Tuesday, February 14, 2012

A Day in the Strife of...

I woke to breakfast and a cheerful husband who made the breakfast for me. Lucky girl tis I.
After checking all the VITAL social media outlets, I headed for the great outdoors.Come with me, it's been awhile since I dragged you out there isn't it?

As a reminder, Keith does 75% of the outside chores, I do 75% of the inside chores which means we are in the average day doing 150% of the farm work every day. No wonder we are tired...

My outside work in the winter is a nice break from the rest of the year, no grass to cut (mow is me), no garden etc..My inside work is intense and consists of many hours doing bookkeeping, talking to customers, marketing, keeping items ordered for the store, etc...

I prefer the outside work, unless I prefer the inside work, it all depends on the color t-shirt I am wearing and the amount of essential oil I sniffed the day before. No, I will not explain.

So outside work goes like this. I amble out around 10am to feed calves. On the way I am greeted by the big calves closest to the house. I bottle fed them for several months and it is obvious they still miss me.

I pass the chicken house and drop off some grain and water to them. I am greeted in a weird and unnatural way by Sunset our Blue Slate Turkey.

We were gifted him as a 3 day old turkey-ette and he at first thought I was his mother, now he thinks I am his very own Patsy Cline, that is why his feathers are all in the upright ruffled position. The bird is just plain Craaaaaazy....

Next we have the calf hutches, all lined up in a row because I like rows.

They are all looking at me cause I'm the one with the milk and the Pavlov wagon.

Since the calves milk comes from real cows and not a powdered mix or a vending machine, I have to wait until Keith milks the cows first. He saves the calves milk for me in a big steel bucket set in hot water to keep the milk as close to mother cows internal body temp as possible.

I fill buckets (for the older calves) and bottles for the younger calves and wheel them out to the mooing babies.

After all the bottles are filled, I take them out to the calves , eleven now, but have to stop and remind the pigs, rushing out of the barn, that Keith will be out to feed them soon.

Always nosey, the pigs had to investigate my activities

After calves were done and fresh hay given, bottles and nipples washed ,(careful now) I headed to the north end of the property for equine awareness day (The donkeys constant braying made me aware I needed to feed THEM)

And there she is, Nora, staring me down. Why can't I look this good when my hair is uncombed and all wild?

A few pads of hay to them and across the lane I toddle to the BIG pigs, Mad Max and his harem of lovely breeder stock. They too think they are starving. Waa waa waa.

That's Leopard on the right, a 1/2 breed if ever there was. Born with a bad toe but a great personality we decided to keep her even though she was only half Red Wattle. She makes a great mama. Out of a huge litter our GK Allana picked her out telling us she would be a good one to keep and she was. Standing just to her right, your left, is the awesome Dot. Both weigh in at around 450 pounds. A little father down the line is the king of the farm...Mad Max

Mad, unlike his name, is sweet and kind, unless you get between him and his grain or his girls. At 600 pounds we NEVER get between him and his grain or his girls. He is full bred Red Wattle .

Off in a nearby paddock is the petite Sophie, due to farrow (deliver) any day now. What ? did someone say contest?!?

Yes lets! It's been awhile has it not? So OK here goes.

Via the comment section of this blog send me your guess for the date (official due date is Feb 18),
number of  live births (her last litter she had 10) and ..tell me how many will be boys and how many will be girls.

Whoever gets the most right answers of the three questions (date, number,sexes) WINS !

The winner will receive your choice of the following, hoof roll please; four bars of all natural handmade soap OR Two South-Pork-Ranch T-shirts mailed to you , OR if you live locally $20 worth of product in our Farm Store , (bacon, steaks, popcorn, eggs etc..)

Ready , Set. GO !


  1. Colonel Mustard, with a candle stick in the library...oopps wrong game. ;-)

    Feb 17. 5 boys and 4 girls.

    BTW, no pictures of Walter???

  2. Feb 22, 9 in liter ( 7 boys, 3 girls.

    Good luck with everything on the farm during this time!!


  3. Hmmm,just cuz I love a good contest-I'll take a stab in the dark Feb.16-5 boys and 6 girls.

  4. Great road trip around the farm!
    Feb 21, 12, 8 boys 4 girls

  5. What a great tour round the farm. Lovely animals.

    I'm going for Feb 19. 3 boys, 8 gals.

    Does that standard red colour on the barn have a name? Barn Red?

  6. Now my head hurts.... ummm...

    Feb 18 7 girls 4 boys!

    Nora is soooo beautiful, I am going back to gaze at her some more <3

  7. Those pigs are magnificent... Oh I miss my two very much
    Animal care in the ice is no joke is it? Keep warm

  8. Interesting farm tour. Nora is so beautiful.

    Feb 20, 11, 4 girls, 7 boys

  9. Sounds like you went through a full days work in the morning.
    Feb 26, live piggies 8, 5 girls and 3 boys.

  10. 2/20--11 --6 girls 5 boys.

    Go sniff some essential oils ... you worked too hard yesterday! :)

  11. I enjoyed the tour:))

    Feb 20- 7 boys, 3 girls

  12. Where's the goats? LOL
    I'm going to guess Feb 18 - 6 boys, 5 girls, 1 died.

  13. Okay I'm going to go with February 17th, with 6 live birthday, four boys, two girls. Loved the farm tour!!!

  14. February 19th.
    12 total.
    8 boys
    4 girls

  15. Februaryyy...hm...20th. (Wasn't the last contest litter a bit late?) 9 piglets. 5 female, 4 male.

  16. 2/21, 9 piggies, 5 girls, 4 boys

    I loved the tour!!!

  17. Feb 21, 11 piggies, 7 girls, 4 boys.

    Loved the tour!

  18. I loved this post. And why is it that all animals think they're starving to death about two hours before feed time?

    Now my contest guess. I'm terrible at guessing, so this is random wild!

    Feb. 18
    11 piglets
    6 boys
    5 girls

  19. Feb 22nd, 10 piglets, 6 girls and 4 boys.


  20. the 20th
    11 total
    7 boys
    4 girls

  21. Let's see...if I remember from my 4-H days, pig gestation is 3 months, 3 weeks and 3 days and seeing as how livestock only gives birth in the middle of the night or during horrible weather, I'm going to pick Feb 21st when its forecast to rain in your neck of the woods. I'll say 10 little piggies, 6 girls and 4 boys. Scientific enough?? Ha!

  22. Hmm, my first guess the piglets contest....

    11 piggies, 7 girls and 4 boys on February 21st.

    This should be fun!

  23. OK all. Contest is over ! Mrs. Sophie had her 6 babes on Feb 17 which means Jenn nailed it. See my post of today (2/18) for details. Thanks everyone for playing Lets Make A Squeal !

  24. http://www.hongboit.com/blog/space.php?uid=51830&do=blog&id=485107