Thursday, March 20, 2014


The ewes and the goats are now friends - after the initial period of not seeming to like each other, they now hang out all the time. The only difference is that the sheep are too pregnant to fit through the gates, and the goats can go pretty much everywhere on the farm (fences don't stop Maggie and May!). Sometimes they graze with the ewes, sometimes they hang out with the chickens...and a lot of times, recently, May has been spending time with Thomas. She seems to be flirting with him...she leaps all around him and head butts him gently. Thomas (luckily) is way too slow to even try and ram her. 

Zoey is slowly learning the ropes of being a farm dog. She still tries to chase the chickens sometimes but mostly she just wants to stalk the other dogs. 

She is 12 weeks old now and all legs!  Abby is teaching her the fine art of mulch pile digging.


Between the (giant!) broiler chicks (500g at 2 weeks!), the seedlings and all of the regular chores we've been busy! 

So many tomatoes...

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Transplanting Away!

I couldn't have asked for nicer weather for my two days off. It was sunny and warm and it felt so great to be outside and working in the orchard doing our first outdoor planting. 

This was a pretty nice view. Relaxing with their babies:

 We transplanted our broccoli, kale, lettuce, arugula and cauliflower. We're hoping that the thick layer or compost on the first row of the orchard will keep weeds down - we planted the seedlings into little holes that we dug down through the compost. 

Broccoli and lettuce seedlings in the compost:

Our new piece of floating row cover to try to keep flea beetles from destroying the little lettuce seedlings.

Zoey had a fun-filled weekend, too. We went downtown, to the vet for shots, to puppy class, to the feed store and the pet store, to another farm and to lunch at a she got to play with our landlord's daughter again. Zoey loves to stalk Abby and Ryan when they're playing fetch. She flattens herself onto the ground and then lifts just her butt up when they're running towards her - then she spins around and races along next to them. She's getting fast!

The twine that is always attached to her in the photos is for us to step on quickly when she decides that she'd like to play with the chickens. She's pretty good about hanging out with them (and eating their food) but sometimes it's hard for a puppy to resist the chase of a flapping, erratically moving chicken.

Spot the Zoey:

Maggie and May aren't sure what to make of this little puppy.

She's 11 weeks now and 9.5 lbs - growing up fast!

Sunday, March 9, 2014

Allergic Puppy

This will have to be a weekly photo as Zoey grows!

Poor puppy had an allergic reaction to something - her face swelled right up in the middle of the night and she was whining and shaking her head and unable to sleep. She went to puppy class yesterday so it was either some new treats she had there, an insect or plant of some kind, or a new type of bully stick she was chewing on in her crate at bed time. We gave her some benedryl last night and some more this to the vet tomorrow if it isn't better!

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Winter Spring

It's still hard to figure out if it's winter right now or if it's spring. On the one hand, we still have snow everywhere and it was snowing again today. My hike this morning was a slushy mess...but the dogs had a good time! Zoey ran around for almost the whole hour - she just needed a small rest zipped up in my vest when she got too cold and tired.

My friends Emma and Jess came to visit last weekend. We had a good time that included Emma throwing a halter together and taking a snowy ride on Sam. 

On the spring side of things, guess what's in this box?

Chicks, chicks and more chicks! Our 50 broiler chicks arrived today (the pink dye is to mark that they were vaccinated). 

Unfortunately, it's pretty cold outside for trying to keep chicks warm. Nathan set the brooder up with 3 heat lamps in the 'barn house' (the section of the original barn that has been insulated and has flooring) and the chicks seem to have plenty of warm spots in there. 

Chicks spread out  - a sign that they're warm enough. 

We put a chick waterer in just in case, but they've already figured out the water droppers.

Baby animals lambs yet, but look who's back!

Meghan and Meghan's calf (now called Missy) are back with their calves, Mac and Molly. They are so cute and very curious about the dogs! Some fences will have to be fixed to be calf proof, though - the calves can get under one side into the neighbouring paddock and then don't seem to be able to get back to their moms again. Their moms get very upset when that happens!

And then there's the baby animal that's keeping us the busiest at the moment: the puppy. Having a puppy isn't necessarily hard work (other than the stress of making sure to socialize and train her well!) but it sure is time consuming. You can't take your eyes off of Zoey for even a second or she'll have a power cord, a piece of the carpet or Ryan's foot in her mouth. She is a great puppy so far - outgoing and playful and silly. She loves all people and dogs and she is pretty respectful of Abby and Ryan. Abby has decided this week that Zoey is worthy of play time. 

Puppy in sunny leaves - she was so happy to be out of the snow!

She loves the warm greenhouse.

Meeting our landlord's daughter. 

Having a 4-year old around who just wants to ask the puppy to sit and then feed her lots of treats is great for socializing.

She also decided that the puppy needed a hay blanket.

Abby showing Zoey the ropes.

While not watching the puppy and taking care of the animals, we've been busy planting lots of seeds. Yesterday we planted over 300 tomato seeds.

Nathan built an awesome table in the greenhouse that's under some of the extra greenhouse plastic. It's perfect for hardening off the seedlings since it's even warmer than the greenhouse and protects the seedlings from the cold nights. 

Broccoli, arugula, cabbage, cauliflower, onions, lettuce...

Seedlings on top and mushrooms growing underneath.

The mushrooms look really cool growing out of the bucket that Nathan made.