Homeland Farm

Homeland Farm

Tuesday, December 31, 2013

The Year in Review

Cliffy and his new pal Molly Magoo

    Once again, it is December 31st. Once again, I say "where did the last year go?" My grandmother always said, the older you get, the faster time goes, and she was certainly right. I can not believe it is almost 2014.
     So, I will do one last blog for the year, and will make it a recap of the fun and frivolity that happened here at Homeland Farm in the last 12 months!
Ferg the pot belly pig came to live with us

Goat on the glider, ei ei ooooo
Doober dog on the well
Stewbeef roasting on an open fire..
Cowboy Cliffy rides again
skinny alpacas came to us from an auction
a wild chupacabra came to live with us in the spring
Speaking of spring, strawberry season was divine..
we were very busy all year..making jam by the case
hay by the ton
warmed baby pigs by the dozen..
paraded down Main Street..no really!
took care of baby bunnies
painted corral fences
fixed soggy corrals
fed good old Mabel and all her friends
fed fat pigs marshmallows.. and then it was fall...and time for..
walking your Belgian
and sunning your pig on the lawn..
and turning your goats loose..
and having a late fall ride before..
winter and snow again..blanket time again! So! Happy New Year to one and all and I hope 2014 is a spectacular year for us all! My resolution..write in my blog more often! Here's hoping I make good on that..for at least a month! :D

Sunday, December 22, 2013

I gave birth...to a book!

Here, just in time for Christmas, is the book I wrote about 20 years ago. It is certainly a long time in coming, but it is here and I am celebrating! (Note the bubbly). SO in honor of the release of my published short stories...a little poem...Ahem..

 Twas three days before Christmas,
  and all through the farm,
  Champagne was a flowing,
  And doing no harm.

  The book it was done,
  a reason to party,
  the author just hoped,
  she would look like a smarty.

  She wrote of horses,and pigs
  riding, and chickens,
  Ok, so it is pretty simple reading,
  and certainly not Dickens.

   But give it out as a present,
   the author surely does plan,
   Christmas is near,
   and it is probably better then jam..

   So the children all snuggle
   deep in their beds,
   and hope that the sequel,
   won't fill them with dread.

   'Cause the next funny book will be,
    about Brogan, Cameron and Liam,
    featuring flying squirrels, and half dead bats,
   and how they all ran just to flee 'em..

    So stay tuned, dear readers,
    and don't shed a tear,
    I promise the next one,
    won't take 20 more years.


Saturday, December 14, 2013

Middle of the Night Musings by a Menopausal Mainer

       Ahh, menopause..you are such a hag. My sleeping habits have not been my own since I turned 50. I used to fall into bed and sleep like the proverbial log all night, back in the day. Now, I am hot flashing, and tossing and turning all night, every night.
      It is the same thing about every evening. I go to bed chilly, with cold feet as the floors in this old farmhouse are always cold. I slide into bed, and sigh a happy sigh as the electric blanket has done its job.
     "Ahh, nice and warm," says I..at that moment. The Doober dog (Annalee) will usually come in and join me on the bed, and I shove my cold feet under her butt, as that is the quickest way to warm them up. I fall into blissful slumber, and soon hear Cliffy come in to join us. We push and shove the dog pile around to make room for him, although I often feel like the innkeeper in Bethlehem, telling him there is no room at the inn.
Umm..my toes are lower, dog..
      We have one dog, Annalee or Doober as we for some reason call her. Yet, there are often 4 dogs in the bedroom, all vying for a spot on the bed. Brogan has three dogs, two of which have now for some unknown reason decided they like to sleep at "Granny and Grampy's" house better then their own place. The third will just stay when she goes out for the evening, otherwise he stays faithful to his owner..not like the other canine Benedict Arnolds.
..And this is just two dogs..
        So, once we have made room for poor Cliffy, we all fall off to sleep. This will last anywhere from 3-4 hours, and then it starts. I go from, "Annalee, let me shove my toes under you for warmth" to " Get off me dog, I'm sweating my BUTT OFF!"
       Off goes the blankets and up goes the window. The bitterly cold air blasts in over me, instantly cooling me down and freezing Cliffy to a popsicle. And so it continues...electric blanket, off...window up. Holy cow, is it cold..window down, electric blanket cranking. Blanket thrown over poor frozen Cliffy, who's only part visible above the blankets is the crown on his head.
        By 3 am, I am usually wide awake and that's when the weird random thoughts start. Odd stuff, nothing earth shattering. Here is a top 10 list of the most common 3 am musings...

   10.  Hmm..is that the furnace? I wonder how much oil we have..will have to check that in morning. (never do..)
     9.  Wish I had something chocolate..(thought all day every day)
    8.   Which dog farted/is snoring/or hogging the blankets?
    7.    Oops...it wasn't the dog....
    6.    I need to go grocery shopping..we have nothing good..
    5.    What is that sound? Are the horses loose? (Yes, they most likely are..)
    4.     I wonder if this is good blog material...(No, it most likely isn't..)
    3.    (Singing...) "It's beginning to look a lot like CHRISTMASSSSSS"
    2.     Chinese would be good...(Hey, it has been a long time since supper...)
      And the number one most random middle of the night musing.."Hark...is that the sound of a cat throwing up?" (Yes, it was.)
       So, another night, another sleepless few hours. I particularly hate waking at 3am..It is really too early to stay up and make coffee. 4 am -I could do it, but 3 is just too early. Ok, now I am cold again, so will head back to the bed to warm up, and that will make me sleepy.
Cliffy and the latest "Molly Magoo"


Monday, December 9, 2013

Its beginning to look a lot like Christmas!

Ahh the holidays, my favorite time of the year. It is easy for me to say that since I am inside cooking, cleaning and doing other domestic goddess stuff, while the rest of the kinfolk are OUTSIDE during the cold and snowy mess. I have long retired from the daily "chores", now leaving that to the other more able bodied folk here at Homeland Farm. Besides, BLOG I MUST! But, oh man, I have been terrible at this.
Liam-pro snow shoveler
Cliffy hauling poo, a cold winter job

Brogan hauling sawdust, while I take pictures..(someone had to do it!)
Ree Drummond, my personal blogging hero, does such a great job. She blogs every day, often many times. It certainly isn't that I don't have much to say, as I am well known to never shut up really..but it seems hard for me to make time to plant my bum in my computer chair long enough to get an update down for all in cyberspace to read. I like to blame it on my newly evolving dialysis schedule (see KIDNEY KHRONICLES.BLOGSPOT for the latest with all that..), but I am not sure that is entirely it either. And it certainly isn't my devotion to all things housekeeping, as I will pretty much avoid vacuuming and dusting at all costs.
baked goods for sale!
      No, I think it is just the unexpected "stuff" that happens, that seems to take up a lot of the hours in my day.
Like..cooking..I recently went on a bake-a-thon, to help raise money for my son Cameron's testing. He has no insurance, and needed a large sum of money as a down payment for the doctor. I did a lot of baking, and between the actual cooking and dish washing, it seemed I had no time left over for anything. Supper was often MYO..or Make Your Own, as we call it. At the end of the baking day, we had lots of delicious looking baked goods that we could NOT TOUCH..and nothing we COULD eat. Bummer.

"Sorry about the skunk juice on your bed mom.."
   Now that the testing is over, and paid for, (thank goodness), I figured I would have lots of free time to get ready for the holidays, and yet, there still isn't enough time in the day. I decided I needed to change the bed today, as my young (dumb) dog Annalee got sprayed by a skunk, and naturally jumped up on our bed and rubbed her face on the blankets. Nice. So that is a job all in itself..King size bed making is a feat for two, not one. Unless you don't mind making a dozen trips around and around, trying to get the blankets and sheets just right.
Liam and Molly Magoo
Cliffy hauling hay
     Plus, time is taken up just feeding animals, inside AND out. We recently added another dog to the pack, making 4 here. A little Pekinese came to join our gang, and has bonded very tightly to me. I needed another critter at my feet during the day. With Brogan's two dogs here in my house (where they are most of the time) and now these other two, plus 4 cats, and two strays, it makes feeding almost a 40 hour a week job. That of course, is not counting the 20 plus horses, bull, alpaca herd, three pot belly pigs, the peacocks and chickens, ducks and Guinea fowl. Those fall on the OUTSIDE crew..the dogs and cat are my critters to feed.
And this is just the dogs...
   Well, I have lost most of the morning now and must get busy. Blankets and sheets are ready to dry, and I have to clean a litter box or three. And, well, the cats need food..and I have to figure out something to make for supper..and the dogs are wanting to go back outside..and I thought I would vacuum....or not...