Saturday, April 27, 2013


Yesterday morning I could not get Matilda to eat.
 I thought maybe she didn't like the taste of the bottle.
So I made a new batch of "Lily's Milk" to add to her formula.
But at lunch time she still wouldn't eat.
She slept most of the morning.
With Luna right next to her.
In the evening Matilda was at her feeding spot at the fence.
So I guess she got over whatever was making her sick.
She was right there again this morning waiting for her bottle.
Between bottles she is grazing like a big cow
and then setting and chewing her cud.
It wont be long before I can wean her.
 Luna and Matilda spend much of their day together.
Luna will miss her when she gets to join her herd.
Taking a Nap on this misty day.

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Sunshine has her calf

Arkansas Sunshine is my mother-in-law, Eva's cow. Her first "herd" as she called it. John gave her to his mother Christmas 2009. Since then Sunshine has had Moonshadow in 2011
and now we have Stardust.
Stardust is a little heifer also.
So now she really does have a herd.
I name my cows for their saint day.
And my daughter's first cow was Millie, St. Mildred, one of the original summer 6. 
But since then Sara has named all her cows after the movie "Seven Brides for Seven Brothers".
Taking off where they left in the alphabet.
So her first little heifer was Hannah.
 Isabelle was born in 2012.

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Swallows return again

I don't think I mentioned that over two years ago we began building the house on the farm. We began the foundations on December 5, 2010. We had the well dug. And the septic system laid out. And tried to build as much of the house by driving through the pastures but the rainy spring caught us and I had to build a road to get the last of the concrete trucks to the hill. We built the house into the side of a hillside because we live in tornado alley and a safe room is very desirable.We are still working on the last touches as we live in the house. Hopefully we will finish soon. But that isn't really the story.

The story is about the swallow that built her nest on the side of the safe room concrete wall. The room was dark and cool. She had a couple of 2" holes through the wall to come and go as well as the doorway. She had four eggs. The nest was an amazing work of structure. It was made from slender sticks and spit/glue. It was flat on one side and stuck to the wall! She came and went all through the spring. If we came close to the safe room she would fly out and create a sound like a ghost. You know, like a spooky ghost sound. It would start low and soft and build to a very high and loud ooowwwOOOWWW! I think it was a combination of her wings and a squeal. She was so quick and would fly every direction, from the small holes or through the door. We never knew where she would come from.We waited until she had raised her young and they had flown away before we closed in the last door in the rest of the house.

The summer of 2012 they were back. Since they couldn't get into the safe room, they built under the eaves and under porches. I think all four came back. We had company under our front porch all last summer. And they have returned this year! And to our amazement one has returned to the very same nest under the front porch.  This year we can sit by the window and watch her without causing too much disturbance. The mess on the front porch is worth the show!

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Lamb Update

Well, Ava had a little ram lamb that did not make it. It was still-born with a missing lower jaw. I know that is a strange thing to write but these things happen on a farm. After research, I have learned that sheep and goats inherently have jaw and throat problems. This is a trait of which I have to be very aware and make sure there is no interbreeding.

So this spring the young ewes had five lambs between them, four rams and a ewe lamb. That means that I have one ewe lamb I can register as a full Katahdin this year, Bernadette. The other ewe lambs will be kept as part of a commercial flock. I will keep Bella, Bebe, Bette, Lily and BobbySue. They were all from a twin or triplet set and carry the gene for multiple births.

Early in the morning

It is early in the morning and I have just fed the sheep and let the chickens out of the coop.
The chickens will run to where the sheep and rams have been fed to get the left over grain.
And then they have to have a drink of water.
The most important thing on a farm is water.
Water and a good fence. But mainly water.

Drinking from the sheep trough
Any opportunity for water.

Wake up everyone!!

This is what we hear every morning.
It is at least 4 am.
I have three roosters, two Buff Orpingtons and this Plymouth Rock.
We also keep Road Island Reds and Delaware hens as well as the others

Monday, April 1, 2013

One more to go.

Waiting on one more of my young ladies to lamb.
Ava is still due.
But this is the spring line-up so far.
Abby and her little boy, Bodie.
Aisling and my ewe, Bernadette
Alise and the twins, Brass and Bolt

And Adele's boy, Bennett

Familly Picture

Honey's family gathered for Easter pictures
Someone asked me the other day if the sheep knew their family and if they ever were together. Strangely enough, the sheep do recognize their family unit and stay together a lot.
(so do the cows)
Here we have a family photo of Honey and her new lamb, Bess, born this February
and then Adele with her new little one, Bennett.
I have been able to pick up Bennett because Adele is even friendlier than Honey.
Of course Adele was born on the farm and has been with me for a year now.
If I am setting down close to her, Adele will come over to smell my hair.
She tries to nibble it and I have to watch for that. Or I get my hair pulled!