I was really worried about the whole farm, last night. Bjarki and Disa joined Maggie outside all night last night, all three of them barking their fool heads off the entire night. The full moon had coyotes howling, but much farther away from here than the time the pack attacked the pigs, luckily. Maggie’s bark is pretty impressive! She’s such a happy girl when I first come out in the morning. The way she runs up to me, past me, around me, giddy with excitement, is just precious. We so like having her around. She’s even becoming helpful in moving Danny to the shed at night. Last night, he had all three dogs urging him along, and Maggie kept looking at me to be sure this is what I wanted. I do indeed! He’s even really understanding the plan on his own, to be honest. One time last week we found him in the shed at bedtime voluntarily. Score.
When I show up at the shed to milk Elly, where she’s waiting for me next to Danny, usually bellowing loudly, of course, the geese are waiting for me, too. They stay in the shed nearly the entire time I’m milking, quietly chatting with me and grooming me. They want to make sure that I don’t have bugs in my long hair, you know. If my hair is braided, it is usually almost completely unbraided by the time I’m finished. They don’t approve. I so like my geese. I’d heard from so many people that geese are impossible to keep friendly, but all the attention I put into them has really paid off. A fellow farmer called the geese she just ate “hose-necked bastards”, heh. Not mine! But it really was a lot of work. I can’t wait to see if we get goslings this Spring.
After I finish milking, I let the chickens out of the coop. The morning rush always makes me smile. Most of them rush over to the back of the truck, to see if there are any treats left over from the pig slop. They are awful on plastic bags, and will open up any they find, making it a bit tricky for me to stay clean while feeding the pigs. I gather eggs, fill water troughs, fill grain buckets, count heads. We still have quite a number of cockerels in the flock which we really need to dispatch to freezer camp, but just ran out of steam when we slaughtered before Thanksgiving. Soon. Very soon.
All three dogs follow me down to feed the pigs. Disa always thinks I should stop along the way to throw her stick. Did you know we have sticks out here? Maggie loves the morning routine, where she’s allowed to run around out from behind the fence she’s normally kept in. Bjarki has to be watched really carefully, because if I get too distracted feeding the pigs, he’ll take his ball and head off to the village where he can find someone to finally throw it for him. Oy.
All in all, it takes me about two hours to do all the morning chores when I’m home alone and Frank is in Cambridge. I’ve really become quite the happy morning person and I think it just can’t be helped. The farm is a happy, happy place, especially in the morning, and it’s very contagious.