Manger Stories

 Lucky for Mom, she has so many kids to get all the work done.  We had a regular chore rotation: Wash dishes, dry dishes, set and clear the table and sweep the floor, and do barn chores.  We could trade with each other; Deanna always traded out of doing barn chores.  She hated the barn.  Bonita and I would rather be outside anyways.

istockbarnEven in the freezing cold of winter.

Still and all, I felt sorry for Baby Jesus in the manger.  A mangers no place for a baby, that’s for darned sure.

For a long time, part of winter barn chores was cracking the iceon the water trough and filling the trough, so the cows got enough to drink.  When it got super-cold, we watered them with a pail.  I hated that job.

Dad got five gallon pails as full as we could carry and Bonita and I carried them over to the manger for the Belle and Lightfoot, and Ladybird, and Black Eyes, and Blackie, and Mavis, and all the other cows whose names I forgot ’cause I never got that attached to every single cow and calf.

Our barn had tinsy water bowls right beside each stanchion, so a cow could get a drink of water anytime she wanted.  She just had to press down on the lever with her nose and voilà, just like the drinking fountains at school.

As long as I lived, I never once saw those things working.  Dad said those contraptions were like asking a cow to drink from a straw.

English: A drinking cow

English: A drinking cow (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

“A cow’s gotta put her noses right down in the water and gulp the water down, not sip, sip, sip like this.”

Dad scrunched up his eyes and made a sucking sound through kissy lips.  I knew just what he meant, ’cause I never could get a good drink of water from a drinking fountain.

Anyways, I hated dragging those pails to the cows.  For one thing, they could Continue reading

Manger Stories

 Lucky for Mom, she has so many kids to get all the work done.  We had a regular chore rotation: Wash dishes, dry dishes, set and clear the table and sweep the floor, and do barn chores.  We could trade with each other; Deanna always traded out of doing barn chores.  She hated the barn.  Bonita and I would rather be outside anyways.

istockbarnEven in the freezing cold of winter.  Still and all, I felt sorry for Baby Jesus in the manger.  A mangers no place for a baby, that’s for darned sure.

For a long time, part of winter barn chores was cracking the ice Continue reading