Spring Sounds

As Gracie and I worked, yesterday morning, hauling out fork-fulls of winter bedding and spreading it across the corridor field,  flock after flock of geese flew overhead, crying out with their distinctive melancholic call. But they were flying North.  No need for melancholy.  They have decided that the warm-up is on its way.  I am on their side.

I saw three fat Robins yesterday and heard the call of the Red Winged Blackbird. Spring is on its way. TRUE!

If you are in the same hemisphere as The Farmy: pat yourself on the back, I will help  – Pat, Pat, Pat!! I think we made it to the other side – us warriors of the winter. There will be more weather but winter has lost its grip.  Spring is on its way!

Am I pregnant yet? poppy-006 We don’t know Poppy, darling. Time will tell and all that!

Poppy went into Standing Heat yesterday morning. It was not a perfect heat, but My Pig Mentor and I decided to breed her anyway as the semen waiting in its little bag was not going to last much longer. Tane the little boar did his job well, snuffling with her and getting her excited. In fact HE got a wee bit excited too and puddled out to see if Tima might want to share his excitement, he began to butt her in the side (pig foreplay)  and she turned on him showing her teeth, squealed, spun like an eel and bit him. He backed off in a hurry and went straight to bed. poppy-043

When the girl says no she means NO.  Pigs know these things. And apparently Tima is still a virgin.



The tiny glass house is in full production, plants everywhere.  And the tomatoes are already coming out to harden off in the weak almost spring sun. poppy-026

The promise of summer is like a drug. We are drug along in its wake.  In fact – like yesterday – we run ahead of it!


Albeit very, very slowly.

Gracie has gone. The things she has seen this visit!   And now- She has climbed back on her train for Wisconsin and the university.  She and I are hoping she can make it back one more time before the term is over and she goes back to Korea.   Then, she has decided to try and make a roof top garden on top of the apartment building where she lives in Korea. She is going to make her boyfriend carry bags of potting-mix up in the lift. We both had a wee giggle about that.  She loves the farm.

Oh I almost forgot to tell you. I was standing scratching Lady’s head and saw her belly move. Her calf was dancing a tango inside there. I  kept double checking with my brain that I was seeing what I was seeing but it was definitely little hooves jigging in there.  Lady A just watched me solemnly and leaned her head in further for a scratch. She loves her head to be scratched behind her ears. But now we know she has a live calf in there and her udder is starting to fill out ever so slightly.

I have given them both the lecture about NOT calving while I am in Portland  (the 27th – 29th) for the weekend but they just blinked and gently cited Murphy’s law.   Have you seen a cow blink. It is like a tide. Closing in and then seeping out. Liquid. Ordained.  “What is, what is… relax” –  those eyes say.”Que Sera Sera” (Are cows multi lingual?) This is how a cow thinks.

Time to get to work.

I hope you have a lovely day, Oh I wish you were here.. all of you.. we would have the winter cleaned out of the barns in no time.

Your friend on the farm




52 Comments on “Spring Sounds

  1. I love the sunbathing animals. The geese are on their way! I guess they will arrive here soon.
    Poor little Tane, he looks so sad. I do hope Poppy is pregnant. We shall have to wait and see, are there sticks for pigs to pee on?

  2. Now either Tima is going to be a hard lady to please or else when she finds out she will be a raving maniac…but poor Tane look most dejected….Poor boy did his best only to be bitten on the rump by his lady love…wonder if that happens in real life!
    Common Poppy..you’ve had your semen now get preggy we are all waiting like shorn sheep

  3. Yes, the geese are heading north from Scotland too. And the blackbirds and robins are in good voice also and the crows are busy nest building.

  4. Oh Tane, the rejection stings for a while I’m sure. The dogs and pigs in the sun look so relaxing. Would it be wrong to nap with them? I think there is a saying about sleeping with pigs or dogs, but they look so relaxed in the sun.

    I’m having a “I can do this” day today. Last night the vet trained us in doing subcutaneous fluids for Gracie. The worst part is the POKE. I get to be the bad guy and shove all the pills down her throat and now I get to puncture her once a day with a HUGE needle. Ugh, I hate being the one inflicting pain, but she seems to still love me and come to me when she feels bad. Hubs helps, but just can’t ‘man up’. Whoever said Women are the weaker sex had it all wrong. Physically maybe we are, but by god when it comes to willpower and mental stamina – I think we run circles around them!!!

    Are women just more determined and stubborn? Or is it just me? Love and hugs to you all for your support!

    • I remember when we killed the 5 cockerels out of a batch of 10 chicks, my then husband was all set to draw their innards. One finger on the appropriate opening and he fled, not to be seen again until I had finished the job!

      I love it that Gracie will make a roof carden – a great contribution to the battle against climate change: urban heat islands (several degrees hotter than the surrounding countryside) can be alleviated by covering the rooftops with growing things.

      Have a good day everybody and enjoy the springlike weather some of us are enjoying.

    • It’s the same here, once, upon getting a new horse that hadn’t had a rabies shot I picked up the prepared syringe from the vet’s office and gave it to my husband (it was HIS horse). He looked at me in horror, this is a 1000 beast and a very small needle. He said he’d hold her, fortunately she didn’t even twitch as his ‘holding her’ translated into one hand on the lead rope while he turned in the other direction. If she had protested we both would have been airborne!

  5. I could read your thoughts all day, C. So beautiful and serene. Thank you so very much for sharing your life with us all. Xo

  6. I wish we were there too. Fingers crossed for a preggers Poppy. She won’t be a little girl anymore, then, will she? Dear me, even Poppy’s growing up. Time flies. Winter is making a humiliated retreat, he is. And summer is on her way. Not sure about those seasonal genders, but something like that is happening. You can see it and feel it in your photos.

  7. Wonderful post today (well, they all are) as I believe we are getting first hand views of LIFE on the farmy in so many ways. Thank you Miss C 🙂

  8. Fingers crossed for a pregnant Poppy-pig. Maybe she’ll settle down once she’s got the responsibility of family. When she’s got twelve kids tugging at her skirt-tail, she might not have as much time to raise a ruckus.

  9. Glad to hear you are on your way to Spring. Our cows are multilingual. They speak French and English. French when we want them to move and they don’t want to go. English for their daily move to new grass. Though, if you move them to new grass, they’ll happily understand any language.

  10. So many lovely thoughts and sights here this morning… animals basking in the sun, hopeful Poppy in illuminating sun, and lots of lush greenness reaching high to meet the light. I think it’s the most amazing thing to see movement in the belly of a mammal. Those little hooves sliding along and poking. It’s even more amazing to feel it with your hands… Daisy deer allows me that special time with her before birth. Of course Daisy comes home about a month before delivering – I think she relishes in getting a little attention before she gets busy mothering!

  11. Funny to think that Poppy, who we first met as a tiny ginger scrap of piglet, is now hoping to produce her own tiny scrap of life. I have every digit crossed that she’ll have caught. Poor Tane is such a hero, and that ungrateful Tima will soon work out what she’s missing out on! Can’t help feeling she’s going to play hard to get, though….

  12. Hopeful, hopeful, hopeful about Poppy. I hope Tane doesn’t feel used for his giddy up and go help with Poppy, only to be shot down by Tima. tsk tsk…Actually kind of funny in a “boys are so easy” kinda way. Bye bye Gracie, safe journey back to Wisconsin. Enjoy the birds, Miss C. Happy day for you and yours.

  13. The sun porch garden is amazing! I am inspired and might have to ask Papa Hen to construct something similar for us for next winter… Love the picture of rejected Tane. Poor guy. But I think Tima will come around eventually.

  14. Poor tane! That picture of him tells it all. Could you imagine if we all turned up at the farmy, in loads of buses, cars and bikes. The noise! The chatting, laughing. We would soon have those barns ship shape, like a whirlwind. Either that or drive you mad! x

  15. You write so beautifully – every post is a treat to read ! (And I majored in English Lit. in college… so I know good writing when i see it!) Thanks for taking us along on your splendid journey. For a few moments each day we are there with you on your wonderful farm. On another note, spring is always such a joyful time and never more than on a farm. We used to love it when the Snow Geese and Canada Geese flew over our farm in Quebec each spring and stayed, for the night, in the St. Lawrence River just below us. What a noise they all made once they’d all congregated. It used to remind of me of a packed football stadium! As soon as it was light, off they’d go – making room for the next contingent of geese to arrive. (Quebec allows the hunting of Snow Geese now because there are so many. We had friends we allowed to hunt on our farm and I have such good memories of serving up Snow Geese breast which I’d cooked in broth, a bit of our maple syrup and some onion. All the people helping us to ‘sugar’ were always fed very well – and the flow of rum never ceased !)

    • Wow, that sounds like an amazing time.. i have never even seen this process, but i do like maple syrup! And how wonderful to have whole flocks of geese overnighting at your place.. what a sound and a sight!

      • Hi Cecilia – those times are very special to my heart. I’ve been feeling very nostalgic for all the good times we used to have at our farm. The family in Quebec misses us – and all the company we’d get from the States because life was (not so much in winter…) such a lot of fun with friends and family. The slant of the sun right reminds me of those hard-working but fun days ‘sugaring’ – so I’m missing both the and my husband very much…

        • Oh yes.. You are having a Missing day.. In understand those – I sometimes I think The Missing means we have good wide awake hearts.. it surely must be healthy.. much love for your sugary memories.. c

      • I’m thinking of writing a post about those times. I wrote a little article when we lived in Malta about sugaring, complete with a few photos. How foreign that must have felt for the Maltese people – there’s not a lot of trees there and, for sure, NO SNOW !!

  16. I get such a kick out of Ton and Boo who always seek out the company of the pigs. I’d just love to know what they are thinking. The plant house looks amazingly chockful of goodies. poorTane! Being used as a tease! He looks mighty sad and rejected. And him sooooo cute.

      • I just shoveled a half yard of compost and discovered that I’m definitely not in summer shape myself!

          • My arms and shoulders are still protesting. I fully intended to spread the jobs out but in the end one chicken coop – albeit a very small one – one duck pen – whooee a sinus clearing for sure! – one goat pen and about three feet of Percy’s packed down hay straw bed in two days. I. Am. Done. For. But what a good feeling when it’s done! We haven’t heard the blackbirds yet but the cardinals and chickadees have been singing and the geese are flying. What a joy spring is!

  17. Morning Celi! the Portland crowd needs to see that picture of Tima and Tane laying in the sun and protected by Boo and Ton! what a grand one!! the doggie Boys just watching life go by thinking “what a great place we have for home ~ we wouldn’t trade this farm for nuttin’ “!!!!! the plants look great! have a great day!!

  18. What a day that would be if we all gathered together to clean winter out of the barn! I’m sure we’d get it done in short order, but I’m sure we’d have a lot of fun doing it, too! I think it would be a bit noisy!! I’m in!

  19. I am glad your cows are multilingual! Was out walking the dogs with a pal today in the sunshine and we saw blossom on trees – spring is definintely on its way!

  20. Your words and photos today are little rays of sunshine and laughter radiating across the globe, making me smile. Spring is definitely there, even from here I can feel it, as I can sense autumn for us. It’s wonderful how each season has its own nature, even winter & the humid days of summer which I enjoy but could do with a little less of. It’s lovely Gracie will create her own little Farmy garden in Korea 🙂

  21. We are having amazing weather here which is very unusual for this time of year. Wish I could send you some! Going to be 68 degrees tomorrow and I haven’t had to turn the heat on in a week.

  22. What a wonderfully happy post which will set each of us up also for the day warm and rearing to go ! Love the sunbaking contingent and Poppy’s face . . . but most of all loved clicking on the computer just a tad ago to find yesterday’s misty farmy picture as my background. I had forgotten the koalas were gone and just stared at the evocative mist so much clearer on my big screen! Hello to the spring prairies . . .

  23. I am a day late with commenting. Spring has sprung well every second day at least. I suppose nature is being gentle on our eyes after months of endless greyness. This morning was frosty with several signs warning of ice on my to the opticians. It sounds like a Piggy paradise party was had over at the Farmy. Poor tane being rejected! He does look so rejected in that photo.

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