It finally feels like spring

so of course we have a possibility of snow tonight, right? I mean, that makes sense.

No really, it has been pretty amazing here lately. A lot has been going on. Not all good not all bad. That is how it goes with farming. Right now I am fighting the sun. We did hook up the fence to grid power and Jack moved the freezer into the shed so it is on grid power now also. However, our batteries still aren’t up to so many cloudy days in a row. The power is off now while I type and I will have to turn it back on to post this. Still, it was supposed to be raining all day long today. We had the chance of getting four inches of rain, hail, strong winds and the possibility of tornadoes. Doesn’t that sound like fun? To me it sounds like spring. The flip side of this weather is green growing things. There is something about a cloudy day that somehow just makes everything look so much more green. The trees are budding out. The crocuses the girls planted are coming up. Grass is growing. I see worms all over the place. Really, worms are exciting. We never really saw worms before. Our soil is improving. I need to go out in a couple of weeks and take our land pictures. I am doing this every year so we can document the changes. Last year I did this on Beltaine, May first for you non-pagans. I think that is a great time to do it seeing at Beltaine kind of marks the beginning of the warm season.

So big things that have happened this past week. We got into the pond. Gwendy was of course the first one in. She actually got in last week. Last Thursday though all the girls got in. I thought it was a bit too cold out that day. Gwendy got in the farthest and stayed out the longest. However, Natalie had to show off and actually went under twice. We really need a thermometer for the pond. I did finally go in this weekend. Let me just tell you that while going in the pond this early in spring feels good. Yes, it feels good. Part of the reason people go into ponds this early though is just to show how bad-ass they are. Really, that is all. So, now you know, we are all totally bad-ass.

We did a lot of work though, which is why we wanted to get in the pond. We finished shearing Rosie. She only had half left but I guess she was pissed at us for leaving her with that god awful haircut for so long. I actually injured myself a few times while holding her, pulled muscles and such. It wasn’t fun. It also took the longest. We moved onto Chloe right after and she went much easier. We also found that she rooed. That was neat. Rooing is where the wool can just be pulled away, no shearing necessary. I rooed her a bit while Jack sheared. It went pretty quick that way. We then moved them all in with stock. We also moved all the goats and kids back in with stock that day also. Luna stayed up since she was still not doing the greatest. The next day we moved all the assorted animal shelters down that we didn’t need up here also. Just yesterday since Luna is looking better and her boy is moving so much better I moved them in with stock. The only animals we have around the house now are the puppies and the chickens. We have plans for them also. The girls have been taking the puppies in with stock each day, sometimes on a leash sometimes letting them go. We aren’t ready for them to be down there unsupervised but they are getting there. The poor puppies are getting beat up by Rosie. She does not like them near her babies. That is understandable. The puppies however just really and I mean REALLY want to lick babies. The goat kids let them a lot of the time and the mommies have been around the puppies for most of their life so they don’t mind too much. It is really really sweet.

Luna is still having some problems. We broke down and gave her another round of antibiotics. We think she may have retained part of her placenta. I really can’t remember if I posted about this or not. We went with a low daily dose at first but then a few days after that she was panting and had a decent fever. We gave her a higher dose but she still is having issues. I am hoping that she gets better soon. Her boy is doing much better. He can get around really well on three legs. Anya, our local chiropractor, looked at him and did a little adjustment. I wish we had done that sooner for him. He does occasionally put a little weight on that leg now. I am hopeful.

Milking has been going well. There has been a few times that the kids have gotten out sometime in the night and have left me with no milk. It is crazy to see how big these guys are getting. Especially Patty. I would almost call him pudgy. Cora is still really small but Danielle is going well also. Megan seems sad that she doesn’t have a baby. I think she really misses Joy. It is sad. She cries and hangs around with the babies a lot. I think next time around she will be a better mother.

We had visitors this past week. Actually, Mac and Anya have been hanging out a lot over here. They are thinking about leasing some land from us. So this past week was their official visitor session. We got a lot done, part of what I have already mentioned but still more. We got so much planted this past week! Potatoes, oats, onions, peas, lettuce, chards, greens, turnips, beets, the list goes on. They also propagated a bunch of tree cuttings we have taken from local orchards. So much has gotten done and it really feels like we are rising from the ground and our leaves are budding out. We are really excited to have people over who are excited about the same things we are. This spring and summer seem especially hopeful and bright.

So that all sounds super, doesn’t it? I mean, it would seem like nothing bad happened on the farm this week. I was saving the really bad part for last. For the past couple of weeks Spot hadn’t been doing well. I think I wrote about the scare he gave us last week. Well, we kept going out to check on him, and it seemed like every other time he had bloat, or he wouldn’t get up or something. We were running down there often, getting him up and moving or whatever he needed. Sometimes you would go down there and he would be fine. Up and moving about, eating grass, drinking. He looked good. And then he would look horrible. We tried just about everything, though we didn’t think of a few things until last night. Anyway, last night we went out there and even with Jack helping we could not get him up. We tried a few last things but he died in about a half hour. He was barely with us when we went down there. He had been up and moving not an hour before when we checked on him. It is frustrating that sometimes it really doesn’t matter what you do. What is actually more frustrating for me though is that my animals aren’t supposed to have bad days. I forbid it. Oh you can get sick, but then you get better period. Spot’s long, drawn out sickness that seemed to get better then worse then better tears at me. Every time we went down there and thought, this time what we do will make a difference. And it seemed to until next time. When we went down there last night we all knew that he wasn’t getting up again. We are all very sad right now. I don’t know what it was about those bulls, but they just were not quite as healthy as we thought. Blackie seems fine but I have to wonder now.

I can’t end on that. I didn’t want to write about it. It had to be written about, but I didn’t want to. Now, I don’t want to end with that. Well, with every loss there is equal gain, right? Not exactly a gain, but the promise of gain I guess. Ruby was in heat a couple of days ago. She was very affectionate. At first I thought she just liked my new plaid shirt. I mean who wouldn’t? She was mooing something horrible and bugging everyone, even the goats, for some love. The goats were not amused. They have a feud the goats and the cows. The cows started it, they eat too much hay. Or at least that is what the goats tell me. The cows say that the goats are always jumping on the mineral feeder so they can’t get into it. They also hog the shelter at night. I have tried to mediate, but it doesn’t work too well. Anyway, Ruby, heat. One day soon we will get her bred. Then I will be spending all my days milking and making cheese and such. Oh but butter!!! I look forward to it. Butter…cheese…


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