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Been busy - the contract job is nuts. The lady....well, her employees don't give a flip, and most of what she has paid/is paying me to do is fixing their mistakes. And boy howdy, do they make mistakes! STUPID mistakes....and they don't key the stuff into the computer. They had marked 1 bank account as reconciled......I had to go back to *2014* and reconcile, as it had NOT been done. :sigh: And they hadn't input the transactions on 3 bank accounts.....since MAY. (And...that's what they are paid to do.) Oh, well - I don't mind. Money is money......:lol:

My son bought my Hanukkah present today - a Bissell Crosswave Pet Pro. Basically, it's an electric mop/carpet cleaner. Fancy! Works a treat - the carpet cleaner is...lacking, but it'll work as a once-a-month thing. The mop works FANTASTICALLY - and since we are completely vinyl, it was worth the cost. Especially since we had a 20% off coupon. I had borrowed Mom's carpet cleaner (which is what started my search!), so the rugs were clean - I wanted a smaller model for us so I could keep them that way. (With the dogs....well, the rugs were FILTHY. I cleaned them Friday; today we cleaned the 2 kitchen rugs. The water was dirty, but no where NEAR what it was on Friday.)

There's not a lot to talk about - the contract job has been more steady than I really wanted. NOT complaining, mind you - but I had planned on 1 day a week, not 3. Or 4. :sigh:

Hope y'all are doing well. Hopefully I'll get back here later this week!
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We didn't get to visit the breeder this weekend (more on that in a moment), but she sent me some lovely pictures yesterday. He's gotten Big!

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We're planning on going out this weekend, since all our necessary chores are done (as of today - right now, in fact.) See......last August, when we got our septic tank pumped, they informed me that the tank (fiberglass) was collapsing, and gave me anywhere from a few months to a year.

It lasted just at 1 year. Last month, the alarm went off - so we called. They sent out an inspector.....long story short, the tank has totally collapsed and needed replacing STAT. Gave me an estimate of 6 weeks......2 days later the planner came out, did a drawing, and gave me an estimate of, still, 6 weeks.

3 days later, he called and said they'd install the new CONCRETE tank, in *3* weeks. Or, today. :gulp:

So. I went into work mode. No one else did. :sigh: Last weekend, SG finally realized that Oh, S**t! Tank install is THIS THURSDAY oh dear! :sigh:

The back fence has been moved to behind my Studio (FINALLY! 2 years I've been waiting......) We put up a temporary side fence, and yesterday (yup. YESTERDAY. Why do I even....?) the old back fence was removed (well....most of it. There's still 16' that needs to come down....but at least MOST of it's down, right?)

This AM, SG removed the temporary side fence so that they could get the equipment in. I have 5 very upset dogs in the house right now - don't I understand that there are THINGS that need barking at? Outside? Now???? :lol:

We also got Himself's Studio and the "sweat shop" (what? It's better than "torture chamber", yes?)(home gym) painted, all the lights/fans installed, and measured for carpet. The carpet has been ordered and paid for, and the floor store ordered it Tuesday. Should be here in 2 weeks or so.....

Herself and I have "opened" an easy store. There's only 1 thing in it right now (Pokemon cards), but soon it'll be stocked with geeky jewelry and bags. I'll post a link once it's open - and then I will try not to mention it much again. I don't want this to devolve into an advertisement channel. :lol:

ETA: well....I am a klutz. While the guys were getting ready to remove the electrical box for the old system, they told me they needed to cut the power. I said OK, then realized that they didn’t know to also cut the solar box. I ran outside and got them safe, watched them remove the box, tie off the wires, and restart both boxes. I turned to walk back to the door, and found a hole Chloe had dug....and felt - and heard - something in my left ankle POP. Sigh. I have an orange-sized ankle now, turning a lovely shade of black - down from the softball-sized ankle of yesterday. Hurts......but I’ve survived worse. I e is my friend.......
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Sorry about last week - we had to skip the visit due to working on the new building...but this week! We spent a good hour with him yesterday. He's looking more and more like a *real* Wolfie now!

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I got PUPPY KISSES!!!!!!!! Lots of them - he's a snuggler!

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Sleepy baby....

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VERY sleepy - you can see how big he's gotten!

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He's got a nice profile.

SG wants to show........oi vey! I've never shown dogs....but horses. Horse shows I know. Political to the max. Expensive. The breeder says dog shows aren't very expensive, but they ARE political. Fun.......well, it may be. We'll see. SG wants to breed.......again, we'll see. *I* just want a Wolfie around the house. :lol:

Gotta skitter - rain is moving in, and I need to be in the Studio.
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Did a lot of running around this weekend. We needed to replace the TV in the family room (PSA: Stay AWAY from Vizio TV's. We've had to replace this one 2x in less than a year. :sigh: The mother board keeps going out.....) and the husband wanted to get a shotgun to help rid us of the cat problem. While we were out, he decided we needed to go to the Japanese Mall.....

We now are the proud owners of a hot water dispenser. Before you sneer and roll your eyes at me, let me explain: this thing is SO cool and useful! I had an electric kettle, but it only had 2 modes: boil, or off. This? This thing boils the water, then switches to "keep warm" mode.....it'll keep 4L of water at 194* for 6-8 hours.

We drink tea, here. This is useful - no more dirty pots to wash (sometimes multiple times/day, if we drink a lot of tea.) Himself has a bunch of Miso soup to eat......so, yeah. It was a bit of an indulgence, but.....it'll earn it's keep. I have to say, the Japanese take hot water VERY seriously - there were 9 models on display. :boggle: Each one had different features.......it took the husband 20 minutes to make a decision. I'm glad we decided to pass on a new rice cooker........:lol:

Yesterday I learned how to shoot a shotgun........um. I know that SOME people recommend a shotgun for home defense. *I* do not. I prefer my home to be as hole-less as possible.....and that won't happen with a shotgun. :shrug: Plus the kick.......yes, it has it's place. I WILL be using it to hunt the critter killing my chickens, but I much prefer a pistol. I don't get bruises from a pistol......

We also watched "The Greatest Showman" last night. It was...it was OK. The songs were catchy, but very modern - it didn't stop me from getting the soundtrack, but.....I've heard worse. It is family-friendly, and doesn't drag anywhere. And Hugh Jackman can sing. :lol:

My Harrison shirt dress is almost done......I'm on the fence about it. The line drawings make it look like a tent; the photo of Jenny has a belt (and looks great on her!); before sewing the side seams it looks like a tent. With the side-seams sewn, it looks more fitted on Kate, but.....the jury's out right now. I'll get it finished and wear it around before deciding if i want to make another one. This one just needs the button band, the placket, the collar stand, the collar, and the bias edging on the arm holes. Maybe today.....

The pattern is well-drafted, and the instructions are top-notch. I'll give a proper review after I've worn this one a bit.......

Gotta skitter!

Hey y'all!

May. 16th, 2018 08:24 am
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Guess what I got for Mother's Day? A new windshield for my Jeep! :lol: It was much needed - it was all cracked; last Monday I got hit with another rock that made it all the way thru. :sigh:

Himself made me a double batch of honey-free baklava. :mmmmmmmmm: I have a happy tummy now! :lol:

I have a Harrison Shirtdress laid out, ready to cut. I compared it's measurements with SOI's Vintage Shirtdress....and went with a 12 E/F. :gulp!: I added 2" to the length (I don't like knee-length dresses, I like them almost tea length. Yes, the pattern is drafted for 5'6"; I am 5'4". On a good day. However, the pattern looked like it ended right AT my knee......we'll see.), but the rest is going to be made as drafted. I'm hoping to be able to cut it out today, and maybe start sewing it up. We'll see - since it's already in the 90's here, I need all the lightweight, floaty dresses I can get my hands on. :sigh: It's looking to be a HOT Summer!

Speaking of.....we're making some changes around the homestead. After a LOT of talk, we've decided to ditch the pool. Yes, really. We only use it 3 months out of the year, and only - maybe - 5 days/week at that. The deck that the husband wants will cost us $10K.......and Himself has requested his own space to do his own thing in. (Why not? The other 3 of us each have space - Herself has the Garage Studio, I have my Studio, and the husband his shop. Himself is getting into modding Nerf blasters, and needs space to do so.)

So. We have negotiated a deal - I give up my pool, but I get a 14' x 32' building. With a hot tub annex added to one end. Himself gets half for his space; the other half will be a "workout" room, with access to the hot tub.

Being realistic, I know that the husband will use the workout space for.....a month. Maybe. Himself and I will use it long-term; I can't do any of my workout vids in the house because dogs. :rofl: And the hot tub will - WILL - be used by me year-round. I like taking hot baths - this will save money and time. The building will be where the pool is now, so right outside Herself's Studio doors. We can dry off in the "gym" before heading inside.

We're looking on CL for equipment; I want something that can do multiple exercises, to save space (and money!) The Total Gym is near the top of the list - we'll see what happens. (For the record - in the past year I've lost 3.5" in my waist and about 4" around my hips. I still have a ways to go, but at least I am moving in the right direction. The husband....not so much. He can't seem to understand the relationship between eating all the time and weight gain. :sigh:)

Anyway. That's what's going on here. Hope all is well with y'all!
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So. We have another bobcat. :sigh: I think we are dealing with a family - the first one vanished for 5 weeks, we lost a hen, then a week later we lost a guinea. I've left 4 "packages", now - the latest yesterday (the guinea was gotten sometime Saturday late morning/early afternoon.) The packages are being consumed by *something*......so I'm pretty sure this isn't the same critter. :deep sigh:

Been busy in the Studio. A while back I had the bright idea of using a doctor-style bag to hold the critter medications. I found a pattern - Swoop's Nora Doctor's bag - but had to let it simmer while I decided on fabric. This week I made up the chicken bag - I used the fabric from the breakfast area. It's GORGEOUS, if I do say so myself. :lol: Pictures will be forthcoming - I've already started the bag for the goat and horse meds. then I have to knock out a gift bag, THEN I can start on my Harrison shirt dress (finally!). The SOI Nancy is still in time out.....:rofl:

Oh! We have acquired 2 new does. Saturday the hubs and I ran to Home Depot for concrete (We need to put up a fence around the garden...Suki is a DIGGER. :sigh:) We saw a guy in the parking lot that looked familiar....so the hubs called out "G!" And yea, it was him. His wife was in the store - these are our goat mentors - we bought our starter herd from them.

They had lost 10 does to a dog attack a few months ago, then their bucks died...they were down to 2 does. Hubs immediately told them that IF they ever wanted to sell them, we'd buy them. They looked at each other, then G said "You can HAVE them. They'll have a good home with you!"

Anyway, they brought them out to us yesterday afternoon. They are nice, well-bred Nubians, and very, very scared. Our dogs (of course!) freak them right out - but the dogs can't get to them, and the fences are separated by about 50 feet. They'll settle in.

And we have somehow acquired a new rooster. He appeared down the street about a week ago....Wednesday AM he was hanging out in the pasture behind our coop. (We sorta wanted him to become the next victim - save OUR hens, y'know? Bad, yes....but......he's not ours, y'know?) Anyway, by Saturday he'd decided to move into our goat barn. So, it seems we have a new roo. Fun times!

I need to do a photo post soon - I want to finish the next bag first. That's today's project - I have most of the pieces cut out, just need to cut the foam, stabilizer and interfacing, then sew it up. The first bag took about 4 hours to sew it up - this one should go faster. I hope. :lol:
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but I'm getting better! My throat doesn't hurt, and my ears are better. Probably because I'm taking SG's z-pack; he got it then decided he didn't need it. :sigh:

Baby chicks are doing well! (or were, when I fed them tonight). Checklit is a bit peeved with the service here, but he/she'll get over it.

Last week, SG's phone went wonky. Said No Service, and when it found service, it'd drop it randomly. He did all sorts of things to fix it; ended up he went to Apple Saturday and came home with a brand-spanking new iPhone 6S+. :sigh: Yes, company had paid for his old one....but you know, he COULD have "downgraded" to the older model. :shakes head:

Anyway. He also came home with the old, broken internal antenna phone. Apple didn't want it. He tossed it in a drawer to be "recycled" (when he finally gets around to recycling all our old electronics).......I had a Thought.

"So. Can I use the phone as an iPod?"

"Huh. Yeah, don't see why not - it's got 64g. Plenty of room for all your music. Wanna try it?"

Um....yeah. :lol:

We had to install the SIM card long enough to reset it, but now I have a handy-dandy iPod. I still have my old iPhone 4 (see "time", above); we're going to reset it and let Herself have it for a new iPod - she's still using my 3rd-gen original iPod. :blink:

I mean, why NOT? They don't need the newest iOS, and we don't need them as phones. Mine has a crack in the screen - not bad enough to prevent using it as an iPod (but apps were hard to use with it); SG's has a broken internal antenna - but you don't NEED the antenna to play music! It's a good use of resources, if you ask me.

Oh! Early Tuesday AM Chloe met a skunk....and pissed it off. At 1 AM, she decided to come into the bedroom to let us know how rude the skunk was - I could smell her thru my nose. :UGH:

She got a bath. IF you should find yourself in the same situation, here's a recipe that WILL remove the stink:

1 cup Arm & Hammer Washing Soda
4 cups Apple Cider Vinegar
1/4 cup Dawn dish soap (the original blue version)

Mix it all up, put on rubber gloves, and take the offending dog outside. Soak them with the water hose (if possible!), then work the mix into the coat. Let sit for a few minutes (I did it less than 5, because she was bouncing around to get away from me), then rinse, rinse, rinse.

She's clean and soft and NON-stinky now. I have warned her to NOT do this again.......but I am not taking any bets. She's called the "goofy Newfy" for a reason........:sigh: and :lol:
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since I last posted. We lost 2 baby goats and almost lost 3 more - and it's my fault. :sigh: and :sob:

There's a parasite that affects goats, cows, and chickens (maybe more, but those are the ones I am aware of). You treat the babies beginning at 15 days old (if using Corid), for 5 days, then do it again 1x/month until they are well grown. Adults are immune to the effects.

Anyway. I have a notebook that I ALWAYS pull out and read before kidding/right after. This year, my notebook had gotten packed up and I figured, no big deal - I've done this before! How wrong I was..

I was able to save the 3, thankfully. I also realized WHY I didn't have any Corid on hand.....a few years ago there was an experiment with a new class of drug - it's a 1 and Done dosage. I tried it, it worked brilliantly, and we switched. Only, again - I keep that drug in the kitchen, on the counter (along with the Wazine we use to worm the chickens). On the counter, I see it All The Time, and it helps me remember what it is, and why I have it. The Baytril bottle was almost empty - I planned to reorder it, but the leak happened, and the bottle was packed up and forgotten. :sigh:

I will use Corid on this batch of kids - I have both the powder and the pre-mixed bottle, now - and I will order more Baytril next month. Just to have it on hand. I am also going to draft up a checklist for the milk room - actually, 3. 1 for the breeding pen, 1 for kid-to-breeding, and 1 for dry goats. Maybe this way I won't forget stuff.

We've also lost a LOT of the chicks this year to...something. I think it's a feral cat - it's coming in the pen under the fence, and it's getting into the coop and attacking the young birds that haven't quite figured out how to roost. Herself and I are tired of cleaning up the remains, so we are going to war tonight. Cages, with death administered when we catch the culprit. It's cost us 25 of the 30 chicks we had earlier this year.......and injured 3. 2 of which are hanging in there, in her Studio. :big sigh:

Such is life on a farm - it's not for sissies!

Oh! In other news, I'm getting into making salves and creams. I've ordered a few herbal books; why is it that some people need to go all woo-woo when discussing herbs? I mean.......really. I just want to know what herb does what, not "the great goddess embodied this herb with mystical powers...." Really? I mean.....Really? Just tell me that comfrey helps bones to knit, and leave it at that - or tell me that comfrey has such-and-such enzymes in it that aids bones. That's all I want! :sigh: (At least I'm getting some laughs out of this.......I mean, "lunar tea"? Lunar rays are similar to solar rays????? REALLY??????? The Moon just reflects the Sun's light.......so.....um........yeah. :giggle:)(And I don't mean this to be insulting. If YOU believe this, then....good! I just find it a bit over-the-top silly, myself, but if it works, it works.)

I think....

Jul. 6th, 2017 02:55 pm
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that we have single-handedly reversed N. Texas' drought. :lol: It has rained So Much since we went solar.....:rofl:

A few things I've been asked about:

1. No, we can't tell any difference between solar and grid power. It switches seamlessly.

2. So far, we've been producing more than we're using - which is what you want (well, actually, the power company says we want to "break even".......I'm more than happy to produce more than we need.) You want to NOT pay for your electric, right? Right.

3. SG went a little overboard - he requested MORE panels than the installer recommended (see #2, above). I'm kinda glad - it was overcast yesterday (when the meter finally got changed), and we were STILL pulling in 20 watts......the co-op employee was impressed. So was I!

Quick lesson:

When you decide you want to go solar, there's a LOT to do. First, find a company. There's a LOT out there - get quotes. LOTS of quotes. Ours ranged from $20K - $65K, with most being in the top tier. Don't go for Names - the highest quote was from Treehouse, who uses Tesla inverters. We have Solar Edge - they work the same, as do the panels.

Expect this to take TIME. Our co-op is shocked at how fast we went from "how do we...." calls from our installer to done; he said it normally takes at least a month. We? Took 1.5 WEEKS. :blink:

Make sure you have South-facing roof. We have panels on 2 sides - the South and East. South is the ideal - any face will work, but it's better on the South.

The panels are on the roof, or you can have a....stand made for them. Or put them on a carport. If I have roof issues, the panels will have to come down.......that's gonna cost. Fortunately we have a new roof....still. Something to think about.

You will have a largish box on your house, near the master panel. MOST people have the panel in the garage, so it's not a major issue. Our panel is on the OUTside, off of Herself's bedroom. :sigh: SG didn't want an ugly box hanging off the brick (the inverter HAS to be protected from the weather), so he had them put it in the linen closet in the hall off of Herself's room. Upshot - it's "pretty", but I lost 3 shelves of storage. I'll live...but it's something to think about.

Anyway, it's raining again. You're welcome! :snicker:

In other news....

SIL has gone back home. FIL is OK, but.....well, he's really showing his age. He ended up at the ER last Sunday, but came straight home. We went over for Brexit 1776 Day.....he was on O2 the whole time. And looked and acted weak. We're concerned, but there's not a lot we can do. :sigh:

SIL and Herself and I ran to an Antique Mall after we stuffed ourselves. Herself got a vest for a Bonnie cosplay; SIL got a few things. On our way back to the house, SIL got.......not lost, no........disoriented. Yeah. That. :snicker: Anyway, we discovered a yarn store - that was OPEN. :whee!: I came home with 2 new skeins.....and a new place to shop. :lol:

Yesterday we vegged. Sunday, SG wanted the PODS emptied......then went to bed. The kids and I got our stuff out, but didn't know what to do with his stuff. He didn't either. :snicker: Yesterday, the 3 of us started getting Herself's Studio squared away - we are each dealing with 2 boxes/day. Slow, yes, but it's getting done. I spent a few hours yesterday getting my Studio in shape....have a way to go, but it has to get done.....there's a lot of stuff in Herself's Studio that is actually mine. :sigh: I've gone thru a LOT of trash bags in the past 2 days........
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:lol: let's see - they were supposed to come out Friday AM (at 6:30!) to begin, but didn't. Seems that their supplier wasn't going to ship our panels until Friday, to arrive MONDAY. Today. :gulp: The owner said, NO - we install Saturday! Get the stuff HERE. And they did. :rofl:

So. Saturday AM (6:55) they began. And were stopped by rain. They started again...and again, were stopped by rain. They stayed until almost 9 PM, then showed up at 7 AM yesterday.

They finished right around 2:30-ish. We were running strictly on the panels until the sun went down - we opted to NOT do batteries, so we're still tied to the grid. :shrug: We're on the panels right now........:whee!:

The pool is also finally - FINALLY! - open. Good thing, too - we worked on emptying the 2nd pod. SG got a little pissy - he wanted to start early. I said, fine - tell me when! - so he went and took a nap. :bangs head: The kids and I went on out and started; got all of *our* stuff out, but had to stop when we reached the stuff he had put in there from his plant.

He claimed that NONE of the stuff in there was his.....until I pointed at the boxes and boxes and BOXES of stuff branded Plant Name. :snicker: He quit, and decided we needed to have a portable building built....I have nixed that. I do NOT want to spend the $$$$ for a building to store junk in - I'd rather deal with the junk NOW. :sigh:

Herself's Studio is full to the brim. MY plan is for the kids and I to empty 2 boxes each per day until it's done. We either find a home for the stuff, or it gets tossed. The only problem is my stuff - my Studio is FULL. So.....I'll do my 2 boxes, then go work on my Studio to get space made. Or I'll just toss a bunch of stuff. I haven't needed it since November, so......:shrug:

SG's stuff will be tossed in his shop for now - HE can deal with it. Or not. :Shrug:

Anyway. The power co-op is supposed to come out today or Wednesday to put in a new meter - we are supposed to be able to see what we're "giving" the co-op. I just want to either break even or run up a bunch of credits. I'd like to get rid of the power bill, thanks. :lol:

Today is grocery day, so I gotta get hopping! Tomorrow we'll be at the FIL's.......then we're home for the rest of the week. :whew: I prefer to be a home-body.....
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Um, yeah - so this happened.

We've been looking into solar power for, well, years - I had checked into it in 2003 when the house was being built, but it was priced way out of my league. We've looked over the years- the latest was last month; Treehouse quoted $60K. :gulp!:

On my trip to pick up Herself's birthday cake, we saw a billboard for a "local" solar company. SG called, they came out Tuesday....and we got the quote Thursday. $20K. They came out yesterday and we signed the contract......they'll do the install Friday and Saturday.

37 panels, 1700KwH. Own, not leased. Tied into the grid (WAY too much to go completely off-grid!); our co-op doesn't pay for power, but they credit us for the overage (so....they DO pay, but not cash. Whatever....if I never have to pay another electric bill I'll be happy as a clam!)

They also do wind.....we're discussing it for my Studio, SG's shop, and the soon-to-be-NEW goat barn. Might just do solar there, too - we're still in the discussion stage. We will go solar, at least, on those down the road.

I'm pretty stoked. Since our electric bills top $400/month in Summer....and the payments on the solar system is $350/month for 37 months........AND SG will be paying it off sooner......we're coming out ahead. If I did the math right, the system will pay for itself in less than 5 years. :happy:

Making Manchego today. Fun stuff!
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apparently not. There's a store here, called Beall's (Ball's. Whatever.) I had seen the ad, but figured we wouldn't do anything; this weekend (for Father's Day) they had a HUGE sale. Mens and Boys were buy 1, get 2 free, and everything else was 50% off - including Clearance. Normally, we don't do sales...but our next door neighbor mentioned it to SG, so off we went.

And we spent.

Both he and Himself made out like bandits - Polo and Ralph Lauren and Izod shirts, at 3 for $50. Swim trunks - Polo! - for $25....only somehow we got Himself's free. Herself and I got a ton of blouses and shorts. We basically got new wardrobes - for a lot less than I anticipated. (We basically saved over 70%, if my math is right. The sales clerk couldn't believe the size of the receipt, or the number of coupons we got on Sunday!)

And we hit another one the next day....and he bought MORE. And.....they have a thing that when you have a Beall's card, you get so much cash back, AND $10 off purchases of $10/more coupons...and I currently have over $100 in coupons to use. :blink: (He opened an account, charged the stuff, then turned around and paid it off. It's still open, but *I* am not on it (didn't want to be!), and he won't use it. So....we get the perks but don't have to pay the interest.)

Herself and I hit yet another one yesterday and used some of the coupons...we got about $200 worth of stuff for - wait for it! - $40. I ended up with 1 shirt; she walked out with a hat, 4 blouses, a jacket, and some more shorts. It's.....insane. I don't know how they stay in business!

We're going back Thursday - I have some "50% off all clearance" coupons I need to use, plus some more $10 off $10+. Both she and Himself can use a few more clothes.......:lol: These are a LOT nicer than what Wally-world carries, and with the coupons the prices are pretty comparable. Especially if we hit the clearance racks again!

The 3 batches of Whey Cool soaps look good. I made a test batch of GM soap (new scent - Cherry Blossom!) today - so far it's looking good. I think this one will be called "Sakura Goat", unless Herself objects. She's my Japan "expert"; I don't want to offend anyone with my silly names. I also made her a jar of body butter in Cherry Blossom - she LOVES it. :heh: I think I have a new hobby. Maybe. :snicker:

My SIL made it in from KY. We'll be going over to FIL's a lot, I think, to help her get him straightened out. I hope she can get him to go back up with her to visit - he NEEDS it.
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Got up yesterday AM, went out to milk, and SG came out all torn up. Kenzie died sometime Friday evening/early Sat. morning. :sigh: No sign of distress; she was normal when we went to bed. :sigh:

Needless to say, it's pretty grim here right now.

I busied myself with soaping - 3 batches of Whey Cool. Sea Dog, Hippie Dippy, and an as-yet-unnamed batch scented with Plumeria. I prefer to experiment with Whey Cool instead of the Goat's Milk, because whey is a "waste" product and it doesn't bother me if the experiment doesn't work. :grin: This one did, but the scent accelerates - I had soap on a stick! We'll see what it looks like when I cut it later today.....

Happy Father's Day to all the Dads out there!
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So today I tried my hand at making cold cream and whipped Shea body butter. It was surprisingly FUN and easy!

I'm going to share a not-very-good photo. :lol: Sorry -but I didn't feel like dragging them out of the bathroom cabinet just for a quick photo-shoot. :snicker:

2017 cream and body butter

The yellow is the cold cream. Due to my allergy to all things bee, I swapped candlelilla wax for the beeswax. (I've not reacted to beeswax - yet - and I'd like to keep it that way!) The candlelilla wax is a vegetable wax, and it's shockingly Yellow. Ah, well - it shouldn't stain my skin; it didn't stain my arm when I tested it. I haven't actually USED it yet - that'll happen tonight - but I think this may be a keeper. We'll see.

The whipped shea butter....oh, man! It's WONDERFUL! I took a quick shower after milking this afternoon, and slathered on about 2 Tablespoons of the butter. Wow - my skin is SUPER soft! I think I put in a wee bit too much scent - I prefer a very LIGHT scent, and this is heavy, to me - but that's OK. We'll see how it holds up.

I don't think this will be added to the "shop".....I'm not sure how it'll ship. However....it's going in the gift box. I know a LOT of people that'll LOVE this! And gifts don't have the worry for me that purchased items do....so....well. We'll see.

My milking machine arrived yesterday, but we need to do a few modifications before I can use it. Like running an extension cord to the barn, and getting a pressure meter for the pump - things like that. We did try it out last night on 2 buckets of water (what? I needed to *clean* it, right? Right!) and it worked a treat, so I am looking forward to this. The bucket is HUGE, though.......but that's OK. If I need to add more does to the milk line in the future, the bucket will handle them. (You never know what the future holds; I am the only dairy-er in my area. :shrug: I would prefer to NOT add more goats, but hey - I can if I need to.) (I can't keep from rubbing my soft, soft skin right now. :snicker: I think this could become a new hobby......oh, dear.)
fiberaddict: (Default)
It's always *something*, isn't it? :sigh:

Had a huge fight with the husband Wednesday evening, so I've been subjected to the silent treatment. Whatever - it needed to be said. My house is still NOT complete.....and he's been on his Mac playing online poker and watching YouTubes. :sigh:

The upshot is - "he'll show ME"....my kitchen counters are getting done, the bathroom has been worked on...and the hole near the range hood has FINALLY been patched. BUT - only because Himself went and installed the smoke detectors and bathroom light, then came into the kitchen and installed my curtain rods. :men!:

Ah, well - such is life. Baby goats are growing, as are the chicks. Not much else to report.....
fiberaddict: (Default)
And a good one it is turning out to be, too! Yesterday Himself helped me clean out the dining room - we can hold Shabbat dinner in there, now! :huzzah!:

This AM, I got up to a text from my contractor - she's sick, so I didn't need to rush to get the work done. So I did 3 loads of laundry, set up the ironing board, and got ALL my table linens washed, bleached, and ironed. :whew: (I'm halfway done with the work, anyway, so I'll get it done early next week.)

Then we went out and disbudded Poe and Finn...only SG was a little too enthusiastic with Poe. He bled all over me. :sigh: Went to lunch, then I went down for a short nap. (Didn't work - hard to sleep with a snoring dog next to you. :sigh:)

Went out to check Poe, and noticed Rain had goop. Walked a little closer - baby on the ground! Ran to the house to grab my kit, then ran back to the barn to find another baby in the barn. Grabbed it - girl!! - ran outside and grabbed the other - boy!!!! :happy dance:

Rain was hard to get into the milk room, but once there she was *sorta* easy to milk. I got 1.5 bottles of colostrum out of her; she's outside right now eating grass while we wait for her to slip the afterbirth. The twins are in the bathroom - they are *beautiful*!

Now we wait on Sugar to pop....any bets? :lol:

Current count:

Boys: 6

Girls: 4 surviving

I now have *7* does in milk. :whew: Got notice that the new milking set-up is due to ship "soon"....hope soon means SOON. :rofl:

May your Shabbat be Blessed!

I changed the counts - Sugar dropped! Rain actually had boy/girl twins (my bad); Sugar had 2 girls! We are done kidding for the year!!!!
fiberaddict: (Default)
I got a buckling from Trillion! :lol: AND a doeling from April and a buckling from Inara (granted, those 2 were Friday evening, but hey - I'll take it!) Only 2 does to go.....

Yes, Friday evening was...eventful. I had just hung up the phone from my FIL when I looked outside and saw April in a weird, hunched position. Ran outside....got to her just in time to keep the little girl from hitting the (very dirty) ground. Got Lyra cleaned up, mom sorted, and was gathering up my kit to head back to the house when Inara started yelling at me. (Inara is the typical Nubian - very, very mouthy. Yells about *everything*.)

I went to pet her - that's usually what she wants - and saw goop. :sigh: Drug her outside; 30 minutes later she delivered a very large bucking in my lap. (She crawled into my lap and refused to move. Whatever....weird goat! :lol:)

SG is FINALLY seriously looking to replace the machine for me. See, he has to come hold April - she's a first freshener, she has TEENY teats (she and May are charter members of the "itty-bitty-t***y-club. Seriously - their udders are between grapefruit and cantaloupe size, with teats the size of my pinkie finger's first joint. Say - half an inch?.. TINY. Hard to milk.) April fights, so someone has to wrestle her to a stand-still so I can attempt to milk her out. He threw out his back yesterday....this AM was NOT fun for him.

Or me, because my wrist can NOT take this. Out of the 5 does I am currently milking, we got almost a half-gallon of drinkable milk (Zoe) and *13* bottles from the other 4. 13 9-oz, FULL bottles. Multiply that by 2x/day.......yeah, I think we need a machine STAT.

:sigh:

Anyway. Yesterday was clean the milk room day - it needed it. It's currently empty; everything is outside waiting to be washed down. The old machine......honestly, I really just want a new bucket, one that's smaller than the Surge one. It's too big and heavy for me. We need to replace the inflations and lines (you do that every year).....so SG tried to start the pump. It's a no-go, and he's not sure it's worth getting it fixed. He can buy a new pump for under $200...this one is an old medical-grade liposuction pump. I don't care, as long as we do something SOON.

But! Current goat count:

Boys: 5

Girls: 1

They all appear healthy, so that's good.

Have a great day - I need to check on the 2 holdouts. Maybe I'll get more babies today! :panic: :rofl:

Sad day...

May. 12th, 2017 04:07 pm
fiberaddict: (Default)
we lost Jen...so the count is currently:

Boys: 3

Girls: 0

I was worried about this from the beginning......she was very, very tiny (under 2 pounds. "Normal" weight is between 5 - 9 pounds; Bodie is about 5, I think) and very, very weak. Her suck reflex was almost nonexistent, and she couldn't regulate her body temperature. I had her on a heated rice pack, with a sweater, wrapped in a towel, so at least I know she was warm. :sigh:

I KNOW it's part of life, and I know there are a lot of people who'll raise their eyebrows at me, but....how could I NOT try to save her? I can't be callous - she was alive, and I did my best to keep her that way. I'll do it again if necessary.

In other news....went to the Vet today for Sam. He needs dental work badly; he goes back on Monday for grooming and he'll stay overnight for surgery early Tuesday morning. He has 2 abscessed teeth; 1 is loose the other is not. Fun times....at least the doc sent vaccinations home with us so *I* could do the other 6 - there's NO WAY I can get all 6 dogs in for him to do it. He said he'd schedule a farm call for us so he could do the rabies shot - I'm not a Vet, so I can't legally do that one. :shrug: Then Kenzie needs to go in - she may have........crud, can't remember what he said. Besides diabetes - it was something else, like Chrones. I think......anyway, she needs looking at.

It's always something, isn't it?
fiberaddict: (Default)
Boys: 3

Girls: 1


Went out to milk Zoe at 6:30, like normal. I walked behind my Studio, as normal, to check on the goats, and noticed May was down in an "odd" position. (I can't describe it, but it's fully recognizable when you SEE it.) I did a quick look - no babies apparent, so I made the quick decision to milk Zoe before checking on her.

Got Zoe sorted, and went into the pen. May had turned around, and had *2* heads out. :panic!: I shot up a quick prayer, yelled for SG (who was still asleep and DID. NOT. HEAR. ME), then took a deep breath. I grabbed the head that was the furtherest out and gave it a gentle tug - out slid a good-sized, apparently dead baby. I dropped him on the ground - he started breathing! - and turned my attention to the other head.

I was missing feet. I remembered what the vet had told me years ago - don't worry about presentation in a case like this, just do your best to get 'em out quickly - so I grabbed baby behind the jaw and worked my fingers in to try and get a little more space. Very quickly, SHE slid out and started breathing. :whew!:

I was wearing a hoodie (I ALWAYS wear a jacket/sweatshirt/hoodie during kidding season), so I took it off and wrapped both kids in it. I got them outside and plopped both on the grass, then went back to quickly check on May - she was fine. Off the kids and I went to the house, yelling for SG all the way.

Long story short - all 3 are doing OK. Bodie (the boy) is already standing; Jen (the girl) is weaker, but fighting. Both have taken 4 oz or so of colostrum. May is sore, but seems OK. She's not bleeding, so I think she's OK - it's just both kids wanted OUT right then. I did give her some antibiotic, just to be on the safe side, and I'll give her another dose tonight.

Both look like mama - brown and white. Bodie is HUGE compared to Jen, but both are on the smaller side of Nubian newborns.

Poe and Finn have been evicted to the goat barn; Bodie is in the playpen while Jen is in a garden trug, all wrapped up in towels with a hot rice pack helping her stay warm.

May looks to be a good milker - she's not fighting me at all. This is her first freshening, which means small teats......SG PROMISED me he'd order me a new milking machine. The old one.....the pump needs work. Yes, it'd be cheaper to try to fix it - maybe - but we can't run the bucket thru the dishwasher as it's a cow bucket and too big. I'm looking at specific goat milkers....we'll see. Either way, I'm going to need a machine soonish - I still have *5* does (I think) to go. :deep breath: God is good - we'll get it sorted soon enough.

So. How was YOUR morning? :lol:
fiberaddict: (Default)
Sorry for the silence, it's just been really busy around here. I had some contract work, I have 6 (!) does due any moment (I think it's 6 - judging by the udder formation and size of belly, it's 6. There's 2 more that I'm not sure about....if you consider that goats usually twin, and I have 6 due......:ulp:).....plus the 2 boys in the bathroom....yeah, busy.

Poe and Finn :lol: are doing great! I need to get photos...I keep forgetting my phone when we take them outside to play. :sigh: Zoe is doing well; it looks like we're currently getting 2 liters from her right now. Give or take......

I have another shirtdress cut out (cotton lawn! It's so light and airy!), but haven't found the time to actually sew it up yet. Maybe Sunday...that's the plan, anyway.

Oh! I got a response from John Deere (I sent an email)....basically they're sorry we have a bum dealer, and if there's anything they can do for us, let them know. :sigh: Yeah....come pick up the stupid mower and hand us the cash, please - we're going Orange now! :bangs head: I guess Customer Satisfaction isn't a big deal any more. :sad:

Well, it's time to check the does again - later!

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