Friday, April 29, 2011

I Am Here Today - Give Thanks

Wednesday was 4 " of snow and Thursday we reached 62 warm windy and I mean windy degrees. Today is might top out at 70 but we pay for it by winds clocking in around 48 miles per hour. It is hard to get outside work done when you can't keep on your feet. The country - strike that - make that the world has been hit with Mother Natures Hard Hands and we are not out of it yet...

This morning the weather guesser gave us here in Colorado all the up to date information on how to keep yourself safe now that we are in Tornado Season. Explain to me how those poor folks across the South were to keep themselves safe??? We do the best with can and hope that you make it through. We do the sit in the basement with head lamps on as we pray with all our might that this time we are spared and others do not suffer. It reminds me of when my boys would kick down an ant hill to watch them run and then rebuild (Yes, I explained to them that this was not a good thing to do) however I think in the long run it taught them that we are all ants. That forces greater then ourselves has complete control over when we are here or not - this is not meant to make you depressed but rather to remind yourself to live in THIS MOMENT and ENJOY those very small things that pass us by without a notice because none of us are to know when it will be our last day here.

Even thou the wind is already howling and the animals have hunkered down in their shelters I will go about celebrating those things that are right in front of me today and try not to be living in future worry.... What will be on your "Today I am Thankful" list? Mine was at 4 am that my sweet little goat bottle kids where so happy to see me as I walked into the barn this morning. They greet me with such love, need and tiny kisses that no matter so tired, slow or in pain I am it washes away all of that and fills me up with purpose and joy...

Today as the dye pots are bubbling away on the stove and I try to capture that perfect photo of what I have been working on into the wee hours of the morning I will post a sign to remind myself - I Am Here Today - Give Thanks

I also want to give thanks for all of you who take the time to read my silly posts and then comment on them - you add such joy to my day and I look foreword to reading your thoughts. You give me a touch stone when I have spent too much time in my brain stewing things over. I give thanks each day that I have an extended circle of friends who care about the goings on at this Funny Farm. I give Thanks for you!

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Easter Day for the Farm Girl

The morning started a bit rocky with Olivia taking her cast off again. That makes it four times this week. Then the bottle kids come unhinged because I made them wait a tad because I was leaving the farm and needed to feed them right before leaving which cost me two changes of clothing before I could step off the farm - Oh and Yes, Snow and bitter cold... Did the Easter Bunnies tail get frozen? I know my tail was frozen...

Then I was off to Nick and Brooke home for a wonderful time. The meal was ever so tasty - great ham, super potatoes, lip smacking asparagus and then they even made one of my fav's "White Peach Sangria"... Best of all was spending time with them and the ever funny Reese... Every minute was very special and went by too quickly.

Upon returning to the farm the bottle kids acted as if I was gone for days. They could not drink their formula fast enough and hated that I slowed them down... Did not need tummy aches because of being Piggies... Olivia managed to take off her cast while I was gone - so I will have to put my thinking cap on and try another prototype but my brain is mush for now and she is settled for the night.. I will give an extra bottle feeding during tonight to make up for what they missed while I was gone and to make sure they are not too worried that I will be gone again...

All in all a perfect Easter day for this Farmgal - all except the driving part with the nutters...
Thanks Family for a GREAT DAY and for the leftovers...

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Great Way To Start A Hard Working Day

Ready to start my Saturday with a great breakfast - Two over easy eggs from my sweet hens laid this morning, some great bacon from a local farmer - no nasty stuff in this yummy meat and then 3 small pancakes from my favorite pancake mix. That's right a mix and out here it is very hard to find so while shopping Friday morning I grabbed up the two boxes I found. The mix is called "Kodiak Cakes" and they are all natural and Tummy Yummy!!!

They also make a Brownie Mix which I have in the cupboard but not yet made - I am sure they are lip smacking too...

So now that I have a full tummy what is on the schedule today?? It is cold, gray and windy outside - not sure if I will spend much time out there. Maybe instead I will get to work inside. I started at the 2 am bottle feeding a roasted vegetable pasta sauce in the crock pot - smells delish. Then I started the deviled eggs boiling and finished them in the cold outside. Here is a tip I have found that works wonders - if you start you eggs in cold water with vinegar, salt and a lid. Turn on the head and bring to a boil. Then turn off heat and let come to room temp and if the weather is as cold as it is outside last night - just above freezing I put the pot outside with lid on and let it get cold outside. This morning I could peel the eggs without a hassle and they turned out just perfect.

I have been thinking of making some good old fashion cream puffs with a spoon full of strawberries. I am also making Rhubarb with Strawberries base which will go into the freezer because then on a whim I can make a cobbler, turnovers or even a roasted pork loin. This evening I will be making chicken thigh roladen with artichoke/herbed goat cheese filling. Again, most will go in the freezer.

So hope you had a great breakfast - your always welcome to eat with me but we do it early even before the roosters rise. Speaking of them I thought I found them a new home but the handyman who was going to take them spoke with his employer and she said "NO"... So I reminded my guys that it seems no one is excited about them so they better lay low and stay out of the hen house. I purchased an organic chicken at the market for the oven and wondered why I am spending money to feed my guys and spending more to put one in the oven??? I saw also on ETSY that folks are selling 10 rooster feathers for $6.00 - BOY, I AM STUPID!!! I tried to figure how much a bald rooster would net me - BOY, I AM IN THE WRONG BUSINESS......

Thursday, April 21, 2011

When No One Is Looking!!

As the wind howled all night again, even had snow scattering and blowing - I walked out to give the 2 am bottle and with all the noise the little bottle kids did not hear me. As I rounded the corner and slowly walked inside and what did I see but under the warmth of the heating lamb there was Olivia out front blocking any draft and all four of the kids snuggled behind her sound asleep... Not only is Opal being warmed by her mother but my three little bottle kids. I tell you it just surprised the heck out of me but made me so thrilled. Olivia had not caught sight of me yet and I just stood in amazement...

Just then Olivia saw me and quickly stood up on her three legs. She stood in front of the sleeping kids and gave me a look as if to say - "How did they get behind me"?? Suddenly the kids awoke and ran to me. Olivia came over to me and watch closely as I fed everyone in turn. She had to inspect each of the bottles and checked my hand to make sure that I was doing them right....

After the feedings the four of them started to play around the pen and Olivia quickly pushed them back to the corner as if to say "Back to bed - it is too early to be playing around"... The four of them quickly ran to the corner and stood. Olivia gave me a look like "Alright, you done your part now go". After saying good night to all the other mothers and babies and huge hugs to Chief I left the barn a bit lighter know that when no one is looking I do have someone looking out for my little ones...

Thanks Olivia.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Cracked Bottle and Knee Caps

Is there anything in life that duck tape will not fix?? At the 1 am feeding everything was going swimmingly and as I hung over the pen feeding Wynonna and Max and drifting off in my head of what work I be needing to get done in only a couple of hours. I noticed that Mishka was creepying up behind me to stand next to me and complain that she was no longer my one and only bottle kid even when she is far too old to be glued to my butt. She is not happy and is feeling displaced. Just as I was explaining to her that she really ought to have tried a bit more on considering being the Mother to Max - Wynonna smacked the bottle so hard in my hand that it went smashing into the cold hard metal pen and placed a cracked in the bottom. At that same moment for whatever reason Kate decided to plow into the side of Mishka which in turn had Mishka's hard head and horns ramming into the back of my knee's and before I could even think my knee's went into that same cold hard metal pen. After letting out a big scream and startling everyone in the barn I had to sit on the cold hard metal drum to gather my wits and to make sure no real harm came to my ever tender knee's... I finished the feeding barely as the bottle was leaking. I hobbled back to the house, took me two pain pills, found the duck tape to fix the bottle and then off to find the heating pad... By the time I got to my bed the body was aching and my mind thinking of all those childish squabbles these girls can get into over nothing - sound like anyone you know??

I remember at an Easter Dinner I was having at my house some 20 years ago I just made the silly comment "Mom always liked me more" when my two sisters came unhinged... I kept saying it was just a joke but my gosh - for years after that they would not give it up. It amazes me how some folks both two and four legged hold onto things way past their prime and waste so much of the present with little words and actions. I guess Kate and Mishka have something to work out but not at the cost of my knees...

So today's feedings will be interesting - down to one good bottle and another slowly leaking, stil only two hands and three hungry kids... I am not great at math but I will need more then duct tape to have this run smoothly.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Monday, Monday - what I do instead of painting my nails

Busy Sunday Night and Monday Morning Here!!! I was the worry wart that we all knew I would be... Checked on Goldie every two hours between the bottle feeding times just to make sure she was doing O.K. Her tiny voice was a bit horse because she was calling for me but just like with my human sons I had to sometimes let them cry a bit to learn they could settle themselves down and be just fine. Now, I admit I would sit outside their door and peek under the door along the floor just to make sure they were safe but as I have said many times I know this is for her own good as it was for my sons... I also started plucking a few more of the girls when I was in the barn this morning. It is like a sickness - once I start I can not stop.. My fingers take over my brain and before I know it I have finished two or three girls and I have been in the barn way too long... What I love about my crosses is they blow out their fiber just like Angora Bunnies. If you start them early they will allow you just to pluck off the fiber and that way you do not end up with second cuts or blunt ends which I feel do not draft as nicely. So I did Jill this morning and she was a dream to do however I had to do Rasputin because his fiber was being drug behind him along the ground. This was not going to be as easy as Jill. Being hopefully smarter then him I went to work. First I constructed a maze of pens which go to funnel him to where I want which at the end is a catch pen that I can squeeze the panels together if he gets a bit aggressive. Once I had him there it was slow breathing and talking softly. Yes, sometime it works as long as you do not have all the goat girls screaming for him like a rock star. Those girls - No Help!! As I went about getting his fleece is was anything but calm. So the panels gave him a nice hug to keep those huge horns from cutting me up. I admit it I am not into pain if I can help it. I took the best fleece, tried to clear up some of the peed on tags and boy spaces that no one needs or wants. Great however for the compost bin.. After I got most of him done I told him that we would call it a day because there is no need to over stress these big boys - not good for their tummies. When I opened the gates and let him out with the his pasture mates and llama's he turned and gave me a bit of a smile - as if to say "Wow, I can feel the air on my body - feels great". Now just so we do not have a snow storm hit he will keep that kind thought and we might be friends again. He is such an amazing boy but would hate to be on the wrong side of those horns. I bet your wondering what else is on the schedule for today? I have a dozen skeins of yarn dyeing on the stove. I finished packaging up the last of the felt shards, folded and stored away the goat towels and started on my own laundry, finished printing out goat baby pictures that will be tucked into customers packages. So all in all just a typical Monday with still the evening to come. What was your day like??

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Preschool for Goldie

We have all been in this position - it is time to send your little one to daycare or preschool. You prepared your little one, got everything ready and spent hours, days or maybe even weeks convincing yourself you where doing the right thing... You worried, cried, tried to come up with reasons not to do so but in your heart you knew it was best.... Now it has been over 20 some years since I had to do this with my two legged sons but today all those feelings came rushing back... Yes, this afternoon Goldie had to go out to the barn to start her life path as a GOAT!!! I gave her bottle to her in the barn and sat there while she got use to the sounds, smells and activity level. I then put her in the pen with Opal, Wynonna, Max , Olivia (which I had just reapplied a new cast on her leg which is doing well) and told Chief to sit and watch... I walked out of the barn and then stood outside the door just like I did all those years ago when I placed my oldest son Nick into his first day care. I stood holding my breath as if he could hear me and waited to hear him cry but Nothing!! Here I was doing the same thing but for a little goat baby... Motherhood never ends! I stood for about 10 minutes peeking in but out of sight of the babies to see what was going on. Just like in the human daycare the other goat babies sniffed her over (now I am not saying that the human kids sniffed Nick but you know what I mean), touched her to see what she was about and then went about their business of nibbling on the hay. Goldie looked around a bit lost but just like my son did Goldie immediately walked over to the group and started doing what they where doing... She did not even notice I was not in the room. I DID MY JOB CORRECTLY! As I walked back to the house I must admit I felt a bit rejected. Surely I was more important to my kids (both two and four) then just a meal provider. Did I not serve a more vital role then the maid, nurse and food service provider?? Then I remembered my job as a MOTHER is to make my kids stand on their own - understand that they have the tools to be separate from me and thrive. By the time I reached the shop door I had a big smile on my face - I heard in my brain "Good Job Grace" besides I will be back in four hours to do bottles all around. See for a while they will still need me for that but they also have each other and they are going to be just Great! Now it is time to do the bathroom floor goat towels, bleach the floor and put away the space heater. Preschool is now open and we all will be just fine.

Mixed Woods - LFF Seamus Yarn

Well the "Easy Weekend" has sold out while I was trying to post this offering also from my LFF Seamus. I love being with my animals but when I am not with them the second favorite place is being in the forest that resides on my farm. The bark of these mighty giants tell the stories of their life and struggles, of all the seasons that have come and gone - all the while watching over me with the strength I have come to depend on. I tried to place all of the wood tones that you will find in the forest into this yarn and keep the colors clear and crisp. The next to the skin soft Kid Mohair will be nothing but amazing for whatever project you decide to make - just remember the last offering went so quickly that I would hate for you to be left out. I have 12 skeins and they are listed in my Etsy store - just click here and you too can have some of the once in a lifetime fleece of LFF Seamus. Thanks to my dear customer Ruth for giving the other offering a great home with talented hands.

Newborn Organic Alpaca Hat

I love crocheting things but never seem to have those extra minutes to make something but while sitting up waiting to give another round of bottles to the goat babies I picked up a hook and some of my organic Alpaca yarn and went to work. In minutes this adorable newborn hat was done. So sweet if I do say so myself and now we just have to find that perfect princess to wear it. Know of anyone who would fit the bill??? It is like Cinderella - just the right girl will be the perfect fit...

I have just finished posting it on my Etsy shop - hope it finds the sweetest little head...

"Easy Weekend" - from the fiber of LFF Seamus

Amazing that it starts out first as the loving animal "LFF Seamus" - Yep, one of Devil Goat offspring but look at that incredible fiber, he did not get his mother attitude thank goodness.

Then with time, skill, and a bit of luck you get this - "Easy Weekend" 100% Kid Mohair Yarn. The yarn is next to the skin softness with a sheen that is a show stopper... I have placed 9 skeins up for sale in my Etsy Shop - remember we only get a Kid fleece once in the animals life time. I know he will keep the softness and sheen but never as fine as his baby fleece. Hope you give him a try.

Old School Yarn Making

Sometimes old techniques are amazing. With all the new ART Yarns around we sometimes forget what the old school simple styles of spinning and plying has to offer and should not be forgotten. I decided it was high time that we showed some of those off.

A fantastic stable yarn with character, texture and complexity without all the finger crossing, tongue biting and four letter words being shouted... Also, I do think some of the NEW Art Yarns look like either a cat had gotten into the yarn bag or had coughed up a nasty fur ball. This is a relaxing yarn to spin, paint and work with - Old School!

What you think??

Guilty Pleasure at 2:30 am - Thanks Kids!

Thought I would show you my set up at 2:30 am after feeding all the bottle babies and finds herself wide awake....

You are in my fiber processing room with my newest addition, a portable DVD player that the kids gave me for my birthday.

Here I am sitting on my vintage kitchen stool in front of my Patrick Green Electric Carder running Llama and Silk in stripes with variegated dyed Merino Lambs wool. I have my soft headphones on to hear all the juicy plot lines over the work horse carder. This is a perfect set up and I must admit I worked till 5 am making batts and watching great movies... THANKS again kids... For those who love vintage I have my large carder and picker on top of a 1940's pull out kitchen table. The table is able to handle the weight of the equipment and is the right height to work from. It also will not sway as the picker to swing which is very important. I am surrounded by baskets, boxes, sacks, drawers and shelves of fiber and add In's which means I do not have to go far to create.

Hope you enjoyed the mini tour - I promised a few folks to show them my set up and I will get to taking pictures of it all but here is the snippet of the fiber operation. Well now it is time to make the next round of bottles and to make this gal some breakfast. See what you miss when you sleep.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Mountainside Walk Handspun Yarn

It is hard to explain to someone who does not LOVE spinning but when life gets a bit much or I really need to find myself again I sit in front of my wheel and do what I call "Mindless Spinning" O.K. I heard everyone saying "Doesn't she always spin that way?" NO!! I do engage my brain often but this is a time when I let my fingers and feet just sing with the wheel and let the yarn show up. For those who do understand this then you will feel the love that went into this yarn. When I say love, I really mean it because I let go of whatever the world is stressing about, I put aside all those things that I am wishing to control but realize I have no control over and I just let it flow - the statement of "Being Here Now" is what always comes to mind. I attempt to do this at other times and fail more times then not but when I sit in front of my wheel it is like the world or worries falls away and I am "Being in the Now"..... Hope you like this yarn - I put 4 skeins up for sale in my Etsy shop - 100% Hand painted, Hand spun Merino Lambs Wool. It is next to the skin soft and would make a variety of projects for any skill level. Would love to hear what you think of this yarn..

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Goldie in the Kitchen

Remember when I told you about my unexpected guests last Friday - here is one of them Goldie... She is Lillie's little girl. You might see that she is Easter Chick Yellow - that was from the fluid that was on her for too long because the Mother did not clean her off. When I found her and brought her into the house she got a warm bath and shampooed her but the stain is here for awhile if not until she receives her first shearing... Goldie is strong, funny and full of excitement and most of all love. She snuggles for hours if I let her, she squeals when I leave her but settles quickly on her own. I have hopes to put her in the bottle kid pen this weekend if the weather would stay warm. She is the smallest of all the babies born and so I do not wish to risk her health just to get my bathroom back.

We walked a bit outside today but the wind came up and she chilled quickly. We came back into the house and in front of her space heater to warm up. Before I knew it she was fast asleep.

Hope you all will give Goldie a big friendly welcome - a rough start but she is a trooper.. Gosh I love my world - who else has a yellow baby goat in their bathroom??

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

My Fuzzy Inch Worm

Ever since I was a little girl I have loved those fuzzy caterpillars that would make their appears just as Spring was starting to shake off those somber days of Winter. I have fond memories of staying outside all day hunting for those bewitching fuzzy worms.

I would gently place one in the palm of my hand and giggle with delight as they inched across my skin. I could spend hours having them tickle my hand and wonder if they enjoyed it as much as I did??? I remember wishing to be one of them and spend my day wearing a splendid fuzzy coat with all the eye popping colors that I found on the different ones living in my garden. Such purpose they had in life and they got to do that with an amazing fuzzy coat. I also remember sneaking them into the house out of the eagle eyes of my Mother. I would bring in twigs, leaves and such and place them in my dresser drawer. I was mind full to leave the drawer open a bit as to give them light and air. There with my underpants and ankle socks lived a variety of fuzzy creatures that brought such joy to me every time I peeked inside and saw them moving around.

Fast foreword to today and I still get such delight when I find one. The other day one had made their way into the shop and onto my work clogs. The moment I saw it and squealed like that little girl of years gone by and had to gently pick it up and place it into my hand. I stood there watching it inch along my skin and giggled with each movement. I hate to say how long I stood watching this sweet little creature but it was like traveling in a time machine back to my childhood with all those feelings of hope and excitement. So I just had to create a yarn that would celebrate that magical creature...

So What Brings YOU Such Childhood Joy???

Still Making Room

Still cleaning in the shop and it is amazing what treasures I find - not sure how the yarn can move it's self around the shop with no concern for this mush brain who has enough trouble remembering where she puts her glasses all the time... Is it the yarn fairies who just wish to pull my chain or a customer who changes her mind or worse the early signs of old age? I blame the fairies... I only have two of these left so I am hoping they find a loving, talented home where they will not get lost in the shuffle and find their way into a special creation which will show off their complex colorway and ever so soft handle. So don't let the fairies get a hold of them again - SAVE THEM!!!

Monday, April 11, 2011

This Farm Gal Turned 52 - WOW

Sunday was a Great Day - It was my Birthday!! I made it one year round the sun and with all my faculties - at least I hope that is the case... I was so lucky to have my youngest son Conrad here which I had not seen since Christmas. I also had my oldest son Nick with his wife Brooke and their little boy Reese... The farm was all a buzz with great conversation, yummy food and Angel Food Cake with my 7 minute frosting. With the arrival of the two unexpected goat bottle kids my plans for getting work done before this day went out the window but around here plans are just guidelines. So taking a moment to collect myself before the family arrived I did my best to get things in some order. Babies got their bottles, chickens got their eggs collected and the rest of the farm had their food, water and instructions not to cause problems for the day. Well that would be asking for too much, Right! Olivia had to take her splint off so in my good clothes I had to climb in the pen and take her down and redo the splint but not really that big of a deal. The leg is healing but Olivia is getting really upset about having to be penned up and now has two bottle kids in the pen with her and her baby. Suck it up Olivia we all have to deal with things... We spent a lovely day together. The boys also put back the three large metal panels on the smaller barn that the wind had chucked all over the farm. I am so lucky for their help because Grace does not do ladders.. Reese had his first introduction to baby goats and he was excited to say the least. By the time the day was over and everyone had to return to their homes the farm was ready for the evening chores and a slower pace. Conrad presented me with the most charming Aloe Plant - he knows how much I love them and he found a special fellow to keep me company at the farm. The whole family rewarded my love of movies with a Portable Wide Screen DVD Player which is so exciting.. I am still reading the instruction booklet so I understand how to use it - you know me and techno things. They also replaced my "The Thing" movie that died and presented me with a cable show called "The Walking Dead"... So you know what I will be doing this week! I was pampered with a great meal and most of all time with my loved ones. Reese was such a joy even when he did not want me to touch him. He is an Aries just like me and we only wish to be touched when we say so - it is who we are and I never wish to push him. His parents reported he slept like a log after returning from the farm - all that country air and new adventures will do that to anyone. So this gal had a great Birthday and thanks her family with all her heart for sharing it with her...

Friday, April 8, 2011

Frantic Friday at the Funny Farm - You wont believe this!

Thursday I took down the last of the kidding pens because we finished that part of our year and I could not stand seeing the empty pen that Ebony passed away in.. Worked hard and raked out the barn of the old straw and poop... I was one tired and smelly gal. The bottle feeding on Wynonna is going great and I even got about 5 full hours of sleep last night on the couch... As I crawled off the couch this morning and made the warm bottle I struggled to get my tired body moving toward the barn. As I opened the door a bit because the wind was brutal, I flipped on the inside lights and just then I saw Mishka finishing delivering a baby... I screamed "What the Hell" and freaked everyone out. I quickly ran outside and gabbed up two panels and made a pen as fast as lighting. As I just got Mishka contained and waited to see what she would do I could hear a faint cry. My eyes darted quickly around the barn to see where the sound was coming from - I asked the girls "Where is the Baby" and without standing up all the girls snapped their heads to the North East corner of the farm. There in the dark was this tiny mud covered little crying baby.. I ran to get a towel and over to the baby. Now who in the world is the Mom?? The only other girl who I swear was not expecting was LILLY!! Now just so everyone understands my confusion - before taking the birthing pens apart I did check Mishka and Lilly privates and utters - NOTHING!!!! So now you know why I was so thrown back. I quickly made another pen and placed Lilly into it with the baby. She was so freaked that I had to hold her and get the baby a bit of her milk. Mean while Mishka sat facing the corner and was not calling or even looking at the baby. I went into her pen and she bite me, the baby and jumped out of the pen.. So Mishka is going to be just like her mother - deliver a healthy baby but have noting to do with it. This boy was strong, active and big so I decided to leave him for a moment and help the tiny girl. Lilly was not going to take care of her which is strange because she is always tending to others and is kind beyond words. I had no time to waste for her to get her act together - the little girl had been out too long without much motherly love. I whisked her up and ran to the house. Upon reaching the kitchen I remember I had just packed away all the kidding towels in the basement last night and returned all the supplies to their rightful places. Great!! So I ran around getting supplies and started the hot water for her bath. I need to clean her up and get her warm. Then started feeding warm formula with an eye dropper and worked fast to get her up and running. After an hour she was taking a small bottle and standing on her own. So in the bathroom she went with the space heater and towels while I ran to the barn. Once in the barn I took Mishka's boy in my lap and he took 4 ounces of formula like a pro. Meanwhile both Mother's had taken themselves outside and never looked back once. So now Wynonna has the little boy with her - She is not happy that there is someone needing a bottle and my attention but they are working it out. The are in with Opal and Olivia and Yes, Olivia is not happy but Opal is over the moon. The three of them within a couple of hours where playing and chasing each other all around. So fast foreword to now and the little girl in the bathroom is walking and following me around the bathroom. She is taking 2 ounces at a feeding and has peed and pooped several times.... She is engaged and snuggles e whiel I feed her - I think she is doing well for now. She is much too tiny to put in the pen with Wynonna and everyone else but hopefully within a day or two. We have weather coming in and I just dont wish to risk it. So just another Frantic Friday at the Funny Farm..

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Passing of our Grand Dame Ebony

This afternoon at 4:12 pm the lead goat girl Ebony passed away in her sleep. I had just been in the barn for the 1 pm bottle of her baby Wynonna and nothing seemed out of place. Ebony was enjoying her heat lamp because there was a chill in the barn and so I kept her lamp on. I gave her the head scratching that she got every time I was in the barn and she licked my hand as always. She was snuggled in her hay bed and all was right with her normal routine. So imagine my shock to come in three hours later to find her in the same spot but with eye closed and still as can be. At first I thought she was in deep sleep but I could tell by the mood of the other goats that their friend was gone. Everyone was talking to me quickly - they had to tell me all at once - they do that, like a bunch of kids who want to be the one to tell the bad news. As I opened her pen Wynonna came running from her pen with Olivia and Opal and wanted to be picked up immediately. I picked her up and she buried her head in my jacket collar and shock like a leaf in the wind. I calmed her down and hugged her while I checked with the other hand for a pulse on her Mother. Once Wynonna was fed her bottle and placed back into her pen I had to go about the business of removing Ebony from the barn and calming the rest of the goats. I miss her already but she lived a wonderfully long life - 19 years total with 15 of them here. We have been through much more great then sad. Her and I have talked over the past year about how we are both getting up there in years and how life has been full. I knew that this was going to be our last year together but still it does not make the loss any less. She has been my rock when life threw me some hard times and I always could count on her lending an ear when there was no one I wanted to share my thoughts with - she was like the best girlfriend you could ever have because she never judged me, just listened with care and gave unconditional love even when we disagreed over amounts of treats she wanted or how much time I could sit on the cold hard barn floor so she could snuggle in my lap. Her start here was not easy - she was a mean, cold, single minded goat who was more then a handful. Slowly we grew a bond that within a year I could not remember what life was like without her. She cared for her kids with great skill and love while keeping the herd in line. She produced the most incredible smokey taupe down and stood like a champ for me to pluck it out. I knew it broke her heart not to be able to care for Wynonna but I think deep down inside her she knew that I would gladly take over so she could rest. I will do my best to honor that Great Grand Dame and raise her girl the way Ebony would - with a strong hand and kind heart. Love and Light to you Ebony - You are forever in my heart

Do you have a Llama? Now you can

Have you every wanted a Llama??? He is a chic, well behaved Sterling Silver Llama who will melt your heart while giving you a attention getting conversation starter. For those of us who have the breathing kind too we love showing folks who grace our lives and hearts - now you can have the next best thing.

You will find this for sale at

I only have one so don't wait to long or you will spitting mad!

Calling all Shearing Gals

Show the world what you do - Shearing our animals by the old style shears is a lost art and for those of us who still do it we deserve jewelry that celebrates our skill and dedication.

The earring are Sterling Silver and are 1 and 1/8 inches long but a tiny bit over 3/8 of an inch wide.

You can purchase them at

A great Easter of Mother's Day present for that special fiber lady at your farm.

Visit to Far Away Lands and Cool Waters

Wishing you could travel to a tropical island with the cool waters rolling over your toes as you sip a tall cool drink??? Well, if your plans are for a stay vacation and the weather is not looking so promising then I have a way to get you in that HAPPY PLACE without worrying about packing your bags, standing in long lines and being bug bitten all over that tender white flesh. For a fraction of the price I have that bit of paradise in the form of "Tahitian Waters". The newest Hand Dyed Hand Spun Yarn that I am offering in my Etsy Store.

Read all about it at

I made more then enough to carry those creative talents of yours far, far away... Enjoy but don't wait too long already more then half of the yarn has been sold.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Have I Got A Deal For You !

I have been on a quest to make more room available in my shop at the farm. This is no easy task because every inch is full of wonderful items just waiting for that special someone. However, life is full of hard choices and I decided to find new homes for some great never been opened books. I have reduced their prices and for those who follow me on the Mary Jane Farms Market Place site or this blog site I will be also offering FREE - No you do not need to go get your glasses I wrote - FREE SHIPPING Here is how this can work - If you wish to purchase through my Etsy shop just place in the "Message from Buyer" box that you are either a MJF gal and give your name that you are listed by there or let me know you received this information through this blog posting and leave a comment under this posting... Once I have that I will refund the shipping cost through your PayPal account or if you wish I can send you a private invoice with all the corrected charges.... I have some very popular books available and some that are very hard to find so I am sure I can tempt you with one or two. I will also soon be placing sewing, felting, spinning and many more craft books up for sale so keep those wallets close. The Funny Farm is busting at the seams so help a gal out and give her some breathing room besides you know you have been wanting that book - treat yourself...

Monday, April 4, 2011

The Passing of Sweet Ben

Ben is the dark haired boy in the background. It was very early this morning that sweet Ben passed away in my arms. It has been a strange turn of events that I am still not sure what went wrong.

It started around Tuesday when his mother was not paying attention to him and would let him nurse but not track where he was at all times. His brother Jerry also went off to play with others and not gave his brother a second thought. It was then that I checked him over and could find no reason for the behavior so I just kept a close watch.

Ben was eating, drinking and walking about but not with the spring in his step and excitement of his normal self. So I give extra minerals, a small natural worming dose and some sugar water. By Friday he had not change for the better or worse. His mother "The Devil Goat" is not a loving mother but a good one so she still fed him, slept with him and such. By Saturday she had removed her care.. Not a good sign at all...

Saturday I gave bottles every four hours to him which he drank and was having regular bowel movements but still slow. Since I had been battling my own stomach bug I felt for him... So much fun doing everything with a mask on and rubber gloves but we did not want anyone to get my bug and the other way round. Wynonna was working on living outside with the other goats which she was not happy about but that meant I could check on him every three hours. By Sunday we had snow here and he was beginning to get cold. So in the house he came. He enjoyed the space heater, warm formula and being wrapped in a warm towels with tons of my lap time. This continued through Sunday but with no real improvement. It was early this morning while sitting in my lap on the couch watching another terrible horror movie on the TV that he took his last breath. For hours we had been snuggling, talked softly and gave tons of kisses - it is never easy when you know the end is near but I have been down this road so many times over the 15 years here you would think my heart would not break so when it happens but that is not the case. The showers of tears and mind numbing thoughts still come with the same strength as it did with the first lost lamb. However, now I can say with a clear heart that I did all I could and that his passing was peaceful and full of love.

When I returned to the barn with the 3 am bottle I brought his small body to the barn for his mother and brother to say goodbye. I then allowed the other goats to say their goodbyes and finally Chief licked his head and nosed his body. His eyes met mine with such sadness and we took some time to hug and cry. A loss of such a sweet one is never carried lightly here, not even with their peers. Just then Wynonna came running to the still body and layed on him. She looked at me with such sadness that my heart felt like it stopped. She rubbed her head all over him and then again looked at me. Such kindness and love for such a small boy...

So if you could say a small prayer for our fallen Ben - he is in our hearts, thoughts and memories forever.

What a Week

Sorry it has been so long but WHAT A WEEK! I won't go on about the saga that has happened here but to say it was a crappy week is saying it mildly.. Updates are: Wynonna has now sucessfully spent a night in the barn with bottles spread out every three hours. It snowed Sunday so I was worried as all get out but I put on all the heat lamps and with three hour bottles I made sure that if she looked the least bit cold it was back into the house. Olivia is doing better on her splint. She is eating, biting me and taking care of Opal. She is biting the tail of Wynonna anytime she gets out of place but is allowing Wynonna to play with Opal which is important to both the babies. I have been struggling with the worst stomach bug I think I ever had - not like me to get something like this but I will consider it a weight loss program and keep up with the Ginger Tea and Soda Crackers. Saturday when the temps reached 82 I put on some shorts (God are my legs neon white) and when I took a step the short fell down around my ankles. Guess I have lost weight since last shorts season. I did get off the farm for the first time since Feb 9th - only because I was out of formula and chicken feed. Found a new feed store that carries my requirements and cheaper then the man I have done business with for 15 years - way lower. Did a Happy Dance about that but not to wild - stomach still a rocking. On the bright side I managed to post some new products on my Etsy shop which where whisked away by some great customers. Have some new overseas customers in France, Russia and Hungry which is exciting. It still amazes me that my goodies are in the hands of talented folks so far away... So today starts a new week and as I always say "At Least I am Standing"