Friday Farm Daze

After surviving another busy week….

Even Dugur is tired ;0)
…even Dugur is tired.   ;0)

~*~

...there are still quiet moments.
…there are still quiet moments.

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...lambs are still growning.
…lambs are still growing.

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...we've been eating plenty of these in home-made ice cream. YUM!
…we’ve been eating plenty of these in home-made ice cream. YUM!

 

...lil Buckie made his entrance.
…lil Buckie made his entrance.

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...we found beauty in lettuce.
…we found beauty in lettuce.

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...Junior also made his presence known.
…Junior also made his presence known.

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...we had moments to "stop and smell the roses".
…we had moments to “stop and smell the roses”.

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...we had some escapies.
…we had some escapees.

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...we have more fruit forming.
…we have more fruit forming.

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...we received more rain!
…we received an additional 5/10th’s of rain for a total of 1.2 inches!

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...we have been guided.
…we have been guided.

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...we are blessed beyond a doubt.
…we are blessed beyond a doubt.

Just kidding ;0)

Last night we had another beautiful sunset followed by a pretty good thunderstorm and rain in the middle of the night.

Last nights sunset...
Last nights sunset…

This morning as Maddie walked by one of the calf sheds she spotted something very special…

What's all the hubbub about?
What’s all the hubbub about?

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A brand new baby Pygmy Goat...
A brand new baby Pygmy Goat…

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Twins...
Goatie’s twin kids …
Little Goatie had her self some very cute little billy goats.  The boys are both disappointed that both babies are boys and won’t be able to keep either of them.  Garrett is especially sad as his goat had died earlier this year and Hayden told him he could have one of his babies if it was a girl.
goatie baby
Goatie is being such a good mommy, she dried them both off and will make the funniest little noise when either of them think they are in distress.   She was so intent on cleaning them up that she wasn’t holding still very well to let them nurse though.  So we threw in some grass hay, which helped her to concentrate her attention else where while the babies snuck in and drank those important first drinks of colostrum.
Trying to stand up...

Trying to stand up...

~*~
Being a good nannie...

Being a good nanny...

While paying so much attention to Goatie and her new babies the fence was forgotten about and the sheep ended up roaming free to both ends of the property…what a day so far!  Seriously!!!

This and That…

Toby the goaty playing king of the hill...

Toby the goaty playing king of the hill...

Araucana cross rooster struttin' his stuff...

Araucana X Barred Rock rooster struttin' his stuff...

 

Gray badgerface Icelandic Sheep grazing at dusk...

Gray badgerface Icelandic ewe grazing at dusk...

 

Dugur dog hangin' out...

Dugur dog hangin' out...

 

Winter wheat coming up in the pasture...

Winter wheat coming up in the pasture...

 

Icelandic Lamb being to cute...

Icelandic Lamb being too cute...

Zayne being cuter!

Zayne being cuter!

Life and Death on a Small Farm…

Living life with animals, a person will get to experience many of life’s events.  This week we have seen a full cycle of these events, when on Monday while doing a sheep check we found a very sick goat that later died despite our best efforts to revive her.  This made for a somber household and a broken hearted little boy missing his pet.

Compounding things, we all are down with very bad chest colds that just won’t go away.  This has left three little boys on antibiotics to help speed their recovery.  And while everyone seems to be slowly overcoming their illnesses, poor Zayne though,  has not.  He has been running a 101-102 degree fever and was unable to keep his medicine down last night and was up all night coughing and crying.  So he went back to the doctor today where they gave him an antibiotic shot and sent stuff home to do treatments on the nebulizer. So with me getting no sleep last night, Mark did his ususally check on the sheep before he left for work and mentioned that one had a little goop coming out of her.  I told him that she’s had goop coming out of her all week but I would go back up and check her in a little while.  In the meantime Zayne finally fell asleep and so must I cause it 10:30 when I opened my eyes next.

  Now I wasn’t overly worried about this ewe because for the last 2 weeks she has looked like she was about to lamb and has had a little goop coming out of her.  When I finally got up to the barn the sheep where singing up a chorus, telling me how starved they were and how dare I be so late!  Then when I rounded the corner to her pen the first thing I saw was the sheep in question with a head and one leg sticking out of her!  I don’t know how long she had been in labor, but the poor little baby was very limp and very stuck but mom ewe was up and chewing some straw,  I knew that this was not good.  I yelled at Sawyer, who was getting grain for his steer and caught mom and started working on getting baby out.  I tried wiggling baby forward but it was really wedged in there and there was no way it was going to go back in so I could to try and re-align things.  So while thinking about what I should do, I decided to check on baby and stuck my finger in its mouth to see…I’m not sure what made me do that cause I just knew it was dead.  Maybe I read it somewhere or maybe I seen Mark do it, but  it started to suck my finger!  Talk about motivation, knowing it was still alive really puts hope back in a person!  By this time Sawyer was up at the barn and he helped hold the ewe in one place while I pulled on the one leg.  While I pulled on it, I slowly unfurled it’s whole leg, I felt inside her and could not feel the other one. There was not a lot of room inside the ewe so I made the excecutive decision to just get baby out.  Sawyer asked what he could do so I told him if he thought he could, he could try to pull baby out.  So he did just that and made it look so easy, he firmly grabbed the lamb and gently wiggled/pulled it the rest of the way out.  (I’m so proud of Sawyer for stepping up and jumping in where he was needed!  We have been watching the James Harriot movies on Netflix at night before doing our 1:30 a.m. check, they are such great shows and I think  inspired him somewhat!)

After such an abrupt birth, the baby was not too sure it wanted to breathe.  There was a bunch of meconium (baby’s first poo) that followed the baby out in the amniotic fluid, indicating the poor lamb was in distress.  After some brisk rubbing and a couple of quick swings, fluid came out of it’s mouth and it started to sputter to life!  This ewe is a first winter ewe, so she is a first time mother and after being so hands on with her and her little one I was afraid she might freak and run, but after I placed the lamb in front of her she started to lick and talk to it.

Moments after birth, getting to know each other...

Moments after birth, getting to know each other...

There are so many aspects of Icelandic sheep that I love, but one of the major things is how vigorous and hardy the lambs are.  Even after such a rough start with in minutes of birth it was trying to get up and test  it’s legs out  and was up wondering around the pen trying to find something to eat.  So I shortened up the pen she was in with part of a cattle panel, put fresh straw in, and Sawyer ran back to the house to get some warm water with molasses in it  for mom to drink.  After putting some of our best hay in, we stood back and made sure the baby drank those first important drinks of colostrum.  It took it a little while before mom stopped licking it and would hold still long enough for it to get a hold, that’s where the hay and molasses water comes in handy.  As mom busies herself eating and drinking, baby is able to get in a get a good drink.
Moments later up and nursing....

Taking those first important drinks of colostrum...

After things had settled down and mom and baby had bonded well, we clipped the umbilical cord and dipped it in iodine to prevent infection where I was able to get a close enough look to confirm that baby was a little girl!  She weighed 8 lbs 1 oz., not to bad for a first winter ewe!  We then quickly returned her to her mother and stepped back and admired her.  The other pretty cool thing about Icelandics is their coloring, however sometimes trying to figure out just what they’re expressing can prove (to me) to be a bit difficult!  She is a black  badgerface with phaeomelanin(red pigment on her body) that will fade as she gets older, mom is a badgerface and dad is a black spotted.  She maybe co-expressing the grey pattern too because of the white around her mouth area.
A Black Spotted? Badgerface Ewe Lamb...

An Icelandic black badgerface ewe lamb...

She has been quite fun to watch today and the kids (and especially me) are very excited that lambing has finally started, and started off on the right foot!  It has also brought a more upbeat mood to the household as we have witnessed two of life’s certainties.
Egg Count:

Egg Count:

8 eggs

Week three of the stomach flu…

Well the good news is there doesn’t look to be a week three!  I think it is definitely safe to say that the girls and I will not get it as it’s been a week since some one (other than Teigen) has thrown up!  I feel like Abe below, giving raspberries to whole situation… hehe.  I think Teigen is feeling a lot better too, he’s back to his feisty little self.  No naps, no snuggling,  just go-go-go.  It’s good to be back to normal…what ever that is?

 

 

Abe

 

Egg Count:

Egg Count:

4 eggs

Weekend…

This last weekend we ended up getting some chores done even though we all felt a bit crummy.  Right now we have sooo much ice, it is really starting to effect the sheep.  We have had three different sheep with ice impacted into their hooves making them limp.   We ended up putting two of them into a pen next to the goats in the barn where it is dry.  Hopefully this will  help get them on the mend.  The goats however were not to sure about the sheep being next to them, apparently the goats had already claimed that territory (and everywhere else in the barn) and were acting quit aggressive toward the sheep.  So for the time being we have secured them in their own pen, which was quite a job!  They really are the little escape artists!  After three unsuccessful attempts at keeping them contained we have finally put up enough cattle panels to keep them in and off the hay stack and out of the injured sheep pen.

The goatys' secure in their pen...

The goatys' secure in their pen...

We also moved the ram back to his pen as his job is done for the year, we are a little late seperating the genders but it was easier keeping the bigger waterers unfrozen with the weather like it was.  Now that it is warming up a bit it’s not such a big deal.  We also had to doctor him, he had some hay stuck in his eye but it is looking much better after a couple of flushings with salt water.  We also moved more hay up to the barn and Mark chopped a bunch more firewood for this week. 
It was such a nice weekend, blue sky, blue sky, blue sky…it was just nice to be out, a person could really get spring fever!  The kids did a bunch of sledding and snowboarding and had fun playing on a big round bale that we got.
The kids playing on the hay bale...

The kids playing on the hay bale...

We had another pretty sunset this weekend, in this picture the moon is hangin’ out too…
Sunset with the moon...

Sunset with the moon...

Egg Count:

3

See What’s New!

“I think one of us had a moment of weakness.  I am not sure if it was my wife or me?” my husband explains with a grin.  You see he received a phone call at work from a certain 7 year old wondering if he could have something.  The story goes something like this…we had called a number from the local Mountain Trader on a pair of free Shetland sheep, which were already taken, but they had three other critters that they were trying to get rid of.  Garrett and Hayden have been scouring the weekly ads to find one in their price range and so they were extremely excited when they could possibly get 3 for zero dollars!  So what is a dad to do, especially on a deal like that?   You must certainly tell your son, “What does your mother think about this?”   err “Sure, that sounds like a great idea!”  So Friday, after work and in the middle of preparing for the food fair, 3 little boys went to go pick up their newest critters.  So with out any more  ado please meet the little creatures that now abode in our barn on top of the haystack….

Look who was greeting us this morning from the hay stack!

Look who was greeting us this morning from the hay stack!

 

This is Abe, our new pygmy buck.

This is Abe, our new pygmy buck.

 

This is Toby, Hayden's new pygmy goat.

This is Toby, Hayden's new pygmy goat.

 

Abe, Lady, and Toby...

The trio of goats: Abe, Lady, and Toby...

 

 Mark and I have decided we both must have had the moment of weakness, simultaneously, in order to agree upon such an ordeal!  😉

 

And one more picture of Dugur, just 'cause.

And a picture of Dugur, 'cause he is so cute!

 

Erin

Egg Count:

 

  

    1