Three down, three to go.

Addie kidded yesterday afternoon.  I was very glad to have that done.  I didn’t feel like things were going all that well with her.  Wally had to help deliver the first kid because his head was bent backwards.  The second one came out without any issues.  She had two, big buck kids.  Not-so-good, I would have liked for her to have one (or two) does, but it is what it is.  Addie is going to be six this year and I am not sure she has ever raised babies on her own.  She’s not the best mother (nor is her daughter, Billie), but I think they are doing okay.

On Saturday, Wally and I brought one of the three dog runs that were set at the top of the driveway into the goat pasture and installed it behind the goat shelter.  Sometime this week or this weekend, we’ll get a cover over the run and that’s where we’ll put the goat kids at night.  I’ll start doing this next weekend.  I could probably put Billie and Angel’s babies up at start milking them in the morning earlier than that, but I think I’ll just wait until the weekend.

One more ewe lambed on Saturday: she had twin ewe lambs.  Rain and snow was forecast for today so Sunday afternoon I took the ATV and Gel up to the ElectroNet to move the sheep down to the poultry pasture where they’d have some shelter.  It would have gone without too many issues except that Liath slipped her collar and took off.  Liath will run along side the ATV on a long line and that’s what I tried to do with her, but her collar slipped.  I could hear the neighbor’s dogs barking and Liath took off towards them.  Great.  I had to leave the sheep and go after Liath.  Amazingly, Gel helped me catch her: he continually blocked and bit her whenever she tried to run away from me.  Eventually she gave up and let me catch her.

While the two livestock guard dogs know their names and are very happy to come to you when inside a fence, when they are outside a fence, they completely forget they have names.  Liath is particularly bad.  She has a scary energy about her when she’s running loose and given that she’s already tried to kill one of the neighbor’s dogs, she’s like a loaded gun with the safety off.  Once I finally caught her and got her collar secured, we headed back to the sheep.  All of them moved off Gel except for the ewe with the newest lambs.  She did not charge or challenge Gel outright, but she didn’t want to move.  Gel held his ground and she slowly moved with the rest of the sheep.  As we entered the field closest to the house, I saw Buster barreling down the hill bucking, twirling and bawling like a fool.  Before heading up to get the sheep, I took him out of the poultry pasture and put him out into the front field and hoped that he’d put his head down and stay where I left him.  Was he ever happy to be reunited with his sheep buddies; unfortunately for Buster, I didn’t want him mingling with the ewes and lambs for fear that he’d hurt them.  His hormones are kicking in big time and he’s becoming more and more difficult to be around.  I will be glad when he goes to the processor.

I managed to split Buster off from the sheep and got them through the gate only to run head-on into the horses who had been watching the proceedings with great interest.  There’s another creature full of himself: Merlin.  I shooed the horses away and finally we got the sheep up into the poultry pasture which is where they are now.  Liath is up in a dog run and Buster is still out in the front pasture.  I might try to use Split to bring the sheep back up to the ElectroNet this afternoon.  She desperately needs some work.  I may kick myself for using her; but I won’t know until I try and I really need to get her something to do.

Before I starting writing this post, I was sitting on the couch thinking to myself that I should get up and do something, but all I want to do right now is to go back to bed.  I am tired and I guess I have reason to be tired.  In addition to moving the dog run into the goat shelter on Saturday, we took the small ShelterLogic building out of the horse pasture and put that up near the house.  We organized a lot of the crap that had accumulated around the dog runs and got the ShelterLogic building set up so I could start feeding the cats in there.  Remember when I wrote that we were supposed to go several days without snow or rain.  Ha!  That was wishful thinking.  Because cold rain/snow was forecast for Monday, on Sunday morning I suggested to Wally that we get the frame for the horse shelter built and put a tarp over it so that they’d have somewhere dry to go.  Building projects always seem simple in concept, but once you get going on them, they are not simple or easy.  Heck, even just lugging the lumber is hard; holding it up in the air so Wally can nail or screw it; oh, and trying to move around the mud!  I hope we can get all this bloody building done in the next six months or so.  I’m sick to death of it.  At least the horses have a dry place to stand.  They may not be using it, but it is there if they want it.  The tarp we used is on its last legs, but it’s better than nothing.  We’ll get the tin on it this weekend; if the weather cooperates!

We still need to finish getting windows into my milk parlor!

Unemployment is driving me crazy.  I send resumes knowing that I won’t get a call.  To make matters worst, my car was repossessed a couple of weeks ago.  I knew the day I was laid off that I was going to have a hard time making that car payment.  I was seriously bottom-up in that loan.  I called the lender to ask for revised terms, but all they were willing to give me was a free month.  I was making payments, but not the full amount.  Around December I got an application for a work-out which I completed and sent in, but I didn’t hear any more from them.  Then two weeks ago, the tow truck arrived.  Luckily I was able to get my personal belongings out of the car.  I have mixed feelings about the situation.  It’s sort of a relief because I knew it was going to happen; but I liked the car a lot and wish that the bank would have been willing to work with me.  It wasn’t as if I wasn’t paying them at all because I was.

I was without a car for over a week before I found a seller willing to work with me.  I am now driving a 1998 Toyota pick-up with 177,000 miles on it.  The truck has been well cared for so hopefully it will continue to run well.  I like the truck a lot and I really needed a truck.  At least no one can take this vehicle away from me.  This serious of events has completely sealed the door to driving to Charlotte.  I would have liked to have had a truck a long time ago; I was using my car like a truck; but I didn’t want to drive 100 miles per day in a truck.  The car was better on gas and more comfortable to drive long distances.  Now I need to find a job, heck, just about any job, close to home.

You may recall that I almost sold my dairy goats and it was to get a new vehicle.  Luckily, I didn’t have to do that.  Things do seem to straighten out if you give them time to do so.

Things are just bad these days; but it isn’t all bad.  Both Wally and I are healthy; all of the animals seem to be healthy and well.  Wally still has a job, but his hours were cut and they’ve been laying off people.  Hopefully Wally will keep his job.  As best as I can tell, I have another six months of unemployment left.  I guess we can be thankful for that …

Until later …