I believe the name of that movie was "Gremlin's".I had all these rabbits in hutches out back behind the tool shed so instead of buying regular guinea pig food I fed them rabbit food since I had bought rabbit food in 50 lb sacks. The guinea pigs started acting funny and I noticed bleeding coming from the rectal area. I called the vet in Highland and asked him what the problem was and he said rabbit food doesn't contain vitamin C which rabbits make continuously just as humans do but guinea pigs don't and have to have it in their diet every day. I lost both guinea pigs due to my ignorance.
Clyde and Mary Ann and Kathryn would come up some weekends and we'd have them walk up to the bluffs to a cross that a man had planted there. It was high in the hills and overlooked the Missouri River. Clyde and Mary Ann smoked and were having a hard time climbing the hills! We were laughing at them while they were huffing and puffing and complaining they were too old for this! Clyde bought a three-wheeler and a cart that we pulled behind it and used that to haul food and supplies so that we could have a wiener roast. King was getting older but he happily followed behind until he got so worn out he could hardly follow us anymore. We picked him up and put him in the cart (or wagon) so he could ride.
When we still had Stony, Charles and I would ride the horses across the way to Mr. Spark’s old dilapidated two story house that he and his wife lived in during the spring months, and then they would go to New York in the summer months and spend winter in San Francisco. His wife hated that house. It didn't have plumbing and they had to use an old outhouse that didn't have a door. One day while we were riding and King was following behind us we went through their drive way to get permission to go on their property to see a place everyone in the county called The Little Grand Canyon. We knew that part of the Little Grand was on his property. He said he didn't care but his wife was in the outhouse at the time with no door and flew out grabbing her pants and panicking because she was afraid of dogs. King ran right up into their yard and about gave her a heart attack. We were told from then on we could come on the property with the horses but King had to stay home. We didn't know how to keep him home; we didn't have a fenced yard. We’d yell at him to stay but he loved to follow along behind the horses so we just didn't go up there any more. We learned later that she, Mrs. Sparks, had died. By later I mean several years later. Mr. Sparks died too, a few years after that.
After we sold Stony the citizens in the county would come on Sundays and bring their horse trailers and tie the horses to the wood fence next to the yard by the road. They’d saddle up their horses and go on trail rides through the hills and bluffs. We only had the one horse now. Sometimes we'd take turns riding and walking and one of the trail riders would give Charles a lift and they would double up. We rode across creeks and through water I didn't think Silver would go through. He’d see the other horses go and he'd want to follow them. He didn't balk too much. I wish I had known about all the trails when I still had Stony.
At Christmas time I invited about 18 people to come for Christmas dinner. On Christmas Eve the jets went out of the stove in the kitchen. I was panicked and called John Whetstine, Big John, and he told me to call the hardware store in Highland of it was closed but I got the name from Big John and the guy was willing to meet me at the hardware store. We bought the supplies we needed and I seem to recollect Big John said that we could charge it to their account along with a faucet for the kitchen sink. The guy from the hardware store came over and fixed it for us and showed Charles how to fix it; in case there was a next time.
We had the usual fan fare, a large turkey and stuffing, homemade, green beans, sweet potatoes etc. We watched the trees bend without any noise heard from the inside of the house. The Christmas tree was decked out in front of the big picture window. Presents were opened and everyone took pictures of everything that was opened. I loved that little house that seemed to loom out of the woods like Snow White and the Seven Dwarf’s cottage, surrounded by the bluffs of the Missouri River.
In the spring of 1989 I graduated from nursing school. I was having a hard time believing I was actually a nurse and was scared to death to actually put my talent to work. We had a job fair from all the hospitals and nursing homes on both sides of the river. I wanted to work for Heartland Hospital in St.Joseph but they only wanted to start out paying 6.47 an hour and the nursing homes were offering more. I wanted to go with the one that paid the most so I signed on for a nursing home in St Joseph. They started out paying 7.00 and hour but promised to give us raise of .75 when we received the long awaited license showing we’d passed the State boards.
In January of 1989 a man that Charles worked with in Wathena said they had an earth home plus twelve acres of land they would take 1000.00 down on and they would go to the bank in Wathena to see that the rest would be put on payments. We had always wanted our own place. We would have plenty of land for the horse and we thought an earth home, a home surrounded by earth on three sides, would be easy to heat. We went to see it and thought how much fun we would have fixing it up and making it our own. We decided to go for it and I used my student loan to pay the 1000.00 down and got all the paper work together so we'd know just how much we needed to pay each month.
We were moving again. I was still in nursing school and had to take myself to and from school in the yellow station wagon we'd bought from Decker’s. , since we lived in Wathena now I couldn’t car pool with the girls from Highland anymore. One day I got as far as Troy on seven highways when the car broke down and I had to walk. Fortunately some other girls I went to school with were on their way to school too and picked me up on the way down. At the end of the day when we were headed home I noticed the car was gone. They took me home and I called Charles who had been named foreman at the Truss Co then and he said he didn't know anything about it. I called Davies Oil Company and he had driven by and saw the car sitting there and took it upon himself to two it back to the station. He charged us an arm and a leg to get it out. We tried to get Decker's to take the car back since it was a piece of junk every since we bought it but they said they wouldn't do it. I think A-1 came and took it off our hands after that.
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