Archive for ‘King’

January 21, 2014

A week in photos

It was such a busy week! I managed to finish Rachel’s quilt for her 10th birthday, a project that’s been 2 years in the making. I fall into UFO (unfinished object) funks and quilts in particular fall to the wayside unfortunately but finishing it has given me renewed vigor to finish a few that have been on the back burner.

This was a sentiment I heard at one time. I don’t know the author to credit but suffice to say, these are borrowed words.

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King and Snow doing what King and Snow do. The sun’s out and it’s day time which means they snooze and relax and keep watch.

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Sunday was gorgeous and the goats were thoroughly enjoying the sunshine. We finally got the round bales off the trailer. The girls had pretty much eaten one entire bale down to 1/4 of what it started as. We unloaded it into the barnyard so they could munch on it. Most of them just turned in into a cozy bed . Most of the does are bred, some further along than others. It’s a time of growing good healthy babies!

Mother Daughter Flicker and Bourbon

Mother Daughter Flicker and Bourbon

hay bale free for all

Granite

Granite

While there isn’t a whole lot to eat from the looks of it, the pigs enjoy nibbling the grasses and rooting up tasty things. Ann is due to farrow around February 14.

Ann

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The chickens still range in the winter and find tasty tidbits to eat, there was still a little snow on the ground last week.

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Sunday Jeremiah and I finished the greenhouse by installing the back window and the plastic on front and back. we also put pipe insulation over the end of the panel and maybe that will cause a little less wear and tear. The strips of lumber that the plastic is rolled up in seems to be doing a good job. We had some pretty forceful winds last night and all it all looks good.I am so eager to start seeds. I went through what I saved from last year and what was left over. I hope to start a lot of flower seeds this year along with all the veg.

Front

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back

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greenhouse window from inside

Em kidded on Sunday while we worked on the greenhouse. I checked on her every so often. The first kid (boy) was totally breech but he delivered fine. The 2nd kid (doe) was still encased in her sack. I am glad I was there. Usually they are not delivered in their sack and there is no obstruction. When they are, if the doe is not attentive or there isn’t anyone there, they generally suffocate. The 3rd kid (a buck) was delivered about 20 minutes later without incident and Em looks fantastic. Shes enjoying a stall to herself to get to know her kids. I’ll post more photos later, these kids are super flashy!

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The following photo was not taken last week, but it is a reminder that we have our nuc colonies ordered from Butler Bees. Jeremiah and I are going to tackle the top bar bee hives and leave the langstroth hives to the construction class.

Well, there it was. We were at an auction Saturday and managed to bring home a pretty decent haul of lumber, a huge miscellaneous lot of trim/moulding/baseboards, 125 sheets of sheet rock and 13+ new bundles of shingles. I haven’t yet decided if we’ll shingle the new milk house, I’ll have to chew on that some more. We’re trying to stay somewhat color & material coordinated, the shingles on the house are brown, everything else is metal. We’re going with metal.

November 20, 2013

November now…

Last week the wind howled here in central Kansas and we were watching the last of the leaves fly off the trees. Two mornings were bitterly cold with wicked wind chills in to the teens and 20’s. I don’t mind the cold but the wind chills just cuts right through everything.

The animals don’t seem to mind the cold yet too much. One of the bucks got his head stuck in a feeder last Monday night and stayed stuck until I found him Tuesday morning. It took a bit of manipulation to get him out and fortunately he was no worse for the wear though they did say the windchill over night was something like 13 degrees and he didn’t have a single bit of protection. I did not have kind words for him as I tried to wrangle him out of that feeder from the outside of the fence. I was not about to get in there with 3 other bucks intend on having their way with me. I preoccupied them with some alfalfa which sent the stuck buck into a frenzy wanting some too which made getting him out even harder! I was eventually successful however!

Last week we got a roof put onto the small roving coop that I use as a grow out pen for the chicks. We also put in a few roost rungs. The Sept. chicks have nearly outgrown it and we need to move them into the roving coop we made for the meat chickens, but that needs roosts too.

I expect to be putting new eggs into the incubator about January. A few of the last incubated Sept. batch were roosters and of the 2nd batch, 2 of the 6 chicks I picked up from the farm store were roosters as well. I feather sexed all those but they were already a couple of weeks old and it’s supposed to be impossible to tell at that point so I was taking a shot in the dark on a straight run. They’re 2.5 months old at this point and left for their new home yesterday and now the roving coup is a little more spacious =).

We kept 12 meat chickens back for ourselves when we butchered in Sept. to grow them out a little longer. Some do tend to be on the slower growth scale as they do not get as much food as the others. We butchered 6 the weekend before last and left 6 seeing as how most of them were really close to laying eggs. I felt kinda of bad actually to loose laying age hens but they didn’t start out as intended layers anyway. I really never planned to keep these as long as we did but they all look so great so I’d like to see how they do.

The pigs are well,  they spend cold mornings burrowed under the straw in their shelter. We’re thinking about possibly butchering out the boar but still haven’t made a final decision on that. We may have piglets again as early as Feb 14. Kinda wishing I had kept them separated a little longer for a March litter but February it may be. We’ll just have to see.

Snow and King’s 2 pups are reserved. The male will be hitching a ride with us to California when we go for Christmas and will be going to a friend of mine and the female will be staying somewhat local in Marion, Ks. Her new family came to meet her on Wednesday. They’ll be fantastic for each other.

Goat breeding has been entirely strange! We went about 2 months it seemed with few of the does coming in to a good strong heat and now its seems like it’s one right after another. I don’t know what that’s all about, maybe the weather. I have just one doe due in January, 2 in Feb and 2 in March. I don’t particularly like kidding in the freezing cold but I do like the earlier kids. The first doe will bring milk production back up as we’re winding down on the other does now and drying them off one by one except the yearlings who are still going really strong and should right on through Christmas.

We’re having the high school building construction class build our milk barn. Time is slipping away for us while we work on other projects and we’ve been waiting for the 2nd trimester to start for them as to give them ample time to get it done. It’s a great experience for the kids. We went and looked at metal siding and roofing last Friday so everything is ready for them to start and hopefully by January we’ll have it delivered and it’ll be ready to milk in once babies start hitting the ground. More than anything I want the separate processing area with counter and sink instead of having to lug the milk bucket up to the house. Making cheese and soap out there is also part of the plan as well. I’d love to find a small wine fridge for cheeses to put out there!

Jeremiah and the kids spent part of Sunday splitting wood and got the majority of what was in rounds completely split with the help of the 3 girls who belong to a friend that are staying with us for the week. The log splitter has been a life saver this year! It was a life saver last year too but it has been especially handy this year as we’ve been behind and didn’t even start the bulk of the cutting in Oct. like we normally do. We pulled several large logs this out of the woods this past spring but have mainly just had large piles of rounds waiting for the time to split it. After last winter being so long, we had maybe 2 weeks worth of wood left to burn that was pre-split and stacked this spring when all was said and done. We’re nearly through that now but have been building up the supply right behind it and we’ll do more than we normally do if the weather prediction is any indication of how much we might need! They all did a terrific job.

Last year I joked with the kids that it would be really nice if we could get enough split and stacked to cover us for the winter plus half of another so we were always ahead if we continue to split at the same rate. Well, last winter proved to require quite a bit more than the previous. So much for being ahead half a year =).

The evenings get dark so quickly that doing anything outside with any decent amount of light after Jeremiah gets home from work is pretty much unheard of so we try to take full advantage of the weekends, especially the nice ones! 

There are several craft fairs coming up that we’ll be at and a community project that we’re gearing up for. Today I am hitting the machine to make a few quick craft projects that should be really fun! It hardly seems possible that Thanksgiving is nearly upon us! Once school starts in the fall the days just fly by. My Grandma always used to tell me that time moves even quicker once you are grown up. I never did understand her…until now. Gosh.

The broccoli and cabbage in the garden are looking pretty bedraggled after last weeks over night temps and I think it’s about time to put the pigs out there to clean it up. All of the garden tools have been put up now and the yard cleared of summer things. It’s time for the earth to rest and renew.

And with that said, it’s time to start a new day!

Have a great week!

 

November 4, 2013

Snow’s fall litter

Snow delivered a very small but very healthy litter of 2 pups 4.5 weeks ago, a male and a female. The male pup will be following us to California in December to his new home. The female pups is unspoken for at the moment reserved. Friday they ventured into the main part of the barn. They are at the age where everything needs to be explored and time always needs to be taken out to play wrassle!

February 8, 2012

Wordless Wednesday-photos for fun

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