Chunky Monkeys

It’s been a bit of a dull winter for photos, so this past weekend Hubby suited up, pulled out the tractor, cleaned some 💩 and then made the Merry Mares run.

Okay, so he doesn’t *make* them run, they just know the game…he shakes the tractor bucket, they get silly, (running, bucking, kicking and rearing) and I take pictures.

Then, when it’s all done, there’s rub downs for sweaty horses and maybe a cookie or two.
And wine for the photographer. 😉

Is it time for cookies?
We’re ready for cookies, y’know…

First Snowstorm on the Farm

It wasn’t a huge storm, but just enough to cover the Farm in white and make having to pull the tractor out to clear it away necessary.
Hubby will do that in the morning, while I can up some kidney beans…I’m 33 jars away from putting up 300 for 2018.
Looking forward to what I can do in 2019 when I have a full year to work with. 🙂

While things are quiet, I’m working on my design for this year’s Christmas picture with the Merry Mares.
I didn’t do one last year (no surprise there) but I have an idea in mind for this year (and next) so I hope to get ‘er done tomorrow.
It’s supposed to be chilly, but the sun will be out and there’s not supposed to be any wind.
So nags must make with the pretties.

Our CinderBella is doing pretty darn good.
Had a few days where she needed previcox to ease the aches and pains of the arthritis, but things settled down for her as the weather did.
I was worried about how her jaw would handle the hay…but as long as she has enough to chew all night she does great.
It’s when they run out that her jaw stiffens up and she doesn’t want to eat. Of course, the best way to loosen things up *is* to eat, but horses don’t understand that. All she knows is it hurts.

So, we’ve gotten a big round bale of oat straw from friends, and that’s going out in the pasture for everyone to chew on as they please.
It’s taken us a bit to figure out exactly how to put it out for the nags…
I can’t put a round out in a feeder, because Sable.
I can’t just put the round out and let them eat, because it’s net wrapped and because Sable.
I don’t want to roll it out and have them using it as a toilet, because while there’s not a ton of feed value to it, there is roughage and chew/entertainment value, which makes a huge difference a. for arthritic jaws, and b. when it’s really effing cold (because horses keep warm by eating).

Finally, we hit upon 2 med. squares as the base, and the round placed flat on top. Cut the net wrap and let ’em chew.
That way they don’t soil the whole amount and they can pull off what they want to eat.
Fingers crossed this works well for our Sable.
The other two are so chunky…lol!
And, considering we’re headed into the coldest part of winter, fat ponies is no bad thing. 😉
We can whip ’em back into shape come spring.

Brrrrr!!

It’s been a chilly week!
But things here on the Farm are still chugging along.
🙂

The chickens are starting to lay with a little more consistency.
Finally!
We’ve waited a long time to get these eggie chicks to the point of lay. Soon enough, I should have some eggs that I can sell again.
That will be nice!
I’ve had a few green shelled eggs from the easter egger hens, but not many. I have 4 hens that should be giving me colours (maybe 5, I’m not 100% sure) but I’ve had 3 green eggs…and the easter eggers are older than the brown egg layers, who are getting a little more regular…

One morning last week though, it was really cold and I figured I best check the auto waterer to make sure the Merry Mares water hadn’t frozen over on them…imagine my surprise when Daphne dives under a board in the long grass…I’m thinking “oh shit, she found a skunk!!” but with no immediate stink blast, I figured that couldn’t have been it.
Nope.
Turns out she chased one of my little black hens off a nest of eggs…

16 eggs!!

Stinker had been out all night, instead of coming back to the coop, and was just plain lucky *something* didn’t find her in the night and make a meal of her!
But, she had 16 eggs under her, 10  of which were green.

Not knowing how long they were there, I took them away and float tested them. They seemed like they might be alright, but I still wasn’t sure. So, I cracked them all open.
Turns out, they were fine, though only a handful were fertilized.
Even if the all had been, it’s not a great time of year for chicks anyways…but I now know which hen could be broody in the spring. She, and a few other hens, will get separated off with the one rooster we keep to lay and set eggs in the spring for flock regeneration. Honestly, I’d love to get away from buying hatchery birds for eggs, if I can. And if I can get hens to do the hatching work that’s even better. I have no real interest in using an incubator.
I scrambled the 16 eggs and gave them to the chickens as a treat…their excitement at that made the sting of losing 16 eggs a little less painful.
lol

And then, there was Daphne and her stick…

“I want this one!”

Pulling the stick out of the hobo barrel fire pile…

“MY STICK”

She was rather proud of herself for getting it…

“I am triumphant!!”

*sigh*
My dog is weird.

Bobbing For Apples

Hubby was given a whole lot of apples.
More than 50lbs worth.
Nice apples too.
So, I sorted into “wine,” “eating” and “livestock” piles.
And then, we sent the Merry Mares bobbing for apples…

Astrid thought this was pretty awesome…until she snuffled in a nose full of water.
Then, not so fun!

Pretty Sable…I love her natural black eyeliner…looks so good on her. 🙂

😍😍😍😍

Sable looks disgusted at how deep Ruby was willing to go for an apple. lol

Got it!!
Nom nom nom

She’s rather dedicated when it comes to food.
😉

We still have half a 5 gallon pail for the horses, a crisper full for humans, and I just pulled the bag of apple mush out of the fermenting wine. That made little piggies very, very happy!

Next wine prospect…
Either concord grape or banana.
Or, maybe I’ll mix the 2.
Because that might just be interesting.
😉