The sky is clear bright baby blue. The air is crisp. It’s not above freezing yet. I bundle up with my dog Ruby and my camera as I do chores. I am giving her a break from her puppies (she just had a litter Nov. 24th) as they always want her feeding them. She is an incredible mother but she too gets tired. She so looks forward to her time doing chores with me. I couldn’t ask for a better companion. Ruby and I are quite the team. So, we pack up and head out, all bundled up.
We feed Radar – grand sire of the little puff balls in our utility room. He sleeps inside with us but in the morning he is outside ready to do his male patrol system thing that seems so wired in the male gene. We love that about him. He is so protective and attentive to our farm. Next, Ruby and I head over to the chickens. We notice the entire bird netting roofing is torn down now. The fall leaves I never blew off are weighted down with tons of snow. The sheer magnitude of fluffy whiteness crushed the net ceiling and it’s now laying in shredded swaths across the entire chicken run. Oh well. It’s too cold to worry about that today. I throw out all the squash seeds, pulp and rind that I had just processed this morning in the kitchen. I am dehydrating a bunch of squash for preservation purposes. The waste goes to the birds. Next, Ruby and I head to the riding ring barn where Mike is butchering our beloved Studley. Studley was our grand sire Nigerian Dwarf goat who was far along in years. We have loved him dearly. He passed away on Christmas Day. We harvest sustainably here at our farm so Mike was harvesting the hide and fur so that we could make something special and remember our beloved Studley. I check on Mike and that process and load up the ATV with four bales of hay. Ruby and I then head down to the livestock barn and throw out bales for two of our quarter horses, our goats and our sheep. I quickly head inside and grain the ducks and the turkeys. I notice that a wild critter killed yet another one of our ducks. That’s been four ducks killed in the last week. Ruby watches all the action and patiently waits for me while I fill water buckets and capture a few shots of the herd. Next, we head down to the horse and cow barn. Two of our quarter horses that live down there are waiting for us along with our three cows. “Moooowwwwww” rings through the valley. I tell Rosie she needs to be a little quieter and more polite – she’s waking up the neighbors. I throw out more hay and pause as I look at the big Christmas wreath on our barn. It seems like yesterday when we hung that up. How time has flown this year. That was Thanksgiving and now Christmas is already over. I can’t help but look up at the mountains and the open fields of this valley. It is so peaceful here. It’s as if this place where I live and farm is completely disconnected to the outside world that seems to be reeling in chaos. I don’t like that world so much. I like this world of mine so much better. My puppies, my Ruby, my amazing husband who loves this farm as much as myself, our critters. What a blessed morning…..doing chores with my dog.
Here is a photo gallery of my day this morning with Ruby doing chores: