Saturday, October 15, 2016

Wow! An important announcement!

Well, my long lost Blogger friends...   It has been a very busy year-and-three-quarters since I posted last on this blog, and although many of my readers are also "Friends" on FaceBook, and keep up with most of the important tidbits about my life, I suspect some of you may not have that privilege, so I am writing a quick post here to update you on something God has been doing in my life lately. :-)

  In case you were wondering, I am now 25, and still single... Ha!   But not for long! My birthday is coming up in November, and my wedding in December!  

 Yes, you read that right:

My wedding is coming up in December!

In February of this year, I began conversing with a young lady I met online, and we seemed to hit it off quite well.  She had a similar upbringing to myself; was homeschooled, lived in the country and raised numerous animals, and her family had very similar beliefs to my own.  Through other circumstances, I was only looking for friendship at the time, and so we talked freely, getting to know each other as friends, and sharing some things that God was doing in our lives. 

 By the time April rolled around, we were emailing or messaging nearly every day, and we seemed to be growing a pretty strong friendship.   I decided I'd really like to meet her, and so ended up making the trek down to Missouri where she was then staying with some friends, in order to get to know her in person.

 We very much enjoyed each other's company, and God spoke to each of us specifically during this visit...  We both knew He was doing something, but unsure what at this point...  I knew I definitely liked this girl, and wanted to get to know her better!  (Below is our very first picture together!)

About a month later, I again trekked down south, this time to KY, where "She" was now staying with some other friends. :-) Again, we had a great time, and some good fellowship with her friends and church family.  We had some good opportunities to talk, and again I was impressed with this girl's love for God, and her openness and honesty with me. By the time I had to leave, it was getting hard to say goodbye... :'( 

As I made the long drive back home, and prayed about what God was doing, and where He was leading with this friendship, I knew I had to make an effort to get to know her family, and to gain the friendship and permission of her parents to continue our relationship...    After much prayer, quite a few emails, and a few phone calls, I ended up driving out to Michigan to meet her family in June. :-D  That visit went quite well, and so armed with their permission to continue our friendship, I asked "her" if she would like to come up and meet my family...   

 She flew up to visit our family for ~10 days in July, and during this time I asked her if she would like to enter into a "courtship" relationship with me... To which she very gladly answered that she would! 

Our family took a trip to Medora, ND, and had a great time enjoying the musical, and driving around Theodore Roosevelt National Park!


   ... It was very hard to say goodbye, but she had to leave us again...   It didn't take long though to plan another trip to visit her, and we started counting down the days.   

 The beginning of September found us both at her parent's in MI, enjoying our time together and with her family. After a couple days there, and some long talks all around, I "popped the question", and she said yes! 

We went ring shopping a few days latter, and stopped by the shore of Lake Michigan...

Yes, "Her" name is Marie!  She is the love of my life, a gift from God to me! And she is the most wonderful, kind, generous, caring, loving, giving, beautiful person I know!   I love you Marie! <3 nbsp="" p="">
 Oh... And she's also a talented artist... :-) She designed our wedding invitations!

We are busy now with getting ready for the wedding, which is coming up December 11th!  I am soo thankful for all God has done for us already, and looking forward to seeing what He will do for us as we begin our lives together!

  Your prayers for both of us would be greatly appreciated, as we seek God's will for us together, and as we begin the rest of our lives together!

  "Who can find a virtuous woman, for her price is far above rubies. The heart of her husband doth safely trust in her, so that he shall have no need of spoil. She will do him good, and not evil, all the days of her life."   (Prov. 31:10-13)

 "It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him an help meet for him"  (Gen. 2:18)

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Camera Giveaway!

I entered the  Canon 5D Mark III giveaway, and you can too! :-) Check it out!

~   Posting here for extra entries... :-)  ~
Local wedding photographers
Image courtesy of: SnapKnot - Local Wedding Photographers

Saturday, January 3, 2015

2014 in review

Well it's that time of year again. Yep, time to keep on writing the WRONG year on your checks and notepads... :-) Time to say hello to a new year, to make resolutions, and to think about the year gone by. As I have been sorely neglectful of all my blogging friends for the better portion of the year, I think it is time for another one of those "Year-in-Review" kind of posts... :-) So here goes...

This year was an exciting one for me, it started off with my buying a place to call my own! I already posted a little about that last spring, but it also occupied much of my summer, as I worked to get it back in good condition. More on that later...

 January found us mostly staying inside, out of the bitter cold. Of course there were chores to do, and a lot of work to be done in our heated shop... :-)   We also enjoyed attending Cabin Fever Family Camp at Crystal Springs, hosted by our friends the S. family.

 February was a busy one, in which I finalized the paperwork on my farmstead! I also spent a good bit of time helping a neighbor putting tin on his new shop:

March found us sitting at the local sales barn, selling our calves from 2013. Thankfully cattle prices were very good, and we were able to make up for the less than stellar crops of 2013...
I spent a good bit of time working in our shop as well, where I overhauled the engine for the generator on my grain cleaner... :-)

We also attended the ND Homeschool Association's annual conference, where I once again hosted a booth for Project Appleseed, and also volunteered helping with the convention recordings... :-)

April found us frantically getting things ready for the planting season, and for my brother Jacob's graduation!

My Grandfather on my mother's side passed away the beginning of May, so we were kept occupied with funeral arrangements, and everything that goes with that. :-(  While it is always difficult to lose a family member, it was not unexpected like my Grandma's passing 5 years ago... (Which oddly enough, happened shortly before my graduation, and Grandpa passed shortly before Jacobs...)
 Jacob graduated from our Homeschool on May 25th, and of course we had a great party! :-)

June was busy with finishing up springs work, helping another farmer get his fields planted, and hosting our first Appleseed of the year! Here is our Instructor Cadre for the event:

We also spent some time cleaning up the yard, and burnt a couple of old chicken coops that were falling down anyway...

July was spent mostly in making hay, more hay, and helping another farmer with his hay... :-)

 A beautiful misty morning:

Of course we hosted our annual Independence day party, which was a real "Blast"! :-)

And I also helped at the first Appleseed event in Jamestown, ND! :-)

In August we started the project of putting tin on my house and shed roofs, after the tedious task of tearing off the old wood and asphalt shingles... We also put down new OSB decking on most of it, as the old boards were not in the greatest of shape.

We also enjoyed spending time at Crystal Springs again over Labor Day, had a lot of fun with a bunch of friends again! :-)

 September found me helping out with the Threshing Bee in Braddock once again, and this year I even drove in the Tractor Trek! Our old "A" John Deere isn't quite stock, but did manage to run all the way over there! :-)

One of the massive old tractors on display at the Bee:

I finally got around to working on the tin on my house in October, and that was quite a project! First you take off the old shingles:

Then you put down the OSB:

Then you put the tin on:

 Almost done!

The telehandler sure made this job a lot easier!

There! That looks better... :-)

 In November, I had the privilege of attending the Midwest Christian Filmmaker's Academy in Fargo! It was a GREAT learning experience for me, as that was my first time working on a real production.

 It was a hands on learning experience, as the academy made a short promo film for a local business. Check out the finished production!

December was fairly quite, spent most of my time working in the shop, taking a bunch of family pictures, and getting ready for our annual New-Years-Eve party! :-) Had a great get-together, lots of fun and games with friends!

 I'll end my year-in-review with our favorite of our family pictures this year, which was taken up at my new place. :-) Thanks for stopping by!

Saturday, March 29, 2014

Animated music!

Many of you have probably seen the very cool animated video going around on Youtube showing a very cool machine playing music:

I recently came across this amazing video of a REAL version of this amazing machine! Apparently the guys at Intel decided to have a go at it, and did a pretty good job!


Friday, March 28, 2014

My new home!

Once again I have been long overdue in my updates here, but as I have some news to share, it's time to post once again!

 A couple weeks ago I finalized the purchase on my very own farmstead! I am SOO excited!

What I purchased is a nice little ~13 acre plot just one mile North of our farm, with an excellent set of trees, a little old house, and an old grainery-turned toolshed...
Here is the view up the driveway, showing the beautiful evergreens lining the road.

Front view of the house, looking North. As you can see the roof needs to be worked on, so I won't be bored this summer...

Here's the grainery/shed, Not much to look at, but some good storage. Looking East

Between the house and shed, looking West/Northwest. Here you can see the HUGE Weeping Willow tree, which I love!

North side of the garage, looking Southeast. You can see the nice little patio, complete with a brick grill! Oh, and the very fruitful Apple tree... ;-)

Partway up the drive looking East:

Today I had to go to Bismarck, and ended up picking up a few pieces of furniture to put in my new place. Took a few pictures after moving it in this afternoon, so here's a little glimpse into the inside:

Pictured above is the living room, with the couch I just picked up... Below is the master bedroom, with a set of bunk beds (minus mattresses) for the time being:

Dining room, with the table and chairs I picked up today as well:

And the kitchen and laundry/entry way, which I haven't done anything to as of yet... :-)

I will be working on fixing it up a little this summer, and until I am ready to move in, it will be used for storage and as a guest house... :-)
 Well it's getting late, and I'm going to head for bed, so I'll stop here. Good night all!
   Andrew B.

Saturday, February 15, 2014

2013 in review, part 2.

Well as 2013 is over and gone, and we are rushing headlong through 2014 at a pace fit to boggle the mind, I think it is about time I finish my "Year in Review" post series. :-)  Keep reading for a few highlights anyway..

 May found us still thawing out, but grain cleaning season was getting under way:

The new chicks were growing fast, and enjoying the sunshine!

And we were scrambling to get all the equipment ready and in the fields.

June was a very busy and fun month! Cora and I traveled to Minnesota for a weekend of fun at the "Family Fun Days" hosted by friends of ours over there. Some of the activities included wheelbarrow races, and an extreme tug of war against a pickup... :-)

Then of course there was the annual "Prairie Days" to attend, which was very fun as usual! There are always plenty of games, this one being a water relay:

And of course, one of the best parts of Prairie Days is all the good music! Here is our family, playing and singing a couple songs...

And something new last year, the Band Scramble! Everybody that wanted to participate put their names in the box with what instrument they wanted to play, (or just singing), then names were drawn from the box to form semi-random bands! Then each "Band" got an hour or so to put together a couple songs to play during supper for entertainment. It was a blast! Here is the Band I got assigned to, we called ourselves "The Nonagons: The Band with Nine Faces!"

Let's see, what else happened in June? Oh yes, we hosted another Appleseed! You are probably getting tired of all the Appleseed pictures on here, but you'll just have to skip down a little to avoid them... ;-)
My good friend Jonathan came down to Shoot Boss for us, and we had some friends come from a pretty good distance to attend. Here is Jonathan teaching one of the History lessons.

You might notice the forboding clouds, we did get sprinkled on a little bit, but the second day was a lot nicer!

This young lady was quite happy with her shooting skills! :-)

During the lunch break, and after the AS quit for the day, there were plenty of games going on in the shop, including pool, ping-pong, and darts!

Yes, we did actually get some shooting time in too... :-)

In July we finally got our flag hung on our massive flagpole! Getting ready for our party on Independence Day!

We had fun playing water balloon toss, and Bocce...

...watching the campfire...

...and the fireworks!

Later in the month we painted our outhouse, in preparation for our second Appleseed of the year:

Our shoot boss who was planning on coming from Iowa had car trouble on the way, and couldn't make it. Thus I had to run the event, with a good bit of help from my brother, Jacob. :-)

The garden was growing well;

 And so was the corn!

I like this picture of one of Cora's many flowers:

August found us busy working on the combine:

Well, on and IN!

We also attended another Family Camp at Crystal Springs, always so much fun getting together with friends, enjoying the fellowship, and games!

September found us attending a friends wedding, me helping out at an Appleseed in Spearfish SD, and my first time visiting the Black Hills and Mt. Rushmore!

Really like how the Big Dipper shows up in this shot:

October was busy with harvesting corn, attending auction sales, and Cora and I went to northern MN to visit some friends and help them with their Corn Maze!

Trying not to get lost in the massive maze!

My brand-new old-used truck! Bought it at an auction sale in Jamestown for a very reasonable price... :-)

November found us wrapping up the harvest, running long hours trying to get it all in!

Thanks Cora for coming out and riding a couple rounds and getting these great pictures! :-)

We also trailed our cows home from the summer pasture, they moved pretty easy as they knew it was time to come home too! :-)

December was fairly uneventful, I bought a snowmobile, so Jacob and I can ride together:

We spent quite a bit of time building a nice skating rink:

And had an awesome New Years Eve party! :-)

Many thanks to all that made 2013 such a great year! May God bless one and all!
   In Him,
      Andrew B.