Monday, April 14, 2014

Catching Up! :-)

I must apologize over my lack of posting during the last few weeks.  My family and I were actually in a car accident five weeks ago and I sustained some injuries.  I am on the mend now and I have definitely been learning some lessons in patience and thankfulness.  Our life has been moving at a slower pace, and I'm not able to do all I'd like to do, but there is still life going on around me and thankfully I'm still able to capture it with my camera and share it with you! :-)

An Orchid

I've never had an orchid before!

A friend from high school came to visit me last month after the accident 
and brought this beautiful one to me.

I've really enjoyed it and I've watched several new buds bloom.

Update on the Ducks

If you remember my daughter got Donald and Daffy, the little mallard duckings, back in October.

She raised them in a pen until they were old enough to fly and then we let them free range with the chickens.  Just a few weeks after their first "Ducks Day Out", Daffy flew off and never returned.
But, Donald, has hung around.

We've decided he thinks he's a chicken. ;-)
 They've all gotten along just fine for months.
He particularly likes to follow Taylor Swift, my Austrolorpe, around.
We hardly ever see one of them without the other.

But then, two things happened this week.
One was so neat and one was so very sad.

Mr. H. came in a few days ago and said, "You don't have a chicken right now that lays white eggs, do you?"  I said, "No, what are those?"

You guessed it!  Duck eggs!  Donald isn't a boy after all. ;-)

Unfortunately, also this week (and I'm sure it's NOT a coincidence)
right after Donald (Daisy? haha) started laying eggs
the chickens started to peck at her.

Mr. H. found her yesterday morning huddled against the back of our house 
seemingly lost and disoriented.

Her eyes had been pecked out so badly that we couldn't even really see them. :-(

Mr. H. applied some ointment to them and we put her in her little wading pool.

She seemed to be doing okay.

And the chickens were minding there own business.

But then, this morning, Mr. H. caught Carrie Underwood, the Americauna,
pecking at the poor duck's eyes again so he moved her, the old little pet porter that she has been laying her eggs in and her wading pool into our front yard fenced in area so the chickens can't get to her.

We are hoping she will recover.
We're just going to keep a close watch on her and give her the best care we can.

Of course Miss Daisy is very concerned and I have to almost drag her back inside after she goes out in the front to potty. :-)

It's always something around here! ;-)

Photography Contest

Last summer I entered a photo contest in The Old Farmer's Almanac. 
In August I found out that my picture had been selected as one of the top five,
but I never heard anything else and had pretty much forgotten all about it.

Then in March of this year I got an e-mail from The Old Farmer's Almanac letting me me know that I had won first prize!  A few days later I received The All Seasons Garden Guide, turned to page 102 and saw my picture of Loretta!  How cool?

I also received a garden hod for winning first prize. :-)

Signs of Spring

Early Spring Garden

Our potato plants are looking good and I'm hoping we'll have a good harvest in a few more weeks.

The onion tops are starting to fall over,
so I know they're almost ready.

I think I'll give them until the first of May 
and then I'll harvest and cure them.
I only planted one set this year and really wish I'd planted more.

We've had lots of lettuce!

And the radishes did really well.  
Again, I wish I'd planted more!

We haven't put any of our summer plants in the ground yet, but we'll get around to it.
I'm hoping to be able to garden again in just a few more weeks. :-)

Because you know...
"In springtime, at the end of the day, you should smell like dirt." :-)

Merle Wins Big

Spring time means stock show time around here and this year my daughter showed her Duroc Merle.

He started out back in November not much bigger than his feeding trough.

But he grew and grew.

At weigh in he was 238 pounds and looking really good.

We had high hopes for him,
but you never know what the competition will be like
or what the judge will think.

Resting up before the show.

And there they go!

Look at that show girl!  Keepin' one eye on the judge. :-)

Merle did really well in the ring, too. 

And that right there is the smile of getting penned!  She's in the top three!

Merle placed second and we were all so happy!

Even little bro was proud.

Momma and Daddy were pretty excited, too!

Two days later was the premium auction and time to get all cleaned up and ready again.

And Merle did great!  He earned the big bucks for my daughter.

A lot of hard work paid off.

A big hug to say good bye.
And always a few tears.

Merle was a good pig.