It was a typical lazy day at the Neophyte homestead. I was allowed to sleep in until 630am. Morning chores were laid back,merely watering seedlings, adjust light, feeding and watering the brooding chicks, and make breakfast for the family plus one pre-teen guest.
It was such the easy going morning that I actually had plenty of time to play around with my husband. (I will allow a gutter thought moment for you, but then please move on) we laughed and were ornery in play. The kids flung the doors to the house wide open, and ran through and around like mad men. They were loud and joyous and only rarely did someone get mad or cry.
My morning chores took me outside, to feed the sheep and goats. I added more water to the cattle tank and fed and watered the chickens, gathering eggs along my way. The sound of a grinder on metal played harmoniously in the background (and no I wasn't listening to Static X). Husband was fixing the cellar door, that at some point during the winter, broke its hinges. I wrote down a list of things to pick up at the hardware and farm stores.
We checked on propane, and discovered a nest with several chic-a-dees newly hatched on top of the gauges. I laughed, and remembered the first time I had every saw these baby birds. I thought a chicken had bred with a duck, they were so odd looking. We managed to check the gauges without disturbing the nest too much, and mother bird was seen later flying in and out of the propane tanks cover.
The cows were very cooperative, Murrial came when called and when she spied that treat bucket, leaving poor Courage to wonder why her mommy has to leave her for 12 hours a day. Mama was just as easy, as I stood out in the field yelling "MAMA!" like a lost child, she quickly followed her training, and was in the barn, ready to work. Undies has grown use to his mother leaving, but he knows where he can go to at least see her and talk to her throughout the day. Donkey the Sheep has taken on the role as babysitter for Courage. When mom's away, Courage takes solice in the large fluffy pillow the trots along side her.
Milk was then skimmed, and husband and I took a break from the outside work, to shake a jar of cream into butter as we walked along the property discussing the issues at hand. We thin there is a disease in the chicken coop. One that the adult birds are immune to but the chicks are not. We have lost all of our laying chicks to it, so I new place, and new tractor is in the works. I looked through my homesteading books, but there was nothing in any of them about a tractor. It's a good thing I married whom I married, he already knows what he wants to do and doesn't need no stinkin' book to tell him what is right.
With the butter shaken to its appropriate consistency, I strained, chilled and rinsed it, before storing it back into the fridge. Then made lunch for every one, while I did dishes and laundry. Then Large and I headed into town. The store didn't have everything on my list and we had to venture to three different stores to get everything. Once we returned home, my little brother was here, and he and husband had dragged the welder out. I handed over the brackets, and was rewarded with a good ribbing from husband and brother.
I grabbed hog panels to put into the garden. Oh the wonders that is the Claw. I broke up the hard soil, and tied the hog paneling in place. My little brother helped me, he is such a good thing to have around. He help me plant 15 pole bean plants that I had started in the house. We water and mulched and watched as the wind beat them against the hog panel. I then weeded the onions and grape vines, and the click click hiss of the welder played in the background.
Husband finished welding the new hinges on, and gave the boys gray primer to paint the door. They did so with enthusiasm and vigor. They were actually being allowed to spry paint something, and mom wasn't going to jump on them for doing so.
It was then declared hat we were going to fence in the garden and orchard, this way we could still have cows in the front yard. I mean I do have a reputation to protect. Fencing was gathered from various spots of the homestead, leftovers from this and that. And stretched to see where it fit. The goat pen was then dismantled, as it floods so much to be unusable. T-post were pulled and a gate removed, then put into place in their new home around the garden. Things were stretched, holes were dug, and posts pounded into the ground. Then we had to remove Mama from the area. She is always up for a good chase, and seems to become a youngster once again. Donkey and Courage however where left until later. With the fence up, they were waiting at the new gate to be let out.
By now it was getting dark, dinner was made as mud covered children drudge through the house. They were promptly washed, fed and put to bed. Then I went out and milked two cows. Husband and I pushed the welder inside, then I strained and refrigerated the milk. Content of the amount. By 11 pm, were were finally able to remove out boots and lay down.
It was a good day.