Complete Naughtiness!

A few days ago, I made my way out the barn for my usual morning chores.  I should have known that even though the air was filled with a peaceful September chill, something did not feel right!  Why?  One word…GOATS!  Normally, as soon as the garage door opens, the beckoning begins!  Their constant banter only means one thing… “Woman, where is our hay!”  When I made my way around the corner of the house and heard nothing, I knew I was in trouble…

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From left to right: Pippin, Sam, Diny, Oatmeal

As I came around the back of the barn, these four critters came running towards me, as if to say, “Look Mama, we are out!  We are not supposed to be out, but someone forgot to bungee cord our gate and well, we couldn’t help ourselves.  The pine trees were so yummy and those apple trees were complete delicious… ”

I simply replied, “You are all naughty!”

And what did I get…sass!  Even from the goats!  As you can see from the photo, Pippin was feeling a bit sorry, but Sam stuck his tongue out at me, as did Diny!  Oatmeal, had complete attitude and I swear rolled his eyes at me!  NO respect…

It was time to assess the damage…

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Looks like they enjoyed a beautiful, young apple tree!

I returned everyone to their proper home and gave Thing 1, 2, 3 and 4 a firm lecture about following the farm rules and respecting their Mama.  Time will tell…

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But Mama, I want to be with you…

Please know, I adore these four hooligans!  They are truly the comic relief on the farm!  They are hilarious and naughty and completely perfect!

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My daughter loves the goats!  Although, I can’t say that cleaning out the goat run is her favorite hobby.  She and her friends do enjoy walking the goats on leashes, around the farm.

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El and Diny

Pippin and Sam are two years old.  They were triplets, but sadly Frodo did not make it…  They are truly the most gentle creatures.  Their movements are much like that of a deer.

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Pippin, Sam and Frodo
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Baby Sam and Mama

Diny and Oatmeal are Pygmy goats.  There is nothing deer-like or gentle about them!  They are solid eating machines!  They are truly beasts!

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Diny and Oatmeal have been escaping since they were babies!  There was nothing like having a nice family dinner, when all of a sudden, two goats were standing at the screen door, of the upper deck!

Life on the farm would never be the same without these four trouble makers!   I have apple trees to replace and pine trees to prune, yet they are so worth it!   They love me, no matter what!  And, I love them…good, bad and naughty!

Love Yourself…Embrace Yourself…Just Be You…

♥Roda

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If You Build It, They Will Come: Part IV

2014 was an amazing year for Indigo Acres!  We not only built a barn, but became a loving home for: 2 horses, 2 goats, 4 barn cats, 1 dog, 24 chickens and 4 ducks.  This was only the beginning…

Winter in Michigan can be brutal!  Each year, I am amazed at how well the critters adapt! Growing fresh fruits and veggies, in Michigan, is not possible in the dead of Winter.  Knowing how important it was for the animals to still have their greens, we set up a fodder growing system.  We purchased whole barley and whole oats from our local mill. Growing fodder is the same process as growing sprouts or micro greens, for human consumption.

In the beginning, we experimented with different types of trays.  We found that the black seed trays worked best.  They could be purchased with pre-cut drain holes, which was very helpful!  The seeds would be soaked in the morning and at night.  Within 3 days, roots would appear, followed by sprouts, forming a dense fodder mat. Once the sprouts were 3 inches in height, we would break the large rectangles apart and feed them to the chickens and ducks.  The goats and horses enjoyed these yummy treats as well!

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Small green house stands, within humidity hoods worked great for housing the fodder trays.  In the beginning, I would water each individual tray in the morning and at night.  Needless to say, this was very time-consuming.  Wifey was determined to create a self watering system, using a timer system. We have made some great improvements in our system, over the past few years, but that will have to wait for a future post!
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This flat is ready to head out to the ladies!
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Even on the snowiest of days, the ladies still had their greens!
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Healthy and Happy Chickens = Healthy and Happy Eggs!
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My little helper!

Magic and Velvet had settled in beautifully and changed my life in so many ways.  It always amazed me that, even from the beginning, they knew what I needed.  They helped me help them.  We shared a beautiful language, combined with silence and strength. Although, when I was late for a feeding, Velvet would sound off with her impatient whinny!

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Velvet and Magic showing off their Winter coats.
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There is nothing better than an open gate to the pasture, on a beautiful Winter’s day!
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Even on the coldest of days, I love my life!  There is always someone waiting for me in the barn!
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Ophe was no longer a little puppy!  She had exploded in size and still had much growing to do!

It was time for a new addition on the farm!!  It might not be fuzzy or fluffy, but it sure was a wonderful and welcomed purchase! (I bet that tractor would end up being the perfect place for singing a few show tunes!)

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As you can see, Wifey was elated to add to her John Deere collection!

Spring was right around the corner and that meant only one thing…baby animals!  Since Wifey just received her new green baby, it was my turn!  I can’t think of anything better than 2 1/2 week old, bottle fed, nubian goats!

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Meet Sam!
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These three babies were non-stop excitement!  Meet Frodo, Pippin and Sam…  Unfortunately, Frodo became ill and after many late nights in the barn with him, he passed away…
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Celebrate every moment of life…
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Sam found his new best friend…
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Pippin stole my heart immediately!

Most intelligent people would stop and enjoy the blessings of the year!  But, it was spring and that meant more than just baby animals…gardening!  Over the Winter of 2015, Wifey and I started to design our dream garden.  We were ready for a large expansion, from the small-scale square foot gardening we had been focusing on.  It was definitely time to get the graph paper out…

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Give me some graph paper and I am one happy girl!!
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Veggies and Fruit Trees and Herbs, Oh My!

We were ready!  All we had to do was patiently wait for the ground to thaw so we could put a post hole digger and a few teenagers to work!  Next week, watch for Part V of If You Build It, They will Come, for a glimpse of how the garden began…

Make your dream a reality!

Love Yourself…Embrace Yourself…Just Be You…

Roda

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Note:  If You have missed part of the farm series, you can link to them below!