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Here Come the Kids


Kidding season has started - although we're off to a rough start. I'm hoping it improves from here - logically the problems are much more likely early - early babies are often early for a reason (mother's poor health, a deficiency or disease) and after that, things usually improve.  

It's Spring!


Well, we did get a frost last night, another one expected tonight, and there's still the usual cold snap in May to get through - but my personal spring signal has popped up.  The asparagus is here!  We'e only had 3 edible spears emerge so far, but that means there's more on the way, and if you get down close to the ground, you can see dozens of baby stalks furring the bed, where they snuck through the mulch last fall and waited until now to pop up.

Soap, Soap, Soap!

I was sitting here thinking that I needed to write a blog - but about what?  There's so many topics, even just things we've done in the last week, but I don't want to get into a cycle of "this weekend we did this and this and this...)  I'd rather do a better job addressing single subjects at a time - and then I realized I haven't talked about soap in a while - there's been too many animal and other things going on (and still are!).  But I didn't want to neglect my soap!

We're Still Here

I apologize for the - what, 4 week?! - hiatus there!  For the first week, I wasn't doing a whole lot besides cleaning, carding, and spinning fleece and knitting a couple pairs of slippers someone ordered.  Then, the next few weeks were surprisingly busy with a variety of activities and I just never had a chance to write anything!  We've hosted 2 different groups, conducted a goat roundup, got our beef back and sold most of it, and gotten the sheep sheared!

End of an Era

As of yesterday, Solace Farm has entered a new era - not to be overly dramatic, but we took Fergus the bull to the butcher.  He was one of the set of 3 Scottish Highlands we initially bought when we moved here over 6 years ago, he's the only bull we've ever had, and has done a fantastic job.  We've only ever had one cow stay open for a breeding (and we blame that on her), he was gentle and calm, never a threat - just a nice guy all around!  We've gotten a lot of wonderful babies out of him over the years, and are sad to see him go.

Much-Needed Updating

It's been way too long, but I finally found some time to get on both my store here and my Etsy shop and get my items updated.  I added a few things - I didn't have my goat milk soap listed! - especially some yarns and knitting, and delisted a few things that I've either sold elsewhere or used myself :)  I still have a few more items to add - the rest of my soap, for instance - but it's definitely better.  Pop over if you get a chance and see what you think.

Animal Update

A few months ago, Caleb's work schedule changed - he now works 8 am to 7 pm Monday through Thursday, and gets Friday off.  This seems like a nice bonus weekend (or for us, work) day, and it often is, but more often it somehow gets eaten up by just one or two seemingly small jobs.  This weekend was a great example.  

Spinning and Planting

It's been a while, but I've finally found some time to do a little spinning.  Well, not so much found as just plain stole.  I haven't done dishes this week.  Or cleaned the kitchen.  Or swept.  Or washed the duck eggs.  But I did spin some yarn!  

Gains and Loss

This past week has, yet again, been one of joy and sadness.  I'll start with the sad - Monday morning we found our last cria of the year, Hank, dead in the pasture.  We are baffled as to the cause.  It was around 8* out, but alpacas are very cold-hardy animals, and he had his mama to snuggle with so I don't think it was the cold.  After I sheared him (in the living room, as I said it was 8* outside!) he didn't look excessively thin - pacas are always pretty lean creatures, and he was still nursing.

Moving On

It's been a busy few weeks since I last posted.  It hasn't really been anything noteworthy, just a lot of chores and projects taken care of, with the additional hands around.  Sadly, that has changed again - Dave and Nicole were unable to stay, as much as they wanted to, and have moved on as of Saturday.  We will miss them - they were a great addition to the farm, and we enjoyed their company as well as the help and energy they contributed to the farm.