Annie and Belle

Willie the orphan lamb

April 22, 2012

Willie the orphan lamb

I’ve been a farm wife for more than 20 years. Not once has a farm animal made its way into the house.  That is, until a couple of weeks ago when a ewe (female sheep) died after giving birth. What to do but start bottle feeding her lamb? Since the little male, who came to be known as Willie, needed to eat about every four hours, he came inside.

My farmer-in-law brought out a baby bottle and diapers from the grocery store and we were set. Since Willie had only sucked on his mother for a short time — and because he was hungry — he quickly took to the bottle. We started him on canned goat milk until we were able to buy powdered milk replacer for sheep.

He was just so darn cute — always eager to eat, snuggle and play. The kids took turns falling asleep with him each night. I would gather him up before I went to bed, so he could have his last bottle of the day and then settled him in to his blanket in our mud room. I didn’t even mind those 2 a.m. feedings.

But, lambs grow up and need to be sheep. So, today Willie is back outside in his pen. We brought home a three-week-old Alpine dairy goat buck yesterday, so he has a pen mate. We just finished feeding both for the night. When we left, they were busy practicing butting heads. Their pen is full of fresh straw, so I’m sure they’ll tuck themselves in soon. Or, not. Who knows what happens in the farmyard when the farmer goes in the house?

Honey Creek School, Beloit, Kansas

Honey Creek School

Honey Creek School

Population Density: 4

December 4, 2011

An article I read recently mentioned population density — people per square mile. The term left my brain until the other day when I was driving into town. Our farm is on the northeast corner of a section, which is 640 acres or one square mile. Population density for that square mile: 4. Us.

Head a mile north. Population density: 0. Head a mile south: 0. East: 0. West: 0.

We do have neighbors, who live just outside the sections around us. But, “aloneness” is one of the reasons we love our rural life. And, it quiets the soul to look at land free of electric poles.

In the Woods

November 25, 2011

On a  cold, gray, windy, post-Thanksgiving day, D., E., Cesar and I headed to the woods.

Such a pretty scene on the drive into town yesterday: Great lobelia (Lobelia siphilitica) in a fall pasture.

Great Lobelia

This was tucked in with my mail. Sad news regarding our country post office that I wrote about in February: https://lynnwoolf.wordpress.com/2011/02/18/whats-so-special-about-milton-kansas-67106/

My V. says,  “That little ol’ post office never hurt anyone.”

Maybe this was the last resort of a desperate person in need. I bet the good people of Milton would have helped this person, if they only had asked.

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