Friday, August 2, 2013

Of Wings And Horns And Beards

It's time to harvest hay again.
You might remember that the weather didn't cooperate for our first cutting,
so that cutting went to a local dairy farmer who could use the hay quickly...
before it got moldy from moisture.

Once this weekend's rain is over, 
we will be keeping our eyes on the weather forecast for a warm, dry streak.

In preparation for mowing, Sam and Oakley and I took a little time yesterday afternoon

to pull out milkweed plants that were growing in the hay.

Sam and Oakley watched...I weeded!

The hayfield has turned into a butterfly wonderland...
most likely due to the huge amount of clover growing there.

Every kind of Pennsylvania butterfly made an appearance,
except the monarch.

And now that I pulled out the milkweed, we might not be seeing
too many monarchs in the hayfield.

Sorry monarchs....but the horses don't like milkweed!

Sitting there watching the butterflies made me think about their
short, but amazing lives.
Pretty miraculous, really.

But then, so much of our beautiful world is miraculous, isn't it?

On the way back to the barn, we stopped to visit with the goats.
Smilin' Jill...

Handsome Smoochie...
gotta love those horns...

Adorable Dot...

Shy Sissy...

Little Miss Nettie B....

Inseparable Gracie and her mama Missy...

Just too tired to get up, O'Malley...
our only gal without horns or beard (she was born that way.)

It's not the whole herd, but just the ones who made an appearance.
Today we move the bucks to another pen.
Rotating pens, to let them rest for a while helps in
the battle against parasites.

Last night's dinner....
straight from the garden...

yummy spaghetti sauce.

There was enough for dinner with three quarts leftover to freeze.

Well, it's Friday again...
and my buddy Tyler will be here this weekend.
I'll tell you all about our fun on Monday.
Hope your weekend is everything you need it to be!!


  1. Wow, what an array of butterflies. They are amazing lil' creatures.
    Hope you enjoy your weekend and that you get some dry weather for haying!

  2. i am butterfly phobic! since i was a little kid, butterflies attack me. my kids think it is hysterical. i get hysterical. i must smell like butterfly food. i just took out the last of my sauce from last summer so it is time to start making more. have a great weekend...rain!

  3. Oh I love butterflies.. The photos you got are beautiful... Your goats are SO adorable and I bet each one has their own individual personality too. I just adore animals. All kinds.. Your sauce! Delicious!

  4. Bev-
    What did you mean by this comment?"Today we move the bucks to another pen. Rotating pens, to let them rest for a while helps in
    the battle against parasites."
    Parasites?? I have (5) goats. (3) males (2) are wethered and (1) just 6 months old and (2) females. I have had them for the last two years. I am in PA? I treat with food for intestinal parasites every 6 months and powder for thier coats. Should I be concerned with something else?
    Your vast knowledge for all that is farm is needed lol
    Thank you, Jude M.

  5. Happy weekend with your Tyler and all the Bee Haven fun!

  6. Butterflies, goats and homemade spaghetti sauce!! Life is good! So glad you share with us.

  7. Hi Jude...

    Because goats are extremely susceptible to intestinal parasites, we do all that you do...worming paste, another type of wormer in their water before moving them to another pen, medicated feed. But we have found that it also helps to rotate your pastures. Even better is to let another species of animal graze in the old pasture after moving. Parasites are not transmittable from species to species for the most part and so we let the horses graze down the goat pens after moving them to the next pen. We always have at least one pen "resting" without goats....and then keep moving our goats every couple of months.

  8. We have been incorporating many 'straight from the garden' items into our evening meals as well. Cannot beat it!

  9. Thank you for the info Bev. We have a 2 acre area fenced (plenty of space for (5)) for the goats so I am not certain if I can do that but I was thinking of cutting it in half and having them in each area every couple of months. Do you do medicated feed weekly or monthly?

  10. Your tomato sauce looks delicious! Are you able to provide an easy tomato sauce recipe? I've been searching for a good one!

  11. Jude...I think that cutting that pasture in half and rotating every couple of months would be a great idea. I feed Blue Seal meat goat (medicated) all of the time. That helps reduce the potential for coccidiosis and also has a supplement that helps reduce the incidence of kidney stones, which fainters are prone to...esp. the males. We use a paste wormer when we do vaccinations and hoof trimming...once, maybe twice a year.

  12. Sara, Here is how I make spaghetti sauce. I chop onions and peppers from the garden and sauté til tender in a large kettle in olive oil. Add fresh garlic (a whole bulb!) Then throw in all of the tomatoes that I have handy, chopped fresh basil, thyme, oregano, green olives and black olives, chopped and about a quarter cup of capers. I cook this mixture for a couple of hours and then add a can of organic tomato paste.
    I usually freeze or can as is and then add meat when we are ready to eat.

  13. Enjoy Tyler and all the excitement! I look forward to your photos!

  14. Great butterfly pictures..You have to weed the hayfield..My goodness..I realize that you want your hay to be as pure as possible..Home made spaghetti sauce. It's been a long time :) Enjoy your time with Tyler..I always get a kick out of Jills "smile" and Smootchie is indeed handsome..Til next time...

  15. Kept thinking I'd found my favourite photo and then another brilliant one would pop up - really lovely post.

  16. I enjoy reading your blog every day:) beautiful pictures! Have a great weekend!

  17. I'm seeing a lot of butterflies this year, and your gorgeous photos remind me that I need to try and get a few more of them!

    Enjoy your weekend!

  18. Love those beautiful. We don't have those kind here. Lovely. I can't imagine pulling all the clover out of the hay! Ugh...big job.


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