This is the story of a homeschooling city girl, trading in her Saks 5th life of luxury for farm tack and homesteading! My family, new farm critters and I will share our successes, failures and crazy stories during this new chapter of life!

Sunday, January 16, 2011

New milking goats!!

We are thoroughly enjoying Joy and Bella, our newest additions to the farm!
They are Saanen Goats, and Joy is currently giving us almost a gallon of milk... and she arrived less than 24 hours ago!

Snowmageddon 2011

During Atlanta's Snomageddon 2011, our animals made their own plans.
Our chickens stayed in their coop.  They had no desire to get out and get wet in the cold snow and ice.  They never received the memo that during the freezing cold, their egg production should slow!  No one could come and pick up eggs, so our refrigerator became overrun by yummy, huge, brown and white, healthy chicken eggs!  We certainly didn't complain- and we ate our fair share of eggs over the snow break!  It's too bad Io isn't milking yet, because we did run out of milk during this time!

A snow and icicle covered Io paced restlessly, and slept where ever she could find a dry spot.  She pulled hay out of her bale and laid in it.  She paced in circles under a tree, and laid in the spot she eventually cleared. 

Astro also had no plans on leaving his pen.  When Dan opened his stall door, he looked at us like we were nuts, and turned his back to us.  I can't really say I blame him.  There was a lot of snow.

The pygmy goats stayed in their pen, with no desire to stomp in the snow.  Tumnus is still too small to venture out, and hawks have taken up residence in the top of the tree inside the goat/chicken yard while the snow covers their usual food choices.  He would easily get carried away, so he stayed inside with his mom.

Here are some pictures of our winter wonderland on the farm.

A Baby is Born!

That Monday began like any other day.  The husband leaves for work, and I get bundled up and head out for farm chores.  But when I got outside, I had a beautiful surprise waiting for me!

Ms. Macready, one of our two pregnant pygmy goats, has her baby!

Meet Tumnus, our newest baby boy!
Born January 3rd, 2011 (or January 2nd, overnight!)

He is playful and wonderful.  His favorite activities include chasing our Bantam chickens (who are not much smaller than he is!), pestering his mother for fun, butting his mates and pretending he already has his horns, and, as pictured below, chewing on coats and sleeves!


Saturday, January 1, 2011

The 1,000 pound Christmas gift!

We told our kids their Christmas gift was arriving 2 days before Christmas, by delivery.  The poor souls waited patiently for the FedEx truck to come.

When this pulled in our driveway...

... they were a bit confused!

Meet Io, our new family cow, with her previous owner Brad Burton.  If you ever need a cow, CALL HIM!

Io has blended right in here.  She already knows that we keep her feed in the tack shed.  Here she is, waiting not-so-patiently for her breakfast!

Io is due with her first calf in June, so we will be able to start milking her after that!

Land Updates

We recently hired the sweetest man (James) to clear the privet from our farm!  When we moved in, there were a million things to do to make the farm functional (the barns were falling apart, the fence wouldn't keep anything in, becuase the wires were either missing or on the ground in most places- in other places, the fence was just non-existant, etc)... but one of the biggest issues was that the wooded section of the property (about 1/2 of the acreage) was so dense with privet, you couldn't even tell where the property began and ended!
This is a picture of my kids enjoying the lot after the clearing...

This is a picture of James, the bush hogger.  He is adorable!!

A gorgeous rainbow we saw while admiring the property!

My cute front porch...

Dan and I had to repair the fences.  I had already helped him dig about 10 holes in Georgia clay mud while building Astro's pen (see older post).  I had no desire to help him with a man powered auger while digging the 70 holes we were going to have to dig for this fence!
Dan got an early Christmas gift!  I surprised him with a Kubota with an auger.

My hottie husband with a chainsaw...

Dan's supervisor (Astro) watching his fence building techniques

Our "come-a-long" and fence stretcher

Dan and Alex hanging the gate at the back of the pasture

 Astro is extremely happy to have the whole pasture for grazing!


Well, since I last posted, we've had 8 eggs hatch, with many, many more scheduled to hatch in the next week!  Most of the eggs we bought (ALL the duck eggs and ALL the turkey eggs) weren't fertile.  Then other eggs we bought were lost in the mail for a number of days, so they didn't hatch either.  Some of our silkies hatched, and we now have 4 Old English Game chickens from a neighbor's eggs.  A Leghorn just hatched a moment ago, and another has pushed its beak through the shell!  This is a video of one of our baby chicks, moving in its shell...  so cool!!
And this is an adorable video of one of our baby chicks hatching!

After the baby chicks hatched, our chihuahua Stonewall refused to leave their side.  He is the most amazing mother hen!
Here he is with a brand new chick, checking it out...

We just finished moving our first hatches out to the chicken coop. They are in a wired off section of the chicken coop, trying to adjust to the cold temperatures!!  Look how they're all bundled up!  Can you believe how BIG they've gotten?