Tuesday, May 29, 2007

I Am Still Alive!!

We had a very busy weekend. Michael took Friday off and we planned on getting lots done. When he is home, I do not get on here too much, so that is why I have not posted this weekend. On Thursday morning, I got a call from the post office bright and early. We had more chicks arrive. It was supposed to be a just a small batch of 35, but it ended up being even smaller... only 25. I thought you would like to see how they come. This first picture is the brooder all cleaned out from the last bunch and set up for the new bunch.

This is how the carton comes. If you click on it to make it bigger, you can see the chicks through the holes in the box. They make a great big noise for such little things.

Here is the box with the lid off. Aren't they cute? These are all meat birds, and this is the only point that they are cute. =)

We did all of our errands on Friday. We had quite a few to take care of. We went to the greenhouse, the bulk food store, the bank, Verizon, TSC, Kroger and probably some other places I forgot. Saturday, Joshua wanted to go garage saling in a nearby community. Every year on this weekend, they have tons of garage sales in this area. We got some good deals, but really did not buy very much. Joshua got an oar and an anchor for his boat. He got a really old RISK game that was in pristine condition. He paid 50 cents for it. I got 8 blue gingham cloth napkins, something for Michael's Dad, some shirts for Michaels and some small towels to use with the animals. It was fun being together. Then Sunday, we had our fellowship next door. We always eat a meal together and we all hung out together. On Monday, we got up and started getting things done around here and then went to some friends in the afternoon. We cooked out and then sat and talked for a short while. We then went and played miniature golf. Today, I have been trying to catch up. My phone and DSL were out most of the morning and part of the afternoon. I walked next door and we used her cell phone (her phone was out too) to call and report it.

I hope to be back on here more regular now. Hope you all had a great weekend as well.

Thursday, May 24, 2007

We Are So Blessed...

Yesterday I told you about Molasses and Patty getting out. I kept looking out to make sure that the calf was still out there. One time I looked out and he was not in sight. So, out the door I went. I looked over in the shed barn by the house to see if he was visiting his other calf friends. Then I went out to see if he was in the drive through of the big barn and I just couldn't see him. No, he wasn't in there. I did see someone or one of the cows had opened a sliding door into the barn from the drive through. It was enough open that a cow could escape. As I got closer to the barn to close that door, I heard commotion in the milk parlor area. Our big barn (the one on my profile picture) used to house a dairy goat milking operation. The people who rented the farm for the year before we moved in, trashed it when they moved. We are wanting to get out there, clean it up and put the walls back up that they tore down. It is not used right now, but cows shouldn't be able to get into it. As I came around to go into the door to the milk parlor, I saw that it was open a bit. I KNEW that the calf was in there. I opened the door and went in and what did my wondering eyes see???? Bullseye and Sir Loin of Beef, the yearling steers in there investigating. God is good, because they could have gotten out through the door. They saw me and high tailed it through a sliding door that the goats used to use. I closed it, although the lock was busted and made sure the outside door was closed too. While in there, I did scan the bottom part of the barn and there was no wee brown calf. As I came out of there, one of my WONDERFUL neighbors was in the yard. I hollered and asked if they had seen the calf. They had not, but came to assist in the search. I went up into the top part of the barn where we keep hay. No calf. We decided that he must be laying down in the tall grass somewhere. So, we started looking. Her brother joined us and as he walked over he startled the calf in the grass and I am not sure who was more surprised... the calf or him!! The calf ran back over by his mom, so I went back inside. When my dear, sweet, wonderful man got home we went out to get Molasses back into her pasture. We figured the calf would follow. We couldn't find him again. This time I had thought to bring my camera. I told Michael where he had been laying and we went and looked and sure enough this is what we saw...

From a distance, the grass was tall enough, he was invisible. =) We went to the other pasture to get the cow. We were well armed with peanuts!! Since we are "known" to carry peanuts we usually get a good reception. Here are the 3 yearling steers coming to greet me because they are so glad to see me (I know it is the peanuts - just humor me).

Now the 2 mama cows will come close for peanuts, but they know that often we grab their halter if we get close. Buttercup is much better about this than Molasses. In the next picture they are standing right in front of Michael who is trying to get Molasses to take a peanut so he can grab her. He has to go through a little game with her, but he always wins.

He got a hold of her and started walking her toward the fence. I lifted the fence (we keep the bigger cows in with one electric wire and by the way, the fence was turned off) and he started to pull her under it. She decided that she did not want to go there. He pulled the chain on her control halter and tugged on the side of it. She DID NOT want to go. So, I moved behind her holding the fence up over her and was getting ready to swat her and she finally moved. He led her to the other pasture and the WONDERFUL neighbors came out to help him. We walked her by her baby so that he would get up and follow. They held the fence up for Michael and Molasses, but the calf did not want to go through. It made me think of the song... London Bridge is Falling Down. =) The calf finally got shooed in as well.

Here is a picture of Patty back safe in his pasture. The next picture is the 4 little calves. Our 3 are Patty, Stu and Phil and the WONDERFUL neighbor's is TJ. I am not sure what that stands for.

Being the WONDERFUL neighbors that they are (I can hear Mrs. Neighbor sighing and rolling her eyes at me right now!) they asked what was on the chore menu for the night. We had to put chicks out in the field because new chicks were coming this morning. They volunteered to help. The chicks got put in our chicken cages and then were loaded on top of our wagon. The one back wheel on this wagon is broken and it just falls off. We need to get it fixed. However, they decided to use it anyway. Here is a picture of our Farm Hands!!!! Aren't they cute??? =)

Then the parade began. The men walked with them to keep the pens on the wagon and watch the wheel. It did fall off on the way out. =)

Mrs. Neighbor and I were sitting out at the picnic table talking while they were working. Hmmm... that doesn't sound too good. We do not sit around and talk whenever they are working!!! =) Anyway, here is what the sky looked like. It was beautiful. Whenever I see a view like this it makes me wonder if I am going to hear a trumpet and see the sky break open and the Lord returning!!!

Just one more thing on a quick note... When I fed the calves their bottle this morning, all 3 new calves came to get bottles. The neighbor's calf, TJ, was in the middle of our 2. I got the bottles in their mouths and TJ, who had already been fed, got so excited that he started sucking on Stu's ear and had his whole ear in his mouth the entire time they were guzzling their bottles. Calves are so funny.

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Why You Don't Want To Be My Neighbor...

Aren't these little guys cute? I just love baby jersey calves. They are precious. If you have ever fed baby calves bottles, you will understand the two terms of slobbering (sliming) and butting. These cute, little, sweet fellows guzzle their bottles with incredible speed. This then puts them into a feeding frenzy, except the bottle is empty. So, they will try to nurse anything and everything that is near by. If it is your shirt or your arm, or as one time happened to me... the side of your face is what is close, you get slimed. They are very slobbery after having their bottles. The butting comes from them thinking you are their mom. You provide the milk, so therefore you are mom. If you go into the pasture, they will come running to you. However, once they get there, they are looking for a nipple. As they nurse their moms, you will see them butt or bump up really hard on their mom's udder. Well, they do that while looking for one as well. They will come up behind you and start butting your rear end. If you are a guy then don't face them without being truly ready. This morning I went out to feed the calves. The milk cow, her calf and 2 of the others were in the stall, but one of ours was missing. I called to see if he would come running, but that did not happen. So, I went into the pen (leaving the bottles sitting on the outside) and started looking. He was no where to be seen. The grass is pretty high, so I started calling and looking. Thankfully the other 2 stayed inside the barn. When I got the far side of the pasture, there he was laying in the tall grass like a little fawn. He saw me (I swear he smiled at me) and just stayed laying down. I went over to pet him to see if he was OK. He got up and I knew he would follow me. In the meantime the milk cow had followed me mooing for a peanut, which I did not have on me. So, we are now in a parade back to the barn. Me out front, a little calf following and a big milk cow following him. Well, we did not get far until Phil A. Mignon (he is small, but will be tasty) realized it was time for breakfast and I was Mom. So, he started butting me in the back side. I would put my hand up to try and keep him from doing it. He would just go to the other side. All the way into the barn, I got butted. I was so hoping the neighbors were not watching. =)

I told my neighbor that I was going to put a post on my blog titled.... "Why you would not want to be my neighbor" Then I said she could fill up the comment box. Today was a phone day. I made and received several calls. I was on the phone and I heard a little voice at my front door. It was the little guy from next door telling me the milk cow and her calf were out. So, the neighbor and 2 of her children and I went to try and get her. I took peanuts with me to entice her. She would come up and eat the peanuts, but if I had my other hand near or moved it, she ran off. We (read the agile children here) finally herded her in with the other cows. Her calf went in with her. I told them to just leave her in there until Michael got home. Two of the steers started chasing the calf and so he ran out of the pasture under the wire. He was hanging close to her and ran off if we tried to get near him, so I said to let him be. Well, I got another phone call when I went in. As I was talking with her, I heard Molasses bellowing, and I went to investigate. Her calf was out in the driveway close to the pasture it was supposed to be in. So, I headed out and turned off the fence. The others from next door had seen her too and were already out there trying to herd her. So, I picked up the fence, but he would not go under it. Then my dog (WHO DOES NOT OBEY WELL!!!... sense some frustration there?) took off after the calf, which made the mother go nuts and the baby ran back over by that pasture. So, he is still out of his pen. I don't know what I would do with out my WONDERFUL neighbors. They help me a lot. Thanks Neighbors!!!!!

Here is my bleeding heart. You can see the blooms in several stages. God is so amazing. He gave us such a variety in colors, shapes, textures. Thank you LORD!!!

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Just Another Day...

We worked in the garden last night. We planted one row of lettuce that someone (Dear Mrs. M) had given to us. I want to plant lettuce seeds in another row as well. We also got some beet seeds planted. Now, I have to be watching those chickens to make sure they are not digging up my seeds. We also planted a few marigolds and put up some of our tepees. My adirondack chair is out by the garden. My back has been giving me a bit of a problem, so I would do a little and then sit for a few minutes. While I was sitting this robin came to look for worms in the garden.

I just love how the tepees look in a garden. Ginny (once Mrs. M) did that in her garden one year and I loved it. So, this will be my second year for tepees. Last year I grew birdhouse gourds and beans on them. This year, I will do the beans and all my cucumbers are going on tepees. I saved my sunflower stalks from last year to make this years tepees. The ones you see in the picture below are for the cucumbers. I have not put up the ones for the beans yet.

The tomatoes are small but pretty healthy looking. The peppers are doing really well so far. Last year my peppers did NOTHING!!! They were a waste of time and money. I planted one row of sweet onions and a row of red onions. The red onions are doing very well, but I am not even sure the sweet onions are going to make it. =( I may have to go and get some more. There really are plants in this picture. They are just very hard to see.

This comfrey plant grows beside my house. I dug it up and transplanted it somewhere else. It is doing well in the other spot too. This keeps coming up. I have dug it up at least 4 times to give to people and it keeps on coming back. =)

I love to see things hanging on a clothesline. I always think of my Mom when I hang up clothes. Hers were always perfect and in order. She would tell me the best way to hang things, so that they would dry either quicker or without leaving clothespin marks. Man, do I miss her. How can just seeing a clothes line bring on a tidal wave of grief. Sorry....

Monday, May 21, 2007

Busy, Busy Weekend

We had a lot going on this weekend. On Saturday, we went and picked up 4 jersey bull calves. They were all just a few days old. We delivered one to a friend's house and the other 3 came here. One of those 3 belong to our neighbor. They are so sweet looking. Each year, I am reminded again of just how small and precious they are. I went to get their picture this morning and this is what I found. That is Molasses in the kennel we have in the stall. How she got in there, I will never know. There is a bar that goes across the top of the gate. We use the kennel to keep the little ones in if we need to. Last night, when the neighbor's came over to give their calf a bottle, one of ours would not leave them alone. So, they put him in the kennel while they gave the bottle. It is really handy to have. The cows back is much taller than the bar, so it would have been fun to watch her get in there. We named our 2 new calves names off the list of ideas we got from ya'll on the first one. We now have Hamburger Patrick (the winner of the contest), Stu Beef and Phil A. Mignon or Patty, Stu and Phil for short. =)

These chicks will be going into the field tomorrow night or Wednesday night. These are broilers who will be 3 weeks this week and layers that will be 6 weeks. They get big quick.

My bleeding hearts are doing really well. Here are a couple of pictures of the blooms.

I had to go deliver a death message to the Amish this morning. When I was headed back to my car, this little guy/girl? came out to see me. Aaaawwwwww.... how cute!!!

Sunday we had church here. Then a bunch went to play softball on a local diamond. We watched the movie Peace Child. It is just a short over view of the book by the same title. It was good though.

Friday, May 18, 2007

Show And Tell Friday

Kelli hosts a show and tell Friday. Do you have a something special to share with us? It could be a trinket from grade school, a piece of jewelry, an antique find. Your show and tell can be old or new. Use your imagination and dig through those old boxes in your closet if you have to! Feel free to share pictures and if there's a story behind your special something, that's even better!

I posted the following picture on my website. There was an older woman on line who saw it. She emailed me and asked if I would allow her to paint a picture of it. I told her to feel free. She asked me to send her some more pictures of our barn. I sent her several.

She emailed me and said she had finished the picture and would I like it. I told her I would gladly buy it from her. She refused payment even for shipping. She had it framed and shipped it to me. Here is the painting she did. Thanks Irene!!!

Today is my dear sweet Michael's 50th birthday. I feel like we have grown up together. Here is a picture of us the Christmas we were engaged (1978). God has truly blessed me with a wonderful, sweet, gentle husband. He has been the biggest blessing in my life and I thank God for him. It is also my friend Rachel's 18th birthday. Happy birthday Rachel!!!!!

Also, it is my one year anniversary of blogging. I started last year on this day!!! Time sure does fly!!!

Thursday, May 17, 2007

Drum Roll Please........

Well we have a winner in the "Name The Calf Contest". I wrote down all the names including any cute comments you made about your choice. I left off the names of who submitted them. We had quite a list. My husband went through them and picked out his top 6 choices. Then I picked 3 of those and he picked the winner from them. The calf's name is Hamburger Patrick and he will be called Patty for short. Lisa in NM is the winner. If you will email me your address we will be sending you a copy of the movie Flywheel.

Thank you all for your choices. You were very creative and gave us ideas for future calves. In fact we are picking up two calves on Saturday.

Bluebird House

We will be picking the winner sometime today. Yesterday was full. I had my co-op truck come and then it had to be unloaded and sorted. My Dad and his friend came to our house for an afternoon visit and stayed for dinner. So, we have not had time to review the names yet.

I thought I would share a picture of the bluebird house my son made for me. The front swings down so you can clean it out. I am thrilled with my birdhouse!!!!! I will be back to write more later. I am still behind. =)

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Name The Calf Contest!!

This post will stay at the top until the end of the contest. Please scroll past it for newer posts.

If you have been reading my blog, then you know we just had a new calf born on Saturday. This calf is a bull calf, meaning he is a little boy. He is half jersey and half angus. He has a tiny white spot on his forehead and a larger white spot on one knee. He will become meat in our freezer in about 18 months. With all that in mind, I am looking for name suggestions for him. I am not sure what the prize will be yet, but I will let you know. The other calves on the farm right now are Texas T-Bone, Sir Loin of Beef and Bullseye. So, those names will not be allowed. Use your thinking caps and be creative. Just know that it is easier to eat T-Bone, then Little Buttercup. =) The final approval will come from my husband. Leave your suggestion in the comments section.

The Prize For the Contest

This is going to be the prize for the Name The Calf contest. It is the movie Flywheel. This is a new unopened DVD. A church decided to start making movies. This was their first one. The second one they made was Facing the Giants which I told about here. This is something that I believe every Christian needs to see. It will be a great addition to any family's film library. The contest ends at midnight on May the 15th.

Monday, May 14, 2007

Tomorrow is the Last Day!!

Tomorrow is the last day for the Name the Calf Contest. We will probably announce the winner on Thursday. So, check back then to see if you have won!!!

Sunday, May 13, 2007

Mother's Day

This is my second Mother's Day without my Mom. It is still hard, but not as hard as last year. I know that I will always miss her. When we lost her, we lost the main prayer warrior for our family. It has showed that those prayers are missing. The rest of us need to step up to the plate and pray like she did. She walked what she talked. I think of her up there with the Lord. I know she is so much happier. She has met the King of Kings!!!! I was listening to a song about going to heaven and the first thing they wanted to do, was to see Jesus. I could whole-heartedly sing along with that, but then I added my own line.... Then I want to see my Mom. =) This picture was taken in the spring of 1976. I was a senior in high school. I believe this was just after my Grandpa's funeral. My Grandma is in the front, then my Mom and then me.

I also celebrate on this day, that God blessed me with a son and let me be a mother. Here is a picture of my son, Joshua. =) He is going to love me for putting this picture up here. He is my gift from God. I wanted 12, but was only given one and so I got an extra special one.

He knows that I love loose change. I always use bills to buy things and keep the change. I save it up and have bought some really neat stuff with change. He had a half gallon jar almost full of change. He was messing with it last night. I thought he was counting it or rolling it. Here is what I saw when I came out of my room this morning. When he got up, he told me that his whole jar of change was mine for Mother's Day!!

Friday, May 11, 2007

Show And Tell Friday

Kelli hosts a Show and Tell Friday on her blog. If you would like to take part or just browse other people's show and tell, then head on over to her blog and check it out.

The Lord has blessed me with lots of friends 18 years old and younger. I love babies, children and young people. One of my friends, Anna knows that I love sunflowers and country type things. She found this picture and it reminded her of me. So, she put it in a frame and gave it to me as a gift. I always think of her when I look at it. It is in my office and I can see it when I sit here at the computer.

P.S. Check out the Name the Calf Contest on my blog. See links at right.

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Ready To Plant

Our last frost date for this area is May 15th. The last 2 years, we have had a frost after this date. I am hoping that is not the case for this year. The last few days including today have been in the 80's. The ground has dried out and it was time to till the garden. Michael likes to do the first big tilling of the year with a tiller that is pulled behind a tractor. We have 2 other families that go in on this with us. The one family picks the tiller up right before the rental place closes for the day. We are so blessed that they go and get the tiller, do the tilling and take it back the next morning. The tiller is on their tractor in the pictures above. One of their sons took our tractor and picked up their bush hog at their house and came back and bush hogged the garden area before they tilled it. I have most of my plants and seeds, now I need to decide what I will put in the ground before the frost date. =)

Tuesday, May 08, 2007


Here are the first batch of chicks at just a couple of days over 3 weeks old. These are all broilers and they are out on pasture in their moveable pen. These are the ugliest chickens, but oh, do they taste good.

Why is it.... This first picture is a bare place in the grass where I left weeds lay for too long. The grass died and still this year the spot is bare.

Now here, right beside it is my flower bed, that I put newspaper down and thick mulch over that. It looks like it needs to be mowed instead of weeded. Why couldn't this grass grow in the barespot? =)

I have the first two little blooms on my bleeding heart plant. I really want to move it out of this barrel, but I wonder if I will kill it in the process.

Here is an Iris that is blooming in front of the house. My iris's do not do too good. I get lots of the green shoots, but very few flowers.

Now, I don't want to encourage anyone to whine, but let me tell you what whining got me.... =) We have a young lady in our church who is a very good cook, but an even better baker. She has a big family and her older brother and her Dad give her lots of requests for desserts. She has even asked my son and my husband for their idea of what she should bring to church. I have been suggesting a cheesecake for quite a while now. She is really a sweet girl, but chooses not to hear me. =) There are a couple of meals that I make that she really likes. She mentioned that I could just bring those 2 every other Sunday and she would be happy. I reminded her in a sort of whiney way that I would like a cheesecake. They had car trouble on Sunday and had to go back home. I told her that I brought one of her favorites that day. I asked what she had made for dessert. It was NOT a cheesecake. So, I did a bit more whining. =) Well, today , she and 3 of her sisters walked to my house. Guess what they brought me? How did you guess???? Yup, a cheesecake. They also brought me wildflowers. I am wondering if I should tell my guys or just hide it in the back of the fridge!! =)

Saturday, May 05, 2007

Goodbyes and Hellos

Today my two goats went to their new home. We decided that it was the best thing for the farm. The feed costs have almost doubled in the last 5 years. Also, we really did not use the milk for anything but to feed other animals. I cried like a baby when they left and have had a couple of crying spells since then.

The goats were gone about 20 minutes and Michael went up to check up on Molasses. She was in labor and in about 30 mins. gave birth to a bull calf. I took pictures of the actual birth, but my camera is messing up and the first pictures I took are not downloading. =( Here is a picture of the calf's first attempt at standing up.

The 3 steer calves (2 are ours and one is the neighbor's) were hanging around close by. We had to push them away a couple of times. The one on the left is Texas T-Bone. The one in the middle is Sir Loin of Beef and the one on the right is the neighbor's. His name is Bullseye.

Molasses had quit cleaning him off and we wondered if it was because he had some manure on him. I did not have a towel out there, so I used a couple of handfuls of hay to wipe him down. That is why he is covered in hay.

He finally made it up on all 4 feet. I am always amazed at the perfection in God's creation. The Momma animals know just what to do. Then these brand new babies not even an hour old know where to start looking for a meal. How anyone can deny a Grand Creator is beyond me.

Texas T-Bone kept trying to get in close to check out the new guy in the pasture. He was very jumpy while doing it. The baby was very unsteady on his legs and would wobble. Everytime that he moved Tex would jump back out of the way.

I am going to be posting a contest to name the new baby. So be thinking of a good one. Remember, this guy will be hamburger in the fall of 2008. =)