Shades of Ireland

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Weather Relapse

I swear that I am losing my menopausal, hormone deprived mind! I just can't take the cold any more..... I am about to just snap!! It has been absolutely lovely weather even with a little rain thrown in.... until late yesterday.  A typical spring storm blew through but the temperature dropped down to down right chilly and so did my attitude. I did manage to brave the brisk north wind and get a few chores done but definitely with out any enthusiasm.  It may be best for me to just wind things up early this evening, turn on my beloved heated matress pad, and hibernate......

Yesterday, Adam and I got a thrid strand of electric fence up around what used to be called the "horse pasture". We had gotten a small "training lane" set up a few days before. It is just a small area with good grazing that is very well fenced with electric wire. We are using this area to train the goats and weaned calves to respect an electric fence. Not an easy feat with goats, let me tell you! 

After spending two days in the training lane and getting the old horse pasture fixed, I turned the whole goat herd out to graze. This area is pretty darn big. I am a terrible judge of land area but I would guess between seven and ten acres and full of wild rose bushes. The girls had a marvelous time! They all stayed in and waddled back to the barn as full as ticks......

Next on the agenda is to put the weaned calves and three replacement heifers into the training pen. While they are hanging out in there discovering the zapping power of those thin little wires, we will be getting the late planted wheat set up to rotational graze. We have no intention of ever harvesting it so they will get to graze it all until the heat kills it or we sell the steers and the heifers get big enough to go out with the bull--- which ever comes first.

It is supposed to drop down below freezing tonight...... I just can't stand it. The urge to just go to bed is more than I can withstand. I am going down for a nap...... an then I will get up and cover my lettuce and strawberries...... one more time.....

Saturday, April 13, 2013


Nothing like waiting until almost the very last minute! We did get them done today as well as a little gardening.

I am still recovering from the ear/sinus stuff but as long as I pace myself, I manage to do pretty well. Over all, doing much better.

The bad news is that I finally completely filled up the memory card for my little camera. To get a new one, I will have to force myself to leave the farm and travel a whopping 11 miles to the small department store. Since we are one vehicle short, unless I want to walk, it will probably be a few days before I can take or post any new pictures. 

I think that this may be a good time to sort through some old pictures........ Maybe tomorrow!!

Thursday, April 11, 2013

One of Those Moments.....

As I sit here at lunch tapping away at this blog, I realize that I have had one of THOSE defining moments today......

The day started out just fine with nothing unusual for our house other than they called Charlie in to work for a few hours this morning. We are short one vehicle these days so sometimes I have been literally "stuck" here on the farm until Seth gets home at lunch. Since Charlie was going to work on his day off, this was going to be one of those days.

I rousted Adam out of bed and headed over to get the milking shores started. Currently, I am feeding corn silage to most of the livestock-- except the horses. For any of you that don't know, corn silage is corn that is harvested (usually before it is mature) stalk, leaves, corn and all. It is chopped up and all put into a container or a "pit" and packed down to press out all of the air. It is covered tightly and allowed to ferment. Ruminants like cows, sheep and goats absolutely LOVE it and it is very nutritious for them. It also has a very strong sweet/sour fermented odor....... Anyway, I have some stored in barrels that I have gotten from a friend's pit.  The barrel that I am feeding out of right now is about half full and I have to lean waaaaay over in there to get my feed bucket full.

As I came up out of the barrel with my very smelly silage, something very strange happened to me. I nearly fainted. The pressure in my head made me feel as if my eyes were literally going to pop out of my head and the whole barn spun crazily out of control....... the worst part was that these crazy feelings did not pass..... the sensations were so overwhelming that I thought that I was having a stroke. I stood there trying to get control and it occurred to me that I was alone in this barn..... Adam may or may not be coming over soon because he might have rolled back over to sleep more....... I wasn't afraid.... but at the same time, I was terrified that Adam would find me hanging over in a barrel of silage...

Things got much worse and I considered calling an ambulance...... those of you that know me realize by now that I sincerely thought I was going to die--- because that is the only way I would EVER call an ambulance.
I just stood there gripping the barrel and taking long slow breaths until I began to think that I MIGHT just live through this and began to ease my way back to the house. By the time I made it to the house, I was feeling better and Adam was up and putting on his boots. His first words were, " WHAT is wrong???".  As I turned to shut the door, it all happened again. I called Neil and tearfully told him that someone needed to come home----- again very unlike me and enough to cause him to be very concerned. He immediately dispatched Seth for home and started making arrangements to get himself home.

After a few more spells, I began to realize the problem had to do with when I changed positions rapidly..... probably not a stroke. Living in a small town has many advantages and one of them is that the folks at the Doctor's office know you by first name and will shuffle you right in to see the physician's assistant---- who I absolutely adore! Turns out, both of my ears as well as all of sinus cavities are infected. Neil and I sat at the local diner and had coffee while we waited for the pharmacy to fill my antibiotic prescription.

I am going to be fine but for just a moment....... I didn't think that I was. The panic for me was that I was alone and if something did happen to me, Adam would be the one to find me. I guess that what ever hat I wear, I will always be "Mama" first....... 

Monday, April 8, 2013

Accidental Sheep Ranchers

Over the last month or so, we have taken in several ewes and their lambs along with few weaned or orphaned lambs. Originally we had Catherine and Elizabeth-- both very spoiled and pampered. Now, we have 19 sheep of various sizes, shapes and sexes.

The ewes and lambs are well enough now to venture out of the barn paddocks and join the big girls out in the pasture. I went out to check on them and was delighted to catch this picture.

                                                                  Are you my mother?

Flirting With Spring.....

It is still only early April here in blustery south east Kansas but we are having some wonderful teasing glimpses of spring time. The past 4-5 days have been very warm and breezy with a few rain showers thrown in. The storms of spring have already started with a small town north of us getting marble sized hail while we barely had a sprinkle of rain.

We have not lit a fire in the fireplace in about 5 days and the furnace hasn't kicked on in longer than that. It is supposed to drop back down into the thirties later this week and the weather forecasters have been warning us for the last two days that BIG storms are coming..... expecting rough weather beginning Tuesday afternoon. All part of life here.......

As you can imagine, all this good weather has stirred up my gardener soul! I am truly trying to restrain myself but even after nearly 15 years of trying to plant too early in the Midwest and having countless tender plants frosted out...... I still can't help myself and do it anyway.

I am just passing through here today and hopefully will get back soon with updated pictures. We have been wonderfully productive and blessed since I last posted. I am looking for just the right picture to replace the wintry scene in the header...... maybe something with the much appreciated MUD!