We have been working outside in 15 minute spurts. We're pushing 118 for the heat readings out here. That is just INSANE. We got the last of the miscellaneous junk hauled from the barn and into the burn pile. We lit it last night, so a good deal of it is burned off and simple smoldering now, but my plan was to finish the whole thing. I just don't see that happening by the weekend :( The burn pile really needs to be maintained *all* the time, but we usually get it worked all summer, and burn it off later in the autumn...when snake chances as lower, and it's tolerable to be anywhere near the inferno.
But, we've now added more stuff prepping this area of the barn, and it was already getting weedy around there...looks like an abandoned pile out there. Looks junky. Very junky. See what laziness gets you? You find out you have a guest visiting and your relatively neat existence disappears because all you see is a pile of 'land fill' fodder. Ahhh, maintenance...that is the key to peaceful living. I'm not really a Zen kind of gal myself, but that just seems to make sense :)
We have been looking for our barn momma cat all day. No idea when she disappeared for sure, but she had 5 babies late yesterday, very very tiny in size compared to her usual, and one appears to have been born dead. She's a very friendly cat, but usually keeps to herself, especially with birthing. Still, this is not typical for her to just disappear like this and abandon her babies. They weren't even cleaned completely...very unlike her. I don't think the babies will make it with our efforts. They are just too young and were abandoned too soon, but we'll do what we can. They try to eat well.
Looks like we'll go hunting tonight. I haven't seen an egg in over 3 weeks. At first, I suspected the heat rise and all, but now I have reports of long-tailed 'those we do not speak of' furry things (and it sure ain't the cat that takes periodic naps on top of my nesting boxes!) running out of the coop. EEEWWW. I *hate* those things. I know they exist. I even know that we probably have plenty of them living the high life in and around my barn and loft...but I suppress that knowledge and choose to find my "happy place" with smiling squirrels and rabbits, pretty flowers...the whole 9 yards! I have to. If I didn't find that "happy place" I'd never EVER go near that barn. EVER. Not for my goats, not for my chickens, not even for my dogs. :::shudder::: I don't even want to think about it.
However -- I won't let them keep eating my eggs either. I had to buy eggs...16 layers or better out there and I had to BUY eggs. Not on this homestead, buddy. Nasty little thin-shelled pale eggs. Blech! But, as I'm not going to the barn...my dear, sweet, kick-butt sniper eldest daughter can don the camo, smudge her face and become one with the barn...and pop 'those we do not speak of' as they skulk about. I'm even thinking of offering a bounty...er, incentive...for dead bodies.
Then I guess we need to gut the coop and find out where they are coming in from now. We lined the entire room, floor, walls and ceiling, with wire. There shouldn't be an access :(
You know, there are those few days when I really debate the whole rural homestead concept. Snakes, ticks and a hundred other nasties, 'those we do not speak of' roaming freely....all I can say is it's a good thing I have comfortable a/c to snap me back to common sense!