Tuesday, May 12, 2009

what a day!!!!

What an amazing day it was on the farm!!!! We started out with a visit from the farrier to trim the horse's feet. Everyone was quite good and stood like "gentlemen" to have their feet done. The only complaint that I get with the drafts, is that they can be "lazy" and like to lean on the farrier!!! Holding up a few hundred pounds can be hard on the back!!! so, there is the occasional "elbow in the ribs" to get them standing on their on three legs!!!!

Just to give you some idea of how big Duke's feet are!!!!

and just how tiny Mocha's feet are!!! we certainly have variety on the farm!!!!

I've been watching my bird houses pretty closely these days. Today I found out for sure, that both houses have "tenants"... because you can hear the babies chirping when the parents arrive. I think that I have a bluebird family in one house and a blue indigo family in the other house. Both birds are bright blue, but one set seems to have a reddish underside and the other (in this picture) has a bright white underside. I keep hoping that I can get a real good close up shot and see for sure what we have. But, it's fun to watch them go in and out.....

Today, we "took the day off from house work" and just did some chores around the farm. One which included turning over the manure pile and cleaning up the paddock area. I am so thrilled that we have this tractor...it certainly makes short work of it all... I don't know where we would be without it.

As Ed was turning over the pile, he called to me and said... "you might want to save that little fellow from getting squished"... and I looked and say this very handsome toad!!! So, I scooped him up and took him to a safe location... but not before getting some very cute photos of him!!!!

I can't tell is he is happy with his new place or just posing for a picture.... I really don't speak "toad"......

Now, there has been a great mystery around the farm with regards to the guinea hens. We are down to two, and I have been wondering if they were a "couple". For over a week, we have only seen one bird around and only one coming in at night. Just when I think that something must have happened to the other... "she" shows up for a little bit and then disappears again. Today, when I spotted her, I was determined to find out "where" she was going.....

And we have discovered that she is sitting on a nest!!!! It is so clever where she has made it... along the stone wall that boarders our field. When she is on the nest, she looks just like one of the rocks in the wall. I was a little mean and poked her with a stick just enough to see how many eggs she has... a quick count, I think I saw about 14 of them.

As much as I would like to take the nest and bring it in where it would truly be safe, my bird friends say "don't touch it"... so, I will leave it for now and just check it every so often. If we do get some "keets"... then I will catch them and bring them inside. This is very exciting...so stay tuned for baby guinea hen updates!!!!!

And if the day wasn't already filled with exciting things... this evening Ed was heading down to the fire station, and not two camps away from us...

this big cow moose crossed the road in front of him. Fortunately, he was able to get this picture with his cell phone... he said when he first saw her, he thought she was someone's horse and it took him a minute to realize what he actually saw!!!!

ahhh... a "real day" of living in the country...... wonderful!!!!!! and that dear readers should catch you all update on the news.... I know, I know... it's been a few days, so you would expect some "news"!!!!!!


Yesterday my little fly predators arrived in the mail!!! If you remember, I had ordered them one day last winter and they said that once the good weather came, they would be shipped.

Now, these little predators eat the fly lava that is in manure piles and the like and are suppose to reduce the fly population. I have talked with several people who use them, and I guess they make a big difference around your barn and animals... so I am anxious to try them out.

The funny thing is, you can't put them out right away... actually you have to keep them warm and in their package for a few days... because they need to hatch. What you see here are the fly predator "eggs" (the black specs) and they have been shipped in saw dust.
You have to watch for "movement" in the package, and then take them out and sprinkle them around your manure pile, area of your paddock etc....
so... we're waiting for hatchlings!!!!!

workin' in the cellar

Once Ed got all the foam boards/radiant heat 'stuff" done in his garage, we moved into the cellar.

This part of the project was a bit "trickier" because we have stone in the cellar verses the compacted sand in the garage. We spent an entire day, leveling out the stone and getting the foam boards down. It was a lot of work, but it looked so nice when everything was in place.
This is the part of the cellar area that will be the kennel. Our guest dogs will be toasty warm with the radiant heat floor underneath them. Sadie and I are also toying with the idea of opening a small doggie day care.. as far as I can tell, there aren't any in our area and it might do well. Course that is something we will check further into once we are settled in the house.

Once the foam board is all in place, next comes the part of running the tubing that the warm water runs thru... thus making the heat. Ed took a few minutes to study the "pattern" that needed to be laid out. It's not "rocket science", but you do need to know "where" you are going so that the tubing runs from point A and then back to point A again. You also have to be careful that you run only about 220 feet per "zone"... so, it all takes a bit of pre-planning.

It looks a bit like a "hodge podge" right now, but it's all coming together quite well. This is where all the tubing will enter into the "manifold" and then from there go onto the furnace...

We talked to the man that will be doing the cement work... and we should have the cement floor poured on Friday...
that will make a big difference!!!!

mother's day & birthdays

In a town, not too far away, there once was a beautiful dairy farm. As a "child" I can remember driving past and seeing hundreds of cows, I always loved looking at that farm. Then a "few" years ago (at least 10 I am guessing) the cows began to "disappear" and before too long, the farm was for sale. Such a sad sight, and sadly it's happening all too often in this day and age. Usually these big farms are divided up and turned into housing developments, and not that it's a "bad" thing, just I "hate" to see it happen.

However ... in this case, the farm was not turned into a housing development, but into a golf course and "restaurant/function hall" instead. I still didn't like to see the old farm go, but, at least a golf course keeps the land open. I also noticed that a GREAT amount of work was being done to the barn, at the time I had no idea "what the plans were" and I hoped that the big beautiful barn would not find it's fate in the ground!!!!!

" Fate" seemed to smile on the big barn as well, for that was the part turned into a beautiful restaurant and function hall, where weddings and the like take place. They also offer a Sunday brunch during the "off season" and I am told that it's "quite the feed."
About six weeks ago, Kassy called and said she wanted to make reservations for Mother's Day and have us all go to the "farm" for their special Mother's Day brunch.... sounded good to me, the plans were made. I was excited to go, because I have wanted to see what was really done with the big farm.

It's hard to describe how wonderful it all was!!!! First of all, having everyone get together was GREAT fun. Second of all, the brunch was amazing... I don't think there wasn't anything that was offered. It was buffet style, and you could get anything from cereal to raw oysters!!! and just about everything in between (I did not eat oysters!!!) The service was great, and the place is just beautiful!!! The barn still has a "barn look" and yet it is very elegant!!!!

Really, it isn't so much Mother's Day, as it is Family Day... so we just had to pose for this family picture!!! (besides I'm not one that dresses up too often, so you better get a picture of that!!!)

On another note.... It was also brother Bill's birthday (this is Ed's brother for those of you who may not know)....
So, we sort of had a birthday celebration as well as the Mother's day brunch, and even talked him into having a picture done with his nieces!!!
Happy Birthday Bill!!!!!!!

Later in the day, I invited my Mom and Dad, and sisters and nieces to come to the camp for a cookout. It's always wonderful to just be able to sit with family and get caught up on the daily events, we don't do it enough!!!
Because I was so busy playing "hostess" I (sadly) didn't get any pics of our cookout, except for this quick one where I found my nieces playing with Titus!!!!

Little Naomi is quite the animal lover (how could she not be in this family??) and she really gets a kick out of Titus. She wasn't even one bit afraid when I took him out of the tank for her to see. She petted his shell and talked to him and told him that he was a great turtle!!!!
so cute!!!!!!

And last but not least... to the "end of this day"... I also have to say that it was (is) Camille's birthday!!!
She turned six today....
where has the time gone????
Such a grand, grand day... and if I haven't said it before, I must say it again... I am very blessed and truly grateful to the Good Lord for such a life.