Monday, February 27, 2012

February in the Tropics

I've always thought it was rather amusing when swimwear starts showing up in stores in the middle of winter. It seems like as soon as Christmas is over the stores start gearing up for summer. I wonder if anyone ever buys bikinis when it is snowing, or air mattresses when the wind is whipping. Perhaps the people who go to the tropics for vacations when the temperatures are subzero, but how many of them could there be? I'm not one of those people. I've never been to the tropics unless you can count the occasional summer storm that blows through bringing humidity to the otherwise dry days of summer that we are a custom to. So wouldn't you know it, Murphy's Law struck today and I went pool shopping! It is February 27th. It has been 21 degrees here for the past two nights and in the low 50s during the day. I know that is not super cold. My brother and sister-in-law live in Montana, they can tell you what cold is. This is like springtime weather to them. However, thank you Walmart for being one of those stores that is itching for shoppers longing for summer, in the dead of winter. Perhaps the buyers for Walmart know that there are people like me who don't think ahead and then frantically begin scouring the stores for those items that they should have purchased months ago. Perhaps the buyers for Walmart are just super thoughtful like that and the handful of tropical tourists are not even on their mind. Or maybe they have us both in mind? I will have to ask sometime, just because I'm courious like that. My pool shopping adventure was triggered by the need to keep the kitchen floor clean because our recent additions to the farm have moved inside and Oh what a mess they can make!

Hilton for baby goats ... Ok maybe Super 8
Naptime for Roan

Aubergine pondering the cookbooks

Sunday, February 26, 2012

The Waiting is over

Penstemon's babies have finally arrived ~ 3 does (two polled) and 1 buck (polled). The Lord has blessed us so much I just can even begin to put my gratitude into words right now. Not only did he bless us with 3 does but Penstemon and the babies are healthy and fine. Thank you Lord!

heat lamp giving little family a very orange glow

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Projects Left Undone

Sometimes projects on the farm get overlooked or put on low priority and then when it is time to get to them the project has resolved itself. Recently we spent the day winterizing all of the pipes outside. Our preventative maintenance slowly evolved into a parts inventory of the sprinklers that would need to be repaired or replaced before summer watering was underway again. As we examined each sprinkler we found one that had been leaking for quite some time. Thick coral colored algae was growing in a tangle of scum, almost completely encasing the PVC riser from the base of the sprinkler head to the ground. But, this was one sprinkler we would not be repairing anytime soon. It had become the local watering hole for the hive of wild honey bees that live in one of our ancient oaks. I know critics will argue that we are wasting water. They could probably even give me an accurate calculation of how much water we are wasting every day by letting the leak go unfixed. But I don't think it is a waste at all and I bet our little friends would agree.
Everyday the sun is out the bees are on this sprinkler. How could we possibly deny them water? No worries ... we won't.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Valentine's Day Farm Style

This morning we received the most wonderful Valentine's Day blessing. Our very first Old English Game Bantam hen egg. Isn't it cute!!!

white Old English Game Bantam egg next to a brown Red Star egg
Clockwise from top left: Welsummer egg, 2 Americana eggs, Wheaten Old English Game Bantam egg.

Sunday, February 12, 2012


It is hard to wait for baby goats to arrive. Days of conversing with mama, trying to coax her to go into labor, just does not work. She will deliver her babies when the Lord says it is time. So we wait. We walk out to the barn, checking for the progression of labor, every few hours and sometimes every hour if some unusual behavior has been observed. Telltale signs become obvious in retrospect but when you are anxious for the arrival babies even a stretch can become speculative. We set up camp in the barn, bringing chairs, books, card games, snacks, and sleeping bags and then we wait. If mama seems uncomfortable with our presence then we respect her privacy but we sneak a peek on her occasionally. We tip-toe, on feather like feet, just to make sure we are not missing the big event. She may need our help and we need to know when to be there. Life outside our farm goes on without us. We stay ensconced in the farm never straying far from the barn. We plan for these days, buying all the groceries and pet feed we will need so that we can stay nestled in at home. School days linger uncomfortably as the girls just want to be done so they can be in the barn. Of course after the babies arrive, school time will become unbearable for us, as our hearts and minds will be on the babies and being near them. But, today we will have to keep waiting. Kidding season hasn't begun yet. I know we will get to meet the new babies soon but for now they are staying put.

Penstemon ~ not quite ready to introduce her babies, but soon ...

Saturday, February 4, 2012

The Wether Forecast

Introducing "Justice" the newest member of our farm

I just can't figure out what has gotten into the girls this week. Everyday I see them in a little pack giggling and saying stuff like; “I wonder if he is nice, hee hee hee” and “I wonder what color eyes he has, hee hee hee”, and “I wonder if he has a nice brisket, hee hee hee” … Well, frankly I'm just tired of it! They giggle constantly and prance around here with their tails up in the air. Any time I try to talk to them they just stare at me blankly, then seem bored, and then run off to gather in their group and giggle some more. I even caught them admiring themselves in some of the puddles. They stand there for hours, tilting their heads one way then the other, batting their eye lashes, arching their backs and kind of easing sideways. What on earth is up with them? I heard the shepherdess talking about a new “buck” coming soon, but who cares? I mean, so what! The girls have me. I'm nice. I have beautiful brown eyes. I have a nice brisket! What more could they ask for?