June 30, 2013

boys and chicks



 
These little ones of mine, they love to hug the chicks. We pop into the barn many times each day to visit the 'babies' and to give them a snuggle (: They are so pretty, all those different colours, markings and ages. I cannot wait until they are big enough to join the grown-up hens outside. Chickens really are so happy running about in the grass (:

June 20, 2013

Matilda





 
We brought home this wonderful girl just 4 1/2 days ago and oh! How we are loving her!
She is a rescue, and we really don't know anything about her life before.
She is pure love, such a noble, gentle, beautiful soul!
 

June 14, 2013

June 13, 2013

more farm life

 
Wooley Pippin


Teapot


 
My crazy fence, built to keep a certain naughty goat out of my flower garden; I was completely unsuccessful and now I give up. The goat and lambs romp and eat through my flowers with great joy (-; The lovely dreamcatcher gate was here when we moved here (:
 
 
One of our downstairs neighbours

 
Jason gardening in the rain



 
I have wrapped my front garden in saris to keep the naughty chickens away from my newly planted seedlings!

 
Isabella took this. I was actually genuinely holding a peony, it was not staged (-;

Chickens!





 
Last May we ordered eight chicks from a local hatchery, and then two Ameraucanas from a local fella. We have been offering our eggs for sale and well, ten chickens were not nearly enough to keep up with the egg orders. Plus, we want to eat our lovely fresh eggs too! So this May we got tons of new chickens! First I got 11 chicks from another local chicken person, then four more in a trade for our rooster, and then I bought 11 laying hens and three pullets that will be laying in a month or so. A friend gave us two lovely roosters as well (we had to trade the other one because he kept attacking Ollie!) We have chickens free-ranging around the barn/house, chicks in a brooder in the bathroom anc larger chicks in our outdoor chicken ark!
I have plans to pick up some more chicks yet again; five heritage breeds ~ Australorp, Sussex, Faverolle, New Hampshire and Rhode Island Red.
I am a bit chicken-crazy but I do love them so. Tons, actually. And the chicken aprons/hen savers or whatever you choose to call them, They look absolutely adorable! They bring me so much joy, my wonderful hens flitting around the barnyard wearing flowery and gingham printed aprons, making me think of a Beatrix Potter illustration (:
 

June 12, 2013

napping with buddies


 
Jude (unbenownst to him) naps with cats, and Ollie sleeps with his 'baby' (pronounced 'DeeDee').
And me, I do not nap (-;

June 8, 2013

Lovely Teapot

 
Yummy! A dandelion!
 
Teapot is just the gentlest soul. Sometimes when I am scratching her cheeks she closes her eyes, so content..My eyes tear up a little every time she snuggles in close to me (every time I sit down, basically) because I just feel so blessed to be a sheep~mama. Oh, I do love her so. And I know that she was previously destined to be a meat sheep and I think often to myself how lucky she is! In 20 or so bottle lambs I picked only her to come home with me that cold, windy, rainy April day. And here she stays, and grows, and gets chin scratches by a silly shepherdess that loves her more than can be adequately captured in writing.

June 6, 2013

Early harvest


 
 
Lovely rhubarb and asparagus harvested from our land. Blessed eggs from our happy hens!
 
~~~~~
 
And what did I do with the rhubarb? Oh, I made Srawberry-Rubarb crumble! Yay!

 
 
^__^



play play play!

 
Jude and I constructed a water wall, using some plastic bottles, nails and an old board from the barn. Here we've connected the hose to stream the water through but that was only after manually pouring into the top bottle lost it's appeal. Now we're trying to think of a fun way to use other things to direct the water, like tubes and gutters and such (: A great thing to play with on hot summer afternoons!

 
Ollie loves the water wall too, as do the chickens and lambs who drink from it all day long (:

 
Then we rolled these log pieces into a good spot and created a fun circle to climb/walk along. We have a few boards for bridges/ramps too! Both boys love this. We can spend tons of time playing here.


And then, we drew all over the logs with sidewalk chalk. It looked really pretty until the lambs rubbed their faces all over it!

 
 
Rainy day fun...or 'tons of mosquitos on a damp day' fun. Beans and rice in a sensory bin.
 
 
 
And of course, the classic piling up of cushions and pillows to jump on (:
 

 
 ^__^
 
Right now, I have some strawberry-rhubarb crumble baking in the oven. Only 5 more minutes and it's done! Yum yum yummy! The horses were very kind to eat all the huge wild grass growing around the rhubarb patch so it is much easier to harvest this year. Jason has started some pizza dough in the bread maker so we'll wait on the crisp and have some delish homemade pizza first. A feast!

June 3, 2013

Jason feeds the lambs

 
Cuties, all three!

Mud.



 
Everyone loves mud!
 
^__^

lovely lamb wool


Here is a close-up of Pippin's gorgeous, soft wool. I could pet him all day long, he is so soft and silky. What remarkable creatures are sheep, clad in layers of plush fiber. Wondrous!

June 1, 2013

Hugging Woolly Pippin

 

 
Woolly Pippin is a love-being. Since the first moment he arrived he has loved being held, hugged and snuggled. He is huge now, much larger even than the last photo but he still happily sits on my lap for lambie snuggles. Oh my goodness, I love these lambs of ours so much! I only wish they didn't grow so fast..They slept in a crib beside my bed for a month and a half so I could bottle feed them at night but then they became way too huge to sleep in there; Their diapers couldn't go the distance anymore and they would leap out over the bars and try to sleep with me. They seem fine in the barn now, although I do miss them trotting around the house (-;
 



Bottle-feeding my sweet lambie



Here I am giving Teapot her bottle (:
In everything I had read when we first adopted lambs, I was told NOT to hold the lambs while feeding them.
Well, miss Teapot just would not drink her milk unless I picked her up! She had been in a small space with about 10-15 other bottle lambs and they fed from a communal bucket with nipples along the side of it. From what I could see when I went to pick out a lamb, some of them were drinking up all the milk and the weaker ones weren't getting any. Very sad.
Our little Teapot didn't even bother to try getting her share. She just sat in the corner and looked up at me with her sweet, sad brown eyes. I grabbed her up and took her home and now she is a happy, happy lamb (:
She was very sick though, and had we not taken her in I'm sure she wouldn't have made it. It was a stressful first two weeks and I thought I was going to lose her...but she pulled through, thank goodness.
I love her so much!
She hides under my skirts and snoozes with her head on my foot, just like a dog! And she loves to have her cheeks scratched. Oh, she is such a lovely sheep-friend!
Now that she is older, she drinks her bottle while standing on the ground. This is a good thing, as she is very heavy! But when she was much smaller, I had to hold her under my arm and cuddle her to encourage her to eat. She wouldn't let anyone else feed her ~ I am very much her Mama (:

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