Keeping on keeping on

What a sight for sore eyes! I was really worried about these two. I mean, really really worried, especially about Fiona. She kept herself separate from the flock, stayed way back in what we’d been calling the jail, and we didn’t have to chase her or anything to keep dosing her up with wormers and B vitamins and an iron drench and garlic and everything else we could think of. Then the vet’s office finally got in the Levasol tablets, and with one dose of that, look who showed up. Man. Fiona is one of the two ewes that we started our flock with, and has continually had girls (except for Buster last year and this year’s monster single), so her genes are over half our flock. She’s such a grand elegant lady that I’m so glad she seems to be on the mend.

The rest of the sheep are remaining little houdinis. It has been non-stop rain, so we haven’t been able to do any fencing at all, even with Bucky’s help. But some friends of ours gave us five rolls of really nice woven wire and we bought six foot t-posts, so that should get us somewhere. I’ve been trying to strategically place electronet just to keep them out of my gardens, with limited effect. Kaytla, my leader ewe, can figure out how to circumvent my mazes in about two minutes. Everytime I think I’ve come up with another plan, I’ll look up from the kitchen to see her and her two boys happily eating my flowers. Then they camp out under the deck in back until I lure them in with another plan.

Grazing sheep Most everyone else stays put unless they follow her out like they did again this morning. (Arg!) That hill they are on has a good fence on one side, but is completely open to that old 20-acre abandoned beaver swamp, which we would really like to turn into pasture. There have been some brave souls venturing out there, most notably Minx and Miguel. There’s enough browsing there to keep them fed all year, but it is a pretty scary place, with much of it over their head. That whole hill was only cleared last fall and planted this spring, so we hate to have them there at all yet, but we haven’t a choice since the Marlborough Other People’s Pasture thing was so coyote ridden this year.

Get out of the way, the whey is here! The pigs are doing great, now that we’ve got them out on the back pasture where we wanted them. I made cheese all day yesterday, and brought the whey out to them several times. Now they hear the back sliding door open and come running! I need to remember to buy some whole corn the next time we go into town to put around the stumps. They are doing great things down there, but I’d like a little more action on the stumping, please. Unlike the sheep, they stay put inside the electronet, thankfully. When I sell weaners next year, I will be sure that all of them are trained to electronet for sure. It would have been so much easier with these guys had they been this good when we first got them.

Icelandic chickies The two surviving chickies are doing well. I can’t believe I have to listen to the constant cheep cheep of them all over again, but oh well. They are really cute. If I really want them to please. shut. up! I just let them burrow under my ears and they fall instantly asleep.

Oh, and I found Peeper in the coop last night, in one of the egg baskets, which makes me feel so much better. She’d been getting harder and harder to catch in the evenings, preferring to go under the front porch instead of into her cage, and with whatever got the mama and babies the other day still unidentified, I was really worried about her. Not that I know she’s a her, but I’m choosing to think so. I want to be able to keep her, and we do NOT need any more roosters. The boys from that first batch are definitely ready for the freezer, as soon as we decide that we are ready to tackle that task.

All wet from the rain I hope the rains end soon. I want to get back to clearing the bedding with the tractor like I did all weekend, because that’s where we are going to have a paddock for the horses. I so want to bring Pearl and Polly home. It’s expensive to keep them where they are ($10 a day!), and Polly is such a doll that I can’t stand not having her here! Prince really misses them, too. The New England harnesses arrived (finally!) yesterday, and I’m hoping we can hitch him up and at least do a little ground driving with him this weekend, maybe pull a log or two.

Just a thing or two on our plates!

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