Tag Archives: animals

A Taste of Frigid Weather

I don’t like being unprepared for much of anything but the last two weeks or so of frigid air gave me a real kick in the pants!  We have been used to teens and single digit weather but not with 20 – 45 mile an hour winds.  We were able to keep the house good and warm but had to keep heaters in the cellar and laundry room around in the clock.  We didn’t have any frozen water pipes or lose any of the valuable canned goods.

We did however have to keep chopping holes in the streams that water our cattle.  We had to move two herds due to the mountain springs freezing solid and the feed we gave them was increased by an extra roll of hay each day, giving the two larger herds three round bales and the heifers two.  The heifers and bulls  were given corn gluten every other day.

January 3rd we went to Rural King to pick up salt and feed for the chickens and he bought me a new insulated barn coat and insulated bib coveralls!!!  Along with the Extreme socks Heather bought me for Christmas, the flannel lined jeans Shawn got me and these from Eddie the winter weather coming would not be taking hold of me!!!!

First pair of flannel lined jeans I’ve ever had and they are so comfortable.

Flannel-lined jeans, heavy flannel shirt, black under armor, insulated flannel lined bibs and a wonderful insulated hooded barn coat.

 

 

 

 

 

 

I know how the Pillsbury Dough Boy  feels now, waddling around!!!!

January 5th was the worst day and the pickup wouldn’t start, the big tractor fuel was frozen and wouldn’t start, and we used the small Kubota until the hydraulics froze up.  At this point the cattle were fed the old fashioned way by using 15 square bales of hay loaded onto the old Dodge pickup for the larger herds and 10 square bales to the heifers.  We keep bales of hay in the loft of the bull barn for the bulls and they were fed hay and grain.  I had filled up the firewood on the porch and in the house and was constantly chucking it into the woodstoves.  I made a huge pot of soup on the stove and our bodies stayed warm and full on the inside!!! The chickens and rabbits were checked hourly along with Mischief, our coon hound and all were given fresh warm water. Mischief stayed wadded up in her house with enormous batts of hay! We had been feeding her extra food to keep some fat on for just this kind of weather. We take good care of all of our animals. The temperature that day finally reached 12* but the wind was raging and expecting to last through noon Saturday.  With the wind chill the last few days our temps were ranging from -12* to 0*.   Mr. Caldwell was working on thawing the tractor all day in the frigid cold and wind!

Finally on Monday we were able to get out and do some extra winterizing to prepare for the next onset which might be within the next week!

The chickens are out and able to free range again although there isn’t much grass for them to find and they love anything green.

Cleome staying in her warm nesting box loaded with fresh hay.

Marigold is doing the same but she comes out more than Cleome.

Sebastian has two sections to his hutch. When the wind is howling you won’t catch him out in this open area of his hutch.

During the storm they didn’t have this loose hay out in the open part of their hutches but they will now until spring. There is one area of their hutches that has no hay and that’s because it’s their “potty” area behind their nesting boxes..

Marigold likes to sit on top of her box a lot but didn’t during the bad weather! It’s unbelievable how Mother Nature had provided them with such luxiourious fur coats for the winter.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

So with the rabbits taken care of before the next batch of frigid weather, I went straight to the hen house.  Extra bedding was put in their nests to help keep the eggs from freezing.  There’s not much I can do with their water freezing except take them warm water more often.  Hopefully in the spring the electricity will be added to their house but this new house is much warmer and cleaner than the old one.

The chickens are out and able to free range again although there isn’t much grass for them to find and they love anything green.

The hens belong to this cinder-block building now. It’s warm, easier to clean because it has openings along the lower end of the shed to clean out under the roosts with a pressure hose. It’s cool in the summer and warm in the winter UNLESS it gets in the 20 degree range or lower.

We have a frost-free spigot outside of the building to get their water. No more hauling jugs of water up the hill behind the house anymore!!

We have 36 hens now and Eddie put 14 nesting boxes so that everyone will have plenty of room to provide us with wonderful farm fresh eggs.

There’s no crowding on the roosts but chickens are the worst for having a pecking order.

Yesterday I put a layer of fresh hay on the floor for the older girls to sit in during the day. These ladies are all four to five years old and don’t lay much but they’re my girls so they get preferential treatment.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I use a metal pan for their water so that when it freezes I can take it outside, pour a little hot water over the bottom and the ice pops right out.  I do carry a jug of hot water with me when I go check the water for the rabbits, chickens and the dog.  They love that warm water to warm their insides!  I’m keeping the rabbits and the chickens feed bowls full.  If they have plenty to eat their fat stores will help to keep them warm.

Now that the animals are better prepped for the frigid air to return it was time to fill up the porch with two types of firewood.

The east end of the porch has well seasoned firewood. I put one end of a 9 x 12 tarp down on the porch and place the wood on top of it. This protects the porch and the leftover end of the tarp is pulled up over the wood and held in place with extra sticks of wood and bungee cords. The stack when full if about five feet high and fills the eight feet length of the end of the porch.

The west end of the porch has the same amount of wood but this has not seasoned as much and we use it at night to hold the fire for several hours. It’s heavier because it’s not been cut and split as long, is dry but not as dry as the other wood. We don’t have to worry as much about Flue fires with seasoned wood and there’s been a lot of complete home losses in Virginia this year due to fires!

We have two piles of wood outside and one is seasoned, split and covered.  The other is dried but not fully seasoned and not split.  We have plenty more in the woods ready to take down and bring in to the house.

We keep a large rack of firewood in the house beside the stove (about 18-24 inches away from the stove so we won’t have to go out everytime we need to fill the stove.

 

 

 

We have two large ponds on the property and both have 8-10 inches of ice on them now but the overflows water the heifers and the bulls. The other cattle now get their water from some lowland springs that rarely go dry but we have to watch them because with the weather we were having they will freeze and have to be broken up a few times a day.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We’ve made it through the first of the really cold winter weather but we’re ready for the worst to come in the next three months.  Between now and then I’ll sit with my new seed catalogs and prepare for what we all hope to be an early spring!!   When we expect high winds and possible power outages I keep plenty of buckets of water in the laundry room for flushing the toilets and several gallon jugs of water for cooking and hand-washing.  We keep supplies of candles, oil lamps and matches on hand and small wood on the side porch for the wood cook stove.  Four small tanks of propane are always full to heat the laundry room (holds our main source of water pipes) and the cellar.

Stay warm and don’t forget to prepare for the next winter hit of weather!

I need taller boots

We’re in our second winter snowstorm and I have got to get taller boots. Mine are 9.5 inches tall and when I went to feed Miracle this morning it was over my boots.

These are my Tractor Supply boots that I love and wear year round on the farm.  They're 9 1/2 inches tall and they're lightly insulated.  I've had them for three years and one of them is starting to leak.

These are my Tractor Supply boots that I love and wear year round on the farm. They’re 9 1/2 inches tall and they’re lightly insulated. I’ve had them for three years and one of them is starting to leak.

Hubby says it’s over the boots because of the way I walk in the fresh snow and scoot it in front of me. I still need taller boots if this is going to continue through spring!  The next ones I get in the spring will be up to my knees, I think.

It started snowing here again last night before dark and hubby says we have 8 inches now but it was still pouring down snow when I started this post.  It’s supposed to turn to sleet and freezing rain and then rain all day tomorrow.  We woke up to 18* and it’s now 22* .  The snow is like powder and we’re so glad the wind had not gotten up yet.2nd Snowstorm 2016_Feb 15 (1) 2nd Snowstorm 2016_Feb 15 (2) 2nd Snowstorm 2016_Feb 15 (4) 2nd Snowstorm 2016_Feb 15 (5) 2nd Snowstorm 2016_Feb 15 (6) 2nd Snowstorm 2016_Feb 15 (7) 2nd Snowstorm 2016_Feb 15 (8) 2nd Snowstorm 2016_Feb 15 (9)

Hubby got the snowblower out while  I fed the calf and had me a 48 inch path to the chickens and the smokehouse.  I’ve swept the porch and steps off three times so far but Sassy has decided to stay in the house this morning.  She went out for a quick potty break and fled back to the house!

Sassy likes her bed during storms.

Sassy likes her bed during storms.

Hubby is out feeding the stock now and the powder snow makes it hard to roll out the bales but everyone is waiting for some food to warm up their insides!

Feeding calves during snowstorm 02152016 (3) Feeding calves during snowstorm 02152016 (2) Feeding calves during snowstorm 02152016 (1)

The snow has stopped now and we’re waiting for the sleet and rain.  All of the cattle are doing well and my chickens are warm and been fed well and have plenty of  warm water.  The wild birds now have plenty of seed on the ground after I swept the snow away from the feeders.IMG_0009 IMG_0011 IMG_0015 IMG_0025 IMG_0021 IMG_0018

I’ve prepared a roast in the crockpot with onions and celery and will make a gravy over it later and serve it over noodles for supper and some fresh bread.  The laundry is almost done and the wood has been brought in for this evening warmth.

Firewood stand full of oak, locust and wild cheery.  Toasty night to come.

Firewood stand full of oak, locust and wild cheery. Toasty night to come.

Venison tenderloin in the crockpot smothered with onions and celery.  I'll make a mushroom & onion gravy over it once the loin is tender.

Venison tenderloin in the crockpot smothered with onions and celery. I’ll make a mushroom & onion gravy over it once the loin is tender.

Once the sleet/rain/ice arrives we may lose power but we’ve learned after 44 years of marriage to be prepared for it.  All of the buckets in the laundry room are full of water for the bathroom, 12 gallon jugs are full of water for cooking and whatever else it’s needed for and the candles and flashlights are where they’re easily accessible.

Hope you are all warm and safe!  Spring is just around the corner!

SPRING!!!  CAN'T GET HERE SOON ENOUGH!

SPRING!!! CAN’T GET HERE SOON ENOUGH!

 

January 2016 Big Snow

It’s been a while since folks in our area have seen a storm like we had this week. I’ve got some time lapsed snow storm pictures to show everyone including Robin Reed our wonderful meteorologist.

January 21st - day before the snow started.

January 21st – day before the snow started.

January 22 - Snow started falling sometime before 6:30 a.m. It started heavy and then by mid afternoon it quit.

January 22 – Snow started falling sometime before 6:30 a.m. It started heavy and then by mid afternoon it quit.

January 23rd - We got about 6-7 inches the day before and woke up to this on the 23rd. The wind is howling and the wind chills were in the single digits most of the day and night.

January 23rd – We got about 6-7 inches the day before and woke up to this on the 23rd. The wind is howling and the wind chills were in the single digits most of the day and night.

Today this wind is very limited, the snow has quit falling the and the beautiful fun is shining.

Today this wind is very limited, the snow has quit falling the and the beautiful fun is shining.

All of the outside animals are doing fine but cold.  Eddie is trying to feed the round bales but they won’t roll out because the snow is so dry so he’s feeding the cows 6-7 bales instead of the normal 2-3.  The snow drifts are up over the cows bellies but the blessing is there are no babies due until March and April.

Prissy and George are doing well and taking care of Miracle.  They tend to lay on the side of the haybale away from the wind.  If not for the older orphans Miracle would have a time getting through the snow because it’s over her belly!

Here’s some more scenes of the last three days from the front porch and the kitchen window:

Visibility outside is almost non-existent with the wind blowing the snow but this guy found the bird/squirrel feeder.

Visibility outside is almost non-existent with the wind blowing the snow but this guy found the bird/squirrel feeder.

The feeder is full of scratch feed and peanuts.

The feeder is full of scratch feed and peanuts.

January 24 2016 (1)

January 23 2016 (9)

January 22 2016 (18)

January 22 2016 (14)

January 24 2016 (2)

I'll have to wait for the snowblower to come through the yard because the yard is drifted over my knees.

I’ll have to wait for the snowblower to come through the yard because the yard is drifted over my knees.

Look at that beautiful blue sky!!

Look at that beautiful blue sky!!

Beauty of nature at its best!

Beauty of nature at its best!

Can’t wait to get to the henhouse and check on the girls, Rooster and Fred!  Roscoe may even come out of hibernation with this beautiful sun shining and the temperature has already risen to 30 degrees.  I’ve been watching the orphan calves this morning and Miracle tends to stay between Prissy and George for their body heat.

Stay warm everyone and pray this will be the ONLY storm we have this winter even though it’s only January!!

Baby, it’s cold outside!!!

This is our outdoor weather station that I got hubby for his birthday.

This is our outdoor weather station that I got hubby for his birthday.

We named him Robin Reed after our local weather forecaster.

We named him Robin Reed after our local weather forecaster.

Our pond had about a two inches of ice on it and now there's patches of snow on top of the ice.

Our pond had about a two inches of ice on it and now there’s patches of snow on top of the ice.

My wood pile is disappearing and I'm the only one using it!

My wood pile is disappearing and I’m the only one using it!

Clear blues skies on Wednesday, January 13, 2016!

Clear blues skies on Wednesday, January 13, 2016!

Hubby's new weather station.  It's been used more than any he's ever had.

Hubby’s new weather station. It’s been used more than any he’s ever had.

Yes, it’s wintertime and it’s supposed to be cold but darn it we just got teased really bad with 50 and 60 degree weather and my body is just not liking this one bit!  I can stand the cold if there’s sunshine to go along with it but that wind is wicked!!  My son thinks I’m a wimp but one of these days he’ll understand where I’m coming from. Right, Shawn???

I know I have to stick it out for at least three or four more months so I guess I’ll be quilting, crocheting, reading, cooking, embroidering, and blogging a lot to keep me occupied for a while.  I’ll be making hourly trips to the henhouse for eggs and taking them warm water.  I’ll be checking in on Roscoe three or four times a day and making sure he’s okay with just his fur coat and watching to make sure hubby’s hounds will have plenty of protein for food and hay in their boxes for warmth.  We have their houses facing the morning sun to keep them warm as well.  Mother Nature will take care of everything else.

Now, to find my seed catalogs and make a list!!!

Retirement adventure #1 – Dismal Falls

Well it’s been two months of retirement and I stay so busy.  Hubby and I have decided to try to make a point of taking a day trip alone at least once a month and I wanted to share our “1st Retirement Adventure” with you.  I packed a lunch and we loaded up the cameras and took off for natures beauty that surrounds us that I either had not seen or it had been a long time.  Our first trip was to Giles County and a little place called “Dismal Falls”.  I hope these photos express my awe at the beautiful little spot in the woods that is hidden just off Route 100 and on a forestry road.

Dismal Falls view from the top of the path leading from the road.

Dismal Falls view from the top of the path leading from the road.

Sign beside the forestry road.

Sign beside the forestry road.

There was a large variety of wild mushrooms on the path including these which we call woodfish. We gather these in the fall, flour and fry them up. DELICIOUS!

There was a large variety of wild mushrooms on the path including these which we call woodfish. We gather these in the fall, flour and fry them up. DELICIOUS!

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Path we used to get down to the falls.

Path we used to get down to the falls.

Beautiful open forest leading to the falls.

Beautiful open forest leading to the falls.

Eddie overlooking the falls and creek below.

Eddie overlooking the falls and creek below.

Eddie waiting on me to catch up because I was taking so many pictures.

Eddie waiting on me to catch up because I was taking so many pictures.

This overhang is used a lot by hikers and visitors. There was a fire pit under the rocks and easy to get under without banging your head.

This overhang is used a lot by hikers and visitors. There was a fire pit under the rocks and easy to get under without banging your head.

Rock steps leading down to the water and bottom of the falls.

Rock steps leading down to the water and bottom of the falls.

Firepit under the rocks.

Firepit under the rocks.

The following are views of the water leading to the falls, below the falls, and the falls.  The water is as clear as glass and icy cold.  Normally, this time of year there’s not a lot of water in the falls but because of the rains we’ve had all spring and summer they were beautiful.  We plan to go back when the weather is cold and the water may be frozen.  The falls are not really tall but they’re beautiful and a great outing for one day!!

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Dismal Falls view from the top of the path leading from the road.

Dismal Falls view from the top of the path leading from the road.

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After the visit to the falls we went up the forestry road and found a cool rest stop to have lunch of grilled chicken, cheese & crackers, and fresh fruit.  From there we took off through another road of Giles County called Sugar Run which ran through some awesome forest land and we found this fine creature crossing the road but don’t seem to be able to find out what type of moth he will turn into.  I’ve inserted a close up of him and one of him beside my husbands size 10 boot to give you an idea of how big it was.

It has two sets of red antennae.

It has two sets of red antennae.

It's about 1/2 " - 3/4" around.

It’s about 1/2 ” – 3/4″ around.

I've seen them, I think, about half this big but never really took a close look at them.

I’ve seen them, I think, about half this big but never really took a close look at them.

We also saw these structures as we were about to leave Sugar Run.

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Several deer, squirrels, a few turkeys and wild birds were seen but I got of picture of this one grazing along the road.

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And we passed an exotic farm and saw these along the road.

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It was such a fun and peaceful day spent together and not working until we were bone tired.  This is why we decided to take an adventure at least once a month.  I can’t wait to see what we do in September!!

 

Yoohoo, spring, where are you?

Our little neck of the woods has been filled with major low temps for the last six weeks with minor warm ups and like everyone else I am SOOOOOOO ready for spring.  Yes, this is another post about the weather and knowing we can’t do anything about but gripe I think we are all doing that quite well!!

We were just hit with our first major snowfall which started around 2:30 on Wednesday evening causing me to leave work early so I wouldn’t be stuck out on the roads with my family worried to death.  NO I’m not stupid enough to wait for the roads to get treacherous before heading home.  I have a wonderful job and supervisors that allow me to head out early since I live about 25 minutes from home which is very much in the country.  We had plenty of warning about the incoming storm and prepared well in advance.  By the time I pulled into our driveway the roads were getting white and the mountain in front of our house and the one behind our house could not be seen.

Just got home!

Just got home!

This is what it looked like about 20 minutes after I arrived home.

This is what it looked like about an hour after I arrived home.

Hubby had worked most of the day before feeding the animals heavy and cutting some extra firewood for the main stove and the one in the kitchen.  It’s a good thing he covered it as soon as he unloaded it.  We had prepared for the electricity to go out as well and had five gallon buckets full of water for the bathroom, pitchers full for drinking and cooking and gallon jugs full for the animals and washing dishes.  Thankfully the power only went out twice and it was during the night and only long enough to have to reset the clocks.  Here’s a pictorial of how the storm grew as the night went on:

Almost a white-out!

Almost a white-out!

Bird and squirrel feeders are full.

Bird and squirrel feeders are full.

Birds are feeding heavily.  They know it's going to get bad.Birds are feeding heavily. They know it’s going to get bad.

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Ground covered good with about 2 inches.

Ground covered good with about 2 inches.

Snow accumulation just after dark.

Snow accumulation just after dark.

Still piling up and it's pouring huge dry flakes.

Still piling up and it’s pouring huge dry flakes.

Hubby cleared a path so Sassy could get out to relieve herself and it's filling in.

Hubby cleared a path so Sassy could get out to relieve herself and it’s filling in.

Here’s what we woke up to yesterday morning:

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My car disappeared during the night.

My car disappeared during the night.

Hope the roof can bear the weight and there's another roof above it just as full.  When it slides off we'll know the sturdiness of our addition.

Hope the roof can bear the weight and there’s another roof above it just as full. When it slides off we’ll know the sturdiness of our addition.

21* and holding.  Wind is starting to get up.

21* and holding. Wind is starting to get up.

We’ve muddled through with no major crisis and hubby has to start over this morning cleaning out the drifts to all the animals to feed.  I’m keeping the fires going and cooking.  Today is a good day for a pot of homemade venison/vegetable soup!!

More trees

We’ve been so busy the last few weeks and it seems like months since I last blogged and I’m trying to make up for lost time tonight.  Bear with me and I promise you’ll understand before this weekend is over.

We have three apple orchards on our farm and all used to be full of old timey apples.  Time, neglect and the weather have really been hard on the trees.  Each fall we try to have a Sunday Cider Fest and decided if we didn’t do something about replenishing the trees that have died or been uprooted by the wind that we would have to start buying apples to continue the tradition.

We’ve replaced about 10 trees in the last two years and I’ve been trying my hand at grafting with not much success.  I think the problem was trying to graft to trees that were not in the ground and established.  Two years ago I started taking classes offered by the county extension office to learn how to graft.  At each class I’ve obtained 10-15 apple root stocks for semi-dwarf trees.

DSCN0655Since I haven’t had much luck with the grafting, Hubby and I decided I need to make sure the root stock was going to live.  When I got the root stock it was bare root and it was too much stress on the grafts competing with the trees trying to get established.  We put all of the stock in large pots with fertilized soil and made sure they got plenty of water throughout the summer.  We did this for two summers and during the winter took the trees (30 trees) into the mansion basement to keep the winter wind from beating them out of the pots.

Potted apple root stock in the sun but the board fence protected them from the summer winds.

Potted apple root stock in the sun but the board fence protected them from the summer winds.

Last month we started bringing them out for some daily sun and acclimating them to the cooler weather.  Last weekend we planted the first 15 in the orchard at the west barn.

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Hubby used the post hole digger on the tractor to drill the holes and then we had some heavy rains which was great for getting the water to settle the holes and get the water down where the roots would need them.

We set out thirteen more yesterday afternoon and now we wait.  Our biggest challenge will be the deer!!  The trees that we set out last weekend have already felt the damage of  deer.  Each one of the trees lower limbs had been eaten off.  To keep them from completing the damage we will have to make woven wire cages to go about two feet around and out from each tree.  We tried the plastic pipe around them last year and the mice did the damage then.  Apparently they thought the pipe was a good place to set up housekeeping and chewed the bark off at the base of the tree and killed them.    So MICE and DEER are on my hit list at the moment!!

 

The year is almost three quarters gone and what did I do?

                                                                                                                                                                    January -Ice and snow

February-Making maple syrup

January-February – grafting fruit trees

February – March – Seedlings started

March – Baby calves arrive

March-April – Spring turkey hunting for two of my favorite people.

April – fire wood for winter 2012

April – New equipment for working the cattle

April – More new fencing

May – Gardening begins

May – Honeybees cleaning house and we prepare for fresh honey

May – Bee swarming begins

May – Fruit trees bloom and we worry about late frosts.

June 2012 – 1st ever “duratio” in our neck of the woods. Lots of cleanup and keeping hubby busy!

June – Duratio takes down lots of our fruit and nut crop and wreaks havoc on our fencing.

June – Hay time

June – Hay lot is full!

July – Spring cleaning almost done!

July – Harvesting & canning for winter in full swing!

July – A little crafting along the way makes life fun!

July – First barn quilt in Craig County on the barn!! More fun!

August-September – Mammoth pumpkin from the garden. He almost didn’t fit the wheel barrow!

July – August – Fresh vegies from the garden.

September – Potatoes harvested and in the cellar.

September – Plowing to sow the winter crops (turnips & parsnips).

September – Spaghetti sauce and barbecue sauce from the last of the tomatoes.

And, here it is the end of September.  Deer season and turkey season is soon to be here.  Baby calves are coming and yearlings are headed to the market.  Two nights of cold temps and frost in the mornings means firing up the wood stoves.  The cycle starts again.

Spring on the Farm

March and April is always a wonderful time to live on a farm.  This year has been very special on ours.  Last week our baby calves started arriving.  Of course, I’m always as anxious as those expectant mothers but this year we’ve had some trials and tribulations.  We started out with one cow aborting two MONTHS early and then a first time mother having a stillborn.  I was devastated but know it’s part of living on a farm and Mother Nature having her reasons.  Then we have two little bulls born and they’re perfect in every way and very, very active.  We go for about four days with nothing happening and then a mother for the fourth or fifth time delivers twin girls and both are dead.  My husband believes the first one was in trouble and the time lapse of her being born delays and causes the death of the other twin.  Mom wasn’t doing well the first two days but now seems to be eating and may be okay.  On the same day another set of twins is born!!  This is not a normal thing for our cattle.  We’ve only had about five sets of twins in the forty years we’ve been farming.  These two are alive and well for a time and Mom is letting both nurse.  She cleans them up and won’t let my hubby get near them but that’s okay because we know she’ll be a good mom.  Later that evening “after dark”  she leads the little girl to the lower fields with the rest of the herd and returns to bring the baby brother to the fold of the herd.  By the time she gets back to their birthing place in the woods, he’s GONE!   The next morning when hubby finds her distressed with only one babe he begins a desperate search that turns up fruitless.  We believe that a coyote or bear got while she was gone.  Lots of farmers in our area have had this problem with coyotes for the past few years but this was only our second time that we know of.  It’s very disheartening as farmers because that cash down the tubes.  For me personally, I’m just sick about it and want to bring them all to the front yard to live until they’re five days old and can run like the wind!!  The mother is terribly protective of her one little girl and she’s become very brazen and curious running off to meet other babes her size and of course mom is run to death trying to keep up with her special little girl.  I find this so true of human parents.  We want to keep our youngsters from all harms way that may come in any shape or form.  One big difference is that we get to keep ours around a lot longer and don’t consider them “cash crop”.  We’ve have nine in all as of last night and they are all well.  Watching them run and play is better than a peanut butter and jelly sandwich!!

Until next time, have a very blessed day!  Visit a farm!  It’s good for your soul!