Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Resting in Peace

I was reminded yesterday that I had not yet posted again about Doralee. Doralee passed the night after my initial post. It was getting cold out, so Christian put her up on a hay bale in the barn before he came in for dinner. That's where we found her the next day.

In another of a long list of acts demonstrating why he is simply one of the best persons in the entire universe, Christian buried Doralee in our pet cemetery on a cold, wet, ugly afternoon.

In another example of how I am not as wonderful, I took photos.

From inside the warm, dry house.

I thought now would be a good time to share the other permanent residents of Blue Heron Farm. Our much loved pets who have been laid to rest here.

Marley was Christian's first dog he had as a grownup and will always be his number one. Marley was a big, sweet love. She had a whacky internal clock that she employed to determine when it was time for breakfast. She shared the results by jumping up on the bed to stare at you, or -- if you didn't get the hint -- roll all over you. We are so glad Marley spent her last days at the farm. Though she had already slowed down a bit, she loved nothing more than running out to the pond and sniffing every inch of BHF.

Anton was my first grownup pet. I got him in college and toted him around the country as my life unfolded. He never complained, never freaked out - just rolled with it. He was that kind of cat. Even people who don't like cats liked Anton. He was way more "dog-like" than not. Anton lived to the ripe old age of 20. At least. We're not really sure since he was adopted for me as an adult. My brother picked out Anton and I'm still thankful he chose such an amazing little personality.

I got Vinnie to keep Anton company. Vinnie was way more cat-like than not. But as he got older, he came out of his shell. By the time we all moved in with Christian, you'd hardly know he spent his first 10 or 11 years afraid of pretty much everyone but me. He LOVED Christian. Vinnie actually passed on before we moved out here, but I had his ashes in a box, so they are out here next to his buddy Anton.

T. Boone Kittens
If you've been with the blog a while, you know about Boone. Sweet Boone. I still miss the little guy.

Maverick & Iceman
These guys aren't actually buried, but we have a little monument to them in the cemetery. Our first ducks. They were so much fun. Others have joined them. It's hard being a duck. :( But we still keep a few at all times. Ducks are great.

And of course, Doralee joined all of these guys last week.

Rest in peace, little buddies.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Binder update

Little Binder the Miracle Doe is just over three weeks old now. She is as strong as any other kid we've ever had here and cute? Forget about it. I've convinced Christian we should keep her.

But the thing is, you can't keep just one kid. She would get lonely. So we're keeping another doeling to be her pal while growing up.

This is not smart farming, people. Decisions should always be made with the brain and the calculator, not the heart and a pair of big gooey doe eyes. But dammit - I can't be the steel-hearted bosslady all of the time. Shoot, man - even Farmer Hoggett kept a pig he should have eaten. Of course, that pig did herd sheep. But I digress.

Here are Binder and her friend Penny Lane. I will declare right now and mean it that these are the only two kids we are going to raise this year. I am enjoying the heck out of them.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

You do the math


times the coefficient of THIS FRIDAY...

I just feel bad that Dory saw me unloading the car. Though, to be fair, I did warn him/her that bad behavior was not going to be an option at BHF. Making Christian his/her nemesis may not have been the wisest thing that turkey has ever done. As says the Dude, so says CEO guy...This aggression will not stand! We'll be having a party on Friday.

Friday, March 20, 2009

Extreme Cuteness Strikes Again

Our nieces are in Houston for their Spring Break. Today they came out to BHF with a little ducklings. These little peeps will grow up to be Mallards. They were given the names Woody, Star and Peep. And I am pretty sure - after a good half hour of drilling - that I know which is which.

...Until they start to feather out or otherwise change in any, infinitesimal way.

We'll keep them in the house for a few days, then it's out to a cage in the coop, "free range" in the coop and out into the wilds of BHF after they have feathered out. Love me some baby ducks. Thanks for the gift, Webers.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Go, Garden, Go!

Let's just start with --We're not THAT kind of farm.

We are on our third spring at Blue Heron Farm and my second with a garden. Other than the 400 pounds of cucumbers and google bushels of cayenne peppers last summer,I have yet to get very good at this gardening thing.

But I have vowed to try harder this year.

Back in early February, we constructed some raised beds/giant container gardens out of fencing that blew down during IKE. We filled the bottom with hay for drainage and the rest with two years worth of old, composted goat poo. Yay, home grown fertility!

I then bought whatever I found at the store without first checking in with my numerous farmer friends who ARE that kind of farmer, and planted a lot of stuff totally out of its season.


Some of the kinder, gentler farmers tried to give me hope that a few of my things might still grow and not to tear them out yet. So imagine my surprise when I picked my first snap pea today. They're growing! I'm doing it! I honestly do not have the same hope for my Brussels sprouts, though the plants look great today. I think the heat will probably kill them before they grow their veg.

I know many people grow their own gardens - even in the city. But honestly I am still in awe of and have total respect for every single person who can grow more food than weeds. I hope to join your ranks soon. Here are a few pics of how it's going.
snap peas

chinese cabbage


In the "too late" category, with the peas and broccoli, I also have Brussels sprouts.

In the "too early" category, I have green eggplants and snap beans.

In the "right on time" I have strawberries, tomatoes, basil, bell peppers and jalapenos. Go, garden, go!

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Doralee's Last Days

Doralee the Wonder Chicken has officially entered the sunset of her life. In the past few weeks she has slowed down a lot, lost a considerable amount meat from her old bones and has entirely lost her spark. We think the end will come quietly, and probably pretty soon.

We don't know how old Doralee is. She came to us in the spring of 2007 from Swede Farm. She was already an adult and had arrived to them, as such, years earlier. I'll have to see if they remember in which year they got her.

Doralee stopped laying eggs well over a year ago, but we didn't really care. We got a couple young egg layers and kept her (and her two mates) on as ambiance. We still fed her, and often in the air - where she used to love to jump to get fruits and veggies on offer. If you've been with the blog for awhile, you'll remember the cucumber overload last summer. Doralee's happiest days.

I considered euthanizing her, but we don't think she's suffering, so we'll just let nature take its course for now. She was a good chicken. I'm sure she'll end up in Chicken Heaven. Where I assume cucumbers are always in season.

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Monday, March 2, 2009

A couple days later...

With the help of a few of our FOFs (Thanks Brandi and LeeAnne!) we have narrowed down what happened to the deformed fetus and learned a lot about the condition it precipitated in Jakarta.

I took photos, but would never dream of posting them on the blog. They are shocking but in a way that is hard to describe, kind of comforting. Poor Jakarta never had a chance. Knowing that and looking at what was happening inside her makes me see Christian's ability to be brave when it counted and ability to do the right thing, no matter how hard, as nothing short of heroic.

If you are at all curious about the biology, google Hydrops Allantois and Anasarca. None of the articles I found had photos, but if you are squeamish, it still may be too much for you.

In good news, the doeling they rescued is doing well. She's a little fighter. We are calling her Binder, after our friend D'Ann who performed the c-section. We are eternally thankful for her experience and willingness to come over for the very worst thing that has ever happened at BHF. Little Binder is a sweetie.