Shovelling winter bedding into the wind is hard on the eyes – and the lens.
Can you see all the dust on the camera lens?
My hopes for an early spring are gone. It seems this Northerly pattern is parked and here to stay. So it is cold dusty work.
Though it seems it is only me who cares. The sun comes out a little more every day and we do rise above freezing in the day time and the animals seem happy. It is 19F/-7C as I write this morning.
I have been working on the creep for Poppy’s babies. We are going to have cold piglets so I have redesigned the area. I have two new heating pads coming in for them. The pads are actually hard bright red mats. They are way less of a fire risk than the heat lamps plus the babies can lie right on them and get warm. Straw on top of them is not allowed so there will be an area just for the mat within a little piglet house so the heat is trapped a wee bit. I will set one up today and see how warm it gets in there.
For their first few days they will have an additional heat lamp, and heat mat, in the doorway of the creep where they usually hang out when really little. For the first few days they don’t like to move far from Mum and these are the days when they need the most heat too. Of course Mum prefers to be much cooler which is OK because the barn is not heated.
There will be another corner of the creep that is full of straw so we will see what they prefer.
I hope Poppy holds off until April – when we have at least a chance of some warmer weather. Her body tells me we have at least two weeks to go. Maybe three. Hopefully three.
I hope you have a lovely day.
And thank you for all your loving and lovely messages yesterday. Many of you have been here, in The Lounge, together with me, for years now and we have all been through many cycles of life and death. Your company and support during the highs and lows of farming means a great deal to me. Thank you.
On another subject I am writing the 2018 budget. My farming journey is taking a very big step this year. I think that, if I am careful, and tighten my belt, this year I will bring the farm very close to being self-sufficient; in that it will pay for itself, and sustainable; in that it can sustain itself with very little waste. These two are intermingled. Next, I need to make a profit.
The farm sustaining the farm and feeding itself and it’s pets and people AND funding my family travel, PLUS paying the rents and taxes on the farm-land is my ultimate goal. Visiting my own kids is not a choice – it is essential to the well being of myself and my children. So I include this in my farm budget. And the taxes in this county are very high but must be included too.
It is a good goal though and I have one more season to achieve it then hold to it. Our John retires from his summer job at the end of this coming summer, so all subsidies from his income will be gone, along with his income. I am too young to retire though, so I will take it from there. Big breath.
WEATHER: Cold and sunny.
Wednesday 03/14 0% / 0 in
Mainly sunny. High 46F. Winds WSW at 15 to 25 mph.
Wednesday Night 03/14 10% / 0 in
A clear sky. Low 26F. Winds WNW at 10 to 15 mph.
7:06 am 6:58 pm
Waning Crescent, 9% visible 5:44 am 4:15 pm