Wednesday, June 27, 2012


Exhausted. These days, it seems that we are in a constant state of exhaustion. Mark and the kids have been home for the summer, but I'm still working. The benefit to my job is that, for the most part, I can work from home. My job is flexible and I do a lot of computer work (unfortunately, my computer was out of commission for a few days) - so I've been playing catch up with all of my work stuff. I had an event this past weekend at the Dayton Dragon's Stadium - we handed out CFL bulbs (also part of my job) to all the fans as they left the stadium. We have another event that will take most of the day and night on Friday. Did I mention that we are expecting 90-100 degree heat over the next couple days?! Better be prepared with lots of water.
Around the's been about settling in and doctoring. Steve and Jester, our new CVM sheep are adjusting well. They made the trip from Pennsylvania to Ohio (nearly Indiana) - with flying colors. They get along with all the other animals (Mabel, of course, is letting them know who is boss). But we've had some health issues - just trying to figure out the best way to help these animals along. I'll admit that we are so new with all of this that there has been a lot of Googling, YouTubing and good old fashion call the vet. Our little Flora, the smaller dairy goat, has been suffering from a nasty cough - we had her on meds and it just wasn't doing the trick for her. We've wormed everyone (with injections and on a maintenance plan with herbal wormers) and nothing seemed to be working for her. When our vet came to check on Itty's broken leg, she had us order an antibiotic online. We got it and gave her a couple of shots of it. It seems that was working, but not quite enough. So we gave her another dose last night and tonight. I'm hoping that she'll finally kick this thing. Itty is doing well with her broken leg. Seems that the fear of bloat has completely subsided. She was pathetic at first...but in much better spirits and getting around really well. Her follow up appointment is next week and I'm hoping that she'll get her cast off and is back romping around the field with her friends. Steve, our black and white CVM, developed a limp on his left front leg, a day or so before we picked him up. There doesn't appear to anything wrong with his hoof...but I decided to give him a dose of antibiotic (Mark is the better shot giver here...I have a hard time, but he is amazing at it), I cleaned out his hoof with a bucket of soapy water and a soft toothbrush and after it was cleaned out, I gave it a good spray of hoof and heel. It seems that today his limp is a little better, I'll just keep an eye on it and mention it to the vet if he's still having issues next week. I feel more and more confident about our actions here. We are making decisions and standing by them in regards to our animals, our land, our family etc. It feels good to know that we have faced some issues with them and helped them get through. Although, at times, I feel like we are the farm of the misfit animals.
Tonight, we made chicken pot pie, from our potatoes, onions, and peas from our garden - we used my Nana's pie crust recipe and played with a pot pie recipe and it was delicious. It goes on the list of "we'll have to make this again".
Mark and I are doing better...and then we aren't. I guess that is just how life goes, ups and downs, goods and bads, better or worse. In seventeen years, this is our lowest of the low moments and I'm hoping that we will continue to find the strength to make it through.
Now I'm off to finish watching a movie with Mark and the kids and then to crash and burn in bed.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012


More to follow...but just wanted to let everyone know that Steve and Jester, our CVM Romeldale sheep, came to the farm yesterday. They are beautiful :-)

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Late in the Game

I keep seeing all these posts about what is coming up in people's gardens...Is it terrible that we JUST NOW put our seeds in the ground? We killed off all of our seedlings...the reality of time got to us. Between animals and barn and kids and life and work and issues...the seedlings now look like a terrible massacre happened.
Our neighbor SO kindly rototilled a huge space in our back yard - the sloped area that lays over our newly installed leach field area. I asked the health inspector if there was a reason we couldn't garden over that space and he said we'd only have to worry about the depth of the blades on the tiller - to make sure we didn't go too deep. Our space is approx. 28 ft. x 66 ft. Finally, today we made the time to plant seeds directly into the ground. We figured that we'd just plant and see what makes it.
We planted:
11 - Roma Tomato Plants
6 - Beefsteak Tomato Plants
6 - Cherry Tomato Plants
9 - Kidney Bean Plants
28 ft. rows of the following:
Pole Beans
50 ft. rows of the following:
Baby Carrots
Full Size Carrots
Cauliflower and Brocoli share a row
Brussel Sprouts
Black and Yellow Zucchini share a row
and 2 rows of Corn to follow (and hopefully a garden filled with vegetables will follow in the next couple months).

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Five Weeks

It's been five weeks since we got our dairy goats. Five amazing weeks. Miss Mabel is doing a great job - we have completely switched over to raw goat's milk (we don't pasteurize or homogenize)...and haven't bought a single drop of cow's milk. We drink it straight, made chevre, and use it to make the best mac-n-cheese ever. Eventually, we'll be making different kinds of cheeses, learn to separate the cream from the milk (for coffee creamer and butter?) and hopefully making soaps and lotions from the milk. We've been learning how to care for the animals and have already experienced so much. One of our angoras likely got her leg caught between the pen walls and snapped her leg in half (poor baby). She's now in a cast and stuck in her pen for three weeks, until we can RE-xray her. She's also coming down with a case of bloat, since she's not as mobile as she normally is. We've learned what to give her and how to massage her belly to get that gas moving. Due to our back and forth weather, our baby dairy goat has come down with a nasty respiratory cold. We are waiting for an antibiotic delivery for her (she's on one now, but it isn't strong enough to fight what she has). I feel like we've been thrown into the trenches and we're doing well. Monday we leave to pick up our sheep (two handsome fellas, CVM romeldales..."Jester" and "Steve") - we'll be adding them to our crew and that should be the last of the new additions this year. Next year...chickens and bees (if all goes well).
On a separate note, there have been some troubles on the home front. I feel like things are getting better between my husband and me...we have a long, bumpy road ahead of us, but we'll be ok.