It is a cold clear starry night. I just came in from doing night chores and it is about zero out. I tossed everyone hay, filled waterers and closed everyone in for the night. The does have such a nice space now. The three senior does are in one eight by ten pen and our yearling and two doelings are in the other, so that I may milk in the morning. The dirt floor, low ceiling and super insulated walls are keeping their stalls warm and draft free. We haven't hung any lighting or supplied any heat source yet and so far there is no need. Their old stall was a third the size, but since the floor was wood and off the ground and the walls less insulated, the stall had more of a need for supplemental heat even though their bodies heated up the space fairly well.
In case you've been wondering where I've been, we've been on vacation. I started a post about our trip but it is rather long and needs some editing and pictures. We flew to Florida for a family reunion and then made our way up the east coast until we got to Maine where we visited my grandparents and enjoyed some unseasonably warm sunny weather. We just got back in time for a couple days of nonstop snow fall. I'm finally feeling ready for winter and enjoying the freshly fallen snow, we've gotten at least five inches since we've been home. The temperatures have felt rather balmy, in the teens and twenties, but they are dropping fast. I hear we are suppose to get down to twenty below zero for the next week. I'm all of a sudden not feeling so ready, wait for it, brace yourself. Ah. Well, some heat lamps might be in order after all.
Other than that I've been enjoying being home. I've made a lot of yummy food in the last couple days. Today I started a batch of rolls, made a carrot beet soup, cooked up a large squash for pies and managed to bake some salmon for dinner with rice and veggies for myself and the kids as Dustin was away at work. Yesterday I made some excellent carrot muffins and bread, lobster eggs benedict and lobster leek veggie soup with goat milk, (we brought home some picked lobster from Maine). My girlfriend had a baby girl on the third while we were away. I visited her yesterday and we are headed over for dinner tomorrow. She had a home-birth in her tub on the full moon. I will always be amazed at the power women can embrace in childbirth. I wonder if in my lifetime I will ever cease to long for another baby when I hold a new one in my arms... unlikely, chicks and goat kids just are not quite the same thing, although they may just have to suffice.
There are many things I forget over the course of the summer that come back to me this time of year. Every time I step outdoors I can't find words to describe the feeling of cold crisp silence that embraces my beating warm self. The feeling that only I exist. The stars shine and the moon is lit just for me. Extremes. Opposites. Leaving the warmth of the house behind me to trudge through the snow and up the hill with the smell of wood smoke lingering behind. Caring for the animals and knowing that they are settled for the night, I return to the house, warm and lit up, to the smells of food and comfort. I love how each makes me relish and crave the other, I love to be inside cooking and toasty warm and then to go out and come back, is just so, so satisfying.
The really, really big barn project
1 week ago