Friday, November 27, 2015


I hope everyone had a lovely Thanksgiving. We stayed home this year and kept it small and cozy, just the four of us. We have all been battling the creeping crud and getting well is what we want to do this Thanksgiving break. I made several pounds of snow crab, a small ham and several side dishes to gobble up. It was a hit. We are now sitting here listening to the sound of ice pellets hitting the roof and thankful we have a nice warm house to stay cozy in. We aren't Black Friday people and there will be no braving the roads to get a good deal on anything. My Christmas shopping is officially done and now I get to sit back and enjoy the Holiday season.

We put up the Christmas tree a week ago and the kids really enjoyed packing the ornaments on it. We decided we might need to buy a larger tree to accommodate all the wonderful homemade ornaments that I receive every year. Our "slim" tree is a little too skinny these days. Maybe next year.

The animals are all keeping warm outside in their houses with oodles of bedding. Dym, my old goat, is going into the winter season in great condition. She's fairly fat and sleek looking which is just what I want to see. I did buy her a new coat this year, my old cut up fleece jacket wasn't cutting it any longer. I found her a Thinsulate XXXL dog turnout coat which fits her great. I can't imagine the size of dog that was made for!

I'm trying a new method of bedding in the goat house this winter. It's called the "Deep Bedding" method. Normally in the spring and fall I clean out the goat house and start with fresh bedding but this year I didn't and just kept piling on fresh straw on top of the old soiled bedding. Eventually the bottom layer starts to break down and produces heat from the composting waste. This heat travels up and warms the goats through the winter. It hasn't gotten bitterly cold yet (although 26 isn't too warm either) so we'll see how it goes through the winter.

Saturday, November 14, 2015

Fun with Cousins

Last weekend the kids and I went to visit my sister to celebrate my nephews 6th birthday. Emery is sure growing up. It's fun to see all the cousins together, they sure do have fun. We got to go outside and enjoy the beautiful fall weather with a nature walk and a bike ride. They were trying out a newly purchased tandem bike and Greta and I were happy to be testers. Happy birthday Emery!

Friday, November 13, 2015


Yesterday was not your typical day around here. I went outside to feed the animals in the evening and heard the neighbors dogs back at the pond barking hysterically at something or someone. After listening to this for five minutes I decided to go investigate. When they saw me coming they ran off and there, in the pond, was a whitetail buck with his head down in the water. Wondering why he was just standing there I kept walking towards him. That's when I discovered he had locked antlers with another buck and they were both in the pond, the other deer was dead. The live buck was tired, I could tell he'd been wrestling for hours and he could hardly keep his head above the water.

I had no idea what to do. The pond is not on our property so I jumped in the car and drove to the neighbors behind us who do own the pond. Nobody was home so back home I went. I couldn't just watch this poor deer drown so I went down to the pond to see if I could help him. He didn't have any fight left, he was barely standing and shaking in the cold water. I rolled up my pants and waded into the pond, grabbed his antlers and attempted to pull him and his dead nemesis ashore. Turns out two bucks are very heavy.....imagine that. He wasn't fighting me but he wasn't helping either. I managed to keep his head above the water and pull him in a bit but I could tell it was a loosing battle. There wasn't much else I could do so I patted him on the head and told him to hold on.

I decided to drive back to the neighbors and put a post it note on their front door but managed to catch them on the road instead. The guy is a hunter and I knew he'd be able to help the deer somehow, even if that just meant a bullet. He and his wife jumped on their four wheeler and were able to drag both the deer out of the pond with a rope. The one was still alive when I went home at dark. I have no idea what happened to him. The neighbor was going to call the game warden to find out what to do with the deer. Hopefully it was a less painful death than freezing or drowning in the pond would have been. This goes down as one of the joys of living in the country. You just never know what you're going to find.

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Cub Scouts

That's my little Cub Scout (and his sister). Wesley has decided that Scouting might be a good fit this year. So far it's been enjoyable. He has gotten to walk all over town picking up food donations for the local food pantry and this week we decorated the towns cemetery with flags for Veteran's Day. I really like the community involvement that Boy Scouts has and I'm thrilled he's part of it. Perhaps we'll get Greta involved in Girl Scouts next year.

On a side note, notice that big pot of petunia's next to Wesley in the picture? Yeah we still have big pots of blooming flowers on the deck on November 11th. That is crazy late for a first freeze. We are all enjoying this very mild Fall.

Thursday, November 5, 2015

Mystery Package

Last Friday was a rather dreary, wet and rainy day. It was a chilly 50 degree day and I was expecting a package. I've never ordered something alive off of the internet before and I was worried because it was scheduled to be delivered last Friday. It was also the day that the kids had their Halloween parties and I wasn't going to be home to receive my package. So as I drove out of the driveway on my way to the school I thought I'd check the mailbox in the off chance it was sitting in there. It was! I didn't have time to make it back into the house to unbox the contents into the warmth so I tucked it into my sweater and off I went to the Halloween party.

The box and it's contents stayed warm with me until I got home and had a chance to open up the box two hours later.

Inside among the newspapers  was a small bag containing an even smaller plastic container full of water. What was in that water?

40 baby Malaysian Trumpet Snails of course! I had read all about how beneficial they are to aquariums and couldn't find them locally so I bought them off of eBay. Two days later they were sitting in my cold mailbox. I popped them into a little bowl of warm aquarium water and they perked right up. These fascinating snails burrow down in the sand and eat dead plant material and debris. They burrow out at night and clean the tank like the little janitors they are. I plopped them into the little kitchen aquarium with Baby Macy our newest betta (Greta named it).

Just thought I'd share how I wore a box of snails to my daughters Halloween party last Friday. Not often do I do that.

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

With the Kids

We had the most extraordinary fall day this past weekend. It was a perfect 75 degrees with sun and no wind. The kids and I had nothing planned so I took them out for pizza and the park, which is always a hit.

I'm gonna make it to the top Mom!

I did it! Woohoo!

Now how do I get down?!

Mom you're going to break it!

Sunday, November 1, 2015

Halloween: This & That

We had a nice and spooky Halloween with the kids. This year Greta went as Olaf and Wesley went as a cheeseburger. He's got a food theme going, last year he was a banana.

Trick-or-treating went smoothly and we are now loaded down with sugar, sugar and more sugar. You can never have enough sugar right? Yeah right! I did the room mom gig for Greta's kindergarten class and it was fun. The parents really stepped up and helped out bringing ideas and food for the Halloween party. Greta has a really nice group of kids and parents in her class.....and her teacher is just the best!

Some years I drop the ball and forget to get pumpkins but this year I remembered! And I remembered to buy a pumpkin carving kit....because mine runs away every year. So I plunked the kids down and let them draw and carve their own pumpkins. Greta needed help with the sawing action needed to carve but for the most part they did them themselves.

Since this post if pretty random I thought I'd share a picture of our resident deer who likes to visit our backyard every fall. She usually has a set of twins on her but this year she only had a single fawn. It's nice to see her back.

We don't get a lot of the beautiful fall colors that other parts of the country get but we do get some. I love when the maples along the driveway change to yellow. Happy Fall everyone!