Sunday, January 22, 2017

The Second Ice Age

It's been three weeks since I posted here last so I figure it's about time.  My title tonight refers to the condition of our farmyard and the township road that we live on.  I don't think I even posted about the first ice storm we had - have been trying not to post about weather all the time.  I'm giving in though, the ice is terrible; I just had to mention it.  We basically have to shuffle around or risk falling on our butts. 

Pretty typical winter stuff going on here - woodcutting, etc.  I have some photos here from a walk in the woods last Sunday - a beautiful day.  Kevin showed me a huge oak tree he had cut down the day before.  It was dying and the middle was all rotten - a tricky and potentially dangerous tree to drop.  I don't worry about him out in the woods too much - as with firearms and hunting, with woodcutting Kevin is all about safety.

 Hoover came with us and had a good time frolicking around on the logging roads. 

I also got Roye to pose for a photo-op on the hood of "the baby truck". 

I am devoting quite a bit of time each weekend to making soap, making labels, etc.  I am trying to build up an inventory so I (maybe) won't be so crazy busy next summer and (hopefully) will have more time for the garden.  Today one of my tasks was rendering lard.

I don't have any new goat pictures today - maybe next time. There are kids being born already on some area farms but we are not looking for any until April - soon enough.

So that's it for this time.  I probably won't post here again for at least 2 or 3 weeks but don't give up - I'll be back!  Be well friends, and stay upright!

Monday, January 2, 2017

Welcome 2017

It’s happened again – another year gone, a new one begun.  Like most years, 2016 had highs and lows, pain and sadness, excitement and happiness.   Did we learn anything?  I think so.  I hope so.

I was thinking of a recap of  farm related events of the past year for this post, but now in the moment of writing it, I’ve changed my mind.  Not that there aren’t memories to cherish or hard lessons to remember about 2016, there certainly are, but today my mind is more into thinking forward, not back.   So, instead of a “year in review”, you are getting some random notes:

It was about time to get the Christmas tree out of the house.  Kurt and Kori took care of that task on Saturday– first undecorating it, and then shoving it out the window - an annual ritual for the two of them.  By the time they were done with this one, there wasn’t much green left on it!

 The pigs are finally gone- off to the butcher to be turned into delicious cuts of meat.  Their last pasture and shelter are right by the driveway and I must say it gives me a little pang to go by it – it’s kind of a lonely place there now, although the wild critters have been visiting to clean up the grain scraps – birds, deer, and even a squirrel.  You might not think a squirrel is noteworthy, but they are really a rare sight around here.  The cats make them feel unwelcome I guess.

There are plenty of deer around post- hunting season.
This small deer wandered around the farmyard yesterday.

Very close to where the lads are wintering, checking out some sunflower stalks
Out in the goat pens, Vinca is drying herself up -  less milk each day and soon we’ll be done for a few months.  Ranger got his scurs trimmed today – those are the deformed horns that he has.  One of them was touching his head and the other one was just getting too long – easy to catch things on, so we shortened them both up a bit.

 Woodworking is an on-going task in the winter.  
Kevin and Rollie unloading wood and stacking it in the shed this afternoon amidst swirling flakes.  I noticed that they were both wearing blaze orange hats - Kevin said that is so they can find each other! 
 Kevin has also been working on cleaning grain.
The fanning mill - an antique to some people.  A useful tool to us.
The result - wheat to grind into delicious flour

So, that’s about it for today I think (ha, not one word about the weather – this doen't count, right?).  I’ll probably post again in a couple of weeks or so.  Until then, be careful  out there, and be well folks.