Shuffling Life and Animals Around

After the drakes went wild this spring along with the roosters we found most of them new homes and breathed a sigh of relief, but then Oliver our cat brought us this little gift:


Some people told us to just put it somewhere in the woods to die, but I couldn’t–knowing kitty was lurking. Actually it was our dog Nala who I first spotted with the duckling (about a day old at the time) in her mouth with a guilty look. She dropped it and I scooped it up.

After a day or two experimenting with duck language the little thing began to talk to me–and still does. It likes to be cuddled too. I’ll release it once it gets it’s feathers (if it wants to leave).

Our one goat has a staph infection and can’t nurse her baby until the round of penicillin ends. Here’s a fuzzy pic of her baby. It almost looks like a painting to me:


Speaking of blur, life has been speeding along. Our foster girl is talking about being adopted a lot (a good thing since that’s the plan). Hippotherapy has been a great thing for her. Her PTSD behaviors have diminished greatly. I just love going to be with the horses:


There’s tons of weeding to be done but it’s too hot and I need a break from the farm work and kid work¬† for today so I’ll just enjoy the flowers and pretend not to see the weeds.

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Not To Worry


037On a recent dry and sunny September day I surveyed yet again my overgrown gardens, unpicked vegetables and my dogs in need of grooming. Weeks had passed with so many human things to do and problems to solve. The flurry of visits were long over and the tomato plants were well past their prime. Buckets and buckets of vibrant, softening tomatoes mixed with the last green fruit of the season and fruit flies hinted that if something wasn’t done soon the husk cherries would be gobbled up by tiny invaders.


Oliver the cat yawned. Don’t worry, he seemed to say. You’ve made it this far and the shelves are filled with salsa and sauce. Calm down. Time to look at the flowers before the frost ends their lovely little lives.

Country Living: Morning on the Farm

A volunteer sunflower in the raised bed.
A volunteer sunflower in the raised bed.
Misty morning in the vegetable garden.
Misty morning in the vegetable garden.

When everyone else is asleep I walk the garden on a rare sunny morning. I didn’t plant the sunflower. A bird did. Thank you, bird.

No two days are alike in the country. Everything is fleeting and many things are lovely. But there are worries. Too many worms in a goat’s gut and they’re dead. Not enough in a garden and maybe there’s a problem.

After weeks of rain everything smells fresh and feels mushy. Only one cup of coffee into the day but by the time I walk down to the quiet barn I’m awake. The big ducks quack in their house and the small ducks and chickens chirp-chirp around their feeder patiently until I open the coop hatch. Mother hen and her charges are the first out.

Have you ever felt like your kids were switched at birth? (they were)
Have you ever felt like your kids were switched at birth? (they were)

The Buff Orpingtons we’re raising for a friend (in exchange for turkeys) bound out the door next. I call, “Claire-Claire” as I enter the coop and greet our friendly Dominique chick. She came to us with curled feet. We tried splints and bandages but she refused them and the other chicks attacked her so she gets by with plucky¬† can-do attitude that makes me love her more. She will be spoiled–especially since she comes when called.

The b’hoys, Luke Cafferty, Matt Saracen and Tim Riggins cry out. They’re starved, they say.

Food, food, we want food! (and a little affection if you don't mind).
Food, food, we want food! (and a little affection if you don’t mind).

What’s that bumping up against my leg? You ducks! Wanting to bully the goats for their food–and you’ll win, won’t you! One day I’ll make the ducks behave–not. Every day is different in the country but ducks never behave.

The ducks have discovered goat feed is great.
The ducks have discovered goat feed is great.

A Morning with Cows

I love the smell of manure in the morning.
I love the smell of manure in the morning.

Every year we look forward to our cow manure harvest just after the spring thaw with its muck moves north. Our good neighbor lets us take as much as we like. This year my husband brought only two shovels for three people (himself, son and me). He said I was no use to him with the cows about since I’d spend more time looking at them. And so it’s true.