Sunday, September 26, 2010

Friday, September 17, 2010

Pig Heaven


We finally got the hot wire fence up and working for the pigs. Now they have a nice luxurious place to root around. They have already eaten every acorn and hickory nut that had fallen onto the ground and just wait around hopefully for more manna from heaven. Lucky for them the trees in the pen are loaded this year.

They rooted around the entire perimeter of the fence as close as the could without getting shocked the first day and now the entire area is rooted up. They will have been in there a week tomorrow and haven't escaped so far. We stayed out there and waited until they had both gotten shocked a few times to make sure they wouldn't just bolt out of the thing, then Ruger came over to greet them and got the same treatment but on the other side of the fence.

So far it all seems to be working out. I finally dragged the trough and water bucket out from the dog pen they had been staying in the other day and now feeding and watering them is sooooooo much nicer. I don't have to schlep through the boot sucking muck anymore! Love that!

You can see the boy pig is significantly smaller than the girl pig. She's a HOSS. She is mean to that boy pig. She roots him around and rides him and bites his ears but we hope now that they have more space that he'll start catching up to her.

The last time we had pigs (which was also the FIRST time we had pigs) we had two boys and Bryon and Chris castrated them. This time we got a boy and a girl and Chris had the vet castrate him. Next time we think we just need two girls!

All I know is I am so ready for some sausage but it will probably be January again before we can butcher them. We'll take them to a local packing plant for the job. We can handle chickens and a deer from time to time if we HAVE to but that is such a big messy job. Until we have an outdoor kitchen of some sort (which we might someday) I saw take it to the packing plant.

Although I always worry as to whether after all our hard work with the animals that we are actually getting what we take in there. I just don't want to think about that too much.

On another note, my broilers are coming along nicely, this is week three for them. I should be ready to butcher them mid Oct. And my Buckeyes should start laying eggs in a couple more weeks. I am ready! I've only had to buy three dozen eggs so far but still, even the organic store bought eggs aren't the same. Bryon said the other day he wasn't eating another egg sandwich until we had our own eggs again.

I still have two roosters. One is dominant and crows a lot but I never can catch it crowing so I can't figure out which one it is. I want to keep the most dominant one, but until I can determine which one it is for sure, I guess I'll keep them both a while longer. One has a much redder head than the other so I THINK that might be the dominant one. I know turkey's get real red headed when they are "excited" and I figure these two guys are probably starting to feel sort of warm and tingly about things ;)

I've been letting them out in the evenings and unlike my previous laying hens, these guys, so far, will come running when I call and go right into the chicken yard so I can lock them back up. When I need to leave early, that is a big help. I hope they never wise up that they could hold out if they wanted to and I couldn't do a thing about it except wait until they go in. In this case, dumb birds are a blessing I think.

We got the garden all cleaned out last weekend and have planted some late lettuce and carrots. Some cantaloupes came up volunteer. I don't think they'll ever ripen before frost but we are just letting them grow just in case.

We also planted some winter wheat in our old garden plot out by the kennel. It's growing so fast though we are worried it will be done too early and we won't have a harvest off of it. We really have no idea what we are doing with it but hope to be able to harvest it and get enough flour from it to make some bread. We'll see. It's an experiment and it won't be easy to be successful at it but we figured it was worth a try.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Dolphin Diving

So, Wednesday I get a call from the school nurse about 10 am saying that Grace is fine but she told her teacher that she had a dolphin up her nose.

Nurse Cheryl took a look and sure enough, there it was. Grace is almost 6 so I figured we were pretty much home free on the whole, let's stick objects into our orifices thing. Turns out not so much.

I was in Springfield so Bryon went and picked her up and took her to the doctor's office for a dolphin extraction.

We still aren't sure we have the entire story but she wore a dolphin bracelet on Friday that broke so I'm pretty sure she stuck it up her nose then sometime.

We asked her if someone told her to do it or if it was her own idea. She claims it was her own idea. We've made so much fun of her, I don't think she'll do it again. Bryon has been calling her Fish Stick.

I told her that was almost as ridiculous as shooting a flare into the trampoline and burning a big hole in it (her Daddy) and if anyone in this family does something that ridiculous there will be ridicule.

Of course, then I had to explain what ridicule means.

Still.

Even the dolphin was laughing.

Armed and Dangerous



Bryon had his shoulder surgery a couple of weeks ago and is doing well with his rehab so far. He's not had much pain (so he says) and he only took his pain meds for the first two days and stopped because he didn't like feeling loopy.

He's by no means back to full capacity but he doesn't have to wear his sling all the time and can finally sleep for most of the night in bed again.

The bad news is he still snores and now I can't kick him and make him roll over because he can only sleep on one side. Oh the humanity!

He has found a few fringe benefits to his incapacity and talked Grace into buffing his nasty man feet. She actually got this for us for Christmas last year. I don't know whether to appreciate it as a thoughtful gift or as a condemnation on the appearance of our feet.

Bryon's the one with the grody hooves, just for the record.

Isn't it great to have willing slaves?

Date Night

I spent all last week in Rolla for one of four FOUR day blood drives this year at Missouri S&T. It was grueling but worthwhile since we saw 880 donors and collected 763 units of blood, thanks to the Student Council and the Greeks, right before the Labor Day weekend.

Bryon and Grace spent the week together at home and Thursday night he decided to take her out for a Date Night to The Cave, a restaurant in Richland that is actually inside a cave. They got all dressed up and had a fun night together. Apparently the restaurant staff had caught a bat right before they got there.

You don't see THAT everyday.

I, in the meantime, ate five meals in four days at Subway and read two trashy books about naughty Argonauts when I wasn't at the blood drive.

I came home late Friday night to a completely clean and tidy home, all the laundry caught up and fresh flowers in a vase on the table.

I have a nice family.

Pierced!

Grace has been asking to pierce her ears for a while. She wants to wear dangly earrings.

Who doesn't?

So a couple of weeks ago after church we were at Walmart and she asked if this was the place she could get them pierced. I told her it was. She asked if she could do it today!

We tracked down her Daddy and he agreed so she did it. There was only one lady working the jewelry counter that day so she had to do one at a time instead of simultaneous piercings.

Grace did great and she didn't even tear up.

I remember how much it hurt but she was determined to have them pierced.

She chose the "sparkly" earrings (no surprise) and hasn't had any problems with them. She's been cleaning them herself and taking good care of them so far.

I think she's home free and should be able to wear some dangly earrings by Christmas.

Maybe this year Santa will bring her earrings instead of so many socks.

I'm sure that would make her a lot happier.