Tuesday, August 30, 2011


While the East Coast is struggling to cope with record flooding and wide spread destruction from Irene, SO many states fight to survive in a desperate drought that's being easily compared to the droughts of the 30's and 50's... Please, Please, Please pray for those of us who are trying to endure this seemingly hopeless situation in modern day Texas and other states alike. The mercury is continuing to level out at well over 100 degree temperatures each day. The brutality of this drought is not merely measured by annoying water rationings as it is by the dessication, desolation and destitution of livelihoods and life itself. Livestock and agricultural losses are off the historical charts. The deadly marriage of, the extreme temperatures over a severe length of time, the lack of decent moisture for the past 10+ years and the fatal and frenetic wildfires that have swept these areas, have left states like Texas, asphixiated and defunct.

The following photos illustrate the deplorable plight of many rural Texans. When you're focusing on your own little circle of life, trying to manage, it's difficult to truly realize the depth of despair of the others around you.

Seemingly sheltered urbanites fight their own version of the drought, compared to the truculent rendition of rural Texans. Despite having insurance, every farmer worries about how they are going to pay their farm loans and are then forced to make the decision of whether to borrow more money for next season's crops. Signs like these can be seen all over rural Texas.

Fredricksburg, Texas community prayer rally.

Once a pasture near Webberville...now just dirt...weeds don't even survive!

A whirlwind near Garfield, Texas...

After searching in the cracked soil for cotton seeds on his 175-acre cotton field in Garfield, Texas, this farmer drops to his knees in despair. He planted 800 acres of cotton, corn, wheat and sorghum, and almost all of it was destroyed by the drought.

A waterslide and rope swing stand vigilantly, as they watch their tank evaporate...
Dime Box, Texas

Dead trees are silhouetted against the dawn sky in Wyldwood, Texas.

The cattle are very poor and so many, many ranchers have had to completely sell out. It will take years to build their herds up again. These cattle wait to be auctioned off in Fredricksburg, Texas.

Underweight cattle wait to be auctioned in Fredricksburg, Texas. Ranchers can't afford to feed them or even find available hay. Large round bales, normally $35.00/each are priced up to $120.00 each in some places.

This cow is stuck in the mud of a dried up stock tank...

A ranch hand in Garfield, Texas gives water to the exhausted cow. The eight-year-old cow survived the ordeal, but two weeks later she got stuck again and died.

This cow found some green grass in the bottom of an empty stock tank at a ranch near Manor, Texas.

This corn stalk is typical of the condition of hundreds of acres of corn that was destroyed by drought on this farm in Round Rock, Texas.

Here's the Round Rock, Texas farm that will not have a corn crop this year.

Boating anyone? This is a boat ramp at a fishing camp on Lake Buchanan in Tow, Texas. The owner is trying to sell out, but the property's value has plummeted to nothing.

Many Lake Travis properties look like this: boats and docks rest on dry land.

Boat docks are unusable as the Pedernales River, which feeds into Lake Travis, is reduced to a trickle near Spicewood, Texas.

Monday, August 15, 2011


Nancy and I planned a garage sale for this weekend since so many people were going to be in town for the cruise weekend. It was pretty good, but what was better was to get rid of all of my accumulated stuff that was never used!

Every year, Vernon hosts "Summer's Last Blast"...a whole weekend of activities based around vintage, souped-up, jacked-up muscle cars, rock crawlers, motorcycles and fabulously colorful "blasts from the past"! Saturday night is the big "cruise" on the main drag of Vernon and it sure is a sight to see! People from all over come to this huge car show and line the streets to watch them pass by. Many of the people set up and spend the entire day on the side of the street, bar-B-Q'ing with friends and family! There are all kinds of vendors, live music and people EVERYWHERE! Jake and his friends set up a hay trailer with a huge galvanized water trough on it, filled it with water and all sat in it and watched the cruise all night! As I drove around town on Saturday, I was able to see some of the cars:

Talia came for the weekend and she and Jake had a great time at the "cruise". She even tried ol'Biscuit out!

She grew up with several brothers and had to stand up for herself, so she's a tough girl who loves to wrestle and play fight! Zack sure didn't know what to do when she tried to wrestle him to the ground! It was hysterical!
Reality has hit, because Summer's Last Blast always indicates the end of summer and the start of school!

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Noble souls, through dust and heat, rise from disaster and defeat the stronger.” Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

Still too hot to do much outside - unless you're up and out by 5:00 am...even at 10:00 at night, it's 100 degrees!!!

Despite the heat, the sunsets are magnificent!

The highest temp this thermometer has seen all summer!


DRY, DRY and more DRY...

With this epic drought, local hay (that is affordable) is almost non-existent...I was able to locate some alfalfa from the Kansas/Oklahoma border...not much, but it sure will help. It'll take a lot more to fill the barn for the winter...

Jake's been cleaning up the pasture, loading and hauling the scrap metal to town and has made some good college money!

I had an idea to make a bracelet from an old bridle rein and add buffalo nickles, so I headed out to my pastor's leather shop. He was not there, but his friend was...

He did a fantastic job!

Red River Valley Museum graciously invited me to display some of my jewelry in there museum store! They did a beautiful job of exhibiting the pieces! Thanks, RRVM!! (check out their facebook page!)

Finally bit the bullet and purchased a gunsafe...the purchase was the easy part...getting it in the house was a different story (especially with just the 3 of us)!!!