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The Peeps are Here

3 May

Thirty-eight little things arrived in the mail this morning.

day-old chick


chicks drinking


I wasn’t expecting them until the week of May 5th, so I really wasn’t planning on them being here until about Tuesday.  I was going to spend this weekend doing a thorough cleaning of their pen and getting everything ready.  You can see the dust on the hexagon shapes of the chicken wire.

chicks behind chicken wire

It’s a good thing I had already picked up the starter feed. (Yes, it’s in a banana boat)

chick perched in banana boat

This is the only one who can say, “Look!  I have feathers on my feet!”

feather-footed chick

Of course, none of this answers the age-old question, “Which came first?  The chicken or the egg?  She didn’t even mind modeling for me.

chick & egg in wine glass

It’s hard to believe that twenty-four hours before this picture, that cute little chick was tucked inside an egg that size.  I wasn’t happy with how the picture turned out, so I tried again with a different model.

chick in wine glass

I was having a hard time with the glare on the glass.

chick in wine glass

This chick really didn’t like modeling, so we only got a couple before I returned her to her friends.  I might have to try again.  I wonder if I have a fancy teacup buried somewhere.

Sharing with Scavenger Hunt Sunday (items in bold), I Heart Macro, Macro Monday, Weekly Top Shot, Farmgirl Friday, and Shadow Shot Sunday

Who’s Idea Was It?

2 Mar

I called my nephew today and asked him who’s idea it was to calve in March.  You might remember I told you that Norma Jean could calve March 5th if she were bred the day she was put in with the bull.  A week ago, I didn’t think she looked too close (that’s when all these pictures are from).  I thought she might wait until closer to the end of the month.

Angus/Gelbvieh cross heifer

I think it was wishful thinking.  Looking at her today, I wouldn’t be surprised if she calved at any time.  I am really hoping she waits at least until next week because we are stupid cold again.  She might.  It’s hard to tell with heifers, and especially when their udders don’t drop as much in the cold.

Angus/Gelbvieh cross heifer

My brother-in-law already had one of the heifers calve, and they lost the calf because of the cold.  In these temperatures, you only have about an hour to get it dried off.  We have record-breaking cold again tonight.  They’re saying about -20*F/-28.9*C real temperatures by morning.

Angus/Gelbvieh cross heifer

My nephew told me that a farmer a few miles from us was trying to keep his calves from freezing their ears because he sells them as breeding stock and he thinks they sell better if they don’t have short ears.  He’s putting stocking caps on their ears and tying them on with pantyhose.  He also froze his hand to the calf puller when he was helping deliver one.  It’s just stupid cold.

Angus/Gelbvieh cross heifer

It’s crazy.  These temperatures are about 35* below our historical averages.  Usuallly, it’s pretty safe to have them calve in March.  I’ve told Norma Jean to keep her tail down and her legs crossed for another week.  I also asked my nephew to check her during the day when I’m at work and told my son to check her every time he drives by.  I’ll be checking her quite frequently too.  With any luck, this will all turn out okay.

Sharing with Shadow Shot Sunday and Farmgirl Friday

If You Wait Ten Minutes

21 Feb

1.  You’ve heard the expression, “If you don’t like the weather in Iowa, just wait ten minutes.”  Well, yesterday, that was the truth.  We woke to fog, had rain, sleet, hail, snow and wind.  It was a very sloppy weather day.

foggy pasture

foggy morning

rain on windshield

rain in the morning

muddy gravel road in fog

mud puddles on the gravel road


hail late in the morning

2.  About two weeks ago, I forgot my appointment to get my taxes done. I’d say I can’t believe I forgot the appointment, but that was the time I was dealing with a minor crisis each evening.  I dropped them off, and I got the letter yesterday that they had them finished.  I have awesome tax people.  I knew they’d get it done before the farm taxes are due the first of March.


Rain, but I didn’t photograph the scary to the ground lightening or thunder.


rain and sleet sliding down the window

rain, sleet and hail

rain, sleet and hail all at once

sloppy gravel road

made the gravel roads even worse

3.  I need to have my bulk bin filled with corn again.  I’m a bit nervous about that because the bin is in a tough spot to fill (nearby electric wire).  The driver is not very good at problem solving.  I’m seriously afraid of how this will all turn out, especially now that there’s more ice than snow.


The snow arrived in the afternoon,

giant snowflake

in giant snowball like flakes.

snowy barn

Everyone has been stuck inside all day.

4.  Have I mentioned that I ordered new chicks for the spring?  After losing a couple this winter, I’m down to twelve.  By the time new ones arrive and grow up, it will be winter again. Well, I’ll have too many eggs again eventually.  In the meantime, I’m getting an occasional egg.  So far, Honey hasn’t laid any in the kitchen.

snow by deck rail

Birds will get more food tomorrow when it isn’t just dumped and covered with snow.


Then the winds picked up. See the snow going sideways.

5.  I found out today that Norma Jean could calve anytime after March 5th.  Well, I hope the weather changes and she has no problems.  I’m really not excited about helping a wild heifer give birth and hauling a calf in the back of the Ranger to my kitchen to dry it off.  But you know I will if I have to!

Sharing with Random 5 Friday and Farmgirl Friday.