Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Return of the Lack (ey)

Above is our daily greeting.

Goodness it's been a while since I wrote. So much has happened and I don't know if I'll fit it all in one post!

The young 'uns are growing rapidly. Mono has put on 3.7kg since he first arrived and it's mainly leg. He still looks skinny but it's obviously because all the food goes straight to his feet. Marley and Gizmo are on the verge of being called sheep (Spencer is still little (er) though), Sid is bounding around like a madman and scaling anything in sight (including us), the chicks are massive and the roosters have started crowing.

The lamb feeding is diminishing with only Spencer still being fed 3 times a day (cutting down to 2 next week). All three sheep have been unwell recently with Spence contracting scabby mouth presumably from the live vaccine, and both Marley and Gizmo (and to some extent, Spencer) got infections from a wrongly placed injection (no fault of mine or Marty's) in their cheek. So they each got another injection in their neck to try and counteract their ailments. Poor girls. But they're all looking much better and happier now.
We're still having problems with the horsey boys but I'm going to get stuck into some regular work with them now and hopefully they'll come right before Christmas. And we'll have Sarah (the equine therapist) out again before then as well and she may also know someone to give us a hand with retraining Brother.
The aviary has gone beserk with weeds and they're popping up faster than I can pull them out. They've almost completely engulfed the potatoes and raspberries. I don't even know where to start with that area!
We've finally planted stuff in the new vege garden. Mainly tomatoes of various varieties but also the corn (which is looking great!) and some cannellino and borlotti fire tongue beans. Also a couple of zucchini, cumcumber, pumpkin and watermelon. So now, once again, we are running out of room to plant out the seedlings from the greenhouse and we'll probably need to make another patch. The next one will be dug out by pigs though - it's tough going. I'm also keener than ever to get some bees. I just have to convince Marty...
We've been down in Wellington over the past 2 weekends. Both have been quite busy with parties - Rach's 30th and Renata and Brian's retirement/been in NZ 40 years. Mum and Richard were on animal minding duties (thanks!) so they had their work cut out for them.
Jen came back with us last Sunday and stayed until today. It's been great having her here. Sid obviously took a shine to her because it's only been in the past couple of days that she's been approaching us at all. And Mono adored having another person to play with. And, of course, it was just nice to spend some time together, something we haven't done in a long time. AND, she helped me with weeding and horse training. Awesome! Not to mention the ongoing animal feedings and cuddles...

Withing the first half hour of Mum and Richard starting their minding duties, I got a panicked call from mum saying that Gizmo wouldn't eat and one of the chickens was missing. Rita had gone AWOL as revenge for kicking her and her friends out of their nests because they're all broody and not laying. When we got back to the farm I stalked her and uncovered her hideout...

in an iris with 10 eggs! So I stole her eggs and she has since gone back to the coop. Sill chook.

Sid took up a lot of our time while Jen was here because she's just so funny. The lambs were a bit upset at the lack of attention they were getting but it got them eating some grass which is good

But of course they weren't completely left out...

And Mono got some quality time too - once he decided he didn't want to eat my face...

Anyway, there is much more to say, I'm sure, but dinner is on it's way (good on Takapau co-op for delivering fresh fish to our door every Thursday!) and I need to turn my brain off in preparation for work bright and early tomorrow morning. I thought this time of the year would be quiet but apparently I was wrong and work has gone crazy. It's good for the holiday season but I'm spending a lot of time in the car.

Ok, I will be more prompt with my next post, I promise.


K :)

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Quadruped Mugshots

Flighty Dino

Feisty Brother

Evil-looking Sid
Mum Fungus

Soon to be mother, Eidel

Little Spencer

Cheeky Gizmo

Rascal Marley

Monkey Mono

Monday, November 10, 2008

This week is going to be restful

Another eventful weekend has come and gone and life has resumed its normal path. Friday saw us return Beetle to the SPCA which was hard to do but necessary. He is now being fostered by another girl who works there and hopefully will find a nice home with people who love him. We also officially adopted Mono. He has settled in well but it may be a different story once Bella leaves and he is the only dog in the house.

On Saturday Trish and John arrived in the area and we met them at Arran Station, a big horse event venue in Takapau (where Mark Todd trained for the Olympics!), for the One Day Trial. We had perfect weather and saw some great competition. Trish's horse, Woody aka Kaitawa Eve, was competing being ridden by another girl, Laura. Unfortunately the Locker-Lampsons were late so missed seeing them in the dressage and show jumping that day. But Arran Station is a beautiful place. It's been really cold here recently so all the mountains are covered in snow and made a beautiful backdrop to the showjumping ring and cross country course. I'm glad to know where it is now so we can go to more events there.

Of course, Saturday night wasn't a relaxing night with the election on. Disappointing outcome but I'm glad Grant Robertson got Wellington Central over Steve Franks. That would have been a nightmare! I dread to think. Anyway, I don't want to go into the election except to say that I probably got to bed later than desired seeing as I had work on Sunday and didn't prepare for the super early wake up call thanks to Mono deciding that it was play time at 5am. He was in the laundry but Trish and John's room was directly above him and would have kept them up. So up I got and found the light on in his room which probably brought on the wailing. I took him back to bed with me where he proceded to scamper all over me and Marty and chew everything in sight. So that morning was not the most pleasant.
Marty made an extravagant dessert for that night though that nearly killed us all...

After work on Sunday (!?) I met up with Munm, Trish and John at Arran Station again for the cross country. Marty and Richard had already become tired of the event and had gone home to shoot rabbits. The remaining 3 had a great vantage point by the water jump and so we sat there and scoffed almonds and slowly cooked ourselves to a crisp in the bright sunshine. Because of work I missed Kaitawa Eve again but heard that there had been a problem at one of the jumps - and not the water jump where they expected it. But it was great to watch and made me desperate to get back into horse competitions (minor competitions, that is! No 6 ft jumps for me just yet!).
In the meantime though, Richard managed to shoot his first rabbit...

As I said, it's been really cold here recently and 2 days after I bravely decided to plant out the zucchini and cherry tomatoes, we got a severe frost that almost did the zucchini in. All their leaves have turned black and they are not looking very happy. The next night I managed to get the frost cloth over them and I'm hoping they'll revive themselves. The tomatoes are suffering a bit but nowhere near as bad. I'm surprised the sweet banana chilli has weathered the storm, so to speak.

But on a positive note, one of the cherry trees is laden with sweet red fruit. It's so nice to be able to go and scavenge in the aviary. I'm still waiting on the strawberries, raspberries, grapes, blueberries, black currants and logan berries though! Soon, my pretties....

And the purple wisteria is in full force at the front and back of the house. The white one is on it's way and should be out in a few days. So here are a few photos of the garden at present...

The wisteria at the front of the house

One of the many varieties of rhodo

The garden framed by a front

Pretty genko tree and others as the clouds pass

One of the dogwoods

We're heading to Welly this weekend for a bit of a fiesta so hopefully will see some of you then.

And I apologise if this post is a bit disorganised layout wise. The computer changes it every time I upload it for some reason

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Ever expanding responsibilities... I love it!

Well, Mono's brother arrived at the SPCA on Sunday and we declined fostering him. But on Monday we went in to adopt Mono and saw him, a little 'black' lab that really is almost chocolate. He was on his own at the SPCA and not very happy so we ended up leaving with him as well and still not adopting Mono due to the fact that he had to registered int he pound for at least 7 days before being put up for adoption. His 7 days are up tomorrow so on my way to work I will go and fully adopt him. Beetle, as we have named his brother, will unfortunately be going back to the SPCA on Friday and there is a person looking at adopting him. I hope he finds a nice home.

They had their first vaccination on Monday and Mono has been booked in for puppy pre school next week where he will learn a few manners.

When I arrived home this evening, just in time for Home and Away, Marty announced that Fungus had given birth to a tiny little kid. Such a cutie. Unfortunately she doesn't seem tobe feeding it so we may have another orphan on our hands. But if little kiddie hasn't had any colostrum from Fungus it has a slim chance of survival. Here's hoping. So gorgeous and as yet unnamed. Suggestions welcome....

Meanwhile, we are still looking after Bella who is slightly jealous of the new pups and has put them in their place a few times. But she still manages to get a bit of play time in

But it is almost time for the mass feeding of everyone so I better head off. Gizmo is not very well so she's getting some yummy acidophilus yoghurt in her feed for the next few days to try and balance out the bad bacteria with good bacteria (just like ont he ad :)