Saturday, July 21, 2012


I can't believe how much time has passed since my last post.

I've spent so much time lately weeding the jungle that swallowed my garden. I now have a row of what can be identified as onions. And a meek showing of lettuce. I found all but one of the tomato plants. The squash looks amazing. The potatoes could use a break from the grasshoppers and Colorado potato beetles. I also don't recommend weeding after a rain in your casual business work attire and dansko clogs. Really I don't.

In some ways, all the work we have been doing has been amazing. On the other hand I am so tired. We had some more losses too.

I had my first mercy killing a couple weeks ago. One of the guinea keets wasn't really growing and was shaking all the time. I thought it was cold. But 90 degree days in a coop isn't cold. Even for a little keet. It was more than just a shiver. Everything I read did not lead me to any good diagnosis. So, I asked J what would be the most merciful way to end the little guys suffering before whatever it has spreads to the others. So. I shot my first living thing. I missed, then shot again and J made sure it was done. Then, I cried on and off for the evening.

My friend Mary told me what her son, a farmer, told her. He hates that another being suffers because of his learning curve. Amen brother.

We also lost the second barn kitten. We left for work and she was tooling around the barn. And we came home and no greeting. No sight of her since. She was little, but already catching mice and wrestling boxers, but even so she was still small enough for a hawk.

Monday the dogs got skunked. Not so fun. Lot's of tomato juice baths later, they are still on the smelly side. I also left my camera out in the dog pen during a quick rain shower. It doesn't work anymore so pics won't be updated for a bit.

This is the part of this adventure that is not so much hard as it is profound in these moments and makes you (i.e. me) think of your (i.e. my) relationship and stewardship to other beings. In the moment I felt like a failure. Weeds, missing and sick critters. And then, one more guinea started moving oddly. Strangely I was grateful it just turned it's leg out. It limps, as one foot is off and not very usable, but if it eats, can get around and doesn't look to be in pain, it's a keeper. Tonight was the first time it made it onto the roost with the others. Even though it was not my doing, it felt good. And, I picked my first squash.

And, I really dislike grasshoppers. Really dislike.

And, I love J for mowing down all the weeds in the garden. It finally feels a little bit manageable again.

And we went to see Zac Brown Band last night and danced away my troubles, and went to someones house this evening for an impromptu session with several Nashville songwriters. Most moments life is good. Extremely, I can't believe what I did to deserve this good. But I could use a little mercy myself some days.

Monday, July 2, 2012

fast friends...

Ananda (boxer) and the new barn kitten are getting along well. I hope I don't speak too soon. He is still very intrigued by this furry little fireball.

This weekend I received a lesson in power tools and rebuilt the coop that came with Head Wound Harry the rooster. After cruising through my hatchery catalog I discovered Harry is a Sultan. It fits if you know him. I am loving his crowing in the morning. His turban is also growing back nicely. If I didn't mention it before, Harry is the lone survivor of a raccoon attack at my friends farm. We adopted him when she moved.

The coop that came with Harry I rebuilt with J's guidance. It now houses 5 little guinea Keats. They needed something a little more secure than a metal washtub in the laundry room. They became quite adept at the art of escape. I think they like the new digs and room to fly.