Stories of life on our farm in Northwest Georgia where every day is an adventure in this beautiful spot that God has entrusted to our stewardship.

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Life From Our Back Porch

The other day I snuck up on Misty in my wheelchair to get this picture of her on the porch with her latest treasure, an old hubcap.  Who knows where she found it, but she's obviously attached to it!  The dogs keep going off into the woods and finding stuff that former owners threw out there years ago or--and these make much less adorable photo ops--remains of animals that hunters abandoned in the hunting preserve.  The sticks are all Misty's, too.  Other recent finds include a piece of lumber, a dead dear head with skin attached, pieces of black plastic drain pipe . . . the list goes on.

Today some friends from church came over to clean our house--such a wonderful, thoughtful thing to do!  Misty had us in stitches with a dance she invented (clearly, to show off for her audience!)  Let's call it "The Bowla-Bowla."  It involved Misty placing one front paw on her upside-down food bowl and spinning in circles around and around it!  What a fun spirit she has!

A couple days ago I got this shot through misting rain of the animals in the Back Pasture.  Herb put them in there with a round bale of hay when he last left for Dallas to be with his sister.  That meant no one had to worry about water, hay or manure disposal with a barnyard full of animals.  But, being animals, they majored on whatever grass was growing and only minored on the hay.  So it was time to get them back to the barnyard, even if it means more work for Herb, because we HAVE to preserve our pasture.

This time I went out on the porch on crutches (so pardon some blurry photos) to enjoy the "rodeo."  First, Herb opened all the gates between the Back Pasture and this one, the Home Pasture.  He didn't even bother to halter the horses and lead them up.  He just walked on back up here.

The pounding of hooves showed the horses weren't far behind.  Here they come running through the bottom of Kara's Pasture (our central pasture).  I called the horses to be sure they'd come all the way to the Home Pasture.

They did--and I don't think they needed any encouragement.  They know the way to the barnyard and FOOD!  That little speck trailing behind the horses is Zephyr "herding" them.  Herb is on his way back down the hill to make sure the cows follow and the horses don't leave.

The horses enjoyed a race around the top of the pasture with Hero in hot pursuit.  Any excuse for a race!  (Misty kept a safe distance.)

Where that white fence tees up with this pasture (look left of the birdhouse) is where the gate is that also leads up to the barn, just not into a fenced area.  Siobhan led the cows there because she knows that's the gate we humans usually use, but we wanted the cows to come through the fenced Home Pasture.

All I did was holler for Siobhan from the porch, and suddenly she came galloping down the road away from the gate, heading right for the gate into the Home Pasture.

Smart girl!  She is the black blur through the trees (left of the satellite dish), followed by the blurs of Sara and T-Bone.

Siobhan brought them right to the gate although T-Bone was the first to charge into the pasture.  It seems he remembers about Hay and Barnyards.  And of course, there's Sara, just like the old cow's tail!

Without having had to touch an animal, Herb headed back to the barnyard, followed by Misty, to open the communicating gates between barnyard and pasture.  We never cease to be thrilled each time we put our "pasture plan" into use and see that it works!  One person can do it alone.  (Good thing, since I'm still a useless gimp!)

Once the "rodeo" (that really wasn't) was over, I watched Zephyr try her herding tactics on Brandy.  Oh, dear, she picked the hardest nut of all!

She had some success, though, and did get Brandy and Angel together.

When Herb opened the gates, Brandy stopped trying to work her way down hill and turned toward the barn--and Zephyr sprang into action, reveling in her success!

What a nice way to end things, with everybody happy:  Herb got the animals where he wants them; they are tucked up in the barnyard with plenty of hay; Hero got his race; Zephyr did some herding; and I got to enjoy it all from my back porch!

And, oh yes . . . Jackson got to bark at the w. h. o. l. e. thing from the safety of the Triplets' play yard!  Monty and Olivia were not amused (or interested), but Jackson was very happy and tail-waggy when it was all over!  He had as much fun as I did!  (I just didn't wag my tail.)


  1. That patou is looking fabulous. She is nicely insulated for the winter.

    I love the running cows. You don't normally think of cows running but the heifers can be surprisingly agile.

  2. Misty does have really thick fur, Brent. She hasn't needed it too much this winter, but there have been a few days and nights I know she was glad for it.

    I watched our heifer, Siobhan, run straight down the steep back hill the other day, whirling her tail like a propeller! I think she got a running gene from Sara because I've never known a cow to run as much as Sara! I hate to see T-Bone run, though--don't want him working any pounds off! :)


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