Thursday, March 27, 2014

Tall in the Saddle

Here is our friend and horse trainer working a Mountain horse gelding for trail riding. It was a cool evening and the sun was setting in the west. Both were a bit camera shy but still neat to see. This horse has a great gait.

Oh Deer

Last month we seeded and fertilized our pasture. It is growing lush and tall. We took our horses off the pasture so it can grow. Then these deer showed up nibbling away at our green fields. Making our horses so jealous.

Stone Me Well

 Our original hand dug 1800's  well cap was crumbling. It was becoming a hazard to our livestock and visitors to our farm. So we decided to talk to Jeff Royer our friend and contractor. I wanted a round cap instead of a square one. And a metal lid for the well door for use if needed. So the demolition began this week. The heavy lid and the cap were broken and removed.

Lifting the old cement off the old well.

Measuring the old well and digging it back.

New Portland cement mix and flagstone.

Laying and hand cutting flagstone to fir the round cap.

Finished flagstone surround and waiting for the metal cap. The well is covered with wood until the cap is installed. The cap is a surprise coming soon.

Saturday, March 22, 2014

In Trenched

These are from last week and this project to get power and water to the chicken coop has been done. I am just behind with my photos. I was just happy to have it all come together after 3 years of by hand and hose and cords.

Our water softener drain line.

Our contractor and neighbor working out the trenches.

My husband filling in the trenches.

We have grass plugs growing on the mud now.

Thursday, March 13, 2014

Over the Hump

This was my Wednesday this past week. Got up at 7 to feed the farm, water the farm, load up the 2 boy rabbits to be fixed.Drove to the vets then the feed store to pick up fencing. 

Saw the neighbor painting his RV, reminded him about vet farm call at 3pm. 

The vet called early and was headed my way. Could I reach my neighbor to remind about his appointment? I was able to get my horse haltered and tied to the tree. Here is my 3 year old gelding waiting to have his teeth floated. He was not happy to be tied up but I was too busy to care. The vet came and we floated his teeth. I held Bean's head and the vet filed away.The sharp points were filed down so the horse could eat without wasting his grain.

Next I went to my neighbors to be there if he needed help with his cows. 

The vet was going to pregnancy check part of his herd.

Learned about cow chutes and how cows can choke in a chute.

All survived and no one was hurt. I went back home to clean the horse mouth blood off my gloves. Our vet was kind enough to bring our rabbits with him. Both boys are calmer and more relaxed now. I made a chick brooder box for incoming chicks.After this I was able to do indoor chores, cook dinner and a friend's son came over to get tutored in math. We finally had dinner at 9pm and then called it a day.

Can You Dig it?

We decided this was the last winter for us to run water hose and electric cords to the coop and horses.
We are having the lines dug and run to the coop.

The trenching was a gift in trade with a neighbor who has a backhoe. He is kind enough to dig where told by our contractor.

It took most of the day to do most of the trench digging. I was busy doing chores inside and outside. It was a perfect sunny day to do outdoor things.

Took three men to trench out the earth. We found huge earthworms and some old bricks. On Friday they should have most of the digging done and then the PVC, wire and water get put in. Yes, it will be nice to have water and power nearby.

Friday, March 7, 2014

The Burning Smell

I came home from running errands and saw smoke in my pasture and the horses were running around tossing their heads. It was thick and coming from the south. So I jumped into my UTV and headed off to find the source. It was my neighbor burning his pastures. The pasture was dry and the wind took the flames quick. They brought tanks of water to wet down the wildfires.

I watched to make sure she was not cornered. The wind was moving the flames toward her vehicle.

Watering down the big flames

Chem trails and smoke

A close up from my UTV. It is amazing how fast the flames move in an ever widening circle. They got it under control and the smoke died down at my place. Things you need to do if you want to clear a pasture. He is planning to turn over the soil, seed and feed and let it grow tall for his cows next year.

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Spring Around the Farm

The guinea tree is in full bud.

The dogs are waiting for their ticks. The snow is turning to mud.

The ducks are re-flooring the the pasture.

The ducks walking back to their unfrozen pond. The black duck is a Swede male and the tan one is a Khaki Campbell female.

Irish Duck

This is a male Cayuga duck.

We like the iridescent green feathers the breed had. The females sometimes lay black eggs their first season. The eggs become a lighter grey shortly after. The black color washes off the egg if rubbed. The yolk and shell are normal colors.

Phoenix Rooster

This is my one year old phoenix rooster. I saw him when he was younger at a friends farm. She was culling her extra roosters and he caught my eye. She said he had to go since he refused to come into the coop at night. She was able to catch him after two weeks. 
He was feral and refused to stay in my coop after three weeks of incarceration.However, the freeze came and he learned the coop was warm and dry. He now roosts in the coop with his hens. But in the mornings he goes far off into the woods to forage with his hens.

His tail is so pretty.

He has lost his tail to the fox a few times. But he always escapes to crow another day.

Burning Fun

The weather cooperated and it was the perfect time to burn some Asian grass that has been overtaking my front garden. I lit it with the butane and whoosh, two seconds later it was all gone.

I had the hose on and wet down the outside of the garden. The flames were higher than my house and then done, all the dry brush burned up. Now I have to dig the root balls out. A neighbor suggested I use a tractor. The roots are shallow but dense and tough to remove. It is a great grass to hide things and prevent erosion, but nothing eats it and it overtakes small areas.

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

No Dishy

Today was the day my new broken dishwasher was to get fixed. Kenmore Elite it ain't. I waited years to replace the old one and then months to get a repair man. Two weeks ago the repair man removed the pump from the new dishwasher. I got the call that because of the icy roads no repairs this week. I have to wait until next Monday to have the dishwasher fixed, maybe.I know this winter has been very long and very icy. I understand that is why no repairs can get done. Just frustrated a brand new dishwasher broke in the first place. The quality of appliances has truly dropped off. With the farm and eating homemade meals dishes stack up fast. Having a dishwasher saves me time and is a great luxury for my home keeping chores. If only I could get my ducks to do the dishes, well, perhaps not.

Monday, March 3, 2014

Ice Landia

This is what was given to me this morning by my dog. Zilla, a mole-sickle.
It was frozen to the cement.

Did you like my present?

There is a driveway under this snow, somewhere.

Had to dig out the farm truck and de-ice it for half and hour.It was so cold the melting ice froze back on to the truck and the windows. So glad we had the tarp over the main windshield.My other truck is still covered in ice and snow. I could not get my truck door open this morning. Parking in the sunlight is a good thing.

Torpedo Eggs

I do not know which hen it is, but she lays big pointy single yolk eggs that do not fit in an egg carton. I save these for my own kitchen recipes since these are so large. I am just happy to get eggs in this cold weather. I hope spring around the corner soon. This has been a very hard winter around the farm this time.

Osa the farm dog

Osa is our eldest shepherd. But she is our best tag along around the farm.
Osa kept me company and followed the tractor and my UTV. She was herding us around the pasture.

Here she has found a squirrel in a tree. She is hopping for a light snack.