Wednesday, May 9, 2012


I'm horrible.  I didn't write a single blog for the month of April.  I could lie and tell you April was boring month with nothing to blog about.  That I was able to catch up on daytime TV, that the ranch ran on schedule with nothing to report.  I could tell you that we didn't have any babies born and that the chickens regularly popped out eggs. 

Well here's the truth:

About six months ago Randy Ram the handsome Mini Cheviot Sheep broke into the group of sheep that Boss Lady uses train dogs.  Handsome Randy stayed in the pasture with the working group for four or five days without being noticed.  I don't know how he did this.  I think he may have been using a secret knock and a creaky stairway to get in with the girls each night and then would return to his house on the hill by morning light.  However he slipped under the radar is a mystery.  Okay that's a lie too.  We saw him repeatedly pounding his hard head against what he thought was a weak point in the fence.  After several days of the human kind shrugging off his migraine induced behavior, the ovine made a breakthrough.   The result of Randy's persistence came five months later in the form of 11 mixed breed lambs all with Randy's head.  So I've spend the last month feeding bummer lambs.  About a month before his progeny showed up we sold Randy and his harem to a couple in Rocky Ford.  I do miss him but now I have a whole mess of little Randys to gawk at.
Gerri's kiddo Taylor came and snuggled a few of the bummers one afternoon.  

 Gerri and Taylor also took home PorkChop Goat so Taylor could ready him for fair this summer.  Since I hadn't communicated efficiently with Gerri about when to band his jewels, he went home intact.  Gerri had a short time to humanely separate PorkChop from his boys.  On the day of weigh in, she texted me the picture above.   Crazy Blonde!

 Cinderella one of the Nigerian Dwarf Goats kidded as well.  Her pregnancy and subsequent delivery were a well thought out and executed plan.  She did throw me off and bit and popped the babies out two days before I had calculated.  She was getting quite large and rotund and the ramp up to the condo was becoming seemingly longer and longer.  So I set up a crate for her in the basement for nights and opened up the labor and delivery pen in front of the house.  I scooted Cindy and her sister Aurora into the pen one sunny afternoon and Aurora promptly jumped out.  So poor Cindy was alone in her pre-delivery.  As evening came, I bedded her crate with straw, provided her with hay and a couple bites of chow.  Cindy is full of personality.  She is too good for human touches, stomps at the dogs and stargazes regularly.  She is the obvious leader of the tribe of Nigerians.  She did give Aurora specific instructions about ruling her realm in her absence.  She was lead into the house with ease but voiced her distaste with the crate very loudly, even while eating the chow.  She stomped at each dog as they passed by en route to their own crates.  The dogs are no longer concerned or care the least bit about a new animal in the house.  It's all old news now.  When the dogs were tucked in, Shelly and flopped ourselves down for a good 40 winks as well.  Cindy continued to vocalize her disgust with the accommodations for 20 or 30 minutes more and then all was quiet.  So quiet that I overslept until Tara Dog sounded the "let me out I have to PEE" alarm.  As I headed down the stairs in a robe and fuzzy socks, Tara Dog is still shouting.  I'm hurling insults at her as I go.  I round the corner and find Cindy has kidded two beautiful creatures.  

Both kids are cleaned and nursing and poor Cindy's crate is a mess.  Tara Dog continues to scream so I scoot her out the door and then do some screaming of my own in an attempt to get Shelly out of bed to help me.  I have no idea when she popped those babies out.  My guess is it happened in the 20-30 minutes of vocal outbursts before I went to bed.  When I left her she showed no signs of labor and her vocalizations weren't of the urgent nature.  Knowing Cindy it happened after midnight and rather than wake a human who may coo at her and love and pet her during delivery, she chose to do it silently during the night with only the dogs looking on.  Maybe she's a Scientology goat as I know they like to have their babies in silence.  Maybe aliens abducted me sometime in the night.   Whatever happened, we have two healthy baby girls and very good mama tending to them.  Neighbor Susanne put her name on a doeling months ago.  We opted to give her the darker one as we already have two dark colored Nigerians.  So based on color alone we chose to keep the lighter colored one.  Shallow I know.  Susanne has named her new kid, Patchouli and after much family discussion we named our new addition, Betty.  My grandmother was Betty Jean, the youngest of 11 and called Babe by her siblings.  Somewhere in the middle of tossing names around an image of her baking cookies flashed in my mind, so Betty was chosen.  Mama and babies continue to do fine.  Jolene has decided that Patchouli had a unique hair-do for a goat.  

 We've had other additions too.  Along with Flower the lamb you read about in the last blog, I acquired a La Mancha kid from my friend Nicole at Sunflower Valley Dairy.  She has been named PITA which stands for "Pain in the A**."  She is living up to her name just fine.  PITA and Flower are now rooming with Cindy and her kids.

 The chickens are loving the sunny days.  We had a bit of a snow the other day and the day after was like Mardi Gras.  A whole bunch of chicks running amok showing off their breasts and bugging out.  I guess that last sentence could be taken the wrong way.  There were a lot of bugs and worms on the surface and the birds were indulging.  
 Russell Crow continues to run after anything that he feels might harm his flock.  I've caught him chasing the truck several times.  Such a beautiful guy.
 Our old windmill has finally come down.  When I moved to the ranch 7 years ago it was still standing tall and intact.  It would creak and squeak in the wind.  One day the creaking and squeaking stopped.  We found that part of it had fallen off but the main structure was still standing.  After the last snow all of it toppled over.  Makes me sad but at the same time I'm accepting it as a sign.  It's time to start new projects, to see through new ideas. 
All in all it's pretty much the same around here.  We are harvesting our first batch of broiler chickens tomorrow.  I promise to be better at getting posts up sooner.

Here's to happiness!  Cheers!

1 comment:

  1. Enjoyed the update and pictures of all the new babies, I will have to stop by and say hi.
    Enjoy all the babies.
    Debbie Fischer