Saturday, 17 January 2015

Evenings

Living on property and having animals makes for busy evenings.  Each day around here is different.  Sometimes our days are filled with appointments, sometimes we go to the pool for summer holiday fun, sometimes it's housework and shopping.  Today we're picking up a new milking goat and I'm tossing up a trip to buy fruit for preserving.  However, no matter what happens during the day, through necessity, the evenings are all pretty much the same.
I love going through the routine at days end.  Wandering to the orchard with a bucket and spoon, making up a mash for the poultry.   It's the back chooks that are fed first, followed by the dorkings, then the geese.  Lastly I feed the front chooks and leave a little in the bottom of the bucket for our lone duck.  (Must address that and find myself an appleyard drake)  The bucket is left with the duck ready to pick up the next day as I go through the process again.

Meanwhile, Belle makes up the food for the goats and fills their overnight hayfeeders.  We are both very popular with all our livestock at this time of day.  Chooks, duck and geese run after us eager for something yummy.  The kid goat maaa's away to tell us he's hungry too.
A hopeful goose!
I find a few leaves to place on the hay racks.  At this time of day we just use forage to entice the goats up to their night pens.  In the mornings, I cut more substantial forage to keep them happy in their paddock.

At this time of year, I need to attend to the garden next.  It's a rare day that I don't need to water!  Pots, a couple of the winter beds and my main summer bed, the round garden, all need to be watered.  This is a time I use to inspect the garden as well.  I've learnt a lot about gardening this year so we have some good results showing.  It's nice to check for ripening tomatoes and to wonder how I will know when the eggplant is ready.  I have one reasonably large one on the bush and I've been waiting for it to become an eggplant-y shape but wonder if it's just not going to be an elongated one.  Do you know how to tell when they're ready?
There was one special evening this week on which we were treated to a special concert complete with tickets, seating and a raffle!
It's not all roses though because I need to make the difficult decision of which plants get watered properly and which just receive the minimum they need to keep them alive through the summer.  Water is so scarce here.  Whenever it rains, the water soaks into the parched soil rather than running off into the dam.  We need flooding rains to fill it again.  Sadly, this week Victoria received flooding rains but we somehow missed out.  We had plenty of beautiful rain on the garden but not enough to fill our dams.  My rhubarb is a sorry sight as it is one of the plants I've held the water back from so that I can grow the annual veggies well.

Once the watering is complete it's back into the house and back to reality.  The mundane tasks of dishes to be dealt with, picking up some of the days mess, tallying up all the jobs I didn't get done and wondering where the day went!

10 comments:

Cheryl said...

Good busy is what I'd call that. It beats going to work Monday-Friday with a 2 hr commute, and still having housework and kids to deal with! (not that I have that life either, I'm just saying many do, I'd much rather your busy)

Jude Wright said...

Your life sounds remarkably similar to ours. We too are short of water, even though there has been rain, it doesn't make it to the dam. We too do the evening feeding (and checking that everyone is OK). I only get to the garden every few days unfortunately, but I have good intentions.
Added to this is the 20 hours of study per week I do (Bachelor of Education) online and the one day a week I work at a local school.
Life on a property is fairly intense and always interesting, I wouldn't trade it for anything.

Crunchie's Mum said...

We missed the bulk of the rain as well but I'm grateful for what we did get. Its sad watching the dam get lower over summer but you know the rains will come again and fill it in autumn and all will be green again.

Phil Pogson said...

I really like that T shirt the goose is looking at....did you dye it yourself?

Linda said...

Haha Cheryl, I'm super good busy then! You're right though. It's a great way to spend time.

Wow Jude! I don't know how you fit study in! I take my hat off to you.

Oh I hope so Crunchie's Mum!! Can't imagine it right now.

Hi Phil, we bought it at a farmer's market. The lady even does little baby's singlets. I could find out which markets she goes to if you would like?

purplepear said...

Much the same here minus the children.

Brittany Homemaker said...

I have really enjoyed your posts. I can relate to the things you go through with your son, as the mother of my mentally disabled daughter. God bless!

Linda said...

I can imagine you'd have lots of jobs to get through in the evening Kate!

Hi Brittany. Glad you enjoy reading here though I don't post as often as I'd like these days! How old is your son?

Linda said...

Oops! Sorry Brittany. Just popped over to you blog. You have a daughter as it clearly says in your comment. I'm a bit dopey early in the morning. You've been through a really tough time! Hugs to you and your family.

Sustainable and the City said...

what a tomato slice! and that exciting eggplant! sounds like a lot of rewarding work. i grew up with a bunch of chooks in my backyard and am missing having them more every day. lovely to read your nightly routine.