Autumn

Autumn is a second spring when every leaf is a flower.

~ Albert Camus

Nope, my world is not on fire…just an amazing sunset.

Today is the Autumn Equinox.
It’s officially Fall now.
Are you ready for winter?
We’re still not.
Between meat chickens, pigs, getting the winter’s hay and straw home, putting the garden to bed, and getting the ducks lined up for winter, it feels like there is so much to do yet.

❤ Cookie ❤

Yes, you’re seeing that right, she’s eating hay.
Already.

Y’see, we had a very, very dry August.
The pasture that normally holds them until mid-October is pretty close to done. So, they’re on hay now. A month early.

Oh, but we’re getting rain now!
In time to make the butchering difficult to get done.
We really do need the moisture, even if the timing kinda blows.
Ahhh, farm life…an ever changing, always adapting, oh Goddess how are we gonna get it all done, kinda life.
😉

But…

PonyFace is still halter-less.
She hasn’t dropped any weight, and she’s been herself.
If nothing else, that makes me happy.
I feel like we’ve finally broken down that mental fence that stood between the “broken” horse and the horse who feels free to be herself.
So there is that to count as a success.

The rest?
Well, we’ll get it done in time.
😉

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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.
😉

Winter is Coming

And I’m already tired.

The nights have been cooler.
The days, when not raining, well, not so much.
But the nights are cooler, and there is a definite scent of Fall in the air.

I’m not ready.
There is so much work to do before we can settle in and say we’re ready for Winter.
The good news?
I have the hay money all set aside for a full delivery of hay, not a month to month purchase like last year.
Thank Epona for that!! Just have to get that arranged…

But before winter comes we have so much other stuff to do…
I have to start 2nd cut on my hay.
Now it’s going to be just the front, around the fruit trees.
Hubby used the mower on the tractor to cut the back yard because we had people come out for our Anniversary party.
The grass wasn’t quite long enough for hay yet, and we needed to not sit in mosquio-ized grass.

There’s this guy…

Meat chicken…

And 48 of his friends (we lost one last weekend to a “piling” incident) to get ready for their Freezer Camp session…

As well as this guy…

Andy Piggie

And 5 of his pals to do the same with.
Plus, once the pig processing starts, I’m hoping to run the smoker for a few days and get some hams and bacon done as well.
Last year I didn’t get bacon done before winter, and um, I was sad.
LOL!
Having home smoked bacon for the winter months will be wonderful…but pigs don’t start the Freezer Camp journey until into October, and the weather can be unpredictable then.
Of course, now that Hubby’s garage is cleaned up, I can run it in there in cases of inclement weather.
So, that’s a huge bonus!

I’m also working on getting this one…

Used to wearing a blanket.
It’s been a slow and steady process, and neither one of us have died yet.
That’s good. 😉
I figure with the way the weather has effected her the past couple rough seasons, being able to toss a blanket on her (and Sable as well) will go a long way towards my sanity through the long cold months.
Normally, I don’t worry about blankets for the Girls, but the 2 Old Ladies sometimes just need a little extra help.
And it’s my responsibility to make sure they get it.

And then there’s these 2…

Quack quack quack

Ducks are new to me.
I’ve never wintered ducks before.
This is a learning experience, and again, it’s my responsibility to make sure they get what they need.

Oh, and there’s the garden to put to bed, once things are done there.
That should be done before pigs go to Camp, so that the pigs can eat some of the left overs…pea plants, bean plants, carrot tops…that sorta thing.
Sadly, can’t give ’em potato plants or tomato plants, because nightshade family, so those will be burned.
Then we can cover in manure, pull the tarp and stake it down.
All so we can be ready for next spring, when the plan/hope is to get the whole of the garden planted.

We’re also hoping to set the fence posts for the next pasture.
I know, said that last summer/fall, but yeah, I really want either a milk cow or a couple steers next year to round out the meat freezers. Another pasture is a need, to be able to do either one.

At the end of the day, I know all will be well.
The Kid will miss a few weekends of riding lessons while the work gets done, we’ll work until we’re so tired we can’t think…then go do some more, and all will get done.
Why?
Because, it has to be done.
That’s the simple answer.

So, if you start seeing one picture posts, or no posts for a little while, it’s all good.
We’re just getting ready for the inevitable.
Winter is coming.

Friday’s Hunt March 19

I’ve been all about Spring this past week.
I refuse to let the weather (that has been very un-Spring-like) get me down.
Spring.
Spring.
Spring.
1 more day to Spring!!

For today, though, I’ve got my offering for the Friday’s Hunt hosted by Teresa at Eden Hills.
Prompts this week are Starts with K, Week’s Favorite and Drink.

Starts with K

Kitty!

Daisy Mae

She was only supposed to be a temporary indoor kitty, but the little pooh-stick turned into a permanent indoor resident.
It’s okay though…this girlie has personality to spare, and loves to talk up a storm. Here I caught her in the midst of talking to the trees and grass blowing about in the wind.

Week’s Favorite

My Old Man Odhinn…

Pretty Kitty ❤

14 years old, with a myriad of health issues, but still my main snuggle Kitty at night. Such a handsome boy! ❤

Drink

Heh. Lifeblood of the Universe…

Mmmmm, coffee!

Can’t start the day with out a good, steaming hot cup of coffee. 🙂

1 day, folks…
1 more day to Spring.

Friday’s Hunt Feb. 19th

What a lovely week of weather we’ve had!
It’s hard to believe it’s February. Yesterday we hit an amazing +6*c.
Sooooo nice!

The horses have been happily basking in the sunshine and the hennys have loved every second of outdoor time they’ve gotten. My birds are spoiled, they do not like to get cold, so when it’s below -15*c, I leave them in the coop. But this warmth? They’re loving boking ’round the chicken yard, snow drifts and all.

This week’s prompts are Starts with G, Week’s Favorite and Pink.
And here’s my images…

Starts with G

Who else could possibly be used for the letter G, other than my Ghost?

<3

My big, sweet, supposedly feral, TomCat.
The Kid and I worked hard on gaining this guy’s trust, and now, he’s the best barn cat ever. Even when he follows me around the Farm yard yapping up a storm. 😉

Week’s Favorite

Well, you saw that image the other day:

I love this shot so much...feral or friendly Palomino?!?

I love this shot so much…feral or friendly Palomino?!?

Definitely my favorite shot of the week.

Pink

This one is a close second though…just shot fresh this morning, with the help of The Kid.

pink-mintsMs Cookie lipping up pink mints from The Kid’s hand.
And, a huge thank you to everyone who’s been asking about her, offering wishes of good health and been checking up on us.
Thankfully, my big donkey is back to her normal, delightful self..
Eating her beet pulp happily, and scrapping with Astrid again.

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

Hay Run

We hooked up the trailer for another hay run yesterday…

Bringing home the food for nags...

Bringing home the food for nags…

I like to do this early on a Sunday morning.
Get it done early and the day is ahead for whatever else needs doing.
Like napping. 😉

On Friday, Hubby had brought home an apple jack for me.
Not the traditional apple jack (distilled apple juice…nom nom nom!) but the pastry, which is, basically, an apple hand pie rolled in cinnamon and sugar. That was my breakfast, with coffee, while we went up to the Hay Guy’s place.

Once home, I figured with the lovely sunlight, I’d go take a few pictures of the Girls, while Hubby unloaded hay and straw (for chickens)…well, it didn’t take long for someone to figure out I had eaten something that any horse would love!

"Uh. Huh. So, you dare come in here smellng like apples and you have none for me? Really?!?" ~Cookie

“Uh. Huh.
So, you dare to come in here with apples on your breath and you have none for me?
Really?!?”
~Cookie

I tried to tell her it was an apple jack, that there was cinnamon involved, that she doesn’t like cinnamon (she’ll leave her beet pulp pail uneaten if there’s even a hint of cinnamon in it!), and well, quite honestly, she didn’t need any sweets. Seriously, her butt jiggles when she walks…sweet apple pies are not what she needs.

Yeah, her face says it all.
“Uh. Huh. Screw you, hooman…”
😉