12/29/10

Final Farm Fotos of 2010: Wintry Morn'


Things aren't always as they seem in pictures...  
For example, take this peaceful wintry morning scene.






What you didn't see happening in the foreground-
 Two spoiled, hungry sheep making a desperate attempt to get at the feed bucket I was holding.

*Sigh*... so much for the peaceful wintry morning scene.






Want to see more of this beautiful December morning?
Here is the view from inside the sheep barn.









Meanwhile, inside the house, Sleeping Beauty (Lily) has decided that Hubby's chair, which is conveniently located next to the warm wood stove, is the place she needs to be.

All the time.



Every year has it's highs and lows, and 2010 was certainly no different here on the farm... the new year last January came in with a big surprise from Lucy, who gave us twin lambs on mine and hubby's wedding anniversary... but sadly, we lost sweet Lucy in July. We also said goodbye to my beautiful Belle on Thanksgiving Day, something I just couldn't bring myself to post about at the time, and it still makes me a little sad to go to the silkie coop and not see her there...
On a brighter note, Hubby and I were blessed to buy the equipment necessary to be able to put up our own hay for the animals and also make a little extra money in the process. We were also able to build the sheep barn of our dreams this year, and it's been such a wonderful feeling to know the woollies are comfortable and dry and there is plenty enough hay to feed them for the winter. Our scaled back garden was also a nice change of pace, especially after having one of the hottest summers on record in 2010. Despite the heartbreak of losing our own bees, we were still able to enjoy the beekeeping process through my Daddy, whose stand of bees yielded nearly 9 gallons of honey this year.
Even though it's a little sad to put another year in the history books, 2011 is a brand new adventure just waiting around the corner!
Happy New Year, dear bloggy friends!

12/23/10

Merry Christmas to All!


Christmas is just two days away and I'm scurrying around trying to get last minute preparations finished up... I don't think of myself as a procrastinator, I just seem to be behind all the time. *wink*

The weather has turned colder here again and snow is in the forecast for Christmas Day. The wind is howling outside- my chimes have been singing loudly all morning. It has been several years since we got any snow on Christmas.... and I think we only had less than an inch at that. I remember my Mother telling me about the White Christmas of 1969, the year I was born; 7 inches fell on Christmas Eve and no one could get out the next morning. *Sigh* In some ways I wouldn't mind if that happened again this year....

I have to admit, there is one tradition the child in me enjoys this time of year- our church gives out "treat bags" for all those in attendance the Sunday before Christmas. This year we had a wonderful assortment: apples, oranges, bananas, tangerines, a couple of candy bars, nuts, crackers, Cheez-its and Hershey Kisses. One thing I don't understand is how the candy bars never make it back home.... *grin*
 Hubby and I combine our bags (whats left of them) into a big bowl once we get home so we can grab a snack every time we walk by.





I haven't been able to do much blogging this week because I got my Christmas present a little early...

Meet the newest member of our family, Lily.





Lily is 10 weeks old and we're working on the potty training, so being at the computer while she is in another room can be a risky business at the moment. But she is such a sweetheart that it's impossible to stay mad for too long over her "accidents"... .
Getting her beauty rest is a top priority; in fact, she's laying at my feet snoring while I type this. *tiny squeeal*






Did I mention she snores?






How do all those sounds come from that little nose?





Since this will probably be my last post until next week, I want to wish all my blog friends a very Merry Christmas and a prayer that we will take time to remember and share the Reason for the Season...



"For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called
Wonderful, Counsellor, The Mighty God, The Everlasting Father,
The Prince of Peace."

12/10/10

Bay-bee, its' cold outside.

Well, Edie doesn't seem to think it's very cold.... thanks to her thick wool sweater, she's convinced it's a warm sunny day in the Tropics.





Winter has officially arrived, bringing some veeery cold temperatures to our little corner of the world. With lows in the single digits and highs no where near above freezing, the only thing I accomplished this week was breaking the ice out of all the waterers every hour so the critters have something to drink. A nearly impossible task, seeing as how I wouldn't even finish making the rounds before they were frozen again... *sigh*



I'm so thankful for our little wood stove and some good dry firewood- we haven't needed the electric heat pump at all this week. It is really a blessing not only for saving on our electric bill and keeping the whole house nice and toasty, but also because it warms the hardwood floor around it.

(Ahhh... VERY nice...)







The cold temperatures have been hard on the chickens too... egg production has slowed down for the Rhode Island Red girls, and Sarge and the rest of the green eggers have stopped altogether. The shorter days also have something to do with it- less sunlight makes their little egg factories shut down. One of my Rhode Island Red hens has me a little concerned... she's been acting sickly and her comb is turning dark on the tips like it's  frostbitten. I put her in Intensive Care (the laundry room) for a couple of nights to make sure she stayed warm.
She also got fed very well, and I think she kind of liked the extra attention- she flew up on my arm this morning as if to say, "you ARE taking me inside again tonight, aren't you? Huh?"


Maybe I need to talk to Hubby about installing a heat pump inside the Chickie Chalet......


Or, maybe not.


Today is errand day for me so I'll be heading out soon...
They're calling for snow this weekend and I want to get an early start fighting the masses at the grocery store for that last jug of milk and loaf of bread on the shelf. *giggle*

 Happy Friday, everybody!! 

12/7/10

Rerun: Christmas time's a comin'

Just a little "rerun" from a year ago today.... my camera's compact flash card bit the dust and I haven't had the chance to get a new one, so I thought I would re-post some pictures from Christmas 2009.


We had quite a bit of snow when I took these pictures, and although it has been snowing here on and off for the past three days, we haven't had enough to measure. (Yet...)

Just seeing these again helped me get into the Christmas Spirit a little more - hope you enjoy them the second time around too!






























 










 













 









 













 










 









 




12/1/10

Drying out

 Smokey yawns after waking from a little nap in the sunshine.




After an unbelievable amount of rain over the past couple of days, I awoke this morning to light snow falling. This was the precipitation total from 5:00 p.m. Monday until today:

 In case you can't read our little rain gauge, it's sitting on 4 inches.
(Yes, FOUR.)
The chicken coops are a muddy mess and at one point there was a small river running along side the sheep lot. The barn also flooded, but thankfully the hay is still dry- Hubby stacked it all up on wood pallets just in case... *Whew* so glad he did. The sun is out at the moment; hopefully it will dry things up a little even though it's colder than gee-whiz now.



Even Edie, whose wool has gotten so thick she normally shuns the warmth of the sun, has been outside almost all day soaking up the blue skies.






Even with the rain yesterday it was still a productive day... two more batches of deer jerky are finished and I'm drying apples today.
I also worked on the Christmas decorations and although they aren't all up I'm nearly finished with the indoor decor.

Hubby and I have enjoyed hanging this huge wreath on our barn for the past few years....




But while we were discussing getting the wreath down from the loft this past weekend, we realized we had a problem- when we ran electricity to the barn last spring, Hubby hung this light right over the spot where the wreath hangs.



I think we've decided to re-locate the light to a tall pole next to the barn (we need to anyway because this light is very bright) then once we do that, the wreath can go up once again.
Problem solved. *Yay!*




Now if we can only do something about the rain doing such crazy things to Smokey's hair....
(not to mention what it does to mine...)


Happy Wednesday, everybody!