Winter is coming and we will be ready!!

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The summer has flown by at an unbelievable speed. It has already been five months since we moved into the house and it still feels like we haven’t quite gotten our feet underneath us. The to do list is always growing and life has a funny way of throwing up unexpected obstacles. None the less the journey has been a fantastic one so far and we are loving every minute of it.

The leaves are starting to change, the weather is getting cooler and we need to make sure we are prepared for another long winter. The goats and chickens need winterized homes and we need enough wood to see us through until the spring.

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I am planning on refurbishing the old chicken coop that came on the property. The male goats are sleeping there now so it will require a thorough cleaning. I will then insulate it and use tin to line the inner walls so the chickens can’t destroy it and nothing can get inside. I will have to run power out to the building for a water heater and some lights. I will also build a fenced in run that will allow them to go outside without having to be completely exposed to the elements. The more sunlight they can get in the winter the better for laying. I have visions of wicker baskets for nesting, lavender hanging to repel flies and maybe even some floral wall paper. But once again time will tell, I might have to save the extravagance for the permanent coop. I could spend hours on pinterest getting ideas!

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The next task will be to buy or build winter houses for the goats. The options are: two small insulated sheds built by us, two plastic calf or goat hutches or two stalls built in the garage. We will also need to divide the backyard into three sections. A Frisk section, a lady goat section and a boy goat section. The plan is to put up a temporary fence in the existing chain linked section of the backyard.

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Last weekend we spent all day Saturday getting wood in Calabogie at my grandmother’s house. We met Randy and Deanna at Neat to have breakfast before our big day. I highly recommend checking Neat out if you have not already. The food is incredible and the coffee is even better.

After enjoying breakfast wraps, banana muffins and warm beverages we finished the drive to the cottage. We saw a giant snapping turtle on the way up. It was crazy! It looked more like a dinosaur than a turtle. The big guy/girl? was almost across the road when someone sped by and ran over its tail. It didn’t seem to be a life threatening injury but it was still very frustrating. Turtles are beautiful creatures and easy to avoid on slow country roads.

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Toby, Randy and Greg worked the chainsaws while Deanna and I shuttled the wood into the trailer and eventually to the splitter. We spent about 7 hours gathering/splitting wood. Randy and Deanna took a load, we took a load and we left a load split for my grandma. This weekend we will split and stack our load. We are also planning on building a woodshed this weekend. I will make sure to take lots of pictures and post about it ASAP!

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Throughout the day we saw all sorts of creatures! We saw a stick bug, a toad, many tree frogs, a crazy caterpillar, a snapping turtle and two newts.

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All in all things are going great here at the farm. We are crazy busy and crazy happy! Listen for me Monday mornings on CKCU 93.1 at 7:40 am for updates! I’ll be starting school on September 8th and learning all sorts of useful skills for the farm life. Can’t wait to share!!!!

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