“A day in the country is worth a month in town”Christina Rossetti

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Jacob Alexander

It was an extra long wait and apparently our new grandson used his time well, growing into a 9 pound 3 ounce, 21 inch big baby, and finally arriving at 11:02 PM, December 4th.. We do not have big babies in our family, and this big guy surprised even the professionals. They couldn't figure out where Kristin had tucked this child. A 7 1/2 lb baby was the call just that morning.

Jacob gave the hospital staff a few scares, and we all have to be thankful for the staff AND technology that brings these babies safely into our welcoming arms. I had made the drive just in time to be there as everyone went into surgery, but before I could even get to the labor area, my joy and anticipation was tempered with a hard slap of reality. As the labor room door opened, the first thing I saw was a crying woman. She was around my age, and the tears were not tears of joy. She was on the phone, but I didn't even need to hear the words. The baby had been delivered still born. I cannot imagine the pain.

We are so lucky and grateful to have Jacob Alexander - named from his parents' middle names - coming home.

Sunday, December 2, 2012


Or maybe excited.
We are in the waiting game for our first grandchild.
Due date - last week!
I thought I'd resolved the photo issue.
Apparently not.
So it will be the written word only till I figure it out. 
Sorry to disappoint (if I am!).

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Trying To Be Thankful!

For three days I've been attempting to clean out my files so that I can somehow make room for more photographs of our splendid Thanksgiving feast and family gathering. Its just not working.
An email to Google and perhaps something will change shortly. 

Just here to say that I apologize for not attending to my blogging duties, but I do have events recorded and someday soon, a whole glut of visuals will appear!

Hope your Thanksgiving was not too stressful, hanging out with all those people who knew you since birth! 

My food consumption was moderate, so I feel pretty good about not sizing up in my jeans!!

The cold and white weather has returned. Its really winter I believe. Stay warm all!

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Goats On Pasture

I know that the goats on pasture is nothing new here, but after the ten dismal days of Sandy, it felt new.
Smiling Speckles
This past week, their personalities are starting to show through again with their cozying and curiosity, when I spend time in the field with them.
Post Sandy gloom and rain had them hunkered in the sheds way too much, and hay was becoming a larger staple in the evening meal.
Brianna at six months old
Now with the newest rotation, they would likely burst with more hay.
As a matter of fact, I had one close call on Election Day with a bit of bloat, but a couple hours of attention with baking soda "shots"(oral), and the crisis passed.
I think Vinegar, here in the background of her first daughter Twee, got into something the third day they were in the corral. She came into the barn looking five months pregnant(that's full term for those new here), but luckily was not foaming at the mouth. After that day, the girls ended their corral clean up.
 VIDEO of the goats at breakfast
Today I took a walk in the lower field, partly to inspect the fences, and partly to get the girls to the far end of the field.
When all else fails, I am the leader and they easily follow. They'd still be by the barn, had I not led them today. Its an important job, being the Herd Queen!
And here they have two acres of pasture, but four of them have to try and eat from the same square foot.  Herd mentality.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012


 One single, battered, daisy in the field.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Sunshine and Shadow


As you can see, I can't get out of my own shadow's way. And so the shadow pictures started.

No gloves. No hat.
Okay, a hoodie and vest, but the sun is out and the sky is blue, and I can see my shadow.

Absence Of Light/Memory of Color

Its been eight or nine days since the sun shone here, and Sandy left us in a severe, gray gloom for half of it.
I found a gorgeous collection of photos I took while Ligonier was preparing for Fort Ligonier Days last month. 
Here are a few bits of blue sky and Fall color to raise some East Coast spirits. 

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Hurricane Sandy

Just a  quick hello from me and residents at On the Pond Farm.  Since half the country was affected by Hurricane Sandy, I am thinking about many friends in its path and worry about their lives and homes.

Sandy has passed here for the most part, and we are safe and well. Around us there is severe flooding, but we are located high enough not to suffer any water in the wrong places (although the goats have something to say about that).
Dave in full rain gear and unhappy goats in their sheds.
The goats were very happy to have a barn with hay offerings the past couple of days, as the outdoors was so wet, sleety and snowy. The springs that feed our barn and garden were MORE than flowing. One spring became quite a river along one fence line and cause the goats to have to go over or through the raging water - choices they absolutely hate. Time outside was shorter than usual and indoor recess was prescribed as the precipitation just got heavier and whiter. There were rumblings in the barn of taking the first truck to Arizona if this kept up. A few handfuls of corn treats calmed the mutiny.

Wrong door.
But its dry here!

The silly chickens kept sneaking out of the barn, and then couldn't sneak in. They spent time pecking under the bushes and firs(and the porch), but when it was time to sneak back into the barn, their feathers were too saturated to fly up onto the half barn door and get back in. We had to get them in early too, before they started suffering some sort of chicken affliction. Do chickens get colds? A little shaking and feather fluffing, much like a dog, and they all seemed back to normal.

Jock's only complaint was the severe lightning at one point, and that he didn't get out enough. The cold weather is his style, no matter that its wet. He loves diving in the raging stream that the goats hate. He tackles clumps of dirt and whips them around, and is an absolute happy mess! Rolling in the first sleet of the year was another bonus.

And what was I doing while all this was going on, aside from filling up water jugs and lining up candles. Where are more storm pictures? I was doing my colonoscopy prep(Yeah! Too much information, but...!), praying it wasn't for naught if the hospital lost power!! What timing! Then the worry was, could we get to the hospital because of the flooding. We were down to one entry/exit and we made it safely. Procedure done. All is well!

Thinking of all of you and hope you are well and safe, although I'm sure some were not so lucky. I know we all hope power and help is on the way.

Friday, October 26, 2012

Sheffield Pink/Beautiful Morning

 It is too gorgeous of a day to be here at the computer, so here is a quick treat.
The last bloomers.

My Sheffield Pink Geraniums.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

I think I'm Down A Chicken (with Update)

I came home from an appointment this morning to see this in the yard.
I drove the truck up to the pond to see if I could see anything from there, but no.
Two head counts of the hens, only came up to seven.
Not looking good.
The fox? A hawk? Stray dog? Hmm!
Four hours later, after calling the hens and feeding them bread twice(a treat usually reserved for the fish), we were back to eight hens. I finally saw Number Eight hiding under a bush. I think she was roosting in the large juniper on the island, recovering from perhaps being attacked. I can't say I see any signs of injury, but those feathers hide a lot.

I guess the other hens talked her back down! It was too nice a day to hide, and not come out and play, now that I was around to protect them!

All's well here on the farm!

Friday, October 19, 2012

Seattle Has A Goat

That's what Zola is now.
A horse's "pet" goat.
She isn't trying to bite anyone here.
That's just a big, lazy yawn.
These two share hay and space and naps.
They also share Kristin.
  The fit was perfect for everyone.
Seattle sleeps better and has someone to nap with.
Zola apparently attempts a little trotting after Seattle, but keeping up doesn't last.
Seattle is 27 and has been with Kristin since she was a kid.
I think the companionship will give both animals a content life together.
The little nieces love her, and Zola -now Zoe- loves everyone back.
A mellow gal in her early retirement.

Monday, October 15, 2012

Drinking Chickens

If you've been around chickens, you know they drink water anywhere, and the dirtier the better. Well that may not be true, but its seems that way.
Water on the dirt barn floor is as greedily drunk as clean water out of a bucket. And speaking of drinking out of a bucket, the hens gave a demo to show you how its done. Quite laborious actually. 
Listen for those cute swallow sounds!

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Red Fox Sighting (Its Been A While)

The dog and cats and I had just come down from a nice walk, after checking on the goats by the pond.
I had my camera in hand looking for more fall loveliness, when I thought I saw a neighbor's cat on the newly mowed hill.
The gang followed me back for a better look, as I saw a bit of red, and we don't know any red cats.
Yes. Of course. It was a fox.
It watched us as we got closer, and Jock couldn't see over the remaining tall hay to think about giving chase. I said "fox", and he knows the word, and his ears went up. He scanned the hill, but the fox started to move before we got much further.
Here is the clip of him going back up the hill toward the woods.
And you are thinking I am mean to want Jock to give chase. Not true. I am protecting my hens. I don't think the fox would bother the goats unless it was kidding season. I just want the fox to stay on his half of the farm, and let me have my half.

Saturday, October 13, 2012

More Hill Clean Up

 Can you tell how smushed and eaten everything is getting?
 There are still a lot of thorny brambles and roses to go, and this corner is quite thick.
 MORE VIDEO of the goats at work.
After last nights frost, I waited a little to let the ice melt before we came to the hill to eat. Always worried about bloat with the first frozen field of Fall.
 The goats are definitely making headway with all sorts of paths on the hill.
Its still quite thick and high at the top.
No worries about running out of browse yet.
The leaves came tumbling off the trees this morning.
See the fresh pile on the tree line?
THAT is Fall!