Catching y’all up…

I’ve been working on writing this post now for a few days…
There seems to be so much going on, that I don’t know where to start, or how to put things into words.
And yet, its typical summer time things…

Weed/water the garden
Care for the animals
Cut, rake, bale hay
Clean the house
Make the meals
Clean the kitchen
Start again the next day…

I’m finding myself exhausted before the day even begins.
And I’m trying really hard *not* to whine about it.
Which is a huge part of why writing this post has sat and sat and sat…

I am very happy to share that the garden is on track to produce the best crop this year.
We should have a bumper crop of bush beans, if flowers are any indication.
There are crazy amounts of flowers on the zucchini…I’m so excited for a lot of zucchini. I think I’m probably the only person in the world who *hopes* for a huge zucchini crop.
I love it in everything. And now, I’ve found a pickle recipe that uses zucs instead of cukes! I so want to try that!

Daily watering has made a huge difference.
That’s something I struggle with, because we haven’t yet fixed the hose tap on the house, so we’re running a hose from the yard hydrant over by the garage.
That’s a couple hundred feet…and my hose is holy.
OMG
That sounds like a terrible country song!!

“Waterin’ ma garden
With a holy hose
I’m waterin’ more weeds
Than ma tomatoes”

πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚

Point is…I need a new hose. Or a few to put together, that won’t water the weeds while I’m trying to water the food forest.

Oh and we had a heat wave the last week or so…
It was hotter than…well, it was hot.
We lost almost half of our meat chicks.
Talk about frustration.
These guys are supposed to be our winter food, but if I lose them early, it makes it so much harder to get enough put up to feed everyone through to next year.
I did contact the hatchery and had a good chat with the owner, who gave me some tips for next time.
Fingers crossed that all grow well for us now!

Sable is feeling much better!
Though I’ll tell you, she’s probably so sick of me by now.
I’m all over her ever day to make sure she’s feeling better.
I have been so worried about her…let me tell you, lose one and it breaks your confidence. Or, at least it did mine.
So, I’m trying not to be a pain in the Vet’s ass, while still trying to make sure that our Cinder-Bella is healthy.
Add into that my ridiculous anxiety about making phone calls…sweet merciful crap, now *that’s* a pain in the ass!
Like when we finished Sable’s shots, and we found she was losing skin in spots…I had to call and find out if this was a side effect of the drugs, or was this something else.
Then, we found the same thing going on with Ruby on her chest.
Turns out, it was reactions to horsefly bites.
Something I should have recognized, and been able to handle without a vet call, but I panicked.
Jeez, I’ve always prided myself on not being “that owner” who calls over every little thing…yet, here I am.

But, the good thing about the Girl’s skin…
I did a betadine scrub on them, to clean up the loose skin, coated them in SWAT (to protect from the damn bugs) and now everyone is good again.
All the hair has grown back in.
So I’m lighting daily smudges, as the wind allows.
That’s the only thing that’s effectively combating the stupid horse flies. That layer of smoke on the mare’s coats gives them a couple of hours protection after they leave the safety of the smudge smoke.

I did get a chance to photograph a lovely prairie sunset the other day:

See the mares at the bottom?
❀

So, y’know, I’m trying to focus on the beauty and splendor of country living, instead of whining all the time.
LOL
Sometimes though, it feels like all I’m doing is whining.
πŸ˜‰

Soon enough, harvest will happen.
*Then* I’ll whine, out loud, often and with gusto.
As we put chickens and pigs in the freezer, I pull out the pressure canner for veggies, and tomato products, and with a whole lotta Bambi Dancing luck, we get a deer or two to add to the freezer.
Then I’ll be whiney and tired, more than I am now, and I’ll be longing for the quite days of hay, weeding and watering.

Winter is coming.

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Bacon Seeds

The bacon seeds have arrived!!

Just about 6 weeks later than last year.
But, life happens.
We were getting close to drought conditions right around when we normally would get piglets, and I was concerned about bringing more livestock onto the Farm without being 100% sure I could keep everyone watered and healthy on the well.

So, we waited.
Then we got amazing rainfalls (that took out my garden a time or two) and now we’ve had good, regular rains (which have been helping my garden…and the weeds in it!).
That eased my worries about water.
Then, we just had to wait for schedules to align to go pick these guys up…that was yesterday.

Behold, our cute little bacon makers!

Bums!

We brought home 6 little baconettes to grow for as long as possible before winter hits.
πŸ™‚

Damage Report

Well, so if Thursday’s thunderstorms were delightful, last night’s storm was frightful.

The day was beautiful for the most part.
Hot and melty, which always means there’s a chance of a thunderstorm.
I went ahead and cleared out a few of the small garden beds and planted my hot peppers.

After chores were done, I had a few minutes to have a coffee, before Hubby got in with groceries.
Well, The Kid and I watched the wind whip up and just as it started to rain, we figured we should go put the birds to bed.

Aaaaannnnd just as the last bird house was closed the wall of water hit us…

After the storm…

Before the storm the ground wasn’t dry, but it wasn’t showing any puddles. Everything from Thursday’s storms had already soaked in…last night it came down so hard and fast, the ground didn’t have a chance.

My crappy cell phone picture was taken about 10 minutes after the storm passed. The ground was already absorbing the moisture, so as much as you can see, there was more.

Preliminary reports are that we got just about 35mm of rain in about 45 minutes.
That’s a lot of water in just a little bit of time.

Today, I’m seeing what kinda damage we’ve got…

Good news first!

All the animals are fine.
No injuries on mares.
Everyone’s legs are good, might have a sore back or two from running about in the mud and muck, but that’s easy peasy to handle with liniment. πŸ™‚

Chickens and ducks are just happy to be out of coops.
Ducks were mad we made them go to bed early last night, but today they’re enjoying the puddles and earth worms all over the poultry yard.

All outdoor cats are accounted for.
Wet, a little grumpy, but everyone came to the deck for breakfast and pets.

Daphne just wanted to play in the puddle this morning…lol
And indoor cats, well, they just slept through most of it.

Sump pump has been working without issue.
Thank the Gods of Electricity!!

Now the not so good news…

Water in the basement from 2 spots.
The ground has been so dry for so long, once the water came, it couldn’t hold it back. No damage to anything, just wet spots.

Had a leak in the master bedroom…there’s a spot on the side of the house at the roofline that needs repair to the siding/metal roof.
Guess what we’re doing tomorrow?

And then, there’s my poor garden…

I had put in 13 of my tomato plants on Thursday.
I thought I lost them after that storm, but it looked like they held on, and with a bit of tlc, would be fine.
Not today.
Done. Gotta replace ’em.

Hot peppers?
What hot peppers?
There is no sign whatsoever that I had planted hot peppers.
Gotta replace them too…

Pasture is still under some water, so I’ll have to keep an eye on hooves. We made it this far without thrush, hopefully we don’t get hit with a round of it now.
But, even if we do, I have treatments that can put a stop to it fast.
And, tomorrow, I just may do a pre-emptive treatment, just in case.

All in all, we got hammered, but as always, we’ll pick up the pieces and keep going.
At least now I don’t have to worry about the pasture drying out and dying off too soon. The land really needed the water.
Rain barrels are full for when we do need to water the garden, and to give the chickens.
I’m not frantically worrying about the state of my well in drought like conditions.
The burn ban in the area should be lifted.
Once the water soaks in, the wheat on the big field ought to be just fine.
And everyone came through the storms healthy…

Can’t ask for much more than that.
Well, I *would* like to hit it big in the lottery, but that’s a whole different discussion.
LOL!
πŸ˜‰

Feline Friday

Last night, we had the absolute pleasure of thunderstorms rolling through.
We finally got some much needed rain!
While we humans enjoy the thunder and lightning, the indoor cats have differing opinions about it all…

“go ‘way…sleeping”

Nancy just didn’t care.
Neither did the oldsters, Freyja (who didn’t even lift her head) and Odhinn (who likes deer…he just wants y’all to know that)…

The geriatrics of the indoor cats…

And then there’s Daisy Mae…


Daisy Mae would like you all to know that thunderstorms are scary, lightning is scary and that yelling at Mom about things being scary doesn’t help because Mom yells back.

Seriously though, she was the only one who was freaked out about the storm. Once I caught her, she settled into my lap and only jumped with the overly loud thunder claps.
This morning, she did her usual shrieking at me, to make sure i knew she wasn’t happy I was making fun of her.
Oh well.
She’ll get over it.

Sharing with Comedy Plus for Feline Friday.
Have a great weekend, y’all!

A Little Farm Update

Dry.
Dry.
Dry.

It’s really dry here. We need rain something fierce.
For growth, to stop fires, for overall health.

But, in the midst of the dry, we do have some growth happening on the fruit trees…and, we’ve (finally) moved the chicks into the chicken coop.
YAY!!!

Apples are starting to leaf out…

Honeyberries are blossoming…

Red currants are popping with leaves…

And because our red currant bushes are so new, they’re still rather small. Which makes them easy prey to fall to Daphne…

Pail protecting a newer currant bush…

I had a few extra 3 gallon pails, so I cut the bottoms out and used them the shield the plants from the turbo power of the Daphne running them over. πŸ˜‰

Finally…
The best news!
All chicks have vacated the house, and the garage.
Chicken coop renos are done and they have moved into their new, and permanent home.
Just because I’m mean, I laughed at the few hennys we have left and said “Your replacements have arrived!!”
Hahahahaha!!!
πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚

Onward and upward to the next task…

Getting the garden tilled so we can plant my HUGE tomato plants.
I hope this bodes well for a bountiful harvest!

I’ve never really viewed myself as particularly talented.
I’ve viewed myself as slightly above average in talent.
~ Will Smith

That Time I Got to Photograph Cavalia Horses…

Every now and then, I get the pleasure of going off Farm with my camera.
Every now and then, I get the pleasure of photographing someone else’s horses.
Today’s post is all about a journey I went on last month, and some horses I was lucky enough to meet.
πŸ™‚

It all started with a late night tag on a Facebook post in a local horse group…someone was looking for local equine bloggers, a friend tagged me, and I explained what I do here (with the required sometimes salty language warning πŸ˜‰ ).
Next thing I knew, the lady looking for bloggers had sent me a message with an amazing offer…

Now understand, this is well after Hubby and The Kid have gone off to bed, I’m sitting with a cup of tea and a cat in my lap editing photos, when I get this message.
Let me tell you, the cat hit the floor, and Hubby was awakened with:

“WAKE UP!!!
You have to book Friday off…I’ve just been invited to an event that I have to go to…”

To which I got a mumbled “Huh? What?” from Hubby…

“Dude!! I’ve been invited to join the media folks to meet the Cavalia Odysseo horses!!!”

Well, that woke him up, and he very much agreed, this was an opportunity that was not to be missed. πŸ™‚
And his boss was awesome, giving him the day off with such short notice!

Friday dawned cold…it was like January had come back for its 137th day.
Didn’t dampen my enthusiasm even a little bit. Though, I do wish I had worn a warmer jacket, but hey, that’s what hot coffee is for, right?

We followed all the directions, and finally made it to the private farm where the horses were enjoying their vacation between shows.
Once everyone arrived, we were introduced to Cavalia people who would be sharing some of the horses with us…now, if I had been smart, I would have written names down. But, truth be told, my excitement was all about the horses. I had camera in hand and I just wanted to take pictures.

And I bet y’all want to see them, right?
The best of the images I took that day?
All right, let’s get to it. πŸ™‚

The first paddock we came to had these two ripping around it…

Having just come from a performance run in Arizona, all the horses we were introduced to were wearing blankets.
I’m sure they appreciated it!

Utah…
So amazingly handsome!

Y’all know me, I love me a Paint…and this guy was simply gorgeous. ❀

When you’re having fun running around and throw a shoe…lol

This is Marc-Olivier Leprohon, Cavalia’s Artistic & Equestrian Operations Director. He was showing us around with the horses, and answering any questions we might have had.
Once again, I was far too busy taking pictures to ask questions.

Along came the Arabians…

These guys just had a grand time galloping around us.
And yes, all of the 70 horses in the show are either stallions or geldings. (we didn’t get to meet all of them, just a handful, to be clear)

Stopped to snort πŸ˜‰

It was clear, watching these horses enjoy some free play time, that they love to perform. It didn’t take them long to figure out that this was another performance, but one where they could do whatever their equine hearts desired. Oh, and they sure did have fun!

❀

One of my favorites of the day:

Is it bad that I wanted him to snort on her camera?
It really was sweet how curious he was about her…

Once we were done photographing the Arabians having fun, we were taken over to meet the smallest equine member of the cast…

Miniature horse named Renaissance…

Oh my, he was a cutie!
He was a feisty little guy too…he’s just 2 1/2 years old and still a stud, so he has a mighty big attitude to go with that adorable package.
He darn near stole the show for the day.
Until we met the biggest guy in the show…

Gavilan

*swoons*
This guy…
This guy was the show stealer for me.
He’s a big boy, still a stud and oh so beautiful!
I was quite impressed with how well-behaved he was, all things considered.
New place, crazy winds and chilly, the mini stud challenging him every chance he got (I told ya, that boy was sassy!!) and he stayed pretty calm, cool and collected.

One of my favorites of him and the groom:

“My human…such a goooood human”
πŸ˜‰

From there, we (Me, Hubby and The Kid) wandered back to the paddock where the Paint was for a few more shots…

Ah, that sassy Paint side eye…gotta love that look! ❀

It was a wonderful way to spend a chilly morning and I’m so happy to have been offered the chance to go.
πŸ™‚

Cavalia Odysseo opens in Winnipeg May 12th.
If you have the chance to check the show out, do so!
You won’t be disappointed!