Thursday, December 15, 2011

A special Christmas Angel

It was over 10 years ago and the Christmas time was an especially tender and memory making one for me. It was almost Christmas and my house was not decorated in its usual lights and brights. The smell of baking didn't fill the air....Piano playing was soft and noise kept to a minimum because...No parties or dinners planned...

Dad was terminally ill and had requested that the hubbub be kept to a minimum.....He knew I could be a bit "too much" at Christmas, with caroling everywhere, baking, singing at Church, too many functions, a minimum of three large trees etc. etc. etc. All he wanted for Christmas as he said was a quiet one... His eyes had a far away look in them as we both spent so much quality time together......The house was decorated only two ways,,,, with a very old bonsai tree I had bought for his gift and a very old and tattered Nativity scene from my days as a child...He was so fascinated with the bonsai tree that was years old and seemed to look at the Nativity scene with memories in his eyes.

Just days before Christmas, after a hospital stay, he was moved into an inpatient residential hospice because his pain could no longer be controlled at my home. He had so outlived his life expectancy by many months. He had been very open with me all along about his wishes and that I was not to allow him to be a burden. As a former Hospice Director years before, I knew I had to let him "go on" and not cling to him. We'd had months of time together and shared thoughts and emotions that were never expressed before.

The inpatient hospice was wondrous, new and inviting with volunteers and family rooms and even a library....But it all seemed a bit surreal as the true reality had sunk in that this was the beginning of the ending of time on this earth for my Dad. He was a firm believer in Heaven and what awaited him....I had no doubt either, but it was harder than I would have anticipated to "let go".....

I especially remember one late Winter afternoon, just as the sun was setting, there were carolers in the outside Hospice courtyard....I heard Silent Night, sung so sweetly and gently as if just wafted in on pieces of soft clouds, not the loud blare of noise found at malls where the sound was bombarding you..Peaking quickly outside to see them, I remember thinking this must be what heaven sounds like - all love and smiles and kindness and in tune..

And later that evening, there was an almost inaudible knock on the door. A young girl with her mother wanted to give me a homemade angel. I walked in the hallway and shut the door ever so quietly....I bent down to look at the angel and than the young child who looked about 7 or so... I listened as she told me that she and her Mother made angels every Christmas and gave them to families to let them know there would be an angel to help the new angels find their way to heaven. Her mother said that she had sat with her own mother for years making angels to give especially at Christmas time...But that she continued the tradition of angels with her daughter in remembrance of her mother....

I thanked both of them and started to go back in the room, as I felt my eyes begin to overflow, this little girl tugged on my sweater every so gently and said that I could keep my angel and it would remind me of my angel in heaven.

My angel from her is now a bit dirty and dusty and a bit tear stained but I never put it away, Sometimes I move it around in the house, I've traveled with it and it's visited many places and even been overseas. It's been in my car.... and sometimes when I just was having a rough time, it's been in a sweater pocket.

I wish I knew this family's name so I could thank them so for this special Christmas Angel I got so many years ago...... For me, it is a symbol of so much, but also of the selfish love of this family as they extended comfort and love to those they never met in such a personal way as they only could give.... So,

No matter what your celebration for Christmas might be, I pray you will have the kind of time that you either receive and/or give a special Christmas Angel.

I write this with much love for my Dad and those who have a way of stepping up to fill a need........It's Christmas time, may it bring you, Hope, Love, Joy and Peace!

Monday, December 12, 2011

A different Season of Christmas this year.....

This shall be a different Season for our household. It has been medically recommended that I avoid close contact with people, crowds so that I don't become a host for any more germs or problems. I have several serious health problems and appear to be a friendly host that invites germs and medical problems to live in my welcoming body....I know that it will be a big no no for church or any gatherings where there's not a lot of space and open air around me. I shall so miss the companionship of family and friends. For those of you whom I usually hug, just remember I cannot right now! Although it's only been a matter of hours that I've been told I need to self impose a basic isolation, I cry a small bit about it, no laying on the bed, whaling out loud, just the little pattering of a few tears.

Although the self imposed quarantine is time limited. I know I will not or rather I say I pray I will not always be this frail, I can only imagine how someone would feel if they were invisible to the rest of the world. I can so empathize with bubble babies who have such serious problems that they never come into direct contact with others.

I miss people,especially at this time of year. I love to sing the Christmas songs, share the festivities and rejoice...I do need to remember that I do have a piano lovingly moved from our other house and music and so this might be a time to play some tunes... I love to sing with choirs, I shall listen to them from tapes and cd's or at a distance. I feel like there's the glass wall between me and the rest of the world. I'm in a prison called "My Frailty" I shall take this time to do things differently - maybe write down memories of Christmas's gone by....Since I'm over 40 smile, I better get busy because there have been quite a few Christmases that I remember. This too shall pass. I cannot believe that God wants me to live like this the rest of my life... But should that be the case, I'm open to hear where He shall lead me.

Well, it's time to go in the kitchen now and look for the ingredients for a simple soup, some homemade sourdough bread and salad. May we all remember to be grateful for our health most of all and treasure these temples God has given us and be more concerned about the state of our physical well being than the state of the clothing or jewelry or shoes which may adorn it....

Thursday, December 8, 2011

My man, his dog and the little puppy!

The Garry Farm has a special friend named Ken who runs an organic farm in Tallapoosa. Last year we bought a little puppy from him who was raised by one of Ken's adult females and that little puppy learned how to keep turkey safe from predators.

Well we got the call about 3 months ago that the very same adult female needed to be rehomed as she was digging out and was very bored without enough animals to raise!!! So we got her and was told that there would likely be a baby on the way....She was bred too young (before Ken owned her) and apparently that set our biological clock for a small litter, that she normally had 3 or less litters.

Jacque thought that mother didn't need a welping box. I begged for one and when He found mother and baby cozied in under some weeds, but no trees and no real shelter, he set to work immediately on a large box.....project completed just in time as the rains came in that evening.

This is a beautiful picture of Puppy who is now for adoption. Very Clearly both Mother Dog and Jacque are very proud of the puppy....

Saturday, December 3, 2011

A 4 year old Elvis impersonator

Why is it that certain memories never leave us? I was four years old in kindergarten at the Home Park School in Atlanta...It was Monday morning.... (I don't know what date, but certainly still remember this after all the decades).....

My teacher was playing the piano as our little class and the 2 other kindergarten classes were also in assembly in the giant auditorium of Home Park School in Atlanta (It now is the Center for Puppetry Arts, last I visited) She asked, "Are there were any songs that we boys and girls wanted to hear?"

Those of you who know me well, can predict the next even....Well, I shot my hand in the air and jumped up and down with great enthusiasm that day. She asked what I wanted to sing .....I said "ain't nothing but a hound dog"....

Mrs. Peeples, said "well, I don'tknow that song, but if you hum it first, maybe I can play it.....It sounds nice." Well, I hummed loudly.... and then she started playing the piano.....I did a very good impression of the guitar playing of Elvis, the wild singing and facial gestures but the real kickers was when I started doing the Elvis twist.....The piano music stopped. My teacher and all of her very large personage (at least it seemed very large to a 45 pound small child) dragged me to the principals office by my arms while swatting my backside . She also told the class what a very bad girl I was. I remember not even being able to touch the ground at one point. She was a very strong and stern teacher and just terrified me that day ....and the ones that followed.

The principal was equally upset. I was put then in a corner in a chair while I waited for my mother to come and get me. Dad had the car and she walked the long way there. She saw the tears and told the principal that the girls were in bed. But I said I had cracked open the door and gone to see the TV behind them because I liked hounddogs......Well, the principal didn't smile but I could see my ordinarily sedate Mom mouth twitch but I thought she was going to laugh at any minute. (You see I had seen the world famous tv introduction of Elvis on the tv on the Ed Sullivan show!)

I was suspended from school for 3 days..... That was fine with me. I never wanted to go back....That was the day (the second week of my formal school - that my burst of childish enthusiasm for public learning died and the great enthusiasm for being at school. I felt embarrassed, shamed, mistreated and scared, never knowing what next would happen at the school that I saw as a Giant Scary Castle like in the Wizard of Oz....).....My Dad did place a note in the file and told both the Principal and my teacher, that there would be no more corporal punishment by the school - that they as parents would be responsible for that and yes, I still got parental doses as needed. I spent many days the rest of that year trying to avoid school...Those tummy pains I think were quite real...Eventually we moved and I went to a new school where I could "blossom intellectually and creatively" .Don't worry I completed many more years of schooling including college but only because my parents so encouraged it.

Never underestimate the spirit of a small child, how you can encourage it or discourage it or the influence of music to catch our imagination and spirit! Wouldn't it be wonderful if we could just imagine what is in the mind and spirit of those we don't understand.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

It's all in a day's work......

Milking at 4:00 am or say 4:30 am to get ready for a trip into town....

I have strangers who drive up wanting to get advice of under anything under the son, not just farming, it's okay, it's part of being human. Maybe I could just show them a bit of how much God loves them. When allowed/asked I pray with visitors or give a shoulder....It's my privilege...If that stop by takes 10 minutes or an hour, so be it....

When life watching the animals is so much better than watching any television show.
When the guineas circle the house 15 times at exactly 5 pm and then run like maniacs to the woods...What's that about??.... Are they saying hello or just telling me it's time to go milking!!! Farming has its funny moments. Its laughter at times like this. Its moments of extreme hardship like 10 days of frozen land and hand carrying hundreds of gallons of warm water so 400 animals do not perish. Sadness in seeing a beloved member of the farm family die in childbirth that the best of vets cannot save.... Extreme joys of rescuing baby bunnies in the throes of dying or visually dead by warming them up slowly and working for as long as an hour or more with them in front of a wood burning stove to save it.

Getting dressed in a hurry only to find out, once you've gone to town in an errand to find out that your shirt is not only inside out but backwards....Why I always keep an extra jacket in the car.....

Why a rubberband is my best fashion accessory..... If I haven't found the hair brush yet, it holds that wild woman hair look down....

Why the customer's need is always first. I just got ONE fresh duck egg for a customer, forgetting to change shoes, nearly sliding into the fragrant duck pen and laughing all the time.....

When someone calls and has a problem with an animal, I'll help them, it's okay, we don't charge for that...... When someone has a problem with incubating, I'll help them learn to calibrate a hygrometer and a thermometer so they can have better hatches, whether they are buying our eggs or someone else's. I'll never get rich but I'm here to help.

When I'm asked what vintage shop I buy my clothes.... I just answer, "Oh they're in my closet or You're too funny, I have shoes that are older than you!" I never say boots because we wear off our boots in about 1 year at about 10 miles a day.

Why love must be the operating principal in a full time farmer's life.... When a person comes by at a market and says...."Whewee you must be proud of your vegetables, $1.50 for fresh potatoes, I can get them for less." I bite my tongue not to say yes, but a bargain now is not a bargain for your health now or later. After I explained we farm for a living - our only way of living and farmed chemical free. I just smiled benevolently at him and didn't tell him his potatoes from that bargain store were sprayed so they wouldn't sprout, and 10 10 10'd to death... "I just said Oh you can taste the difference in our vegetables and he said he couldn't afford them. Then asked if we take charge cards. We don't and won't. He opens his new Leather wallet with hands that look manicured and looks through a stack of $20's and says he better not??? He left market, lit a cigarette and started up a new Mercedes and opened a can of Coca Cola.... I could have found him several ways to save money and get $3 worth of potatoes.... But I realize many think farmers should just price their food as if it were 20 years ago...That we come to market as a hobby..and should give away our work.Poor man will drive to his store, leave the airconditioning on for his dog he leaves in the car, get ready made stuff and shake his head and tell his friends about those expensive potatoes..... I never defend our prices .... Just smile and give them a look of compassion/pity.... I did offer that if he wanted to volunteer to work on our farm side by side that we pay our volunteers with farm knowledge and hands on experience and fresh veggies....He looked at me like I was insane... I gave him a card and told him to call me sometime.

But life is always different, minute by minute.... The general agenda can be set, but flexibility is key... If vegetables don't sell, they are frozen, prepared, shared, canned, but never waster.... Plans are made and real farmers will can in a 110 degree kitchen and just say, it's all in a day's work.

Well, baby goats are crying for their bottle, it's time to go outdoors and my rest writing is over. I'm so blessed by seeing the change in the seasons, the wonderful friends and fellow farmers, our supportive community, learning that I can do things far beyond my age or physical stamina through the help of many, but most of all by leaning on the Lord. He is my strength and salvation, my ever present source of comfort... My all in all........

Blessed by a husband who loves this City Girl who's gone full Country and would be content to be on the farm all her remaining days, but does have to venture to town occasionally and leave this wonderful place called The Garry Farm.........

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Sleeping on a Bed of Nails

As a child I was fascinated when reading about different countries and customs. I checked out books about Albert Schweitzer, Archeology, and every foreign nation I could find. I wasn’t sure if I just wanted to see them all or convert or serve every nation, or just eat the food there. But I read and reread my fathers volumes of National Geographics. and there of many wonders I uncovered, I was fascinated to learn of people who put themselves in a trance and were able to sleep on a bed of nails. Well I never was brave enough to do that but often thought about those pictures and wondered how they stood that pain or if they felt it at all….Well, I lived in Atlanta at that time but with my heart in rural Alabama, I would share bits and pieces of my acquired knowledge of the world apart from the mountain…

Always a story weaver, I would show them the pictures (if I still had the library books, or I would smuggle a copy of my Father’s treasured National Geographics. I had a vivid imagination and thought about what kind of magic or spell could be cast that would cause a person to do such a scary thing…. When I showed the pictures to my country buddies, they would say, “That there guy, he just ain’t right”. Their mothers said, “Poor thing, he’s tetched in his head”. Since every one wasn’t as worldly as I, some even said, well he’s surely sick, look at his poor head and of course they were referring to his turban.

Well, I told my passel of country cousins and friends I wanted to make a bed of nails, they just shook their heads and just left me alone. They made allowances for my city breeding…. So I decided to recreate the happening. I looked around in my Granny’s barn and saw nothing that looked like a bed of nails…No such luck, but I did find a broken board and a hammer with a broken handle and a little snuff tin full of old nails that had been saved along the way. I learned quickly although I was very little, that as I hammered my fingers and a few nails into the old board and then found I had not planned well, as I hammed them into the top of an box, that I would never have a bed of nails. I would never know if I could fall asleep on a nail of beds this day in my life!

Back then there were not warnings in magazines or on tv or in books to “NOT try this without adult supervision” or other warnings….Yes, in the country there was never a lack of things to do. There were acorns that waiting to be turned into a tea set. There were places to explore that never got digital photographs or photographs of any kind…..berries to pick, jam and jelly to test for Granny, tin roofs to slide off, cookies to make from scraps of Granny's pie crusts, creeks to jump….. watching spiders write their names on their webs…. No phones carried on me texted or phoned interrupted me. No computer lured me to some urgent e mail, report or other such temporary thing. Discovery of arrowheads waited…Each day was new to me and a time of joy and exploration. Here’s praying every one has time off from their technology…time to plan, read, do, dream, hear, learn, renew, rest, vegetate, time to be….We need that more than ever in our over wired society.….There’s a whole world out there for us all…. Thank you Lord that I was not a child of technology.

Sunday, May 29, 2011

A land flowing with milk and honey

"Exodus 3:8 And I am come down to deliver them out of the hand of the Egyptians, and to bring them up out of that land unto a good land and a large, unto a land flowing with milk and honey."

The phrase came to me today, this beautiful Sunday, May 29, 2011.... A warm day but not a hot one....We're closed to the public for sales, and praising God and rejoicing in our blessings and spending special time thinking, pondering, learning and growing, and listening and reading His word.

Having spent the morning with the goats tending them, and all the animals, and then pouring up part of the recent honey into jars, this verse comes to my soul.

I think back now of coming to this small farm in Bowdon so many years ago, going through the years of looking for a farm place that would be called our farm home... Where we could garden and be in a small, peaceful and Godly community where we could grow in our faith and better serve Him. He called us to the place with a name we'd never known because after all our self directed efforts, He just brought us here, when there was no where else to turn and in our praying He heard our heartfelt desire. We knew the minute we arrived God had led us here. A place I first spelled as Bowdown...And truly it fits our situation. We had been wandering around Georgia and Alabama and even looking further out and He placed us here in His Time. When I see the beauty around me, the bees drinking nectar from the honeysuckle and vegetable blooms, when I milk the goats, my soul has turned to this Bible Verse. Thank you Lord for your bountiful Love and that You give us What We need in Your time....

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Remembering Mother!

Mother's Day.............A time to remember Mother.

I had a wonderful Mother. She was always so well organized, well read, well prepared, well dressed, loving and giving. She had a card file for recipes, shopping lists, birthdays, everything... She didn't fit my idea of a woman who grew up on the farm, but I didn't know her very well, until I left home and I became a mother. I never knew until I was grown that she was the first child of her family to graduate from college. She went to school in a one room school but that never stopped her.

My phone was my link to mother. I called her with requests of many kinds, for recipes of butter cookies from long ago.

I called her when a 6 year old sat on a pencil on a school bus and the pencil lead broke off in her. I called her when I was so sick or so tired or so discouraged.
I wrote her cards...I took pictures...When I lived away from town, I came to see her but not nearly enough.

When I had not heard from her on the phone in a long time, my Father called me to tell me of my Mother's decline, of her massive loss of weight, of her depression after she lost both her daughter and then her granddaughter in such a short period of time. Of her loss of connecting with others. I rushed home to find a mother who no longer wanted to live. She had lost her way and was suffering so.

But I prefer to think of my mother as the delightful, cheerful mother who let me go shopping with her, as she tested new lipsticks, I tried on hats just across from her and as I modeled them with my silly little girlish charm, I was just the clown in the hat department. I catered the ones with flowers and large brims, but I was also in love with smaller hats looking like they had real bird nest in them! She looked so beautiful when she went to church, gloved and shining and perfect hair and that charming Southern smile that was so genuine.

I remember how she would let me lick that wonderful batter bowl. Or make "her kitchen" so dirty as I made iced cookies with more powdered sugar on the floor than on the frosty. How I could play the Beatles records and do a loud sing a long. How she never fussed and only laughed (at home, away from school) when she had to pick me up from kindegarten after I danced way too much and twisted for the whole class (after seeing Elvis sing on the Lawrence Welk Show)...

I know I was quite a lot of a child to raise from infancy to young adulthood. My imaginative attitude toward life, coupled with the Joy of Living must have challenged her beyond belief. My thinking more like a "boy" than a Girl. My wanting to change the world in one day!

Momma, you've been gone from this earth for over a decade. I miss you daily and remember you with much love and laughter. Thanks for giving me such a base of love and prayer, faith, and hope! For tolerating me. For tending me and mothering me past those first 18 years! You will always be perfect in my eyes, heart, soul and mind! You blessed me and many. You are not forgotten...

I love you and know that someday we will meet again... I warn you my earthly hands are rough and nails are dirty and I have the markings of a farmer woman....I went to live the life you left and our family has come full circle. I love farming. It is my calling and my passion. But I understand when you had to pick that cotton that made your hands bleed and hurt and your small back ache as you carried that ever increasing load. I know it must have been so hard for you, when what you wanted to do is fill your hands with a book or a pen and a pad of paper... What a sacrifice you made. What a woman you were. I thank you always.

You taught me love and sacrifice and joy and so much more..

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

To all those who live out their Love!

I love it when folks live their lives in love...They have a perpetual smile decorating their face. Love is their motivator, their reward, their life guide. They demonstrate it in their attitudes, their spirit/soul, in their actions. They are those that rejoice with us, mourn with us, listen when no one else wants to hear anymore "about it". They know effortlessly what we need and don't ask, they just do!!! They want to credit, no applause, no medals. They love because they know and show God's love. They are spontaneous and they joy in life - in butterflies, in birds, horses and a lovely sunset. They need no fancy, they have the whole world on their plate and all the glorious world to see.

If we've hurt our hands and cannot move them, they show up with meal, flowers and a broad smile and a gentle hug.

If we're confused, they stand by to pray with us, to listen while we "work at the confusion".

They help us weed the garden. They take out the garbage, drive us around and to much more to list.

They are great handholders and shoulders when we need one. They make sacrifices for us but they simply do not ever complain. It is their joy to be our earthly angels.

They inspire us, move us to tears of joy and compassion, they show the way to live and love. Plainly and simply they may not be rich in wealthy but they are wealthy in their Love and know that Love shared multiplies. Thanks to all of those who are among the richest of us all. That love and care at all times and this is the joy of their life. Nothing is ever too much because they fly like eagles with the Lord uplifting them and giving them strength....They make one of my favorite Books - Love by Leo Buscaglia seem somehow shallow. After a day of working at a local food pantry, emergency center, they change a shirt and they're off to visit a nursing home, drop by a hospital, go to a funeral home and still back in time for evening church and choir. The givers are of all ages, sizes and colors from all walks and runs of life.

There's a song with a Line that goes, "People, people who love people are the Luckiest people in the world" Barbara Streisand was the singer.... The song intended mainly for romantic love applies to agape love too.

Thanks to the lovers, the givers, the doers of this world. May you never grow weary and may you live a long life of loving.....

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Easter is several weeks of sweet goodbyes

When we sell our pet bunnies, I really interview the people who want to buy them, but  they are really not aware of the interview process....I find out if they have ever had bunnies, what they know about bunnies, what their expectations are in terms of care, maintenance, and the long term commitment.  When I sense that it's a whim, just a spur of the moment decision, I explain that we have had bunnies live over 10 and 12 years, that this is a major commitment.

When I sense that there is no understanding of the care needed we review what a bunny needs to prosper,  I share handling and feeding techniques.  If I decide they are fully ready for the responsibility we proceed with the sale, but we do Not sell when the nursery is not ready for the baby bunny or if for any reason we feel that the bunny will be neglected or harmed in any way.

God gave dominion of the earth to Adam and Eve but with it I believe there is a responsibility to see appropriate placements.   So if you come to our farm to shop for chicks, bunnies, goslings, ducklings, expect not to rush in and rush out....We care about our babies and take their placement very careful.  Expect to learn and be able to ask questions and make informed decisions....This is an educational process.  We want our animals to thrive in their new home, so give yourself time to look and ask questions,  We will not rush you.  We're hear to help you... The picture is of me saying goodbye to Digital Photography by Christy, one of several photographers who bought Easter bunnies.   I take the time to let the babies say goodby to their bunny mothers and let the mothers know they are leaving, and then I kiss them and say a prayer over them with closed eyes.... praying over them and their new owners.   We love our babies and want you to love them a long time to, through the teen times and into adulthood and old age.  We are just as serious as when we sell ducklings, poults, keets or goslings... You see we love all our babies..

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Why we cook in bulk?

It's as easy to cook chili for 10 as chili for 2...Besides when I cook for 10 to 12, it only lasts two meals.My husband expends over 10,000 calories in a regular day.....That's a lot of food needs, especially since he doesn't eat much bread or desert.So what's for dinner tonight.

Cottage pie, with layers of potatoes, spinach and kale and 3 kinds of homemade cheeses.  (cooked 8 pounds of potatoes the other day, this will give us enough extras.)

Apple pie - making 2 will freeze 1 for later.....apples from the farm frozen over the winter....yum..... Then some tapioca blueberry pudding with our homegrown blueberries and fresh milk...yum...refrigerator rolls and open a homecanned green beans, serve with pickled beets and some home canned pears....It will be soooo good!


Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Wonderful semirestful Tuesday...Farm waits for more babies!

Jacque and I lazied out this afternoon...We ate lunch at a lovely Bowdon Mexican, Loco Mex restaurant, mailed some hatching egg boxes and came home and watched a few movies....The rest was so needed.    A mini vacation.  The sun is so bright this afternoon, it seems to be blinding...I think it's because this morning was so dreary and almost foggish.....A London kind of morning...  Well, I'm looking forward to the next few days....

In anticipation of the birth of buckling? and/or doeling...According to the calendar of "exposure, confirmed by blood tests", the Milk Goat mother should be due anytime in the next 5 days.   When I'm in the Labor and Delivery room, I feel so inadequate.   It's so important to "model" calm and sometimes that's hard.  Most of our goats are pacers when they are in labor and if in extreme pain they paw at the ground... We want to be there at the birth to help the mothers but we want mother to take the lead...Of course the baby's bed is ready by the wood fireplace so we can build a fire if the baby is too cold or wet.  I think it will be a single birth, but that remains to be seen.  She's a first time goat mother and I'm praying all will go well.

Our little boy chocolate buckling born to Lexus and Romeo has been outside for 3 days and 2 nights...I miss him in the house.....Giving his little cry that he needs attention or milk..... Well, it's time for the afternoon chores.   Life keeps on going - no rest for the balance of the day!  But life is good and God is good and that's good enough for me!)

Thursday, March 10, 2011

March 10 - a day of ups and down!

A cool moist rain enveloped morning chores, making this a challenging morning for chores...But my heart beat with excitement as I approached the rabbits pens...Our White New Zealand mother, huge with child could not be found as she literally had white fur flying all around her.   She was desperate to build that nest...For five days now I've been bringing hay and she just put a thin layer in her nest box and it turned cold and she knew it was not enough. I ran to get her more hay and she was literally in the nest having babies, too a break turned around and grabbed that hay stacked by the nest.. Made the nest as she was having the babies and cleaning them up....Snow White Is just the epitome of a great mom...We think she had 12 babies ....Tomorrow I'll try to quickly count with my fingers, not my eyes!!!

Shana, our rescue bunny had I think 4 or 5....She's is so cute,,, it hit her all of the sudden that babies were due and she was a last minute builder but took about 1/2 her fur off!!!  

Isn't it just miraculous how God made the mother rabbits with built in messages on how to make a nest and that it's always just right for the weather...Those little bunnies are born with no fur.

I think we have 2 mini rex and 2 rex that will  give birth tomorro or the next day.. It has been a rough bunny season with all our changes in weather...I can almost forecast the weather by the depth of their nests and ho much fur was pulled.  Looks like a few cold days are coming up!!! So spoke the Mother Rabbits nest boxes.

Had 4 shots in my ankle to try to break the cycle of tarsal tunnel syndrome.  Let's hope it works...One managed to numb my leg and foot...Apparently I have foot arthritis...Ah the ravages of working and walking a lot, but I will not stop! Bionic feet are out there....I had one of the first surgeries for implants in my feet about 12 years ago for bunions and apparently I have no needed fluid between the bones especially in the surgery area...

Well enough of all that, I made huge chocolate chip cookies for Jacque, he needs the weight and now at almost 9:00 pm it's time to begin to rest!

Here's my favorite photo of me with 3 of our mini Lop's babies - Nea Nea, named after my good author friend Renea Winchester.

Keep your eyes open for everyday miracles and wonders.   God has placed them all around us! Have a blessed time and Remember the Past is History, Today is a Present and Tomorrow is a Promise...So live, love, hug, pray and praise today!


Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Joy in the Morning!!!!

Today a beautiful Chocolate purebred Lamancha baby boy was born!!! to the Garry Farm and to the mother named Lexus from Autumn Eidson's wonderful goat farm, Raven's Haven and to the father named Romeo (one of the boys from her farm!!!! Beautiful boy. Healthy A big praise and shout out to the Lord!!!

Thanks you Lord for this beautiful new boy!  Amen!

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Foster mothers located for Bluesie's babies & memories of Bluesie

Some of you know that yesterday was another heartbreaking day for Farmer Nancy...A tiny 2 1/2 pound Netherland Dwarf Doe, color was blue with beautiful eyes, left our farm for bunny heaveb... Her name was Bluesie and her charm was extensive.  She came to us in Spring 2010 as a farm to farm exchange farm from friends in Alabama.  They left with a treasured Blue Copper trio and several Black Copper and blue copper Marans babies and Nancy got to play with two white netherland girls, one black otter girl, one blue netherland girl and one chestnut boy otter and one white Netherland boy.  This was my First experience with the little ones.   I would often bring the babies into the living room to scamper over me while we began to wind down for the evening.   Bluesie never really ran far away. She preferred to tuck herself under my shoulder length hair and lean her head against my head and she was so content, nusling in to warm her tiny body by neck and in my hair.

Being farmers we know that we are caregivers of our animals only for a short while, as many are rehomed and some will also die too young for our wishes....   Bluesie had given the Farm 2 litters of beautiful, healthy babies. Yesterday, I was concerned as she seemed very slow and sluggish.   Her first set of babies was born Late Dec. 2010 and the second just 12 days ago... I lifted her and knew she was in trouble.  Her normal petite self was thinner than normal. 

As Jacque and I dashed to try to save her life, it soon became apparent to me that it was too late for live saving measures and I held her throughout the day and rocked her, petted her, told her how very much we loved her and we were so happy we had kept her lookalike daughter born in December.  Then, she died in my arms at 3:55 pm.   I had remained on watch all day and still her death struck me into a fury of tears. 

At exactly the time of her death, a prescheduled visitor to the farm named Beth was so super sweet and nice because I was so distracted, I could not focus on the animals I was trying to show her!  The farm with it's 500 animals last night seemed oddly empty.  There was no tiny Bluesie jumping off the top of her nest box to come and see me and there would not be again.   Her daughter at 3 months old was larger than her mother had ever been. Although very affectionate.  She had never traveled to my shoulder and nested in my hair and falled asleep there as content as any bunny has ever been.

I'm pleased to say that all of Bluesie's babies inside the nest of three other mothers, one is located with Nea Nea (our petit mini lop), another with Ola, the Black Otter, and two With Chinup or Chinchilla rabbit.   All mothers looked at me when I checked on the babies, like I didn't birth that baby, but all have accepted their foster children but I imagine they will be rather amazed to see the size of them when they jump out in the pen in a few days with their eyes opened!!!! We are grateful to the foster mothers and their willingness to help.

As this is the time for much bunny buying, I write this story only to say Love your Bunny, Take good care of her or him.  You may have them for 10 years, 1 year, I don't know, but what I do is that they will carve a place in your hard or perhaps your shoulder that nothing or no one else will ever hold.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

March has begun....

What's the expression --- in like a lion and out like a lamb....Yesterday we had high winds but no damage for which I was very very grateful...

So much is going on....About to set 3 dozen duck eggs for an Easter time hatch....  I'll probably set some now and then another bunch later.....I do  love our pekin ducks....So cute and active! Here are some duck photos!

Been another superbusy few days of sending eggs out in boxes to hatch all around the country!!!  It takes a really long time to wrap but it's all good...

Garden being tilled/weeded/Jacque is the main one, as a migraine has me hiding in the darkest part of the house...  I figure that I get migraines now because my brain waves are trying to find other unoccupied brain waves...

OOOOOhhhh...Big news 2 laying pumpkin hulsey hens have now joined the fun....Thank you Jonathan!  They are so happy that they laid an egg en route!!!!   Yes, I'm grabbing it for the incubator...For a small bird, it's a large egg!  The boys are soo pretty - very bright orange....but not all boys are that color!    They are from famous greenfire fams in Fla!  via JB in NC!

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Feb. 23

What a fun packed day yesterday....Over 150 eggs were wrapped and left the Garry Farm for destinations all over the United States - no international shipping!   We shipped the following eggs:

Brown Chinese Geese
Lavendar Orpington
Buff Orpington
Blue/Black and Splash Orpington
Pekin Duck
White Leghorn
Blue/Black Splash Marans
Rhode Island Reds
Wheaten marans
and Speckled Sussex.

I still have more to ship today...Spring is approaching and these eggs must be incubated!!!!  It takes 1 and 1/2 hours to package a box...Very labor intensive but soo worth the time....   I'm getting 80 to 100% hatches reported from our shipped eggs and that's due to the work of Jacque in feeding and care and my wrapping....It takes about $3 to $4 of bubble wrap alone!!! See me about hatching eggs...

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

So the first day of the blog for The Garry Farm

I really know nothing about blogging and probably will make many errors and wonder what I have started here. Simply to say today is a beautiful day at the Garry Farm.   I look around the Living Room and see NO room....Over 8 boxes of hatching eggs ready to go and finally got that last payment so to the Post Office today. A bit drizzly outside but sunshine in my heart and we'll just have a great day with that.   Have a wonderful day.  Until later.  Much love, prayers and smiles to all.  Farmer Nancy