Beyond Irritating

Journal is still down. I don’t blame my service provider, it is not their fault. They are doing the best they can to get it back up. There is progress. My web sites are all back up. Hopefully by the end of the day today, I can post again.

Yesterday Wally and I went and picked-up 70 bales of hay out of the field and then off-loaded it into the ShelterLogic building. It’s really nice hay, but they were heavy bales. My back and hands are aching from the work. Getting the hay out of the field reminded me of doing it as a child. I thought the goats might like the hay, but they were less-than-impressed. I know the sheep will like it.

Petunia the pig is doing great. She got out while we were putting the hay up. We let her run around until we were finished; then secured the fence so she couldn’t get out. She was not happy, but she has a job to do. We extended the summer garden out another 16 feet and when Petunia is through with the winter garden, I’ll move her down to the summer garden where she’ll stay until April. It was quite funny watching Gel and Fern try to herd her. Gel tried to use his presence to move her (ha!) and Fern went along with her with her mouth opening and closing like a guppy. The pig was completely unfazed by the dogs. She had her own agenda: like rooting through our recycle bin. Pigs are fascinating creatures.

Last night, Liath and Rose had a bark-a-thon. Lovely … I think it was the full moon.

As I write this, I have a pot of meatballs and cheesy (guess what kind of cheese) tomato sauce on the stove and am defrosting the big freezer. Wally is out mowing. We went to the farmer’s market to make contact with a man there who has about 200 sheep. We made arrangements to go out to his place in the near future to see his operation. He said we’d be able to work the dogs on his sheep (and cattle if we wanted to). That will be good experience for both dogs. I told him how we thought the ram we bought may not be breeding the ewes. He said that in the 20 plus years he’s been raising sheep, he’s seen a ram breed a ewe twice. Apparently they are very secretive about their sex lives. Hopefully our ram is doing his job. We’ll find out in February and March.

On the agenda tomorrow is moving the fence and making hay racks for the goats which will hopefully eliminate at least some of the waste. Goats waste more damned hay. The goal is to let them have their alfalfa hay while they are waiting to be milked and give them regular grass hay in the fenced-in area. I found that if they have hay while they are waiting, they are a bit calmer and less apt to chew on the wood or each other. It’s not like they are waiting any terribly long time to be milked. It takes me about 30 minutes to milk all six goats.

The venison scraps from the new processor were good, but I almost beat up a man who was there when I picked up the meat. When he found out I was feeding meat to sheepdogs, he told me that I was making a big mistake. That it was going to turn them into sheep killers and that I had better cook it first. I told him that I’ve been feeding raw meat to these dogs for five years now and that they have not once made an attempt to kill a sheep, or any other animal for that matter. He said that all they needed to do was to get the scent of afterbirth and they’d be killing off my sheep and lambs. Stupid, ignorant people. I figured beating this man up may interfere with getting venison scraps so I held my tongue.

Until later …