Sunday, February 28, 2010

Wet Goats

J is not the only one tired of the cold wet weather. The goats have really appeared miserable this winter.
Goats are arid animals and do much better in a dry climate. There has been nothing dry about the last 3 months here. J said at least 5 nannies aborted last week. The weather has stressed them that much.
The snow has been around in some places since before Christmas.
Sometimes the only dry spot is on top of a rock.

Friday, February 26, 2010

Midnight Ride

Well, it wasn't exactly midnight and it wasn't precisely a ride but it did involve the horses in the dark.
J has been putting part of a round bale out for the horses between the barn and the house about every 2-3 days. The snow on the south facing slopes had melted so they were grazing some and out of hay.
The first cattle guard is filled in with dirt and ice (much more solid than the one at the house that we dug out last week). The phone rang at 2:18 am. The police had called our neighbor because the horses were in his yard. In the dark he thought they were his and ran them back over the hill (further from our house). He then realized that they were all brown and his were paints, that's when we got called. I rounded up halters and some grain and J and I went out to bring them back. We caught 3 and let the other 2 follow (Spot, bless him, had stayed home). We had to lead them about a mile down a frozen driveway, up the main road and up our frozen drive. All this at 2:30 in the morning with it snowing and wind gusts of 50 mph.
We now have a "horse guard" across the cattle guard at night. Be careful if you come to visit.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Miscellaneous Winter Yard Pictures

Although I much prefer taking pictures of flowers blooming in the yard, it has been interesting taking pictures of the same areas with snow instead.

By the way, my camera is back to working again so I guess a new one will have to wait a little longer.

Monday, February 22, 2010

Calf Breaking

J and the girls finally started on breaking the show steers. E helped get them up (but didn't want her picture on the blog).
V worked the head gate and caught hers first. She also was the first to be holding on to him once she got the halter on and let him out. She did a good job working with him until her hands got tired then J took over.
He worked on leading and calming for a little while then switched back to V.
He calmed down well then J tied him up.
He stayed calm and V was able to brush and rub on him. He probably weighs over a thousand pounds by now. E's steer was a little more uppity and mostly just stayed tied.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

The Big Meltdown

We finally have had some above freezing temperatures. It almost made it to 60 today.
So the snow is actually starting to melt.
Of course this means more runoff in the driveway creating more gullies and ultimately more mud if that is possible.
But for now we are enjoying the warmer temperature.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Horse Judging

When to to B&B horse judging contest today. We had 3 new Jr. team members. This was their first contest.
It was a difficult contest. They used mostly school horses and 5 of the 8 classes were hunter.
The tiny girl is one of our new members. She is 9 and absolutely in love with horses.
I lost 2 girls before the awards so they didn't make the picture.
E was 5th in Jr. reasons and 8th in performance judging. The Jr. team was 6th in halter and 9th in performance. V busted a class and didn't place. She has to judge as a individual, no other senior 4-Her's will judge.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Cattle Guard

The cattle guard has been covered since the snow started in the end of January.
The horses have been the only animals in this field so it hasn't been a problem until last night.
There were some unmistakable signs in the yard this morning. First off, numerous hoof prints. But is that is not enough to convince you,
here is proof positive that the horses were in the yard. I had 8 piles of proof to clean up.
V and E then helped chipping away at the snow and ice.
We got 4 rows cleaned out before everyone gave up.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Something Different

Tomorrow will be the 13th day in a row of no school because of snow. So far they have not gone a single day in February. I'm running out of subject matter other than snow so E took my camera out this evening to take pictures but unfortunately came back with the zoom lens not retracting. It will go back when the camera is turned off then it will zoom in again but not back out. Maybe this will be my excuse to buy a new camera. My canon power shot that I have had for at least 3 years is only 6 mega pixels and I have been thinking about getting a higher one. Any suggestions?
I did a little editing on this picture I took awhile back. If I can get it to print out how it looks on the computer I might enter it in a fair this summer.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Show Steers

Looks like this will be the last year for the show steer project.
J is doing more of feeding and care of the steers than V and E are.
Lately, when he has needed to buy feed, he has to transfer it to the tractor to get it to the barn. The road is too slick to take the truck down there.
He always rubs on the steers when he feeds to help get them use to being touched. V and E just haven't but forth much effort and it has really discouraged J.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Hoof Abscess

Pep is having hoof problems again. She just got over an abscess in her left hind foot now she has one in her right hind.
She was lame for a couple of days until it ruptured out at the coronary band. She is walking better but now the leg is swollen.
I started her on an antibiotic and anti-inflammatory medicine yesterday.
Today the leg is not as swollen. I had to quit giving her the anti-inflammatory medicine however, because it was too bitter (even with syrup) and she wouldn't eat the grain with it and the antibiotic.

Friday, February 12, 2010

Cutting Wood

J has a lot of wood cut. He usually only brings in about a weeks worth to the house at a time. This keeps the stove area much neater than just piling it all up at once. The only problem is that what he has cut is buried under a foot of snow and impossible to find.
Therefore, he had to go to another section where he had some trees down. The calves in this field were very curious at first.
That is until the chain saw started.
Then they high tailed it out of there.
They did get over their initial startle and cautiously watched from more of a distance.
J just cut a tractor dipper load to get by for the next few days.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Same Ol Thing

Have I mentioned that we have snow? Maybe another inch today. No school tomorrow. This makes 8 straight snow days.
It is interesting what effects you can come up with playing with the photo editing.
Of course it helps to have some spectacular subject matter.
Even though the snow is getting to be a chore to work in (especially for J), it still makes for some fabulous scenery.
E has been having such a good time playing pretend farming on farmville, that I made a facebook page just to play with her. It took her a couple of hours however to decide to add me as a friend.

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Rest Time

I caught Bea sleeping on the job. It just doesn't seem like it should be comfortable to lay down on the snow and sleep but she makes it look so.
She stayed this way a little while, raised her head up then went back to sleep.
Those are the goats she is suppose to be guarding in the background. I guess Bumble is on the job back there.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Dreaming of Summer

Self explanatory.
July 2009.
Current conditions.

Friday, February 5, 2010

Snow, Sleet, and Freezing Rain

We have had all three, snow, sleet and freezing rain today. First, we had about 5 additional inches of snow.
It covered everything, including the livestock.
Next, we had freezing rain. It froze on the horses manes and stung as the wind blew it around.
Last came the rain. This just added a new level of misery. Now there is 5 inches of very wet snow that was too slick for J to get back up the driveway. He had to walk up, go to the barn, get the tractor, then tow the truck up.
So are the woes of having a winter birthday, no dinner out. E made me a delicious cake which V iced and J lit the candles. The singing was a little weak but I did make a wish.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010


With all of the snow, rain, mud and cold, we have not been able to ride any this winter. The horses are pretty much on their own. J has set out round bales when the snow was too deep.
But otherwise, the horses have to pick around in the bare spots.
Of course this doesn't appear to be much of a hardship on them. They are all in very good shape.
I, on the other hand, am dreaming of the next show season.
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