Thursday, December 27, 2012

Christmas pictures

My kids are at the stage where their cheesy grins and posing turn on for the camera - what can I say?
 The big white blob on the front of the tree is a needle felted angel that Noah made (ah, ornaments made by young children :)

 Our new addition looking a little more lived in.

 My first attempts at handmade needle felted ornaments.

Avery got a dollhouse for Christmas, which just so happens to be my dollhouse from childhood. Lots of old memories for me, rugs and quilts and furniture I'd made. Seashells from the coast packed into the trunk, stowed away oh so many years ago.

Look closely. Noah is wearing moccasins that I made, an elk skin vest that my dad made, and a leather quiver that my brother made. And that is his new youth wood long bow.

Noah trying out his new bow with my brother (skilled hunter) giving him just the right amount of suggestions.

Avery's new felted (knitted, fulled and needle felted) slippers. 

Wishing you all a late Happy Solstice and Merry Christmas, and an early Happy New Year. I don't know about you but I'm thinking it is time to relax and curl up with a good book or my first two seed catalogs. Time to take a short break from crafting. Time to reflect on the past year and all the wonderful lessons we've learned. I'm beginning to think of what I want to do differently in the garden. I've also been thinking of how to spend more time in the garden with the kids and less time in town or in the house. Today I started thinking that I'd like to have an open garden day, where we invite moms and kids up to the garden one day a week to visit while the kids run free. I'd even be up for watching kids while their mom's run short errands. I'm all about bribing moms to bring their kids to mine - homebody that I am.

As for right now, I am looking forward to making music with the kids this month. Avery has a new lap harp. I tuned it last night and played a couple songs. Something we can sing to together. I've also been wanting to write some short stories and poems together. What are you guys looking forward to having time for once the Holidays are behind us?

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Dark Day Pictures

I have been a mother for six and half years now. My existence before motherhood is blurry and vague, my adult years of carefree frolicking blend together with few defining events. Even since entering motherhood, I have thought of myself as so much more, a gardener, wanna be farmer, cook, baker, food lover, goat caretaker and cheese maker are a few at the top of my list and mother and wife have been intermingled among the rest of my passions. These days I feel like one word sums up my existence; mother. I know I should say wife is right in there as well, but as much as I like to think I am, and maybe I am; a loving, attentive wife, my husband is able to feed and care for himself, and he is often away doing his job, providing for our family. Whereas I am generally with the children every minute of every day from when they rise to when they fall asleep, and thus they direct the majority of my thoughts and actions.

So maybe you've noticed, my posts have been following my evolution as a mother. This past year I feel like I've evolved the most, realizing, (better late than never), that most of my interests will still be there when my children are grown. Not to say that much is changing, except for that feeling of desperation or urgency when it comes to planting, harvesting, preparing and creating. It has taken me a while to realize that preparing five course meals for company is not an o.k. goal to have when I have two little ones who would rather have my attention and don't do well when I'm in the kitchen all day. This last year has been a year of letting go and easing up for me. And somewhere in there I've realized that I'm just now putting my children first in my life, whereas before I was putting the health of our animals or our desire to live as self sufficiently as possible above my role as a mother.

Our family is entering into a complete new world of opportunities. We have left the days of babies and toddlers far behind. I haven't nursed a baby or washed diapers in two years. I'm enjoying uninterrupted nights of sleep more often than not. The kids are beginning to be a significant help when they wish to be. Tantrums are becoming rarer. It is an exciting time. I have been so busy trying to stay on top of the present that there has been little time for looking ahead. After several years of feeling always behind and struggling to just keep one step ahead of the kids, like have their next meal or snack prepped or planned, I'm finally having time to myself as well as time to get creative and seek out fun and adventure with the kids.

This past year we have joined a community of like minded parents and children, which has been so enriching, rewarding and inspiring. Our homesteading lifestyle keeps us in touch with our land and in harmony with the seasons. The Waldorf homeschooling community, inspires us to come together to celebrate this lifestyle. Celebrating year round and making each day special for our family by way of songs, stories, crafts, candles, special food and fellowship has been the missing thread from the tapestry that is our life. Here are some pictures from our dark days. I think they speak for themselves.

Note the goose quill from our own goose that Noah is writing with.
He chopped that himself! (at six and a half, with dad's supervision)

And I should be tying all those thoughts together for a nice tidy ending, but I'm all out of coherent umph, and I'm distracted by an untouched knitting project sitting beside me and thoughts of a novel I'm hoping to squeeze in before bedtime. So goodnight and best wishes for your darkest days wherever you are. 

Monday, December 10, 2012

Finding peace during the darkest days

In the mornings when I'm milking goats or walking my chore routine solo, I think of so many topics I want to write about and so many discussions and debates to begin; Selecting chicken breeds for cold climates; winter hardiness vs. behavior indoors and tolerating coop confinement, or perhaps, Are show goats being bred for production and looks at the expense of other significant traits such as easy kidding? Alas, by the end of the day, which is generally when I sneak in a few minutes of computer time, all I can come up with is what I've been doing daily; chores, lessons, crafts, food, snow removal....

I have fallen off my blog writing routine, and in case you are wondering what I've been doing instead, I can sum it up in one word: crafting. Yep, since early November I've been spending at least an hour and sometimes three, knitting or sewing, after the kids have gone to bed. And I'm pretty proud of myself as it means I've been doing a fairly decent job fighting off the constant urge to sit down and dive into the nearest novel. I often reward myself with some reading after my crafting quota has been filled, and this past week I fell of the wagon completely for a couple nights and did nothing but read, ahem, I read four novels and two novellas in the last ten days and that was without reading during the day, much:)

So what have I been making? Well, I am skin sewing my first pair of high top moccasins for Noah. The bead work just about killed me. I use to love beading and now I no longer have the patience for it, and it shows. But, I made it and am now close to finishing the sewing on the second one. They better fit!!! I have knitted Avery one slipper or "felt clog" and I'm starting second one tonight. After I felt and shape them I'm going to embroider a design on the top. I'm working on a couple other small knitting projects for family members which I cannot elaborate without spoiling surprises. During the day we've been wet felting and needle felting. A girlfriend stopped by with her basket of needle felted amanita mushroom ornaments, crocheted snowflakes and little pinecone acorn people which were all so lovely and special, that I went on an ornament making spree and tried my hardest to replicate them, pictures coming. I'm also hoping to get some wet felted/needle felted doll clothes, and simple toys; fruits, veggies, small dolls, made.

It can be challenging finding the right projects that the kids can do and enjoy each year. Even folding and cutting paper snowflakes can be hard for Avery, and I end up doing most the folding, and cutting... Noah has been doing some needle felting. Avery is big into beads, although only a fraction of our bead stash has big enough holes. I have to sit with her but she has made a couple necklaces for friends lately. She has also been doing some wet felting and is able to complete small projects on her own. She is going to be so crafty as she gets older, I can't wait. I can just see it now, us doing embroidery together, knitting and crocheting, weaving... I've been trying to get Noah to do some knitting and weaving, it is all about my timing.

So I have to brag about our dark winter days as they are just so beautiful and peaceful. We've had some cold weather and some warmer weather, the warm weather (above zero) brings with it snow, which fills out the nooks and crevices of the white Birch and makes for contrasting layers on the dark green spruce boughs. We are in hibernation mode, as much as I try to fight the later bed time, inevitably we are sleeping in and staying up later and later. So my mornings are flying by and by the time I've finished my chores it is often time to make lunch. Dustin is home all day every day this time of year. As he was working too much during the warm months to get our firewood stockpiled, he spends a couple hours a day outside hauling, sawing and splitting wood. He is just now taking a break from working on the house, as we were able to move in to our new quarters and are content with the almost finished rooms.

My favorite times of the day have been our meals which we've been eating all together, usually with the oil lantern or a candle lit on the table. The kids have been playing amazingly well for hours and hours each day, so well that I have to be determined to stick to our schedule and get our lessons done right after breakfast before the kids get down to play, otherwise I have a hard time getting them back up to do schoolwork. Then we've been water color painting, dipping candles, felting and crafting in the afternoons. We hollowed out gourds that we grew with rattle making in mind, but we failed to let them sit and cure for the year they needed to do so, oops. The kids play. I tidy and cook. Often they come join me after dinner for more wool work. I must say that my very favorite time of the day is when the kids have fallen asleep and I'm done being productive. I lay out a few yoga mats on top of each other and prop up some pillows and bean bags in front of the wood stove and lean back and put my feet up, and read. Add to that some hot buttered rum and homemade kettle corn  or a glass of red wine with crackers, goat cheese and olives, and well, I feel slightly glutinous.

 We have been going longer stints without going to the grocery store (about every two weeks) we've been trying to buy less. I've been having fun getting creative and trying to use what we have in the house. We've been eating lots of oatmeal or eggs in the morning, meat and vegetables at night.  We have an abundance of milk, goat cheese, eggs, meat and bulk grains and beans, potatoes, carrots, cabbages, beets, winter squash and frozen berries. We just finished up the last of our own onions, garlic and celery. When we go to the store at the top of the list is crackers for the goat cheese, spinach for fresh salads, apples or clementines and olives for our late night olive addiction.

Our meals have been pretty simple as I've been crafting late into the afternoon. I'm looking forward to our Christmas break where we are going to let go of all thoughts of lessons for a couple weeks, and I'm going to make elaborate meals, I'm thinking of cheese blintzes and bread pudding for breakfast and homemade noodle dishes and dumplings for dinner. So, now it is your turn. I'm looking forward to hearing about your crafts and what you guys are making for gifts or ornaments or what other special things you are doing with your family. Happy Dark Days. Happy early Solstice! And stay warm and let your light shine wherever you are!

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Medicine making and miscelaneous

Avery meeting her new cousin Atticus Ezra.

 Noah is learning to play the pentatonic flute.
I played the flute in Highschool and have enjoyed learning how to play this simple flute. I've been thinking of learning to play a string instrument; something I can play and sing to at the same time. I've been smitten with ideas of playing the banjo this month, we'll see.
Noah has been very interested in beading lately. He has just been stringing small glass beads onto beading string and making bracelets. After spending a few years of my childhood in a Yup'ik village, I use to do a lot of beading. I'm looking forward to doing some beading projects alongside Noah as he is ready. 

I have been getting really exited about a lot of Noah's recent interests as they align with past interests of mine. He is fascinated by Native American History and pretty much any Indian skills, such as weapon making, bow hunting, beading, tanning and skin sewing. On the way to the library he specifically requested that we pick up some NON- Fiction books about Indians or boys that lived in the past. He has loved the first two books in the Little House in the Prairie series. We just started the book, Sign of the Beaver. He is not huge into arts and music, but working with his interests I think we'll be experimenting with making quills for writing out of geese feathers and possibly making paper. I think we may be doing some skin sewing this winter as well. And I'm wondering if I might have the ambition to make a pair of small moccasins over the coming winter nights.

When I was in high school, I was part of an Inter tribal drum group. In College I danced with the University Eskimo dance group. I minored in history, with my favorite classes about Colonial America and Native American History. And I minored in Yup'ik Eskimo. All things I don't usually write about, but you can see why I might be excited about my son's current interests.

Switching Gears Completely because there is so much to share and I've been writing and posting so little... here are a couple pictures of our new addition which we will hopefully be living in by next month.

Both Pictures are of the living room which extends from our current living room. To the right are two bedrooms, a bathroom and someday stairs. Dustin is busy putting in light fixtures and staining trim and doors. The painting is finished and the flooring should be going in next week.

For the record, making sausage links out of fresh intestines from the pig went way smoother than using store bought preserved natural intestines- which was so much of a pain that I gave up last time.

Bacon below. The pig we had was not super big, nor did it have a lot of fat. So we have some pretty thin belly slices to work with, but they should start off some wicked Minestrone. I used a dry rub and cured them for six days and then smoked them for a couple hours over applewood chips at about ten degrees, does that count as cold smoking?

Yesterday I finally got around to straining my garden tinctures and oils from the summer's harvest. I have enough of most the medicines that I won't need to make those same ones next year.

Blurry but... here they are, re- used glass droppers with back up half pints and pints behind. Tinctures: Calendula, Plantain, St Johns Wort, Spilanthes, California Poppy
Glycerites for the kids: Spilanthes, and a combo; California Poppy, Chamomile and Catnip.
Oils: Calendula, St Johns Wort, Chamomile

I am most proud of the St Johns Wort and Spilanthes, as they can be tricky to grow here. This is probably the fifth year I've grown St Johns Wort and only the second time I've gotten it to bloom, and it didn't bloom until late September, just before a hard freeze. I have never used St Johns Wort as an anti depressent although that is it's most known use these days. Instead I've used it as a topical pain reliever and it is one of those treatments that has amazing and immediate results.

I think of Spilanthes as our replacement for Echinacea Purpurea as it does not grow well here and most likely will not come back as a perennial as it does most places. The Spilanthes is not a perennial either but it flowers the first summer. I use it as a short term immune booster as I would Echinacea. For the record, an herbalist friend told my after the fact that Spilanthes does not extract well in Glycerine. Since I've already done it, I figure it will be an experiment. A good reminder to do my research more thoroughly. I have given the kids tinctures before, straight or in tea, but I will feel better about giving them the glycerites, hopefully it is sweet enough and if it isn't, there is always honey.

I have comfrey and Elecampene - Inula root in the fridge that I dug after the ground was frozen solid :)
I'll be making an oil with the comfrey as I think I may have accidentally thrown out the last fresh roots oil I made - but I learned that it heals external wounds crazy fast. The oils I'll be using for lotions and salves. 

We are gliding into winter seamlessly, although there is forever so much to still do. Lotion and Lip balm making are at the top of my list as we are all drying out with the wood stove running non stop. Soap making so that soap will be ready by Christmas for gifts. Other gifts for Christmas, candles to dip, toys to make, knitting, felting... Then there are goats to butcher so that the feed bill will drop. 

I struggle with my need to accomplish tasks and with my children's need for me to be "in the now" with them. We are sticking to a stricter school schedule which takes up a good chunk of the day. Between lessons and farm chores it seems like I go around in circles just making food, doing dishes and tidying up, and then when I finally get a chance to tackle a project the kids want me to play Peter Pan with them - the nerve right? Ha. 

I'm trying to play more, listen better, but it is a job I could never look back on and say I did it as well as I could.  We can always give more, put more in to what is most important. Children can never have enough of our love, our time and attention. I have been slowly letting go of my need to do blank; pick cranberries before the frost, harvest every last plant in the garden before the snow falls. It just isn't worth stressing about to the point that I tend to do. Instead I try to sit and watch, laugh and play.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Zero degree day

As I passed the thermometer on my way to do chores this morning, it read a solid zero degrees. In a few months that will feel warm to us, but today it feels pretty chilly, chilly as in if I hadn't kept a brisk pace through my tossing hay, opening doors routine, I'd have needed to come back to the house and put a jacket on over my sweater and Carhartt bibs. There are certain things you just can't get away with when it is zero outside; such as setting jars of milk out the front door for a few hours, leaving eggs on the front porch for a day or two until I get around to taking them inside to the fridge, leaving any liquids outside whether that is bottles of water in the car or a tank of water in the back of the truck, and as I learned this weekend, if you leave a freshly butchered pig in the back of the pickup, not only will it freeze solid (as I expected), but it will also freeze to the truck bed (I had meant to take a tarp or sheet with me but forgot). Now said frozen pig is hanging on our front porch until author's brother has time to break it down.

On Saturday I stood around at a friend's and at least helped with the planning of how to kill their pigs, who were free range around the property pigs that were not pen -able, (gotta love that - and a word from my own dictionary), without losing the remaining pigs in the woods. There were a couple flawed plans at first that we managed to nix, such as having three men with three guns each shoot a pig at the exact same moment - yeah, recipe for hilarious chaos I'm sure. Finally we just distracted the pigs with scraps and the two remaining didn't blink an eye with their companion was shot and gutted nearby. These pigs were much smaller than our last pig that we helped butcher, I think a third or at least half as big. This pig is maybe in the hundred and twenty pound range. A nice, manageable size. I'm planning on brining and smoking the belly for bacon and the hams. I've already scraped and cleaned the upper intestines for stuffing with sausage. And I pulled the head in to thaw to make headcheese, ahem, pork terrine. I think I'm going to try my first attempt at salami, something I've never been up for since I don't want to use nitrates, but we'll see how it goes.

On Sunday we butchered our last two geese, after taking their mother to a friend's house so she can live another year in the company of other Tolouse Geese. In exchange, hopefully I'll receive a dozen fertile geese eggs in the spring. I put one in the freezer for Christmas and the other I think we'll eat this weekend. I've got a bag of organs and fat in the fridge to deal with still, I'm thinking stock for the necks, hearts, feet and gizzards. Not sure about the liver, pate? Usually I'd cook it with rice for dog food.

Lately I'm not sure which I look forward to more, weekdays or weekends, as the weekends are filled with chores that need to get done, but aren't very enjoyable. The weekdays have become very routine. And I'll have to write about what the kids and I have been doing another day as it is past time to wake up the kids and get us going before we get behind on our day. In a few words here are our weekdays; fire starting, breakfast, candle lighting, song time. math, break, lunch, reading and writing, possible craft or kitchen project - whew - down time, then dinner time. whew!

Thursday, October 18, 2012

The last of our Autumn pictures

Alas, these pictures are not recent. These are photos from August and September that I did not get a chance to share. Our world is white now. We have a few inches of snow, most likely here to say for oh, the next six months. We had our first snow a couple weeks ago - followed by a warm spell. About this time of year it doesn't tend to go away anymore. I cannot say that I am enjoying the snow with as much excitement and glee as the children. However, it is lovely coating the branches and sides of the tall bare birch trees. Today, the sun was shining through the glittery snow and woods. The woods and the view across the valley to the west as the sun was low in the sky was gorgeous. I'll have to get out and take some pictures while the sky is still blue and sunny. Dark days are coming fast. I'll fill you guys in soon about all that has been going on here. This weekend we are helping butcher pigs, followed by hopefully butchering our geese. Looking forward to bacon, sausage, lard, goose fat...

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Harvesting, mourning and celebrating

 A lesson in chicken anatomy, my son knows a chicken liver, lungs, heart and gizzard. He insisted in pulling out all the organs from each chicken we butchered - just twelve in all, averaging eight and half pounds each. (Not intentionally, just pure procrastination.)

We had about three days where the Birch trees were full and completely golden. A night of wind and now the woods are bare and empty with only the occasional fully gowned tree bringing us to stop and ponder why it still has all it's leaves  I am a frantic squirrel gathering and stowing away, scrambling this way and that. My gathering and survival instincts are strong. I cannot go for a walk or just stand around and enjoy the beauty. Instead every walk is accompanied by a basket on my arm, gloves and my pocket knife or clippers, with me wondering what should be harvested next, Usnea or rose hips? Raspberry leaves or Dandelions? The past two weeks I gave up on carrying or hauling produce or herbs down from the garden and instead I drove the car up and down the hill, filled one day with cabbages, then comfrey tied in bundels, the next day; buckets of beets and carrots.

Dustin is on his sixteenth day straight of twelve hour shifts with an hour commute in each direction. I'm feeling like I've been a single mom for the last five months. The kids and I have had a challenging few weeks with me trying to do too much and they've been letting me know they need more attention.
I'm trying not to panic at everything that still needs to be done before the snow falls - we should have a few more weeks of bare ground, I hope.

 My winter squash, gourd and pumpkin harvest. Not impressive by most standards, but to see me gaze adoringly at my squash pile, you'd think I was gazing on a child I'd just birthed :)

Now for some sad news. We said goodbye to our faithful family dog of nine and a half years. Chana was an intuitive, gentle and hard working dog until the day she died. She was our first child. We think she had lymphoma or some sort of intestinal or stomach cancer. She went down hill quickly over the last couple months. The day we had her put down, I drove her up to the garden to sit in the sun, and took this picture. The kids spent the day writing and singing her songs. We buried her in a deep hole that Dustin spent a night digging, and we covered her with sweat peas and garden flowers. The kids and I have been visiting her and telling her about our days and what she has been missing. The house is strange and empty without her. It has been very sad to say goodbye.

We just celebrated Avery's fourth birthday. She had a fabulous day. We celebrated at the park with friends and family.

And that has been our September news. Harvesting, mourning death, celebrating life. Our days should be growing less eventful and we turn indoors and begin to relax and enjoy the fruits of our labors. We are just beginning lessons. I'm looking forward to have more time for crafts; knitting and felting, elaborate meals, learning with and from my children, reading and writing. What are you busy with and looking forward to?

Friday, August 24, 2012

Autumn Scramble

It is harvest time in the Interior. Low lying areas have had a few light frosts by now, enough that most zucchini, pumpkins and heat loving plants have succumbed - especially if they were not under cover. In the hills we are safe for a couple more weeks, but it is certainly time to begin the harvest, as much as we'd like to let everything just keep on growing. My bush beans, cucumbers and tomatoes were late this year and are just finally getting going. I'm hoping to make a couple batches of pickled dilly beans and pickled cucumbers over the next week or two. The peas have almost come to a complete halt, and so I should probably begin pulling vines and feeding them to the goats. One of my gardening weaknesses is spreading out the harvest. I just want to keep cutting broccoli side shoots and allow the cabbages and squash to grow bigger and bigger. And that is why I never get the compost worked in the fall - because before I know it the plants are frozen into the solid ground - oops.

This past weekend we took a short vacation. My doe who is due any day now is still due, maybe today? When we got back we killed off our bees :( and extracted honey. We had a very warm sticky kitchen and house for a night. Noah did most the cranking. I had to mop the floor the next morning before we even made breakfast, as it was so sticky to walk around. We are the proud owners of three and half gallons of our own honey - not a great yield or even a good yield, but I'll take it. My bees are still working on building their home; building wax onto their new frames - that's my excuse. I made some medicine this week with plants and weeds from the garden, tinctures of Callendula flowers, whole Spilanthes plants in bloom, whole Callifornia poppy plant and whole Plantain. We've been picking Callendula and Chamomile for tea and oil.

Our to do list is oh so long. It is the time of year where I need to harvest or put something up daily. At the top of the harvesting list are twelve very large crowing Cornish Cross (they've been on the list for a few weeks now.) I was planning on picking crab apples at a friend's today, for making applesauce - depending on how our doe is looking. The freezer is filling up, first blueberries, rhubarb and then raspberries. Next chicken followed by vegetables. It is time to make some lists so I don't go around in circles trying to figure out what to do first. The Golden leaves are falling. The Fireweed and ground plants are turning shades of red and brown. Are you guys feeling the autumn scramble?

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Final Summer days

I've just come in from morning chores and am savoring the final moments of silence before my children arise. This has been my week to finally begin waking up and milking goats while the kids sleep on. As a result I've had a wonderfully productive week and more serene mornings. The kids have enjoyed playing in the house all morning while I've been busting out in the kitchen. Yesterday the kids and I made strawberry rhubarb pastries with pie crust for breakfast. The morning before that we made zucchini bread following a carrot cake recipe, which I've decided I prefer to regular zucchini bread recipes. I enjoy a moist well spiced bread. I made jerky this week and it was one of my best batches yet. I didn't follow a recipe this time, just my instincts as I poured in soy sauce, grated garlic, salt, fresh ground pepper, brown sugar and red hot chili paste. I fear I didn't make enough to get us through our upcoming road trip, and horrors; I'm out of soy sauce, so I have to visit the store before I can make more.

We are enjoying a sunny week in the seventies and low eighties - most of us are overjoyed for another week of summer after having such crisp cool weather lately. Yesterday the kids and I went raspberry picking for the second time. I picked about five gallons the previous picking and canned eighteen pints of raspberry jam and put three gallon bags of frozen raspberries in the freezer. Afterwards we met with friends for a water play day at the park. The sunlight is not as strong as early summer. I've been outside in full sun daily from noon to five, slathering myself with coconut oil, and I've gotten some color - not nearly enough.

My "TO DO" List is so long. Trying to decide what to do and what to put off seems crucial. We were going to butcher the meat chickens this week so I wouldn't have to buy another bag of feed, but my husband has been out of town unexpectedly. The kids and I have been spending our afternoons around the house herding goats and guarding free ranging chickens. I am keeping on top of the weeds in the garden. Next on my list is medicine making. I have time to pull things but not the time to do things with them so I'm waiting till next week to make some tinctures and glycerites with california poppies, plantain, skullcap, spilanthes, callendula, lovage and catnip.

We are also keeping a close eye on Rose who is at day 141 of her gestation and is due on day 150, but tends to kid on day 146. She is in her own stall with full access to the outdoors. Up until the last couple days she has been getting out for walks with the rest of the herd, but I suspect she is pretty content lounging around now. Her movements are becoming awkward and slower than usual. Two years ago she kidded to three bucklings and last year she kidded to two doelings and a buckling but we lost the first doeling who was the only light red doeling we've gotten. Two doelings would be perfect. Calla Lilly, Calypso, Coriander, Callendula (Cally). Names that don't conform but I like, Candy, Claire, Coral. Rose is a veteran kidder. She has never needed help. After she kids however, I think she can be overwhelmed with three kids to look after and feed.

The woods are patched with yellow. It happened overnight. I comfort myself by feasting on all the green still in sight. Summer is drawing to a close here. Time to begin the scramble to stockpile and put away all that we can while we can still see it, catch it, pick or dig it.

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Summer pictures; goats, kids and geese

Rose, due August 24th. Fingers crossed for a nice doeling, preferably white or light red.

Bluebell meet Rosie Goose. The goose always wins.

My kids bonded with the wrong doeling this year, sigh. Looks like she is staying for now. At least she is well handled.

Zinnia and daughter Clary; the doeling I wish the kids had bonded with.

Garden Strawberries.