Monthly Archives: June 2013

Summertime

Child, the living’s easy

Some weeks it is hard to know where to start.
This is one of those weeks.
I will start vaguely somewhere…
Freya is doing better.  I would say she made a complete recovery.  Which is good because Gwendy may have scratched my eyes out in my sleep if anything happened to Freya.  We are seeing more injuries right now.  Mostly eye injuries.  We are thinking that this is because the grass is getting tall and animals are getting their eyes poked.  Not good.  We are treating as best we can.  It is hard to get close enough to the sheep to see their eyes though.  After what happened with Melisande though we are doing our best to check everyone daily.  Part of the fun of having over thirty children.  I really also feel like I should do a head count and figure out just how many animals we have.  But then it will change come fall when we start butchering so I am not going to bother just yet.  Bridget went to a new home last night.  It was actually too much trying to train two puppies.  It isn’t like we have enough things going on, right?  So we found her a really good home.  Conner was upset, but seems to be alright.  We will be able to spend more time with him now and hopefully we will at least get one good guardian dog.  

There is big poultry news.  The same lady who we got Ruby and Jewel from had some birds for sale.  I knew we weren’t going to get anything that will lay this summer, but I am thinking for next year.  A lot of our birds will be old by then and not laying well.  So I wanted to get some more layers.  And maybe I went a little crazy when we got there… It is just she had so much!!!  It is hard to say no, to myself mostly.  We ended up bringing home six muscovies, four turkeys and about fifteen chickens.  Not too much more than what I was going for, right?

Then we got home and guess what happened?  Wily, our crazy chicken was broody. We couldn’t really leave her in with all the rest of the crazy chickens.  All of the eggs were most likely fertile also.  So we tried to move her.  It failed.  We were hopeful but it failed.  Pretty much as soon as we moved her, and it was full dark of night, she got off the eggs and never looked back.  Oh well.  Here is some sweet pictures of chicks to make you feel better.

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On Thursday we went to farmer’s market again.  It went so so.  I forget sometimes that we are in the rural midwest.  People don’t know what kale is.  Or what mizuna is.  Or hell even what garlic scapes are.  We did sell a decent amount of what we brought, but I need to remember that people are afraid of greens.  If it isn’t a tomato, potato or corn a lot of people don’t know what to do with it.  I had started an “Unloved Veggies” program when we were in Springfield.  I think it might be a little hard to educate at farmer’s market, but I might try.  It is interesting mostly because we had people fighting for our kale in Springfield.  Really not so much here.  It is alright though we will figure it out.  And if nothing else we have plenty of food to eat. 

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Which brings me to my next topic.  On our facebook page there will be tons of pictures of the food we are eating!  I am calling this, How to eat out of your garden.  Slightly different from unloved veggies.  This is where people get really stumped though, in my opinion.  While I would not say that most americans get a lot of variety in their diets, they are certainly used to a few staples that while we grow, it is not like how people eat.  So how DO you eat greens every day?  How do you not get sick of chard?  During our first CSA I really thought I would like to never see chard again.  The problem?  I would get it and put all of it in one dish that highlighted the chard.  OOOOooooo steamed chard with garlic!!!!!!  Oooooo chard with bacon grease!! Ooo chard with peas!  oo chard? again? I have come to realize that that is not how to eat fresh produce.  Don’t highlight things.  Put a little of everything in a pot, we use a cast iron skillet most of the time, but hey whatever, and add some seasoning.  You can totally tell when eating out the garden is still new and fresh.  We have meals like these.  Little to no seasoning.  The veggies and happiness of eating real food is great and exciting. 

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It needs nothing.  Of course, eating out of the garden does not mean that all your food needs come from it.  You still need starches and meat and protein. But still you can fill a dish with a lot of produce that you grew.  Anyway, I said that you can tell it is still new and exciting for us right now. As it gets less exciting you will see a lot more curries and such in these pictures.  You can follow our meals by liking our facebook page.   https://www.facebook.com/YarrowHillFarms

And speaking of the garden…There has been a lot of progress there.  Jack was really concerned about the garden getting away from us.  Yes, gardens can and do just get up and walk out on you.  Well, more like the weeds come and settle in.  We have so much on our plates already though!!!  So I was trying to figure out a way that I could do something without it conflicting in my day too much.  The girls and I settled on this, we stay out after chores for an hour and work.  We have been doing this for over a week now, I think at least, and there is a big difference in the garden already.  Which is great because there are already spots that have gotten away from us.  This weekend there was a work party over here and everyone helped us with our tons of sweet potatoes.  I love work parties where we are doing really not fun things.  Having people around to talk to and joke with makes it go so much easier.  Anyway, as I was walking through the garden last night I realized that we planted some sweet potatoes down there too as a trial.  You couldn’t see them though.  We had pretty much totally forgotten about them and they were so covered you could barely tell there was a bed there.  The girls and I tacked that this morning. We barely made a dent.  That bed is going to take us a few days. 

The weather has been great.  Okay, it is either dark and cool or sunny and hot.  That is how summer is though and while it may be hard to get things done every so often, jumping in the pond is amazing.  It is kind of equivalent to being outside in the winter and coming in to the hot fire.  If you get right down to it, weather isn’t fun.  Spring is wet and cold, Fall is much the same, Winter is cold  cold cold, and Summer is hot hot hot.  There are these perfect days when you could get a lot done.  They exist in each season.  The question is, when that perfect day arrives, are you ready for it?  Are you prepared to spend the day weeding, shearing sheep, doing ALL the things that couldn’t get done before because of the weather?  That, I think, is what is interesting about farming in general.  You have to give up your idea of a 9-5 work day.  It doesn’t matter if it is 11 at night and you want to go to bed.  There is a baby lamb out there making tons of noise and you have no idea why. You go out there and find that the lamb couldn’t find it mother who WAS RIGHT next to her.  Really, true story.  Once baby lamb was pointed in the right direction, she happily ran to her mother and started nursing.  It really is like having 30 small children.  Exhausting yet wonderful. 

Probably the highlight of our week was solstice.  It is also our Land Day.  This is a huge party that celebrates us getting our land.  It is lots of fun.  Joan always does some kids games.  These probably aren’t the kids games you are thinking of.  She has always done a wild edibles hunt.  The kids are used to this now and find all the edibles in no time.  This year the kids branched out into medicals for extra credit.  Really, they kept coming back with things Joan had not asked for and telling her what they were used for.  I think next year to challenge the kids we might have to do a hunt for things that aren’t useful.  There were also races.  I will tell you, it is terrifying to be the one the kids are running to.  They have a slight crazed look in their eyes while they are running towards you to slap your hand.  There were also pond games this year.  I didn’t get pictures because I ended up talking to someone, sorry 😦  I did see some of the results of the games though. Natalie had some of the messiest hair I have seen on her yet.  I guess part of the games was to do the craziest wet hair you could do.   At the end Joan brought out feathers, crystals and books that she has made from recycled materials and everyone got to pick a prize.  It amazes me each year how great the kids are about this.  They totally look forward to their prizes and are super sweet when one child says they want something specific and they realize they could do just fine with something else.  Land day was great, though it really was hot that day.  Pond was needed multiple times throughout.  

Here are some pictures of the games for you to enjoy.  I am going to go harvest some food from our garden and take a picture to post on our facebook page.  Enjoy your summer day 🙂

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To everything, there is a season

It has been a week!!!

No really, it has been a week.  It is summer with all that means.  It is finally getting warm.  We are getting amazing storms.  I am really going to be thankful for each drop of rain. 

Garden news… It is going great!!! Really.  The girls and I are trying to get into the habit of going out right after morning chores to do an hour of weeding.  Yesterday we did three garden beds. Today we only got done a couple of patches.  The difference between having a good mulch layer and not.  It is really amazing how easy the weeds come out when there is a good mulch layer down.  I am hopeful that one day we will have no till gardens.  It is a little ways away though.  With heavy clay soils, well, yeah.

The peas are coming up and begging to be eaten.  The girls are going out every other day and picking them.  They get a good bowl full of them.  It reminds me of when we were in Washington.  However, then it was going out twice a day and getting a mixing bowl full.  Peas grow here, but not like in Washington.  The kale and other brassicas are  doing well too.  I wonder how long that will last though with the warmer weather.  However, rabbits did eat our broccoli down almost completely.  That was super super sad for me.  Really super sad.  We are now to the point where we are eating many meals out of the garden.  When you add in pork, eggs and milk, well, yes we are still buying food, but a lot of our staple needs are being met.  Which is really great and it will only get better!!!  More seeds have been planted and it is really exciting to see everything growing.

The animals are doing well.  Except for Freya. Last week she was found limping.  I found the thorn in her foot and pulled it out.  However it became infected.  We are treating her and hoping. Today she started putting a little weight on it again.  Ruby and Jewel did their heat thing again.  It wasn’t as strong of a heat this time.  Blackie was slightly interested but misdirected.  He tried to have sex with Luna, the goat.  She was very unamused. I think that will be the last time that happens. 

While Huck isn’t a farm animal he is still ours.  He is having a hard time.  Partly this is because he keeps getting into the puppy’s food.  He can’t eat grains or he starts to lose his hair.  So that started happening.  Then he got fleas and he has a flea allergy, so he started losing even more hair, and getting itching and sores all over.  We ended up shaving him completely, washing him and putting flea and tick medicine on him.  However after shaving him we noticed that he is shaking pretty much constantly.  Huck is about 15 years old, he is not a small dog either.  He is still eating, drinking, running around making it outside to pee and poop.  He seems happy.  Every season for the past three years Jack and I have looked at each other and told the girls that we didn’t think Huck would make it to see summer, winter, fall, fill in the blank here.  He amazes me.  Oh he isn’t the healthiest of dogs, but he still seems like Huck.  Old man Huck as opposed to Huck-a-puppie, though he still gets called that often.  Now we think that he purposefully ignores us like an ornery old man.  He is starting to sleep on the couch and looks at us like he doesn’t hear us when we tell him to get down.  It is sad, but really Huck has had a great life.  I don’t suspect he will see fall, but hell, we have been thinking that for a long time now.  He will surprise us I am sure.  Besides the fact that we can see his old man flab and his tremors now, he is looking better skin wise at least. 

The biggest thing that happened this week was HAY!!!  Last Wednesday a neighbor came over and mowed our center hill.  It was looking good as we weren’t supposed to get rain until Saturday.  There was a slight issue when that was happening though.  Jack was on Penn’s tractor mowing around the edges so the guy knew where to mow.  This was grazing land before we came here.  We have found all sorts of fencing equipment laying around the farm.  Unfortunately, Jack found some with the tractor.   He heard the tractor making some odd noises.  When he checked it out he found a piece of rebar in the tire.  We have found rebar stakes all over the place here.  It is very annoying and turned out to be very expensive to replace a tractor tire.  Really, it was not a good thing but we lived.

On Friday our neighbor came over and raked it all up. The forecast that morning still was not calling for rain.  It was looking pretty dark though so I checked again and sure enough there was a big swath of rain coming our way.  It may have been one of the only times Jack has asked me to hold the rain off. Our neighbor was supposed to come over around 2 to bale the hay up.  I told Jack that there was no way.  The rain looked like it would hit us around 11, it was about 9 at the time.  So I sat there looking at the radar and put up a block. Really, this is probably the first time I have ever tried to explain this to just about anyone who isn’t Jack.  I tried to slow the rain from coming.  The entire time he was baling that was what I was doing. It was still coming but slower.  I knew there was no way to redirect it, there was just too much rain and too close.  As it turns out seconds after the last bale was rolled off it started raining.  Of course, it still isn’t great that our bales were rained on right after.  Can’t do much about that though.  We figure that with the bales we put up we shouldn’t have to buy much hay this year.  Which is really great.  

I have to say that I am totally loving the abundance that is all over.  I used to think spring was my favorite time of year with all the new green.  It still makes me super happy to see the budding growth but summer is really getting there.  It is  busy, stressful and overwhelming but worth it.  In fact I have to say that I am starting to appreciate all the seasons more after living like this.  I may not like the cold, but I appreciate the slowing down, the heat from the wood stove, going to bed early.  Fall is more overwhelming than summer in some ways.  This year even more so as we will have butchering to do.  But the putting up of food takes a lot out of you.  Jack is looking into building a solar dehydrator.  We also really need to get a root cellar up.  Fall is when the abundance really starts.  Each season is special in its own way when you live with the earth.  Or at least, it is much easier for me to see it now.  I look at my daughters and see them really respecting the earth and the weather.  I see them understand things that took me a long time to get.  I see them put down their school books and pick up a farming book to read for fun.  We got Jack two books for Father’s Day that he has been wanting. I am not sure who has read more of them, him or the girls.  I’m so thankful, in so many ways, for the way they are growing up.  For who they  are growing into.  It is wonderful.

Don’t stop believen’!!

well I couldn’t think of anything to go with journey…so…

Jack wanted me to write about something specific, but before I get to that, I will give you the weekly farm update.  Esme is sitting in my lap right now, completely content, not realizing why I was so freaked out this morning.  Usually she does chores with the girls in the morning.  When they had not seen her I did freak just a little.  I had heard the screams of baby bunnies last night, Esme was out hunting.  I guess she fell asleep somewhere with a full belly and slept through chores.  I think I should give her a curfew.

Ruby is in heat again.  Blackie seems slightly interested, but still not doing his job.  That is alright though.  I am not sure I want March babies anyway.  Milking is going much better.  Except for the few times that Paddy gets out and drains Nancy dry.  Conner is totally loving that all the animals are in with him now.  Oddly the sheep have been coming to hang out with him again.  And not just the sheep that were raised with him.  In fact Chev and Iot have been coming up to all the dogs to get their faces licked.  I saw this for the first time yesterday morning while I was milking.  It kind of surprised me.  Then Huck came into the pasture this morning to milk with us and Chev was trying to get him to lick her face.  This freaked Huck out.  He is still tortured by the memory of goats bucking him far away.  Anyway, it is interesting to see the puppies and all the animals, not just the babies, interacting.

This weekend was crazy.  We did the cook shack again.  I think this will be the last time.  We are still getting amazing support from the communities but with Mennonite bake sales and Zimmerman’s so close, we just don’t get the traffic from the Dog and Gun like we thought we would.  Waking up at 5 in the morning, rushing to do chores and setting up the cook stand only to sit there, well, it is a slight waste of our Saturday.  One of the few days Jack has off work and we can get things done around the farm.  If we were making lots of money for the community center, it would be one thing, but we aren’t.

After the cook shack, we had a party at Shagbark.  It was to celebrate Frank a neighbor who does so much for us.  In fact Frank has helped up set up the cook shack every month.  He also buys food for himself and random people who stop by.  He also sticks a lot of money in our donation jar.  Really, I think the only reason we have ever had a profit is because of Frank.  He also does so much more though.  Like many people who do things just because they like to see people succeed, we felt that our “Thank you Frank, we couldn’t do this without you…” wasn’t quite enough.  So after the cook shack Joan came over and we made cake and cookies.  We also made a sign…”Frank, You bring the awesome sauce”.  When we pulled up the sign, that we painted on our floor, we saw that all the paint had gone through to the wood floor.  So we had to spend a decent amount of time cleaning that up.   Did I mention this was a surprise party??  And that the whole time we were at the cook shack it was really hard not to say something about the party that night?  And even harder to make sure the girls didn’t say anything?  Yeah.  Anyway, the party went great.  Frank had no idea and it was really nice to party even though we were all dead tired.

It shouldn’t be much of a surprise that we didn’t get much done this weekend.  I did forget to give garden news last week though.  Out of our 11 50 foot rows all but 3 are planted out.  That equals a lot of food.  Last night while we were putting the t-posts in for the tomatoes I noticed a few flowers!! Yea!  The peas are going great.  I am hoping that our high 80 degree days lately(it is kind of about time though) don’t kill them.  Our greens, lettuce and otherwise are being harvested daily and by the next day don’t even look like they have been touched.  It is great.  I love that the garden is doing well even though we don’t give it the attention it probably needs.  The barn is doing well, though slow.  There is a lot that needs to get done and so little time.  The hospital is taking up a lot of Jack’s time and energy lately also.  It is a rough time of year.  The burst of activity that happens after winter.  It seems like spring and summer just isn’t enough.  But it has to be.

 

And because it has to be, sometimes we need to make decisions that we aren’t really happy with.   Shearing of the sheep was going too slow.  A good part of it is because we can’t shear them wet.  With all the rain we have been getting that means a lot of days are out.  With the hand shears we can shear one sheep at a time before Jack and I both are crazy sore.  Part of this is because we are still learning.  However, with the temperature rising I felt it was very important to get the rest of the sheep sheared.  Only now we have too little sheep for someone to come out and do it.  So, Jack got electric shears.  We got Ysandre and Iot sheared two days ago.  While we were both crazy sore after, we got two big sheep done in the time it took to do one.  Progress.  I imagine we will still mess around with the hand shears and try to get good with them, but as for right now there is just too many to do, in way too short of a time.

 

Jack has also come home the past two days with 12 275 water tanks.  These will be our cisterns for the cabin and the barn.  Now that was the plan.  However, it turns out that there was a lot of interest over at Dancing Rabbit.  So now we only have seven.  That is alright because Jack does believe that he can get more.  It is also great to be able to help our neighbors.

 

So now what Jack wanted me to write about.  I am afraid this is too long already.  I don’t even have any pictures to break this up with.  Anyway, I will try.

 

We get told a lot and often that we have all the luck.  That we are special in some way.  That normal people couldn’t do what we do.  It is am impossible dream.  When we first came to Red Earth I kept a written diary.  Hey, we didn’t really have power!  Anyway, an excerpt…

“Two days ago was yet another beginning. Though was it really? Can you really see a beginning? Or is it more clear when you look at if from the future? Was the first day I met Jack a beginning? Or was it the day that I looked at hime, three years later and though to myself, “I like him more than as a friend.”  So many beginnings, yet I rather think of it as a journey.  There wasn’t really a beginning, just a path. Some paths I wasn’t really aware of until time had passed.  Some paths I wanted to get on, but couldn’t find my way just yet, the entrance need to be cleared.  Some paths I was just too scared for.  Some I got on without being aware I was making a turn.  Isn’t that how life is?  Look back and you realice there really isn’t any turning back. I”m sitting in a tent right now with the wind blowing so hard that it feels like the tent will blow away, there is no turning back.  Jack and I realized about a year ago that we couldn’t live like most people do. It isn’t that we are different.  As much as people would like to say we are stronger, stupider, braver, more weird, strange, insert whatever here, we aren’t. Period. We just aren’t.

The days leading up to coming to Red Earth were pretty nerve wracking for me.  I felt like Mrs. Bennet with her nerves, we all made several joke about that.  I’ve mentioned it many times that the reason Jack and I make such a good pair, he pushes me. He lends me confidence.”

 

We have had to defend ourselves often of being “different, stronger, braver…” Geez! Even, “having better kids”.  Seriously. We are doing nothing more than anyone else could be doing.  If you want to be doing something like we are doing, well then get off your butt and do so.  I’m not going to lie, it isn’t easy.  But if life was easy…well, would it be life? What would be the point to life if you didn’t push yourself to do something? What is life if you aren’t doing what you want to be doing?

 

I feel like I get this a lot.  From breastfeeding my babies, (it is so hard, why would you want to?), to homeschooling, (you have SO much patience! I could never do it), to gardening, to living off grid, to having animals, to milking every day.  But in general, it is bullshit. If you want to do what you love, don’t let people tell you that it is too hard, or that you will fail.  I really do believe that every person out there can make a difference.  It isn’t always that you change the world in big ways.  If you start small by making yourself a happy, useful person, well, that ripples through everyone.

 

Sometimes you have to see that the path you are on isn’t going to take you to the place you want to go.  Sometimes you have to go to the edge of the cliff and jump.  Sometimes you have to realize that falling down hard is going to hurt, is going to be scary beyond belief but that after you fall you will be able to get on the right path.  The path that is going to lead you to where you want to go.  Sometimes there is no other way to get to that path.  What I worried most about was, if I stayed on the path I was on, would I eventually settle for what I didn’t want?  What was “good enough”?  What everyone else thought I should be happy with?

 

So my advice? Jump.  Jump, don’t look back and be scared. Jump with confidence.  Jump knowing that YOU are special.  YOU can make a difference, even if it is just making you a happier person.  Jump and get on the path that you always wanted to be on.  Jump knowing that we are all special, brave, strong and worth it.

 

I don’t mean this to get all inspirational.  That wasn’t my goal.  But every time someone says something about how different we are I find myself trying to figure out what they are saying. Are they really awed by us? Or do they just want an excuse to not do it themselves by setting us up on some unattainable pedestal.  So if you see someone who is living their dream(by the way that doesn’t mean they don’t still have really rough days), don’t tell them how special they are.  Maybe you should ask them how they jumped off their cliff.  How they got on the path they were meant to be on.

Don’t cry over spilled milk…just give it to the dogs.

Greetings from Yarrow this fine week!!!

I would say what a wonderfully fine week this is, but hell I actually don’t remember what happened this week. I will have to consult my notes.  While I do that have a sweet look at where Conner spends guard duty now. The milk stanchion. He has been guarding the babies at night, that little section to the right is where the babies stay. He also LOVES being there for milking. He cleans up any spilled milk right away. He also loves playing with the babies and licking the goat mommas. It is great! I think Conner thinks he isn’t big enough so he must stand on the stanchion. He has also totally lucked out the past two mornings.  It really wasn’t great for me, but both mornings a goat decided they really wanted their foot in my milk pail.  Hence, the milk went to the dogs.  Depressing for me, exciting for the dogs. 

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This isn’t going to be in any sort of order. We went and did some errands on Monday.  We picked up roofing metal, mostly for other people, but you know, we are nice like that.  We also had to replace metal we had borrowed from someone else.  Because you know, people are nice like that 🙂  We also went to our most favorite Amish ran salvage grocery store.  Oh how I love salvage grocery stores.   We also picked up some metal barrels to store feed.  You see the white bucket system doesn’t work that well.  The lids are either really hard to get on or way too hard to get off.  Hence, the girls don’t usually put them on all the way, hence food is lost in one way or another.  There is also the fact that a 50 pound bag of feed will not fit in one bucket.  So, you either have buckets all over the place, or half used bags or well, in any way it is a mess.  I am excited about these new barrels. The milk stand looks very different now.  Last night we went to drop the metal off at Shagbark.   While we were settling up everything (that is the awesome thing about neighbors that rock, it always seems that either you owe them money or they owe you), I was notified that the angora bunnies were weaned and ready to go home.  The girls had already talked about which ones they wanted.  Joan had brought over bunnies about a week ago for everyone to snuggle.  I have to be honest and say I really didn’t care which bunnies, I just want fiber!!!  Anyway, we went and got the bunnies and went home.  They are all settled in right now.  We still don’t know what sex they are.  I am pretty sure they are different though.  At least their parts look different to me.   We will see though.

So here are some sweet pictures of the newest additions to Yarrow.

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Layla and Midnight. Names may change when we find out their sex.  Yes, they DO have eyes, you just can’t see them.  These bunnies are only about 6 weeks old.  I got to see them when they were hairless little mice looking things.  They will give me lots of fiber eventually and I find that super exciting.  

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so you can see the nose, which really is the only thing on this bunny that shows it is something other than a ball of fluff.

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This is Calico.  Again, name may change.  These are english angora bunnies.  They are the softest fiber ever.  Okay, there may be something softer, but I am not too sure about that.  It is sad that I can’t feel any fiber after touching these guys because everything feels rough after them.  

Yesterday we stated harvesting rose petals.  This isn’t so easy.  You can’t harvest the whole flower, just the petals.  If you harvest the whole flower you won’t get the hip later in the year. It took the four of us about 2 hours of constant picking to get enough to do two quarts.  AND we get to do it all over again many days in a row.  To make the tincture and oil strong you want to keep straining out the old and putting new in every day.  We have enough wild roses to do this though.  It is just super time consuming. 

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Multi-flora rose…an invasive species that our animals LOVE!!!  They smell amazing and while it is a pain to see them all over the place, well, when life gives you an invasive species, make tincture!!  And do your best to keep it under control.  That is the animals job.  They eat the rose down every time they are near one.

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They are beautiful though, aren’t they???

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The girls picking.  It was a windy day, which made picking not very easy.  By the way, you may be thinking, wow Natalie looks tall.   Yes, she is.  She is maybe an inch shorter than me right now.  Maybe.  I am just going to say that she is so I feel better.  

Really, not much has been happening this past week.  I can tell you all how much yesterday morning sucked. 

It started out not so bad.  The girls came in totally freaking out because Luna had a missing tooth and it was all bloody.  So a quick search on the internet showed that she was older than we thought, 3.5 to 4 years old, and was losing her baby teeth.  No biggie, or at least not a much of a biggie as it seemed.  The girls asked if they could give her some yarrow for the bleeding.  While it was a great idea, there is yarrow all over the place and the animals all go for it all the time.  They also told me that Conner ripped open the bag of sunflower seeds.  See why we need barrels??  Anyway, they were all over the place.  So I wrote Jack and told him we would need more and gave him the news about Luna.  Then I went out to milk.  There are days when milking is a comedy of errors.  Everything that can go wrong does.  Goats spill the milk, worse actually, they just put their foot in it.  If a little spills out because they knock it, that is one thing, if they put their foot in it, you can’t save it.  Conner kept trying to get on the milk stand also.  He really likes getting the first squirt of milk.   This first squirt never goes in your pail,  The goats in line to be milked were getting lose and kept trying to get into the food.  Layla was trying to get the alfalfa pellets into a bucket.  About halfway through I noticed that they didn’t look right.  Turns out the bag had gotten wet somehow and there was mold all in it.  The whole bag was ruined. Oh sigh.  THEN, THEN!!!!  The girls informed me that Rapunzel had somehow gotten out.  This goat still doesn’t like us.  Catching her was not going to be fun.  We finished milking and then giving the milk to Conner since it had goat foot cooties on it.   Then we went and tried to catch Rapunzel.  We had her cornered a few times but she is a wily one.  I feel that I should mention that I am not good at catching animals. I can herd them alright, but when it comes down to jumping at them and grabbing, not good.  However, we didn’t have much option yesterday morning.  So we were all closed in on her, with me behind.  I figured it was now or not.  If she ran she at least would be running into our farm and not down the road to the train tracks like all her sisters did that one winter night.  I dove and grabbed. I landed hard on my knees and was dragged by her while holding onto a back leg.  Natalie quickly dove and got the other leg and Layla got the horns. We dragged her back and put her in the fence.  After all that I was about ready to be done. 

The day went on however, it always does no matter if you want it to or not.  We knew we had to move animals that night.  That was probably a big reason why we had such a problem with goats getting out.  Moving them was not fun.  As soon as we came to the fence they thought they could get out.  It was a lot of work, a lot of running, a lot of catching animals that got out, a lot of sweat, swearing and tears.  The lesson learned, it is better to move them a day early than a day late.