All posts filed under: Farm Life

Learning to plow…

I think of plowing as the quintessential activity of a real farm.  In fact, I hestitate to call my place a real farm because of the lack of said, plowing.  I’m fond of the ‘lasagna’ method of growing crops…layering compost and straw and cardboard.  I’ve run a rototiller a few times, but its just not my thing.  So recently, when I had the opportunity to learn to plow….for real…I hopped on board, quite literally. Some of you may know that I have agreed to sell Peanut to a nice couple in Vermont who plan to farm with him.  He is on trial with them as I write this….staying at Ted’s place, where they are learning the ins and outs of driving a work horse.  I brought Peanut up last week.  Ted and I had hatched a plan (well, mostly I did) that we should put Peanut and Clayton together to plow at the GMDHA fall meeting.  Ted wanted Peanut there a few days early to practice. So Thursday morning, I help Ted harness up the …

Roosters

I’ve known a few roosters in my day. Some are calm and gentile with the ladies, others are just outright ‘peckers’ and are abusive. The dominant, out going rooster has its benefits in regard to predator control, but they can get out of hand with kids and visitors. We had such rooster in our midst. Fooled by his youth and good looks, we tolerated his bizarre aggressive behavior UNTIL he stabbed my poor mother in the leg. Being on coumadin (a blood thinner), this was unacceptable. 2 days ago he attacked my two nieces and a nephew…scaring the crap out of them. Mom and I both agreed a rooster stew was on the menu! My bother, Bear and his family were here. He had brought his rifle, as I was wanting a certain fox eliminated. Once our new objective was clarified, the shooting began. I shooed the rooster out into the open and the firing squad began. Near misses all afternoon. I believe Bear was suffering from severe embarrassment…must be something wrong with the scope. …

Pigs and Horses…

This post was lost in my edit file from April.  Made me smile remembering that day.  The horses and pigs are surprisingly tolerant, even curious towards each other nowadays. April 2009 I brought home my first pair of piglets last night, Spam and Hamlet. I decided to put them in the barn because of the weather (freezing rain here) to settle in for a few days. While I got the stall across the aisle from the horses stalls ready for them, I left them squealing in the back of my truck. The horses, having never seen a pig, decided to vacate the premises and ran off to the far end of their winter paddock. Ever curious, they carefully crept back to the barn area just in time for me to haul the first squealing pig to its new home in the barn…pandamonium set in and off they went again to the far end, nearing tripping over each other in their hasty getaway. Well, I waited for them to creep back close (they were afterall hungry …

Insights from a Manure Slinger…

Some of my friends suspect I am alittle obsessive-complusive about manure. Whats true is that I enjoy manure management….and I find I occasionally have my best epiphanies while mucking stalls and the like. This, occured to me this morning while chipping piles from the snow….6am…..21 below zero…. “When approaching a problem, sometimes going at it at a slightly different angle is all you need to find the solution”

Happy Holidays 2008!

Happy Holidays, Everyone! 2008 has been a very exciting year…with both highs and lows! We’ve added to the farm in many ways and have cut back in other ways! During the winter, I finally got the family on board for some horsey activities, namely skijoring! Bear, Marina and Evan (supported wholeheartedly by freezing mom, Michelle and Vera on the side lines) competed behind Manny and me in two divisions. Bear and I took second at the Newport Winter Carnival…a product of smart strategy and great skiing! Videos are on my blog (see below). 2008 was the best winter in memory for me, full of snow! We had over 100 inches last winter…truly beautiful! In the spring, we had a blessed lack of mud, thanks to the heavy snow and thin frost underneath. We started our spring renovations…a farmer’s porch for the horses on the barn and a composting shed….a place to make manure a renewable resource! With rising diesel prices, I parked the big truck and limited my distant horsey activities to a minimum. I …

The Passing of a Great Dog…

Dax was an Australian Cattle Dog I rescued in Colorado, more years ago than I can remember. Meant to be my husbands companion, she became mine when he left us. We’ve had a pretty remarkable relationship ever since. She was a sensitive type of dog, right from the beginning. I learned quickly, that you didn’t need to yell at Dax to make your point. She knew every word of english I do, I swear. All you had to do was frown abit and she would know you were unhappy with her and she would hang her head in shame. Loyal to a fault, she never needed a leash or collar. She could be trusted to stay in the yard, even when unattended for hours. I had as much control over her at liberty as anyone had with their dogs on a lead. She was the best dog I ever knew The vets have been telling me to expect the worst for the past 7 years on and off. First was the diagnosis of a ‘fatal’ …