Sunday, January 12, 2014
Well.. this isn't exactly what I would call "good service dog training!!!" Miss Debbie, I know she sees the cockers on the couch and assumes it must be OK for you (which it isn't).. so just after I took this photo... she was quickly shooed off!!!!
So, it's been our typical January... snow storms roll threw about once a week, and Ed is out there plowing and snowblowing. I am just so thankful for our tractor, it makes moving snow around a fairly easy task...
And I love the fact that Ed makes nice big paths for me to walk to the barn and get to other places around the farm.
But, after the snows, you can usually count on the January thaw... and we heard one was on it's way. This makes for a good time to check on the bees, and since I am slightly "worried" about their winter stock of food (ie: honey), we decided to make them a "candy board". It's just a fancy name for sugar and water, but it can be a resource if they are running low.
All you have to do is have a screen board.. mix boiling water and sugar....
dump the sugar on the screen, and pack it down. Basically it's a big sugar cube... you let it "cure" a day or two and then take it out and put in the top layer of the hive.
Many keepers put their candy boards on in the fall when they close up the hives... since we didn't get to it... I'm hoping that it will be OK to do it now.
A few days later, we went out to the hive with the candy board. We cleaned some of the snow away and was so happy to hear that nice buzzing sound inside. When we opened the top (which we didn't keep out long for fear of letting in too much cold).. we saw the bees alive and moving about. I didn't get into see how much honey they have, but now with the candy board, I feel better that they will have more to go on. It's been a pretty cold winter... colder than last year, so I only hope that "my little gals" will make it threw.
Because the day was so nice, after tending the bees, Ed and I took a little snow shoeing trip around the field. Certainly not as fast and exciting as the snow mobiles on New Year's.. but it was nice to be out and enjoying the winter. And the tracks made by the snow mobiles were pretty nice to walk in...
As long as we don't return to that bitter cold weather, I hope to get out on my "shoes" more often.
Then the warm weather really came in... it felt so nice to go out and not have that blast of cold. But, it doesn't come without it's own "winter issues".. mainly... melting snow during the day and cold temps at night, which makes for....
ICE!!!! and lots of it!!! our drive is dirt, so it doesn't melt like a tar drive would.. and everything became a skating rink!!! I am not a fan of ice... I hate slipping and fear falling... so my nice walks to the barn aren't happening.. I drive!!!
It was so bad that we had to hire a sander come in and help. Which I sort of feel like is a waste of money, but when the ice gets this bad.. it's a real risk.. so sander it is....
Took Debbie to the mall for some public work. Again, as nice as the weather is, it would be much more fun to be outside.. but everywhere the footing is bad.... so the mall is a safe choice.
And my friend Kathleen wanted to get her dog out working as well. So, it was a nice field trip to bring Debbie and Brutus out. For a week day the mall was fairly busy, I noticed there were a lot of "walkers" there, so I assume everyone is doing the same... getting out of the house, but in a safe place!!!
Debbie and Brutus were very good... and we practiced many of the service dog 'words"... Deb did some nice unders and both dogs laid quietly while we got a coffee and had a chance to visit. These dogs are good friends, and Brutus will be sad when it's time for Deb to head to college.
A few days later, we were off on another adventure. Nate and Mike were at the local gun show with their new business. And not that I am a big fan of guns, but it was "something to do" (and a place to bring Deb).. so we went along to see what it's all about.
Nate and Mike started their business about a year ago. For a small business, I think it's doing fairly well... and will grow over time. The guys didn't know "how they would do" at the show, but figured at least it would help to get their name out there.
It was a busy place.... I didn't know so many people would be interested in guns....
Deb was a real good girl and handled the crowd the well. She is pretty easy going and yet "serious" with her work... so I was happy to see when people reached out to her, she just went about her business, acting as a service dog should.
It was an interesting afternoon. On our way home we stopped for some supper and then coming back.. I have to say was the worse driving we have ever done. With the January thaw still well in place, the fog was just horrid.. and as it got dark, it was even worse. I worried about black ice, but Ed was worried about seeing well enough to even keep on the road!!! We made it home safe, but I would be very happy not to try that again!!!
The horses certainly enjoyed this break. I was able to take Silver' blanket off and he enjoyed the sun.
The big boys were playful... but with so much ice still about, I really don't like to see them racing about so much....
there are some bare patches of ground being to appear.. but the truth is.. this is a tease, and the cold weather will return.. and certainly more snow in the future. Days like this I can understand why some go south for the winter... not sure that I would - we can't with the farm, but I do understand.... (don't get used to this Tonka buddy!!!)
I never make New Year's resolutions anymore... because I never keep them. But, this year, I did make one... I have decided to finish all my "un---finished objects" (UFO's).. looking threw my stash, I have so many projects, that with just a bit more time, I could finish up. So... I am telling myself... no more buying anything "new" until I get some of the UFO's done. Well.. I got the first (of many) completed.... this is a cross stitch piece, which I can't even think how long I have worked on. I'd pick it up, work awhile - get sick of it - and then stuff it away... this time however, it was staying out until done...
and so it is..... now, onto another!!!!