Tuesday, September 1, 2020

fall is in the air

I've been trying to upload this post for a few days now ... what's up with Blogger ??
The days are getting shorter, the sun is sitting lower, the nights are cool and the sun not as hot anymore. Fall is in the air. I love fall, I love it's colors, it's smell, it's celebrations and the cooler temperatures it brings. Ths only thing I don't like about fall is that it will be followed by winter ... a long, cold and dark winter. 

I've been working in the garden the last two weeks...or what is suppose to become my garden. This big plot of land is free to be designed by me :) 
In the left hand upper corner u see a little plum tree...just below the maple. That is the start of a future row of fruit trees . I would like a couple apples and maybe a cherry next year .

I started a little Hügelkultur bed ... which I want to have done by the end of october and plant with garlic for the winter. This is an experiment. We will see ... I build it with old logs, lots of brush, leaves, other cuttings from the garden and kitchen compost. I will cover it all with soil once I start taking down my garden beds from this year...

I alsonstarted transplanting som
e of my berry bushes. This is a red current. 

And here a row of gooseberries.
Along the back of the garden I will plant a row of rasberry bushes. The holes are dug , I am planning on planting tomorrow.

We took in another three oldies last week. 
Comanche and Scout 

And Sierra. All three were given to us due to hay shortage in the area. All three are broke to ride, Sierra and Comanche both beginner safe with lots of experience. 

My tomatoes are riping so nicely this year. I don't often get to pick ripe tomatoes in this area. Growing season is just to short. Often tomatoes finish ripening in the house or I make green tomatoe pickles. I am happy to have lots of ripe tomatoes this year for salads and sauces. Tomatoes are my happy go to veggie in the garden.

The carrotts also finally start growing. They are still little but a couple of weeks ago I didnt think we would even make it to this size ever :)

Our pond is so low this year. We need water so badly. It is still enough for Daisy to cool off and that 's all that counts for her ;)

Lily took her goats for a last stroll. Two days ago the babies and one of the big giats went to a new home in Thunder bay ...

I've never seen Lil this sad. It broke my heart and whatever I didn I just couldnt cheer her up. The lady who bought them send me pictures on Facebook which made both of us feel a little better. Seeing them with new friends at a beautiful new place healed our pain a bit. We are slowely getting used to not having all those cuties around.

I did a thing. I ordered two gooselings. Sebastopol geese like the ones in the picture. I love them and can't wait to get the babies here next spring . Aren't they beautiful ??

We had an accident at the farm tonight. One of the turkeys fell into a waterhole and drowned. 
I hope everyones day ended on a happier note than ours.

Til next time, take it easy !!!

Tuesday, August 18, 2020

a little vacation time

Hello friends :) summer is slowely coming to an end. The first leaves are starting to turn yellow. Summer always goes by too fast but like every year I am looking forward to my favourite season, Fall 🍁
No bugs, cool air, cool nights, the first frosty mornings, wrapping up in a warm blanket while enjoying the last nice evenings outside. Fall could last forever in my opinion ;)
We decided to go away for a few daya of camping. Like every summer, we spend a few days at my sister in law's cabin. It is always big fun for the kids and a few days of just putting my feet up for me :)
We headed east and our first stop was Raleigh falls ... we love to visit the falls every time we go out that way .

After a short visit with Gramma we headed out to camp. The first day was super windy. Skyler usually spends his days in a little red paddle boat with his fishing road but that day he didn't even make it away from the shore. 

We had beaautiful weather the while time we were there. The days were sunny but not too hot and at night we had some showers and it cooled off nicely.

Evenings at camp are always filled with the song of loons and beautiful skies. The days are very relaxed ... the kids play in the water all day. I went swimming, relaxed in the sun with a glass of vino and just enjoyed that I had nothing else to do.
After five days tho we all were a little homesick and ready to go home.

Our little red chicken coop was empty when we got home. Our meat chickens had gone to the butcher while we were gone. We have 10 beautiful big chickens in the freezer.  The biggest one weighed in at 4.9 kg. 
So it was chicken coop cleaning day .... inside and out ... everything nice for a little batch of layers that moved in now.

Tonight we cooked our first hone raised chicken ... 

A meal home grown on the farm. Chicken, beets and beans. The potatoes came from the neighbours farm. So good !!! I can't believe what a difference in taste ... I am officially announcing, the raising of meat chickens was a success. We will do it again next year. I want to make some changes tho. I would like to raise them on grass, so I will build a couple chicken tractors that I can move around on the property and only supplement with grower food. 

The turkeys are growing into beautiful birds. Our Tom is so big ... thinking practically here for a moment ... I dont have a roaster that big ... hahah.
The vet was out today to check on Lunas leg. Unfortunately the tendon snapped again. However he says she is doing really good. Its healing very well, she walks good on her foot. He says she will learn to walk without the tendon, she will be ridable ... as well as she dies already, it will only improve from here. She will get another round of antibiotics to avoid infection. 
With time she will learn to walk properly without the tendon, however will probably in the beginning stumble more than usual. So LOTS and LOTS of ground work.  But for now ... no work at all ... continue on with lots of TLC 

Our temperatures are climbing into the 30th again in the next few days ... I think this will be the last heat wave.

U all stay cool and take it easy 🏖

Monday, August 10, 2020

A big scare and a weekend full of hard work

Our week started with a big scare in the pasture. I went for a walk with the kids when I saw that this big girl had crossed the creek and was standing on the " wrong " side of the creek by the fence. We went down to see her ans she visited with us. When she decided to cross the water again she got stuck on something. She had found a very old, overgrown fence wire.
Right away she panicked and started pulling on the wire. I called G. to come with the wire cutter and he hurried to come and help her. When she saw him and the big clipper she panicked even more and ran across the creek , pulling on the wire, which was cutting into her leg, until it finally snapped. 
We brought her into the barn, she was bleeding and we knew right away it wasn't good. It was actually worse ... 
The vet came out right away and what we had feared became reality. 
Luna had cut through a tendon on her right hind leg. Tendon injuries have usually a recovery time of over a year. If they recover. 
The vet stitched her up. She is on stall rest for 2 months. She can walk as little as possible, bandages have to be changed every three days. 
It was a shock ... but after some time I was just glad that she was ok, all taken care of and everything else will be figured out along the way. 
She is doing very well so far. Her swelling is gone down a lot. Tonight is her first bandage change. 
Luna hates her legs touched. She just came to us in June after she had been in someones pasture, unhandled for many years ... she is learning to trust but this is a challenge for her ... and us.

This little guy is Mr Jake. 
Mr Jake came to us Friday morning. I went out to feed the chickens and kept hearing a little crow coming from the bushes. There he was...Mr Jake. 
We have no idea where he came from. We checked with the neighbours but noone was missing a little rooster. 
We are assuming that someone hust dropped him off at the end of our driveway ... 
We cought him and put him in a coop with some ladies but he kept escaping. So now he just wanders the property ... shy but always close to the other chickens and food. 

I am falling in lobe with those geese !!! I want more !!! 

Em is turning into a great bird lover as well. She loves her chickens and is always the first one in the coop to check for eggs. 

This weekend was busy. We had a friend out with some heavy equipmemt ... there were so many projects that needed to be done ...
The first one was this old shed that was falling down and a threat to anything that got too close to it ...

Aaaand GONE !!! 

The second, even bigger project was the old manure pit. An old concrete pit that used to be used for cow manure.
We tried to fill it up with jung that we dug up around the property. We never made a dent ...
This weekend it was plowed under and was gone and forgotten by the end of the day 

We gained so much property ... everything looks so big and roomy.

The third project was our outdoor riding arena. A dream of mine ... 
So this overgrown patch of gravel ...

Turned into this beautiful sand arena. We still have to put up the fences around it but it is already beautiful !!! A dream come true !!!

It's been hot still the last week. The nights are getting cooler and once in a while u think u can smell fall in the air ... I love it ... now begins my favourite time of the year 🧡

Monday, August 3, 2020

Camp out and other updates

Hello all :) we are finally done with the numbing heat. All week we had beautiful temperatures in the mid 20th. We even got some rain and nature just seems to take a deep breath. 
The kids and I started our week with a fun camping night in the backyard. We are in a fire ban right now so it wasn't quite perfect since we couldn't have a bon fire but we had fun anyway, with a movie and popcorn. I just recently bought a 6 person tent at a flea market and the kids have been wanting to camp out since we got it, of course. We all snuggled up and slept peacefully through the night. I love sleeping outside. I love the fresh air, all the noises u can hear at night..especially living on a farm where everything comes back to life after a hot day ... we heard horses munshing, cows moooing, donkey braying ... the roosters started to crow at 5am ... but being farm kids, everyone slept through all the noise until 8am. It was a real fun night. 

The next day we went blueberry picking. We've been enjoying blueberry pancakes for breakfast for a while now. I am not one to pick and freeze. We pick and eat whatever we want to eat and when we have enough we stop picking. Sharing with others and especially the bears that are waiting, just like us, all year for this yummy treat. 

The garden. Well, it is growing but not really. It is such a weird year. The spring was so cold and then it got soooo hot all of a sudden. Everything is dried out and for whatever reason nothing is growing as it should be. This was my lunch from the garden the other day. The cucumbers are still very small and I just picked this one because I was craving it and didn't want to wait any longer. The Kohlrabi was delicious. I only picked one so far. Do you like them ? I love them, raw or cooked, just yummy. 

My first zuccini. There are a whole bunch still growing and I only picked this one because the skinny top was starting to get squishy. I was hoping for some ripe tomatoes to eat with the zuccini but they are far from turning red. I have lots tho. 

The beans are growing but there is just not as many as there usually is. It was the first time that I planted beans and peas in buckets and maybe it has something to do with that, I don't know. 
My kale is growing fine and so is the lettuce. The beets are getting bigger but the carrots are tiny still. 
oh well, every garden brings something new to learn and experience. 
This year I am just grateful for the farmers market. 

Sky took on a big project the other day. Him and his hand saw. I wanted to prune this maple tree and he said he would do it for me ... this little person with his little saw. And look what he did in a couple of hours ....

ta daaaa ... he was so proud and I was so please with the result :)

Baby goats are growing like weeds. Exploring the barnyard with their mommas. 
I have all the babies sold . I am glad they will be going all together to a lady in Thunder Bay who has a wonderful place for them and more goat friends to play with. I am really really sad to see them go at the end of August but happy this worked out like this. 
I have a little buck lined up to rebred the ladies in the fall. He is a tiny little guy and I am not sure if this will work out but if it does the babies will be a whole lot smaller which I wouldn't mind at all. I would like to breed the size down a bit and maybe keep a couple girls of the next batch ... if there is any ... hopefully ;)

pretty girls are getting so big

Our two lady cows seem to have been successful with dating the neighbours bull. Neither one of the two has come into heat which is a good sign that they are both pregnant. 
Our little Calf Belle is not so little anymore. Her, her momma and her auntie Clarabelle love to hang out in the indoor riding arena during the day, laying in the hay, away from the bugs and out of the sun. 

Horses and burrs, will be my fight for the rest of my life it seems. This time it is the minis who all kinda look like Milly here in the picture. This will take lots and lots of baby oil, patience, itchy fingers and lots of treats to get all this nasty prickly burrs out of their hair ... grrrrr

The turkeys are awesome. They are so easy and smart. They know their daily routine so well and never give us any trouble. So ... I just found out when I made an appointment at the butcher for the meat chickens that they don't process turkeys or geese ... actually noone here processes Turkeys or Geese ...
Can anyone guess what that means ??? This will either be our first time butchering ourselves or the Turkeys and Geese will live a long happy life with us, which was not the plan. 
So far we are determent to do it ourselves. We will see whats gonna happen when the time comes ;)

Having a breakfast snack before going to to graze all day 

The geese go out again as well and have not ended up in the manure puddle again. However it is a little hard to leave them in the barn yard . They follow all of us around like puppies ....

Just this morning I found them right outside the door. They went under the gate and came down the driveway ... lol I thought it was funny finding them all sitting on our deck ...

Good thing is they also follow us back to the barn. I guess in a few days they will also know their routine and hopefully stay where they are suppose to be. I think they are just the cutest. 

We have big plans for the rest of the week. Friday our foster son will be moving out. Of course that needs some organisation and celebration. Shopping day on Wednesday, my least favourite day. 
One day of this week we have to make a little road trip , couple hours north from us. I bought a used kitchen buffet that I want to restore and finish for our dining room. I am very excited about the find ... I've been looking for a long time for just the right one. 
On the weekend we will have a friend here with an excavator. There is so many little projects that require professional muscle power .... things need to be torn down , levelled out, cleared out, fence posts need to be set, sand for the riding arena needs to be dug up etc etc ... I am very excited for this and I am sure I will have some pictures by next week !!!
until then, take it easy !!!

Sunday, July 26, 2020

when your cow gets stuck in the Turkey coop

Our week started with a new adventure. Not completely new but new to this batch of babies and mommas. Milking. Sunday night I went into the barn to separate the does from t he babies. I put all the little guys into one pen and all the does stayed in their stalls. They were separated for the first time. Everyone did really well. 12 hours later, Monday morning, we went to the barn with out milk bucket. We let the babies out of their pen, to eat some hay. then one doe after the next jumped onto the milk stand and was milked. Three of the four were never milked before and all three of them stood very nicely and it was easy to get done. We got  a little over three litres every morning of the week. Then I found some lice on the little guys and we had to do something about that first before we could continue milking. Everyone got a needle today with Ivomectin, which I will have to repeat in 14 days. After the treatment we can not drink the milk for 14 days. So unfortunately there will be no milking for the next 4 weeks :( I was just getting used to my beloved goat cheese again ...
Pne thing I will look into during the next 4 weeks is a milk machine. My hands do not like the milking, they get really sore and tingle all day. I do not think that this is going to get better at some point. I will look for something that I can use on the goats as well as on the cow next year...

I love this time of the year when u can just go into the field behind the house and come home with the most beautiful wild flower bouquet. Aren't those pretty ??

We picked the first currents from the berry patch. It was not it wasn't much, just enough for a nice breakfast. Berries with jogurt and some oats. I love currents. the kids don't really care for them, I think they are a little too sour for them. SOOO I got them all :)

We build a new fence across the driveway so we can let some horeses, the cows and goats graze around the building in the farmyard without having them coming down the driveway and onto the road. The red shed is ... or used to be the Turkey house. The right side of it still has the geese in it. As u can see in the picture, when u look closely...CowCow decided to check out where the Turkeys live. The floor in the shed is very rotten and the cow went through the floor wherever she placed her foot.  And she froze...we tried everything, oats, treats, the calf that was calling her on the outside...nothing would move her. G. had to get the chainsaw and cut half the wall out of the shed. 

It was kinda funny to watch. All the horses and chickens and turkeys came to watch what was happening. Finally after a long long time of trying the boys finally got her out. 

Cowcow was happy to be out of the trap and wandered off to new adventures. We moved the Turkeys into a new barn. They were a little upset at first but after a few nights now they seem to like their new stall. They are free ranging around the farm all day and come running at night when I come with the food bucket. I really have to say that they impress me every day. They are so smart and curious ... such a fun bird. I will have to take some pictures of them and post them 

Daisy slowely but surely turns into a real farm dog. unfortunately includes that a daily bath in the cow poop puddle. She knows that she has to have a bath with the waterhose before she comes into the house at night ... and she is kinda looking forward to it in this heat. She loves all the animals, never bothers with the chickens or anything else that she could chase. She loves her ponies. She has been playing with thise guys since she was a puppy. It is very sweet to watch.

The heat continues and we take every minute that we can spare and spend it in the water. 
Yesterday I too the kids to the lake that is just across the highway from us. Eagle lake . I love it there and I always think we don't spent enough time in on and around the water. I think I see a little boat somewhere in our future. Waleye for supper is always a treat !!!

I can not believe the summer we are having. I can't remember a summer that has been so hot and constantly sunny for such a long stretch ... we desperately need rain. We get the odd shower and Thunderstorm but not enough. The grass is not growing, the hay harvest is very skim. 
I wonder what August will bring. The next two weeks don't look like anything major will change.

We finished our Sunday with a goose rescue. The geese had their first day outside today. It took them a long time to be brave enough to come out of their coop. We left them out of sight for a while and came back later to check on them. Of course they had found the first water hole that came across them. OUR MANURE PIT !!! Well they were happy and we have birds in there all the time, ducks and canada geese...so I guess it is a natural for them. At night thpo, when they wanted to come back into the coop, they couldn't find their way out of the pit. One was tangled up in the weeds and the other three couldn't get up the steep hill. So ... carefully Skyler climbed down , G holding on to him so he wouldn't sink into the manure...ewwww...
WE had to catch one by one and bring them back into their coop. 
I wonder if they will be smarter tomorrow. I will try to walk them down to our actual pond. And will let u know if I was successful ...

until then, take it easy and stay cool !!!