I have been writing this blog for a week, started it Sunday night! So you can travel through parts of my week,
Well the whole tax thing is mostly done, I need to pick up and file the papers but I am out of paperclips and file folders, but it is all e-filed as of Sunday night at 10:30. I wish I could go back to the old system I had for years. I used dBase to write a program for my farm taxes, it worked great, there were custom entry pages a a fantastic final report that just took a few key taps to print out what I take hours to manually add up. But the old dBase worked in dos, plus it never progressed beyond dot matrix printers, and eventually became obsolete. I have looked for a ready made program but they are mostly business programs and farm taxes are quite different then other businesses. I am working on a spread sheet entry form to see if it is workable in excel, as long as I don’t want to sync with other computers I can use it for free on my iPad Pro. Spreadsheets tend to be much more cumbersome for entry then databases.
Two of the young first time ewes have each had a large ram lamb, I was kind of disappointed not to have twins but first timers frequently have single births. Arya had her ram on the 11th, she totally ignored the poor little thing and is still ignoring him. That coupled with her over sized teats is making it hard on the little guy. I have to hold her still and lift her leg so she doesn’t kick him and he eats, in the beginning it is hard for him to get the teat in his mouth, then as it deflates he gets it too far down his throat. I have seen many cows with teats smaller then hers! Rita had her ram Monday, she is a good mother, lamb all cleaned up and fed properly when I got there. Hope her twin sister Natalie does as well. Rita and Natalie are Leilia’s last set of twins from two years ago.
The water is running over the pastures from the state culvert in full force, it is kind of late starting so I am hoping it doesn’t do as much damage as usual. The water is of course running in the cellar too, my spring comes in the cellar through an outer pipe, and the outer pipe must be ended right in the ditch across the road, every spring water pours in from the outer pipe, then it all goes away. I woke up Saturday to my sump pump not working at all. The water in the front part of the cellar was over my knee boots, kind of a chilling experience that had to be repeated several times. I tried to get the gas pump going, but I expect it needs new a new plug plus the soft plastic bulb that helps starting by pushing gas is cracked and broken. So I called the hardware store in Patten, then buzzed up there to buy a new pump, another thing that keeps going up in price, $109 for this one. Even sump pumps need some putting together, so that took a while. I had to pull out the old pump, and hose, while wading in the deep water, getting the hose out required climbing the extension ladder a couple of times, then pushing the new hose out. There is a metal pole in the ground to tie the pump too, but most of it was under water, burr! Before plugging it in I had to go upstairs and out to arrange the hose outside, then back in the water. Finally I got it plugged in and going, it was 1:30 and chores not even started, sigh. My front cellar is about 15’ deep with a dirt and bedrock floor, the sides are stone with no mortar. Luckily the furnace and water heater are in the other part of the cellar, you have to step up to get there and walls were rock, but have been cemented in.
Well night chores presented a new lamb, Natalie finally had her lamb, it is a single large white ram. All of the first time ewes had single births this year, a little disappointing, but that is life. Twins are easier all around, they are smaller, so easier births, plus two of them even out the nursing on a ewe. Many lambs will suck on only one side, sometimes to the detriment of the other half of the udder. Twins are very genetic, twins have twins, so usually I only keep lambs that are twins. I was quite happy to see that Arya the ewe that has been totally ignoring her lamb is finally letting him nurse. The lamb is very determined, so I think that has helped, he still comes running to me when I get close to the pen but I suspect he always will, he has imprinted on me.
Easter when you are alone is another holiday that gets ignored, but I think I will go put a half recipe of hot cross buns in the bread maker, they are not too bad on calories! Better then shoveling out the barn! I was looking up Easter recipes for veggie recipes and came across this link
If you pick and choose there are quite a few healthy recipes or ones that can be easily converted. Maybe I was hungry but most sounded delicious.
Some pictures for you, not many but a few
First the three lambs born first, they were joined in the pen today, I am waiting a few days before adding Arya, she needs more alone time with her lamb.
Rita’s lamb, he is very handsome!
He was cold and shivering so I quickly made him a sweatshirt jacket, they are made from a sleeve. He however is a very large lamb, so it is snug! Looks like I got more iodine on his legs then his belly button, got a lot on me too.
Rita and best dressed lamb
A view of some of my very wet pastures, still some snow in the foreground.
Well time for hot cross buns! Have a great Easter!