New cow

We've had such a big demand for our dairy herd shares, that we decided to buy another cow.
She calved 6 days before we got her.  This is baby Elisabeth.
She was born on Jenna's birthday, and Jenna's middle name is Elisabeth.
(It was also the same day that DH and I met, 30 years ago!)
As you know, we have them names for each of our mama cows and her babies.
This cow's theme is president's wives, so Elisabeth fits, for Jenna's birthday, and for the theme (President James Monroe).
Our new mama cow is named Eliza (President Andrew Johnson).
She came from the same vet/farmer that all of our Jersey's have come from.
The first day here, Eliza walked right into the milking parlor and milked like a pro, even though she had never been milked!  Yay Eliza!!!
While we were at the other farm, I just had to take a picture of this!
See the big taupe colored cow, with big ears?  It's a purebred Brown Swiss, and she is HUGE!

I was amazed, she is soooo much bigger than the Jerseys, her back was up to my  shoulders!
If she weren't infertile, I would have wanted her.
We will stick with Jersey's who have highest butter fat content of all dairy cow breeds.

Hay time again

Just two cuttings this year.  We got 50 bales.  
Pretty good for the drought we're in.

The back pasture slopes down to a creeks on both sides, and into the woods.  I'm standing near the woods for this picture.  Notice the slope?  It doesn't look like much......

But it's enough to have a runaway bale or two every year.
Then DH has to go on a rescue mission for the bales that rolled.
Emmi found this one, that rolled all the way down into the creek.
In other news, Avery did such a great job stitching these birds, 
that I felt bad that she had done them on "scrap" fabric.
Emmi graduated from scrap fabric to a dishtowel.
She is excited about ordering dishtowels and pillowcases in bulk =)
The weather is beautiful, low 80's in the afternoon, cool mornings and very breezy.  
Windows and doors have been opened most days of the last week.
Jenna and Avery are glad I'm not making them stay outside ALL the time.

The good, the bad, and the ugly

First the good; we get free sushi almost every week from a Chinese man who loves our kids, and leases a spot in the local Publix.  Actually nothing is local here, but in the next decent sized city.

We made a fantastic discovery at Librivox.org, recorded and downloadable classic books! 
They are public domain (published before 1923), which means it is free, and also that they are good wholesome books (I've only looked at the children's section).  

The kids LOVE the Thornton W Burgess animal stories!!
They have listened to the recorded books while pulling weeds, doing embroidery, and shelling peas.
Emmi has found the Thornton Burgess books on Amazon Kindle also.  She blows the font up really large, and gives Waid "reading lessons".

The bad:  Flies have been terrible on the cows this year, no sprays seem to help a whole lot.  The cows kick at them during milking.

 The milker has been kicked off many times, but yesterday it was broken, when Helen stepped on it.  We had to finish milking by hand!  Thankfully we were able to get the replacement part over-nighted to us, for a mere $49 shipping, ugh!  In the two milkings before the part arrived, we had to use duct tape to seal off the broken part, and were only able to milk out 2 teats at a time.  

DO you remember my vacuum cleaner breaking exactly 13 months ago?  Actually three broke in one week!
This week the "new" vacuum broke.  Although it only lasted a year, we liked it so much I bought another, newer version.

This one has a 5 year warranty though!

Do things seem to happen in "3's" at your house?  Do things seem to break when you're short on cash?---or is it just us????
The microwave died, too.  It is only about 18 months old.  No more 60 second cappuccino's for me, because I refuse to buy another microwave.  We only used it for cappuccino, heating frozen pancakes, and heating the very rare leftover.  All of which I can do on the stove or in the oven with very little effort.

The ugly:   pigs.  
We all love the bacon, but nobody really likes the pigs.

 We spent a morning picking up acorns in the back pasture for our homely friends.
The pigs love the acorns, and they are great for them, 
so we add a scoopful  to their food for as long as they last.


This week in bullets

-The last of the pea shelling.
-Proof we do school.
-Bought 4 tons of Chaffhaye (chopped non-gmo alfalfa).
-Swam for the last time this year, surprisingly, it was after the 1st day of fall.
-Waid built a helicopter, and wanted to show you.
-Thrilled as I realized we now have successfully trained all 12 of our little friends to stand in their spot and get hooked up for feeding.


Emmi has been very creative this week.  Notice the southern drawl on the cartoon above.
She has practicing various embroidery stitches.
She made a goat.
Next was a cow.

Though primitive, he is pretty cute!
I would not have had the patience to hand stitch this cow!

 Then onto cross stitching a book mark.
Avery made one too, but put it in the mail to Jake before I could get a picture.
We hope to have some serious sewing lessons this winter!

New history curriculum

One of the many good things about homeschooling is being able to school on your own schedule.
For us, this means year round, with days off whenever we choose, but not on a set schedule.
Because of that, the completion of various textbooks fall throughout the year.
This is great because only one part of our daily routine is changed at a time.
  It is helpful not to be tackling several new textbooks at once.
I searched high and low, and spent months deciding on Mystery of History, 
and two weeks into it---we love it!  
I decided not to do the timeline and the cards, we will only do the cards, 
and we are keeping them spiral bound for now.
The first 3 card pictures are 3 kids "summary" of lesson two.  
On the back of the card we wrote what happened each day of creation.
We quickly review these cards daily.  Eventually there will be too many cards to review each one daily.
When we get to that point, we can review random cards, of sections at a time.
The last two pictured are of Jubal and Tubal-Cain.  Below, Tubal-Cain is frowning because he hit his finger during his iron working. ;)
The best part of Mystery of History for me is the CD, which means I do not have to read aloud to the kids.  
Past experiences of the kids reading history for themselves, have not turned out well, so this is perfect! The first week we listened to the first ten lessons in one sitting, we did this 3 times with no complaints!  Then we reviewed each lesson and did the cards and any worksheets.  This curriculum gives plenty of options for additional reading and projects, but it can be done as simply as the teacher wishes.  We love it so far!