Tuesday, February 26

San Diego part 4: random

Last one- promise. But I thank you for indulging me, all in the name of posterity.

Friday, February 22

But they go with everything.

Once upon a time, it was the year 2008, and I happened upon an innocent pair of ballet flats. They were slightly over budget, but they were perfect for the dress I was wearing to Tim's brother's wedding in Hawaii. Little did I know that those flats would ruin me. Not only did they go with EVERYTHING I ever wore, they were comfortable (magic to Tim's ears) and I wore them ALL. THE. TIME. And in spite of the huge holes I couldn't bear to throw them away, because after much searching I hadn't found a replacement...
...until enter my 29th birthday my sweet Mom found these chevron gems at T.J. Maxx. She's so thoughtful. As is evidenced by the picture below, they've been well worn and loved, but are still in decent shape... 
...so suffice it to say, I was shocked (read: ecstatic) when I opened these up from my Mom at Christmas!!! I have yet to wear them but much like the first pair, I feel they will go with everything. Thanks, Mom, for keeping my multicolored shoe dream alive. I really do appreciate it!
Have you ever had an irreplaceable pair of shoes? 

San Diego Part 3: Midway & harbor cruise

The harbor cruise was kind of hilarious. It toured the south end of the harbor, and we got a very detailed account of all the navy ships. The guide was so enthralled with his monologue that he gave us the bit twice. It was funny. So funny, in fact, that my in-laws think they have found their post-farm calling. 

Go till you get stuck.

We resurrected the Beast from the East today because of the copious amounts of snow we received from Storm Q.
Farmer Tim and I blazed a trail out to the farm this morning to help out Gerry and Linda with their waist-high drifts.
And being 29 years old doesn't preclude you from wanting to jump in the snow. I. couldn't. help. myself. It's not pretty, but it was fun!
And since it's the first winter with the side by side, we thought a proper initiation was in order. Our order from Gerry was to go till we got stuck. And get stuck we did- silly boys and their toys.
I hope your day is warm, and you aren't afraid to fall in the snow or go till you get stuck. Happy Friday!

Wednesday, February 20

San Diego part 2: zoo & sea world

With 11 people it's hard to do anything or go anywhere very fast. Therefore, my suggestion to anyone in a similar situation is to take the things you want to do, and cut it in half; and that should get you to a more realistic plan of action. This is not me complaining, we were plenty busy. I just think you should know that there is so much to do in San Diego that you will want to prioritize the things you'd like to do and see.  
We walked so much that at one point I thought it possible for my legs to fall off. Thankfully, the zoo had a 40 minute bus tour that I was happy to ride, as well as a Skyfari (see above) that hoisted you high in the air and took you from the front to the back of the zoo in mere minutes. Not long enough, if you ask me. So in the name of "zoo orientation" I happily rested my bones. And since our tour was full of animals (as you'd expect) the only exhibit that required any real effort to go see was the panda. And let me tell you, it's cute. Unfortunately I can't tell you its name, if it was a male or female, how old or big it is, how many other pandas live at the zoo...basically, I can tell you nothing. I was too busy vying for a spot to snap this picture. Did I mention how cute it is?
Sadly I did not get in my normal amount of people watching as I would have liked, but the upside of my predicament is that I was a full-on Sea World participant. No sitting on park benches for me. I'm not sure, but I think my last time at Sea World was during my middle school years and in San Antonio. My favorite memory from that experience was going to the Shamu show. Can you honestly tell me you didn't want to be Jesse from Free Willy, and have a healthy obsession about being an orca trainer after seeing that movie? Oh, that was just me? Ok. Well anyway, I was excited to see shamu and all 11 of us showed up 30-ish minutes early to grab a seat in the shade and away from the splash zone. We knew the show was going to be a little different because a baby orca had just been born two days before our arrival and it would focus primarily on its birth. But what we didn't anticipate was a short show with no tricks. It was a bummer, to say the least, and just like that it was over in 15 minutes.
My mom dusted off this relic, circa 1993, at said San Antonio Sea World. I'm thankful that baseball style shirts and white shorts are so 20 years ago....

Annnnnnnd, it's currently snowing! I hope it snows and snows and snows because our crops are so dry. Thirsty thirsty thirsty.

Tuesday, February 19

Sand Diego part 1: food

The entire Franklin crew assembled in sunny San Diego for a few days o' fun! And I'm going to start this blog trip tour the only way I know how: FOOD.  
Clockwise from the top left:
1. Farmer Tim and me outside Cafe 222, featured on Food Network's Best Thing I Ever Ate. 
2. The peanut butter & banana stuff french toast I ordered from Cafe 222. So gooey, so good.
3. Another yummy breakfast eatery.
4. The berry delicious french toast I ordered from Richard Walker's. 
Clockwise from the top left:
1. Fish taco with delicious ingredients, but was seriously lacking some kind of sauce. Or something.
2. My cute nephew, Keller, says eating is hard work.
3. Fish tacos with plenty of sauce. And heat. I think my nose is still running.
4. No explanation needed, really.
Clockwise from the top left:
1. Glamour shot with the heavenlies shining on Tim.
2. Really yummy pizza joint. We had to come back for lunch instead because the dinner wait was 1.5 hours and that just isn't gonna happen with 3 kids under 5. Or with 8 hungry adults for that matter.
3. Heartbreaker.
4. My nephew, Joshua, with his beloved Papa.

And on that tasty note, I'll leave you wanting more San Diego fun from the Franklins. Woot woot.

Wednesday, February 13

AFBF YF&R leadership conference.

I mentioned the other day how we were appointed to the STATE YF&R committee; and this past week, we spent time in Phoenix at the NATIONAL YF&R leadership conference. I will now give you a mostly pictorial account of how it all went down.

Thanks to these floral pants, fanny pack and water bottle our trip got off to a great start.
Things were made even better when our shuttle pulled up to the biggest and most swanky hotel I've ever had the pleasure of staying. Our room was just off the lobby (which was nice since this place was seriously SO HUGE) and had a great view of the pools, grassy knoll, restaurants/patio and the mountains. If you are my Facebook friend, then you already have seen most of these pictures because I thought the Arizona sunsets G.O.R.G.E.O.U.S.
The purpose of these kinds of conferences are twofold, in my opinion. We are there to actually learn and in doing so, get to hear some pretty amazing speakers. But then we also get to network and hobnob with people across the country we might not otherwise ever have the pleasure of meeting. Warning: I'm about to get (more) geeky. It's especially interesting because you can hear about what crops other people grow- we met a lot of people from the south who make it so no one has to see me walk around naked, thanks to their cotton production. You can also ask your new friend from California what it's really like to work in a bankrupt state or if they've ever heard of deodorant. In all seriousness, it is a unique opportunity to meet some great people and learn about issues relevant to farming that often directly affect our livelihood.
We also toured the JW Marriott grounds.
And we even made it off-property to tour three different local agricultural businesses. There were a few different tour groups, and ours included a vegetable farm, olive oil mill and a citrus farm. Because of this mythical moisture called rain, we were unable to tour around the vegetable farm; but we were able to watch them prepare a pallet of broccoli for shipment, which included packing it with ice. Crazy.
The olive mill was cool, and never before have I seen so many things I love in one place. Their retail shop featured gelato, coffee, cupcakes and wine among the many varieties of olive oil and balsamic vinegars. Mmmmmm. This facility grows and processes the olives, but they send their product off for bottling.
And finally, a mom n' pop citrus farm named Orange Patch that relies solely on word of mouth for their business. I can't even show you a website. I do have pictures, and once you do, you will probably wish they had a website. They grow mostly oranges, navels, grapefruits and sweet corn.
I should mention we were there with with some awesome fellow committee members. I enjoyed getting to know them better and am really excited about what's in store this coming year! Tim also learned about a new game he now likes to play called Fart Football, thanks to someone who shall remain nameless. {ahem, Jim} And with that, I will conclude my recap of our time in Phoenix. The end.

Lovable lurker.

From the establishment that brought you this, I give you my lovable lurker. Who doesn't want an eagle over their shoulder while they eat.

Tuesday, February 12

The small town wave.

The thing about small town living is you can't go many places unnoticed. This doesn't stop me from leaving the house without makeup or shopping in pajama pants, per se; but it has made me think twice before picking my nose. But it's not like you can ride someone's bumper because you want them to drive faster. And you can't honk the horn when the person in front of you takes too long at a four-way stop and have confidence that you will not see that person again. Not that I would ever do that.

I'm still learning to remember to do this; and admittedly, some days I just don't feel like it. But it's the neighborly thing to do; and admittedly, some days, I think it's kinda gasp fun. I'm going to highlight my two favorites. The first is the old standby (and blurry) "Finger Wave" and it looks a little something like this:
And the just-as-creatively-named (and also blurry), "Hand Wave":
Happy driving y'all.

Thursday, February 7

Why I shouldn't be a playwright.

We get asked a LOT about what a "normal" day looks like on the farm. And while I have yet to see any semblance of a "normal" day, I can show you one activity *we* did that took an entire day. On a farm, things don't always get done in the order in which you planned. REAL TALK: this is hard for me because I come from a long line of planners. I may have mentioned this before. Perfect example: rain day(s).

Farmer Tim: Hey girl, let's go shopping in Denver because it's too wet to work in the field.
Kat: But it's not on the master calendar, we didn't plaaaaaan this trip. Is there Target involved? Then, yes.

In both work and play, you do what you can when you can because the opportunity may not come again- or at least for a while. That said, this week's sunny, warm-ish weather and a shipment of new sprinkler tires allowed for *us* to put them on.

Mother-in-Law: You could come with me to my Farm Bureau meetings in Manhattan.
Father-in-Law: I could, but our sprinkler tires might come in; and if they do, I should stick around.
Mother-in-Law: Ok. I'm sad.

And since you probably get my gist, I digress. I will now share some pictures of Tom Tim and Gerry changing tires. As they stood looking forlorn. To hold up the sprinkler you have towers. And at each tower are two tires. It can take anywhere from 15 minutes to 100 hours to change those two tires; and most sprinklers contain 7 to 10 towers. I'll let you do the math. It can take a while. Thankfully, the impact wrench is a heavy, but handy tool to help take off lug nuts, there was no mud and *we* held our mouths just "so", so two tires took approximately 20 minutes to change.
Did I mention the new tires are neon green? And because every tire needs a glamour shot.

 *we*/*us* denotes where I may or may not have actually helped with actual event.

Wednesday, February 6

So God made Tim Franklin.

So this post may be a bit obvious after last Sunday's flurry of Twitter and Facebook excitment; but I wanted to share here nevertheless. It's the now-famed "So God Made a Farmer" Dodge commercial during the (almost lackluster) Superbowl. Thank you, power outage. This Paul Harvey speech is a Farmer Tim favorite, and I'm glad to have seen part of it shared with so many. I'm sure proud of my husband and the other 2% of our population who grow food to feed our world. #thankafarmer