But first things first: My thoughts most days begin and end with our grandbaby Cameron, now 3 weeks old. Here is my favorite photo, taken when he was only half that age:
We keep up with Ben and Erin (the usually-tired-but-adoring parents) by phone, photos and video chats. We won’t get to see Cameron again until Thanksgiving (when all 4 grandparents will descend on the quiet little family). It will be grand!
We have been busy this fall, and every day seems to carry its own agenda…often separate from what we thought that we would be doing! Pre-winter busyness only ends with snowfall; perhaps not long from now!
Usually autumn is an almost restful time of year here; for a month or so, the sheep graze on open pastures, with all the cross-fencing from summer intensive grazing removed. When they think that they are done grazing, we begin to feed hay twice a day out in the field. This goes on until snow cover. It keeps them out of winter pens longer, and their left-overs and manure are good for the pastures.
But we have been away a lot: We made two journeys to Eugene in the last month, and I made one work-visit to AZ (shortened suddenly by Erin’s C-section). Once home, I went with Brook on a nine hour trip to a wood-seller in ID, and he went with me on an equally long trip to the Tri-Cities area in southern WA state. One of those trips is shrouded in secrecy (!); I will talk about the other one next time.
Brook has been busy on the irrigation ditches, helping to rebuild the structures destroyed by the floods in June. Thankfully, the floods had very little effect on our farm, but elsewhere in the valley, the waters rushed over pastures and barnyards, and took out bridges and roads. I will put these in as thumbnails for you to enlarge if you like:
I helped on one of the cement projects restoring the diversion box for our ditch….and on another day, was a “go-fer” on the big cement pour for our main head-gate. I took some photos while yards and yards of concrete were flowing down the chute into the forms that had taken months to design and create…very exciting, very tense.
But the end result was perfect; it was good to see such a huge effort turn out so well. Good job guys!
The last photo was taken with our brand new camera….our old Cannon has been ailing and is not long for this world. Brook had been carefully analyzing camera data when Michelle got her new Panasonic Lumix. At that point, we hadn’t been able to see one of these cameras up close, but a Lumix had been Brook’s top choice. Michelle’s road-tests were enough for us; our new camera arrived on Thursday.
There are lots of settings possible, but for my run-in photos, I used the automatic settings (which are very intelligent BTW) and did some low-light shots of sheep and chickens. When I took the photos, it was almost dusk; I expected blurry “motion-pictures”, but the Lumix passed this test with flying colors. Thanks Michelle!
This low-light photo shows a few of this spring’s chicks, now teenagers. In this group: our young Buff Brahma cockerel and assorted pullets…Buff Brahma ladies, one of the Speckled Sussex and two Aracaunas. There are others; so for all fellow chicken lovers, I promise more feathery shots soon!