Good morning Farmy

After being away from the farm for ten days I am pleased to report that all the animals are well and shiny and the ones who should be fat are fat and the ones who should be lean are still lean.

little pigs

Our John did a very good job. Above are the little pigs – they are growing very well.

calves and pig

John  said that last Sunday Sheila turned up at the verandah steps calling out that the calves were out. They were milling about the driveway evidently, when they saw John and Sheila coming towards them from the house they darted straight back through the barn and down the corridor and back through their pen gate and out the other side into their field. John and Sheila behind them. Sheila accepted a banana as a reward and followed them through before John closed the old gate properly.


Such a lovely little herd.

Mr Flowers the peacock, still has this white substance growing on his lower tail feathers dragging them down which is odd. You can see it more clearly in this image. It is hard, like a shell.  It has not spread at all and has been there since these feathers grew. In the mid summer he will lose these long tail feathers which is a good thing. I am still researching it. We had no chicks last year and it looks like this year will be the same.

mr flowers

Cats in the barn. I did not see Moon the new brown stray but John said he had been around. He is a wanderer so I am not worried.


Geraldine, like the dogs,  was unusually attentive.



On the other side at the West Barn all the cows and the breeding pigs are well. Today we will being Alex back over to the home fields – she is the smallest in the herd at the West side and getting a hard time from the big milkers.  Plus she should be due to calve first – late March early April maybe. No sign of  an udder yet so we have a while to go.

milking cows

These cows and Carls their bull  are all locked up on the concrete now, which is not ideal but I don’t want the fields smashed into mud – and they will thaw right out over the next warm ten days,  the pasture needs to begin growing now and get long for spring grazing.

Alex will do better with the calves and Sheila. Alex is the only one who actually looks pregnant but it seems to me Dexters always look round.

If Lady Astor is indeed pregnant I have decided not to let her out on the spring grass until she has calved. Her udder got dangerously large last time and with her calf overdue we ran into troubles with that udder with the skin splitting, mastitis, etc.  We were lucky she did not get full on milk fever. This time she can stay on good dry food until she calves.

Hopefully I have enough hay.  Today we will put the last small round alfalfa bale in with the beef cows. And John is working on our ancient dump truck in the hopes of getting it running so he can  collect one big grass round bale and drop it through the gate for the West Barn cows.  I have two months left of feeding hay,  if the weather behaves (and when has the weather ever behaved) -Lady will be eating the last few bales I think.


I hope she is pregnant.

Poppy, Molly, Tane

I see no signs of pregnancy in these two sows (Molly and Poppy) . But they should be pregnant. They can stay with  Manu the boar until I am sure.


Today I will spend more time cleaning out the barns, this will take me the rest of the week, I think.

I hope you have a lovely day.

Love celi


63 Comments on “Good morning Farmy

  1. Welcome home! I’ll bet your dogs were in a tissy with happiness for your homecoming. What a good pig, that Sheila! I can’t wait to see our sweet pigs again. Our snow berms have grown so high that I can’t see the pigs from the house. And I have several more weeks on crutches. So venturing out into the slippery snow is not a smart idea. Your hay looks so good. We are starting to see a dent in our big hay pile too. So we are all praying for milder weather from here on to spring. Have a great day!

  2. Welcome Home! Wow – Good thing Sheila was on patrol while you were gone! That made me smile as I pictured the calves knowing they were “busted” and promptly heading for their home turf! Good girl Sheila!

  3. Sheila knows she’s your deputy while you’re travelling. She’s the Farm Wife, and takes her responsibilities seriously. I’m so glad John acknowledged her quick thinking with a banana – she deserves it!

  4. I am quite surprised at Sheila… what a clever girl she is! I’ll be curious to know what that white coating is on Mr. Flowers feathers. I love how you have looked everything over and have a plan to move forth with. I hope the weather cooperates!

    • My mind is turning to getting everyone back outside again – there really is no need to shelter for at least another ten days – coming above freezing for so long is going to trick us all into spring behaviour.. c

  5. What a wonderful group of photos, thank you! The header is a “wow” one and the sunshine on the piggies, and others, is so uplifting. Mid-February, and I figure blue skies and bright sunshine to be a bonus this time of year.
    I was wondering if Mr Flowers’ feather problems might be due to just simple aging? Sounds like Sheila is earning her position of pet and not simply taking it for granted.
    Well, time now, as you’re cleaning barns, to dwell on new memories of Milan and London. Hope you have a lovely day too! ~ Mame

  6. I really had to laugh visualizing John and Sheila herding the calves back to their proper place, She is a wonderful, brilliant pig and I am happy that she received a tasty reward.
    I do love all those ginger kitties (and Moon too).
    You have a lovely day as well.

  7. I would be inclined to take a feather sample off to the vet to have him take a look through his microscope. Feathers are mostly keratin….I’m wondering if it’s an overproduction of keratin, or possibly he’s picked up a feather loving parasite and you’re looking at either the debris left behind from the parasites or possibly the production of something the bird is fighting the infestation with…..just a guess 😊

    • Just catching that bird and cutting out a feather would be incredibly stressful for him. That is if I could catch him anyway as he is quite wild.. though sometimes he sits on a certain rafter and his train hangs down quite low I might try then. It has been there since these feathers started to grow on the outside of the shaft. weird. c

  8. If Alex is the only pregnant cow, will you milk her and will she produce enough for everybody? Good to see everybody happy and healthy. Laura

    • Alex would kill me if I tried to milk her plus she is too short for the staunchon. IF Lady is not pregnant then there will be no milk this summer- but we will see.. c

  9. It’s so wonderful when you return and all is well, isn’t it? We were off to CA visiting family for a week recently and returned to find 5 of our flock of 9 ducks gone. We looked everywhere and could only find the body of one, our oldest duck from when we arrived here in 2011. Quite sad really. I’m thinking that predators moved in when not much activity was happening, and the dogs weren’t running free to scare them off.

  10. It is great to read about your adventures around the world..but oh how nice it is to be home! Sheila is one very clever intelligent pig, she knew they had done wrong and she fetched help. I am sure that she could have managed on her own but sometimes a human does come in useful….Lovely to be back on the farm, oh I said that !  well I say it again ..Glad to be home! xxxxx  

    Sent: Thursday, February 16, 2017 at 2:19 PM

  11. Sheila is a great pig! Kind of a Mrs Buttinsky…but in a good way! Good for John taking such good care while
    you had a lovely and much needed break! Cheers!

  12. Ah, they’ve learned to tread water and play nice (mostly) while you were away. Sheila is such a fine farm hand. Glad MR. Flowers’ feathers will shed soon – that white stuff is odd and it would be too traumatic to try to trim them off.
    Love the horizon/field picture – and the hay. Lovely hay!

  13. So happy to hear all is as it should be and Sheila is doing her part to create reason to receive rewards. She is one smart pig if not a little ornery. 🙂

  14. Must be comforting to know that Sheila is running the farm so smoothly when you go away…oh, did I say Sheila? Of course, I meant to say Our John. Silly of me to believe a pig could be in charge 😉

  15. So glad you enjoyed your trip, loved the updates and photos, enjoyed your guest bloggers (well done to them) but I will admit that I am happy to see you home and get such a good update on the farm.. so strange to see no snow and here that you will have warm weather for ten days, I am in the right middle of back to back to back snow storms. . Welcome home, good big pig and here is hoping that your girls are expecting.

  16. I, too, enjoyed your guest bloggers and their life-style stories, but I’m truly glad you’re back! Missed all of the farm kids, too! Your photos are phenomenal! So glad you didn’t get sick this trip! A huge WELCOME4 BACK!

  17. Oh to get sick would be monstrous bad. Well, Sheila has a conscience too–if you break it you buy it. She’s just hilarious. I want to know did she act surprised or huffy when she saw you back? Also, how did Bo and Tonton react to your homecoming?

    • Sheila took no notice of me at all when i returned – just applied herself to her breakfast. Boo would not get off my foot – I could not move – he just kept planting his bottom on my foot. TonTon wiggled his tail right off in delight. Both the dogs were mad with excitement. Not so the pig of course – she is after all a pig and calmly plods through. And pigs are not dogs who succumb to excitement. Boo is still watching me carefully. c

  18. Imagining Sheila’s reasoning entertains me…. hmmm might go for a stroll – oops forgot about the bloody cows – bugger – better get the [acting] boss – ooh banana very good – bloody cows 🐽

    • Haha, now I have this video running through my mind: Sheila hustling John out to get those naughty minions right back where they belong all the while assuring him that it certainly was not her fault and she had to come ALL the way to the verandah just to tell him that those silly creatures don’t know enough to stay in their own field and oh my she really should get some kind of reward for being so conscientious and keeping an eye on things while the boss is away etc., etc. etc.

  19. Pingback: Good morning Farmy | A Small Country Living

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