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


3 Amigos, Sushi, Ballroom Dancing, and Damn Ramsey in that order.


This is Clay laughing at Gary and the dude on the end that you can’t see is Todd.  You can read more about these three amigos in Clay’s Life.

Clay and Gary have known each other since second grade, they lived across the street from each other when they were children.  When they’re together the laughter never stops.  Gary is one of the funniest human beings I’ve ever met.  When we visited St. Louis we spent one evening hanging out at Gary’s house.

Todd came over with his wife and three boys too.  Todd, Gary and Clay have known each other since 7th grade.  These three friends may go long stretches without seeing each other, but they keep in touch via email and occasionally we get to see them.

While they talked and laughed, Levi slept on my lap which is the excuse I’m going to use for all the sucky photos, but I’m sure you all know that’s a big fat lie.  So, day one of St. Louis came to an end, but the fun was only beginning.

The second day we were in St. Louis, Melanie (who had broken her foot the day before, but was swearing that it was just a bad sprang) and I went shopping.  I love shopping with Melanie because she’s my friend that knows all the cheap places.  I bought Ellen a bike for $25 at Goodwill and a wool rug for $15 then we went to the $1 jewelry store and I spent a whopping $10 on bracelets, earrings, necklaces, and hair clips.  It was a fun day.

That night we met a group of old friends for sushi in downtown St. Louis.  I’ve eaten sushi before, but I’ve never gone out to eat just sushi.  This was one of my all time favorite meals and it was priced well at around $8 a roll.  Clay and I tried to re-live it on our anniversary a few weeks ago and we were so disappointed, the St. Louis sushi was supreme, the Kansas sushi…not so much.



After dinner we headed to the Casa Loma Ballroom where Clay and Richard took this rather awkward photo before going in and setting fire to the dance floor with their fancy-prancy feet.

This is Richard with his wife Anne.  If they could teach the whole world to two-step like they do, the world would be a much happier place.

Clay took Melanie and her broken foot out on the floor.  She wore wedged flip flops, danced, shopped and walked around the city….WITH A BROKEN FOOT!  She danced one dance and then sat and drank beer the rest of the time.

We all danced the night away and were mighty hungry and thirsty when we headed back to the country, so I begged Bryan, who was driving, to stop somewhere.  We finally stopped at Krispy Kreme and the four of us aet all but 2 of the dozen donuts we ordered.  I felt like I was in college again going on a midnight donut run.

The next day we got up and went to church and then had lunch at Richard and Anne’s home.  Bryan and Melanie came along too.  Guess what the topic of conversation was?

And yes, I had to post this photo of Melanie because she always looks way too cute in all the other photos I take of her.

Did you guess?  Did you say DAVE RAMSEY!  Yep, we talked about Damn Ramsey, as I like to say.  Richard, Ann, Bryan and Melanie are hosting a class this fall.  Every one of us has been through the Financial Peace class.   If you don’t know what I’m talking about check out Dave’s site.

If you’ve taken the class and are” living like no one else so that later you can live like no one else” then you know EXACTLY why I call him DAMN Ramsey!

Are you getting tired of all my, “We went to St.Louis over a month ago” posts?  I think I have one more and then I AM DONE!

What can I say?  I’m not very organized when it comes to this blog….or anything else at the moment.  However, I did clean out our little office a couple days ago and it is like living in Paradise.  I won’t let any of my children enter it.  The room is MINE!  It’s full of coupons at the moment, but it’s still organized.

Okay, line up all your chickens and give them a big hug and peck for me!




A Peacful Moment

Last month we met our friends in Missouri at another friend’s cabin for the weekend.  It was such a beautiful, peaceful weekend.  I wanted to stay forever.

We drove through Tipton, Missouri where we stopped at this bulk food store run by the Dutch Amish.  It was a great little place.  I want to go back right now and buy one of the  porch swings they were selling outside.

Rows of candy.  All the colors of the rainbow, like we died and went to candy Heaven.

All the flour a person could ever need.

I still don’t know what those big green balls are, but my family liked saying, “There’s a bag of big, green balls!” and then they died laughing.  I have to apologize for them a lot.  Sorry, Dutch Amish store people.

This collection of spices fascinated me.  I wanted to open all the tubs and sniff them to see if they would make me sneeze or gag or say, “YUM!”  I found a 3 gallon tub of cinnamon and seriously thought about bringing it home, because running out of cinnamon is a crime in my house.  But, I didn’t…I will probably regret it next week when we’re out of cinnamon…again.

Do you want cheese with that?  How about some cheese?  Say, cheeeeese!

We bought an apple pie and a cherry pie…..and they were so…….awful.  I’m serious.  I was so surprised, they used canned filling.  That’s just not a good pie people.  No.  No canned filling.  Ick.

Checking out with our pies, sausage, cheese and candy…of course we had to buy candy.

And then we drove to this little spot and had the most glorious weekend.

I want a horse!

We visited Hannibal Missouri on our vacation. Taking a twenty minute tour in a horse drawn wagon was my favorite part. When I see a horse I immediately want to be friends. I neeeeeed to touch its soft mouth and gaze into its eyes. I know they all love me because they whisk their tales around when they see me and they only do that to people they love. If it weren’t for my parents I would have had one billion-gazillion-tillionlillion horses in my backyard. I asked for a horse for Christmas and my birthday for at least ten years and my mom would get me a stuffed horse or a porcelain horse or a plastic horse. I know she wasn’t dumb, but I sure thought they knew what I meant when I said, “I want a horse”. I never got a horse, it’s a deep wound, but I think I’ll live.
Here’s the very arthritic-joke-telling driver. He was sweet and cute and told terrible jokes like; Which side of the horse has more hair? Anyone wanna guess? No? THE OUTSIDE!!! Harharhar. Oh, it was good wholesome fun for all.

This here is Pete the horse. He weighs 1700 pounds and eats corn off a coat wire from a little two year old that could be mistaken for a bale of hay.

He tolerates parents hoisting their young kids on his back after he’s pulled a wagon full of people around town through brick streets on a hot July day.

Pete was trying to give me a big juicy kiss, but my dadgum toddler got in the way and shoved a wired corn cob in his mouth. It’s okay Pete, I know you love me, I saw that tail whisking around, my heart is forever yours.