Saturday, October 30, 2010

The Hobgoblin Goat Queen




The Hobgoblin Goat Queen

*~*~*~*


It was Halloween eve down in the goat barn

And the old mama does had prepared quite a yarn


They`d made up a grand tale to make their kids scream

`Bout a spooky grim wraith called the Hobgoblin Goat Queen


As the moon fell behind the nude limbs of the trees

Their kids all came in and fell down to their knees


A cold chilly wind howled through the barn eaves

It rattled the doors and rustled dead leaves


Every kid in that barn Nubian, LaMancha and Sable

We`re hunkered down tight in their comfortable stable


Then out of the herd stepped great, great-grandma Fawn

Her brown fur was sparse and her front teeth long gone


She cleared her long throat and coughed up a cud

Her ancient old eyes chilled those wee kids goat blood


“This tale that we tell has been told `oft before

It`s considered quite factual in noble goat lore


On Halloween night when the human kids trick

For treats that would make any caprine kid quite sick


We goats stay inside safe and snug in our homes

This night is when the Hobgoblin Goat Queen roams


Now the humans don`t see her meandering near

They`re too busy with costumes and candy I fear



But we goats don`t care for such silly old things

Because only we goats can hear those bat wings



You`ll know when the Hobgoblin Goat Queen is quite near

Your hooves will tingle and your ears will feel queer


You`ll inhale a smell that is rank and offensive

Then you`ll hear a deep blat that will leave you quite pensive


And just when you`re sure your heart can`t bear anymore

That Hobgoblin Goat Queen will leap over the door!”


At that very instant a most terrible sight

Jumped over the barn door and caused a great fright


Every kid in that barn let out a loud bray

And buried their heads deeply into the hay


The does then all laughed like some hens like to cluck

For the specter was none other than Anakin the buck


He had gone to great lengths to add to the fright

His head was all cobwebbed, his beard painted white


The kids slowly peeked from amid the hay chaff

Then one kid by one they started to laugh


So be very careful when you leave your safe home

For the Hobgoblin Goat Queen may be ready to roam


Keep far from the goat barns that you may pass

Just to be safe and cover your *Insert word that rhymes with pass here*


Now of course I don`t know if old Fawn`s story`s true

But would this sweet goatherder ever fib to you?

*~~~~*



Happy Halloween from our farm to yours!

Friday, October 29, 2010

Busy, busy, busy

*Collapses into kitchen chair with mug in hand*


Phew! How is everyone today? Probably just as busy as I`ve been no doubt. I just got back from town and hauling in groceries. Why is it that whenever there are groceries to carry in there`s a lack of helping hands? Oh sure, I know Mister`s at work and Miss is at school but boy howdy, those grocery sacks get heavier every year it seems,or maybe it`s just me. Oh, sorry there is always Trinity who lives to help!



Pop did really well on his home health evaluation. He went right up those 15 stairs to his apartment like a man half his age. So hopefully he`ll be coming home soon!



He is sure ready. When I went in this morning he was all dressed and had his suitcase in hand. I know, I felt so bad having to explain this was just an evaluation but he took it as well as can be expected.

I wanted to thank everyone for thier well wishes for my dad, it really does mean alot! Now I have to run and get some quick vacuuming done before the tribe gets home and we do chores then head over to the high school for the homecoming football game!


Maybe I should grab another cuppa, just for fortification??

Thursday, October 28, 2010

The Strap Assassin Strikes Again!

Morning gang! I hope the past few days have been good to y`all. Let me just grab a fresh cup and I`ll be right back!



Ah, now that is much better. Seems I barely have time to think here of late. Between running to visit dad every day and then chores and family life the time just slips away doesn`t it? Today I`m off to tidy up Pop`s apartment because he`s having a home evaluation tomorrow. That`s where a member of the nursing home rehab staff comes to his house and they make sure he can take care of himself. If the home evaluation goes well they may discharge him next Tuesday! I know he`ll be so much happier when he returns home and I can`t say as I blame him on iota!

The past two nights though Mister has provided the excitement....well if one counts skinning, quartering and processing venison excitement. Monday night he came home with this nice seven point he took during our archery season.






I`ll admit I did miss the venison. We had to toss what we had frozen when our freezer died, so this meat will come in handy. I hate having to buy meat in the grocery store! We`re so used to home-raised poultry, beef and pork that old store stuff just tastes funny. Mister says we`re not used to having to not chew our chicken for five minutes before swallowing, and that`s why that store bought meat seems so weird. Could be I reckon!

How we handle out venison is pretty simple. We save the tenderloins and I`ll make them for Sunday dinner. Yum and Yum! Also we save one roast that I`ll do in the crockpot with some canned tomatoes, to help tenderize it. All the rest we grind. Then whatever I make that calls for ground beef I mix half beef/half venison. That is one thing that I`m very proud of, we eat what we harvest. Be it trout, turkey, grouse or deer.

I suppose this is a good warm-up for when we have to process a twelve-hundred pound steer within the next couple of months. We`ve never done a whole steer before but I have to imagine that Hereford will provide alot more meat than a whitetail!


Guess I had best finish this cup of joe and get a move on. Have to meet dad`s landlord by nine this morning because silly Feral locked pop`s keys inside the house last time she stopped to get him clean clothes.*Blushes*



I know, it really didn`t surprise me either!

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

One Liners-10/26





'Just a little to the left......'

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Sunday Night Lowdown

Evening gang, come on in and have a cup of decaf!



How has your weekend been? Things were actually pretty quiet here on the hillside farm…well aside from the big stinging insect nest incident that is. Saturday Mister and Miss went hunting in the evening but returned home empty handed. I had a nice visit with my sister-in-law and her hubby and did the usual umpteen loads of wash. That about wraps up Saturday!

Today was a gray day mostly. I did some fiction writing in the morning then we ran to Wal-Mart after lunch. Mister needed more doe urine (Yeah, it`s a hunter thing best not to dwell upon it friends) and Miss wanted some bangles to wear to the homecoming dance. We forgot the bling I guess! My big purchase was a real find. Blazing Saddles in the five dollar bin?? SOLD!! I just love Mel Brooks films and have played my copy of Young Frankenstein over and over.

We did have this interesting bit of action today. This is almost like time-lapse photography of goose pumpkin carving.


Ten AM





Four PM







Please do note the pumpkin nibblers giving me the evil goose-eye as I snapped the picture. I wager there won`t be a thing left come tomorrow once the chickens are allowed to get near the carcass. Now I`m off to catch up on my buddies blogs then do some virtual farming on Facebook, since having a real farm apparently isn`t enough to tend to!


What`s been keeping you all busy?

Saturday, October 23, 2010

You have to be suspicous......

…...when they come home with ‘That Look’ on their face.


Now seriously gang I haven`t lived this long and not learned a thing or two, so when Mister Yodeling came in yesterday with that look, I knew something was afoot.

I was sipping some coffee when he entered after bringing up a round bale for the steers.

“I found something and I want you to come out and hold it,” he said.

Yeah. Uh-huh. Right ran through my mind as he looked down at me SO innocently.

“What did you find?” I asked. Seemed like a logical question to toss out before I agreed to hold anything.

“I`m not telling you, just come out and hold it.”

Yeah. Uh-huh. Right I thought again and placed my mug to the counter.

“I don`t think so,” I said.

Lord only knows what he could have brought home. I do not agree to hold anything without knowing beforehand what it is. Trust me, with this man you have to be on your toes.

“It`s nothing dead,” he assured me.

I tried to peek outside to see what it was but it was now in the back of my truck, and being Hobbit sized ruled out peeking it seemed. I muttered under my breath and turned to look at him with suspicion.

“I swear it`s really cool! Just come hold it, I want to take your picture with it for your blog.”

Yeah. Uh-huh. Right I thought as I resolutely pattered out behind him with the digital. Now bear in mind his cool and my cool are sometimes galaxies apart. Once we got beside the Chevy and he lifted it out I drew back like he had tugged a Tasmanian devil out of the pick-up trucks bed.

“Have you ever seen one this big?” Mister asked with boyish enthusiasm.

“Nope, never have. You can put it away now,” I mumbled eying it with distaste and a goodly amount of fear.

Why, I thought with feminine reasoning, would he bring THAT home?!

“No, I want you to hold it so I can take your picture,” the man insisted and shoved it at me.

A small scuffle ensued which only ended with me promising to hold it if he held it as well. I voiced my concern that what was inside could come out if I held it. He assured me that it was very safe to hold and nothing bad would happen. As if I haven`t ever heard THAT before from a man! Finally, and after a great deal of female distaste and masculine pleading, I held the damn thing. Two quick pictures were snapped and I felt creepy-crawly for the rest of the evening. So here are the pictures of me holding it as well as hubby.









We won`t go into the tirade that occurred when he told me he found one of the inhabitants crawling around after the picture taking!

Friday, October 22, 2010

On Feral`s Front Porch




Oh yes, that is what it looks like. Snow. Just a dusting but enough to remind us of what is creeping up on us.*Sighs*

How`s the weather where you guys are?

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

For Mom





Mothers are a special gift sent

from God above,

They bless us with their nurturing,

And fill us with their love.


They pick us up when we are down,

And when we're sad they know,

They're always there to lend a hand,

And guide us as we go.


And mothers are like special jewels

that can't be bought or sold...

A mother's love's more precious

than the rarest gem or gold.


Yes, mothers are a special gift sent

from God above,

And we'll be blessed forever with

their never ending love!



Faye Kilday

*~*~*


Although it has been eight years today that you left us Mom, you are in our hearts daily. When I look at my daughter turning into a young woman I can`t help but think of you. How you adored the little girl and doted on her, and yes even spoiled her. How I wish that you could see her now....but wait you can can`t you?


In memory of Helen George

4/30/35 to 10/19/02

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Sunday Night Low-down

Good evening gang!


I hope your weekend was a wonderful one. Mine has been pretty much non-stop it seems. Feels good to settle down in my pajamas and catch up with everyone around the table. No worries, I made decaf so we should all be able to sleep after our little get-together!

Things with my dad have been up and down over the past three or four days. He`s been having some trouble with his blood pressure dropping out whenever they get him out of bed. Wednesday it dropped so low he was unresponsive. That was pretty scary. They did an EKG and an echo that afternoon then had to send them off to another hospital to be read. I`m still waiting to hear the reports back on those, the waiting is really tough.

Aside from his blood pressure he is doing okay. They have him on solid food and he`s taking walks every day. His room-mate and I tease him about being out chasing nurses with his walker. Saturday night though he had a pretty rough time.

They called me at home quite late to try to talk to him. He was very confused about where he was and was insisting my step-sister had taken him away. This afternoon when Mister, Miss and I went up to visit I asked about this episode. He is usually pretty keen for a man his age and I`ll be frank I was very worried after trying to explain things to him and him not being able to grasp the truth.

The nurse on duty said some of his confusion could be due to his BP being so low; the red blood cells the brain needs to remain sharp just may not be getting there quickly enough. Hopefully that`s what`s causing it. We`re also still waiting for a bed in the nursing home to open up so he can begin his rehab.

Today began bright and early, which is nothing new around here. The roosters and I think we have to see the sun rise I guess….does that make me as smart as a chicken? *Blatantly ignores husband`s snide comment*



Eight AM saw some of our friends arrive and we then had one heck of a goat rodeo! Today was the happy day that Anakin and Auron finally got to be with their lovely ladies! Oh the sounds of adoration are dancing through our valley now!

After some mulling I decided to breed Anakin to my older does Fawn, Mallory and Jennifer.



I`ll give my young buck Auron the youthful girls. Elizabeth, Fran, Farah and Felicia are now giving him a very stinky eye as he snorts, slobbers and makes a fool of himself in general.



Trinity served as the official extra collar carrier.



After getting the caprine lovers situated I finally got around to cleaning up my yard stuff! Yippee for Feral! I`m impressed I got it done before the snow began to fly to be honest. Mister had some woodstove tinkering to do before the real cold sets in so he did that as I went around picking up plastic flowers that someone who shall remain nameless *Cough* Lucius*Cough* scattered about.

A very quick lunch then a trip to the hospital to visit pop and bring his car home and then we were off again! Mister ran off to help our neighbor to load a steer and I tossed something together that resembled a dinner.

Evening chores followed and then finally a nice hot bath. Now that I`m all sparkly clean and have chatted with y`all I think I hear J. R. Ward calling, so I`ll mosey off to read then hit the hay.


So what did you all do over the weekend?

Thursday, October 14, 2010

One Liners-10/14




'Just point me to the recycle bin!'


As always y`all are invited to play along! Simply put your own one-liner for the above picture in with your comments!

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Pops & Daughters

Salutations gang! Hope the week so far is being good to everyone!


It has been a rather hectic few days here for us yodeling goatherders. I`m very happy to report that my dad had his surgery yesterday and came out of it well! I went up today and spent a couple of hours with him in ICU while he ate his lunch. He seems to be in good spirits despite some pain. After talking with his surgeon who feels relatively optimistic that they got all the cancer I feel much better. I know there are no guarantee`s when dealing with cancer but I choose to remain optimistic since being pessimistic really isn`t in my genes.

Now pop is looking at some rehab I think, which does not set well with him since all he wants is to go home! Yesterday if possible! As I assured him though as he sipped his broth today rehab will be a great benefit, since he is weak as a kitten and will be for some time I should assume.

He`ll also need some instruction in proper care of his colostomy. Since he lives alone spending a few weeks getting stronger in a nursing home is not a bad thing I think. The frown on his face as he nodded shows that he knows this but being a fiercely independent 85 year old he doesn`t like the notion one iota!

Also over the weekend I spent a very enlightening few hours shopping with my daughter for her first homecoming dance dress. Oh for the days when Mom could pick up something and the child would wear it without compunction. Methinks….no…meknows those days is long gone!




Truly gang I tend to feel I have rather good taste in clothes. I don`t go out in public wearing polka-dot pants and a wild striped shirt or anything, honestly! Sure I may wear Marvel tees but show me a comic geek who doesn`t!

Obviously my taste in clothes is not up to the groove or radical or beast. I think beast is the term now in vogue but it may have changed over the past couple of weeks so don`t quote me. Every article of clothing I held up got the eye-roll of teenage disdain. Everything she held up got the motherly raise of brows.

On a quick side-note here, who the Sam Hill designs the clothes for young ladies nowadays?!!? Why the heck are all the clothes skin tight and cut up to there and down to here?! Truly I am no prude but sincerely who would allow their daughter to wear clothes that would make a saloon girl blush?? None are suitable for school let alone a school dance! *Shakes head*

Anydoodles the ghastly fashion aside we finally did find one dress that we both agreed on after some wrangling and jangling. The shoe shopping was actually far less taxing than the choice of dress praise to the Maker. Mister Yodeling wisely chose to remain home. He is a run-in-and-grab-it shopper….unless it`s a sporting goods store than mindlessly wandering is acceptable.

Today after school Miss Yodeling is baby-sitting for our neighbors for a couple of hours. So in the course of one week she has bought her first dress for her first dance, gotten an escort for the dance and now is going to be earning her first wages. Where in the world did that 4 year-old go who wanted nothing more than to play with Mom all day? How did she turn into this vibrant young woman while I wasn`t looking? I swear that I just brought her home from the hospital not that long ago all swaddled up in a baby blanket her grandma crocheted.


Thank goodness I haven`t aged any since the day she was born she typed knowing it isn`t believed for a second.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Chore Time! Part one

Good morning! I hope y`all brought your Muck boots and chore coats and are willing to lend some farm aid because this bright and sunny AM we`re going to go do morning chores! Yeah it would be cool to have had the other Farm-Aid wouldn`t it? I can just imagine John Mellencamp and Willie Nelson playing in my livingroom. *Drifts off into musical fantasy*

Ahem, yes, well my mental meanderings about Mr. Mellencamp aside let`s tug on our work gloves and get cracking shall we? This is a very picture heavy post just so y`all know!

First thing off we`ll take a minute to breath in some crisp fall air on the back porch.





Sure is pretty here in the mountains of Pennsylvania this time of year. Guess we had better get moving, I can hear the ducks protesting! They`re first on my routine. I let them out and fill up thier feeder and clean out thier bathtub.



Onto the geese! I shut the ducks pen door before letting the geese out because if I don`t the barnyard Mafia tends to muscle in and drive the ducks from thier breakfast.



After the geese are out and about then I head over to give them fresh water and thier breakfast. Clean bucket of water and a scoop of mash although the water doesn`t stay clean for long with the web-footed ones!







Allrighty, the ducks and geese are done! Now I grab a dish of goat grain for the bucks and fill the bucket once more for the boys.







Once the boys are situated then we`ll go and take care of the chickens since we`re getting the evil chicken eye!



Fresh water for the cluckers and then back to the feed can to fill up thier homemade feeder.





Ah boy, the chickens are eating the goose food!



Bet that don`t last long. Yup, here come the geese and there go the chickens!




After the uphill group is done I let the ducks out of thier pen and head down the hill. The goats are done in the evening so we don`t have to do the ladies in the morning. We do though have to grain the steers and feed the cowbarn chickens. Yup, we have chickens that don`t like the chicken coop and reside in the cowbarn. Those birds get a can of cracked corn tossed into the driveway every morning.



Hey ducks, don`t be eying the chicken food!!



Everybody wants what the other guy has I guess. Silly ducks. Okay, two scoops of grain for Sir Patrick of Moo and Bubba J who are waiting with baited cow breath since they are SO hungry and gaunt. *Rolls eyes*





And that there wraps up the morning chores! This is what I do 365 in rain, snow, ice and fair weather. As most of you know who have farm animals it is a job that sometimes we dread doing but must be done. The responsibility is ours as farmers to ensure our animals are cared for. Truthfully I`ve had people ask why...why would you want to get up every day and do all that?? Isn`t it hard work??

Yup, it is hard work. And sure, there are mornings especially in the winter when I would sooner shoot myself in the foot than bundle up and have to beat frozen water dishes and fall on my keister but the rewards far outweigh the drawbacks as far as I`m concerned. Later this week I`ll show you all the evening chores which will focus on the goats heavily but also the cows get thier goodies as well!



Now I`m thinking it`s just about time for some coffee! Who wants a fresh cup??

Friday, October 8, 2010

On Feral`s Front Porch

You know there really is nothing like coming home and finding a present awaiting you is there? Everyone loves gifts no matter what they are or who they come from don`t they? It shows that someone is thinking of you.

When I returned from grocery shopping and a very small trip to the book store to leap on the newest book from J. R. Ward, I found this gift awaiting me....



The giver was most pleased with the gift and even now is simply purring with pride over his present.





It really is the thought that counts she repeats over and over as she heads out front door to dispose of the thoughtful gift.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

One Liners-10/6




'Pardon me, would anyone happen to have some Grey Poupon?'




As always everyone who visits is encouraged to play along! Simply put your one-liner in with your comments!

Monday, October 4, 2010

A fine fall weekend

Good morning all! I`ve got a fresh pot of coffee on so come on in and sit a spell.


I have to tell you there is nothing like a glorious fall weekend is there? Last week was so wet that when Friday dawned gray once more I was still trying to figure out those darn kubits, you know, just in case. Thankfully by midday the sun had come out and a brisk cool wind had blown those ugly rain clouds away. So we yodeling goatherders packed up our jackets and our pom-pom`s and rode over to Miss Yodeling`s high school to root-root-root for the home team.






Sipping hot chocolate while cheering at a football game is about as fall as a person can get!

Sadly our varsity team didn`t do as well as we hoped and lost their game 48-6. It has been a pretty tough season so far but we`re going to keep our spirit high no matter the outcome! GO INDIANS!

Saturday morning signaled the opening of archery season here in Pennsylvania. This also signals the traditional early morning search by Mister for all his accoutrements. Oh sure, he does spend the night before getting the necessities ready but trust me there will be something he forgot. Usually something very important-like his hunting license-which is what he was missing at 5 AM Saturday morning.*Rolls eyes*

Honestly does the man really think I have one blasted clue where his hunting license is at that time in the morning? Has he not seen me for the past nineteen years in my early morning zombie state? Does he not recall my vocabulary until I ingest my zombie cure of freshly brewed Folgers consists of ‘UGH’, ‘MORGLE’ and ‘BLECH’?

Needless to say I was no help in the license search.

While he was gone off sitting in a tree like a squirrel I did the morning chores and started on the wash. That took a goodly amount of time due to the teen laundry that reproduces in the hamper like randy rabbits. We did get some hay put into the barn for the goats during the break in tree-sitting by my husband and then he was back out until dark which would make him a flying squirrel I suppose. Like Rocky and Bullwinkle! But if he`s Rocky then that makes me…..well let`s just move onto Sunday shall we?



Another lovely day moved into the Laurel Highlands we were pleased to see! We three goatherders did some final garden clean-up in the morning. Mostly just gathering up the implements Mister seems to leave hither and yon (And he wonders why he can`t find anything) like hoes, watering cans and scarecrows. You know I kind of like scarecrows, really I do. They help scare crows and some even dance and sing about lack of brains but when a person reaches into ones shirt to remove the old hay and a mouse leaps out, that kind of kills the warm fuzzy feeling. Gads but I hate mice!

After the other two in my family got done laughing hysterically we got around and headed to a birthday party for my nephew. The lad has just turned eighteen. Hard for me to imagine since I used to baby-sit him and can clearly recall him falling asleep in his highchair and his pudgy face dropping into his spaghetti. Where the heck does the time go??? His mom and dad invited the family to our local bowling alley and we all had a really good time! Then we went back to their house for hoagies followed by lemon cake and ice cream!



When we got home we found we had some company awaiting us. Some friends of ours and their kids had come over for a visit. One of the great things about having farm animals is watching other people`s children interacting with them.



The goats are always the highlight of any visit and really who can blame people? Goats are good-tempered (If we don`t count Dynamite the demon buck) and are as affectionate as dogs. Kids seem to gravitate to them and the goats are always willing to get some free scratches!


We had gifts of pumpkins, corn shocks and Indian corn for them, also some garden taters.


Yup, it was a fine fall weekend here. How was yours???

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Beauties in Black & White

Freya







Calliope






Sometimes I just love the simplicity of black and white photography, and of course we all love our caprine beauties!






We`re joining the Saturday Pet Blog Hop this week! It`s a great way to find new blogs and new blogging buddies! And it is easy as pie! Simply add your link in the McLinky tool and copy and paste the code into your HTML editor.