Thursday, March 20, 2008

Coming full circle...

I think most of you know where I've come from... yes, the city. I hadn't even a notion of what it took to run a farm. I had not a clue what it took to stock my grocery store. But from a very young age, I have had a very strong affinity for the country life. When I was a little girl, my favorite story book was a National Geographic kids book called "Cowboys." My Mom can attest to this! She read it thousands of times. My favorite animal has always been a pig. I have no idea where it came from, it was just what I was drawn to. Around the same time of my life, I would steal my sister's John Denver 45 record and take it to my room, put it on the player and take my place on top of my bed.... jumping my heart out to "Thank God I'm a Country Boy" -- Sis is nodding her head right now. As a teenager, I adored country music, wore Wrangler jeans, learned to line dance, and pretended to enjoy rodeos. So is it really that much of a surprise that I have ended up where I am? I don't think so. In fact, I so appreciate the Lord allowing me to live out my childhood dreams out here in the country with a farmer for a husband and chickens in the yard. In honor of yester-year, I downloaded that John Denver song a few weeks ago. I played it for my daughter, and yup, you guessed it-- "PLAY IT AGAIN MAMA! AND TURN IT UP!" Gladly my dear, gladly. Here are few lyrics for your enjoyment.

Well life on the farm is kinda laid back
ain't much an ol country boy that he can't hack
its early to rise and early in the sack
Thank God I'm a country boy
well the simple kinda life never did me no harm
raise me a family and workin' on the farm
days are all filled with an easy kind of charm
Thank God I'm a country boy

City folk drivin in a black limousine
A lot of sad people thinkin "Now that's a mighty keen!"
son let me tell you now exactly what I mean...
thank God I'm a country boy!

Saturday, March 8, 2008

More Dull Moments

please read the "Dull Moments" entry first...

The morning immediately following the coyote incident started out "normal." I had a morning out planned, so the kids were at a play date and I was home, busy, doing my chores in peace and quiet. About 1030, Stephen and I searched our pasture for eggs. We have to do this daily, since we have free range chickens (don't tell anyone!) and not every gal goes back to the coup to do her business. We brought them in... Just 2 short hours later, my daughter went on an egg hunt. I was putting on my shoes when she had already made it down to the coup. I was yelling her name, because I saw she had left the pasture gate ajar, and the dog just doesn't always behave when she is in the pasture. Daughter didn't respond... then I see her running up to the house screaming, "Mommy! There's an owl in the coup!" I fly down to the gate, tell her to stay there--- not an owl... but the biggest HAWK I had ever seen was in the chicken coup, perched on the wood post where they sleep. There was one of the Rhode Island Red hens squawking up a storm in there, trying to get out, while the hawk just looked on... I let the hen out, and saw a frightening sight. Feathers flying everywhere and another poor little hen, who we admit was the crazy one of the bunch, was dead. I screamed and ran... I was very scared, because there was not another chicken in sight. No feathers, no nothing. Just that other red hen, who ran to the woods when I let her out. I got Stephen, and after some coaxing, got the hawk out of the coup. It wasn't easy. Then the burial. That wasn't easy. Then the thought that we had no chickens. That wasn't easy.... But about 5 pm, sure enough, the rest of the pack showed up at the water cooler! Really! So we still have eggs, and we still have 7 chickens...
Life in the country seems dull and boring to most people. They wonder what I do without high speed internet and satellite cable. They honestly believe that I must have nothing to do during the day. For one, I am a mother, so I'm never bored. For two, people just don't understand that there is always something happening on a farm. Be it a tractor getting stuck somewhere, phone lines being dug up and cut by a tractor, or happenings with animals... dull moments just are few and far between. So for those of you who have been asking for new posts- I hope my dull moments in the country made your city day!

Dull Moments

this is taken from my journal entry on March 3, 2008

Today started at 12:30am. Gannett had just climbed into our bed and was getting himself and his Pooh Bear situated. As I started to try to drift off back to sleep... I heard what I first thought was a dog howl, followed by several other dogs barking. My first thought of what was going on was that the neighborhood dog howl phenomenon was happening--- oh yeah, I don't live it a neighborhood anymore. Stephen LEAPS out of bed and flies to our french doors... Mallory tears through the house barking. I said, "STEPHEN!" He immediately responds with, "Honey, its OK." How did he know that when I said his name in that terrified voice, that is what I needed him to say? He ran to our front door and said one word that sent my heart racing--- "Coyotes."
We have 3 precious baby goats that we are raising to be Sweetums' (the jersey calf) buddies in the years to come in the pasture. Esther and I bottle feed them 2x a day and she carries them around our yard all day. They follow us everywhere. My heart was pounding because coyotes are the #1 predator of baby goats in our area.
I stood at the french doors of our room watching Stephen run out in his boxers with a lantern to see what exactly was going on. I tried to comfort Mallory, but her Wyoming instincts knew what was out there. The howling has stopped. In the lantern light, I saw Sweetums walking up slowly to the gate ... then I saw each of our 3 babies all coming to see what Stephen was doing at such an odd hour. He pretty much knew at this point the coyotes had been some ways off from our yard. He put the babies in their kennel and locked the door for the rest of the night... I wouldn't have gone back to sleep otherwise. We got back in bed, Gannett snuggled down close to me... my heart rate began to come down, and I fell back asleep knowing all was well on the farm..... for then at least. (see the next post)