot of flowers, yes flowers and maybe a sweet little Inn with crisp white curtains billowing out of the second story windows and …I felt the cotton being pushed down in my mouth, still in my happy place,  the drilling began…OW!

“Okay, April we’ll try this anesthetic, it will last about two hours, I’ll go a bit deeper.”

I opened my eyes to see another huge metal syringe coming toward my mouth.  This time she poked the needle in my mouth asking if I could feel it and when I finally felt it she plunged it deeper and held it there a few seconds.  I brought  my knees toward my stomach, raised my feet in the air and held my hands up in surrender.  I was frozen like a dead armadillo on the side of the highway.  My happy place was gone, the flowers, the cute Inn with the billowy curtains…gone.

Now just repeat that entire scene two more times because that’s how many different anesthetics it took to finally get me numb enough for her to work on my teeth.  And the final drug she injected would last around eight hours.




Repeat shots.





I lost count after about 10 shots and my dentist made the proclamation that I’m hard to numb, but was trying to use as few shots as possible given my reaction to the uh, the uh…shots.

When the shots were done, the drilling, gagging and sore jaw began.

For two hours with a couple of five minute breaks I sat in Hell’s chair with my mouth open to Satan and her little helper.

When we were done the technician told me I’d look a bit funny until the medicine wore off.  She tried to make my next appointment to come in to have the permanent crown, but I said…”You’re very thweet, but I don’t wanna thee you for a very long thime.”   She laughed and said, “Okay, I’ll call you.”

I got in my van and called Clay, “Uhnay, I juth goth outh of the denith offith…it wath HELL!  I’m a meth!  It wath tho thcary!  I with you wath there!”

“April?  Is that you?  I can’t understand a word you’re saying.”

When I got home my children had a great time laughing at me trying to talk and then yell at them.  I was alternating between being irritated and laughing hysterically because I had absolutely no control over the muscles on the left side of my face.  It looked as if I had suffered a stroke.  I was so glad to be done with that appointment.

Guess what?  A few hours later, I had to take my son in to have the dentist work on a tooth.  Talk about bad timing.  As we drove back to the office I felt like I was chewing on the inside of my cheek every time I bit down.  A quick glance in the rear view mirror showed me that it was a big wad of  bloody cotton hanging out of my mouth that I didn’t know was there.  That was lovely.  My son looked at me in horror and asked, “Did that just come out of your mouth?!”  ”

“Yeth…I did’n know ith wath in there.”


“The cothen, I did’n know ith wath in there.”


“Ugh…never mind.”

“Mom.  Did you know that cotton was in your mouth?”

“Sthop athking me quethions!”


That’s what the entire afternoon was like with my kids.  They were having a lot of fun with me.  I wanted to strangle them, but they kept making me laugh because they were making fun of me.

I finally went to my room to hide and take a nap.  I woke up in a pool of drool.

Three weeks later the technician called me to please come back for the permanent crown.  I told her, “I think I’m okay with this silver thing you gave me.”

“April, I promise it won’t hurt and it’s really quick.”

I didn’t believer her, but I agreed anyway.  I’m surprised I went, because I was a really nervous about what they were going to do.  But, she was right, it didn’t hurt and it was quick.   I told my dentist, “You’ve been redeemed!”  She looked and me and said, “Oh, good!  We’ll see you in six months!” I looked at her and smiled and in my head said,”The Hell if you will!”