Posts tagged ‘weather’

April 10, 2013

This is April?

Yesterday brought some weird weather over much of Kansas. The kids and I were in town, Rachel is shorts and a t-shirt. It was so warm and humid during morning chores I was sweating! By the time we walked out of Hobby Lobby the temp. had dropped 30 degrees to 46 and we were none to happy to be out without jackets! It sprinkled some and by 2 o’clock pelting ice-hail balls were smacking the roof  of the house.

By 3 PM it poured rain, much to my delight. The rain tapered off around 6:30 PM only to pick back up violently by 8 PM with a lovely thunderstorm, big old drops of rain and the sky lighting up and and over and loud cracks of thunder! I LOVE a good thunderstorm.

I walked out to do evening chores yesterday between pelting ice hail and the goats were nowhere in sight. Odd, I thought, since the weather was awful, it was not like them to be away from the barn! The neighbor called just then to say they were in the next door neighbor’s woods happily munching away on the new rye grass sheltered by all the trees. Their house sits up on a hill and they can look down into parts of our proeprties.  The wind must have popped the chain loose on the walk through gate we have between our neighbor’s property and ours, or the does learned how to unlatch the chain! “Oooooooooh girls!” , I yelled. They all came a’runnin’, babies in tow. They know a tasty meal when they hear it, and when they don’t too =).

Last night the show outside was too good not to watch. We opened the blinds in our bedroom to a window that faces north and fell asleep listening to the the rain hitting the thirsty soil, the wind howling, the thunder clanging and the lightening lighting up the night sky.

About 2 AM the power was surging and the carbon monoxide alarm kept going off to alert us that the power had it working again. Yeah, thanks for that!

I suited up at 5:30 AM to check on everything/everyone in the barnyard.  The gate was frozen shut and I had to virtually wade through a lake to get to it. The dogs – who rarely venture into the barn except on very hot days to catch the breeze blowing through or during very bad weather- had made themselves right at home in amongst the goats. The goats were very pleased to get a very early breakfast to replace the dredges left over from the night before.

I was worried about our 2 month old chicks in the tractor as they have a tarp for cover and with that wind, I thought for sure it would go and I’d have chickencicles out there this morning but no, just a thick later of ice over the whole thing so much I couldn’t see them but heard them screaming for breakfast and water just the same! The doors were iced shut, fortunately the small door facing south had ice only on the inside so I was able to punch it open and get them a bowl of water and food, they were pleased and punch!

It’s really quite pretty out with a thick layer of ice incrusting everything, but also fairly dangerous as well! Two trees in our eastern pasture have broken. One at the trunk and another has broken a very large limb. The willow trees that normally have branches that hang low are weeping on the ground and other trees are waning their limbs very low nearly to the ground from the weight of the ice.

My Red Bud Tree out front that I so look forward to coming back to life again was just about to be gorgeous. Now, it’s frozen in time.

I planted strawberries, 4 big ol’ pots of them, 2 days ago. They were the only plants I forgot to cover. Our neighbors generously shared about 40 starts with us. Jeremiah and I dug them up Sunday. We picked up some lovely 15 gallon pots at a farm auction a couple of Saturdays ago. I had planned to make them potato pots, but I took 4 of the 12 and planted strawberries instead. So we get a few less potatoes =). I should have put straw over the strawberries, I sure hope they are okay. Their saving grace was being flanked on the north by the greenhouse so I did not really see ice on them at all this morning. The pots are much too heavy to move into the greenhouse but I did go out last night and put the blueberry bushes in.

We’ll see how the fruit trees do. A couple of them are leaning but should right easily once the ice melts, which may be tomorrow. Some of them already had buds on them, some did not.

Our 2nd round of chicks started hatching on Sunday. The “dry incubation” method worked SO much better than the “no hatch” method that we followed on the incubators directions. It’s a shame to loose chicks!

The tomatoes, peppers, eggplant, broccoli, and cabbage are all up in the greenhouse. Quite a few herbs are up as well. Even with a thick layer of ice, it was still warm in there this morning. Gotta love that!

It’s still very cold out and overcast. We may get a little snow on top of the ice before it’s all said and done but, it’s April right? Things HAVE to get warmer from here, right?

Have a great day!

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October 17, 2012

Fine fall day

     It’s a right bit windy this fine fall day. A good (clothes) drying day, as my Grandma would say. Good drying day indeed, if you can keep the clothes on the line that is!

     The girls were antsy to get out to the pasture this morning after milking. I took the children to school and as soon as we stepped outside, I noticed that the wind had been busy blowing the leaves off the trees overnight. I hope I have enough time to collect all those leaves before the wind takes them to the neighbors! It makes excellent fodder in the dead of winder when hay seems rather redundant.

     No sooner had I finished milking the last doe that they all took off for leafier pastures. They’re no fools, they know what awaits them beyond. The bucks didn’t even stay to finish their hay. What, with all the mulberry, ash, cottonwood and locust leaves that have fallen, can you blame them?

     The pigs, on the other hand, preferred not to come out of their warm straw bedded shelter this morning for leaves until I started calling, “Pig, pig, piggy!”. At that point they know soups on. Or rather, warm clabbered milk mush is served and they best not be straggling otherwise the others would be happy to eat their portion.

     It’s always so funny to hear the commotion of the barnyard at different times of the day. In the morning, the milkers are calling from their side of the barn, urging me out to get on with the day. The chickens throw an absolute hissy in the coop if I do not let them out as soon as the pigs are fed as they tend to like to get in on the vittles. The pigs have a fine way of scooting just the right amount of wheat up and over the trough and onto the ground and boy are the hens happy that they are so generous. Never-mind that I also take pity on the pour souls and toss them a few handfuls of wheat as well so they’ll stay out of the milk parlor looking for the dregs. Mind you, the goats aren’t so willing to share their goodies from their feed bowls. It’s been too nice not to leave the door open while I milk, but then, this invites visitors and Lordy knows I can’t stand the chickens in the barn, let alone the milk parlor.

     The pigs are pretty perturbed if they are not fed on my way out. Occasionally I have my hands too full of milking supplies or barn supplies that I forgo feeding them first thing and stop to open the chicken coop and those piggies just squeal and yell and carry on until I walk back to pick up the trusty food pail. Most mornings I also have a bowl of goodies- left over from the previous day’s meals. Or, even better, fridge cleaning day!

     With the freeze that came, the garden is kaput and so I picked what I could, mostly to save seeds for next year’s garden and then opened up one side of the fence so the piggies could get in. Boy were they in hog heaven! Except, nothin’ is ever good enough and last night I went chasing one spotty pig around the orchard (or what will be the orchard. We call it the orchard, some day there will be trees in it). Rachel said it was great fun to watch me out the window trying to corral that unwilling piggy into a corner so I could grab a leg and get it back into its pen. It wasn’t all that willing to play along. Course, it didn’t help the goats were there “helping” by sniffing and leaping in my way while trying to figure out what this creature was doing on their side of the fence. Finally I was able to hook a back and leg and while it didn’t squeal as I expected it too, I knew I’d have a devil of a time holding it while it whipped around trying to get away so my best option was to grab the other back leg and wheelbarrow style move it back to its pen. That seemed to work pretty good.

     You wouldn’t believe it, but this morning while I was walking up to the house after chores, there was plain evidence it wasn’t the first time at least one of those piggies was out where it was not supposed to be which was made clear by the rooting marks in the dirt where there should be none. Darn piggies. I had to fix them, it didn’t help that the garden gates were not latched at the bottom. I guess I was asking for piggies to take liberties. Ahhhh well, all’s well that ends back up in the pen, I guess.

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