Saturday, December 22, 2007
It's a good skill to have.
Why? I'm never going to butcher chickens again when I am grown.
Well, maybe not, but at least you will have the skill if you ever need it, or want it. You might want to feed your family healthy food one day.
OK, I already know all this. I could do one from start to finish without any help, so can I go wash dishes or something now?
You can? Great, show me!
Friday, December 21, 2007
Sometimes they go under the trees nearby and I wonder where the wounded one is... until I see that she is laying down resting in the middle of their group. They surround her and just hang out. Sometimes 3 of them leave to go forage, but the one male that is her partner ALWAYS stays with her.
He chases the chickens away and stands guard while she eats and drinks. He does not try to eat or drink anything himself. He just keeps watch and can hold off a surprisingly LARGE number of chickens!
We got our huge list nearly done in two days instead of four, thanks to Mooky and Erinn! They have worked so hard. Today we plan to butcher more chickens, and continue work on creating some kind of gluten free gingerbread that doesn't fall to pieces then you work with it. Mooky made some yesterday that tasted great, but wasn't sturdy enough.
A couple days ago, a 6 point buck came up near the house when I was shaking a can of corn for the goats. Surprised me! I actually went and got the gun since we really need more deer meat, and I had every opportunity to shoot him because he came within 40 feet of me several times. However, that is NOT normal wild deer behaviour and all I could of was that it was someone's pet deer and I couldn't shoot him. He had to be half tame to come up when he heard the corn in the bucket.... I was telling Kris all about it and he agreed that that was really weird and he wouldn't have shot him either. I have not actually ever shot a deer! And I don't really want to, but we do need the meat, and it would have been a perfect opportunity. We just don't see very many deer on our land because they avoid the goats. We see them all around though!
Thursday, December 20, 2007
Wednesday, December 19, 2007
Yesterday we got most of our grocery shopping done, but of course I had to forget something... The pie ingredients. Grrrr. The kids will probably make a couple pumpkin pies, an apple pie, and a lemon meringue. So, all I really need is some pumpkin and I could get that tonight in Harper when I take the kids to their 4-H meeting.
Aileas has been looking kind of thin to me, although it is really hard to tell with all that long hair. I bought some wormer pellets at TSC yesterday and she gobbled them up happily. I am making sure that she gets plenty of hay now that there isn't so much grass. She also eats cattle pellets, and all the milk she can snitch! So, I feel sure she is getting enough to eat, and hopefully the wormer will do the trick. Both cows were together for the past several days, so last night I locked The Crazy One in the barn with the goats. I latched the gate in such a way that she couldn't get out, Aileas couldn't get in, and the goats could freely go back and forth.
We have a HUGE list of things to get done today through Saturday in order to be prepared for guests on Sunday so I won't be online much.
A spinning wheel I thought Mum might like to see.
Monday, December 17, 2007
the day rush at you like wild animals.
morning consists of shoving it all back;
stronger, quieter life come flowing in." C.S. Lewis
"Even on days when every cinder in our soul feels cold,
With all the butchering of chickens and fingers last week, as well as getting ready for the show, we didn't get a lot of book work done. However, they were learning! More butchering practice. Dealing with bloat in a goat. Cooking meals. Kitchen upkeep while I spent extra time working outside. Laundry practice. :o) See, all those skills will come in handy one day! Like, today. :o)
- Today we have to take Glitter back home and mail a bunch of calendars.
- Tomorrow we have to go to town for groceries and gingerbread house supplies. I just realized the kids have NEVER gotten to make a gingerbread house because of us not wanting them to eat much candy or sugar in any form! So, now when we decide to do it, it has to be gluten free! WOW! That is going to be hard... but they are very excited!
- Wednesday we have a 4-H meeting, and the rest of the week we get to stay home! For us, this is an UNUSUALLY busy week!
Sunday, December 16, 2007
We went to Bandera yesterday for our fourth Hill Country Goat Classic. Each year there have been fewer and fewer dairy goats entered. The ladies doing the entry forms told me that dairy goats used to make up the majority of the show. But, yesterday, we had the ONLY dairy goats there.
Erinn entered 3 goats, one in each of the appropriate age groups, so she could show one in each class. But, since no one else brought dairy goats, they put all three of her goats in one class, which meant we had to recruit helpers to show them. She IS talented and all, but it's rather hard to lead three goats around at once. Dana got first place, Glitter got second, and Velvet got third.
After that class, it was time for her to show Mooky's Boer goat (#1), so I had the goat waiting for her when she came out of the ring and we switched goats. Kris took the other two goats from the two girls who helped us. Mooky's finger is only hurting if he bumps it on something, but since you have to switch sides fairly often when you are showing a goat, he could not show #1. The judge started pulling goats out, the worst first, and having them line up on one side of the ring. Erinn's goat did not get picked first, or second, and I was very relieved! Out of thirteen goats, she ended up being 6th place. YAY!! A nice change from last place. :o) She was sad that she couldn't show Hershey, but we just couldn't risk it with her still not feeling 100%.
Quite a few people commented to us about our goats, and asked lots of "dairy goat questions" and seemed quite interested. Dana's udder was very full, so that got a lot of comments, with her being the ONLY goat in the entire show to have milk!
The cold front hit before we left home yesterday. Then, we got to Bandera BEFORE the cold front. It was almost warm there, and right before we left the cold front caught up with us. When we got home, the lean-to gate had blown open and all the animals were pigging out on hay. There were 6 bales in there that wouldn't fit in the barn loft. With goats, they just eat the hay, and probably jump all over it too. BUT, both cows AND the horse were in there which meant that the bales were no longer neatly stacked. They pulled them down and scattered them around, which made it easier for the goats to jump on EACH AND EVERY bale and probably poop on each one too. Thanks a lot.
The kids unloaded the truck and Mooky vacuumed it out while Kris gathered kindling and took firewood in the house. I spent the next hour feeding and watering chickens, giving old hay to the pig for warmth, gathering eggs, and getting everything ready for the cold night ahead.