Wednesday, May 26, 2010

More Adventures....

Nothing is ever boring here on the farm....
Yesterday is a good example.
Most of my long weekend dogs went home, so I had a few moments of leisure time. I decided to work on Reckless' new trick. A few weeks ago, I taught him to jump over Boom-boom's back. This time, I was going to teach him to weave in and out of Boom's legs. The easy part is teaching Reckless to weave... the hard part is getting Boom to stand still. I leaned down to reposition Boom, and Reckless decided to offer me his last trick... hopping over her back. Well, we both miscalculated, and WHAMO! He jumped/slammed right into my eye. It hurt like a sonofabitch. Holy, moly. I was determined not to cry, and am happy to report I succeeded in that.... but now I have the most lovely black eye you ever saw. I am embarrassed to go out in public. I had to go to the bank today, and I made sure I went first thing, before it got too busy. The nice tellers there and I had a real good laugh at myself, though! Now, I am trying to just hide out for a few days, until the swelling and colour fades a bit.

Then, to top it off, one of my daycare dogs got accidentally bit. One of the dogs got a bit over-excited, and his tooth snagged the others' side, and then his mom had to take him to the vet. I felt so bad.... nothing I could've done to prevent it, but it still sucks. Poor Pedro, he was crying and was so pitiful.

So, that's enough injuries around here to last for years. I had some near misses the last few days, too... my foot ended up in a hole, lucky it didn't twist or sprain, and I stepped on a rake. That was just stupid. I think the universe is trying to tell me to be more careful. I think I will listen.

Busy Days again

This is the first slow day I've had in weeks on the farm, and it is pouring rain out, so I've decided to take a break while I can... you never know when you may get another slow day again! Besides the dog boarding, I've been busy in the gardens, planting tomatoes, cucumbers, squash, melons, potatoes, etc. I made enough money this month to get another load of soil in, so I can really get going again. I am quite often out there at 9 pm, weeding, and killing slugs, and hoping everything will grow on time for my CSA shares. Which start next week.... my first lettuce planting got decimated by the slugs, and I am a bit worried about having enough ready for my CSA members. Thankfully I didn't sell a million shares! I'm glad I only did a few for my first year... gives me a much better idea of what I am doing. I have also sold 5 egg shares for this year... something I didn't expect! I have 29 more laying hens coming up, so maybe I will be able to sell a few more shares as time goes on. Anyway, my first few shares will be a bit skimpy. I talked to one of my members, and she said the shares she got last year from elsewhere was the same, so maybe I'll be all right. Won't be long until other things come along... my peas are starting to bloom, and the fava beans are also blooming, and I've replanted the lettuce and mesculin, and have a lovely crop of radishes coming along. Keep your fingers crossed for me! I am starting to build more garden beds, so I can plant more of everything, and also get started on a fall crop in June/July.

I had one of my favourite dog boarding clients tell me about Ruth Stout. She was a lady who gardened into her nineties, and never really worked in the garden. She just planted, and laid mulch around everything. She hadn't watered or hoed or dug the garden in 14 years. So, I am trying it out to an extent. I really like the idea of not having to water.... that would be a huge pressure relief in itself for the summer. Really, water is my biggest worry. Besides the slugs. I've got about 8 or so beds planted, and put hay and mulch around everything. Should keep everything toasty warm, and moist for the summer. I'll let you know how it goes!

RIP Frankie

I'm not certain what happened after my last post, but my dog boarding business exploded. I have been so busy, working 16 hour days, that I haven't even had time to update my blog!

A few weeks ago, Frankie the goat got ill. We are pretty certain he had a twisted gut, and there is nothing you can do about it. We gave him vegetable oil and baking soda, just in case it was just some sort of obstruction, hoping to pass whatever it was through, but nothing did any good. The naughtiest goat in the world passed away.
Katrina, who owns the horse and the ponies, came over several times to help me with him, to shoot stuff down his throat, in the hopes he would magically recover. When he died, she came over to help me bury him. Thus started a comedy of errors...

First, I think Katrina had a hard time accepting Frankie was dead. When I found him in the morning, he was in rigormortis. Stiff as a board. He was still in when she came to help me dig a big hole. She leaned over him, and poked him a bit. Looking up at me, she said " I think he's dead". Then, she poked some more. "Ya, I'm pretty sure he's dead". Then she grabbed a leg, and plopped him over. He was completely and totally STIFF. " I guess he's really dead". Meanwhile, even though I was super sad, I started laughing my head off. Katrina was in some serious denial.

Next, we tried to tie the goat to the horse, and have Review move him over to the hole. Frankie was a big goat, and quite heavy. At the time, it seemed like a good, sensible thing to do.
Review had other ideas.
Once we got Frankie hooked up, and Review felt the weight of him, he went ballistic. Bucking, and snorting and generally having a spaz. Katrina got knocked into the mud - she had mud from one end to another. I just ran away... I didn't want to get caught under those hooves! Fat lot of good I was! Katrina got Review under control, and I apologized to him, and we unhooked him, then worked together to drag him to the hole. We buried him under the trees, and said a few words. Frankie was way too young to die, and I really miss having him on the farm. He was quite the character, and amused me every day.

RIP Frankie

Sunday, May 2, 2010


Wow! Yesterday was my one year anniversary of being in business! The year has passed at record speed, there have been ups, there have been downs, but all in all, it's been an awesome, amazing year. The dog boarding biz is doing well, and I have many, many regular customers coming in. The market gardens and chickens are being launched this year, and so far, so good! As long as I can keep on top of that slug situation, I should be able to get some crops coming up in a few weeks. I have learned sooooo much about dogs, gardening, and farming this last year. I know I still have a long way to go in that area, though! I've started teaching dog training classes, and am surprisingly enjoying those, too. Who would have thought I would be teaching even just a year ago?! Boggles the mind!

It amazes me to think where my life has gone and how much it has changed in the last year or two. All in a good, positive direction. I am living my dream, and am getting closer and closer to making my entire living from my little farm.

Flooded Driveway

Flooded Driveway
Too much RAIN!