Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Good Days

It's kind of cold in the house today but that's okay. I'm gonna warm it up with some bread in the oven and I think the boy and I will make some cheesy pizza breads for supper.

Morning chores went off without a hitch and everybody was where they were supposed to be. I will need to do an egg hunt in a couple of hours as every nest had a chicken setting on it this morning. The eggs I brought in came from a new nest in the corner of the cows stall. I'm surprised the calf didn't stomp on them. She really is entertaining when she gets to chasing chickens around. Little Daisy gets so excited that she "barks" at the chickens and bawls when they fly off on her.

The seedlings are doing well and I'm still adding seed baggies to the mix. I just never have enough plants to suit me. Ya just never know what might happen and I hate to not have enough.

Well, off to make the bread dough.....

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

cloudy and cool but nice

Today was one of those icky, overcast days that just kind of sucks the life out of you when you look outside. The temperature wasn't really that bad just the gray did me in. Morning chores went pretty easy and I spent the rest of the day house cleaning and playing on the internet. In other words, procrastinating.

Evening chores rolled around and out the door we went, the boy, the dog and I. half way thru the dark barn lot, the dog is barking, growling and otherwise throwing a fit. I shine the light over in her direction and there stands Goober and Daisy. Hmmmm, somebody (me) didn't latch the gate this morning. The dog has been in and out all day so I know the cow hasn't been loose for too long. Polar Bear got to practice her herding and after heading the cow in the wrong direction twice, she managed to bring her to the barn for me. A little feed in the bucket is all it took and Goober was back where she's supposed to be. The rest of the chores went without a hitch and the evening egg gathering found a broody banty hen! I was still thinking it was too early for nesting but that hen has been acting a bit broody the last few days. Hubster joined me for chores sunday morning and I made him put the eggs back in the nest for the banty because I thought she was acting a bit broody. For once, I got it right.

Still getting seeds to germinate, I'm about half way to where I want to be for this years garden. Now all I need is mother nature to cooperate, warm up and let me plant the corn and beans!

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Lazy Sunday, yah right

The last couple of days have been kind of icky for me. I picked up a bug from the weather change and have had a runny nose and the icky feeling with it. Yay rah, I hate being sick. I'm fighting it tho.

Had to give the cow a round of antibiotics, she's a bit under the weather as well. Wow, was that interesting! It was all the boy and

I could do to keep the gate pressed up against her. We couldn't get all we wanted to do with her done, she's too big for him to hold the gate by himself while I medicate the cow. She worked us over pretty good. I still stabbed her with several needles and even with the gates, that was not an easy task.

I'm a little miffed still from something that happened on Wednesday afternoon here. I feel disrespected by someone I've been helping since last fall. I'm not over it yet and it's kind of festering a bit. This person pulled up in my drive, laid on the horn instead of coming up to the door. I thought there was something wrong so I went out there. Turns out, all they wanted was to ask me to come put hay out, they'd been out of hay for a couple days. never bothered to text me or anything while the weather was nice like this person has done all winter. Hmmm, you show up on the last nice day we're going to have for about a week, lay on the horn like I'm a servant to be summoned and expect me to drive a cabless tractor 10 miles round trip in 38F with freezing rain to put hay out so you don't have to go out in the cold and throw square bales twice a day. Yep, I'm miffed and no, I haven't been to put out hay yet. I will not be treated like some low class servant to be called at the ringing of a bell on a whim.

I spent the day on and off cleaning out the critter barn. I need to get it ready to put hay in. Hay season is coming quick. I've got a round of taters in the dehydrator drying and a loaf of bread almost ready to bake. I did that while I was giving my back a break from the manure. I can still go all day long but my back doesn't think so. I even loved on my seedlings a bit!

Friday, March 25, 2011

Out Like a Lamb?

It's 37F for the high temperature today. The morning chores started out with great big snowflakes falling, turning to tiny ice balls and then rain. Walking around outside makes one feel like it's winter and not 5 days into spring. It's hard to imagine how close we are to planting outside in the garden when the weather acts like it is today. The restarted seedlings are all doing well and are growing.

Lucky the goat is doing well after his date with the snip and clip. He wasn't a happy camper about it but now he can stay the farm pet and not be a stinky goat. Today he is showing his disapproval of the cold weather by hanging out on the porch and complaining thru the window. Wish I could give him his own pen in the barn but the finances just aren't cooperating right now. He for sure is NOT coming back in the house. It was cute when he was little, but he's a big goat now.

Goober cow got a round of antibiotics today. Boy, was that interesting! I don't have a cattle chute here and I milk the cow just tied to the wall. Lately, I haven't even had to tie her, she just stands and waits for milking to be done. The good natured attitude was most certainly gone after the first needle prick and the boy and I had to come up with a make shift squeeze chute to get the rest of the medications in her without getting kicked or stomped on. Much easier said than done with a 1,400lb angered animal. We will be dumping the milk for a week now, the meds will need to work and be gone before we can drink the milk. Hopefully, we can take care of the problem quickly and get back to normal. It's always something here. What a boring life it would be if things didn't happen, eh?

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Spring Garden Progress

The restarted seedlings are growing well. just in time for some 40 degree weather coming for next week.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

A Day Late

Last night, I missed out on the awesome moon because it was overcast here. Tonight, I missed getting a picture of the huge orange moon rise while I was driving hubster to work. So, I kind of did a little speeding to get home so I could get a picture or 2 before the moon rose too far up in the sky. Amazing to see the craters and lines on the moon so clearly with the naked eye.

Even when the world around us has gone completely insane, it never hurts to just stop and be amazed at the beauty of life.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Busy Day Today

Today is my son's birthday. He is 17 now and he chose to spend the day with his new girlfriend. I spent the day like every other day lately, tending the farm and making cheese. I finally got the cheese into the press and got a break to check on the news. Venturing back into the kitchen to check the press, look what I found. Fuzzy cat caught himself a bird and brought in the house thru the hole in the bathroom floor.

I gotta fix that hole!

Thursday, March 17, 2011

The Quick Sprout

Remember me talking (cryin) about how my mini vacation resulted in some of my seedlings (cat and no water) getting ruined? Well, this past Sunday night, I restarted some of the seeds I lost. Brandywine tomatoes, zucchini, spaghetti squash, cherry tomatoes and butternut squash. I intended to replace the sweet and hot peppers but I ran out of peat pellets. All these seeds take between 7 and 14 days to sprout and all have sprouted in just 4 days in the ziploc baggies. This is with 2 overcast (cold and rainy) days. I so love the baggie method! So, with the first day of spring upon us, I'm only behind a couple of weeks now. I hope to find my way to the farm store tomorrow to pick up some peat pellets and finish up my restart.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Todays Experiment

Since it poured rain all day yesterday and is still overcast, I have decided to follow up yesterdays batch of cheddar cheese with some caraway cheddar today. While the cheese is setting, I'm going to work on more dehydrated eggs. "Watcher" from over at APN agrees with me on the taste of dehydrated eggs for eating but he says they work great for baking. So, I'm going to do a couple dozen more and store them for when I don't have any fresh eggs.

Since it's not blowing rain this morning, I opened up the barn doors and now Lucky the goat is running around on the front porch, calling for me. I hate to not let him in but he's big enough now that he does damage in the house. he's a goat and he is just doing what goats do, chewing on everything, jumping on everything and head butting everything. It breaks my heart listening to him cry but I can't sit out there with him all day and comfort him. He's a goat. There's other goats in the barn. he'll get if figured out.

Monday, March 14, 2011

cold and rainy Monday in March

Like the saying goes :"in like a lion, out like a lamb". Freezing rain over night and it was pouring cats and dogs this morning for chores. The rain on the barn roof was deafening and Daisy Mae was full of spunk. She knocked my milking seat (5 gallon bucket) over and kept running by and kicking it on me. Goober is doing well, producing 3 gallons a day, even with Daisy suckling. I decided to leave Daisy on her instead of raising her separated as some dairy folks like to do. I think she will be healthier if left with Momma and I don't need milk "that bad".

Funny, Elvis the cat has eaten the tops off of every seedling I started except the tobacco. Imagine that, LOL. She even hit the Romas pretty hard. I split 2 of the tobacco plugs up late yesterday afternoon and this is how they look today. They'll still need to be either split down farther or thinned out later on. Even so, I'm pretty pleased with it all.

I'm working on some cheddar cheese today...

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Just Another Day in March

I finally caught up on sleep and woke up bright and early this morning. Too bad daylight savings is going to screw me all up again, ;) The cow behaved this morning, more or less and I now have 3 gallons of milk to make some cheese with. My son has been invited (by a girl) to hang out today so I promised to drive him over there (round 30 miles). So, the cheese making will probably be late this evening, after milking tonight.

I've already got some eggs in the dehydrator in an attempt to try making some powdered eggs. Not too sure how that's going to turn out.

On the other hand, I've already got rolls done for the weekend and a batch of butterhorns. Now all I have to do is figure out what I'm making for supper...

The seedlings are starting to shape up from the damage my mini vacation caused them. I guess the kids don't see the importance of keeping seedlings moist like I do. I ended up losing about half. So much for the early start on the garden. Oh well, something always seems to happen to wipe out all my efforts, every year. I'll still have one heck of a garden, just not as quick as I like. On with life.......

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

WoooHooo times 2!

Today is a double blessing day. I woke up to a much happier me. Yesterday was a special day for me so I literally "escaped" the farm and took myself a drive. I spent a wonderful, relaxing day with my
Mom, Dad and sister, got to see both my brothers,
my brother in law, one of my nieces and my nephew. Sometimes with the pressures of my life, I forget about the old days, the laughs, the silly things we did when we were kids, the adventures we had as a family. It really does a body good to remember those things and share them with the ones you love.

Long drive home last night tho ( so very worth it) and sometime between the time I got home and the time my son rolled out of bed for morning chores, Goober cow gifted us with a healthy calf. Not sure on the gender yet, Goober is a little defensive a the moment so the "tail lift" can wait. She must smell the "cheese making" thoughts on me! hehehehe

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Giggles in the rain

An old friend sent me this in my email this morning. We don't talk much anymore but she still emails me funny things she finds every now and then.

Does the statement, "We've always done it like that" ring any bells? The US standard railroad gauge (distance between the rails) is 4 feet, 8.5". That's an exceedingly odd number. Why was that gauge used? Because that's the way they built them in England, and English expatriates built the US Railroads. Why did the English build them like that? Because the first rail lines were built by the same people who built the pre-railroad tramways, and that's the gauge they used. Why did "they" use that gauge then? Because the people who built the tramways used the same jigs and tools that they used for building wagons, which used that wheel spacing.

Okay! Why did the wagons have that particular odd wheel spacing? Well, if they tried to use any other spacing, the wagon wheels would break on some of the old, long distance roads in England, because that's the spacing of the wheel ruts. So who built those old rutted roads? Imperial Rome built the first long distance roads in Europe (and England) for their legions. The roads have been used ever since...and the ruts in the roads? Roman war chariots formed the initial ruts, which everyone else had to match for fear of destroying their wagon wheels. Since the chariots were made for Imperial Rome, they were all alike in the matter of wheel spacing. The United States standard railroad gauge of 4 feet, 8.5" is derived from the original specifications for an Imperial Roman war chariot and bureaucracies live forever.
So the next time you are handed a specification and wonder what horse's ass came up with it, you may be exactly right, because the Imperial Roman Army chariots were made just wide enough to accommodate the back ends of two war horses!
Now here comes the twist to the story. When you see a space shuttle sitting on its launch pad, there are two big booster rockets attached to the sides of the main fuel tank. These are solid rocket boosters,or SRBs. The SRBs are made by Morton Thiokol at their factory at Utah. The engineers who designed the SRBs would have preferred to make them a bit fatter, but the SRBs had to be shipped by train from the factory to the launch site. The railroad line from the factory happens to run through a tunnel in the mountains. The SRBs had to fit through that tunnel. The tunnel is slightly wider than the railroad track, and the railroad track, as you now know, is about as wide as two horses' behinds. So, a major Space Shuttle design feature of what is arguably the world's most advanced transportation system was determined over two thousand years ago by the width of a horse's ass. And you thought being a HORSE'S ASS wasn't important!

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Sunny Thursday

Oh, is today a nice day! Partly sunny and decently warm. Morning chores went off without a hitch ( I like that) and I spent some time grinding up feed when we finished. Standing there tending the grain hopper, my gaze kept falling on that smoker grill on the porch. Yep, it's almost time for some eats, I'm going to light a fire. So, with some help from a handful of corn husks, brunch was created. You just can't beat fresh eggs and a little steak.

Still no calf, Goober is doing this on purpose. Actually, it could still be up to another week before she decides to have that calf. I am just impatient, as usual. I'm ready for some fresh cheese.

No seedling casualties overnight, that's a good thing! Nothing new has sprouted yet, another case for patience I don't have...

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Hump Day in March

Having a goat, a dog and 4 cats running around in the house is proving to be a bit of a nuisance. This is all that is left from the seedlings I had started 2 weeks ago. These are the tough ones, having been on the floor at least twice,
stomped, chewed on etc. Once again, I have a myriad of seeds "cooking" in their little baggie greenhouses. Hopefully by the time they sprout, I will have some remedy for the critter problem.

There was a nice frost on the ground this morning. That pleases me just a little, it lets me know I'm not behind in getting my seedlings going. It's still going to be a while before the soil warms up.

Still no calf on the outside. I think Goober is playing with me. She sure is enjoying all the attention. I don't mind her being so "lovey" either. I hope that trend continues. It sure is nicer than the rodeo cow attitude ;)

It's still pretty darn muddy here with more rain in the forecast for this weekend...