Labour Day Weekend

How, oh how, can it be September already?
I feel like I’m going into Fall kicking and screaming.

“I don’t wanna get ready for winter….waaaahhhhhhh!!!!”

*sigh*

And yet, the signs are all there.
The cooler nights.
The geese are coming back.
Combines on the fields.
Horses are getting fuzzy… 😥

I’m not ready for fuzzy horses…last night at beet pulp time, Bella said she isn’t either.
Ah, but we have no choice. Time marches on, and away we go towards the coming winter.

This weekend has been a busy one.
Hubby worked Saturday, came home to take The Kid back to the city for back to school shopping.
Grade 11, this year.
Once more, where is time going?!?
How can I be okay with watching my baby girl handle a 1200lb animal, including jumping, and yet, be so on edge with her handling her Father’s truck??
It’s not that I doubt her skills.
She’s had a good teacher…
It’s the fact the she’s grown up enough to be legally allowed to take the truck out.

*sigh*
Damn that Father Time. 😉

Yesterday, Hubby worked on the winter duck house.
We cobbled together a quick shelter when we realized that putting them in the coop with the meat chickens wasn’t viable.
Now, we need to put together an insulated coop (with a heat lamp) for winter. Still don’t know genders, but that’s okay. In spring we’ll figure it out, and we’ll add whatever gender we need to get baby ducks.
Hubby is building a good-sized coop, because we’re all pretty darn enamored with ducks.
And we all like duck meat.

Ducks ❤

Seriously, how adorable are these 2?
Rain (front) always has an opinion…I have to admit, I love that.
I love an animal that you can have a conversation with, and I can totally do that with Rain.
Jazzy (back) is much quieter and a little more wary…s/he is warming up slowly, but is still uncertain of this crazy person who keeps trying to pet her/him. LOL!
Today, I had them both nibbling grain out of the feed scoop.

Speaking of feed scoops…

This one:

😉

Has learned how to lick the pig grain out of their feed scoop.
Now, nobody panic…the pigs eat a crushed wheat/barley mixture as their primary feed. Nothing that can harm a horse in any way.
In fact, Sable gets anywhere from 1/4-1 full cup of this grain mixture a day in her beet pulp.

Yesterday though, she had the pleasure of eating it from the scoop, once I was done feeding the piggies.
Just a few licks, as a treat. 🙂

“I like apples…”
~ Cookie

I’m so loving this taken-from-below set of images.
The Girls look so different from that angle, and it’s an absolutely fun set. I’ve got a few more I’ll share over the next few days…

With the forest fires, the high winds from the North, and our own smudges for bugs, we’ve had a few fairly smokey days…the haze on the image above is only 1/2 from the smudge fire.
It’s been hard on The Kid, and Cookie has been coughing a bit too.
😦

And then, there’s my MaxCat, who in one frame sums up my feelings for today…

“Really? You want me to what now??”
~ MaxCat

I’d love to crawl back into bed with a good book and a big bowl of bbq chips. Not to be though. As always, there’s work to do. And, I don’t have any chips.
We’ve actually managed to break the chip addiction in the house. Haven’t bought a bag in near onto 3 months.
Whew! That was a hard habit to break!
Anyways…
Onward and upward.
Winter is coming.
Boo.
😉

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Friday’s Hunt June 4th

So, we’re well on our way to having the garden in…
Yesterday, The Kid and I got our last few small beds planted. She put in 300 kidney beans. Sounds like a lot, but you pretty much plant them, and then ignore them until the pods are finished and dried. The joy of a dry bean. However, that also means they don’t produce continuously, like most other beans. Bush bean, pole beans, they’ll produce more flowers and pods the more you pick them. Which is why we’ll also plant 2 types of pole beans, and a purple bush bean…for fresh eating and putting up for the winter.

Today, the plan is to work on the main garden bed…I did say, I will have a garden this year. It’s just going to take a whole lotta heavy lifting. 😉
Good thing we’re not afraid to get out hands dirty.

This week’s prompts for Friday’s Hunt hosted by Teresa at Eden Hills are Starts with V, Week’s Favorite and Inch.

Starts with V

Now that we’re in June, summer vacation is coming up for The Kid. Already. The school year has flown past, I tell ya…
We won’t however, be taking any sort of family vacation. That’s just not something we can do…not with these guys:

My toddlers.

Truth be told, I’m not much of a vacation person anyways…I like to stay close to home, and I do love my Farm. 🙂
(And yes, Sable is doing exactly what you think she is…)

Week’s Favorite

3 horse down…flat babies in the sunshine.

Life rarely presents fully finished photographs.
An image evolves, often from a single strand of visual interest – a distant horizon, a moment of light, a held expression.

~ Sam Abell

Inch

My helper cat, Sir Maximillion…helping me do what I do best…take pictures of the horses at sunrise:

Thankfully, he helped without his usual stance of having his butt an inch from my face. It’s really hard to take pictures like that.
LOL!

Farm Kitties

Every where I go on the Farm, there’s a cat.
Here a cat…
There a cat…
Every where a cat, cat…

Today I wanted to take a few shots of the horses dozing in the sunlight. Instead, I took kitty pictures.

Xena, asking for belly rubs…

She does love a good belly rub, that girl!
Then I hear meowing…

Ghost (in front) and Trouble

Every where Ghost goes, it’s with a conversation. He’s a talker that boy. Oh, and he’s a pretty big fan of the whole belly rub thing too.
So much for my big tough TomCat!

“Do you mind??!?”
~Gabrielle

She popped into a hoof hole to have a pee…seemed like a fine time to take her picture. Clearly, she is not impressed!
Notice the Ghost influenced eyes…she is obviously his daughter, seeing as how her Mama (Fiona) was a Siamese with blue eyes.

Finally, one from Saturday…

Max and Ruby

Just in case you don’t understand why this is hilarious to me, here’s a link:

Max and Ruby

Happy Wednesday…only 5 more days to Spring!!

A Little Bit of Catching Up…

In the time since we last saw each other much has happened here on the Farm.

We got chickens…yup, 20 ex-battery hens. One of the local farming FB groups had an ad for these girls, cheap, at a year old. So, since I’ve been wanting chickens for eggs, I figured we could take a chance on some older girls who needed a soft landing.
June 4th, my Henny Pennys came home.
They’ll stay with us for a year or so. Next spring I’ll get replacement chicks and then these ladies will go to the soup pot.
While that may seem cruel, to soup pot them, their life between now and then is radically different from what they knew in the barns. There is a much higher quality of life for them here…a yard, grass, bugs to eat, space to roam…they’ll have it made here, until soup time. Because, not all animals that come to live here are pets.
It is a part of Farm life.
Here’s some pictures of them…

Ihop, the day she came home.

Ihop, the day she came home.

We named her Ihop because she had a bit of a limp when she came home. Whether that came from being squished under her crate mates in travel, or it happened before we got her, I don’t know. But, she was happy to come out of the crate, and just soak up her surroundings.

Ihop June 23rd, 2016

Ihop
June 23rd, 2016

This was Ihop yesterday. It’s become harder to take her picture, because she follows me around the chicken yard…and because her limp is almost gone, so it’s harder to distinguish her from the others. Hubby says I should band her leg, so we can keep track of her. She’s the only one I might consider keeping as a pet, come next spring. 😉

The hennys are fascinated with my crocs too. They’ll follow me around to peck at them, and if I stand still for a minute or two, I’ll have 5 or 6 hens checking out my shoes.

Chicken Croc
Chicken Croc2
Fascinating things to chickens, apparently. I told Hubby it’s a good thing I’m not afraid of birds, or them chasing me to peck my shoes might freak me out. lol!

Hubby is pretty interesting to the hennys too!

Hubby is pretty interesting to the hennys too!

Random henny enjoying the grass and weeds.

Random henny enjoying the grass and weeds.

Looking much better after 3 weeks. :)

Looking much better after 3 weeks. 🙂

Piggies have been growing well too…Farm friends came out to see them, and I learned that I have 3 females. Who knew?? Not me! I was going by what I was told when I picked them up, that I had 2 boys and 2 girls. I never did have a chance to see what sex the one was that we lost to heat exhaustion…it was swarmed by the Marauding Hoarde and disappeared in pretty short order.
Now, the girls like to dig and root and lie around in the mid day sun having a siesta…

Sleepy piggies...

Sleepy piggies…

When they’re sleeping like that, and I want pictures, I have to sneak up on them, and shoot fast. They all know who the Food Lady is and don’t stay sleeping long when they hear me coming. Might be some sorta yummy I’m bringing them, y’know. 😉

The past 3 weeks have also seen us doing a whole lot of porch sitting. After the work is done, of course.
With porch sitting, come the felines. They are all for me sitting and having coffee outside with them. They also like to knock my cup down so they can have some. *sigh*
But, this also brings photo ops.

Ghost

Ghost~Oh those eyes!!

This is clowder sire Ghost…or Ghostie Toastie as I like to call him.
He’s been relaxing more and more on the deck…it’s where the food is, so he wants to be near by. But, he also sits and listens to me talk to him. I’ve managed to touch him a few times, but that scares the cat pants off him. Poor guy. I’m sure he’s baffled by the friendliness the others show the humans.
We’ve been working on getting everyone fixed, and I’d love to get my hands on him and get him done. I know once all the girls are spayed, he’s likely to move on though. We’ll see if I can get him into the trap…he’s such a sweet boy with all the kittens, I’d hate to lose him…not to mention, he’s one hell of a hunter. He’s taken on geese and won. That’s no small feat! So yeah, rodents for him are easy peasy hunting. 😉 A hunter like that is a valuable Farm asset…one I’m hoping to keep.

Felix

Felix~he got Daddy’s eye colour!

Of course in a round of feline photography, there is a picture of Felix. He’s so photogenic, I have to take his picture. My handsome boy. ❤

Trouble

Trouble

Oh how this boy has lived up to his name this Spring!
He’s been trying to learn from Daddy Ghost how to hunt geese…let me tell you, when a cat doesn’t have the experience to do it, they come home with holes in their bodies.
*sigh*
That means wound care, a trip to the vet (unless he’s in the area, then he stops in) and days of raw honey treatments.
4 holes in this guy so far this spring…hopefully he’s learned by now!
Everything has healed up just fine though, and he’s darn near 100%.

GreyCat

GreyCat

Look at that smile! She was lying there watching Daphne play with her ball. GreyCat loves Daphne…not in the same hissing and smacking way Max loves her, but in the “roll on her, rub on her, lick her face” kinda way.

MaxCat <3

MaxCat ❤ My big sweet grumble puss.

And Daphne?

Wet Puppy

Wet Puppy

Daphne likes to play in the water…so much so that she’s still swimming in the troughs, chasing the hose, and flopping down in every stink puddle she can find.
I know there’s German shepherd in there, but there’s also some insane water dog breed inside that body too. Give that dog a ChuckIt! ball and a pool and you have the happiest dog on the planet.

Finally, a couple of shots of the Girls…

Astrid, looking so beautiful in the morning sun.

Astrid, looking so beautiful in the morning sun.

Sable decided to wash Astrid...

Sable decided to wash Astrid…

Cookie chewing the mud out of her feathers.

Cookie chewing the mud out of her feathers.

Oh, and one last shot before I wrap this up…
This guy…

HeronCame waltzing down my driveway, looking like he owned the place.
I snapped this shot, not knowing what kind of bird it was. Hubby tells me it’s a heron.
Alright then.
🙂

Friday’s Hunt 03.11.16

Hey! Look at that…I’m posting this on a Friday.
Yay me!!

Today’s weather was amazing, which made going out to take pictures an absolute pleasure. I have a few mixed in today, but have a bunch to share with y’all later next week. 😉

This week’s prompts are Starts with K, Week’s Favorite and Flower.

Starts with K was pretty easy…Kittens!
Even though my Felix is such a big boy, really he’s still a kitten. He’s only 10 months old. Today he was enjoying sunning himself on top of the straw bales…

Felix YawnAs you can see, I woke him up…nice yawn there, Mister!

Felix2Then he came over to the fence to help as I scratched Ms Cookie’s bum.
And by “help” I mean, he took a leap from my shoulder to her back…she, surprisingly, was not bothered by him at all. She lifted her head long enough to look at him, sigh, and went back to dozing in the sunshine. 🙂

Erik the Viking

Erik the Viking

Looking oh, so dignified.
Just about 6 months old, he is.

MaxCat

❤ MaxCat ❤

And finally, not a kitten, my MaxCat. My big snuggle bug. Though you’d never know it by the way he grumbles. He just like to talk while he sits with me. 😉

Week’s Favorite this week, hands down (pun intended) is this…

Oh Ms Cookie!

Oh Ms Cookie!

My sweet Girl. So patient with the things I do to her. ❤ She makes me smile, even on the roughest days.

Finally for Flower, I had to go back to August to find something…no flowers here now! Still too much snow.
This I took outside the small town grocery store. Every year they have barrel planters of flowers. This one decided to go off on his own and grow where he felt most needed…

Random flower, bringing beauty to the concrete and steel.

Random flower, bringing beauty to the concrete and steel.

Sharing with Friday’s Hunt hosted by Teresa at Eden Hills.

X is for e-X-citement

Yes, I know, I’m stretching it. 😛
Honestly,  I had wanted to go find a xylophone for Sable to play, but…um, that just didn’t happen. I had to get creative with an “x” word then.

The big e-X-citement around here is the installation of the new garden boxes/bed.
Last year, on July 1st, my garden flooded out. We had this insane dump of rain, the pasture was barely visible, the Girls were almost knee deep in water, and my garden (which was already 75% planted) was gone under water.
This year, we resolved to move the garden and build raised beds. Thankfully, Hubby’s work offers up scrap wood for the workers to take home on a rotating basis. He’s brought home much scrap wood! Enough to, with the help of a few pieces in the wood pile that was already here, build 9 3×3 foot beds, plus our main 40×24 foot area.

Whew, it’s been a lot of work getting them done, and our e-X-citement has been installing them.

Several of the raised 3x3 footers...

Several of the raised 3×3 footers…

A few more of them...

A few more of them…

These are placed in between the apple and pear trees. I figure there’s easily enough space in between for beds. I mean, it’s going to be a while before we see fruit of them anyways, why have dead space? Can’t let the horses graze there, they’d just destroy the trees, but, I can grow food there. And the more food I can grow (and put up for the winter), the better.

Augering holes...

Augering holes…

In the “W” post, I showed you one side of the main bed…here’s Hubby using the tractor to dig the holes for the posts. No way are we going to dig them by hand! And really, we have this tool at our disposal, so why not use it?
Once we have the bed in place, I’ll share some pictures of that. 🙂

Of course, with all this going on, it’s bound to attract the attention of the animals. The e-X-citement is just too much for them to resist…

Sable ExcitementSable had to come see what all the noise was about…and then she was disappointed she couldn’t reach the tractor. lol! She has this love affair going on with it…well, she really just wants to chew the paint off. Goober!

Ruby ExcitementThis was all so exciting to Ruby that she had to stop and poop. Hahahaha!!

Sunset CookieCookie was coming over to get a little shedding done…I had the shedding blade in hand to scrape away at who ever wanted it done. Surprisingly (and to my e-X-citement!) Cookie was more than happy to let me get rid of some more of her winter coat.

Astrid No ExcitementAstrid just wanted to eat the green bits coming up.

Ninja DogDaphne had the fun and e-X-citement of being sprayed with the hose, and playing Ninja Dog. That’s where she barks and flips and scrambles out of the way of the water jet…it’s a game she loves to play.

And finally, with the noise and e-X-citement of the tractor making holes, my MaxCat decided that he needed to protect me from the scary, noisy thing.

Lying on my foot.

Lying on my foot.

That’s my Max, he guards me from danger and scary things every chance he gets. 😉

X is for e-X-citement.

Sharing with Jenny Matlock’s Alphabe-Thursday.

Outdoor Cats

The barn cats got a new house. They still have free run of the garage, but they now have a house up on the deck too. Stuffed full of straw for warmth.

Cat house

Cat house, with Max and Polo.

We brought home a load of hay…

4000lbs of hay on our new-to-us trailer.

4000 lbs of hay on our new-to-us trailer.

Which quickly turned into a kitty cat hot spot…especially when the sun was out.

Fiona

Fiona

Polo

Polo

Fiona and Polo

Fiona and Polo

The ever elusive Marco...

The ever elusive Marco…

Yup, even Marco came out to enjoy the sunshine on a hay bale.
What a life these guys have…warm places to sleep, hay to bask in the sunshine on, endless amounts of food and fresh water, plus so much hunting to do!

Compare that to what my indoor cats get to experience…

Freyja

Freyja

I’m not sure who has the better life… 😛

Sharing for Wordless Wednesday with Create With Joy, Blog Paws and Crafty Spices.