Monday, March 7, 2011

five hours

Came home at 5:30. Parked truck outside driveway. Shoveled snow pile road plows built in driveway. Snow was heavy. Pull truck into driveway. Bring Gibson inside to eat his dinner in crate. Take out Jazz and Annie for a short walk. Bring in Jazz and Annie. Feed them dinner in front room. Go outside to feed sheep while still light out. Give half a bale of hay to flock. Separate it into four sections so everyone eats. No more big piles: leaves some out. Give a cup of grain to each sheep at its own station in the snow. Check all ewe's health and general condition. Scratch Sal. Set water bucket at artesian well spout. Stop to be grateful for artesian well on farm. Remind self to come back aftera short while and replace dirty water in heated pail. Go inside to check on chicks. Clean out brooder and replace with fresh shavings. Refill water and feed containers. No casualties for days. All Chicks look good. Vents clean. Eyes bright. Start fire in woodstove. Start a load of laundry. Check emails. See angry vegetarian on Facebook. Feel self-conscious he called me a pig. Let Gibson out of crate to play with big dogs. Check on oil in basement (half a tank) and realize water is all over. Panic. Post about it on blog. Call friends Shellee and Zach for advice. Zach asks if I have a wet/dry Shop-Vac? I do! I spend the next 45 minutes sucking out fifteen gallons of water and dumping it outside back of house, away from house. Feel like a home-owning superhero. Clean floor from basement-to outside trips from mud. Wash hands three times and still dirty. Sigh. Go outside to collect eggs and feed big chickens. Door of barn is frozen shut from ice storm. Pry open door enough to throw in grains for the barn-birds. Has to be good enough. Only one brown egg inside. My hens don't lay for ice storms. Smart. Come inside. Put clothes in dryer. Start to feel tired. Take out all three dogs again. Come inside to check email/delay 30-Day Shred DVD. Change into workout clothes and do level one in kitchen. Gibson lays on my stomach when I try to do crunches. He licks my face during push ups. He is the world's worst drill sergeant. Finish workout and back hurts. Wonder if pigs get back pains? Take ibuprofen and stretch. Change into PJs. Remember I forgot to fetch the sheep's water and look for warm socks. Take sheep fresh water and all dogs outside one more time. Dinner is yogurt and a peach. Drink a lot of water. Crash out on daybed with warm dogs. Put on mindless movie. Pray for June. Set alarm for 4:45.

It's not always like this.


Blogger Lynda Halliger Otvos (Lynda M O) said...

... I bet sometimes it’s even worse.

It has been for all of us; adulthood holds some nasty surprises. Stay the course; you’re doing well.

March 7, 2011 at 10:03 PM  
Blogger Erika said...

I'm glad you got the water figured out. We both have old slanty houses that with basements that fill with water! I had to put on boots and move stuff around down there earlier. Chris now has to push it all to where the sump pump is to get it outside.

March 7, 2011 at 10:33 PM  
Blogger E said...

Don't listen to people who call you names. I've been a vegetarian for decades and respect what you are doing immensely.

We need more strong, young, ambitious women who are living their convictions. Especially in the country!

March 7, 2011 at 10:51 PM  
Blogger Rachael said...

Those days are tough. I hope you get a really great night's sleep. And don't listen to angry vegetarian. We do what we can, and I think you are doing a great job. I just read your Chick Days (finished in less than 24 hours - even after spending whole day on alpaca farm) and loved it! We've had chickens for a year and a half now; so though the info was familiar, I just loved all the great pics and writing. So fun to follow others on their journeys. Keep doing what you're doing and ignore the naysayers.

March 7, 2011 at 11:01 PM  
Blogger Kimberly said...

hang in there!!!!

March 7, 2011 at 11:06 PM  
Blogger Dre said...

Pish Posh to angry vegetarian. I would find it a compliment, to be called by the name of something he must be adamantly defending?

March 7, 2011 at 11:17 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wow, I'm exhausted reading your post. Hang in there, and take angry vegetarian's words as a compliment. Remember we are what we eat, I'd rather be a pig than a mushroom who grows in, well, you know...

March 7, 2011 at 11:37 PM  
Blogger Leslie said...

I don't think I've ever posted on here but I've been reading for a while and really enjoy following your journey. I felt compelled to finally comment for two reasons:

1) I have a golden retriever who is as helpful as Gibson when it comes to working out, the moment she sees me on the floor she thinks I MUST be there for her entertainment, it's very difficult to do a push up while laughing because a dog is trying to squeeze under you, on her back, so you can rub her belly.

2) even though I don't "know" you and you can totally take care of yourself (as evidenced by this blog) I can't help but feel a bit protective and want to go yell at that person who called you names, what a douche! All I have to say is the following:

May the fleas of a thousand camels infest the crotch of the person who screws up your day, and may their arms be too short to scratch.

March 7, 2011 at 11:50 PM  
Blogger RabbleRoost said...

Leslie that was awesome. I can't help but wonder though... Are camel fleas especially potent? ;)

Also - you'd think a vegetarian would call someone compost-fodder as an insult or something, you know? Not something that (as others have mentioned) they defend. You know first hand how awesome pigs are, I wouldn't get too upset about it. Of course, it does always sting a bit when we get called some stupid name.
Sounds like you had a crazy couple of hours... Glad things are looking up, even though it's stressful at times. (Heck, sometimes it's stressful all the time!) Go Liset and Gibson! :)
And encouragement for all of the other animals, and you too especially. Need it in this weather. I'll be glad when winter is over, the constant battle through snow is wearing me out. Blah.

March 8, 2011 at 12:16 AM  
Blogger Paula said...

Yeah! What Leslie said!

Angry vegetarian is entitled to his opinion of course. But being spiteful or rude in the blogosphere is just cowardly.

At least you have the huevos to raise a pig yourself and hire a skilled butcher and be there when Pig met her humane end and then hung around after that to help your butcher and learn from her. That was gutsy. And very decent, I might add.

I would be will to be that Angry Vegetarian doesn't give a single thought to the hundreds of ground dwelling animals that get snuffed by the combines and automatic harvesters that bring him his dinner.

March 8, 2011 at 12:18 AM  
Blogger Janet said...

Most of the developing world simply doesn't have a secure food supply. It is a luxury of the westerm world to be able to afford to be a very loud and opinionated vegetarian, with access to all the various vegetable nutrients that their body requires - most of the world would love to have animal protein as a regular component of their diet. In the western world we can spurn it on supposedly moral grounds.
Go Jenna go - you are doing a great job!

March 8, 2011 at 12:49 AM  
Blogger Donna said...

Regarding the angry vegetarian...just blow him/her off they are probably just hungry or have too much gas. Plus like my daddy used to say opinions are like a$$holes, everybody's got 'em and some of them are more full of crap than others. Sorry if the naughty word offends anyone. Take care for this too shall pass ;)

March 8, 2011 at 1:32 AM  
Blogger Kate said...

I do always wonder how you manage to do so much. But what I love about you is how big your heart is. Keep it open, you have lots of cheerleaders rooting for you in so many ways!

March 8, 2011 at 2:16 AM  
Blogger daisy g said...

I don't Facebook, so I didn't read the cruel comment. All I can tell you is that when someone says something like that, it says more about them than about the person they're directing it toward. They've got issues to work out that have nothing to do with you, my dear Jenna. You're not in it...

I hope you got a great night's sleep!

March 8, 2011 at 6:23 AM  
Blogger Unknown said...

Jenna, you are an amazing gal and that is an understatement. All your creatures are so blessed to have you looking after them. Good job my friend.

March 8, 2011 at 7:04 AM  
Blogger Ohiofarmgirl said...

dont let the haters get you down, baby. you're doing a great job. onward and upwards!

glad that Gibson is doing well!

* laughs a imaginary scene were a horde of friends with pitchforks chase down angry vegetarian and demand an apology for our girl *

March 8, 2011 at 7:43 AM  
Blogger Gayle said...

I picture an angry vegetarian as a cross between Donald Duck and a cuccumber

March 8, 2011 at 9:15 AM  
Blogger Maria said...

Owning a home is hard work, especially when you're strapped for cash. You've got through your first winter, and I think we're all pretty damm proud of you without even knowing you.

As for the angry vegetarian - ignore him. You know why you do what you do more than most people out there - and live by your decisions.

March 8, 2011 at 9:17 AM  
Blogger Maggie in Tally said...

Mr. Angry Vegetarian should go...nevermind. Prolly cain't say that here in public space. My cats help me with my workouts when I do 'em---one 18-lb cat gets on my chest to add weight and one of the others swats at my hair as I sit up to encourage me to go faster. The remaining two just laugh at mommy.

March 8, 2011 at 9:32 AM  
Blogger Lauren said...

So busy! But can you really imagine your life any other way? A life without a barnyard? That would be so sad!

Also, angry vegetarian obviously does not have anything better to do. You are a writing, working, shepherding, shop-vac-ing superhero!

March 8, 2011 at 9:52 AM  
Blogger Jenn said...

Oh Jenna! How rude is that, it's always shocking how hurtful people can be...

Awesome job on the basement, you are a home owning super hero!!

March 8, 2011 at 9:57 AM  
Blogger Kristen said...

Whenever I think my life is difficult, I check out what you're up to. Reality check for me! Yikes!

Living the dream is rough sometimes!

March 8, 2011 at 11:04 AM  
Blogger Tara said...

Your comments about Gibson during workout time made me laugh! I can't keep my dogs off my yoga mat. They either view it as a great nap spot, or they must show me what a proper downward dog *should* look like, or they're DEEPLY concerned that I'm lying on the floor and must come see what the problem is. :)

March 8, 2011 at 12:25 PM  
Blogger bucolic beauty said...

All credibility goes out the window when name-calling is involved. If it makes you feel any better, my own father called me a redneck when he found out we were raising pigs for consumption.

March 8, 2011 at 12:39 PM  
Blogger Reason's Whore said...

Yeah it is. "It's always something. If it's not one thing, it's another."

March 8, 2011 at 6:22 PM  
Blogger kippy said...

Angry vegetarian probably is missing some nutrients in their diet/causing emotional issues. What they need is a big juicy medium rare steak a a slap upside the head. Your evening sounds exhausting--and that is after you did a full day at your job.

March 8, 2011 at 7:24 PM  
Blogger daveymac said...

sweetie, your are doing great Job, nad i rember calling my cousin a pig when i was a child, my mother told me i was complimenting my cousin "because PIG stood for Pretty Intellegent Girl" and never forget you are living the dream, he probably buys all his food from the supermarket with no concern what goes into it

March 8, 2011 at 11:02 PM  
Blogger The Deliberate Homeasteader said...

That angry vegetarian on FB was crazy ~ wanted to smack him. Not nice, I know. But he was just way over the top. I hope springtime comes soon for you. I'm in the south and still looking for it...

March 10, 2011 at 3:02 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

eh, look on the bright side: He'll probably turn into a woman from all the soy he eats. :-)

March 11, 2011 at 1:19 PM  

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