Sunday, August 28, 2011

Those cowsies

Ah, farm life! You certainly have a way of keeping people on their toes!

Tonight, I milked the cows for a friend. The actual milking session went great! But it all started while trying to get the girls back into their pasture. While Mom and I tried to get Miss Mattie through the gate, we left Opal to finish off the grain in the stanchion bins. She wanted more. So she took matters into her own hooves. Walking back up to the milking parlor, I saw the cow tail in the work shop doorway. AAAHHH!!! All that to say, the cow tossed aside the calf manna and the pig feed and went straight to the source of her joy and gluttony - the feed bags. 50 pounds of sheer delight and it was all hers for the taking! We saved the feed, if you're worried about that. She only got a couple mouthfuls. So we saved the grain and got the cow safely out of mischief's way.

But we weren't finished yet.

Earlier that morning, the heifers decided to make a run for it. Easily bribed back into their pasture with food, they were put into a different pasture that isn't so easy to escape. Now Mom and I are doing the cow chores which includes bottle feeding the summer calf. She's in a pen in the pasture that the heifers are in. I think that they still remember using a bottle because, my goodness, they were dead set and insistent that they were to get some of the milk. Try playing keep-away with an animal that is much bigger than you. It's impossible. They will win unless you outsmart them. So that's what I did. I outsmarted a cow. Two of them, actually. They really like hay. I just chucked a couple of cubes to them on the other side of the pasture and around the corner. Bwahaha! The were duped into my trick!

Anyway... that was my evening. How was yours?

Monday, August 15, 2011

Designing

Last year, I blogged about an upcoming ball - Victoria and Albert. I wanted to make her yellow dress from her coronation ball, but there was a minor problem - I can't wear yellow. And the design of that dress is a bit young for me too...

Faced with my dilemma, I needed to draw inspiration from somewhere else. While browsing on my sisters' book shelves, I found a coloring book. This coloring book to be exact:


I found different skirts and bodices that I really liked, but nothing ever really struck that 'magic' chord. I was able to pull bits and pieces from different dresses, but I would have to get at least five different patterns to get the separate parts for just the bodice. Then a friend showed a pattern to me: the 1860's ball gown bodice by Truly Victorian. It was the closest to perfect it could get. And it would work with the skirt that I really liked! So, without further ado, I give you:
The sketch for my ball gown!
I'm going to the fabric store this afternoon to seek inspiration for colors and embellishments. This is going to be fun! :D

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Catching up

Yes, I know most my recent posts (albeit sparse) haven't been about farming... or farm life... or animals... or adventures... To put it simply - it's been crazy this summer. Between doctor appointments, 'normal' life, and participating in a friend's wedding, things have been hectic to say the least. Everyone seems to be going a thousand different directions all the time. How do we keep up with everything?! We don't. Example: yesterday morning, we got up at 6 and quickly got ready to be out the door by 7:15 at the latest to be at the orthodontist by 8. We came on the wrong day. Wrong week actually. An entire week early to the appointment. :sigh:

Back to farm life! Earlier this summer we did a round of meat chickens. Those are long gone and ever so tasty, but we still have turkeys! :) The chickens are happy pecking around and running for their lives from the 6 year-olds. The llamas got sheared the week after Memorial Day; don't worry - all bad haircuts do grow out. The garden is growing okay for the cooler weather that we've had. Actually, the lettuce is doing really well. Do you know any creative ways to serve lettuce besides a green salad? I don't either... We cleared out a couple hundred Christmas trees from the South field to make a pasture, a new barn (still in the decision process of that), bigger garden, and an herb garden. Plans for the herb garden are going slow. Maybe it's because a thousand other things are demanding my attention.

I wish summers could be like they used to be - care free and forever. Nothing going on, no running around, no chasing your own tail. Just chilling, recovering, regrouping for the coming school year. By the time the summer ended, you were ready for structured activities. Now, you don't have time for a breather...

So here's to August! May you last forever!