Saturday, January 29, 2011

First visit with my new babies!

I got to go visit my new baby goats a few days ago. They are about 2 1/2 weeks old now. Soooooo adorable! If you remember, my plan was to get 2 little girls, then next year breed them once and sell the babies, so that they will pay for themselves.

Things change so quickly on a farm.

I went to see Jody, the breeder of my Boer goats. She had already picked out two lovely little girls for me.

This is Lily and Star. Stargazer lilies are my favourite flower, so that's where they got their names. Are they not the cutest??!!

Anyway, back to the story... as Jody was showing me the girls, I spied the most beautiful little goat just in behind them. I kept looking at him, but telling myself... No, I want GIRLS. He was quite the stunner, though.
As Jody and I were talking, and playing with the babies, she pointed the little boy out that had caught my eye. She said he was WAY to gorgeous to neuter, so he was still intact. She was going to get just the right home for him, and if she couldn't find it, she would just keep him herself, he was so perfect. Then, she offered him to me! Really, I felt so honoured! Before she had finished, I said YES, of course. There was just something about that little guy... he just felt like he was mine, from the moment I saw him. So, my 2 little goats have turned into 3 little goats, and now a possible goat business. Jody is mentoring me and helping me in figuring out how to make money from goats. I was just planning on getting them to eat some grass and weeds... My, how things change!! Who knows... maybe this will be my ticket to helping me to make my living from the farm. Things do happen for a reason!

I haven't named him yet, but this is The Boy....

This is the little guy... he has a bit of an eye infection, so we gave him some medicine to fix it up. That's why his eyes are purple!

The boy and his brother... mine is the one with the dark head

The little guy being a brat....

Friday, January 28, 2011

Magic Rat

Well, my battle with the Rat continues. I am losing.... bigtime. I have three different types of traps out - 3 snaptraps, a live trap that a client loaned me, and a RatZapper. I have tried all different baits - peanut butter, raw dog food, canned catfood, my sandwich, and cheese. Miz Rat takes it all... and not a trap snapped anywhere! Seriously, this is one talented rat! Everytime I check my traps, I am amazed. I almost want to let her live, she's so smart.
Except for that chewing in my walls.... GRRRR. She hasn't woken me up much lately... until last night. I had to get up and bang on the wall, and open the cupboard and put some fresh bait in the RatZapper, in the hopes that this would either scare her away, or get her GONE. It succeded in scaring her.... for now.

I'm not really certain where to go from here. All I have done so far, is ensure the Rat is eating well, and getting nice and fat and healthy. Here is a picture of the lid of my flour container that she chewed. The container has now gone to tupperware heaven.

There was a rat party going on in this container...!

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Troubles with Vermin

Last week, as dawn was approaching, and I was letting the dogs out for a pee, I saw a rabbit. It is the first rabbit in my yard that I've seen since I moved in over 2 years ago. The dogs pretty much have kept them at bay, but I guess they are starting to come back at night. Now, I am excited to report (NOT!) that this year, I get to do battle with deer, slugs, AND rabbits. Oh, yippee.

Then, last nite, things took a turn for the worse. What could be worse than deer, rabbits, and slugs, you ask?
RATS. I discovered in my cupboard the other day that a rat had chewed through my tupperware containers, and had been having a party in my flour and sugar. With my new way of eating traditionally, I don't use these products much anymore, otherwise I would have noticed sooner.
The rats have come up from under the house. There is a little hole beside my hot water tank that they can come up through. Last nite, I temporarily blocked the hole with a piece of lumber and a stack of newspapers. I know they can chew through anything, but I thought it might hold them off for one nite.

I was kept awake ALL night by a rat chewing in my wall. I kept going and banging on the wall, hoping to scare it, but it only stopped for a minute or two, then resumed munching and tearing away. The dogs completely ignored it. Maybe they new it was in a place they wouldn't be able to catch it? Who knows.
Anyway, 5 am, and the chewing stops. All becomes quiet and peaceful, and I finally fell asleep.

Only to be wakened and hour or so later by squeaking in the wall. I'm pretty certain that damn rat had a bunch of babies in my wall, and what I heard her doing last nite was building her nest. Crap! So now, not only do I have a rat chewing my walls, and who knows what else, soon I will have a zillion rats chewing my walls!
I can't use poison, for if a dead rat is eaten by a dog, it will either get sick or die, too. I would normally use a humane trap, but I could only find them for mice, not for rats. So, I had to buy a snap trap today. Never used them. I had to get a lesson from some guy in the store, as even the lady at the counter couldn't tell me what to do!
Contrary to popular belief, rat traps aren't that easy to set without getting your fingers snapped off. Took me quite a while to figure it out and bait it with peanut butter. I unblocked the hole in the wall, and put the trap inside.
Now, I wait. I am so excited to think I might actually catch the momma rat. Then, I can look forward to a nest of baby rats rotting in my walls. Frickin' fantastic. I hope you hear the sarcasm dripping from this post...

Saturday, January 1, 2011

It's a Brave New Year

I'm not sure why, but I am super stoked about this year. It's going to be an awesome year, I can just feel it!! I started the new year out right... I got my new fancy car yesterday. Drove home with it just fine. Cost me a zillion or so dollars to fill it up. Ugh. Hope it lasts more than a moment or two! I will be really, really watching how much I use it, and how often.
I spent the morning putting up ads for my CSA shares. The next month or so I will be doing a big push to make sure I get lots sold. I have also warned my friend, Elliot, to get his greenhouses ready, as I am going to start seeding in Feb, and won't stop until Aug. I need to grow a lot of veggies this year. I have also filled out a form to join 'Cowichan Green Community' where they list all the local growers of fruit, veggies, etc, so people who are interested in buying local will find it easier. So far, it looks like I will be the only farm listed in Crofton. On my form, I put that I will be doing farmgate sales, starting June 1. This puts a lot of pressure on myself, to get a new fence and gate done, so customers can shop in my 'farmgate' store, but not get attacked by the boarding dogs. I questioned whether I should put this in, but I figure it will help to keep me from procrastinating. If it's out there for the world to see, I'd better get it done!! I am trying to do everything possible to make certain this is a stellar year for the gardens, so I can reach my lofty goals a bit sooner. It's gonna be a busy, busy year!

Flooded Driveway

Flooded Driveway
Too much RAIN!