Sun Dogs

Is it not too early in the winter to find a sundog in our sky?  The sun and her dog. Ice crystals hanging up there? Refracting and reflecting the low rays.  Read More


As in Touch Typing.  Just as well I can touch type, aye!

And if you learnt how to type on one of those big old black typewriters, with the Nuns roaming the aisles wielding long rulers,  you would be able to touch type too.   But I still bash at the keys wearing the letters right off and now it looks like I need to replace the keyboard again. Sigh.

Yesterday was mental trying to get all the feed for the animals in before all my favourite little locally owned feed places closed for the Thanksgiving holiday. Both little towns in opposing directions. A lot of driving. And I TOTALLY forgot to get the human food.  And visitors from home coming tomorrow. Ah well – I have a freezer full. I will make bread and butter today.

However, I achieved some of the things on my list.  And have a list ready for today.  There is much to get through with this cold at my back.  It rained then sleeted then snowed yesterday as though some fat fingered god was clicking the dial through the little winter weather icons checking that all was in working order.  We even got back to sun by the end of the day.

All is in working order I would say.

I have nothing to report really, no pictures either. Just popping in for a coffee.

Have a lovely day.


WEATHER: Clear and a little brisk.

Wednesday 11/22 0% / 0 in
Except for a few afternoon clouds, mainly sunny. High 36F/2C. Winds WNW at 5 to 10 mph.

Wednesday Night 11/22 0% / 0 in
Overcast. Low 28F/-2C. Winds SSW at 10 to 15 mph.

6:48 am 4:29 pm

Waxing Crescent, 18% visible 10:07 am 8:01 pm

ps. No newsletter this month. Something had to give. But the Zazzle account is still alive and doing business. The aprons are the top sellers this month.  Which is a surprise because I thought it would be the calendar. I need to order mine – pronto.  (Plus I need to get busy and make the smaller ones.) Thank you for your orders!  Let me know what you think.








Solemn Cows

I have spent much of the last four days in airports and planes and cars, (mercy America is a big country)  helping out John’s Mum who needed assistance to come back home to Illinois from California after a fall.

Due to hold ups and time changes I feel like most of that travel was in a state of sleeplessness and I arrived home on Sunday shattered. Yesterday was a very physical, hard day getting the barn cleaned up after my absence and getting the pigs up to date. The nicest part was working with John’s mum getting her settled back in her own home.


At the farm: fences had failed and gates had been broken, waters had been depleted and it had been wet the whole time I was away so there was mud tracked all through the house from the dogs and someone’s boots so even the clean up in the house took ages. All the animals had been fed and watered with buckets so all was well in that department. They were ok. And the hard labour was a good thing after all that stuffy flying and hotels and travel. It is tangible and satisfying to work hard.

Also, another section of John’s family is on their way to live here too, and will arrive in a few days, a very young little family in trouble so there is much to do to prepare for their arrival.  The poverty line is a dangerous place in the United States and the boy is right to come home. But this arrival brings difficulty and troubles and anxiety that are not my own, nor of my making and out of my control.

I have lots of food in the freezer though so no-one will go hungry.

But I don’t really want to write about John’s family here in my farm journal  –  this blog is about the farm.


But all these things are clamouring for attention. Re-settling John’s Mum and dealing with the rehab from her fall will be the easiest to assimilate into my routine.


Dealing with the family dynamics of your spouses broken home is more difficult. Tension and unrest are building. Anyway – that is not your business.  Nor mine actually. Our business together is the farm and we will remain focused on that.


But this is how I feel.  (See LOUD bellowing calf below).


And that is OK. No-one has to be feeling good or even doing particularly well all the time.  In fact no one person can. We are all a little broken. All a little damaged. The body is made up of soft tissue and soft emotions. Humans are incredibly badly designed actually – with a self-destruct button very close to the surface. Some people are more broken than others and more susceptible to causing breaks than others and as they slowly self-destruct the shrapnel burrows into the organisms who are close by.  Some seek to break people on purpose, some damage others by mistake and never notice.   We must all be gentle, gentle and as forgiving of them as we can. But, be sensible, build a good shield and wear a life jacket. calf12-015

Kindness is prized. But forgiveness and mercy and kindness are not the easiest path by any means. Put your own oxygen mask on before seeking to help others.

I warned you last week that I may not be able to blog every day over this period.  Please heed this and don’t be worried.  Being pressured to blog defeats its purpose.

I have a lot to do at the moment, though I will not speak of any of this family stuff again nor discuss it in comments.This is a farm journal. A farm blog. Our safe place. And in a month it will be a travel blog. That is something to look forward to.

Today after other chores I am going to try and fix these gates. Gates are not my best. Tima that fattie broke one of them, it was her interior door, and so late yesterday afternoon, that I had to leave her and Tane out in the tin shed for the night. So that is the one I will fix first.

Then I will have to work on picking a pig house up with the tractor and getting it through the mud and into the vegetable garden for Molly. Her babies have to be weaned and I am still waiting on another gate being fixed over at the West barn so I can shift Poppy over there and put Molly in with Sheila.  (Plans within plans within plans)  But that is one gate I cannot fix myself.  So  Molly will need to go into temporary quarters away from her babies.

I hope you have a lovely day.


WEATHER:  Strong Nor’west winds – moving swiftly down past freezing.

Tuesday 11/21 10% / 0 inA mix of clouds and sun in the morning followed by cloudy skies during the afternoon. Morning high of 45F with temps falling to near freezing. Winds WNW at 15 to 25 mph. Winds could occasionally gust over 40 mph.

Tuesday Night 11/21 0% / 0 inClear skies. Low 23F. Winds NW at 10 to 15 mph.

6:47 am 4:29 pm
Waxing Crescent, 11% visible9:20 am 7:11 pm



That’s all I’ve got.  One little fat pig who looks like a topographical map of the world and his rooster.


And often I have a plethora of images, though plethora – with its bloody connotations – might not be the perfect word. Surfeit – no that is not right either as we never have enough farm images. Abundance?

Anyway – today we do not have an abundance. We just have one fat little pig who is happy as a lark at being set free into the harvested fields.

It is dark.  Early morning. I have the next three sold hogs loaded up, plus a very big jack and one of those bolt tightening cross thingies in the back of my truck, just in case.  My tire is fixed but the rims are shot.  I will take the country roads and go slow.  If I sell enough pork maybe I can buy new rims and tires.  I guess I will literally sell until the wheels fall off my chariot.  Because until the hogs are sold I cannot buy new wheels. How about that for a catch 22. Off I go.

Talk soon.


WEATHER: Rain. (Snorts).

Wednesday 11/15 100% / 0.32 in
Becoming partly cloudy after some morning rain. High 51F. Winds WSW at 10 to 20 mph. Chance of rain 100%. Rainfall around a quarter of an inch.

Wednesday Night 11/15 0% / 0 in
A few clouds. Low 28F. Winds NW at 10 to 20 mph.

6:40 am 4:34 pm

Waning Crescent, 6% visible 3:39 am 3:30 pm




Yesterday morning I was out the door very early again to deliver a hog and as I sat on the steps, two dogs behind me,  five cats behind them,  to put on my “going off the property boots” I heard the sleepy good morning grunt of a very mature pig in the garden by the verandah. This was of some concern. Pigs should not be in the garden at the bottom of the steps in the early pre-dawn morning. “Excellent.” I said to the cats.  Read More


SO BABY HAD A DRINK. Then, when baby was not paying attention, Mama disappeared out into the field. Leaving Baby behind.  Read More


Lady Astor has decided that she is going to have Aunty Del’s new baby. Just gently mind you. She is a big cow and does not want to frighten anyone.  Read More


One has to wonder where these ears came from.  Read More


And that is all. Just Speed.  Read More


I have a friend who loves yellow.  The moment I saw this tree from the tractor, as Boo and I rounded the corner at speed, on the way to feeding hay to the mothers, I thought of her. She once wrote a blog post called Yellow. Funny the things that you remember.  These pictures are for you, Good Friend.  Read More