We can again say that the weather for the week was pretty good for this time of year and we were once more able to get quite a bit done. The only difficulty with the weather is that it has been quite wet and we would like to have things dry out a little. The firewood that is just out lying around is not getting dry and the ground has been too wet to work. The soil sticks to the implement’s tools too much and makes a lot more work for the horses as well as not doing a proper job of it. If it is too wet it won’t work at all and continuing on just makes a mess that costs much more time to fix up later. Still we have pretty much cleaned up all the garden and laid compost and leaves on several garden beds. We have plenty more beds to make up but if they are not done now we can spread compost through the winter and finish them in the spring. As well, we will be able to spread a lot of straw mulch any time that the wind is not too strong and we will have gotten a head start on spring garden preparation by doing as much work as we can now, in the fall, and throughout the winter.
Meantime the kale and a few other things are growing still or at least are surviving. It would be much better if we were to have it all growing under cover. That is not the case right now but is what we are planning for.
All the animals are well and benefiting from the rather pleasant November/December weather. The sheep are roaming all the pastures pretty much going where they like and we let them roam so long as they don’t venture out of the pastures or go into the garden. The cows are confined for the time being waiting for the ground to freeze. Poor fences are the problem but what once that is fixed and the ground is solid and the sheep are on their proper overwintering pasture … we’ll have the cows out again. The horses are doing just fine too and looking quite good in their winter coats. The ducks and chickens are especially happy that it is not too cold. The chickens are laying eggs at a good rate still and seem to be pretty comfortable in their houses. Their doors have been opened each morning so the birds can all go outside but the doors are opened just enough for the hens to squeeze in and out so as to keep it a bit more comfortable inside.
The cow Tippy, an older Dairy Shorthorn, gave birth to a fine little bull calf early Sunday. They are both doing just fine though Tippy is bursting with milk meaning that Aerron will be milking her out to relieve the pressure. There will be plenty for the calf. Tippy has been prone to getting mastitis so she has to be given extra care. Photos of the new calf and Tippy for next week.