…especially at feeding time!
…especially at feeding time!
That’s Ivy’s new announcement that precedes everything from information about what she’s been doing, what her imaginary friend is planning on doing or just letting me know that she said “excuse me” to a chicken and it moved out of her way.
They have been named Seed (the boy on the left) and princess (the girl on the right) Ivy and Clara haven’t loved them enough to wear their feathers off yet but I think they are getting there!
You know those days when you lose your sheep… …but you don’t know it until your neighbor calls to say they are in his yard but he can’t help you because he’s going to the dentist and then you have to walk them home through the fields with a two year old on your shoulders a bucket of corn in your hand while cajoling your four year old the whole way and then when you’re almost home the two year old grabs the electric fence while you are holding her other hand, which is an effective way to test the fencer but a really bad idea and then when you get all the way home you find out that your most wonderful dog has eaten a gigantic pile of dog food out of the bin while you were gone because some innocent looking girl… … left the pantry door open and the lid off the dog’s food and after puking the dog and monitoring her water all day and listing to the request of “Dammit Mom I need some ketchup please.” and loading sheep to take to the butcher in the dark, your husband asks if you want some help putting the girls to bed and the combination of the day and the rampant hormones and the lack of sleep from the night before sends you off into something that’s like hysterical laughter but maybe is just hysterics, you know those days?
Yeah, that’s the kind of day I had.
I’d like to leave you for the night with words of wisdom from Great Big Sea, “…it’s a double edged knife but there’s always tomorrow…”
Cheers to tomorrow, I’m going to bed!
Once again we were hit with a nasty flu bug here.
Except this time it was really nasty and it got me the worst.
Without my Mom to step in to take care of me, and the kids, and the pigs, and the sheep, and the chickens, and the other chickens, and the ducks, and the dogs, and the quail I’m not sure what would have happened but it would have been really ugly.
I know this for sure because by Friday I was feeling well enough to brave a few hours of the day on my own.
They didn’t go well.
During rest time Ivy didn’t rest.
Instead she gave a lamb a bath in the yard.
There are so many things wrong with that I can’t even talk about it.
I’m just thankful we seem to be back to normal.
Another Halloween has come and gone and I can’t say that I’ve converted into a fan.
There have been Halloween’s in the past that were worse.
-There was the year my roommate got into a bar fight and got punched in the face. She only weighed about 100 lbs.
-There was the year I got food poisoning. Thankfully that coincided with the year the swim team was stalking the streets of Stevens Point looking for the wrestling(?) team over some infraction I have since forgotten but it involved a lot of crying girls. I missed it all and only heard about it the next day, no big loss.
-There was the year I tried to avoid all Halloween related activities. Piper as a very large puppy gave me a black eye that night.
Last night while there were no catastrophe’s I’m not sure the amount of fun had was worth… well, all the rest of it.
The problem stemmed from the fact that I have a three year old. (If you are unfamiliar with daily life with a three year old or need a refresher Motherhood Uncensored described it fairly well today in Congrats on your 3-year old!) The three year old had a problem with her costume. It started about an hour before we were reading to go trick or treating and it went like this…
I don’t want one. I do want one. I want to be Pooh. I want to be a fairy. I want to be a princess. I want to be a fairy princess. (At this point I gently nudged us away from the princess line of thought since in the hours before trick or treating I stepped on and smashed her crown, shhhhh don’t tell!) Fairy. I don’t want wings. I don’t want a skirt. I don’t want a wand. I do want all those things. No, I want flowers not a wand. I want all the flowers. I want no flowers. I don’t want shoes.
… get the picture?
Meanwhile I was dressing Clara. She doesn’t talk. Some days I love that about her.
Finally I assembled an uncooperative lamb and a fairy in the yard: As I took pictures of the girls in the yard (quickly before someone decided to take her wings back off) I discovered something. Both real sheep and pretend sheep take about two minutes once they hit our property to get burrs in their wool.(No Clara is not picking her nose in all these pictures she’s picking the scab from getting a gigantic sliver in her face after falling in the garden, but that’s a different story)
As I deburred Clara we waited for John. We were waiting because, as everyone knows, the best time to butcher sheep is just before you go trick or treating with your kids…at the last minute he came running to the house changed his clothes looked at me and said, “Now, do I have any blood on my face?” I tried to convince by color blind husband that this was the one night it really didn’t matter… He didn’t care, something about real blood vs. fake blood… in any case we loaded up and headed into town.
When we got there the girls had an hours worth of fun filling their buckets full of candy. That night while John was back outside skinning sheep in the dark (talk about creepy Halloween activities) and I was putting Ivy to bed I tried to decided if it was worth it.
You know, I’m still not sure, but I can tell you with out a doubt that I love mini Milky Ways!
Ivy has already put Clara in training, which is only right, she is the big sister after all.
Some of the things Ivy has been training Clara to do I could do without: high pitched squeaking at the dinner table, yelling nonsense words in the backseat of the truck, and Clara really didn’t need her sister telling her that dog food is delicious.
With other things it seems like Ivy might be trying to help. The best example of this is trying to teach Clara sign language. We taught Ivy signs when she was a baby, loved the results and so are trying to do so again with Clara. The trouble is that Ivy is “helping.” Sometimes she helps by giving Clara what ever it is she wants, without being like mean ol’mom who waits for a sign. But perhaps most frustrating is her tendency to make up random hand motions for Clara and pretend they are signs. I’m hoping Clara will be able to pull something useful out of the whole experience but my hopes are dimming as time goes on.
Of course there are other things that Ivy is training Clara in that are truly helpful. Ivy teaches her how to play somewhere else while I’m cooking dinner, they are working on how to walk, and like every good Tom Sawyer Ivy is teaching her about her new job.
Ivy loves it when Clara comes out to check on the sheep with her, and because she is with her big sister Clara loves it too!
So given all the training Clara’s had recently I shouldn’t have been surprised when I realized throughout the day that the “BAAS” Clara was producing weren’t at all random…… she was looking for sheep!
Last week our sheep grew bored with things around here and six of them went on a little walkabout. A very nice farmer up the road (two miles up the road) found them and helped to get them back. Since then we’ve been beefing up fences and keeping a closer eye on them.
To be totally correct Ivy has been keeping a closer eye on them. Her new job is to check to make sure the sheep are still here. The first few days every hour or so I would ask if the sheep were still here and she would go running out the door to check. Now I don’t even have to say anything, she just wanders over to the gate and looks for sheep. In addition to that she usually stays on the gate contentedly visiting with the sheep for a long time before coming back with her report. Ivy’s new job makes me happy becuase it gets Ivy out of the house doing something by herself. Fortunately Ivy likes her new job too. It is important to know if your sheep are where you left them and Ivy feels special that she’s been given an important job. Perhaps it makes the sheep happy too, I’m not sure. Do they like bubbles?
Yesterday I went to help my cousins Sue and George with their sheep. There were nine of us working yesterday, if you count Clara, which you really shouldn’t. Activities ranged from trimming hooves, worming, and vaccinating sheep to hydrating the sheep catchers, making lunch and watching Clara, which is why she doesn’t get to count as a helper. I believe Sue said that we worked with about 150 ewes and their lambs, (but she can correct me if I’m wrong!) a big work day but one I try to help out with every year.
I like to help out for quite a few reasons:
- George and Sue are always willing to help us out so it’s always good to reciprocate so they don’t just laugh next time we ask if they will come down with their weed wrench for the day and teach us more about building fences.
-Ten of the sheep got to come back to our house when we were done to inhabit our pastures for the summer.
-Nobody else lets me give them injections.
-I do not believe I am alone in thinking there is something fun/satisfying in being able to catch a sheep and move it somewhere else, don’t ask me why, but don’t knock it ’till you’ve tried it!
You see it just so happens that I hate wearing shoes, but not as much as I hate wearing socks, and so I go barefoot when possible. This means that I frequently get harassed about going barefoot, or wearing flip-flops in November,or about how I’m going to hurt myself, or get tetanus, or whatever the person harassing thinks is the biggest icky danger out there. I of course think I’m completely reasonable in my shoe choices or lack there of, but when I watch George work I realize that it’s all relative. Yesterday I wore tennis shoes, with socks. * All the pictures in this post (except my bare toes) were taken by my Aunt Helen who added photo journalist and weeding to her list of chores yesterday. Thanks for letting me use the pictures Helen!*
** It seems according to both my spell checker and Websters dictionary that barefeet is not a real word. I decided I don’t care, it should be and I’m using it anyway!**