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Tuesday, June 28, 2011

I just love summer.  Getting lots of goodies out of the garden. Peas, lettuce, spinach, potatoes, parsnips, carrots and green beans so far. Tomatoes, peppers and squash are just starting to ripen, stop by and you'll be stuck taking produce home, you've been warned.

A few goats are leaving this week.  Calvin and Allie are going to live with my Aunt. Katie deemed Auntie's house as acceptable for Allie. Calvin is taking up much needed barn space and he eats as much as a horse. Maggie's new owners will be picking her up this week.  She is going to keep another Alpine doe company.

We broke ground on an outdoor pizza/bread oven.  It's a project that jumped to the front of the list after my brother gave me tons (literally) of beautiful rock. Of course, my idea for a little oven has turned into a mammoth project involving heavy equipment, rebar and concrete. (Bob can't stand to use a shovel). "It's no use having this equipment and letting it just sit in the barn".  It will be really neat when it's all done.  Pizza at my house Saturday night!

2:18 pm cdt          Comments

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Planted  various varieties of pepper and tomatoes, 24 plants of each.  I'm almost out of room in the garden.  I think I'll plant corn and that should finish up the planting part of the job. Now all that is left is weed, weed, water, curse the rabbits, chickens, raccoons, weed, weed, water, hope nobody eats the ripening vegetables.
11:16 am cdt          Comments

Monday, May 16, 2011

7:55 pm cdt          Comments

Oh my, what have I done?  After my successful llama trimming, I was feeling quite confident in my barbering skills.  Shaved Emma, turned out great, I'm an accomplished terrier trimmer.  Shaved Ceaser, Olive, Ninja and Gretchen, um...let's just say my phone won't be ringing with folks asking me to shave their goats.  Ninja took the worst of it, in my defense she was the worst behaved goat.  I'd say weed whacker accident, or fell into an automatic chicken plucker, or maybe some foolish, over-confident women with sharp clipper blades.....basically someone should have stopped me.  Ceaser was first and doesn't look half bad, he loved being shaved, he arched his back like a cat and leaned into the clipper like it really felt good.  The bratty girls, on the other hand, were awful.  Ninja bloodied Bob's arm with her hooves, she was determined to keep the hair around her udder!  Maybe next year Katie will do the honors.
7:55 pm cdt          Comments

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Medusa is naked!  I have not been looking forward to shaving a llama.  Luckily, my brother agreed to come down and assist.  It was very confidence boosting to have someone with experience nearby, just in case.  As it turned out the job was easy peasy.  Meduse was so well behaved, no spitting, no kicking, just cooperation. She was terribly matted, but I had two new clipper blades at the ready and we managed to get the mats off without too much trouble.  It is obvious an amature clipped her, it's a little on the choppy side, but she is much cooler now.  I had been told to be prepared, once the hair was off I should see hips and some spine, kind of shaped like the goats.  I did not see hips or spine, what I did see was a rather fat llama!  Oh well, guess she fits right in around here.
6:18 pm cdt          Comments

Sunday, April 17, 2011

I am cautiously optimistic.. is green food really growing in my garden? There appears to be lovely rows of bright green peas and a big patch of spinach and potato plants peeking out of the ground! We moved our garden to a new location and added last years compost pile.  I figured everything would go gangbusters or nothing but weeds would come up. My apple trees, that Calvin snacked on last year, seem to have survived-grape vine, not so much. I'll be planting blueberry bushes and cherry trees tomorrow. I mowed the grass for the first time this year, I forgot how good cut grass smells.  I also forgot how bad the barn smells when it warms up.  We've finished the big spring barn cleanup, gag! Now I will clean it out every few days and all will be right with the world, I will come back from my barn with big buckets of milk, a full basket of eggs, smelling like hay and sunshine......well maybe in my imagination I'll smell good.
11:44 am cdt          Comments

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Baby season is over.  Leanne had triplet girls, (Dolly, Emmy Lou, Wynonna), Jennifer had a boy and a girl, (Piney and Poppy)This is the first year we've had more girls than boys.  Next year I'm trying every old wives tale to help increase the girl numbers. Please submit any tips you may have. Thank you. I've decided to keep Gnocchi.  I usually lean toward Nubians for milking, but Lyra is 1/2 Nubian 1/2 Alpine and she has had an amazing first year.  Gnocchi is also 1/2 and 1/2, same mom, different dad. Lyra has had a long steady lactation and her milk is delicious. Plus Gnocchi is really cute and sweet - isn't that a good reason to keep her! Spring is soo close.  Chickens are laying eggs again, goats are actually considering leaving the barn, I may have seen a couple of them walk at least 10 steps from the barn! But it won't be spring until I can make cheese again....can't wait.
8:43 pm cst          Comments

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Domino's little bottle baby went to his new home! Yay! A local lady bought him as a buck for her goats.  All the kids and moms are doing well.  We have started the countdown for Jennifer and Leanne, five days to go.  Emma went a round with a coyote the other night and wound up making an emergency trip to the vet.  She's not too happy being locked in a crate.  I'm surprised at how well she is doing.  I, on the other hand, can barely look at her.  Stitches and drainage tubes, ewwwy.
6:46 pm cst          Comments

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

What a busy weekend.  Gretchen started us off with a little boy on Saturday. Kids are milking for me as I have pleurisy again and can't breathe the cold air.  Anyway, they went to the barn to milk and surprise, Gretchen was hanging out with her dry little boy (Erik decided it had to be named Tyrone).  The kids got her situated in her private suite, added water, hay, tepee and heatlamp for Ty. I ran up for a quick peek (regretted that for the rest of the evening).  Sunday Olive dropped THREE more babies in the morning. (that would be Bucatini, Tortellini and Gnocchi) two boys and a girl.  If anyone can handle three kids, it's Olive.  She milked 1 & 1/2 gallons at her peak last year. Then Monday, Domino had two kids, a boy (Scrabble) and a girl (Jenga). Unfortunately, Domino is a Nubian and is intelligence challenged.  She ignored the boy, so he was pretty chilled when Katie found him.  Once again Katie is the baby mama, we warmed him in a hot bath and then struggled for hours to try and get him to eat. She finally succeeded, he spent the night inside being fed frequently as he was still very weak.  We tried to give him back to Domino in the morning. He was pretty good at nursing and she tolerated it as long as we stood there, but by the end of the day she still wasn't willing to let him nurse without protest and even worse biting him.  So.... he's back inside, another bottle baby.
5:49 pm cst          Comments

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Oh my gosh, I am NOT cut out for winter living. The snow has drifted around the entrance to the barn, thigh high. My sweet daughter milked for me last night, unfortunately there was no talking her into it this morning (zero degrees). As I trudged through the barn drift (filling one boot with snow) I was thinking I am so out of shape. I was huffing and puffing by time I got inside. I milked, filled hay feeders, fed the cats and headed for the chicken house.  Poor little chickies, so tired of being stuck inside. I opened the door to check food and water supplies and one hen dashed out into the snow. I think she has learned the lesson look before you leap. Chickens apparently become paralyzed when they disappear in a snow bank. She patiently waited for me to pick her up and stick her back in the dry house. I started the hike over to feed the boys and the little girls and kept feeling something catching the back of my boot. I finally stopped and looked and Calvin was following me so closely he was stepping on my boots. He is so weird, the snow drifts were rubbing his belly. He waited for me while I took care of everyone, then he escorted me back across the field.  I put a hand on his back to steady myself, he was quite the gentleman.
5:05 pm cst          Comments

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