A ‘Beaut’


… of a day!

I’ve got my groove back! Phew! Takes longer to recoup from a busy work schedule than it used to. πŸ˜‰ Felt good to get up early today and get rolling on all kinds of things on our ‘To Do’ list.

At the top of the list was repairing the Bully Barn doors. As you can see they have been suffering from the attentions of the jennies! PLUS in the winter we have been seeing major flooding as January and February deliver crazy cycles of thaws. Last year we had over seventy freeze thaw cycles! The water runs down the hillside and over about six inches of ice … and then flows right into the barn!

Plan B involved cutting the bottom eight inches off the doors. We then screwed those sections right into the floor boards. The doors are now a bit shorter … We also lined that section of the barn with flashing which will hopefully guide any flood waters along and away from the doors.

Before I secured the flashing I lined the lower section with hardware cloth. I still have work to do on the doors. I’m thinking hardware cloth and then am also considering using wide lengths of flashing on at least one side. The wood is shrinking with age and on the coldest of winter nights is likely pretty draughty.

Cutting the doors up that high also means they are much easier to open. The paddock seems to be rising up to meet them year after year. πŸ˜‰ You can see the chicken ‘porch’ there on the left. With the great windows Heidi gave us! Thanks again Heidi!

Look at this girl! This is Sophie! She was then hen that needed a chicken saddle – felt lined even – so her bare back would not cause her to get too cold last winter. She is one beautiful black feathered creature now!

She spent the day looping in around our feet. I heard Ede a few times wondering who was pecking at her back pocket! Ha! I also filled in the gaps in the south wall of the goat’s house. The plexiglass is going to be such a great addition. It is much clearer. Already the goats were laying on their table there enjoying the sunshine.

You can see the chicken ‘porch’ here on the right. Then on the left the ‘Rooster King’ is hanging on the side of the hay barn. The next shelter back (blue wall … looks sort of like an outhouse door?) is the goat cozy room. It is about five feet wide by about eight feet long. An easy space to keep warm in the winter. They mostly use it as an entrance foyer in the spring, summer and fall. Next to that is the screened in goat house. This time of year we use tarps and the plexiglass to close it off except for ventilation along the top of the east wall. They have two raised platforms in there that they like to lounge on. The goat house is connected to the goat room by a little door with a flap on it. Beyond all that you can just make out the goat climber up on the hillside. I enjoyed watching them jumping and leaping over that rocky area this morning. It is good to remind myself that they have a good time even when they are just hanging out as a pair in the goat woods. This is the BEST time of year up there. No bugs, they can see everything out across the fields and they love running and scattering the leaves – just like kids! πŸ˜‰

While we worked away today I had closed off the back paddock. Bella was NOT impressed. I did give her a chance to stay in the paddock with us… But instinct prevailed and she felt she had to go where ever Darby went. (Which is unfortunate as this is the new moon … and Darby is an intolerable bully when these days roll around.)

A little update on Smokey. He has now had four days seizure free. I’ll be keeping my fingers crossed for quite a while yet. He seems fine – cuddly – active – devilishly fine. In fact, yesterday he got up onto the kitchen counter and then opened the cupboard door behind which Ede had thought she safely hid the newly baked plate of cookies! She returned to find the remains of one of them on the floor at the kitchen door … nicely trimmed of all but the raisons. At least he knows he shouldn’t eat raisons. πŸ˜‰

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