Saturday, July 30, 2011


Guest post by C. I'm on vacation with K this week. She asked me to post some pictures.
Lovely beach weather.
A great place to enjoy a good book. 
 K brought a load of great eating from her garden, including this enormous cabbage head. 
This week we were lucky enough to have a wonderful biology lesson just over our dune cross over.   Topsail Island is the nesting site for a couple of sea turtle breeds.  Turtle volunteers on the island have been helping to protect turtle nests and turtles for over 20 years.   Here is a loggerhead nest that hatched three days ago.  The volunteers walk the beach looking for turtle tracks every day.    They verify that there is a nest and mark it.  Nests hatch typically 60 days after they are laid.  When the time is close, they sit out and watch the nest.   They watched this one for days but missed the hatchout.  
The turtle volunteers build a ramp to the sea when a turtle nest is ready to hatch. 
These are some turtle tracks where some of the straggling hatchlings came out the night before and made their way to the sea.
After three days the turtle volunteers dig out the nest and count the hatched and unhatched eggs.  
This nest had 103 hatched eggs.  This is the first little hatchling they found.  The nest turned out to be very deep, almost three feet down. 
They found 9 of the 103 adorable little hatchlings as they dug out the nest. 
We got to watch them scamper to the sea when they let them go (those four little dark blobs are turtles that had already been let go).  We have been going to this beach for several years and have seen these marked turtle nests.  It was exciting to get this up close view.

Sunday, July 24, 2011


We lost Oreo Friday.  He had spent Thursday night outside.  J saw a buzzard in the field Friday and went to investigate.  It was Oreo.  We don't know what got him.  It could have been the guard dogs because J found him near where the goats spent the night.  He was a mean tough cat with a big personality. We will miss him. 
Oreo 2003-2011.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Clean Slate

Wow, it's so nice to have such a big open space.
 Unfortunately, this is the last time it will look this way.
J has already started moving my stuff out of the garage to the shop.  I still won't be able to use the wood working equipment until we get electricity to the shop.  I also need lots of shelves, places to hang tack and a work bench.  This construction process is never ending.

Monday, July 18, 2011

Trail Ride

Our 4-H group had a small trail ride yesterday.  The person that was going to go with us that knew other trails got kicked and couldn't ride so that left us going on Horse Heave again. We had 2 4-Hers and 5 adults. Joe was going to ride his dad's horse Lady but she coliced the day before.  She seemed fine yesterday but we didn't want to stress her.  Someone else brought an extra horse for me to ride.  She was a 3 year old QH that had not been ridden since last  October.  She actually did really well. 
 E rode Hank because we haven't put shoes on Pep in over a year.  It doesn't seem to make a difference though, she gets abscesses weather we shoe her or not.
E rode up near the front for most of the ride.  This was an entirely different position for her.  I think she liked the change of scenery.

Saturday, July 16, 2011


I currently have lots of daylilies in bloom.  Here are some of my favorites.  They were all a gift from J's aunt Gail which makes them even more special. 

I especially like this double one.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011


Jessica is lame.  J is very depresses because he was planning on being able to take her on the endurance ride this year.  She had never been lame before, unlike E's horse Pep who seems to have more lame days than sound. 
 She pulled a shoe the day before the farrier came and was extremely lame when he reset her shoes.  I was hoping it was just sore from having pulled the shoe but it hasn't gotten any better.  Now I'm worried that maybe she fractured her coffin bone.
 I borrowed the portable x-ray machine from work and J was a willing helper.
 It takes some effort to get the right angle.
I took several views and don't see a fracture.  She is still lame however.  I might have to get the local equine vet to come take a look and possible re x-ray her with her digital machine.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Late Comers

The last nanny finally kidded with a set of twins a mere 2 months after everyone else. J has named this one the midnight caller because it yelled all night out in front of our bedroom window the night it was born.  
 They are about 2 weeks old now
 We have been keeping them in the barn lot because they won't be able to keep up with the herd yet.
J thought it was time to band them so I said I would help but he had them caught and banded while I was still taking pictures.  I said "what are you, a one man band?"  Then I realized the pun.

Saturday, July 9, 2011

The Garden

The garden is doing great this year. 
 The 4 cabbages are huge and ready for the fair.
 The snow peas are growing wild.  I have tried to contain them with twine but they have outgrown the supports.
 E has already picked a mess of beans and cooked them for us.
 I can't wait for these to turn red so I can start having bacon and tomato sandwiches again.
 I have no idea what is wrong with this puny pepper plant.  It stays wilted half the time and is 1/4 the size of the others.
 I don't know how many squash I've picked (and given away).  But I noticed something has been eating the blooms.
 Then I found Toad.  I can't decide if he is eating them or after whatever else is.
I'm trying the cucumbers on a trellis this year.  It looks like they are off the a good start.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

The Great Escape

 We got the dreaded call the other day, "Your cattle are out."  The last time we got the call it wasn't ours, but this time it was.
A group of cows and calves found a section of fence where the post had rotted off and they were able to get out and into a neighbors  hay field.  The problem is that the hay field is along the main road and there is no fence between the field and road.
But J hasn't been training his cows for nothing.
He just swooks and they follow.
Two bulls also were out but they were hidden by the tall grass.
 It took a little more effort to drive them back in but still pretty uneventful.  J moved them to another field so he won't have to worry until he can get the fence fixed.  It's nice to have calm cattle that are use to rotational grazing.  they are so much easier to work with. 

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Barn Progress

The barn now has a roof and sides but no ends. 
 We picked green for the roof and white/grey for the sides.
 The gravel was spread in the shed yesterday.  J originally thought he wouldn't put gravel in the shed but the builders convinced him that once the dirt dried out it would be so powdery that it would get on everything.
 The inside is coming along.  It's not in the plans for the builders to do anything to the inside walls.  I'm still not sure how or if we will finish them.
 I chose a glass door for between  the riding area and the shop. Never know when you might have to check to make sure a horse isn't going by before you come out of the shop.  I'm not sure where to put the water spigot. I thought just outside the main door and maybe have a hitching post/wash area there.  It could also be handy to water the ring, but someone else suggested inside near the shop door.  I think that might get messy if there was a leaky hose or something.
We've got a lot of grass to plant now and maybe some kind of plantings on the bank.  This might be J's excuse to finally get a riding lawn mower.
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