Monday, January 30, 2012

Figures

As I mentioned in a previous post, the half marathon training is in full swing. I've been logging about 9 miles during the week on the treadmill and then I do one long(ish) run on the weekend. So yesterday I head out at nap time (or the glory time as I call it). I mapped out a nice six mile run on the dirt roads around our house. I've learned to enjoy running on the dirt roads. It's much lower impact than pavement, nicer scenery, almost no cars. The down side is when a car does go by you get eat dust and there are dogs. I'm not a fan of free roaming dogs, they almost always seeing a running person as a target. So I got myself a nice can of Mace that straps to my hand. At least I feel a bit more prepared in case a set of pit bulls start heading my way.  Anyways, the long six mile run went great. I got a phone holder for my arm that holds the hubby's smart phone. He loaded a running app on it that keeps track of my speed and distance. It was awesome and will be used for future runs.

I get home from this run yesterday, pick up the dog to take him outside and proceed to fall down the back steps. Heard a snap and the next thing I know I'm laying in the dirt, the dog ran off (but came back) and my ankle hurts like hell. Sprained the darn thing. I've sprained my ankle many times in my youth but this had to be the most painful one. The whole evening I just laid on the couch like a veal. Ice and Ibuprofen seemed to do the trick. Poor Sean got to feed the kids, bathe them, get them to bed and feed all the animals. I'm sure thankful to have him around! I just got back from the doctors office, had to rule out a broken ankle. No broken bones, just a whole lot of swelling. Thank goodness. Doc said no running for at least two weeks. Dang. Figures, I have a nice long run with no problems and then fall down two steps when I get home.

Saturday, January 28, 2012

The unintentional goat post.

Wow it's been a long time since I last blogged. I have been nursing a sick goat for the past several days but luckily she's doing a lot better. Tuesday Dym the goat stopped eating her grain. Always a bad sign. She was active and moving so I didn't freak out. Plus she was still somewhat eating hay. So I took her temperature which was exciting (please note the sarcasm). If a 150 pound goat doesn't want a thermometer up her bum then she's going to get her way. Naturally I was too lazy to lead her into the shop where the milking stand is still set up. With her head in the stanchion I would have easily been able to get an accurate reading on a thermometer. But as it was I ended up shoving her up against the shop, grabbing a hind leg (she she couldn't run off) and getting that thermometer where it needed to go. Seeing as she's got some weight on me I was thrilled to have won that battle. Her temp was a little low but not too bad. I wormed her and gave her some probiotics to get her rumen working. I also made her some MAGIC (which is equal parts molasses, corn oil and corn syrup) to give her some energy and iron. She loves that stuff. Next day still wouldn't eat grain but ate her hay with a vengance. Finally got her back to eating grain yesterday. Still don't know what was wrong with her so I'm going to get a fecal done at the vet clinic, maybe they'll have some answers for me. 

Dym's babies turned a year old on new years eve. Coco, the girl, has turned into a flirtatious little thing. She had her first heat and was romancing the heck out of GoatMan. GoatMan hasn't been romanced ever so he was really enjoying it....to say the least. I was under the impression that after a goat had been neutered they would loose all of the hormones that would make them "flirty" with the ladies. Boy was I wrong. I just stood out there watching this in shock and awe. Coco would come dancing up to GoatMan, nuzzling him, batting her eye lashes, then turn around and flick her tail in his face. This would drive him nuts and off they'd go, rutting like crazy. I had to cover the kids eyes at one point because it was a bit too graphic for their young eyes. Plus, it lead to way too many questions. I'm just seriously hoping that they castrated GoatMan correctly and didn't miss a testicle, because I don't think I can handle another round of goat milking.




Looks like this is turning into an animal post. Last weekend Sean was nice enough to scoop out the corral for me. Manure really piles up in the winter since I'm too lazy to go out and shovel it when it's cold. I would LOVE to own a tractor with a front end loader. That's what I drool over on Craigslist. But spending 8-10 grand on something that would be used for scooping poop just doesn't add up. So Sean gets out the old Cub Cadet with the front blade on it and shoves the manure into piles in the back of the pen where it composts and I can then scoop it onto the garden in the spring (with the wheel barrow). Maybe one day I'll have a nifty small tractor that I can play with.


It's been such a mild winter that I discovered several brussel sprout plants still alive out in the garden. Here's a little video of the animals enjoying it.

video

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Fresh Sand

I know spring is far off but lately it feels "spring like" around here. The balmy 65 degree weather makes me itch to start projects. Outside projects. So this weekend we hopped in the truck and went and bought eight 4X4's. Why you ask? The kids outgrew their sandbox about a year ago and it was time to upgrade. So now they have nearly an 8X8 foot sandbox filled with a half ton of sand from the quarry (I love living only a couple of miles from a quarry...1/2 ton of sand for $2.94). Thanks Sean for all of your hard work! The kids LOVE LOVE LOVE it, and it's going to be hard to keep them out of it now that the weather has returned to 30 degrees. At least that's one spring project marked off the growing to-do list. 

Concrete slab with "old" tiny sandbox.

Sean and the frame for the new one (he screwed in the lag bolts from the bottom so it's upside down right now).
New sandbox, hardly got the sand unloaded before the kids were in it.

"Helping" me unload sand.

Sophie and Cody hopped right up to help me sweep out the bed.

Wesley got a sand digger from Santa for Christmas, he loves it! Thanks Santa!


Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Accountability

So I'm going for it. I found a local half marathon the end of April and I'm officially training for it. Although not much is changing in the training department. I am now running three miles, three days a week and then doing a long run outside on the weekends (either Saturday or Sunday). My "long" run on the weekends has been only four miles because I lack motivation to make it any longer. That is going to change now (I hope). The only roadblock I can foresee is the weather actually becoming more like winter. It's been unseasonably warm lately. Like 60 degrees, kids playing in the sandbox warm. It's awesome.  I suppose the dreadmill, I mean treadmill, will work in a pinch for the long run but for some reason I hate running on that thing when the kids and hubby are around on the weekends.

One thing that is making the longer three mile treadmill runs doable is our fancy new cordless headphones (Santa brought them ;). I put them on, go to streaming NetFlix and run while watching a Vampire Diaries (don't judge me, they aren't all that bad...Sean even watches them). A 45 minute show makes running almost enjoyable.

I can't forget to mention the music. For the long outside runs I've been venturing out and listening to all sorts of music. I used to be a strictly country music gal. But it's difficult to run to country, so I've been experimenting with pop and rock and like it! I'm now a big fan of groups I'd never even heard of six months ago. My current favorites are Coldplay and Mumford & Sons, but I'm sure I'll be into something else by next month. Gotta keep it fresh. I'll definitely need some fresh tunes to run the 13.1 miles on April 29th. Can you tell I'm pumped?

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Sick Day Bubble Bath


The kids have been pretty puny lately. They caught some bug which produced a pretty high fever, one that couldn't be brought down with medicine. So the scary kind of fever. They've been moping around so we decided to have a fun afternoon bubble bath to lighten their spirits. It worked wonders!

video


Sunday, January 8, 2012

The Hunt

One of the Hubby and my favorite past times is playing Playstation 3. We each have our games that we are into and this time of the year is when we start back into playing them. Well, my favorite game series of all of them is Ratchet and Clank. I've played all of them since they released the first one back on the original Playstation. A new one (All 4 one) was recently released and I received it for Christmas (well actually I bought it for myself). The fun thing about this one is that it's a multiple player game, you need a partner to get through it. So Hubby and I have been lounging around on the couch in the evenings playing this game like a couple of kids. It's been something I look forward to doing all day. It's quite fun. So last night we prepare for our evening of play and go to put the game in, only to find the disk and case completely gone. It's stored next to the TV, up high on the built in entertainment center. Frustrated, we scoured the house last night. Looked in cupboards, under couch cushions, in toy boxes and behind drapes. We looked everywhere. The only conclusion was that one of the kids took off with it. Meaning it could be anywhere (for example the oven, or the trash can, or the toilet). It's always a surprise (please note my sarcasm).

So first thing this morning we asked Wesley if he remembers taking the game down from beside the television. He thought for a while and said:

"Hmmm, yes I remember watching cartoons and taking it. I put it in a lunch box with three beavers."

Sean and I look at each other and immediately look into the shelves where some of the toys are kept in the living room. We dig back until we find a yellow lunch box. Pretty much the ONLY thing we didn't look in. Sure enough it's sitting inside of it with a few Alvin and the Chipmunk toys on top. At that point we are just busting up laughing. Such a pack rat, that one. Having kids has been such an adventure. A strange, exciting and often hilarious adventure.

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Resolutions

2011 was a big year of personal growth for me. I hope 2012 is equally enlightening. With the beginning of a new year brings new resolutions. Here are mine:

1. Be a happy mom. It's simple to write, I wish it was as simple to accomplish. Being home with my children every day is great. I'm happy that I can do this for them. But if we are being honest here, sometimes they drive me nuts. Hide in a closet nuts. By the end of the day I'm counting down the minutes until the Hubby comes home to take some of the crazy off of my shoulders. They are young (4 & 2) so I'm hopeful that this is a stage and the crazy screaming, running through the house hitting each other phase will at some point fade and they will be easier to handle. But until then, my resolution is to be a less stressed, more well adjusted, non screaming, happy mom to my kids.

2. Keep running. I've found that the key to my happiness lies in a piece of equipment in the living room. The treadmill. Running keeps the crazies away, and it's a whole lot cheaper than therapy. Ever since I started running regularly (back in May) I've been a much more even keeled person. The ups and downs of life are easier to handle, as are the children. Endorphins are magical things, I'd even go as far to say that I'm addicted to them. I'm logging about 10 miles a week right now but hope to increase that gradually as the weather warms up. Running is time just for me, no kids screaming at me, no dogs barking, no worries at all. It's much needed "me" time, something that we all need...not just the mom's of the world.  This year I will keep running.

3. Have more dates. When kids come along it's really easy to fall into the rut of being a parent. After all, it consumes every waking hour. This year I will make time to have more date nights with my husband. We are also planning a trip to Hawaii (a second honeymoon perhaps?). Now just to find a babysitter that will take the kids for a week.

4. Blog more! I've taken a little hiatus from blogging over the past several months and I'm going to try and get back to it. Here's hoping!

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Happy New Year?

Happy New Year everyone! I hope you are ringing in your new year on a better note than we are in our household. The dreaded stomach bug from hell has been visiting for the past few days. I swear I've never washed more bedding in my life. The washing machine has been going for the past two days without stopping. Greta threw up on Wesley's bed, then Wesley threw up all over his bed then it hit Sean and I. Luckily we've just been queasy....so very queasy. Like a roller coaster ride you just never can get off of. I ventured out to WalMart yesterday for my weekly food run, the whole time wishing and hoping I wasn't the cause of "clean up on isle 4". Luckily, I made it home without losing my lunch....oh wait, I haven't eaten much of anything in days....not much chance of losing anything.

Not a whole lot happening around here. I thought I'd share my newest rodent story. Yes, I know more rodent stories. I seem to be fixated on them. But I swear I've never had so many issues with them until recently. I'm starting to think Kitty did more to keep them at bay then I thought she did before she passed away. Anyways, while we were out of town for Christmas my friend Jessica came over to feed the animals. She's a life saver in the fact that I don't know of anyone else that would be willing to come over and feed the 20+ animals that we have. We'd never go anywhere without your help, thank you Jessica! Unfortunately things seem to happen when she comes to take care of the animals. Not her fault of course, just bad timing. The morning I left, I noticed one of the chickens wasn't walking very well. This hen has done this before and recovers just fine so I didn't worry too much. I asked Jessica to look in on them that evening. She came over, after dark, wearing a head lamp (you know, those flashlights you wear on your head?). She opened the door to the hen house and had the feeling that the floor was moving. She focused her headlamp on the floor and the ground was covered with mice, all of which stopped what they were doing and looked up at her before flooding the door way and spilling out onto her boots. She said there were so many she couldn't count. The whole time resisting the urge to scream like a little girl. *shiver* Poor Jessica. I knew we had a mouse problem in the hen house but I didn't know it was to that extent. She went in after the automatic light had gone off for the night and the hens were all roosting for the evening. I don't go out that late so I think I was oblivious to the problem (I'm going to tell myself that anyways).

So I decided to declare war on the mice. If you'll remember we built the hen house in the shop with an outside aviary attached. Things I didn't realize when doing this is that we are providing a prime real estate location to hundreds of mice. They live in the shop and go into the hen house to feed on all of the uneaten chicken food (chickens are very messy). I even have a constant supply of heated water in there. Plus our shop kitty passed away this fall so they don't even have predators. Well, they have me I guess (insert evil laughter).  Two nights ago I placed 24 mouse traps on the floor around the hen house. It took half an hour and while I was baiting the traps (with peanut butter) I actually caught two mice. By the next evening I had caught 23 mice. Twenty three! So, I bought 16 more traps yesterday and will probably catch 16 more mice by tomorrow. Yuck. Talk about wiping out the population. I will just keep traps out there at all times from now on.

Oh and that chicken that wasn't walking well? She was dead by the next morning and her sisters had cannibalized her. They literally ate her. So poor Jessica had to scrape her half eaten frozen body off of the ground. Apparently caged chickens (non free range like mine) are prone to cannibalizing each other. Even after seven years out here with animals there are still things that surprise me. Let us all hope the new year brings fewer disgusting animal stories. Or maybe I should just stop sharing them?