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I’m not usually one to make New Year’s resolutions. In fact, like Darby above, my reaction to the idea of me making and keeping a New Year’s Resolution is a good belly laugh. However, I have noticed that I DO need to make some changes in my eating habits … or risk having many fewer years left to enjoy and look after my critter babies. So – at the risk of making this move at the time of year that other people make New Year’s resolutions I’m setting myself a goal for this year. I need to be more aware and informed about what I should and can be eating to stay healthy. AND I want to know more about how much activity my days actually include. No more betting that the bowl of ice cream covered in maple syrup and peanuts is probably comparable to the extra work I put into a day! 😉 It wasn’t …

I decided to check into Weight Watchers. They have a good reputation – and they have a digital set up that lets a hermit like me manage a program totally using my cellphone and a fitbit bracelet. My first discovery was that I have been eating the diet of a wooly mammoth … while living in the body of a tiny meadow mouse. Well … okay … not so tiny meadow mouse. Ha! The WW phone app lets me scan barcodes on food items or manually put in recipes to see what would be manageable for someone like me wanting to improve my fitness and reduce my body weight. I’ve been pleasantly surprised at the choices I have to work with. The organizer in me had a delightful time drawing up a month long meal plan. That also makes it easier for the chief cook and bottle washer in our family – which is not me.

The next step was entering the activity in my days. Funnily enough the WW app doesn’t list raking manure, shovelling manure and cleaning barns. 😉 That is when I looked into a fitbit bracelet. My gosh! They have me totally hooked. This little thing is a computer on my wrist!

A year or so ago I bought a pedometer that I attached to my belt. I was trying to see if I could manage 10,000 step days. After I would finish my chores I would go for LONG walks trying to get closer to that goal – but always found it came up short – while my legs declared that was long enough. When I started with the fitbit this week I discovered the pedometer was likely not working (or I had programmed it wrong). According to my fitbit I can easily do 10,000 steps a day just working in the paddocks and adding a short walk around the nearby fair grounds. Plus this contraption measures all kinds of things like heart rate and distance and calories burned and … well you name it! I even wore it to sleep last night and was intrigued by the graph of my sleep pattern. In the last year or so I keep finding I am needing to sleep until 8 am – even though I am wishing to be a much earlier morning person. According the my magical fitbit my deepest sleep and the majority of my REM sleep happens between 4 am and 8 am! No wonder I feel like a zombie if I get up at six – or even seven!

I’m a happy camper – and excited by the prospect of slowly getting myself back into better shape.

We have beautiful trails in this area. I’m so glad the township decided to put money and resources into connecting our trails to the Great Canadian Trail. There are lots of places to park and walk – and many of them past our beautiful lakes.

This is Sharbot Lake.

I also made a resolution to try to figure out a solution to the ‘jenny wars’. Rosie and Darby are back into their ‘frenimy’ mode. If Darby walks into a barn – Rosie walks out. This gives Darby the power to keep bouncing her from spot to spot. Bella can remain where ever, with whomever and not blink an eye. I wanted Rosie to have a place where she could lay down and sleep regardless of what else was going on around her. So … the goaties got the boot!

They seem to prefer sleeping in the larger room of the Goat Cafe. Rosie fits perfectly in their little ‘anteroom’. (Formerly the Guinea Hen coop, formerly the Rooster Coop, formerly the Goat Bedroom.) Hence … this little spot is now Rosie’s Room! I’ll need to make a sign for that!

Rosie thinks it is DELIGHTFUL! When Darby lays her ears back and prepares to give chase … Rosie can duck into her own safety zone. Darby is too tall to fit in under the door. Hehehe!

When Bella tried to take the spot over I scolded her and declared the new spot was ‘Rosie’s Room’! I swear this was her reaction … she went and sulked in the corner. But don’t feel too bad – within a minute or so she caught a glimpse of her reflection in the glass and was totally distracted by her own beauty. 😉

Seems the chickens have also made a resolution… of sorts. Lily had decided she will rejoin the ‘laying group’. The two brown eggs are the Tweedle sisters’ eggs.

I mentioned to Edie the other day that I thought Lily’s comb was turning a brighter red. Look at me … being a farmer wise and experienced! Ha! But then – voila! There was the first Lily egg in a couple of months.

It was so mild today. Everyone was out and about. The chickens even followed all the rest of us down to the front paddock.

Our area is gearing up for a walloping of a rain and ice and snow storm. The fog is so thick we cannot see across the road tonight. But tomorrow the real excitement begins. Heavy rain – wet snow – freezing rain – light snow.

It will likely be a real test of our structures – and our trees. I’ve been working hard to get ahead of it … sometimes that seems to ward the bad weather fairies out of our path. 😉

I’ve laid extra straw in the paddocks to give some traction when the water freezes. Better a bumpy skating rink than a smooth ice surface.

The generator is gassed up. We’ve started it up and reviewed how to hook it into our hydro system. I’ve stacked ten bags of sand/salt into the Bota House ready to lay onto the Bully Road hillside path.

The jennies have fresh hay to munch on and I have stuffed their hay bags so they can just settle into their sleeping barns if they like.

Even Oz has taken control of his own shelter – under the Christmas tree! Yes – our tree is still up. I’m keeping it lit until the skies are still bright at dinner time. I love the lights and the glow it brings to our rooms.

So we are all hunkering down here at the Meadow. Good luck to those of you also heading into this wild weekend weather.

Love from the Meadow Mice

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