That’s my buck!!!

I seriously can’t believe how fast time is going right now! … and that’s my excuse for having a month in between posts 😉 I wish I could say it’s because I was catching up on Law & Order reruns… but my writing job is almost full time now, and there’s only so much typing I can do at once. Plus, you know, Law & Order is on.

I am glad hunting season is over though, it was a traumatic time for me. It all started when I noticed that the jaybirds and chickadees were looking particularly hungry, and they’re all poofed out and cold. So in addition to their morning peanuts, sunflower seeds, and suet buffet, I started putting out dried corn. Then a mama deer and her tiny baby started coming by… so I convinced Gene to buy a bag of deer feed.

Fast forward a month, and now I’m responsible for a breakfast, mid-day, dinner, and evening food service for a herd of 9 adorable deer. Even a pheasant showed up one morning! (On a side note, Gene said if I don’t quit going through a bag of deer feed every 3 days I have to get another part time job).

The problem is I’ve gotten what some might call “attached”. They know me, they barely move when they see me walking to their feeding spot with two bright pink scoops of food, and I can walk within 10 feet of them. Which is actually a little scary, being surrounded by that many deer so close. And when I turn my back they creep up and start Hoovering the feed, so if I turned around I could probably pet one. One of the younger males has even started making puffing noises if I don’t get there fast enough. I hope he doesn’t start stamping his hoof, I don’t think I could run with two full scoops.

Anyway, during hunting season, every single gunshot I heard made me worry about my deer. Specifically, my buck. He’s a beautiful 4-point, which apparently they call an 9-point out here. Gene got rather tired of me roaring, “That better not have been my buck!” every time a shot rang out. And he told me I’m not allowed to talk about it in public, especially around people wearing orange.

But in my defense, we did just send Porkahantus and Chief Big Ham to freezer camp so I’ve been feeling extra protective lately. I am proud of myself though, I helped with the butchering! Not the sad, loud part of course, but I did get to use a bone saw for the first time. I didn’t realize that Gene and our friend Alan would team lift an entire half hog into the house, then thump it down on the kitchen table (note to self: need bigger table), but I handled it well. I only almost threw up once!

Now that the piggies have transitioned to a higher plane of existence, the goats have moved into the barn for the winter. They roam their pasture during the day, but we lock them in at night where it’s warmer. Which, of course, necessitated some redecorating. I convinced Gene that in order to feel fulfilled, Cocoa and Mocha needed some climbing equipment. I sketched out some grand plans, but he opted for two huge wooden spools. I have to say, the spools were a hit. As was the indoor milking station he built for me. I love the outdoor one, but it gets a little chilly with that wind blowing, and after the 19th time Cocoa kicked over the milk bucket I took the hint and added it to Gene’s to-do list. Both Cocoa and I are much happier milking in the barn.

The weather here has been crazy. We had our first blizzard, which coincided with our first power out. I was sitting at the computer, working on some dating advice that the world needs to know, and suddenly – darkness. Now if you’ll recall, I got through the Dark Days just fine, even when I was without power for 4 straight days. But apparently it left me with PTSD because I actually shrieked. At least it was only for 5 hours this time…