Memorial Day found us at my 92 year old Grandma's. She lives with her daughter who is my Aunt Jeanne. Because our Uncle Warren and Aunt Linda and cousin Ariel were visiting from Arizona it turned into a family reunion. We listened to the National Anthem, and some of us sang along! We also sang a grace ("For This Food We Thank Thee Father") for the meal. Our cousin Shannon made a touching tribute to those present who have served for our country. What a blast to be with so much family!! Shannon and Chrissy (my cousin and his wife who own the property where Grandma and Jeanne live--and live on the same acreage) took the kiddos on a farm tour at the neighbors. There were baby pot bellied pigs, baby calves, baby goats, and chickens. The little piggy's were adorable!!
My hubby and son spent most of the day fishing. They went out in the boat and this time Jason (my husband) caught most of the fish! Jadon was excited for his Dad. This Mom loves the father son bonding they do while fishing!!
We've also been keeping busy with our Border Collies. The puppies are getting big and soon they will all be in their new homes. It's a rewarding job and I'm thankful we, as a family, are able to work together to produce healthy Border Collie's for people who love the breed. One time my Mom was with us when we met a family who would add one of our Border's into their life. She remarked "Are all the people your puppies go to that nice?" And I told her, "Yes". It's so awesome to connect and get to know a little about the people who make our puppies a part of their family!
After moving to Missouri from Arizona and being a lover of the heat, this past warm winter was a welcome wave of comfort. Moving to Arizona was a dream come true for me, a smalltown northeast Missouri native. It was hard to leave the desert, but I wanted Jadon & Kylee to experience some of the good ol' mid-west childhood that I enjoyed.
We've been in Missouri for three years now. The first winter was COLD and snowy. However, the last two winters have been mild. This past winter, we had an ice storm after an unusually warm February. A lot of trees were downed. One of the big oak trees, out in the pasture, split in half. Jason and the kids have been building a tree fort/deer stand on the half of the tree that fell. It is about 6 feet off of the ground. The other half is standing and ALIVE!
The sheep have almost finished springtime lambing, except for one ewe who keeps getting bigger & BIGGER by the day! We check on her many times- morning, afternoon, and evening. Last year she had a single, we are wondering if she is going to have triplets this year!? If so, it will be the only set of triplets born this spring.
Barn kittens and house kittens are scurrying around-- they're so cute! And, the puppies are growing fast! Almost too fast- if you ask me. Only a few more weeks and they will be in their furever homes. We have so enjoyed watching them transform into wiggly, waggly, little furballs! Jason installed a doggy door that goes from the homeschool/game room out into a fenced off area of the yard. The puppies are just starting to learn to move the flaps and go in and out.
There are lots of projects going on around the ranch along with daily chores-- and that keeps us all busy. Time has somehow been found to start herding training for Jake and a young lady came out to help halter train the yearling foal, Belle.
Fishing and swimming in the near-by river have been great fun already this spring! We've visited Grandma and fished at the pond there, too.
The kids have a lawn mowing job and they collect eggs from the hens and sell farm fresh healthy eggs. The baby chicks are almost ready to leave the barn and head to the coop. Jason is building a new coop like the one we had in Arizona. (I loved that coop!) Pictures will be posted once it's complete. The local hatchery, Cackle Hathchery, called to let us know the Guinea fowl we ordered will arrive later than originally scheduled- due to a hatching date change. In Arizona we ordered from Murry McMurray Hatchery and the baby chicks arrived in the mail. Those were exciting times! Now we are about 20 minutes from Cackle. We call our order in ahead of time and they have it ready for us when we arrive several weeks later for pick up.
We have had a fox problem lately. Just today, while we were out working in the yard one made off with a hen! Jason and the kids chased after it, but into the woods it went. 'Sly as a fox'! And brave! We are bringing home a livestock guardian puppy late summer. We have chosen the Maremma Sheepdog to be the farm guardian. We are condsidering bringing home two older pups to help us NOW! LGD's require training and cannot just be put out by themselves at a young age and expected to know how to fully guard. Therefore we are currently facing a very long drawnout battle with the local 'fox gang' while our LGD's mature.
To end on a positive note, my lovest is working on putting up Purple Martin houses. When I was a little girl my Dad had Purple Martin houses and I loved those birds! (I also love Barn Swallows, the Purple Martin's cousin, and we have plenty of those- they don't require special housing or care!) We are looking forward to becoming Purple Martin landlords. There is a lot to learn about these birds and it involves more than putting up houses and letting them be. They must be protected against Starlings, a non-native species who destroy eggs and young. The Purple Martin's earn their keep by eating BUGS! Go Martins!
Friday, we said good-bye to Dually, aka Max-E. He flew to Philidelphia International Airport & was picked up by his exceptionally wonderful new parents and drove home to Newark, DE.
There were many tears shed as this little fur ball had stolen our hearts with his wiggles, kisses, and whirlwind of total cuteness.
We were happy to see pictures and videos of him as he jumped, ran, and seamlessly settled right into his new home.
Saying good-bye is always hard, our heartstrings have been expanded to Delaware now.
Best to you, Max-E we know you've got it!!❤️🐾