Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Time of transition

The past couple of days, it's been kind of dreary outside, dark, damp, humid. A good deal of the leaves have already just turned brown, or fallen to the ground. We are getting some color but I think it will be minimal this year, unless I get proven wrong, which I hope will be the case.

The high heat and humidity has made it difficult to do outside work still, it's been way too hot to start seriously cutting wood or even building. So we've been laying kind of low. We've had some company, and I've been working in the kitchen processing the two bushel baskets of apples we picked. 

Bandita enjoyed one yesterday...  


Then she rested on top of the couch, which is her favorite place.

until she had a visitor...

Does this look someone just did something really bad and doesn't want me to know? Talk about guilty looking.

Douglas loves Bandita. I mean he absolutely loves her.

and after a good kissing/cuddle fest with Douglas she decided to just relax with her apple.

On Monday, it was sunny outside and very hot. After chores were done, and in the heat of the afternoon, I did the very best thing I could think to do:

Makes sense doesn't it? The boys thought it was a good idea too, especially since they are both sun lovers.... well Douglas does go for the shade, but his brother Norman...

He can't get enough sun.

This morning most of the trees along the side of my barn dropped their leaves.

It looks really pretty from inside the barn.

This morning on her way out of the barn, Izzie the Jersey knocked the lid off one of the grain bins. In the few minutes it too me to come back, already there was a thief...

No sooner did I remove him than another one took his place.....

Everything is locked up again to protect from these burglars. They'll clean you out of house and home if you are not careful. 

This afternoon I checked trail cameras and moved a couple around to get a better view. The coyotes have been coming into the field next to my barn and goat yard every night. I have a camera there and have caught them, so we placed another one nearby to see what is going on. It's been driving the big dogs nuts, they are barking most of the night and at 5 AM the other morning the coyotes were going crazy in that field.

Otherwise we've caught the usual deer, some turkey vultures... But this picture I thought was too funny not to share:

This heron stopped by to check out the camera! The first one just made me laugh out loud.

Hopefully it will cool off soon, a little. We need to get to started on hauling in trees for our wood supply and I've got a lot of work in the barn to get organized for winter. The three ducks need to be moved in, the turkey pen needs some fixing, and... well, as you know, there is always a list!

Saturday, September 24, 2011

From the barnyard...


Max is pretty tired

watching a chipmunk

can you get that chipmunk for me?

One of the young gobblers


Some of the turkeys - there are more still!

Horace checking for fallen leaves

Buckwheat tasting a delicious fallen leaf


Izzie and Braveheart, best friends for ever... Braveheart is our blind ram, I guess they figured they have a lot in common... he follows her everywhere.

Basswood says, "Buckwheat, I really like your beard..."

Ohhh it's sooo soft... I wish I had a beard like this...

The colors are starting to change, slowly. It's been kind of dark and dreary out the past couple of days, so not great for picture taking.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

I have a serious problem

It's Gladys.

She follows me everywhere. She's been helping me work in the garden for some time now, and loves that I dig up worms for her and feed them to her.

Because of that, she thinks I've always got them. She goes everywhere I go... now she's taken to sitting on my hand like some kind of fancy falcon and she won't leave. She just sits there.

When I leave her to go do other work she gives me horribly sad looks and makes me feel terrible. If you have animals, you know the look I'm talking about.

I'm really not sure how to deal with this.

We dug some potatoes earlier, and she thought that was great fun because of course, we usually find worms. She even helped me dig. I couldn't help but laugh when Douglas sprawled out in the grass beside us and Gladys was digging like crazy in the same hole I was, me after potatoes, her after bugs.

Proud potato grower

I found her some corn that was leftover and gave her a treat.

Norman wanted some too

Got bugs?

After we decided to go for a walk and guess who decided to go as well?

She really likes the dogs, and I'm pretty sure she thinks she is one of them.

I have no doubt she thinks she should be in the house and she is probably planning on how she'll get in right now. Come to think of it, yesterday morning the living room door was open a crack and we couldn't explain why. It was probably her. One day we'll wake up and find her sitting on the couch watching TV eating watermelon.

We found this little guy on our way home from the garden... He wasn't really thrilled to see us.

This morning I woke up to a quiet house. No Quail talking, no Kakarikis. The Prairie dogs moved back into the living room from our sun room, where they spend a good deal of the summer nights by our bedroom. Usually they are up bright and early in the sun room and they wake us up running on their wheel. But not today.

They started waking up while I was making coffee. This is their usual routine inside, they are lazy, they sleep until we get up and they know there will be food and entertainment. (They love TV.)

As I was heading to the door with the little dogs, I noticed something peek around the side of the camper in the driveway.

A turkey. My first thought was "I know all of mine went in their coop last night" and then I realized of course, it was a wild one. So I waited a second before opening the door and letting the dogs out and in the meantime, about a dozen turkeys (hens) all went through the driveway and up the trail that runs along my goat yard fence. Me and the dogs went outside to their pee area and the turkeys came around our new loop road we built for our big camper.... we were about 50 feet from there, and they all followed it around and down one of our other trails. Douglas and Norman spotted them, but I stopped Norman from barking and Douglas just kind of looked at me like he wasn't shocked at all to see all these turkeys walking by.

It's been cooling off in the evenings, which is wonderful. We've had a couple small fires and yesterday Kevin split some wood and brought it to the house. There will be no need for full blown fires and most mornings have been too warm to warrant a fire, but the evenings are starting to call for a nice, small one.

We had a frost Friday night. I didn't notice until Saturday evening when my pumpkins looked like this:

and the creek is turning red and is in all it's glory:

We've been gone since Wednesday morning, we returned to the farm Friday night. We went down to Syracuse New York, and spent two nights at a hotel. We had a couple other reasons for going there, so we figured we would just make a little break out of it, which was great. It recharged the batteries.

Wednesday night we went to our favorite restaurant in Syracuse, the Clam Bar, it has the best seafood in the city. We stuffed ourselves. Kevin had steak, and I had blackened grouper, and we had oysters and clams. They have by far the best triple chocolate cake I've ever eaten. I rarely have desert out, but when I do, I never look twice at chocolate cake. I can't even describe this cake. It's just worth every bite.

Thursday night we went to the famous Dinosaur BBQ, which was on Man Vs Food and was voted America's Best BBQ spot on Good Morning America. It's a small place and they pack you in good. We waited in the bar area for about 1/2 hour which we were told was good, some people have waited 3 or more. Lots of talking, lots of people pushing and trying to get through. This was like being on another planet for me. Rarely am I in this kind of situation... I like my barn a lot better.

But I will say, it was worth the wait. We got a good seat, and the food was great. Kevin had ribs, which were the best thing we ate, and I had pulled pork and brisket.

We hit up my favorite used book store I've mentioned before and I stocked up on some winter reading. I'm so excited. I've already started reading one, it's called "Widow of the South" by Robert Hicks.

This one I'm really excited about... I didn't even read what it was about, just grabbed it, no questions asked!

It's time for evening chores. I forget that the nights are coming quicker now, it's dark earlier and it seems to come so suddenly instead of slowly now.

Jackson has been spending his days enjoying the last of the green grass by the house and in the evening he walks up to his yard and I put him to bed with his treats. I've noticed some of the goats have been getting pretty fuzzy, so the cold is on it's way. We winterized our small camper today and moved it which was a huge job, but it's out of the way now, so we can bring our woodbox in to start filling up. Hopefully tomorrow we'll be able to find time to pick some of our apples too.
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