Hurricane Farm

  (Scotland, Connecticut)
A view of life on our farm
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Winter Continues

It was "supposed to, maybe, probably, it could" snow all week here in Connecticut.  We had rain.  But...Friday came and so did the snow.  Finally!

The maple buckets are in the woods and there is a fresh layer of clean, peaceful snow on the ground.  Perfect conditions for woods-walking and maple sugarin'!

The ducks and geese love it.  They take this opportunity to escape from the mud and clean their feathers.

Even the hogs like the snow, since it gives them something new to dig in.  This one is almost ready for market.

This is Butch.  He seems to be the current ruler of the barnyard.  He doesn't mind the snow, and is the first one out of the barn despite weather conditions.

The Sugaring Hut...now fully piped, roofed, and ready to keep on sugarin'.  We'll be adding some tin roofing in the Spring time.  As it was, I was barely able to finish it to this stage before the sap started flowing!  It works great, though, and now we can sugar in all sorts of nasty weather.

Here is one of our "snow plows" hard at work.

Another shot of the new Sugarin' Hut.

Here's Liev heading out to "plow" the "bridges" that we've put out to get us across the small streams and into the woods.

With all the rain, the water in the woods is flowing quite rapidly!  In fact, some of the jugs that we set out on some the trees are now inaccesible.  The larger brook has swollen beyond its banks and we can't get to some of the maple trees to retrieve the sap.  Paco the Cat, however, does not seem bothered by this.

We use milk jugs to gather the sap once we run out of metal buckets and 5 gallon pails.  You can see a couple of the jugs on some trees that are now in the midst of the brook.  We'll have to wait to collect from those for a while...Or else brave the bitter cold water?  I think we'll wait...At least until my Dad comes down and is loking for a job to do!  Bring your waders, Dad!

Another tree now in the middle of the brook...

Finally, here is a cool tree bound by wild grape vines.  Pretty neat find out there at the edge of the woods.

 
 

Out in the Cold and Loving It

Here is one of our hogs.  She is especially fond of dumping over her freshly poured water.  It's a game with her, I suspect.  I don't like playing THAT game, so I gave her and her sisters a couple of soccer balls to toss around.  Apparently, the fun part of the water game is watching me clamor about trying to retrieve and refill the water so they can dump it over again.

 
 

Winter at the farm

People have been after us to start writing about our farm, so here goes....


As the cold season makes its presence known across Southern New England, here at our farm we embrace all the weather has to offer.  Our kids, Violet and Liev, have found a great sledding run in our pasture and have outlasted me out there several times already.  We've had several measurable snow events, and I for one am delighted to be plowing it all away in my "new" 1963 Farmall Cub.  What a great father's day gift.  And to top it off, my wife travelled up to VT to get the snow plow for me!  I have to put a new carburetor on the tractor, and I'll update this blog when that time comes.  (It will have to warm enough for me to feel my bare hands for that job.)

We've been fighting the dreaded "icing of the waterers" battle for some time, and found out that we have some faulty wiring in the barn.  We'll have to rent a small digging implement (sweet!) and run some new power lines out there this summer.  For now, we've been using the woodstove in the workshop, some well-placed heat bulbs, and a rotation of waterers to fight the ice battle.  Who knew how much water cattle take in each day!

Our progress on firewood this year is not as productive as last year as we're finding the new farm offers endless other chores, but we've still made a dent in the large pile of logs out in the front. 

On the other hand, our CSA membership is almost full and there is lots of book-keeping and calendar "figuring" to do to ensure all the meats are ready for each pickup date. 

We are currently debating between getting a silo to store delvered grain and picking it up ourselves.  The latter option requires that we construct some sort of smaller grain storage system...More on that as we decide what we will do.  There are several used silos available somewhat locally, but they still must be moved with semi-heavy machines.

 

 

 
 
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