Oh my goodness! What a summer this has been!
It’s been both exhausting in it’s business and quiet in it’s simple routine.
Every morning, we (make that me) are up between 5-5:30 with the sun to start the coffee.
(Oh~ blessed coffee. How I love thee.)
Then we’re off like a shot.
Usually it’s the flower beds and the garden first. It seems like the air becomes dry and brittle, blowing the moisture off of blooms and newly forming fruit before I realize. So watering and feeding the vegetation comes first, even before the cows. Even before my own children.
Amazingly enough, much of the vegetation that I thought was completely wiped out by the killing hail, has shown vigorous growth.
I’m not sure how much time we have before our first true frost. (Sometimes the first frost comes in the middle of August.) So we might not have any vegetables reach maturity before they are subjected to cold. But they are trying!
Some of the flower boxes were just enough under the eaves of the house to miss the hail entirely. I am very thankful for that! The pretty blooms really lift my spirits on these dog days.
After the gardens come the pigs.
These little fatties are not babies ANY MORE!
We are taking each of the spotted red ones to the fair next week. 2 weeks ago, they both weighed in at #199, just a bit light. So we have been pouring the food into them. And they are very happy to oblige! I can’t wait to see where we are at weigh in on Sunday. (It’s hard to get a clear picture of how large they really are while standing next to their behemoth mother! I’ll bet Willow weighs upwards of #600!)
I like to feed these guys as early as I can in the mornings and just at moon rise in the evenings. They seem to eat better in the cool of the day.
Swimming (or “mudding”?) in the mud hole that Willow made for her family is a favorite past time.
That- and eating-
Lastly but still by 7 am or so come the cows.
I’ve been supplementing Maisy with good grass/ alfalfa hay before putting her on pasture for the day in hopes that she will show a strong heat. She has not. Her cycles remain a mystery and I’m worried that we might not catch her in time for a 2017 spring/ summer calf. Apparently, that’s what happened last year and we ended up with Maggie born in December~ not the best time for a sweet little girl to be born in Montana.
Maggie is a strong, healthy calf. But I would prefer Maisy to calf her next baby out in the warm May sunshine on a green pasture instead of a drafty barn in the dark of winter. But for this to happen, we have to have a clear sign that she is cycling. Then the AI man with his loooong straw can come out to service our Maisy.
At almost 8 months, Maggie is a strong calf. Her mother lets her nurse just every now and again so she gets the benefit of both good grazing and momma’s milk. Lucky girl!
Though a bit opinionated when separated from Maisy, she still leads well and is generally an easy cow to be around.
That’s it for updates.
Now I must run out to gather the laundry on the line. It looks like it might rain.
Today’s count: 44 eggs, 2 gallons milk
Weather: A 40 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms after midnight. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 48. Calm wind becoming north northwest around 5 mph after midnight. A chance of showers, then showers likely and possibly a thunderstorm after noon. Mostly cloudy, with a high near 74. Light and variable wind becoming southeast 5 to 10 mph in the morning. Chance of precipitation is 60%.
Supper: Pepperoni pizza with Swiss chard for supper with home made Marinara sauce.