Thursday, June 9, 2011

Why We Won't Turn on the Hose Today

Yesterday was hot. Well, as hot as things get in June in our part of the world, certainly not as hot as things get in other parts, but hot as we define it here. Anyway, I thought I'd get the outside work done early, and then maybe do something fun and water-y with the kids. So we headed out to the garden to finish removing the rocks that grew over the winter. The middles brought their summer school books (Math and Reading), we packed up water and headed down to the garden. We brought the goats, too. They like to graze in the field while we work down there. The kids all hang out in the shade house while I get some gardening done.
Emma thought the goats should be allowed in the shade house, too.
So while I worked on raking and pulling weeds and throwing rocks, the goats grazed nearby.

Why do I put up a gate?
Sometimes they were a lot nearer than I wanted, but they did help with the weeding.   Emma thought she'd take them for a walk, Talking with them the whole way.

Emma, Goat Whisperer

Sophie kept a close watch on everything.

Sadly, we were only down there for about an hour and a half before the heat made me realized that the garden, which has already waited this long, could wait a couple more days. Cooler weather is on the way.  Even Abby was glad when we decided to head back to the house to take a break.

And that was our morning. So in the afternoon I thought I'd let the kids have some fun and turn on the hose and I'd take a break for the afternoon. I took Emma and Sophie out to play with Zach and Maddie in the water, and I realized that, well, since the water was on anyway, I should scrub the 5 area rugs that have been sitting outside for far too long waiting for me to stop being so lazy have time to scrub them down before storing them until next winter.

When I was done with the rugs, since the water was on anyway, I thought I'd water the strawberries I recently planted.  While I was watering the strawberries, I realized that the grapes needed to be weeded. So I did that. When I was done weeding the grapes, I looked over at the blueberries and realized that they needed some weeding as well. So I did that. And the kids had fun playing in the water. And that was my afternoon break. So we won't turn on the hose today, because I'm too tired to take a break.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

The Turkey Ark

 I wanted to show you the shelter my amazing husband built for the turkeys.

He mostly used materials he had on hand, because we're really tired of spending more on animal housing than we do on maintaining our own, so "cheap" was the operative word. He screened the sides with 1" poultry wire, built roosts for the turkeys, put in two doors - one for the turkeys to get in and out and one for us to access their food and water. It's gorgeous! When he finished building it, we thought it looked ark-like, hence the name - the Turkey Ark.  We The Builder and the middles dragged it out to the field, came back for the turkeys and put them in their new home, safe and secure. That was Saturday.

Perhaps we should have called it the Turkey Titanic. Because sometime between Monday night and Tuesday morning a weasel found our Ark. Unfortunately, the weasel also found our turkeys. When I went to check on them Tuesday morning we were down by two. So The Builder stopped by the hardware store for reinforcements. (So much for keeping it cheap!) He picked up hardware cloth to reinforce the sides and the bottom of the Ark and ended up spending the whole evening working on it with Josh's assistance. He basically ended up re-framing the whole thing, placing the hardware cloth (which is supposed to be weasel proof) over top of the poultry wire, then lifting the whole thing and covering the bottom as well. The hardware cloth wasn't large enough to reach all the way around the bottom, so he overlapped it and anchored it in place with some pretty large rocks until he can "stitch" the opening closed. 

I think the remodel was successful, because this morning all 9 turkeys were still there, alive and well. While I did some work in the garden I let them out to free-range. They were hesitant at first (do you blame them?), but they seemed to enjoy the freedom.

Saturday, June 4, 2011

This Week

So much happening, it must be posted in bullets, or it will never be posted.

  • Transcript for 4 years of high school compiled for Josh to graduate.
    • This was a tough one because most of our records were online, and we've had multiple computer and printer problems this year. 
    • This required digging through boxes in the cellar to find school work from 9th and 10th grades.
    • This also required some serious crunch time on Josh's part, which resulted in serious crunch time for grading the work on my part.
    • We're done. He graduates tomorrow!
  • The Builder made a shelter for the 11 turkeys that have been living in our garage for a month. The Turkey Ark was finished today, and the turkeys were relocated to their new home.
  • The 20 21 23 22 many chickens that have been living in the garage for a month have been moved to the coop, affectionately referred to as the Taj-Ma-coop. We'll see how they do.
  • The 9 ducks that have been living in our garage for a month have been relocated to temporary quarters until permanent shelter is built found.
  • We went to our last day at the middles' homeschool co-op. Lots of fun was had by all. We ended the day with very tired middles and littles, and a Mama who is grateful for time off for the summer but is wondering what she'll do without weekly sanity checks.
  • We ALL (even Josh and The Builder) went on a field trip to Children's Day at a small living history museum. It was a wonderful way to end the official school year.
  • The garden was planted prepared for planting. We're a little behind, but it seems that rocks grew very well over the winter and they needed to be removed. We got half of it done. We're a little late for planting here, but we're still going to put everything in and see what comes up. Because you never know.
  • Zach learned how to drive the tractor and tilled half of our field for planting. He's walking much taller now, with a little man-swagger.
  • Zach and Maddie each got to back a vehicle down the driveway to clear the way to clean out the garage. They both have a little bit of man-swagger.
  • The 100 strawberry plants I planted last week are doing very well, even though some of our chickens think the new strawberry bed is a custom built dust-bath just for them. I still need to mulch them. Maybe next week.
  • Bingley the baby boy goat is a little "less" boy. We had him neutered (which is a much better alternative than the meat market). I was amazed at how fast and easy the process was. Much better than disbudding.
  • Maddie finished up all her reading books for the year and is looking for more. 
  • Maddie and Zach finished science for the year.
  • I'm looking forward to our first summer "off" in several years. Other than some reading and math (which are year-round subjects), we're done with school!
Sorry, no pictures. With all those things going on, did you really expect me to take and download pictures? Impossible!


Related Posts with Thumbnails