Did I really blog so little in May? Not that anyone missed my goofy, incoherent ramblings much I'm sure, but still...I'm not exactly the poster child for quiet and shy you know.
Over the last short time here, aside from having a great long weekend with Memorial Day and Dewey being home, life has been a bir off kilter around here. We had one of the baby goats (Kendra's twins) go down will illness unexpectedly. We nursed him 24/7 in the house here for near a week and alas, he passed. We aren't 100% sure at all what the issue was, just that he grew more and more listless and unable to actively nurse on his own. He was a twin birth, and the other twin seemed to be very active and well. They were about a month old when the weaker twin passed. Within 3 days, the stronger twin was found in the barn being pawed and bellowed at by momma who apparently didn't realize he too had passed in the night :-( I don't do this part of homesteading very well at all. Burials aside, we have been cautiously watching the health of the others in the herd. Those were the last babies of the season, and so far, both earlier babies, Rachel's Eve and Happy's Jeremiah, are well. They are also older, being about 6 months now. We are leaning toward the belief that perhaps the twins suffered from White Muscle Disease, or a goat version of MS. No way of knowing for sure, but the symptoms certainly bear that diagnosis out. We will certainly we will certainly begin treating for selenium deficiency as part of the goat regime here.
Two days ago, going to the barn for evening chores, we discovered Gideon, our year-old buckling from Kendra's triplet set last year lying in the barn, stiff and dead. There was not physical sign of trauma with him either, and that morning he was out and about the timber with everyone else, seemingly perfectly normal. Now I am a bit more concerned. It's one thing to lose young ones still nursing, but a year old going down without warning is something else. Happy New Year has been off her feed a couple days, just quietly lying about, disinterested in hay, branches and grain. They are all current on worming, there has been no changes of note in feed, browsing or water so again, I'm stumped o.O Now, we do have what they call "cow killer" or Red Velvet, ants down here...perhaps he simply got stung? I don't know. Perhaps a snake? We didn't see any visible marking showing signs of a bite or sting, but that's not to say it wasn't there.
Either way, I've had my fill of digging graves around here. Time for things to perk back up. So, to help spur that along, we went out this morning and bought 990' of field fencing again, several (but not near enough) T-posts, and replenished the fence staple supply. Jennifer, Matthew and I started hitting the back clearing and timber, marking out another 'browsing section' for goats, including the back clearing for Miss Judy and young Woody to enjoy as well. Of course, we don't plan for fencing during the winter months, when the bug and snake population are otherwise occupied. Shoot no....we dive right in as SUMMER STRIKES and the temnps start popping the mercury out the top of the thermometer. :::sigh::: we never were much for pre-planning around here. Today we got home and tackled a whopping 40' of fencing, complete with a wooden gate post set, and 4 T-posts. I'm not over-joyed with the amount of work done, but we did what we could prior to hitting the timber and underbrush. Now the real fun begins....tick land. Ugh...I can feel them crawling already!
Last week, as more storms jumped around the area, we lost power and I began to stress a bit around the 8th hour. Our 2 freezers are fairly packed (both a good thing and a bad thing). Our freezers are outside in the workshop building, so despite being inside more or less, they are exposed to a great deal of heat under normal circumstances, take out the power and we have a pretty hot environment. I bought several bags of ice and packed the chest and upright and kept a prayer handy. All in all, we were out some 15 hours, lost what was in the milk fridge as well as the few items in the other one, and it could have been alot worse. I know...I could have saved those gallons of milk and made yogurt. I didn't think along those lines, and I wasn't sure when the power would return. Next time. I'll be more prepared next time. Really, we don't keep alot in the fridge to begin with, so there's not much to lose really, but still...I did have too much in the freezers, something I try to avoid. Shouldn't have let them build up a store like that. Should have had them canned up in the pantry. Lesson learned.
On a recent shopping trip to replenish the TP, Abbey discovered the joys of Sam's Club and a 2.5 gallon container of giant dill pickles. We're talking her earthly version of heaven here. This is the daughter who asks for a gallong of dill pickles all her own every year for her birthday. She's lovin' this.
On the blog sharing front, I have been gathering goodies all over....
Strawberry Sheet Pie from Mennonite Girls Can Cook...just spend time with their site and archives. I promise delicious results!
Balancing Beauty and Bedlam...great recipes, among so many other things, including this Mexican Style Chicken OAMC
Mandy's Recipe Box shared some great doughnuts...I suggest simply adding her to your Reader or favorites listing because there are way more goodies you'll want to save and add to your recipes!
Just Plain Good Finds...
A dear online friend, Sara, has started sharing her homestead goodies like soaps and other things here at Fresh From The Homestead. Stop by and check her out, order some great homemade soap, and grab her Facebook link :-)
I Take Joy shared a great post on Dishes, Duties and Datebooks worth reading and pondering.
Dandelion Seeds shared a great Devotional for the Disorganized. A definite keeper and one to print out!
Sprouting Flowers has a great PDF Alphabet Printing Chart loaded up to share. Remember sitting in those grade school classrooms checking your handwriting against the row of alphabet cards that lined the area above the blackboard? Well, I do. This set however is much better...each letter is there with a coordinating Bible verse to memorize. Definitely printing this out to laminate and hang here!
And lastly, but perhaps the best little goodie I came across and tucked aside, Plain Pam's Blog. I've shared many of her posts before, including crafts, but here is her craft label at her blog. There is a great Yo-Yo Quilt, some great, easy to crochet slippers, and more. And of course, the rest of the blog is even better!
So...off to dinner and then rubbing some serious pain ointment on my aching wrists, taking a mega Ibuprofen and totally vegging out this evening. Tomorrow the fencing continues into the dark reaches of the poison ivy and oak riddled timber brush. Oh joy...