Saturday, July 30, 2011

Who knew...

one post would bring a follower? Thanks, Stef.

Harvest finally started one week ago. It's nice seeing the combines running.

The chickens are growing. The chicken house is not. There is something wrong with that picture. Maybe I should start one. Oh, but I'll need to read the instructions. I've been looking at lots of plans online. I could draw a plan. That's close to reading the instructions.

I said I'd talk about pigs. Pigs smell bad. I've been told they don't. I have been in the hog barn. I shower as soon as I get home. They stink and the stink lingers. I'm happy they live 1.5 miles away.

As I read that paragraph, maybe it would be more accurate to say, when in confinement, the odor from the pig's normal bodily functions stinks. When the pigs are outside roaming around, the pig stench is not so noticeable. Of course, that also depends upon the size of the pasture. So, if a couple of pigs are roaming over an acre, the stench I could live with. In the barn, major stench, and I won't live near the barn (remember, they are 1.5 miles away). Small pasture, noticeable stench depending upon the wind.  I've even handled that. Is this clear as mud?

But back to my original statement and as I am the one writing, I say "Pigs smell bad."

DH grew up raising pigs commercially. Of course, in Oregon, commercially does not mean an operation like those in the Midwest. (By the way, why is the Midwest called the Midwest? It looks east to me. I guess I could go west for a very long time and get there, but that doesn't seem like 'mid' to me.)

Back to pigs.

When our oldest daughter got to be old enough for 4-H, DH said farm kids don't do 4-H, they live on farms. Okay, somewhere I missed that rule. And how did he know that? Farmers don't read the instructions and I'm sure a hammer is not involved when joining 4-H.

So daughters 1 and 2 did not participate in 4-H because they lived on a farm. Actually, DD1 wouldn't have done animals; it would involve getting dirty. One must be clean while living on a farm. One must believe dirt is not found on a farm. Dirt is nowhere on a farm. If you believe that, I've got a bridge to sell you.

Along comes daughter 3, who never left my side. And I do mean never. When she got to be 4-H age, I said she is going to be in 4-H even if we do live on a farm. She must learn to do something that is not to my immediate right. Does she want to do beef or swine? She chose swine because they are smaller. Works for me, DH know about pigs.

First year, bought two weaner pigs. (Our county lets the kids show two market animals but only one can be sold at the auction. The second one comes home with us.) They (the pigs) were nice to us; they got the runs. DH and I are in the pen trying to catch them to give them medication. Catch one, we both get sprayed. Being sprayed by liquid poop is not an activity I would recommend. Avoid it if at all possible.

DH starts muttering, all G rated, "I hate pigs. I quit raising pigs for a reason." I ignored him.

First one medicated, caught the second. More liquid poop dispersed on person holding pig. Okay, I admit, I'm the one who pushed this project. I won't complain about the liquid running down my leg, but I do get the shower first.

Not so much "I hate pigs. There is a reason I quit raising pigs." muttering. Nor would I call it conversational statements. Probably forcefully stated would be a better description.

Second year, buy three pigs. Yes, three. The farmer we bought from sold us the runt of the litter. As one of the 'good' pigs was a gilt (girl), DD3 showed her in the breeds class and had the other and runt for market. The runt caught up and made weight. The gilt won Gilt of Fair. Not bad. DD3 also won Junior Showman; this from the child who would not leave my side.

DH decided to keep the gilt and breed her. I thought he hated pigs. Oops, didn't work out as she got sick, had a high fever and fried her ovaries. Just as well, DH hates pigs.

Third year, DD2 complains that DD3 gets to sell a pig and make money; she didn't get to do that. DH tells her she can join. She declines as it is the last year she is eligible and everyone else will be so much better at it. DH signs her up anyway. I thought he hated pigs, now we have to get four.

Have you noticed that every year we have to increase our pig purchase? He hates pigs. I was not involved in the need to purchase four. Actually, that year there was a pig shortage. We were able to find two, one for each.

Fair arrived. We laughed as the judge said you could tell DD2 had been showing a long time; if he only knew. (It doesn't matter how many pigs you take to fair, you have to show in the showmanship class.) DD2 is now upset that she didn't get to start when she was in 4th grade. Take it up with your dad; farm kids don't do 4-H.

As this is getting to be too long, I'll finish the pig story another day. It's just getting to the good part, in my opinion. Well, those of us who know the rest of the story think it is funny. DH, however, isn't laughing.

I'm going to work on some cards now. That is really the reason I started a blog. I needed a place to show them. (But that requires knowing how to get pictures from camera to laptop to blog. I haven't read that page yet.) As I was required to name the blog, I'd rather be known as the crazy person who thinks she lives on a farm then the one who makes really weird cards and just what was she thinking when she put those together.

Until another day...

Oh, I've made two angel food cakes with the turkey eggs. It wasn't as hard as I thought, just time consuming.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Heat Wave? What heat wave?

Actually watched the news and found out most of the nation is having a heat wave. Sorry to hear you are suffering. If I could, I'd send you our rain.
The farmers here are almost a month late in getting harvest started. I hate to say it, but I'm so glad we no longer farm; I would be major stressed and spending time at the real funny farm. Our July rain average is .52 inches. We are at 1.05 inches today. The total isn't so bad, it's the number of days it has rained that is the pits; it's just enough to keep the combines from running. If we don't get some summer weather the fear is the grass seed (for your lawns, golf courses and pastures, not to smoke) will start sprouting.
Here's to everyone getting the weather they need/want. Cooler for those suffering through the heat, and heat for us.