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Destroying things

Posted by Angie on April 12, 2014 at 12:50 AM Comments comments (0)

A change of events has been going on around the farm....Frik has been/is being a real SOB to Fran (I discussed it a bit in the March 19, 2014 post), but he is getting worse! Check out Fran's neck:

Awful, isn't? Her neck is raw and looks incredibly painful. Poor Fran (I am a huge Fran fan now).


I haven't reported on Daisy and Duke for awhile. They're fine. Actually, they're more than fine. The two of them strut around Ginger Goat Farm like they run/own the place (all 60+ pounds of Duke and 50+ pounds of Daisy). It's quite cute. The unfortunate thing about the Dynamic Duo is they LOVE LOVE LOVE to put anything/everything in their mouths and drag it anywhere and anywhere. We find tree branches under the couch, rocks in the pool, and chewed palms leaves still hanging off the tree. If they can wrap their mouths around it, it will be chewed, moved, and left.


However, I can't complain too much, they haven't done much of the "classic" puppy chewing behavior such as chewing up a favorite, most expensive pair of shoes (or even worse, just chewing up ONE shoe) or gnawing on the side of a chair leg or chomping through an entire couch (but I do have to admit, my throw pillows on the couch bit the dust months ago). But I'll tell you, those Indestructibles dog toys are total BS. Check out what the Dynamic Duo do to "Indestructibles" in 30 minutes:

That ball under Daisy's (on the right) foot was orange (it's now clear)...the cover is behind and under her back paws. And the ball Duke (on the left) is playing with, half is by his back leg and we have no idea where the other half went (maybe he ate it). THIS PICTURE WAS TAKEN 30 MINUTES AFTER THEY GOT THEIR TOYS. THIRTY MINUTES!!!


Indestructible???


Yeah, whatever.

Puppy-Duck Throwdown

Posted by Angie on March 19, 2014 at 11:30 AM Comments comments (0)

Here's a quick preview of what we do to entertain ourselves around here:


PUPPY DUCK THROWDOWN


(This was filmed about a week and a half ago....Fran is no longer hanging around the pond...she's dutifully sitting on her clutch for the past eight days!!!!! Keep your fingers and toes crossed she can make it for the long haul.)


Daisy is the one "herding" the ducks...Duke--as usual--would rather sit back and watch.

Baby ducks.....Maybe???

Posted by Angie on March 6, 2014 at 2:20 PM Comments comments (0)

It's been a bit busy around Ginger Goat Farm for the past few weeks...with the addition of the Goat Cart (or GG; see February 19th post) we have had the opportunity to do some exploring that we really never had the opportunity to do before. We have discovered that the State land behind us is absolutely breathtaking. We have a whole new perspective--seeing it from a vehicle rather than slogging along in rubber boots and being pelted in the face by tree branches. All and all, GG has been a great purchase, for fun as well as for utility (taking the garbage cans [a quarter of a mile] to the road for pickup, getting mail, picking up yard debris, running over fire ant hills [hee hee]).


In other news, we might--MIGHT--be hatching baby ducklings sometime in the near future (well, WE won't, Fran might [see Sept. 24th post]). Supposedly, Pekin ducks are not very broody (i.e. don't sit and incubate their eggs), but Fran has been sitting on her clutch, off and on every morning, for the past couple of months:

At one point a couple of weeks ago, she had 18 eggs in her nest, but after about 3 days, she had given up. However, about a week ago, she started back up again. We had read that the first few clutches might not work for a young female duck. So, we have been keeping an eye her nest and whenever she pushes any eggs out, we get rid of them (right now, she has about 7-9 eggs in there).


Frik doesn't make it all that easy for her to stay put, either. Every morning when we let them out, she remains on her nest and Frik waddles out as fast as he can. Frik is almost taunting her--sort of like back when we were kids. It's almost like he is shouting, "Na na na. I'm going to play outside and you have to stay inside. Na na na." Then, to make it even worse, after about an hour outside, he gets even worse, he starts splashing around in the pond and runs back and forth in front of the duck pen. I swear, I almost hear him yelling, "Wahooo. Wheeeeeeee.....". He can be quite a stinker.


Also, because he doesn't have Fran around most of the morning (for their dirty dancing on the pond, wink, wink), he starts harassing the Chicken Posse (if you remember from an earlier post, the hens put the ducks in the "friend zone" a long time ago). Typically, the hens just squat and take his harassment, but this last time when we let the girls free-range around the yard, they fought back. Hard. Seriously, it was like watching a bunch of little old ladies swatting their handbags at some little punk at the mall. It was great. I am totally Team Chicken Posse when there is a throwdown among the chickens and the duck(s), even though Frik is outnumbered 10:1. I'd take a picture, but I am too busy laughing.


Frik is still a sweetheart, but he is like a walking hormone around the hens. Typical boy....

Bittersweet Day

Posted by Angie on January 2, 2014 at 5:40 PM Comments comments (4)

It is a beautiful day out here at Ginger Goat Farm...a sunny day with white, puffy, cottonball clouds high in the sky and a gentle breeze. It's in the low 80's so, it has been a perfect day to "deep clean" the duck pen (as much as you can deep clean the duck pen) and to take care of some other odds and ends around the farm.

 

 

Anyway, while I was out pulling some weeds in the garden I realized that Sheila, one year ago today, died. Sheila was our dog that moved with us out here. She was almost 15 years old and she only lived at Ginger Goat Farm for 7 weeks. I am still pretty emotional about it and that's all I want to write about her and what happened on this day last year.

We have Daisy and Duke and I love them (as they are both napping at my feet while I type), but they're not Sheila and I have to move on (as any dog lover knows and understands).

Wow...it's been awhile since I last posted...

Posted by Angie on December 19, 2013 at 2:00 PM Comments comments (0)

October 30? Sheesh, time flies. It's been a blur these past weeks (err...months). Seriously. Nothing really earth shattering has been going on, just enough that everytime I get ready to sit down and post (and/or feel inspired by something that happened around here), something else diverts my attention (who knows?...it might be an unexpected, later-in-life onslought of ADHD). Whatever, I apologize for not sharing some of our stories lately. I WON'T let it happen again.

 

Well, about a month ago we celebrated our one year anniversary here at Ginger Goat Farm, and like every other event that occurs in life, the anticipation of the date was more exciting than the actual day. I don't mean to sound all  "Negative Nancy," but I think you know what I mean. For example, think about your graduation day (from high school, college, 8th grade, whatever...). Remember how much you couldn't wait for that day to come? And then, when it did happen...after it all happened...you were sort of like, "Meh!"

 

Our one year anniversary for Ginger Goat Farm was a day like any other day out here...taking care of the animals and trying to (still) get a handle on everything. Daisy and Duke (the Dynamic Duo) are HUGE. Duke is over 60 lbs. (62ish) and Daisy is over 50 lbs. (54ish). I just snapped a pic of them earlier today:

Daisy (or Crazy) is in the foreground giving you her sexiest pose with her come-hither eyes and Duke (or Stinky, see the last post) is in the background with his size 15 ears (on a size 8 body), probably farting up a storm (that dog has a natural born "gift"). They're good dogs (hard to believe in a month in a half they will a be YEAR OLD!). They no longer sleep in crates. They sleep on the floor, next to our bed every night (and Duke "dutifully" licks my face every morning at 6AM to let me know it's time to wake up).

 

The chicken posse are happy girls. Just about everyday we get 10 eggs--which is pretty good considering we are heading into winter (shorter days usually mean less egg production). They still squat and want to be picked up whenever we go near them.

 

Frik and Fran are fat and sassy. Fran has laid an egg pretty much everyday for the past month (unfertilized, which is weird because we see them "gettin' it on" just about every morning on the pond, see last post). Duck eggs sorta taste like chicken eggs, but not really. Last week, I made a pumpkin pie with some (epic fail). Every once in awhile, I fry/scramble some ducks eggs--we can barely tell the difference (they're more "yolky"). We heard that we could sell those suckers for a BUCK a piece, that might be our new business... Duck eggs are huge:

 

FYI: The chicken egg (the brown one) is an extra-extra large egg (we can barely fit it in a standard egg carton). Yeah--that's how big a duck egg is (and the yolk is more orange than yellow).

 

Well, I have to go clean a duck house (because, unfortunately, they just don't clean themselves). Next post, I'll share with you some of our adventures in cooking (because if we are going to grab a hold of this whole homesteading thing, we [well, really mostly me, Billy is a really good cook] have to start cooking and eating the stuff around here).

 

CORRECTION: DUKE IS 59 LBS. AND DAISY IS 51 LBS.

A Delicate Situation

Posted by Angie on October 30, 2013 at 8:00 PM Comments comments (0)

I haven't posted anything for awhile; it's not because nothing has been going on--quite the contrary--we have been super busy pulling it together around the homestead. Among some of the things we have done include (finally) containing the chickens in a *luxurious* run of their own (i.e. we can now start a garden without them scratching/digging the hell out of it), hooking up the water solar panels, installing a PV system (it's not quite done yet, but we are on our way!), and just all around cleaning up around here. 


All of the animals are doing well. We think that Frik and Fran might have "gotten it on" (finally! [see September 24th post]). A few mornings ago, I was out doing my morning chores and--I am pretty sure--I saw Frik ON Fran in the pond. Which is excellent news on so many levels because:

  1.  Maybe he will stop raping my hens (or whatever he is trying to do...they don't like it, and neither does Fran).
  2. Fran will stop (or at least curtail) her incessant quacking.
  3. They will now hang out on the pond (their "love shack") and quit hanging around the front porch, pecking on the front door and shitting everywhere.
  4. We might have baby ducklings soon (and NOTHING is cuter than baby ducklings).

The hens are doing great. Still squatting whenever we come near them (see August 29th post) and laying 9/10 eggs everyday. We are eating A LOT of eggs and egg-type foods around here (I am actually cooking EDIBLE foods!). In fact, here's a picture of a spinach quiche I made awhile back: 


It was actually quite delicious...and it wasn't a fluke! I made it twice and both times it was good. I am quite proud of myself because I am not that great of a cook. Honestly, I am quite terrible at it (there are lots of reasons why; they just culminate all together and create this hailstorm [me] in the kitchen.


Anyway, I'll quit beating around the bush. I have to admit we have one *small* problem around here. It's a delicate situation.


It's Duke.


He smells.


REALLY bad (I wish I could hyperlink a "scratch-n-sniff" to this post to give you an idea of how bad it is). I can't even begin to describe the odor he emits (maybe rotten eggs, mixed with mildew, mixed with dirty hippie hair...and a dash of dead fish. It's dreadful).


We have no idea what to do. Now that the weather has (finally) started to cool off around here, we have transitioned most of our work to outside chores (as you read at the beginning of this post), which means we let Daisy and Duke run around and be puppies. It's awesome. They run, play, swim in the pond, roll around in the wetlands. It's so cute and we love to watch them. However, after just a day (maybe just even an hour of it), Duke is RANK beyond explanation. Daisy isn't, but Duke...a totally different story.

If you remember, quite a while back, Billy took "charge" of Daisy (well, as best as you can "take charge" of Crazy Daisy) and I took Duke (see May 28th post). And I'll be honest with you, I totally thought I got the better end of the deal...as Daisy is absoutely nuts. I do love him (and Daisy) with all of my heart, but it is extremely difficult to snuggle with your puppy when he smells like:
  1. rotten eggs
  2. mildew
  3. dirty hippie hair
  4. dead fish
All rolled into one.


I've tried everything...baths everyday (I know that isn't good for him), Fabreeze (I know that isn't good for him, either), dryer sheets...anything and everything. He still stinks, but look at him:


(Duke is on the left, Daisy is on the right [he is now around 58 lbs., she's around 50]).


I mean, c'mon, look at those puppy faces. It melts your heart, but unfortunately Duke also melts your nose (and sometimes almost makes your eyes water). I am hoping that he is like most teenage boys I know...they stink (usually like Doritos, dirty feet/shoes, Old Spice, and mold)...and they grow out of it (usually after they graduate from college). Are teenage puppies the same? He is almost 10 months old. Wouldn't that make him kind of a "tweener*?


He should grow out of it, right? I hope so because these nightly baths are killing me (and he isn't all that fond of them, either).

Daisy: Undercover Duck Agent (Duke: Uninterested Bystander)

Posted by Angie on August 8, 2013 at 2:10 PM Comments comments (0)

Life at the farm is as expected in Florida during the (nearly) mid-August weather--again proving my theory that H+P=B/F (see July 11th, "Deep Thoughts While Shoveling Poo" post for full explanation of my H+P=B/F theorem). And my theory is especially true when it comes to the ducks, more specifically the duck shit. Holy Mother-of-God, gnats and flies SWARM around those juicy piles of poo (again, see July 11th post [paragraph 4] for full details on duck poo, a 180 from my duckLING poo assessment [see March 27th post]).

 

It is amazing that Frik and Frak remain as white as the driven snow while wallowing in their filthy stank. Their cage (oops, I mean their bachelor pad [see April 23rd post]) is beyond ripe...it's vile. Regardless of how many times or how thoroughly we clean it (and we do, EVERY day), it is still just dreadful.

 

Many people ask us why we still keep Frik and Frak around (or when we are having them for dinner...and when I mean dinner, I don't mean inviting them in for pizza). I don't know, as much as they piss me off (pooping on my sidewalks, harassing the hens, pecking (incessantly) on my front door, following me around then running away when I want to pick them up, etc., etc.), the two of them still have a tender spot in our hearts. I cannot even begin to explain why, but they do.

 

Daisy also has a tender spot for them in her heart (or maybe she just considers them to be playmates, as Duke tires of her quite easily anymore).

Awhile back, I was concerned that Frik and Frak would gang up on (Crazy) Daisy and goose the shit out of (or kill) her because they were bigger than her. Well, now that she is bigger than the ducks (Daisy is tipping scales at right around 40 pounds, Duke, 43-ish pounds), I thought that she might tear them up (I wasn't so worried about Duke (Hefner [see June 12th post] as he is more interested licking himself [see July 8th post] or napping).

 

I know it may not be the most responsible "pet-parent" thing to do--letting Daisy and Frik and Frak have their version of the WWE throwdown in our backyard--but seriously, it's kind of fun to watch (so don't report us to PETA or anything). Anyway, the ducks are having just as much fun as Daisy (plus they're working out some of their "frustration" of not having any "fine-looking ladies" living around here [see July 11th, "Looking for Duck Love in all the Wrong Places" post]). Unfortunately, we have not found a suitable match for the boys (well, we found a pair of sisters, but it wasn't a love connection for Frak; he can be quite picky).

 

So, our evening entertainment around here (after we corral the hen posse back home) is letting the ducks and dogs out and watching them (well, really watching Daisy and the ducks--Duke typically is licking himself or napping) tossle back and forth.

 

That makes it official....we're country people.

A fine line between a hug and swat on the butt

Posted by Angie on July 19, 2013 at 5:55 PM Comments comments (1)

Do you ever have one of those days that you wonder, "How can I love my dogs (or kids or husband or ferret or whatever pertains to you) yet, at the same time, want to beat the ever lovin' snot (something my grandma used to say to me when I did something to piss her off) out of them"?   Well, I am having one of those days.

 

Earlier, I spent the majority of my day filling in a very long, fairly deep ditch that we previously dug last week (we fitted water pipes and electric conduit out to the chicken/duck complex). Believe me, it was NOT an easy task--moving dirt BACK to where it was in the first place in the sweltering heat (I had to before the sky opened up to our regularly scheduled mid-afternoon storm). I was sort of meditating (like when I shovel poo [see July 11th post])--working up a really good sweat from a somewhat decent workout...and I walk in the house to this:

Nice, huh?

 

Not.

 

I hold them both equally responsible. 

 

And yesterday, I was just bragging to my mom how good they are.

 

I spoke too soon.

 

Arrgh.