Monday, July 29, 2013

Something To Crow About

When I gathered the eggs this evening, I got a little too excited.  Miss Jade thought I was losing it.  Again....  I opened the egg door and she heard my, "Whoo hoo! Awesome!!".  I caught a sideways glance from her and I had to explain.

Today, we got the very first egg from this years Barred Rock pullets! Six months ago we brought home thirty five baby chicks and raised them in the garage until they were big enough to move out to the barn.  We fussed over them and were saddened when we lost one here and there.  Finally all that care and coddling is starting to pay off.  They're hens now, beautiful and proud. 
The egg on the left is from one of our Black Star hens.  The light blue one is from our Aracauna hen.  And the tiny little egg on the right was today's moment of joy!  Isn't it cute?  They will lay smaller eggs like this for a few weeks and gradually get to normal size.  Jade thinks it would take about fifteen of those pullet eggs to make an omelet!  I think she's right.  But soon we will be getting about thirty gorgeous, all natural eggs from our happy, pastured hens.  I don't think there is anything better!  So if you are looking for better eggs, come on out!  We'll have extra!

Until next time,

Friday, July 26, 2013

Girls, Pigs and Power Tools

This morning, Prairie Granny and I tackled the much needed project of building the pig watering fountain.  The little piggies have tripled in size since we got them.  That was just over a month ago!  But now the piggies were making a gigantic mess out of there water tub, several times a day.  Of course! That's whats pigs do!  But it had become impossible to make sure they had fresh, clean water to drink.  So we got to work.


The waterer is made of a 4 foot section of PVC pipe.  It's capped and then a special little spout is drilled into the bottom of the pipe.  It's really slick!  The piggies will suck the water out of the pipe like we would a sports bottle.

At first the drill bit wasn't working right.  It's a special kind of bit that drills and cuts a hole at the same time.  But something wasn't right.... So Prairie Granny went to the Co-Op over in town to see if we could buy a new one.  But silly us!  Hal, one of the wonderful guys that run the Co-Op, took a look at ours and quickly had it lined up correctly and we were good to go!  Thanks Hal!  Then it worked like a charm!  That's just one more reason why we love this place!

 The whole project only took a few minutes and ta-da!  It was ready to hang in the pig pen.

Jade and I also finished pig proofing the big paddock for the piggies.
We lined the fence with hog panels so they can't escape.  I think I have enough to do without chasing pigs all over the farm! But now the piggies have a nice big, green place to play and root.

 Have you ever seen such happy pigs?

Bye for now,

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Skills Old and New

It had been almost twenty years since I last picked up a fence stretcher.  Not since the days on the ranch with Uncle George.  The horse farms I made my living on a few years ago always had nice vinyl or welded fencing.  Not much need for barbed wire and fencing tools.  Days like today I am so grateful for the things people taught me along the road.

I had three sections of fence that all had broken and downed wires.  That is pretty much disaster waiting to happen when you have horses.  So as soon as I could I dragged Jade out to help me get it all repaired.  Today was a little bit cooler than the last few days.  So other than the attacking deer flies, mosquitoes and weeds sticking into our jeans, it was a pretty pleasant project.

I really enjoy teaching Jade how to do new things.  She's now pretty good at pounding in fence staples and fastening the clips.  But the best part of the project was when she accidentally yanked her nose ring out with the fencing tool!  She didn't hurt herself and it was a good laugh for both of us!

I will never claim to be any kind of expert.  But there sure is some satisfaction in being able to get things done.  I'm hoping to be able to pass on a "can do" attitude to my kids, just like my mom did for me.  I don't think there is anything that Prairie Granny can't do! 

Bye for now,

Monday, July 8, 2013

Holy Hail Storm!

This evening as we were getting ready to head out to do chores, my girls were calling me, "Hey Barb come take pictures of these clouds! They're so cool!"  There was a storm on the horizon. 

We headed out to the barn and quickly realized we had just enough time to get the calves into the barn before racing back to the house.  I did not want to be caught in the barn when I had a nice safe basement waiting for me!

We got back to the house just in time.  I'm thankful that a tornado didn't appear in the clouds.  But boy, did it hail!

This was some of the biggest hail I'd ever seen.  And there was a lot of it!

Now for the damage report:  Do you remember those beautiful tomatoes in the first picture?
Here they are now....
Fresh cole slaw anyone?  It's so fresh it still has roots!

 I lost everything in the garden.  Yes, I'm totally pouting!  Mom and I started many of the plants early this spring and have babied them for so long.  Now they are trashed.

The barn took a beating too.  All of the sky lights are completely broken out.  Prairie Granny is going to have to get up on that roof and replace them soon.  Because this girl does not do heights!
Here's a fun fact!  This tree used to have leaves on it!  Now.... not so much.
After it was all said and done, I did realize how much I have to be grateful for.  No one was hurt, the animals are all fine, the house seems to have avoided damage.  The good Lord even gave us a beautiful reminder....
Pony is at the end of the rainbow!  No wonder I call him "Black Gold"!

I leave you with just one more fun photo.... I don't think I have ever included so many photos in one post!
We were lucky enough to have both ends of the rainbow on our farm!