Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Just keep farmin', just keep farmin, farmin', farmin'....

Can you dig it? We have almost more than half of the garden in!!! Woot! Who woulda thunk it? Yesterday Greg came home early and just jumped right into digging holes for tomatoes. I hoed up some holes for my melons, cukes and zukes and got those seeds in the ground. We put up cutesy poo little pink flags with the name of the breed of plant we hoped to see arrive from the little mounds and then I went to help with the tomato planting. I called over my shoulder to have Annie bring me the rest of the flags. She in turn called to Mikey to take them to me as she was watering some stuff we'd planted earlier in the week. I happened to glance out to see Mikey pulling the very last flag out of my newly planted mounds as the unused flags lay ignored and invisible in the middle of the garden. I actually screamed. LOL! Yeah, well, it's funny now and it will be funny later in the fall as we get watermelons from the hill marked zukes but at the time it was devastating. Poor Mikey was banned from yesterday's gardening activities.
The day got better though. We threw a little bone meal and epsom salts in the holes for tomatoes and I organized the planting by finding the varieties that needed to be placed together and showing the girls how to cover them gently with the soil. I made more flags with names like Kelloggs, Costuluto Genovese, Polish Linguisa and good ol' MOM's and placed them lovingly into each planting bed. I believe we got 76 tomatoes planted last night.
The lettuces, spinach, strawberries, carrots and asparagus went to ground last week. All that's left to plant for this year's harvest is the rest of the melons that I started earlier in the year, the pumpkins, corn, beans, beets and broccoli. I feel like we're actually on our way to gardening finally!
Today was the first day the baby horsies were allowed outside to play. The moms were very grateful for the opportunity to graze and the babies were happy to run around in big circles, bucking and kicking while the dog barked at them. Is there anything more beautiful than a week old foal running in the green, green grass? I don't think so. They tired out quickly and collapsed into tangles of legs on the ground where their patient mothers stood guard and grazed. If I were an artist I'd paint a picture of this scene and call it Perfect Contentment.
And speaking of Perfect Contentment, I'm off to do laundry!

Wednesday, May 6, 2009


Well, for all the worrry and wonder and some other "W" words, we had our babies. I checked both the mares Sunday night and Fiona was still FULL of milk but no waxing on the teats and while she was looser in the ligaments she still wasn't exactly lax yet. Dixie had no progress, still small but hard in the udders and not much change in the ligaments at all. My prediction was a few more days for Fiona and as much as another week or two for Dix. And I went to bed content that there was no need for worry that night.
Riss slammed into the room Monday morning trumpeting the announcement that Dixie had a baby! The look on her face made me wonder if she was trying to tell me that something was wrong but I jumped into some clothes and went out to the stable as quickly as I can. I was correct in my genetic prophecy that this baby would not be a black and white splashy, chrome covered, marvel. She's a tiny little red horse with some cute white splotches on her butt that will someday be a beautiful blanket. I see some white hairs around the ears, eyes, and nose that lead me to believe she'll gray out to a strawberry roan. Her name is Miz Scarlett and she's very curious and pretty in a delicate way. I'm very proud of Dixie and her mothering abilities as well. For a first-time Momma she did very well. The vet visited and said she may not have been quite ready to give birth (well duh) because she's very, very bruised and torn and for such a tiny baby that can only mean she was very afraid or not quite ready. Oh well, it's not like I was planning to breed ever, ever again anyway.
In the meantime Fiona started acting like she was in labor. Laying down, getting up, laying down some more, pacing, ...... but I really attributed much of this to being upset about someone else having a baby. She wasn't due for another 10 days afterall and still no waxing so what could happen? By evening she had settled down considerably and I figured we were okay.
Greg blasted into the room on Tuesday to tell me my horse had a baby. This time I didn't even bother with underwear. Threw on some pants and ran. My girl's baby is exactly what I expected. This little filly is HUGE, with a typical Frieisian head, feathers, black as night and just the suggestion of her mother's beautiful star. She's at least twice the size of Scarlett and you can tell she's destined for unimaginable greatness. Her name will be Fiona's Ebony Juno. Barn name will be Juno as I know she will be stately and majestic when she's grown. The vet came AGAIN and declared my baby to be healthy, amazingly large and astoundingly beautiful. Fiona has absolutely no bruising or tearing which is unbelievable considering the size of this baby.
So, it's been a crazy couple of days. I've not accomplished much of anything with all this excitement. There are ducks and turkeys and chickens hatching everywhere but I've been a wee bit occupied. Three of my new chickens are from my own birds. The little mutts are cuter than anything you can buy from a purebred dealer. The little call duck is a clone of a rubber duck and I have to admit I've never seen a cuter baby duck in my life.
I'm off to see if I can get something done today.

Saturday, May 2, 2009

National Nude Gardening Day

So what are you doing for National Nude Gardening Day? I wonder if that title should be in caps? It's about 38 degrees out and thinking about rain. I kept my nudeness in the shower. Yes, I know nudeness isn't a word. There must be some hearty souls out there braving the bugs, kneeling in the dirt and communing with nature and I applaud them even while I'm glad that they are far from here so I don't have to witness their appreciation of the Earth.
We're taking all the kids out to see a movie today. Sometimes I worry about my sanity. Perhaps Mom drank while she was pregnant with me thus rendering me incapable of using good judgment when I make plans like this. Greg and Deeday are going to see Fast and Furious. Deej is such a nut for cars, car chases, car crashes and spending time alone with daddy that I know he'll have the most fun of all of us today. Mikey and Anni and I are going to see Monsters vs Aliens. I like Pixar so life could be worse. Rissa and Winnie are going to be trusted to see a movie all alone, by themselves. They'll be seeing 17 again because they like the Efron kid. I think we'll be using some of my 300 dollars in plant money for this little outing which is fine. I'll probably take a valium before embarking on this little adventure.
We also have a lady coming out to see if she would like to buy Casey horse. She thinks ol' Case would make a wonderful addition to a horse program that she volunteers for with horses who work with disabled kids. I think so too and at least I don't have to worry about her having a forever home.
Speaking of horses, I checked both the girls last night. Fiona has udders that would make a Jersey cow jealous. I cannot conceive of any scenario that will allow her to remain pregnant for another 15 days with udders like that so expect word on a new baby sometime next week late I think. On the other hand that crazy Dixie chick scared me silly last night by flirting with Bram and showing obvious signs of being in heat!! I wondered about false pregnancies and possible abortions until I did a search and found that it's not entirely uncommon for mares to go into a false heat in the latter weeks of pregnancy. Okay, who knew? 'Course I think back on my own pregnancies and remember that same sort of ......oh well, we won't go there will we? Dixie hasn't really progressed with her udders getting any fuller or ligaments looser so now it would appear that Fiona will go first-don't count Dix out yet though. Remember that quite often first time mothers don't even get milk until after baby comes so we'll see. I can assure you the first thing I do every morning is check horses.
I made caramel rolls last night to make first thing this morning. For some reason the caramel rolls don't like it when I make them the night before and then bake them in the morning. They seem heavier, denser than they are when I just make them to eat for dessert. Think I'll get some bread flour and try that before I give up on making them ahead though. The bread flour always makes them nice and light.
We had our favorite chicken mushroom and rice soup last night. It was wonderful though I had to pick all the chicken out of mine. Needs cheese.
Some very nice woman offered to sell me her foal halters last night for the coming baby horses. Just like I hate to buy the kids new clothes when I know they're going to outgrow them in a minute or two, I just couldn't make myself pay 30 dollars for a foal halter that will fit the horse all of four minutes. So I'm very happy and look, a whole blog with no bitching for a change!