Friday, June 07, 2019

November Hill farm journal, 77

Busy week, but there were some lovely moments on the farm, like this one, when I looked out from the barn aisle and spied the gleaming Keil Bay, who, at 30 years of age, never fails to take my breath away.

He and I both got massages this week, first me inside the house, then Big Bay in the barn aisle. Our massage therapist said he didn’t have any major tightness or issues which makes her think he’s moving well and in a balanced way. I’m happy to know that; it fits with what I see, but nice to have it confirmed!

We’ve had a break from the unusually early hot temps this week, and it’s been wonderful relief after all those miserable days we just had of high 90s. Today on through the weekend we’re getting some needed rain. As I type it’s falling and watering everything. We actually have a number of days coming up with highs in the 70s, which is going to be even more glorious. I guess the thing about roller coaster weather is that you always get at least a little of what you like best!

The bees are doing well. We’ve chosen to leave them be for this first week, just checking to see that they have water. Tomorrow we’ll check the sugar syrup, refill the water feeders, and since it’s going to be rainy all weekend we’ll defer going into the hive to next weekend, when I’d like to get photos of the frames to make sure I see eggs and new comb being drawn out. Assuming the new comb is there we’ll go ahead and add second hive boxes to each colony.

This week I have a full-day pollinator garden design workshop to attend. We’re to bring photos of areas we’d like to plant, and I have an entire new space in mind, plus the shade bed, and I’m now also thinking of two areas for native rain gardens which will help the run-off we get through the front field when we get a lot of rain at once.

The interior fence work is progressed since last update. I think they’ll wrap it up this week. There are still two gates to hang after the fencing is done, and a number of things in the barn to do, but with summer upon us the inside work may need to wait until fall. This herd loves being in the barn with hay pillows and fans when it’s hot out!

Clementine the service pup in training had some terrific new experiences this week. She went to a children’s hospital where all kinds of physical therapy takes place and she was a superstar. I am constantly impressed with her demeanor and her patience. My daughter is doing such a good job training her. Yesterday she took her wait command to a whole new level at lunchtime. Clem knows to wait for her food bowl and the “okay” that means she can eat, but yesterday she waited for her name to be spelled out in kibble! This is a 5-month old pup. I don’t think I’ve ever known a more patient dog than she is. We’re lucky to have her with us.


Grey Horse Matters said...

Sounds like you’re getting a lot accomplished. Glad to hear your weather broke and there’s cooler temps and some rain. Sounds perfect.

Keil Bay is looking gorgeous! What a great picture of him. I’m sure the bees will be just fine. J. Actually leaves them alone most of the time and just feeds them when needed....I think. I’m not too involved with the whole process.

Clementine is a treasure. I’m guessing since she is training to be a service dog and at some point she will have to leave you. How are you ever going to say goodbye to this little sweetie someday?

billie said...

It’s so nice to have a few rainy days in a row!

With reference to leaving bees alone, I think that is the way to go for happy, healthy bees. I’m reading Tom Seeley’s new book The Lives of Bees and his thoughts after many years studying feral honey bees are really interesting. J might be interested in his work if she hasn’t already found it.

I was not clear - Clementine is my daughter’s service dog! She has mobility issues (why Ciro came to be in our lives) and after things did not work with Ciro, who was a terrific dog but even the 7 months of training didn’t prepare him for what we needed him to do, we decided the best option was to get a puppy who could grow up here with our family and learn her job along the way. It was heartbreaking with Ciro but he wasn’t able to do the job we needed him to do and he just wasn’t happy. Thankfully he has a new home and is doing well there so that part is good.

I did a huge amount of research when we decided to get a puppy and we located a breeder who focuses on golden retrievers for service and has bred for 50 years! Clem was selected particularly for our family and her job, and it totally shows in her demeanor and her aptitude. We met her mother and have videos of both her parents, her grandparents, and many related dogs including her littermates, most of whom are in service homes as well.

So she is here for the rest of her life. :)