Thursday, September 21, 2017

Repetition

Superficially, there would seem to be a lot of "sameness" to each of our days
here on the farm.
I find the repetitive rhythm of farm life to be comforting.
I find that so much of what I love to share with you ends up being
a bit repetitive as well...
and I hope you don't mind.



A repetitive rhythm is never boring...
if you take the time to notice the tiny, amazing things that happen all around you.
When you quiet your thoughts and simply enjoy the moment...
you notice little things...
things that might have gone un-noticed.


So much of life is hustle-bustle...
and the little day to day miracles often get lost in the shuffle.
Perhaps that is one reason why there is so much unhappiness... 
perhaps we have lost our focus.

As for my temporary focus...
a bit of it was on this particular run-in shed...
before....


and after...


Are you tired of seeing our painting projects yet?
Well, have no fear... we only have 5 more buildings left to paint!


Of course, the pigs were close by as I worked!


Amazingly, my nosey horses stayed away while I worked...


too tired to bother!


We added the finishing touch to the barn last evening...
every barn needs a star!


I have been noticing lately that one of the runner ducks is much cleaner than the other two.
Yes, we have one clean Nellie and two dirty Nellies!
It seems... that one of the girls is obsessed with bathing.
She hops in their little wading pool several times daily and gives herself a good dunking.


You see what I mean?
There are so many little things to notice around here!

In spite of all the work that we have been doing lately...
I still have found time in the evenings to knit.
Earlier sunsets have a way of gifting one more free time!

I just finished this wrap...
it is the lavender silk with a silver thread through it.


And I started this wrap...
grey to teal gradient yarn... with teal beads knitted into two sides.


All work and no play makes for a dull girl...
no worries... I always make time for a little play!

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Painting Helpers

It seems that no matter what job we have to accomplish...
we always have plenty of volunteers to keep us company.


Yesterday we painted the donkey house and the turkey house.


As we worked, the pigs stayed close by in a cool corner of the pasture.


They grunted their greetings at us every few minutes.


I took a brief break from painting to climb the fence and sit in the grass
with Ginger and MaryAnn.
I love these girls!


Meanwhile, the donkeys were spending their day with the horses...


in the horses' dry lot.


Daphne and Chloe are way too curious to have in the same yard where we are painting.
I am sure they would not leave us alone
and would end up with paint all over their coats.

A few hours of painting...
and things are looking pretty spiffy!
Today we are tackling the run-in shed/pig house and the duck house by the pond.


When I finished painting, I took a moment to stop by the garden.


The sunflower heads are drying on the garden fence.
They will serve as bird food when it gets colder.

The sweet peppers needed picking...


Everything is still so beautiful...


not dry and burnt out like things normally are at summer's end.
We had plentiful rainfall all summer, making this the greenest autumn ever!

I planted fall broccoli this year... it's getting bigger and bigger.


I pulled a couple of carrots and headed over to call the pigs in from the pasture.


All that running must have made Ginger a little hot...
she headed right for their swimming pool,


and cooled off!


It won't be long until swimming season is over for the year.

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Midges, Figs, and Guinea Adventures

Yesterday... finally, after weeks of trying... Chloe acquiesced...
and agreed to wear her fly mask!


Daphne is the sensible one.
She believes in sensible shoes and fly masks.
Chloe?  
She's rebellious.  
It's stillettos and no fly masks for her.


I am afraid that no one will be showing their handsome faces in the near future.


We have been inundated this past week with midges.
(you might know them as gnats, or no-see-ems)
Whatever you choose to call them...
they are annoying as heck to both man and beast.


I believe that Chloe has finally realized that the only way to keep midges out of
one's ears is to give in to the fly mask... at least for now.

We are having a week of hot weather,
so I am afraid that the tiny pests are here to stay... at least until cold weather.
I am currently looking for a fly mask that will fit me perfectly!!

Several years ago I planted two figs.


I took a chance as we are just a little far north for figs.
I babied the young plants, covering them with burlap each winter to protect from harsh weather.
I had planted them in an area that was protected from strong winds.
It seems that my care has paid off.
My bushes are filled with ripe figs... the first ever!


I am going to try drying them.
(I'll get back to you on how that works.)

And last...
finally the guinea youngsters have decided to venture outside their house.
It took two days.


The first day they forgot how to go back inside.


After helping them out that first night,
 they remembered to return to their house the next night.
Last night, however, I found them all outside in the dark.


It's always a learning process!

Monday, September 18, 2017

And Suddenly It Was Sunday Night!

I just blinked.... and the whole weekend flew by in an instant!
At least that's how it seems!
It's Sunday night and just a little earlier I realized that I had not taken any photos
 for this blog post.
This explains why the following photos look like they were taken at night.
They were!


We had guests on Sunday for a picnic... and in preparation,
each of the horses were groomed.
Hooves picked, not a hair out of place....
and then everyone decided to roll in the dust and shavings...
making themselves look worse than before we started.

Such mischievous horses!

Saturday morning we took delivery on a load of hay.
Yes, it's time to prepare for winter, and stock the barn with hay.


We have one more load yet to come and we should be in fine shape for a 
cold snowy winter.
Apparently the Farmer's Almanac has predicted that we will have a blustery, snowy winter this year.
We'll be ready!

One of the bales of hay broke open, so we used it for feeding this weekend.


I didn't even get a chance to unload the hay...
before 5 horses descended upon the wheelbarrow.


A hay feeder might be nice, except for the fact that the boys have a way of
accidentally, on purpose, excluding poor Scarlet!


That's it, girl, push your way in there!
Make those boys move out of the way!


I ended up taking the hay from the wheelbarrow and spreading it around the dry lot.
That way everyone had the same opportunity.


Over the past few years, we have noticed that a lot of wineries, and microbreweries
have started to pop up in our neck of the woods.
I love supporting local "Mom and Pop" businesses.  

Saturday we took a drive and visited a few.
We had wanted to stop and visit a local distillery that opened this year.
Hazard Distillery.


They specialize in whiskey and moonshine.
The moonshine is sold in mason jars and comes in yummy flavors like pumpkin pie and apple pie.


I am not much of an alcohol consumer,
but once in a great while I like a wee nip.
This particular flavor... Salted Caramel Whiskey... just might be the best I have ever tasted!
One of our Sunday guests mentioned that he thought it might be good on pancakes!
HAH!  Now that's quite a way to start your day!


I must admit... a bottle just happened to follow me home.
Will I have it on pancakes?
No.

Friday, September 15, 2017

Changing Seasons

You asked what we will do with those hotter than hot peppers.
Absolutely.  Nothing. 
 Too hot for normal human consumption!
It was fun to grow them.  
We'll just have to leave it at that.


There is no doubt about it... fall is in the air!
I bought mums yesterday... soon, pumpkins.


Fall is my favorite time of year.
I love watching the subtle changes as they happen...


and then all of a sudden one day we look around and the whole world has changed...
greenery has turned to earthy tones of yellows, golds, oranges, rust, red and purple.


You've got to admit... it's almost magical how the world transforms
with the change of seasons.

It was such a good summer for the fruit and nut-bearing trees.
Our apple trees are loaded and the fruit is big and juicy.


The chestnut trees are also loaded this year.


This fact will most definitely please Ginger and MaryAnn...
whose favorite treat in all the world is chestnuts!
(even more than apples!)  


Those crazy muscovy ducks continue to make their morning sojourn to the barn.


They hang out with us while we work... snacking on the runner ducks' food and water.


Meanwhile, the shy runner ducks take off running...


and head for the woods.


As we move from the dry lot to the pig and sheep yards we are followed 
by three turkeys and three muscovies.


It's amazing how personable these birds can be...


they seem to just enjoy hanging around with us.


Of course, we are lots of fun... so who wouldn't?
At least that's what our dogs tell us.

The guinea babies have grown like weeds.


They are large enough to go out into their yard, 
and so, yesterday we opened their door.
(Hubbs had just built them a new exit ramp)


Did they venture outside?
 Of course not.


Instead, they spent their day hopping up and down into the nesting boxes in their brooder house.


I am hoping that a few of them eventually get a little curious.
If not, we will give them a little encouragement.

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