Friday, April 26, 2013

Oranges; Garden Pics# 4&5; and Squash!

 Just a few of the baby oranges on our tree at home-and we thought it was dieing!
 Garden Pic #4
 And #5-Things are looking good! Even despite the fact that the frost has nipped it twice now.
One of the squash! I took this pic last weekend, so it's even bigger/prettier now!

The milking is coming along quite well. Lady is such a .... well, sorry,...a Lady! She stands still mostly-she doesn't like flies at all! We haven't started keeping her milk yet-probably will start on Monday. I took a pic of what Jeff got tonight-about a gallon and a quart. We poured it up and will leave it out to see how much cream settles to the top. Curiosity is just killing us!
Enjoy your weekend! We've got a busy one planned!

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Lady had her Calf!!

 Here she is, yes, a little heifer. And she is TINY! She must have been born late Saturday or early Sunday morning. Cathy, mom's neighbor, said she saw them on Sunday. She didn't know that we weren't even looking for a calf yet. Mr. Tom told us she was due in 2 to 2 1/2 months when we bought her, which would have made her due at the end of May at the earliest. Guess he was wrong on his dates! And by the looks of her, she most likely is 1/2 angus, not the jersey we were hoping for, but she's a keeper anyway!
 Lady and calf were way in the back part of the pasture behind Cathy' house, so we brought them up closer to the house and barn. Jeff finally just armed her up while Sheila and I took pics.
 Our first look at watching her nurse-she has a very healthy appetite. This picture shows just how small she is, she can stand underneath Lady! She nursed strong, had foam dripping from her mouth!
 Jeff's first go at milking Lady. She behaved very well! The flies are driving her crazy, though. She's not putting up much a fuss and is standing still considering this is her first milking as well!
The bowlful of colostrum he got. This morning he got a gallon and tonight a little more than a gallon. We weren't ready to start milking yet, we thought we had another month or so to go. Jeff wanted to get the floor in the lot concreted in before he started milking, but I guess Lady had other plans. We think she'll probably take another calf with no problem, it's just finding one.
I had the updated garden pictures ready to post, along with this past weekends bee updates, but the cow took over! I'll try to get them posted in the next few days. We've been getting some really good rain showers the middle of every week and got some due in later tonight, along with another cool front. It's not supposed to get out of the low 60's tomorrow. Then a quick recovery back into the 80's by the weekend.
We are meeting Randy and Casey on Saturday in Sugarland for their 4-D ultrasound of the baby, then Alana's giving them a baby shower on Sunday. So another busy weekend and now we have to figure in milking somehow! We are waiting to hear from Jeff's Dr-he's supposed to be setting up some x-rays and possible a MRI. He hasn't had any in over 3 years so we need to see how much deteriotion has happened. Hopefully, it won't have been much, but he's in much more pain than he was then.
Have a great evening!

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Barn Clean-Up, Garden Pic #3, Mulberries, And Lady

 I mentioned a few posts back about the barn clean-up. Well, this is one of the before shots, and....
 the same area, but now with our rabbit cages installed. Jeff hauled in a few buckets of sand in and it's really helping with the drainage and has it leveled out nicely. It still needs some work, but at least you can safely walk through it, even though it still does have some poison ivy in there! :(
 Garden Pic #3-With a slightly cloudy day, it's kinda hard to see how well things are growing.
 Shorty's mulberry tree is just loaded with berries! Every year I say I'm gonna pick some and make jelly, maybe this will be the year. There sure are alot of them and they taste SOO good once they are ripe!
And last of all, Lady is starting to fill out quite nicely! We hadn't spent much time with the cows in the last week and she snubbed us a little when we walked out to see her. We brought a halter to put on her and she kept walking away. Jeff started petting her and she just stopped and he was able to get the halter on her with just two tries. She is just the neatest cow and so easy going. Hope it stays that way after the calf is born.

The weather turned off windy, cold and rainy today. It'll be down in the low 40's the next 2 mornings, but at least no freeze warnings. We sold 1 rabbit yesterday and still have quite a few. We made sausage out of some old bucks last week-very good stuff! I've been getting LOTS of snow peas from the garden, don't think we've ever had this many, and these were from saved seeds-yeah!

Saturday, April 6, 2013

Bees and more Bees!!!!

 We did pick up the package of bees in Navasota this morning. We had a beautiful drive up there-blue bonnets everywhere! We got back before noon and got to work hiving them right away!
 The queen cage-the workers will eat their way into the box she's in and let her out in the next few days.
 Shaking the 10,000 worker bees into their new home-with Tim's help.
All tucked in and ready for their new lives on Yeager Farm! Sugar water feeder full and hay stuffed into opening to help keep robbing down until they get established and strong!
 Then on to bees #2 for the day. Our county commissioner had let Jeff know several months ago that he'd cut a tree in his pasture that had bees in it-he even captured some and brought them to church in a jar to make sure they were honeybees! So we went over to their house to check on getting them. Our friend Tom, who used to have many, many hives, went along to help out and give MUCH needed advise!! Above is a picture of where they are going in and out of the tree.
 Jeff is beginning to cut away the tree on either side of what they determined to be the hollow part. This is where all the excitement started. Note that he is in t-shirt and cap!
Immediately after taking that picture, the bees went on attack!! I had to get out of there very quickly with Kaytlynn and Jordan. They were all in his hair and did end up stinging him right in the middle of his forehead. Kaytlynn and I didn't get stung, but Mac and Jeff did as well. You have to understand, the bees were very docile up until this moment. We had even been sitting on the log next to the entrance!
 Remember me mentioning the cap and t-shirt? Now notice the longsleeve shirts and bee veils!! LOL! They continued with the cutting and also got out the smoker which REALLY calmed the bees down. Hindsight is 20/20-should have got all the equipment out FIRST!
 Jeff giving Kaytlynn a hunk of honeycomb fresh from the hive-Yummy!
 Jordan got a special treat-a lesson on how to work a backhoe. He was in hog heaven-even after being stung  by a bee! He got to dig a hole-then fill it back in.
Is this not the face of sweet? No, really, she had honey all over her hands and face-it was dripping off her fingers and here we are down in the woods with no water to rinse off with. It's a wonder the bees weren't after her! We keep telling people she's our little bee-charmer. She's never really been scared of them and even when we were trying to make our hasty retreat, the bees weren't after her-only Jordan. She will tell you real fast, though, that one was in her hair!
We left the log in the woods and will go back on Monday evening to try to hive them. They have a plan on what they are going to do, but it will have to wait til nearly dark when most of the bees will be back in the hive and settling down for the night!

Friday, April 5, 2013

Cows, Tractor Dog, and Fruit Trees!

 Oreo and Cocoa pushing each other around-well maybe! The red one sure has been looking more and more like her Dexter parents lately. The BIG bull in the background is the one that keeps jumping the fence. We think he might have bred Oreo and Sugar this last week, so we'll be checking dates in three weeks to see if they come in heat. Jeff and I fed them all bread this morning, and that HUGE puppy just stuck his big head right over the fence, stuck out that LONG tongue, and nearly sucked my arm straight into his mouth! All we could do was break out laughing-something THAT big is So tame.
 We spent most of the Easter weekend cleaning out Mom and Shorty's barn. I took some before pics, but want to wait and post them with some good after ones. We did get a place cleaned out for the rabbits and got them moved in on Saturday evening. And for some reason, Rascal decided she needed to ride the tractor with Jeff. She actually climbed up the steps while we were talking and just settled in. Jeff had to finally make her get down-she was in his way!
 This isn't a good pic-it was cold and windy-but the orange tree we thought was going to die has just been full of blooms! And they smell awesome! The bees think so too!
 And this is one of the lemon trees in bloom-they looked just awful, too, but now are full of blooms.
And the best of all-these are little apples on 1 of our trees-we are SO excited! Hopefully they will make it to ripe, green, tart apples!

We've had another busy week and another cold snap as well. No freezing temps this time, just COLD. We had a wonderful Easter with Sunrise service at 7 am, then breakfast, Sunday School, and a PACKED house for services. The guys had to bring chairs into the center isle, then we had to leave the doors open and people had to sit outside! It was such a great site!
We go in the morning to pick up another package of bees. We haven't had the best of luck lately-until today! The hive we bought from out of Ohio last year didn't make it through the winter and the one Jeff captured from the fallen tree didn't make it either.Shorty's bees swarmed today while Jeff was still there and he was able to capture them!! He cut the limb off the tree they had gathered on and got them installed in the hive! Only problem, he never thought to get the camera! :(   I'll take it with us in the morning and take new pics as we get them into the new hive.
I'm dealing with a pretty good patch of poison ivy on my left arm. The barn had quite a bit of it and I was wearing sandals, so I half expected it on my feet, but not my arm. I mixed up some lavender, tea tree, and peppermint essential oils in a base of vegetable gylercin and have been applying it to the bottoms of my feet twice a day and putting it directly on the blisters. I don't know if its my wishful thinking or not, but it seems to  be clearing up faster than usual. Hopefully it will be my new cure for PO.