Sunday, October 2, 2016

Sunday Walkabout 10-2

It certainly says something about my week when the best story I can think of involves a chipmunk in the backyard. That gives some sort of credence to my fear that I’ve finally/completely “lost my mojo”, that not only are my posts incredibly boring…but, so is life on the hill.  And, it’s certainly not the most scintillating way to start a blog post.


We’ve had a stretch of gloomy, rainy weather. It seemed the majority of Market customers had endured just about all they could take of the darkness and drizzle. Customers and vendors alike were bemoaning the cold and the dark…and worrying over the impending winter.

But, I’m getting ahead of myself.

so hard to be motivated when the day starts like this

We did indeed have more than a few soggy days and a lot of dark skies. But, honestly, we need that kind of weather…and not for the precipitation. It is imperative that I get caught up on the record-keeping side of the farm. And, while it doesn’t make for good photos, at least I have made some real progress in excavating the top of my desk. The receipts are tallied so that I can submit the sales tax for the quarter. With a little effort, I can balance the checkbook and print off some earnings reports and finish the filing. That is progress, people. Although, in reality, I could use a couple more wet days!

hard to believe this is the same day!

The wet weather prevented us from doing any more serious clean-up in the gardens, so we focused on the hoophouses. The dark weather made it evident that we really needed to pull the shadecloth off in order to get some good plant growth. This is an annual event. It just ended up being a little early this year.

this is on a bright day

On a cloudy day, hoophouse #2 is still dark around noon. (that can’t be good) However, it’s not just the shadecloth.  The shadows are coming from the trees along the fenceline. And, that means that we (actually the Boss) will have to do some tree trimming at some point. When we put the hoophouse up years ago, you could see Mbrk Rd quite well. Now, you are hard-pressed to see it at all. The growth was slow and steady and went unnoticed until now. Guess there’s a new job topping the “to-do” list.

shady hoophouse

uncovered hoophouse
We took advantage of a short break in the weather, pulled the shadecloth off, rolled it up and stored it away until next spring, when we’ll continue the cycle. Because, while it may be fall, and time to slow down…we must be anticipating the next growing season long before it starts.

each garlic clove will make a plant for next season
…and to that end, I got a portion of the green garlic crop planted. We should start harvesting just in time for the start of next year’s Market. The seed stock for the main garlic crop arrived late in the week. The Boss had been anticipating this and the planting beds are nearly ready for planting. 

We also made a run to Edinburg to pick up the lambs that we took a couple of weeks ago. The freezer is brimming with beautiful chops and steaks. And, the cooler weather means shanks and stew sound deliciously appealing. I know I’m ready.

I guess you’re wondering about the chipmunk story…

You just never know what might happen around here. So, when I saw Sissie (one of the barn kitties) stalking something in the backyard, I didn’t give it much thought.

Then I realized it was a chipmunk and I might just be privy to a “wild America” type of moment. There was a distinct possibility of good "photo ops" of a chipmunk hunt.

I know, I know…chipmunks are cute. Really cute. But, they are rodents and they do damage…and it’s the cats’ job to keep the tiny critter population under control. So, we don’t interfere in the whole hunting thing.

But, it was a feisty little chipmunk and it kept turning around and bopping Sissie in the nose while shrieking little rodent epithets at her. Finally, Sissie had enough, picked it up in her mouth and stalked off.

I figured the show was over.

As I turned to go back to whatever I was supposed to be doing, the chipmunk made a break for it…

It ran across the lawn and jumped…

right on top of the sleeping Squeekie!

Squeekie picks the oddest places to take her naps

Of course, that meant that she woke up and her hunting instincts kicked into overdrive and now there were two felines stalking the tiny rodent. I knew it didn’t stand a chance, so I went back to work.

I had completely forgotten about it until we were doing the dishes after supper. There had been a downpour just before we ate and the tree outside the window was still dripping profusely.

…but, wait a minute…WHAT is that?

view from the kitchen window

There in the branches, high above the ground, was the chipmunk.

I have no idea how he/she evaded the cats or survived the deluge, but there it was, looking none the worse for wear.

A chipmunk in a tree. Can’t say I ever saw THAT before.

I have no idea what happened to the chipmunk after that…since there was a Pyr in the backyard, so the odds are not good. But, it did grant a little interest/entertainment to an otherwise dull evening.

getting a chipmunk photo

The rain continued to be a factor throughout the week, it even rained on the Market.

it was still incredibly dark when the Market opened

Rain is never great news for an open air market, but in October it really has an effect on sales. In addition, there are other activities throughout the Valley that draw folks elsewhere on a Saturday morning, so things were painfully slow. However, we sold the vast majority of our offerings and there was a great new band playing cheerful, upbeat music to brighten up the market atmosphere. All in all, it was a good morning. Here’s the link to the Boss’ photos. Click here.

However, it’s dark and gloomy again today and I’m pretty sure Remy has the right idea for a Sunday nap on the couch.

Thanks for stopping by.

Have a Happy Sunday! 

Come back and “visit” again soon.


  1. Chipmunks can be quite talented at escaping and fighting back. I watched one take a run at our cat, jump off of the side of the cat and run away. I don't think your posts are boring, and I actually look forward to a little normalcy when things start to get over the top. -Jenn

  2. I always enjoy seeing and reading your posts. They are never boring to me. I really enjoy the day-to-day life on the farm.... chipmunks and all.