Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Mower Mouth

In honor of our future farm members, I present to you, Shaun the Sheep's Mower Mouth. As you would expect from the maker's of Wallace and Grommit, it's worth nearly every second of the seven minutes this video takes. And it's sure to make you laugh. :)

Family Planning: Same Story, Second Verse

We're courting some goats right now.

Yes, you heard me right: courting and goats.

A few weeks ago we received a somewhat serendipitous call from a neighbor we met once who heard we might be in the market.

She tells the story of some other community members that had raised goats for half a decade, and are ready to move on. Four goats need good home. An excellent breed for milk and even meat.

I thank her for thinking of us and take down her number. Mostly, it feels like a true inclusion into a community that I desperately want to be part of. Mr. Bee's been wanting goats for some time. Something about an overwhelming portion of our land inhabited by an invasive species of blackberries and more Salmon berries than we could feasibly consume in a season. Or was it the benefit of fresh milk? And cheese?

Now I'm not a fan of blackberries, but I can't justify twice daiy milkings. Mr. Bee, however, can. And Mr. Bee is close at hand.

"Let's take them."

I laugh. "We don't need goats."

We later show up at a beautiful forested property. A couple of ducks in a pen. More than a handful of hens running around. Roosters strutting at our feet. And four kinder goats.

Just what we'd expected.

Except two of the goats are babies.

I'm not prepared for this. My defenses are down. They are five months old. Still nursing occasionally. Did
I mention that everything around me is reproducing? My college roommate is some four months along with her first. J&E have the sweetest newborn you've ever seen. My Facebook (yes, us homesteaders still use FB on occasion!) feed is filled with high school acquaintances posting photos of their toddlers and baby bumps--it is a toss up which is most prevalent.

"Yeah, thanks for having us out . We'd love to take two, maybe the mama and one of the babies?"

I'm surprised to hear that it's not Mr. Bee's voice. It's my own.

So now we're slowly letting the goats get used to us as were visit in our spare time and work to fence a pen of blackberries and build a shelter for the pair.

Soon enough we'll have a baby of our very own. October is our planned arrival. Of course, we'll post plenty
of pictures on the day she arrives. We'll post pictures of her mommy too.

Monday, September 17, 2012

Replenishing Our Stores

I feel it. Deep inside.

The urge to can the last of the tomatoes; boil a few more gallons of duck, ham, and chicken stock; and
purchase bulk quantities of fabric and yarn for the coming months is welling up. I'm itching to construct
our wood shed. I'm plotting when we'll finish the roof of the duckmahall. I've already started labeling the
pantry shelves and adding organizing racks and hooks to every storage space.

I've got crockpot recipes pinned for dinners. I'm pulling my sweaters out of their closet hiding and
contemplating the purchase of more fleece socks or at least another pair of boots.

Never mind that it was in the 80s this weekend.

Or that it's been one of the longest, warmest summers in our history.

I know what's coming. I know how quickly 75 degrees and sunny transforms into a cloudy mess of precipitation that won't let up again until May, or April if we're lucky. Don't get me wrong, I love the dreary gray skies; I feel most at peace curled up by the fire with a good book and a rainstorm. But I'm not going to let it catch me off guard.

Not this year.

There's work to be done. Inside and outside of our little homestead, on the land and in our hearts & minds.