Monday, September 27, 2010

There's a Breath of Fall in the Air!

Fall is slowly making its way to Missouri, and it's bringing some odd things in it's pockets! Yesterday when Eddie locked up the barn for the night he didn't look to see who was where, since the chickens and turkeys usually go to their respective houses. The chickens have a bolt hole that we just close for the night, shoving a concrete block in place to keep it shut. the turkeys are in horse stalls with wire tops.

This morning when I opened the big door to the chicken house, I found one very distressed turkey hen! Poor Nancy got locked up on the wrong side for the night. I can't imagine how she got in there, as she won't fit through the bolt hole, and it is hard to imagine not noticing a full grown turkey hen strutting through the big door along side of you. But that is what must've happened.

Then to top it off, over on the Turkey side, I found Henry, the big cinnamon and white roo who has taken over "roo duty" for the two "orphaned" Serama hens . That leaves poor Sirkhan the White Sultan roo with no hens to call his own and a big potential roo fight in the offing. Hopefully we will have peace till spring when I might be able to track down a few extra hens to keep the peace.

Fall chores are pressing now, the big center section of the barn needs to be mucked out one more time before winter deep littering starts and I am still working on getting straw and hay in and put up, and it's really late for hay! It is hard to get someone to deliver just the twenty or so bales that we need for the winter, and the ten or so bales of straw extra don't seem to make much difference to the folks doing the delivery! ( psst! I need a little trailer!)

Another thing that this early fall brought with it was my first ever sinus infection. I didn't know what I had cooking up there in my widdle head, so I think I let it go to long. Sheesh - what a mess. It is clearing up now with antibiotics and the good help of the voodoo doc, but for a day or so there I was ready to tell Eddie to dig my hole!

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Woody and the Voodoo Doctor

I wanted to share with everyone that Woody had some very serious "lookers" yesterday. This is a great big deal because he has been with us for about a year, with no serious potential adoptors. I really like this family and hope they decide on Woody, but of course will be happy with what ever dog they pick because they are getting a dog from rescue. Some lucky dog ( maybe Woody!)is getting a great new home. A new home with the "voodoo" Doctor.

I have been looking for that exact sort of Doc for several years now, and even though a visit is probably not in the budget - I am going to make it fit in there because she ( the doc) does muscle testing ( I think the $20 word for it is applied kinesthesiology) and also some other techniques that have gotten me pain relief in the past. I go to sleep every night on a loveseat with a ton of pillows in order to be able to doze off for a while and I am hoping that better rest will make me less sluggish and maybe even get me back on the bike. Maybe improve my memory, to? OK maybe that is expecting to much even for a Voodoo doc!
Keep your fingers crossed for Woody!

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Good News, a Big Mess and New Resolutions

That is just part of the big mess over there in the corner. There are fleeces ( unwashed in the bag - eeeek!), stash, stash, more fleeces and, oh yeah, more stash. I have a whole room upstairs that looks like this, and a bathroom closet as well. My stash runneth over. So, the resolution is to make a list, clearly visible on the dry erase boards in the kitchen of several things to accomplish each week. It was going to be things to accomplish everyday - but hey, I am taking this whole productivity surge slowly at first - I don't want to sprain something! The next thing getting posted is: Wash Fleeces. Then: Stash Management! If an organised person is reading this wants to help me get organised, I can pay you in - you guessed it - stash!

The good news is that some stuff seems to be a little more settled down here. The barn is getting back to "normal" after the series of terror attacks. The hens are once again laying eggs. The Turkey hens are probably finished with egg laying for the fall and winter and I for one think they deserve a rest. Timber is settling in and crying for his mama a little less. The new black boys, Barney and Andy, are getting more and more friendly. In fact, they are asking for head scratches and nuzzling for feed - so that is some big time progress. The boys are the softest fleeces ever and I really want to shear them now - but I don't trust the weather, darn it!

I had some time to enjoy my little farmlett this weekend and found this little guy lost in the garage.

I was happy to relocate him to a friendlier environment, but he was so cute, I had to get a picture of him first. While I was on the front porch scouting a safe place for Mr. Snail, I saw this pretty thing.

Yep - that is a moth. On my screen door to the living room wherein we have: The Big Mess pictured up there at the top of the page. The Big Mess contains unwashed wool and other tasty forms of wool that moths love to eat. See? I really need help with my stash, and right quick, before that moth and all of her pretty friends come in and have a winters feast! I wish the color came through a little better, the dots on her wings are a really pretty bright blue.

I also got to see a Norwegian Fjord Horse just yesterday. My daughter is riding him in her therapuetic horsemanship and boy howdy is he a cutie patootie! I hope she likes him and continues to ride him this session so I can see him again. When the job situation picks up around here - riding lessons will be back on my "to do" list!
For now, I am off to a good nights sleep.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Misery Makes a Decision

This has been a crazy time and I couldn't write about it as happening fast, and making me too sad to write about it.

Petie Pie was the start of it all. The little stinker got into the barn by body slamming the door hard enough to bend the inside lock while I was in the barn. I caught him, but not before a few unsuccessful and very painful dirt dives and also not before he killed a beautiful Cochin Rooster.

After that I wanted him to be placed in another foster home - but no one had room so we changed the locks on the barn door and figured the barn pets were safe. But they were not. Several days later, Petie and another dog dug under the barnyard fence and killed four chickens and a turkey.

Petie went to another home. The other dog with him was placed in an adoptive home and I hoped things would settle down at Dogrush. And, for a few days, things did settle. I had time to decide/realise that I have way to much on my plate here. Fostering is wearing me out and making me bitter, where it once made me happy and seemed to give purpose to my life. SO: (big announcement here) Dogrush Ranch is closing it's doors to foster dogs. Returns, of course will always be welcome back and we will still have the dogs that we dog sit for, so I imagine that it will take a while for the dog population to decline here. But decline it will.

Then Cammie died. I can't tell you how headspinningly blindsided I was. I had an idea that he was feeling poorly, but he went out to the field with his buddies for three days in a row, then just didn't seem hungry at night. Well, he wasn't hungry because he was bloated and full of fluid. He had bladder stones and couldn't pee. This went on until he died.

Here is the worst part. It is a HORRIBLE way to die, and he never made a peep. The vet told me that usually sheep cry and scream and kick at their stomachs and are just miserable when this happens. In fact, after the necropsy ( I HAD to know what happened,) the vet seemed really upset with me b/c ( I think) he thought I let my beautiful sheepie boy suffer until he died. But, I didn't know and Cam didn't let on.

So, life goes on here at Dogrush, with (hopefully soon) fewer dogs and no more death for a while. I am not afraid of death, but I really have a hard time with causing it - even if only through ignorance or lack of experience or just plain making a mistake.

There is a lot of happy stuff to write about but I will save it for tomorrow - PROMISE!