Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Here We Go....

"O' Tannenbaum, O' Tannenbaum....how tasty are thy branches!"

The goats are enjoying their pine tree snacks!

Good breath for everyone!

Even the sheep have almost finished off their tree.

We'll leave the trees in their yard until Spring...

they serve a dual purpose...
scratching post and shedding tool!

Yesterday while feeding, I noticed that Star (our older Nigerian Dwarf goat)
has an odd looking udder.

Even Stella was concerned!

I'll have Dr. Becky take a look at it....
 and hopefully it is nothing for concern.

She's been acting normal...eating fine and getting the normal amount of exercise...
so I am guessing that nothing hurts her.

If only our animal friend could talk.
Then again... maybe not... I'd never get any peace around here!!

For example...

Sam:  "Mom.  Hey, Mom.  Mooooooooooommmm..."

"Let's go home.  I need a nap!"

See what I mean?

Monday, January 16, 2017

A Change of Plans

Sadly, this past weekend came off quite differently than planned.
I found myself laid low...

and unable to spend the weekend with this little one.

Instead of a visit from Mackenzie, I had a visit from Sam-n-Ella...

and they over-stayed their welcome!

I am guessing I suffered from a food-borne illness, as Hubbs had no signs
of the bug after more than 48 hours exposure to me.
I had eaten a store-made cheese spread that he did not.
(I'll never eat it again!)

Anyways, it knocked me right out of the weekend.
By yesterday I was just getting my feet on the ground again.

It's all up from here!

And some good news...
Jury Duty was cancelled!!!

Friday, January 13, 2017

Random Offerings

Ole Man Winter left us yesterday.
Yes, he took a day off.
And in his absence, the temperature shot up to 58 degrees.
Warm...and oh so muddy!

All of the snow and ice melted and became mud
(not sure which is better!)

Everyone stood around wondering how to take off their winter coats.

Guineas were confused.

"Is winter over?"

Roosters felt a little "randy!"

Roo sees hen in woods...

Roo "tackles" hen (as Tyler calls "it")...

Roo runs away with another hen...

"Ah, it's good to be King."

Trimming the tree....

We recycle EVERYTHING!!!

And then there was Oakley...

who when I asked to give me his best smile, produced this...

He hates having his picture taken... silly, sweet old man!
He is seriously The Best Dog in the history of the world...maybe even the universe!

Since the holidays, I have been going room by room and 
sprucing things up a bit.
Here is the guest room... ready for your visit!
(you can always enlarge photos by clicking on them)

In shades of grey and white...
Life is good!

"Follow your heart!"

A few of my favorite things...

My most favorite... a hand-carved, hand built from old cigar boxes, Victorian dollhouse...
built for my Mom by her uncle...
(sitting atop my grandmothers old treadle sewing machine)

An old metal milk crate used as storage for guest towels...

I found this old enamelware lampshade and attached it to a pendant light 

and hung it with an old pulley...

I love decorating with antiques.
These are things that were built to last...
and have definitely stood the test of time.

Happy Friday the 13th....may your day be filled with lots of good luck!!
Ohhhh, and this weekend is going to be very exciting.  
Mackenzie is coming to stay at the farm for the weekend!

Thursday, January 12, 2017

The Beauty of Calm

The rooster situation has calmed down for the time being.

Separation has prevented any further disagreements.
Wounds are healing... although with scabs all over their combs and wattles,
these two handsome roosters are looking pretty wretched.

One Roo is living with Lucile in the spare barn stall.
They seem to be getting along just fine...
spending the cold nights together beneath their heat lamp.

Lucille has adopted an open bag of shavings as her nest.
She's on strike, however, and has produced no eggs in weeks.
(Probably in protest of the current roommate situation!)

After "fixing" rooster situations, it's always nice to spend a little time
in one area of the farm where there is never any drama!

I can always count on a visit with Gracie and the girls to be peaceful
and calm.

Sheep are just about the easiest animals to deal with.
Their needs are few... shelter from severe weather, grass (or hay),
a protein/mineral block, and plenty of fresh water.

Given these....and sheep are perfectly content.

The girls have an extra treat to nibble on these days...
one of the Christmas trees.

This is the first year we have given the sheep a tree...
usually the goats consume all of the trees.
I have noticed, though, that given the choice of grazing on grass or 
eating shrubbery.... the sheep always choose shrubbery, or brambles, or low-lying branches.
So, when it came time to divvy out the trees... we thought, "why not!"

I must admit, however, these girls are a little picky with their hay...
and comb through their offerings picking out just the right pieces and leaving the rest behind.

Luckily, what the sheep won't eat, the horses will.
When it comes to hay... our horses are not picky at all.

I took this picture of the dry lot yesterday afternoon.
You'll notice it is still covered in snow and ice.
The temperature in the city reached 48 yesterday...
however here in the hills of the countryside it didn't warm up that much.

Today it is to be almost 60 degrees in the city.
It will be interesting to see how warm it gets here.

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Yesterday Was "For The Birds!"

It snowed yesterday.

After a brief fiery sunrise, 

the clouds thickened and the snow soon began to fall.

Standing inside my window, looking out at the bird feeder...

it occurred to me how much like birds we people are when it snows.

Just like we humans flocking to the grocery store for bread and milk....
(will we die without these two items?)
the birds flock to the feeder as if it might be their last meal!

The bird feeder was filled to the max...

with more birds waiting in the trees...

and in the bushes.

Even the Cardinals, who are usually quite territorial,
set aside their protective tendencies

and tolerated each others' presence, taking turns flitting onto the feeders.

A Bluejay, who by nature is a ground feeder,

flew from tree branch to feeder several times....

taking his seeds back to the tree to crack open and eat.

All of the typical species of winter bird was present...
Goldfinches, House Finches, Purple Finches, Black-capped Chickadees,

Tufted Titmice,

 Nuthatches, Cardinals (3 male and 3 female), Bluejay,
as well as downey woodpeckers...

and red-bellied woodpeckers.

I left the farm when the snow stopped 

and ran a few miles away to a farm store
for beef cubes (it was the perfect day for beef stew).
On my way home, I noticed this fellow in a field...

I stopped the car and took a few photos.

He's a Short Eared Owl.

First one of his kind that I have ever seen!
They can only be found in Pennsylvania in the winter months...
preferring the habitat of open fields.

If nothing else, yesterday convinced me how important it is to always have my camera with me!


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