Thursday, May 31, 2012
Monday, May 28, 2012
Tom, a good boy, always does what he is told.
Huck, on the other hand, is always in trouble. “No more running and bouncing out the barn doors and down the road,” scolded Miss Watson.
“I’m so sorry, I promise to never do it again,” said Tom.
“Oh quit being such a dag gone sissy,” said Huck. “What’s the worst she can do to us? Come on, lets go out again.”
“How long do I have to hold my nose here?” asked Tom.
“Oh, quit your whining, at least YOU don’t have to whitewash the fence.”
Sunday, May 27, 2012
It was hot today. Very hot. The kid gave up jumping on the calf.
The adult ewes plastered themselves against the floor fans.
The lambs lined up on a shelf to catch the breeze of the wall fans better.
The colt thought the fans made him look fast.
The heifer calf thought the same until I explained otherwise.
“What do you mean Shorthorns aren’t exactly known for their speed?”
Even Booger only gave a half-hearted attempt to overthrow Stripe’s prime position in front of the fan.
“It’s just too hot,” he said.
It wasn’t until Dot decided she wanted some ice chips that anything at all happened in the barn today. She had heard that humans get ice chips when they go into labor so decided to give it a try.
With all the other animals passed out, she figured it was a good time to be the star of the show. She placed herself front and center, where she couldn’t possibly be missed, and proceeded to groan.
“Hey, I wanted ice chips, I don’t need a stupid cattle panel,” she said.
“Whoa, wait just a minute, what are you doing? Oh for crying out loud.”
“There, I did it. Happy? Now can I have some ice chips?”
“Well, it’s not ice chips, but I did manage to get the humans to bring me something. Maybe there really is something to this.”
The lazy goat boys were so impressed they laid around with their own fat bellies and groaned a little.
Nobody brought them anything.
Monday, May 21, 2012
Four months after arriving here, Miss Aibileen has so much shine on her nose she may need to powder it.
You might recall she had been suffering with some infections and general neglect before rescue. Her fiber was in such poor condition all the hair on her nose had worn off.
Now she’s so stinkin’ cute, Miss Aibileen could work for Maybelline.
Sunday, May 20, 2012
A major event like Civil War Days at Conner Prairie requires a massive undertaking of coordination. At any given moment there are hundreds of reenactors performing a wide variety of activities all across the grounds. It is impossible to micro-manage every single aspect of the event, the planner has to rely on the individual units to perform the tasks they are assigned without constant supervision. Let’s face it, getting through a major event like this without incident is more or less a miracle.
This morning, all eyes were on the Union troops in their military finery who were performing drills in the pasture located just outside the barn. Artillery fire and Gatlin guns could be heard in the distance. Apparently Miss V. didn’t like being outdone by a bunch of reenactors, she decided it was time to put on a show of her own by performing an actual miracle.
I was busy with my role as the camp laundress when I got the call. I quickly grabbed my camera and headed to the barn. She had very quickly given birth to a buck and a doe.
Suddenly the crowd was thinking, “Civil what?” All the attention shifted to the newborn kids.
Who could blame them?
I managed to tear myself away and return to my post, but couldn’t wait to get back to the barn later in the day. The moment I saw the little doe up close and personal my heart melted. Miss V. really did perform a miracle; she’s not just an ordinary little doe. She is by far the WORLD’S CUTEST GOAT KID because she is very, very special.
This little doe was born complete with her own jewelry. She has waddles just below her ears that make her look like she’s wearing dangly earrings!
Not all goats have waddles. If they do, they are usually on the side of the neck like Miss V’s. Needless to say,she is extremely proud of her little miracles and was up on the floor showing them off only hours after giving birth.
I’m not sure, but based on the smiles, I suspect the youth volunteers and employees working today were okay with that.
And I’m sure the guests who came expecting to see a battle were okay with seeing a birth, too.
Friday, May 18, 2012
You’ve heard the saying that in Florida you get paid in sunshine? Well as an employee at Conner Prairie, we get paid in grins…
One day when I was inside the pen trying to get pictures of the animals, I looked up and realized the cutest kids aren’t always goats.
Thursday, May 17, 2012
My son and I are busy packing and gearing up to participate as reenactors at Conner Prairie’s Civil War Days this weekend. If you are in the area stop by and look for me, I’ll be doing laundry somewhere in the Union camp.
“While you are here, if you visit the barn I might let you pet my baby, too,” said the goat.
Tuesday, May 15, 2012
Monday, May 14, 2012
Like a lot of other child stars, Mr. Duck missed out on crucial learning opportunities when he was a duckling. He was too busy working to enjoy many of the pleasures of ducklinghood. This may be part of what caused his recent behavioral issues, which spurred HR to write him up and send him to therapy.
For the first episode of Celebrity Duck Rehab, I decided we would teach Mr. Duck how to swim. Previous attempts in the big pond at Conner Prairie had failed so I decided this time to start small with a duck-size wading pool, otherwise known as a dog food bowl.
Seems Mr. Duck is more of a dip-your-toe-in kind of duck versus a diving-in-head-first guy. He eventually warmed up to it and, I think, even liked it. It wasn’t long before he was standing in it, jumping in and out, and having a great time taking a much needed shower.
The next challenge was introduced the following day, a larger pool complete with a diving board. Before I knew it I heard shouts of “Cannonball!”, followed by splashing sounds. You could say he took to it like a duck to water. (groan)
In fact, he’s had such a grand time he’s asked for a larger in-ground pool. “Why do you need a bigger pool,” I asked?
“So I can invite all my peers over for a pool party. I want to show off my mad swimming skills.”
“Um, okay, but who exactly are your peers?”
“Duh! Daffy from Warner Brothers, Donald and Scrooge from Disney…”
Saturday, May 12, 2012
The alpaca boys hit the lottery and found the very best home they could ever hope for so they packed their bags, got their pedicures and shots, and headed out this morning.
They moved to a farm 35 miles west of here where there is basically a whole swat team of super nice people who want to take great care of them. Even better, the multi-generation family knew that Willa would be lost without them and asked if they could take her with them! I cried. I’ve been so worried about Willa and where she might end up. I couldn’t be happier for all of them. Knowing they will all stay together and receive the best possible care makes me very happy.
I will miss each and every one of them, but I absolutely know it is the right thing. The timing of it all and the way it came about through my veterinarian makes me believe it was meant to be.
So the barn might be less crowded, but the coop is filling up again. Guess who followed me home this week?
Mr. Duck has taken up residence in Old One-Eyed Calico Jack’s former bachelor pad. I’m getting him set up with an online dating service. Hopefully we can find him a girlfriend soon.