Friday, May 2, 2014

We did what?

What an interesting few days, the kind where memories are made!

Thursday was Bring Your Child to Work Day at my office. Normally, a child can't even think about stepping foot in my office. Jonathan has been asking to visit my office for a long time. After years of not having a program, this year, we finally had a scheduled program.

Our day started with Jonathan obtaining his very own badge and lanyard that had his name on it. He was delighted! After check in, and dropping off our things at my office, we headed to the main event area. We listened to a short welcome from our division VP, and hit a variety of activity stations. Jonathan learned about the census, had his fingerprints taken, learned about centrifugal force, manned a robot, built a robot finger and had a lesson in structural engineering. The highlight of the day however was the video and presentation by former astronaut Rick Hieb.

Jonathan and astronaut Rick Hieb

After the video, Mr. Hieb signed photos for all the children in attendance. Jonathan brought along a book about space which Mr. Hieb also signed. After the first round of signatures, Jonathan asked if he would sign a picture for his father and sister, which he did.

After the astronaut highlights, Jonathan scored extra cookies in the cafeteria for looking so sharp. I had to do a little work in the afternoon. He made himself comfortable for a while, found cupcakes in the community kitchen, then played hide and seek with a co-worker's daughter that came to work.

While Jonathan and I were at work, Ghon had the day off and decided to have a daddy-daughter day, or their own version of bring your child to work day. They started their day with breakfast and a trip to Lowes.

According to Ghon, he was looking at some other plants, and Genevieve grabbed her own flat bed cart and started loading blueberry bushes and plum trees, pushing it herself and telling him "they needed them."

Of course he bought them.

They also said goodbye to Telescope Head and Jackass. Roosters are just mean, and after the smaller rooster, Jackass (no, the kids do not know him by this name), attacked Genevieve, and I attacked him back, I told Ghon they had to go. The only cool thing about a rooster is hearing their crow, but they are just downright mean. He posted on a local farm group on Facebook that they were free to any home, and they were picked up that afternoon.

Note 1: Genevieve was not hurt by the rooster attack. He charged her from behind and pecked at her thigh, no marks left.
Note 2: I do not know if the rooster was hurt. I was holding an empty bucket, and despite my usual poor hand/eye coordination, whacked that rooster straight across the run when he came at Genevieve.
Note 3: Our homeowners insurance does not cover chicken attacks. I had to sign a waiver noting this. Ironic that Jackass sealed his fate after I signed the waiver? Brandi, if you are reading this, take note - Telescope Head and Jackass are gone. :)

After saying good riddance to the roosters, Ghon and Genevieve did a little planting in the garden then started making the goats a jungle gym.

Genevieve checking out the stairs.

Dora was brave enough to test it out right away.

Ghon had a doctor appointment in Frederick, so at the end of the day, the four of us met up for dinner then I brought the kids home.

Daddy and his Punkie

Friday was a riot. Daycare was closed and Jonathan's school had a half day. The kids and I had a relaxing morning while Ghon headed to the farm to work. After Genevieve and I dropped Jonathan off at school, we headed to the store to buy snacks for his t-ball game the next day. After, we met up with Ghon at Meadows Farms. We purchased most of the trees for the orchard there last year, and they have a one year guarantee. Of the roughly 20 trees we have, only four seem not to have survived the winter. Two were from the nursery, so Ghon dug them up to return/exchange them.

He ended up getting three new trees, in addition to the two Genevieve picked out the day before. Two are a new tree variety that will actually bear fruit this year. They are both apple trees - can't wait to see the fruit this year.

Genevieve wanted to help push the cart with the new trees.

After our quick outing, Genevieve and I had to head back home to get Jonathan from the school bus. We headed home, changed into farm clothes and tried to beat the rain to do some garden planting.

We failed. Miserably.

Donning our work clothes, rain coats, and Genevieve toting her bumbrella (not a typo), we planted a few remaining broccoli plants that Genevieve and Ghon hadn't finished the day before. The rain got harder as we finished and we all decided to quit. I helped Ghon cover the lawn tractor, got the kids in the car, and we headed home. Home is only 6 minutes. It was a very wet 6 minutes.

Of course there are no pictures. My camera would have been drenched from the monsoon that hit. Our clothes were soaked, our shoes covered in mud. I had a hat on, and it was so wet it was dripping. Not a drip here and a drop there, it was dripping.

The kids thought it was quite amusing that I had them strip down at the landing as they walked in the house. Everything was soaked, right on down to the undies! It was time to change into comfy clothes for the rest of the evening.

Thanks to all the rain Friday, Jonathan's baseball game was cancelled on Saturday. Have no fear, we went to Taekwondo instead! After, we made a few quick stops, including a stop at the local farmer's market, then headed home to get into some farm clothes. We had a special mission to partake in.

When Ghon first decided to get Dave and Dora, I insisted that Dave be neutered. I honestly don't think we know enough about goats, but we are learning. The one thing I did know was that a girl goat and a boy goat can make baby goats. And I have no time for baby goats. Ghon found someone through a farming Facebook page to come and do the deed.

Now, let me educate you on goat neutering. It's not at all like neutering a dog or a cat. The process is called banding. Knowing next to nothing about goats, we did pick up a book and Ghon read about the process. It's simple, but being a male, Ghon couldn't handle it. Basically, you wrap a band around the testicles, which will eventually shrivel and fall off.

Ya still with me fellas?

You stick a band, around the testicles at the point they meet the body, then they swell for a few days, then shrink and fall off. The process takes about 6 weeks.

Had to repeat that in case it wasn't clear.

Of course, Ghon had to work Saturday, which left me in charge of goat chasing and assisting with the neutering. Which he thought was hilarious.

The kids and I did some of our normal Saturday activities in town, headed home to change into "farm" clothes, and back to the farm we went.

I told the kids we had to meet someone there who was going to help us take care of Dave. I wasn't sure how I was going to explain this procedure to Jonathan. Fortunately, kids remember things. Like the fact Dave had a little diarrhea when we got him. Once I mentioned someone was going to help him, Jonathan proclaimed, "Oh, they're going to help with his diarrhea?"

Lie? Don't lie? Lie? Don't lie?

My reply: "Well, maybe."

Fortunately, that sufficed and off they play

Not long after we arrived, Tim stopped by. I ran down the sechedule of events for Dave, and he asked if we needed help. Thank you!! I am not going to have to do this alone!

A few minutes later, Sherry arrived with her daughter. The kids ran off to play with each other, while the three adults headed into the goat pen.

It didn't take long to corner Dave, which I thought would be the hardest part. Tim got behind him and walked him toward Sherry and I. He ended up getting a little spooked and ran into a fence, and Sherry grabbed him right up. She showed me how to hold him, and I handed the camera to Tim to document the progress for Ghon.

I'll let the pictures do the talking now.

Lucky for Dave, he had a good set at his age. Sherry prepped the band on her tool and checked the angle/placement.

The rubber band is placed snug against Dave's tummy. The testicles will swell a bit, then slowly shrivel and fall off.

And men get all worked up over the idea of a vasectomy.

That was about 10 minutes start to finish, including catch time. It wasn't until a few hours later that Jonathan mentioned anything about it. He asked if that lady was going to cut off Dave's "wedgie." I assured him that the woman did not cut Dave, and he left it alone.

After Sherry and Tim left, the kids and I did a little farm work.

Raking out the chicken run

Add caption

Back to the chicken catching.

After catching the chicken, Jonathan started chasing them around. After several attempts of asking him to stop, and him not listening, I sent him out of the chicken run.

Real tears! This is what happens when you don't listen and have to leave the chickens.

I'm such a mean mommy.

Once Genevieve and I finished in the chicken run, we headed to the garden for more planting. On the way, I spotted this bird in the gutter.

I had minimal planting help. Jonathan planted 4-5 broccoli plants with me before joining Genevieve in an epic digging event!

First, a little worm play!

The hole he dug all by himself.

Genevieve switched quickly from holes to a dirt cake, then a big dirt birthday cake, complete with stick candles.

Just like a beach - buried alive!

I'm flying Mommy!

Dave neutered, chickens taken care of, plants planted, last stop, to feed the goats.

It's not just a jungle gym for goats, but kids too.

My sillies!

That was our weekend! Now that this has taken a week to write this post, here's a quick update on what's happened this week.

Now that the young chickens are running out and about, we have to make sure they go to bed every night to avoid night predators.  Ghon found two bodies Monday, one completely chewed on. We think these were from a hawk.

Tuesday night, Ghon headed down to close the door, as he hasn't completely figured out the new timer. He called me with "uh-oh."

He watched a chicken be carried out of the coop. By a skunk.

The fence around the yard needs a little re-securing I suppose, and we need to figure out the timer. Dang critters.

This weekend is the Apple Blossom Festival here in Winchester. It's a big deal, but we've always avoided as much as we could and are normally at a chili cook-off this weekend. The kids and I are going to hit up a few parades, a street festival and our favorite, fireworks!!

1 comment:

  1. I think it's important to do activities with your children. It's a way to get close to them and make a connection with them. I'm glad your family is united and makes such activities. Take care!