Archive for February, 2013

Titty Tickles

Okay, so it sounds obscene, agreed.  But it is coming up on kidding time and these things must be done.  BHF has three new moms to be, three new to the milking scene, three new to the “You are going to do what to my teats, I think not.”  Therefore there is some preparations that need to be taken care of.

First:  The does are to be shaved.  This keeps them cleaner during kidding.  It also allows the farmer to see changes in the udders easily.

Before:  The European Look

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After: The Brazilian Look

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This is Junie B. Jones and she is all shaved and ready for kidding.   You can see how well her udder is forming.   Speaking of udders this is where the titty tickles come in.  From the time the goats came to live on our farm the Farmer has touched the udders for no other reason than someday she planned to milk them.  The farmer’s sons thought it ridiculous and coined the phrase, “Titty Tickles.”

The farmer took video of a tickle session  (Middle son said it should not be shown because the farmer breathes loudly and it looks like she is molesting a goat)

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Glitter and Ruby Red Shoes

Here it is snowing again.  It is not supposed to amount to much, but the farmer is sick to death of it.  It does make things look pretty and sparkly kind of like glitter and just like glitter a little goes a long way.

A friend of the farmer posted this on Facebook:

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This was the farmer’s response:

Damn, it is spring in the farmer’s  head. It is one of those days when if she tries hard enough, closes her eyes, clicks her bare heels together and repeats this three times “There is no place like garden soil, there is no peace like weeding alone, there is no thing more satisfying than home grown”  it would be May.  So readers close your eyes, breathe deep, do you smell soil and green things.  If not repeat the above and believe, just believe.

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Stuff

This past month has been a minimally productive one on the farm side of life but a good sized amount has been done on the family household side.

The new year comes along with cold weather and there is not much to do outside but much to catch up on inside.  Not being one to hold to resolutions the farmer had made a decision to declutter.  Decisions are definite, resolutions can happen this year or well, there is always next year.  The Butting Heads family live in a house that has been passed down through the Farmer’s family for the past eighty years.  The main house is a circa 1790 farmhouse with an early 1900’s house married to it.  When the family moved in, the farmer’s grandmother was still the head of the household and all of her things, along with her mother’s things were here.  After gram passed a lot of stuff, a lot of stuff  was passed onto other family members.  But much still remains.  Not the big stuff, not the Antiques Roadshow stuff, just the stuff.  Corner filler stuff, under the eaves holding the roof up stuff, holy shit why is this stuff still here stuff.  Now don’t think the farmhouse looks like something from TLC’s Hoarders.  This is stuff that is tucked away in those out of sight, out of mind places until now.   The farmer cleaned out two closets and her gram’s filing cabinet.  Mind you the old house only has two closets.  But they are under the eaves and hold much stuff and the file cabinet, well you probably have figured that it was full.    Well, needless to say the garbage man hates her but the farmer’s closets are tidy and the file cabinet now holds stuff from the past decade (not the past 5 decades).

The most interesting things found: the farmer’s mother’s baby book and comb set, the farmer’s grandmother’s baby book and this:

baptismal

A baptismal paper from 1896 recording the baptism of the farmer’s Great Grandmother.  Some stuff is priceless!

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A Lilly in the Snow

The girls and boys venture outside for the first time since the blizzard.

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A Maine Adventure

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Winter farming is usually not too bad.  It is cold. There is snow. However,  Maine this year has been very short on snow. Until this storm, the BLIZZARD. the storm that has shut everything down.   Yesterday you couldn’t even take a Maine adventure and shop at Reny’s.  They closed at 2 p.m. It seems the only ones working are plow guys and farmers.   Snow, no snow. BLIZZARD or not; chores must be done.

A Maine adventure BHF style.

Carrying pails and slop across the road was easier with the use of a sled, but the stuff kept tipping over, not sure how many stale slices of bread are in the road.  Water was frozen, more pails to sled across. Every barn door needed to shoveled before entering.  Getting into the pig pasture was interesting, there is usually a very definable  line.   The smells like bacon when a pig touches it don’t get anywhere near electric fence.  The fence  is now under a shit ton of snow so one must grope along the side of the pig house with a 5 gallon pail of slop and find the end and step over.  Then there was the search for the feed tub.  It is a good size tub.  You could bathe a small child in it.  Nowhere to be seen, no lump in the snow either.  It was dark though.  So the shuffle began in snow up to the farmer’s steam hole, tripped on it the second time around and almost landed on the aforementioned very hot electric fence.  Never did find the water tub, just waited and filled the feed tub with water when the pigs were done eating their few slices short of a full slop pail breakfast.  Anastasia and Drizella made a very brief trip out to do their business, grab some slop and water and then back to bed for them. IMG_0135
While Miss Olive was being milked, snow was blowing in under a section of the eaves. just a little and with classical music playing, the girls munching quietly and those bits of snow sparkling like fairy dust it was almost magical.  Now if only the farmer could bippity bop the snow away.

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Cold: A Visual

Not a photo, but a descriptive from youngest son.

Youngest son goes out to the goat barn to gather a pail for the farmer.  He comes in and exclaims, “Mom, Olive farted and it is so cold her a$# steamed.”  Yup, it has been cold.

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Musings on making the best of life.

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