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May 30, 2009

Week of 5/25/09

Monday 05/25/09
Happy Memorial Day!
We enjoyed a fairly lazy and low key day; up until chore time this evening. That is when we noticed the bees were swarming! A huge cloud was all about the garden, 1000s of bees in the air! Within a few short minutes they were thick on a tree branch. We geared up and captured the swarm; it helps to have an extra hive handy!

Tuesday 05/26/09
Dave installed UV screens on the back porch today; they make a huge difference in the afternoon (porch faces west)! They are such a nice addition, making it possible for us to spend afternoons on the porch.
Dave also replaced the latch on the side gate, no more squeaking!
I did not feel like cooking so we had “fend for yourself” (aka leftovers) for dinner.

Wednesday 05/27/09
Hattie gave 2.5 gallons this morning. Vera is getting more used to us. She seems to be the babysitter a lot of the time—staying with Princess in the field while Hattie goes elsewhere to graze. Most Jerseys have an incredible mothering on instinct, if she was in milk I have no doubt she would have tried to fully adopt the calf.
Melissa sent over a bee hive, hopefully when the next hive swarms we can catch it for them. Tom stopped by this afternoon with homegrown beef and fresh shrimp, I love bartering!
Doodle came out from under the porch for an extended time this evening. We walked her to the pond, a special treat for her. I could not help but cry at the prospect of having to let her go to the Rainbow Bridge, sooner rather than later.
It is official! I will be traveling to South Texas to pick up our first sheep on Sunday. They are Gulf Coast Sheep; hardy, parasite resistant, good for meat, milk and wool.

Thursday 05/28/09
I made yogurt this morning, a different variety (culture). I really like the ones that can incubate at room temperature and not at a precise 110 degrees for several hours. The result for me is yogurt with a more consistent texture. I add 2 tbs of sugar and 1 tbs of vanilla to each half gallon.
For dinner I made cheese and chicken tortellini, (the sauce was homemade, not the pasta) with our one head of broccoli added in.

Friday 05/29/09
Hattie gave 3 gallons this morning; beloved cow!
It was quite hot today.
This afternoon after work I mowed the old chicken area where the melons are now planted. At least we can see the melon vines again!
The hens donated 3 eggs today.

Saturday 05/30/09
Only ½ gallon for us today, we slept a little later and the calf took a lot of milk!
I picked a few beans, tomatoes, strawberries and radishes. Max found the garden basket and stole some beans and the one large tomato!
I discovered another bee swarm this morning. By the time I got geared up I had the distinct displeasure of watching them leave!
Me (in bee suit): “Wait! Come back! I have a new condo for you! Where are you going! Come back here you dang-blasted bees!”
Bees (heading north to the woods): buzz, buzz, swarm, buzz, buzz!
I busied myself getting things prepared for the sheep that arrive tomorrow.
I am very excited about them!

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