Sunday, July 25, 2010

A rainy soggy day

It's Sunday, and it's a day off!  I'm glad for the rain - we really needed it.  Some of the pastures were getting a bit crunchy.  I'm also glad because it is still misting off and on and it is an excuse to stay out of the gardens and flower beds.  There is a stack of books and magazines sitting on the coffee table by my sofa, and I am going to dig in today.

Making hard cheese includes a lot of downtime.  Leifschon is milking for me this morning, so I will bring the fresh milk into the house while it is still warm and get going on another batch of Cheddar.  There will be plenty of time to read between steps in the process.  This will be my third block of it.  I only hope that it tastes as good as it looks.  That three month cure time precludes knowing what I have wrought before making the next batch, but faint hearts never won fair ladies, nor fair gentlemen.  So here I go!

Tiny, the little chick that has spent some quality time in the house, is doing pretty well out in the barn.  She is there 24/7 now.  Each time I go out there, I fear what I will find.  She escaped her pen the other day, was on the outside, a sure recipe for death, but the big chicks had left her alone by some miracle.  I have no idea why.  None of her litter mates bother her either.  This is highly unusual.  The nature of the chicken is to pick on the small and helpless until they are dead.  She is only half the size of the smallest of her litter mates, and a third or a fourth of the largest.  She is pretty good at staying out of their way, and she is always first at the food trough.  I have made sure there is plenty of room at the trough so that she doesn't have to fight for space.  I sure hope she makes it.

The bull calf born to Lucy (we call him Luther) is leaving us today, I think.  A couple from Chesterton are supposed to be here around noon to pick him up.  If they don't show, another farmer is interested in him for breeding stock.  I am glad that he is finding a home.

It looks like Rosy will be freshening soon, and JP may just be with calf.  We thought she was empty and would have to be culled from the herd.  She has been a pet of mine, and I for one would not eat one bite of her.  On the other hand, she has always irritated Kathy, JP being part Normandy and pretty headstrong.  Kathy said that she will enjoy every bite!

Well, I'm heading to the sofa with a cup of coffee, and plan to start on that pile of books.  Hope you are having a satisfying and relaxing day as well.

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