Farm Doings…

The first of the week has caught me up in a bunch of things going on and this has been the first moment that I can sit down and catch folks up with some of the goings on here at the ranch… haha…. Last weekend was so beautiful… sunshine and nice temperatures, it was unbelievable after 5 solid days of gloom and rain! So of course, we made hay while the sun shined!

One of the hardest things was moving and spreading all this free community mulch that the neighbors brought down when they picked up a huge load with their trailer! There was a TON of it… and we were moving it shovel load by shovel load around the garage and up front of the house. After seeing all the weeds that grew up over the summer, we want to really thickly mulch and control it all for next year! We had this leftover bit of picket fence, so we thought it might add a little interest to the front of the house… we hope to decorate it a bit, maybe a few pumpkins and something to sit on the fence, at the end… still considering and thinking about what to put there. I think we are going to the livestock auction on Saturday, so we might find something fun there!

We did some raking and moving of some composted hay and such… starting to put some in the courtyard in prep for Spring flowerbeds! Now that the picket fence is up, we don’t have as much livestock issues and can actually plan for a sweet flower garden in there for next year! Good thing, because I missed having my flowers around us this year! I really thought there would be more flowers in the yard… especially knowing that the lady of the house had a FLOWER SHOP in the front of the house! I guess she didn’t have time to maintain the outside too! That’s okay, though… just means we have a clean slate and can really go nuts next spring! Can’t wait!

Jessy finished painting her bunny hutch! And everyone is moved in and comfy. We got some coroplast plastic given to us free, so she made two more potty pans for the bottom and we moved Cornelius and Odin in to their bachelor pads on the bottom. We gave Ozzy a haircut, he’s a German Angora and they don’t shed out, so you have to shear them. I didn’t take a picture of him because I think he would probably die from embarrassment! I am apparently not the best Angora bunny shearer!!! He looks like his mom cut his hair! But we had to help him out, it was getting tangled and matted and he was so happy when he was all shorn out. I think we’re going to have to invest in a good pair of cordless shears for livestock… the scissor method left a LOT to be desired! I felt SOOOOOO bad that I nicked him a bit and it bled… I know that can happen, but I felt terrible. He, of course, was fine and it wasn’t that bad. Still, I think it would look nicer and we would get a nicer consistent length of hair as well, if we used a clipper set. Something for the Santa list, I suppose! We’re going to have to make him a little sweater so he can stay warm… though he has his two girls to keep him warm! They like making a Ozzy sandwich out of their little cuddle toy!

I painted up the porch brooder with a nice can of mistinted dark cream paint… I just thought it looked a little nicer with paint, rather than the OSB hill billy look. The chicks are loving that big space. I love to see them running around and pretending to fly! It’s a hoot. And they just love to scratch around and have finally figured out the perch pole! The first couple days they were so funny, trying to roost on it and falling off a good deal as they dosed. But now they are pros at it and most will be roosting on it at night. A few of the smaller ones think it’s overrated, apparently and would prefer to snuggle in the hay. They must be happy with the temperatures, because even in the darkest part of midnight, they are still all over, some under the heat lamps, but certainly not pilling up or acting like they are freezing. They can be found all over in the brooder, so that tells me they are comfortable. I’ve been watching the temps and inside, it never drops below 55 degrees, even when it’s below 32 outside. Usually, during the day it’s as high as 70 degrees, but really seems to average about 65 most the time. They are all feathered out, so I think they are doing fine. In fact, one of the banties.. Petunia? She, er ah, he has started to crow! So we are calling him Pete now, instead of Petunia. I think after we take in the last of our nuggets on Friday, the two banties will go out to the little coop with Lord Dammartin and Lady Amanda and the crew out there. Once the 14 nuggets go off to finishing school, there will only be 7 birds in that coop and they will fit in nicely!

Our main flock has started to molt and egg production has dropped considerably! We actually have had a few days where there were NONE! We thought maybe they are laying somewhere else, like in the pony barn or maybe in the wellhouse, but we have not discovered a clutch anywhere. However, there are feathers all over the yard and in the barn. I believe the ladies are staging a mass molt in prep for the winter cold. First time I saw all the feathers, I paniced and thought, oh no… someone got eaten!!! But no, I counted and everyone is present. Of course, then one of the Cuckoo Marans walked by and looked like she had tangled with a weed whacker. And then I knew! Several other girls were dropping feathers and showed no signs of attack. So I guess we’re done with egg sales for a wee bit. Good thing for Maggie that she started up her other business! She would be sad if she had no revenue!

Speaking of good things, Maggie scored a great deal on Craig’s List… a whole tote bucket full of craft paints! In the end, she had 85 bottles out of the deal… and only paid $10 for it all! She spend all night going through them all and getting her workshop together. She won’t let me take a picture of her new sign she’s making… it’s not quite done yet! But it’s adorable! A kitten sign so we can maybe get homes for the last 2 of them!

Miss Julia gave Jessy this adorable little doll chair that she got at a garage sale, so that she can use it for kitty and pet photo props! Oh my gosh, how cute… little Duke, Maggie’s kitty, was a real ham at the posing so far. This is just a Me photo I shot of the little dude sitting in there… can’t wait to see what pro Jessy can do! haha…. The kitties are growing up fast and are just so funny to watch as they rip around the house like little Ninja kitties! They do the most fantastic leaps and jumps, it’s amazing to watch them. Topaz is doing her best to keep them under control, and she even joins in their playing but eventually will have to be a Mom and start licking and cleaning their faces in the middle of a big match. And they are adorable as they screw up their faces and push away from her… “Aaaawwwwwwww MOM!! Stop it! We’re wraslin’!!!!” Silly kitties.

Caught in the middle of big time kitty wrestling and surprised by the flash! Haha… they are so funny, just adore their antics.

Did a major clean up of the mud room… just amazes me how that little space can attract so much stuff and clutter. It truly is the farm purgatory. If you are missing anything, it’s probably in the mud room. I’ve got some paint and some hooks and such that I want to put up in there, kind of make it a little more welcoming and nice. We’re getting another used freezer probably this weekend, so that means it’s time to rearrange a wee bit in there and make it all work properly. If it’s nice enough, I might paint in there too. We’ll have to see how it all goes. I’d like to go to the livestock auction this Saturday! Just love going there and haven’t been in several months! Would like to see about getting a few new colorful hens for the little coop group! We’ll see how that goes!

One of the things that we’ve wanted to do is get Jessy a new bed. She really wanted a queen bed for her new room, something bigger and all that. She has the space. And well, I had a queen bed, but in my little 7 foot by 10 foot bedroom…. it was ALL BED! And I kind of hated that. I like to have a bedroom that I can go and hide in when I want, read, craft, and all that. And since I’m not in the market for a snuggle friend, well, all that bed was just overkill. I usually just had a pair of dogs and cats sleeping with me! So it occured to me… why not swap beds! I can see if I can tolerate a twin and Jessy would get her queen and I would actually get some space in my room to enjoy it! Win win situation!

So far, so good…. loving it. I have so much more space now, and I even added a little laptop table on wheels so that I can have a little work space if I want to. I’ve made the bed into a more day bed situation, so it’s more comfortable to sit in there and read or knit. Its a little weird having less sleep space and I have kicked out most of the critters because of it, but I’m getting used to it. Might eventually go to a full size, just to have a little more room, but for now, it’s a great problem solved and everyone is happy! (The dogs are fine, they just migrated with the bed to Jessy’s room! haha….)

Scored 10 great pallets and a nice full wood shipping box over the weekend too! Just gotta love free stuff. We’re going to use the pallets as a little fence in the back over a trouble spot and Maggie has already made a great nest box for the little coop! I’ll try and get a picture of it later on!

We also got 8 bales of grass hay into Blue… a personal best! I believe this is the maximum however, since there is just no more room in or on the poor beast! We found a great new hay guy, right around the corner! And he’s the husband of our vet! Great way to help utilize local business! I loved getting hay from this lady in Montpelier, but it was just a little too far for me to make the trip too many times with the station wagon. This new fellow is only about 5 miles away. And we just love his hay, it’s nice and grassy, and the animals adore it. The goats nearly stampede us as we are moving the stuff, trying to grab bits off the bales until we shoo them away. Good stuff.

Just a very productive few days for sure! With the last couple nights of frost, we know our sweet fall days are so numbered… so it’s important to make every nice day count! Soon enough we’ll be huddling in the house and doing that winter thing… hope to do a bunch of crafts and just read and enjoy the down time! But then, there are things we want to start tackling in the house… drywall…. ceilings…. new carpeting…. yeah…. down time! hahaa…

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About Mobymom

the banjo player for Deepwater Bluegrass, and the editor of as well as the main graphic designer of the Westvon Publishing empire. She is a renaissance woman of many talents and has two lovely daughters and a rehab mobile home homestead to raise.


Farm Doings… — 3 Comments

  1. I get SO exhausted just seeing all the work you have done with the farm. I so do NOT know how you can do all this..hoping your not gonna overload with all the animals..I DO see a Llama in the’s a shop in Marblehead Ohio..called..”Something about Eve” I think… place..a couple little shops..with crafts and fudge and stuff..this one lady..has some farm animals next to the shop that she uses the hair from sheep and llama and whatever else she has there..and sells her crafts inside..along with some fountains, herbs, candles and such (you should take the drive..its always fun to get more ideas!)

    The bunny hutch is beautiful..its all watching the chicks grow..talking about trimming your bunny’ time I decided to give my little dog a hand..(ouch)..she was a Schnauzer..?..anyhow..I did alright..til I hear a “yipe” poor puppy..who already had “cropped ears”..I cut off part of her ear..gosh..I felt so bad..every time I looked at her..she had that one ear ..kinda smaller than the man..I feel bad again.

    Anyhow..just stopped in to see your updates…(LOVE the painted signs you daughter does!)