Saturday, January 8, 2011

Planned Parenthood on the Farm......

Yeah, planned parenthood on the farm does not work.  Actually, I have come to realize that farm animals have a way of shattering all of my aspirations of being an organized, well-planned out, goal setting, on task hobby farmer extraordinaire.

Take Crazy Daisy.  My 2 year old LaMancha.  Wanna know why she is driving me crazy?

See that?  Yep, that would be an udder.  An udder that is obviously getting quite large indicating kids, oh probably within 2 weeks I guess.  She never stands like that with her legs almost crossing.  Wanna know why she is standing like that?  She is cold. Probably cuz it was about 14 degrees outside when I took this picture this afternoon.  Why would I, hobby farmer extraordinaire wannabe, ever breed goats to kid in January, in the dead of winter, when its flippin below 30 degrees most of the month?  I WOULD NOT!  I MEAN I HAVE 2 COLLEGE DEGREES, I HAVE COMMON SENSE.  I planned my breedings this year.  I thought I took charge.  I put Jed in with 2 of the Shetland ewes in late November for April lambs, I bred the 2 LaManchas I planned on breeding because I walked the bucks to the girls and when the breeding was over, I walked the bucks back.  Daisy was not in that walk.

Nor was Sassy my Nigerian Dwarf who I thought was looking more fluffy than normal and then the udder thing showed up.

That's fluffy Sassy on the left.  So it looks like these girls are going to be "kidding" soon, too soon for me!  So this means the point of conception was back in September.  What was going on in September?  I don't know. It was back to school.  It was hot.  My bucks are not in with the does and sheep.  Lil' Texas, my Nigerian buck, had got out a couple of times. When? I don't know.  Was Sassy out with him? I don't remember back that far.  Then there is Patty's LaMancha buckling. When did I take him out and put him the other 2 bucks? Was it before September?  I don't know.  I thought it was. Could he be the source of my now completely stressed out mind in this matter?  Maybe. I will worry about the daddy issue once the babies are born and they are healthy and warm and that I am there cuz  I am just freaked that babies are coming in the dead of winter....January of all months. Barf.  I need to order things from my catalogs tomorrow so I have everything on hand.  I picked up milk replacer just in case today. Good grief I am much for hobby farmer extraordinaire this year and its only January 8th.

Thursday, January 6, 2011

I Miss You Already

How does one celebrate the life of a best friend?  This is question that has tugged at my heart all week.  I wasn't going to post anything about this but then I wanted to share and write down how much the love of an animal can be part of one's life. Perhaps the sharing is the way to celebrate.
On Monday my cat Linus passed away after a very short battle with cancer.  I could never say Linus was just a cat.  He was a best friend.  He was and always will be one of my children. I brought him home from the animal shelter when he was almost 7 weeks old.  That was 17 years ago.  In human years that is well into the 90's. Over the past few days I have been struggling with emotions as I have been reflecting on all that has transpired in 17 years and realizing how much one animal that I loved played such a huge part in my life, always there to help keep a smile on my face.  Time does go way to fast.
Over the past 17 years I got divorced, almost lost my house because I could not afford it after just having graduated from college and being newly divorced; started teaching 17 years ago; got my Master's Degree; had 3 Amish barns built; collected many farm animals;  raised 4 Newfoundlands who have all passed away; struggled to pay bills; and in all of these highs and lows, Linus was the one constant in my life.  He made me laugh, he gave me a shoulder to cry on, he sat on my lap or rested on my shoulder. 
He was always there.

I can't remember him ever not being in the house.  He has always been there, with me, for me. For 17 years Linus has been part of my life.  There are so many things I miss about him.
I miss sharing my milk and cookies with you before bedtime.
I miss scolding you for eating a bird when you know I fed you Fancy Feast cuz you were my favorite.
I miss you sneaking on my Mac'n Cheese  with your paw.
I miss having you sit on my lap when I grade papers.
I miss forgetting to turn off the water in the sink after you had a drink.
I miss you locking up the keyboard on my laptop when you walked across it.
I miss walking around the yard at night with a flashlight looking for you
cuz you were out after kitty curfew.
I miss you spilling my cereal on Sunday morning because you wanted the milk.
I miss you tripping me when I open the front door when I come home from school.
I miss you constantly jumping through the screen door on the porch 5 minutes after I fixed it.
I miss you meowing at me because I slept in and your breakfast was late.
I miss our arguements on why you can't go outside.
I miss laughing at you sitting at the front door 5 minutes after I did finally let you out
because I told you it was cold and you didn't believe me.
I miss picking you up and dancing with you to my favorite songs.
I miss you sleeping next to me on cold winter nights.
I miss our Eskimo kisses everyday.
I miss everything about you Linus.
I know your in a better place now, catching up with the Newfies, and playing with Tasha.
One day you and I will share a glass of milk again.  Until then, just remember I love you.