Will probably not be blogging for a while. Dealing with some personal stuff, feeling rather fragile. Please pray for me, thank you.
Busy day for me as I had access to the truck, so went and picked up a ton of feed - 1,500 lbs whole corn and 500 lbs of ½ ½ soya bean meal and ground corn for the milk rations. They loaded it all in 19 bags, so each one was a little over 100lbs. Wish I could take the guys that loaded the truck at the mill, home to off-load. Dropped the milk ration down to the lower barn but was too exhausted and cold to climb down after them to put them in the drums in the feed room, so they're lying in a heap below the ladder. I had to stack all the whole corn so that the roller door could close and the tractor wasn't blocked in. Probably have to take the tractor out tomorrow to give a fresh bale to the beasties in my veggie garden.
Great success with my chips today. I previously peeled, cut and deep fried a whack of potatoes, but only the first fry. Then drained them and once cold, froze them on a cookie sheet and bagged the frozen chips so that they were all separate and popped the baggie into the freezer. Today I took out a portion and stuck them in the oven on a cookie tray while I made some cod with lemon juice and Asian frozen veggies. The chips were perfect :). Never tried them like this before, and didn't have a recipe to follow, so just winged it. Sort of a thumbed nose to McDonalds fries that have 18 ingredients. Mine had 2, potatoes and sunflower oil. Just sprinkled some salt on them and enjoyed the yumminess, no tomato sauce. Think I may have to do a whole lot and freeze them. Don't eat them often, but great to discover how well they turned out.
Think I got nearly 5-gallons of milk from the girls today, and no poop or pee in the milking stall, Miss Daisy May ! Yesterday for the camera she pooped twice and pee'd once. Uncivilised beast. But then 2 unusual men down in the milk parlour and a camera, suppose all the excitement got to her. Dolly was her usual calm self, such a good girl.
Expecting the temperature to drop to below zero in the next 3 days :(. Gave all the beasties a little corn this evening to keep them a little warmer.
As a result of the news broadcast, a guy contacted the reporter to ask if I'd sell a pair of White Chinese geese. Hell yes, he's coming to fetch them on Friday as a 22nd anniversary present for his wife. Lucky girl :) Also spoke to 2 people today about selling some Scottish Highland, but not successful with that yet.
Had my television debut today. Would have preferred not, actually, but felt it was the right thing to do to warn other people after the fraudulent e-filing if our tax return. I put a link to my FB page if anyone wants to see some farm scenes.
So that was what happened on the farm today.
Yesterday Madison, and her son, Benjamin, came to see our Scottish Highlands and how we do things here.
The thing about kids visited the farm that always amazes me is that they like the chickens best. Not the cute, curly lambs, or the soulful eyed calves, but the beady-eyed, poop-machine chickens that you can't even cuddle.
We entered the veggie garden for close-ups of the cows and horses. Little Red was in fine form, she even mock-attacked us ! While making noises I've not heard her make before.
They came down to the milk parlour to watch the girls being milked and Benjamin wanted to try warm milk so I scooped him some from the bucket, mum tried some too,then he said he wanted to try some cold milk, so I gave him a glass of cold. He loved it, first time they'd tried real milk directly from the source.
Jackie found a family to take some of Saturdays' milk. Forgot to remind her to tell them I didn't speak America. First time I called she put the phone down on me ! Called back - I'm the milk lady :). Met Vickie and her one son, Caleb, today. They only wanted one gallon as out of their 14 kids, the majority won't drink raw milk ! Wow. It amazes me how hard it is to give milk away.
Angie and John had their new granddaughter born today :). Congratulations to Katie and Adam :).
Yesterday I made a steak from one of our cows and salad. Today I roasted veggies, potato, sweet potato, fennel, onion, garlic and carrots, with rosemary, tarragon and olive oil, and made a white sauce over a cauliflower, served with half an avocado with balsamic vinegar in the pit hollow. Total yumminess.
Although rather cold here, things have been ticking over. The girls are great at milking, getting about 4-gallons every day and Daisy May hasn't pooped in the milking stall or lower barn for the last few days ! I think yanking her tail down while saying NO worked ! I'm amazed. Dolly now sees me as her calf, she lets her milk down for me, and when her grain is finished, she twists to look at me and licks my head when I'm close enough. I try stay out of licking range as it feels as if she's pulling my hair out of my skull. I could do without the water line freezing though.
Took Liquorice back to the other sheep, and Prince promptly jumped her again, so seemingly he didn't impregnate her before he broke her leg. If that's true, her lambs will only be born in June - very late.
My little bantam rooster that lived in the lower barn was cold and stiff this morning. They don't do well when they can't huddle with the other chickens. That tallies 3 dead chickens this week, the sick girl didn't make it, and one of the grayish boarded silkies was dead yesterday morning too. Hate losing chickens, makes me sad.
Have a new family getting our free milk on Saturday, I haven't met them, they're friends of Jackies, and have 6 kids. I'm so pleased that a family gets to enjoy our milk.
Found 2 eggs today. Actually caught one just as it was laid ! The black boarder hen was sort of twisted next to the fence, and I picked her up as I though she may have hurt, or frozen, a leg, and out popped an egg. Still warm and wet. The other was on the chicken house floor. The snow has stopped whichever hen was laying in the lower barn from getting there, so I've been keeping an eye out for random eggs.
Have a horrible suspicion that Anni is preggers. She's chunky. We will see.
I'm sort of stuck on the farm again and only get out once Herbie gets home with the truck, as my little Noddy won't make it up the snowy driveway. Went and fetched 2 bales of hay from Mike this afternoon, took the library DVDs back and withdrew money from the hole-in-the-wall at Speedway but didn't go to town to put it in our joint account. Still haven't received the new bank cards, so can only withdraw money from the new account at the credit union counter, can't even shop. Maybe they'll come tomorrow. Have received the cheques, and our first statement, just waiting for the cards.
The storm has passed and we have over a foot of snow with banks of over 3 feet in places. But the sun was shining. Was 10 degrees outside when I started the chores. Gave the ducks and geese clean water, funny to watch a goose standing in a small container of water :) while ducking, doing an air bath.
Found an egg in the chicken house, but not in the lower barn this morning. My intrepid hen didn't do the long trip in snow deeper than she is high ! Bought a dozen eggs at Wally World today. Was amazed to see their pricing of $4.39 / dozen for cage free eggs. Wow, I sell our free-range eggs for $2.50 - nearly ½ of the store prices. No wonder my eggs are in such high demand. Also saw that skim milk was $5.69. Skim ! Food prices are sooo high ! We don't buy dairy or meat, and yet our food bills seem astronomical. Don't know how people survive who don't have the farm supplied food we have. OK, it's lots of physical work, but I know it's healthy, non-GMO food.
Received our cheque for the sheep today - sold at average prices but after the replacement alternator we are actually in a hole with the deal :(. Would have been cheaper to keep them.
Talking to someone about selling 2 bull calves, Shaw and Larry. Planning on keeping Parrot to impregnate Daisy May and Star, and then sell him or butcher him. Then considering keeping ½ of Big Red for our freezer and selling the other half. Then moving to AI-ing our cows in future, just keeping all boy calves for selling or meat after weaning.
Have a new routine in place for milking. Keep the pulsator in the house as leaving it in the cold means it won't work. So there is an additional 3 trips through the tunnel every day. After milking today also brought the oval loop into the house as there was a chunk of ice in it that blocks the air flow. So tired of this cold. But still think the actual snow is pretty. Plus, I haven't fallen ..... yet ! Can feel my arm again, tipping the large water buckets out for the animals may be a little too much.