Happy (?) Animals in the Snow

"Listen here, Daisy, if you even sniff at this old rotten duck egg I found in the snow, I'll rip your head off!"
“Listen here, Daisy, if you even sniff at this old rotten duck egg I found in the snow, I’ll rip your head off!”

Yes, there is bullying on the little farm. Scolding them in a slow teacher voice does nothing to stop it, so I carry on to the barn for a fun time in the snow with the goats, cat, ducks and chickens. Maybe I’ll get a good picture for Christmas cards!

"You're kidding, right?"
“You’re kidding, right?”

No Pixie. I’m not kidding. Snow is fun. The babies will LOVE it.

"I'm game!" says Mollie.
“I’m game!” says Mollie.
"What's this white stuff?" asks Phoebe. "I want to go home."
“What’s this white stuff?” asks Phoebe. “I want to go home.”
"I'm here, but I don't like it," says Kate.
“I’m here, but I don’t like it,” says Kate.
"Okay, I just got snow in my eye," Pixie grumbles. "Who's dumb idea was this?"
“Okay, I just got snow in my eye,” Pixie grumbles. “Who’s dumb idea was this?”

The photo shoot with the chickens gets cancelled. The chickens are being chickens. Oliver the cat is being a big baby.

"Everybody knows we cats hate weather."
“Everybody knows we cats hate weather.”

What about the ducks?

"I heart you," says Sophie.
“I heart you,” says Sophie.
"Let's not get gushy," says Ferdinand.
“Let’s not get gushy,” says Ferdinand.
"Now, Sophie, please keep up. The weather is getting quite treacherous . . . Sophie?"
“Now, Sophie, please keep up. The weather is getting quite treacherous . . . Sophie?”
"Here I am, Ferd," Sophie says.
“Here I am, Ferd,” Sophie says.
"So . . ." Ferdinand says, clearing his throat. "Maybe we should, you know, get married since we're already living together in the chicken coop." "Oh, Ferd . . ."
“So . . .” Ferdinand says, clearing his throat. “Maybe we should, you know, get married since we’re already living together in the chicken coop.”
“Oh, Ferd . . .”
"I like courting in the snow," Ferd says, gruffly. "And Sophie, I do love you, too. C'mon, I'll get you home safely."
“I like courting in the snow,” Ferd says, gruffly. “And Sophie, I do love you, too. C’mon, I’ll get you home safely.”

 

Worth 17 stings from angry honey bees

Worth 17 stings from angry honey bees

While my daughter and I obliviously sang embarrassing pop songs in the kitchen, my husband, sweating in his bee suit ran for the hills and into a far off forest with bees in hot pursuit. The honey tastes great though.

Oh Joy! Maple Syrup!

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We all love maple syrup, don’t we? I mean, isn’t it really worth it hauling gallons upon gallons of sap through slushy-uneven paths in the frosty air? I, for one, am always looking for a good neck and shoulder work-out. Maybe it would be a bit nicer if we weren’t ankle deep in cold mud as we tend the fire, but who cares?! We’re outdoors getting a winter sunburn off the melting snow’s reflection and that’s cool. I look better with freckles. So, the first week is great. Hey, we’re like the Indians making syrup. Second week–massive sap producer–great? Well, depends if you really like mud and cold. But, there is the final week. It’s when you remember that you suggested making syrup in the first place–from one tree maybe. You’re husband who wants to please you and loves projects, scopes out every tree on the property, does the research and turns the whole thing into an operation–a huge declaration of crazy love. Hmm. Kind of nice, that. So you buck up and sit at the fire and by now spring is coming on and the peepers begin to sing and you know that means the “frog run” has come–the final sap run of the season and you think of all the cakes and the Brussels sprouts you’ll eat with syrup and you’re pretty glad you have a great husband.

Dog Love

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So last year the little red baby fox that we thought was so cute brought his family to eat our chickens. The death and destruction wasn’t cute, but the fox, peeking his head over our compost heap, panting excitedly for bloody chicken still was kind of adorable. What to do? Someone mean in the family suggested a gun but that wouldn’t be a fair fight and I’ve often heard that new foxes take the place of the old. You probably know where this is going, right? I found a dog on craigslist. Not just any dog but a Maremma. What’s a Maremma, you ask? It’s basically a big white dog who loves his own people, but is a bit iffy with others (especially vets who are afraid of them). Nala (Beloved in Swahili) was supposed to be an outside dog . . . but after she chased off the foxes my husband said her job was done and her reward was sleeping in our bed. This is becoming a pattern. My  husband tells the rest of us that every animal must have a purpose and then he brings home a useless retired dairy goat who winked at him or something. Now we have Nala and her fur on the couch, but I will say that I think it’s a great thing to have a softy of a husband.

Sex, drugs and that’s just the animals!

Okay, so life is about second chances. Cliched but true. Never would have guessed that my childhood dreams of being Laura Ingalls Wilder would be reawakened when an ex-military can-do sort of guy walked into my life and whisked me away to the country to write and homestead. Of course Laura’s life was probably a bit more pure–or is that the good old Victorian standards of privacy? This won’t be a blog about sex–unless it’s between two goats or something, but I hope it will give hope to anyone out there that it’s never too late and that life can be filled with love and adventure at any age! Thanks dearest husband and the big man in the sky.