Thursday, June 13, 2013

Small Measures of Success

It’s Thankful Thursday once again.

This week it wasn’t hard to be thankful.
...and the sun was shining once more

Sometimes it is… (hard to be thankful)…sometimes I come up empty…I know I haven’t posted much lately…I keep meaning to explain that…(maybe next time)

After struggling through a month of somewhat unexplained lamb losses and all the frustration and double-guessing that goes along with that, it was time to take the first batch of lambs to the processor.  When the Boss and I picked out the biggest lambs, it was evident that one of our bottle babies was indeed the second largest lamb in the flock.  If you missed it, you need to read this.  Bottle babies are not known for their vim and vigor.  The fact that “Baab Evans” even made it is some sort of testament to the fact that we are indeed good shepherds.  I know now that I made some mistakes…learned some stuff the hard way this season…but, no one can say that I don’t give this my very best. Yes, I’ll put this one in the “win” column. To say I was thankful to get that load of lambs delivered was an understatement.  Two weeks and we will have lamb for sale at the Market…that thought also makes me (and our customers) thankful.

It is somewhat of an understatement to say that the weather has been unusual this year.  As of June 12, we have had 27 inches of snow and over 19 inches of rain.  We have already surpassed the average snowfall, most of it coming in late March, and we still have the late part of the year to take into consideration.  Generally by this point of the year, we are in earnest prayer for rain, while our haymaking neighbors are praying for one more day of dry sunshine. This year no one is talking about the “d” of drought, and there is a LOT of hay in the county that is either still standing (and FAR too mature) or lying on the ground, getting “washed” with every passing thunderstorm.

The haymakers are not alone in their weather woes. The wet and the cold played havoc on our planting schedule, and made the Boss fearful for his garlic crop.  okay, he says fearful is too strong a word…I should say…concerned…  So, the Boss was concerned for the garlic crop, but we couldn’t catch a break to get it out of the ground.  Because like everything else around here, the garlic job meant that a number of other things had to be done first.  …and it seemed every time we got started…it would rain…again.

But, finally…thankfully…we got the garlic harvested.  While the crop wasn’t as amazing as last year, (read this) we were both grateful to find that the majority of the bulbs were tight and good-sized.  After a couple of weeks curing time, we will have garlic for sale once more.

Then, when the Boss headed out to mow around the gardens, he found strawberries…lots of strawberries…that needed picking immediately. Between the torrential rains and the hot, humid days, we both figured the strawberry crop was finished for the year…but, we were wrong. What a nice surprise! With a slight shift in plans, I was off to pick strawberries for a while.  The rains had damaged a lot of them, but we were able to salvage a good amount. The strawberry crop has been far better than we had expected.

…and when you can have strawberries for dessert…well, you just have to be THANKFUL!


  Hope you’re having a good day, too!


  1. Interesting about your bottle fed lamb Barbara. Last year one of our lambs began to struggle and finally we realised it had gone blind. I brought it into a pen and bottle fed it - every time I opened the kitchen door it thought I was coming with the bottle and it bawled its head off. It made a jolly good lamb too - trouble is I was so sorry to see it go!
    The troubles we farms have with the weather - seems it is never right doesn't it. That hay crop sounds sad. Our first silage has gone well (forage) and our hay is coming on and should be ready in a few weeks. We only make one field of hay - really because the farmer has always made it.
    I love your header - I presume it is your farm. It is nice to see where you live.

    1. Oh, that's funny! A lamb trained to the sound of the kitchen door! I can imagine it got a little annoying sometimes. It would be awful here...I'm in and out of the house a lot.
      I'm glad to know that I'm not the only one to feel a little sorry to see a lamb go off to its "destiny". I don't usually feel sad when we take the lambs, or process chickens, but, I rather miss that one lamb. One thing dad taught us as children was not to get attached to the farm animals, but, then he never had a bottle lamb.
      I hope I didn't make it sound like all the hay is's not. But, there is a lot of hay that won't be the quality product that it usually is. I know a number of farmers who take great pride in their hay crop. My daughter helps her in-laws and she is quite proud of her brother-in-law for getting all his hay in before the rain. (particularly since she helped!)
      Yes, the header is our farm. My husband is a talented photographer (among other things) and did a panorama of a part of the farm one spring. I liked it so much that I began using it for our blog and on Facebook. Thanks for the kind words.
      Hope things are going well for you!