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I am Sandra - faithful steward. listener. shepherd. dream believer. hard worker. collects brass bells, boots. Jesus follower. contented. star gazer. homemaker. farmer. prayer warrior. country woman. reader. traveler. writer. homebody. living life large.

Saturday, November 14, 2015

My Knees Are Crying Like Babies

This morning, my knees are crying like babies and at first, with an idiot's wisdom, I thought "It must be going to rain." Then I checked the weather and find it's not supposed to rain until Wednesday and reconsidered the knee situation. Oh. Right. The wood stack on the back porch went from the above to 

which meant one step up on the porch, carrying wood, one step down on the ground, repeat until wood off ground and onto rack. The large piece, left, will be used as a back porch table; a sweet reminder of the gift of the sugar maple. In the interest of full disclosure, the back side is what I did before leaving to do errands. The front is what Faith did when she came to help yesterday. Still, immodesty bids me also tell you, Faith is 2/3 my age; she's 21 to my 62 so your adulation and praise should not be withheld on my behalf (HAHAHAHAHA).

There's one more wood rack to fill and, in the next few days, the boys will be along with black locust. I've got a couple of things to finish in the house and then let Ole Man Winter come! But, not until then please and thanks.

Coming home yesterday, of course I stopped to take photos.

A beautiful white tailed deer.

The Cove from another direction. This taken from about where the "Half Mile Tree" stood until it succumbed to Father Time and Mother Nature. The tiny white spot, about center left is the Cove church, no longer used for services. Thistle Cove Farm cannot be seen due to the rolling nature of the landscape and much of the land in this photo belongs to the estate of Smiley Ratliff, a local southwest VA (Grundy, Buchanan County) boy "who done good"...very, very, very good. Dave and I were welcomed into the Cove by Smiley, long before we knew who Smiley was. To us he was simply a kind man, a good neighbor who invited us to his home for cook-outs and a good time. If you click on his name, you'll read a Washington Post article that describes Smiley and our part of Appalachia to a T. In the 1950's Smiley was on the cover of Time magazine. Like I said, a southwest VA boy who done good...very, very, very good for himself and a lot of others.

As an aside, when we first moved to the farm, a young lad who helped us told me he used to play junior varsity football. I asked him why he'd quit and he replied, "Waelll, we'un's 'uld play agin Grundy and I'd be on the line and look up and that thar feller 'n front of me 'uld have a mustash. Heck, Miss Sandra, that just ain't right...them Grundy boys go back to school in September so they'uns could play football and they'd quit by Christmas. Some of them had been in the 8th grade 3 and 4 times!"

Smiley coached Buchanan High School football and was once asked what was the best pass defense. He replied, "A quarterback lying in a pool of blood, dyin'."

They don' grow 'em as tuff as they us'd tuh.

Blessings ~ Smiley Ratliff ~ firewood ~ the Cove ~ black locust ~ sugar maple ~ 


  1. Argh! Sore knees! You should put your feet up today - if possible.

  2. My goodness, Sandra, what a character he must have been! Is his Anchor Inn still open? I didn't make it all the way through the long article about him but enough to know that he must have been one interesting man to know.

    You should be so proud of yourself for all that hard work you do, at any age!

  3. Ahhh the stacking of the wood. Yup, my knees don't like it either. Although in my new house it is much better - no steps to stack. But lots of steps to bring it into the house...wahhh.

    Just found your blog and I'm loving it! I'm excited to browse around further!!

  4. Great work for the wood pile and lots accomplished.It looks great!
    Smiley sounds like a hoot and interesting character.
    Love the photo of the pretty deer.
    Take care of your knees and rest when you can. Blessings

  5. Oh, I do sympathize with you, Sandra! I have "creaky knees" so when I do something like you've done, my knees cry too. Can you take a long soak in the bath tub with a cup of Epsom salts? That's my best remedy.

    Funny story about the football team. Thems some tuff fellers.

  6. My knees hurt when I sit down after standing for 10 minutes or'd think they'd be grateful to sit, but they don't like the change, or something! I hope yours recover fast. <3

  7. Oh my gosh dear Sandra ~ I do hope your knees feel better soon. That's a lot of wood, a lot of steps.

    Have you tried Arnica gel? That has been working for me for aches and pains.

    What a lovely deer and landscape.

    Happy November ~ FlowerLady

  8. A lot of work accomplished dear lady. You amaze me with all you do. Love the Smiley story. Hugs, LJ

  9. My Dear Sandra,
    You certainly have good reason for hurtin' knees, Maybe let your young help more from now. Mine have started hurting this year too and just from age and up and down steps to my attic, I did have a couple of falls in my gathering like nature a squirrel for winter.

    Your land is so very beautiful and I will go back to read Smiley's story! So glad he advised you to get it. You carry a big load by yourself running this awesome land you have. I would still go by your church land just to be and feel blessed. IS it inhabitable at all? Maybe abandoned by people but not God!
    Please take care of yourself.
    Blessings, Cyndi

  10. Oh my, my knees are crying for "your knees!"
    I must say, WHAT A WOMAN !!!

  11. I hope that you are all recovered now! That was a lot of wood to move! xx

  12. I do hope you are resting, dear Sandra. Knee issues are no fun! Spoken from a gal who's been there. I'll check out the Smiley link. ♥


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