Friday, January 1, 2010
New Year's Wishes - 2010
We made it!
It's such a mental milestone and yet once "here", if one isn't part of a big celebration, recovering from a late late night or such, then what?
Here on the farm, "Now what?" means another day that farm priorities reign. Hubby wanted to celebrate by going to visit the goats. He also HAS to have black eye'd peas and ham because he heard that eating them on New Year's Day mean good luck for the new year we all are now into. So with a pot of black eyed peas and ham simmering on the stove with lots of onions and garlic, I brought the mini van to the front door and then drove him out to the barn. On a farm there is always "something"!
Having mischievous goats means there is always "SOMEthing". I had 2 somethings that needed dealt with today.
Buckley has a new game. He dances and "boings" like Tigger on his hind legs in the successful effort of grabbing the netting over the pen that is there to protect the hens. WHY in the world does he want to grab that nylon netting? It seems as sharp as it is he'd have done it once and quit. But, no, he thinks it's a game and he's pulling it down! Then he's using it to rub his horns on. What a TWERP! So I had to reattach netting and of course he was sure he could help. I had decided that running hay rope under it and tying the rope as high as I could in the tree in the center and to the corners and sides of the 6' chain link panels would work. Only, I had a frisky buck who wanted to grab the ropes from me and run with them. He's NO help of course. And there was Nipper, another buck, dancing on the outside of the pen stirring it up and wanting to join in the game!
Then the does had to have their own issue for me to tend to. I have a doe who is herd queen and regales in letting all the other goats know she has this self appointed throne and enjoying her position. In other words, she can be a brat! I have other does who could care less about herd heirarchy and would rather just all be loved on and left alone. I have another doe (2nd in line to the throne, er herd) who I had moved because I caught her picking on the roo and hen in the pen. She was grabbing feathers and plucking them! Mr Roo was missing his longer tail feathers..... those long black feathers that shine emerald green or a metallic purple in the sun. The pen she's in now all of a sudden has a younger and small doe (ND) who has plucked fur from her sides and a few random spots. I THINK she's biting the doe and picking on her!
What to do? Repen all the does! This sounds easy, but being the bucks have been with does and 2 are still in the barn, it's not so easy! Rather it means that Nipper is just sure that he belongs in BOTH pens as HIS does are now separated! AND, he can TRY to check the heat status of the does too young to breed right now! Hubby is standing in the middle of the fray as he was going to hold on to Nipper but couldn't. This didn't take all that long for the actual moving of the does, but the whole project means reorganizing feed tubs and water for the # of animals in each (2) pen so there is adquate eating space and water. I got 'er done of course and poor Nipper and Winchester22 were both highly disappointed in not getting the opportunity to have some "quality time" with the 4 young does who are not to be bred right now. Poor boys.... I lied and told them how sorry I was to ruin their fun.
One would think that peace would resume in the barn, but NOOOO! The excitement in the "romper room" (pen of younsters) meant GAME ON GIRLS! So there was quite a game of frolicing and contorting young does "feeling their wheaties"! They have a huge pen and lots to jump on and off of in the mad and beserk romping around. What fun leaping on and off the big black spool and seeing who could do the biggest airborne gymnastic moves with ears a flying. And, again, where is my camera? IN THE HOUSE of course!
The big does had to get involved in their pen too and they were tromping around their pen on and off their 3 "mountains". Nipper was fast on their heels thinking with moving to a different pen he MUST to his heat checks of the 2 "new" does there and the poor ole fella got worn out trying to keep up with the 3 big does tearing around, rearing and fake head butting. So he did what a fiesty young buck would do..... jumped the gate and left them too it!
Watching all the antics is good for some laughs. Yes, it's work, but it's worth it to me. One thing that helps is that I realize I make the choices for my critters as to where they are housed and how. So when I have moments crop up such as today, it's because of MY choices. They are just being the animals they are and acting the way animals act. Yes, it's more work for me to do, but it's because when I made my choices, I made them from the human view and they live in the view of being the critter they are. There's no sense in me getting mad at them for the problem at hand. Sure, I'd wish that the young doe didn't get hair plucked out of her and I DO feel bad about it. But I was responsible and immediately dealt with the situation which was from my choice of who was penned together there. And I wish Buckley would invent another game, but he's doing what comes natural for a silly young buck who wishes he had does with him instead of hens and is dancing and all because that's what it takes this time of year to be warm in the environment I provided him. I just have to be smarter in my choices. That being, I can enjoy the humor of the situation at hand and their hilarious antics! Plus it gives me the input I need to improve their housing, care, etc. I'm hoping the older does are bred and I don't want stress causing loss of pregnancy. It's my responsibility to help them be less stressed and happier. Yes, it's work, but it's a type of work that I greatly enjoy and take responsibility for.
I quit making New Year's resolutions several years ago. I got tired of making them and then "beating myself up" for not keeping them or succeeding. Since, I use the time to review goals and revise them as needed. Take a mental check of the path I'm on and try to "encourage" myself to continue improving some habits and attitudes that I want to continue to develop.
I like this quote and hope you might too. It's perfect for the season of course: "We will open the book. Its pages are blank. We are going to put words on them ourselves. The book is called "Opportunity" and its first chapter is New Year's Day." Edith Lovejoy Pierce
May your opportunities abound for 2010!