Spring is a busy time on the farm and this year even more so since we have added a baby to the farm. Below are some updates on all the hustle and bustle happening behind the scenes.
1. We added Quail to the farm. Read about it in THIS past post. We kept them in a kennel in the barn for a week like we were instructed and then we let them out in the barn. About three days later Farmer Ross picked one up and let it go outside. It flew all the way to neighbors and never came back. Then the rest followed suit and fifty bucks literally flew out the door. As for the babies we did lose one but the rest have grown their real feathers and are locked up in the chicken coop and we are being extra cautious to ensure they don’t get out too soon. After talking with some friends and googling “can quail free range” (something I ought to have done BEFORE letting Ross get the quail. I learned that quail typically only free range once, meaning they leave the nest and never come home. Lesson learned.
2. Deyton got her first farm equipment ride on the skid steer while we installed a new split rail fence. She loved it and was concentrating very hard on making sure all the post holes were prefect!
3. We had a couple of chick casualties over the week and one of the casualties was herbemeninger, the little black chick that our nanny’s daughter named and adored. Rather than break her little heart, we decided to replace her with another black chick and since you can’t just buy one, we bought four. We have a total of eight new baby chicks now.
4. We bought a new cow, Sparky. She is a red angus and is a very pretty girl. She was a local kid’s FFA project and hopefully will one day be a good starting project for Kate. She is halter trained and very friendly for a beef cow. She will be a long time resident of the farm and should give us lots of cute calves.
5. We held the annual 4H showmanship clinic at the farm for our Goat 4H club. Every year the club gets together and does a showmanship clinic before the spring youth fair. Showmanship clinics help the kids brush up on showing techniques. For example, the first lesson every showman has to learn is where to stand in relation to the judge. The basic rule of thumb is that you should never stand between the judge and the animal. The reason is that the judge should always have full view of the animal. For children to understand this they have to learn that they aren’t the only person in the room and they have to be aware of the judges needs. Just one example of how caring for and showing animals helps children develop really important life lessons they can’t get sitting in front of the TV.
6. We finished building our raised garden beds. We used a design I found online that saved money by using metal roofing rather than treated lumber. We were able to build four 6’x12′ beds for around $250. Since Farmer Ross is still recovering from his hernia surgery I got tasked with digging all the post holes and doing the heavy lifting. I could hardly move the next day, but I am super proud that I was able to be as helpful as I was. I am really excited to start planting and watching my hard work pay off. Stay tuned for a longer post about the beds soon.
7. Easter is coming and we are hosting a farm style Easter egg hunt on the farm so we have been getting ready for that and trying to tidy up the place after a long winter. The Easter egg hunt will be a good kick off to a very busy summer! I have been hoarding my eggs so that we have plenty for all of our egg-citing games (cheesey, I know)!