Thursday, May 21, 2009

Around the farm

The grapes are growing and the cattle are grazing.

The kittens are growing and starting to play.

The garden is growing.
The clothes are drying.

And this little guy is outside our window.

What a beautiful day!

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Little treasures

Look what we found!

It's tucked away nicely in a rose bush. I tiptoed back later and saw the Mother bird sitting on it. She hunkered down when she saw me so I didn't go any closer. These little eggs are about the size of a mini-cadbury chocolate egg....they're tiny!! I love all the little treasures we're finding around the farm (I'm not including the snake in my strawberry patch as one of those treasures though)!!

Friday, April 24, 2009

Kittens, Chickens and Fairies

I have a long list of things I need to get done IN the house but this gorgeous weather has kept us OUT of the house the past couple of days. So, instead of housework I've been playing!
We played with the kitties and let the Mommy cat out for some exercise.
We couldn't let the chickens and ducks miss out on this nice weather so they got to do some exploring.
We even had our lunch outside!
Since we had taken care of our animal friends, we decided to take care of our imaginary friends. I've been wanting to do this with Leah since I saw the idea last year. She was super excited about making a fairy house and couldn't wait to check the next day to see if a fairy had visited.
The whole time we were making it I kept imagining what it would be like to live in the tiny little house.....use acorn caps as cups, leaves as blankets, dandelion pillows, pebble walkways. I always wanted to be a Smurf or one of the Littles when I was a kid so I guess it makes sense that now I want to be a fairy so I can live in our little fairy house.

We hope you are enjoying Spring too!! If you need a pick-me-up.....go outside, play with some animals, eat a bologna sandwich on white bread, and make a fairy house. It will instantly make you happy!!

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Kittens - the definition of cute!

A few weeks ago, I mentioned that our cat was pregnant. This is one of the farm cats that we inherited when we bought this farm so not exactly a tame cat. No one even lived here for 6 months before we bought it so these cats are true survivors and ran every time we walked out the door. I have slowly gotten the female cat tamed down a bit by feeding them our scraps (no garbage disposal) and could give her a pat or two while dumping the scraps into the pan.

We knew she was close to having her kittens but thought she would probably have them out in the barn and then we'd never get a chance to play with them and tame them down. That was, of course, if the tomcat didn't get them first.

Leah and I were walking in the back door this past Thursday and happened to see the mother cat under the back steps. Upon closer examination we saw that she had 4 kittens! We were SO excited (that is a complete understatement by the way)! My excitement immediately turned into panic when I realized that her nest was not exactly in a safe place. Her and the tomcat curl up under those steps and sleep all.the.time. What was she thinking?!?!? Didn't she know her "partner" didn't care that he was the father of those babies and would kill them as soon as he found them.....all he wanted was for her to come back into heat so he could....ya know. Sick isn't it? I tell ya, even male cats have one track minds.

As it turns out, she actually did a pretty smart thing. She must have known that a do-gooder (that's what Jason is calling me now) was living here now. He's just as guilty as I am though because he suggested moving her into our utility room until we could get her a safe place outside. An important side note here is that Jason is very allergic to cats. So, I managed to somehow lure this half-wild mother cat with newborn kittens into our house. I am still amazed at how easy it was and that I didn't end up scratched from head to toe. It really didn't take long for her to settle in either. We left her alone most of the time.....checking in now and then to give her food/water and make sure she was using the litter box (yeah, that was pretty important too!).

Here's where the story gets crazy. Saturday morning I give her some fresh food so she got out of her box to eat. I glance down at the mound of kittens and think to myself "Wow...they've really grown." Then I start counting heads......1, 2, 3, 4.......5, 6. What??? 1, 2, 3, 4.....5, 6!!! She had 2 more kittens about 24-36 hours after the first four. I immediately got on the internet and found out that cats can, in fact, stop their labor if they get disturbed. I think that is amazing!!

We had her in the house from Thursday evening until Sunday afternoon. Jason built an awesome hutch to keep her and the kittens in until they will be safe from the tomcat.
She seems pretty happy in her new setup and has become pretty tame too. She lets us pet her and the kittens and purrs very loudly as she curls up around her babies. It's so precious. I'm pretty sure if you looked up the definition of'd find a picture of a kitten!!
I haven't taken any pictures since the last two were born so this is just the four. I'm sure you'll be seeing plenty of kitten pictures so there's plenty of time for the last two to get some coverage!

Friday, April 10, 2009

Who says kids shouldn't watch TV?!?!

I know there are a lot of people out there who say you shouldn't let young children watch very much TV. Before I had children, I swore I would not allow mine to watch much, if any, TV. Things have changed. (Come on....why would they have PBS kids or channels like Noggin if we aren't supposed to let our kids watch it?!?) I am going to admit right here that my child gets more than the recommended 2 hours/day of TV. I'm not saying that's ALL she does EVERY DAY....there are days that she watches quite a bit but there are days she doesn't watch any. Depends on what we've got going on.

She LOVES infomercials and has come to get me multiple times to watch something that she thinks I really need.....the topsy-turvy tomato plant is the latest one. She'll make me watch the whole thing and will glance my way to see if I'm as impressed as she is. "Look Mom.....they're going to double your offer!!" Then she'll repeat things like "Isn't that amazing?" Let's see....she thinks we need the topsy-turvy tomato, Aqua Globes and anything the oxy-clean man is selling.

Lately, all she wants to watch is Animal Planet. She'll come running, yelling "Mommy, tonight at 10/9 central Crocodile Blues is going to be on!" (Her mind is a sponge I tell ya.) Today she's watching a show about Orangutans....she just came to tell me a little bit about it...

"Mommy, some of the bigger mean monkeys are watching the babies. But they aren't mean to the babies."

"Oh...why are they mean? Are they mean to other grown up monkeys?"

"Yes, they are protecting the babies from the other mean monkeys. They are just being the babysitters for the exhausted mothers."

"Really? Do you know what exhausted means?"

"Yes, it means (throwing her arm up with the back of her hand at her forehead and throwing her head back) SO tired."

As I'm typing this, she came to ask me what fascinated means. See....we're having a vocabulary lesson here!

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Spring is here.....I think!

I'm sitting here at the table on March 28 looking out the window at sleet & snow falling. We were just planting garden last weekend!! I love Spring. In fact, it's become my favorite season. I used to love Fall, but Spring is my new favorite. Spring is everything new and fresh...buds popping out on trees, flowers peaking up through the ground, all kinds of babies are born. It's a happy season!! We've had several calves born, our cat is round with life inside her and we have some other babies we've been raising in the house...
These first chicks (3 Rhode Island Reds & 3 Barred Rocks) were already about a week old when we got them.

The second group (6 Buff Orpingtons) were day old chicks when we got them. Needless to say, they have gotten very spoiled! One in particular is very friendly and wants to be held ALL.THE.TIME! Leah named her Seedsy...because birds like to eat seeds. OK!

This picture is what the first group looks like now. They have been moved out to the chicken coop and I think they were happy to stretch their wings!

The newest babies around here are these little guys (or girls).

Ducks were the first thing on Leah's list that she wanted when we moved to a farm. Mom called last week and said the feed store had baby ducks and she was bringing some to Leah. Aren't they cute?! Just look at those feet! Do you notice how they are looking at the camera in the last picture? That is about as much "love" you'll get from these guys. They DO NOT want to be held. I don't know if we just missed the imprinting stage or if ducks just aren't cuddly....but they aren't going to be lap ducks. That's probably better anyway because they are poop machines! They have already been moved out to the chicken coop (with a heat lamp of course) because I couldn't stand the mess anymore. I kept complaining about how much water they were splashing out of the waterer and Jason said "They are ducks you know." So, they are doing their duck thing outside now! I threw down a few extra wood chips and lowered the heat lamps a bit this morning...'cause ducky it's cold outside!

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Our farmhouse remodel

Well, well, has been awhile since I've been here. Several times I have thought about doing this post but I was hoping to have pictures of our house all finished WITH our furnishings in it. We do have our furniture in and are living here but I'm not ready for pictures yet (too much stuff still laying around). So, I'll show you some before and after pictures but you'll have to wait for the final pics. These pictures were taken prior to getting new flooring so ignore the floors....they look MUCH, MUCH better now!
This is the living room before we did anything.

I am now realizing that I haven't taken any after pictures of the living room...oops! Basically, it got paint and flooring....nothing major. You can see it in a later post with furnishings.
This is what Leah's room looked like when we got it. Several layers of wallpaper covered with bright yellow paint and some hideous carpet. Leah's idea was to paint it pink but keep the carpet...yeah, right Leah!

She dressed herself this day!
Her room needed a new ceiling,

and got the perfect shade of pink on the walls (one wall had to have new sheet rock and the other three walls were completely skim-coated over old, bumpy, rough plaster). This room took the most time by far, but Daddy wanted Leah to be happy in her new house!

This is in the kitchen (before).

This is that same area after. It has since been painted and crown molding added.

The biggest transformation was in the dining room. Here it is before.
This is looking from the dining room into the living room.

All of the old plaster was torn down...very messy.

New sheet rock was put up.

The existing window was replaced with a bigger picture window.

Here is the dining room after...

beadboard, crown molding and new trim was added....then painted.

That's the big picture of what we did. There are still some things to be done and eventually we'll do something to the kitchen and utility room. It's pretty small but it's home and we are loving it so far.