Farming in February

Lost a few ducks the last few days… don’t know what happens: the dogs don’t seem to act like anything is amiss, yet there’s one less poufy and one less cream colored duck. And there used to be 19 mallard type and now there’s only 17. They’re still avoiding their pond for the most part, which is odd. Unless that’s where the “Disappearances” are happening. (They may be ducks but they’re not dumb.)  There’s no signs of struggle, and the only tracks I see are deer. And bunny poop. The poor ducks; when it’s gets cold the poufys get to be looking pretty poorly. And one cream colored one had a frozen chunk of something hanging off it one day. Last Sunday was so nice the poufy ones got cleaned up and the frozen chunk fell off. 

And then one day it was sunny and they were down in the pond over the noon hour and hungry and wanted to eat. You can see the duck butts sticking up as they eat corn off the bottom. 

Maybe it’s just night time they don’t want to be down there.  
I’ve talked about the coyotes before and how many ducks and chickens they take. I heard some of the neighborhood guys were hunting coyotes and got 20 or so.  Which you’d think would be good news for the ducks, but evidently not. 

Our dog Humphrey- he’s such a good dog. And polite. He’ll take a drink, then come to us to burp him. It’s so weird. We pat his chest, he burps, and then he’ll go lay down. He does need the sensitive stomach food. We’ve always said he’s a delicate flower. 

Bailey: she’s the one burying her treats in the snow or dirt and eating dead things and she loves playing in the snow.


My shoulder is good. I go to the doc Monday to get stitches out and start physical therapy. I’m hoping to lose the sling but I kinda doubt PT will say that yet.
It really hasn’t been bad. I did Velcro myself to the wall one day. This thing has so many straps and so much Velcro and I sat down on the bench in the entryway and stuck myself to the Velcro on the sleeves of my jacket. Which was still hung on the wall. Can’t reach the hook, can’t reach the Velcro. It was kinda funny. 

I’m back at ‘work’ work and I’ve been lighting the musical ‘Jekyll and Hyde’ at the college. It’s a dark musical. I’ve got some pretty looks, even though it’s not exactly a “pretty” show.

It’s not a college production; we don’t do musicals (they’re too expensive). This is a local group renting the space.


50 thoughts on “Farming in February”

  1. Sorry about the ducks, Ben! I love seeing ducks upended – there’s a little song from kindergarten:
    All my little ducklings swim across the sea
    Heads are in the water, tails look up at me.

    Is the top dog photo Humphrey, with Bailey next?

    I cannot stand on my head, but I USED to be able to do the tripod leading up to it.

    I was in 5th grade or so before I knew there was even a word for farting… I remember my cousin teasing me.
    My favorite s-i-l once had a little book about farts with line drawings that made us laugh out loud… the one that comes to mind was a page titled “Animal Blame”. : )

    I predict this is going to be a funny couple of days on the Trail.

    Liked by 5 people

    1. It’s all Bailey in those photos. Bailey has even ridden in the tractor with Kelly the last few days. Kelly is pleased to have the company and that Bailey has accepted Kelly.

      Liked by 3 people

  2. “You are old, father William,” the young man said,
    “And your hair has become very white;
    And yet you incessantly stand on your head —
    Do you think, at your age, it is right?”

    “In my youth,” father William replied to his son,
    “I feared it would injure the brain;
    But now that I’m perfectly sure I have none,
    Why, I do it again and again.”

    “You are old,” said the youth, “as I mentioned before,
    And have grown most uncommonly fat;
    Yet you turned a back-somersault in at the door —
    Pray, what is the reason of that?”

    “In my youth,” said the sage, as he shook his grey locks,
    “I kept all my limbs very supple
    By the use of this ointment — one shilling the box —
    Allow me to sell you a couple.”

    “You are old,” said the youth, “and your jaws are too weak
    For anything tougher than suet;
    Yet you finished the goose, with the bones and the beak —
    Pray, how did you manage to do it?”

    “In my youth,” said his father, “I took to the law,
    And argued each case with my wife;
    And the muscular strength, which it gave to my jaw,
    Has lasted the rest of my life.”

    “You are old,” said the youth; one would hardly suppose
    That your eye was as steady as ever;
    Yet you balanced an eel on the end of your nose —
    What made you so awfully clever?”

    “I have answered three questions, and that is enough,”
    Said his father; “don’t give yourself airs!
    Do you think I can listen all day to such stuff?
    Be off, or I’ll kick you down stairs!”

    Liked by 8 people

  3. I used to be able to stand on my head, but considering the arthritis in my spine and neck, plus the sixty added pounds I’ve added in body weight since my glory days (if you can call them that), it probably would be a risky proposition, at best. It probably wouldn’t be a pretty sight either.

    Liked by 4 people

  4. I used to be able to walk on my hands, too. Only short distances, though, I wasn’t very good at it. I sometimes wonder to what extent some of the physical “exercises” I did regularly as a teen have contributed to the gradual deterioration of certain joints in my body. Not necessarily the exercises themselves when done correctly, but the falls and tumbles that sometimes resulted when they weren’t executed properly. Too soon old, too late schmart.

    Liked by 6 people

  5. Husband says he could walk on his hands and stand on his head. I could stand on my head.

    My father’s gas station was designed with a peaked roof and a high ceiling. There was a metal pole inside that supported the roof and that went all the way to the highest part of the ceiling. I could shimmy all the way to the top of the pole.

    Liked by 5 people

  6. I could stand on my head but don’t remember ever being able to walk on my hands or even do a handstand on land. I could easily do it in chest high water, though. I could (and maybe still can) do front and backward somersaults but cartwheels defied me. My best friend and I were the smallest (height and weight) in our junior high PE class. We were often chosen to demonstrate things such as rope climbing and chin ups. Can’t imagine doing any of that now.

    Liked by 5 people

    1. Daily Quordle #33
      🟨🟨⬜⬜⬜ ⬜⬜🟨⬜🟨
      ⬜🟨⬜🟨⬜ 🟩⬜⬜⬜⬜
      🟩🟩🟩🟩🟩 ⬜⬜⬜⬜⬜
      ⬛⬛⬛⬛⬛ 🟩🟩🟩🟩🟩

      ⬜🟨⬜⬜⬜ ⬜⬜🟨🟨⬜
      ⬜⬜⬜⬜⬜ 🟨⬜⬜⬜⬜
      ⬜🟩⬜⬜🟨 ⬜⬜⬜⬜⬜
      ⬜⬜⬜⬜⬜ 🟨🟨🟨⬜⬜
      🟩🟩🟨⬜⬜ ⬜⬜⬜⬜⬜
      🟩🟩⬜🟨🟨 ⬜⬜⬜⬜⬜
      🟩🟩🟩🟩🟩 ⬜⬜⬜⬜⬜
      ⬛⬛⬛⬛⬛ 🟨🟨🟨⬜⬜
      ⬛⬛⬛⬛⬛ 🟩🟩🟩🟩🟩

      Liked by 1 person

        1. Daily Quordle #33

          ⬜⬜⬜🟩⬜ ⬜🟨🟨⬜⬜
          ⬜🟨🟨🟩⬜ ⬜⬜⬜⬜⬜
          ⬜⬜🟨🟨🟨 ⬜🟨⬜⬜⬜
          🟩🟩🟩🟩🟩 ⬜⬜⬜⬜⬜
          ⬛⬛⬛⬛⬛ ⬜⬜⬜⬜⬜
          ⬛⬛⬛⬛⬛ 🟩🟩🟩🟩🟩

          ⬜⬜⬜⬜⬜ ⬜🟨🟨⬜⬜
          ⬜🟨🟨⬜⬜ ⬜⬜⬜⬜⬜
          ⬜⬜🟨🟩⬜ ⬜⬜⬜⬜⬜
          ⬜🟩⬜⬜🟨 ⬜⬜⬜⬜⬜
          🟩🟩🟩🟩⬜ ⬜⬜⬜⬜⬜
          ⬜⬜⬜⬜⬜ 🟨🟨🟨⬜⬜
          ⬜⬜⬜⬜⬜ ⬜🟩🟨⬜🟩
          🟩🟩🟩🟩🟩 ⬜⬜⬜⬜⬜
          ⬛⬛⬛⬛⬛ 🟩🟩🟩🟩🟩


    2. I didn’t make Quordle on Saturday or Sunday. Unbelievable how many five letter words are that end with the same last four letters. And I probably wouldn’t have figured out the last couple of words on either of the Quordles anyway. Not exactly run-of-the-mill words.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Not anymore… no… but I used to do back flips, cartwheels, head and hand stands, walked on my hands, and all kinds of gymnastic moves. I surely do miss that young, strong, lithe body. She’s gone, along with my dark hair. Couldn’t climb ropes, not ever. I did climb trees but I couldn’t get down. I’ve always had a tough time getting back down from high places. I’ve learned not to go up in the first place.

    We have a family story. I hope my mom isn’t reading this blog. She wouldn’t want me to tell it but it has lasted through the decades. When I was a little girl, we lived out on Cannon Lake. We had a big 1960s-era station wagon. We piled in one day to go into town for something. We always saw lots of ducks out there, especially in the spring. So on this one day on the way into town a middling-sized bird flew up out of the road ditch. My dear mom said, “Oh look! There’s a duck! You can always tell a duck!” It was a pheasant.

    Liked by 6 people

  8. Sorry about your missing ducks, Ben. I’d not make a very good farmer. I’d fret too much at such losses, but I suspect they are inevitable in a place such as yours. I suppose you also get used to such disappearances happening, although you obviously notice them?

    Liked by 2 people

    1. It’s a choice; totally ‘free-ranging’ or spend the time and money to build a coyote and raccoon proof fence. But yes, I know I’m going to lose a percentage.
      I don’t know very many of the ducks or chickens individually. If one makes pets of them, they’re the first ones to disappear. Dark humor says the fancy, expensive ones, they’ll get picked off first. It is more just that one day I notice there used too be 10 of those chickens and now there’s 8.
      I wonder if it’s Darwinism or just luck? Do the ‘Black Australorp’ (all black chickens) survive longer because they’re harder to catch in the dark?

      Liked by 5 people

  9. I am late to the party today—we had a date with our 16 yo grandson that kept us busy. It was the first time in a couple years, due to pandemic isolation, that we really got to visit with him. It turns out he is a deep thinker. We got to hear his thoughts ranging from his futures to what he thinks of politicians in AZ (not much, as it turns out). It was so much fun.

    When I was a kid I stood on my head, did cartwheels and summersaults, lived inside my hula hoop. Alas, I could not walk on my hands. I have never had the kind of upper body strength that takes.

    It amazes me how boys, ages ? to the early teen years, are obsessed with making real or fake bodily noises. Two 14 yo nephews stayed with us for 4-5 days about 20 years ago. I swear they spent the entire visit producing noises of every kind, but flatulence was their specialty. To my amazement after a certain amount of this, my husband would join the act and re-produce his adult version of the same, dissolving into giggles as if he was age 14.

    Liked by 6 people

      1. Way to go, Jacque.
        Wordle 253 2/6*

        Are you doing the Quordle too? As you can see, it was slow going at first for me, but then it clicked.
        Daily Quordle #34
        ⬜⬜🟨🟨⬜ ⬜⬜⬜⬜⬜
        🟨⬜⬜⬜⬜ 🟨⬜⬜⬜⬜
        🟨🟨🟨🟨⬜ ⬜🟨⬜🟨⬜
        🟨⬜⬜⬜⬜ ⬜🟨🟨⬜⬜
        🟨⬜⬜⬜⬜ ⬜⬜⬜⬜⬜
        ⬜⬜⬜⬜⬜ 🟩⬜⬜⬜⬜
        ⬜🟩🟨⬜🟨 🟩🟩🟩🟩🟩
        🟩🟩🟩🟩🟩 ⬛⬛⬛⬛⬛

        🟨⬜⬜🟨⬜ ⬜🟨⬜⬜🟨
        ⬜⬜⬜⬜⬜ ⬜🟩🟩🟨⬜
        🟩⬜⬜⬜⬜ ⬜⬜⬜⬜⬜
        🟩⬜⬜🟩🟩 ⬜🟨⬜⬜⬜
        🟩🟩🟩🟩🟩 ⬜⬜🟨⬜⬜
        ⬛⬛⬛⬛⬛ 🟩🟩🟩🟩🟩

        Liked by 1 person

        1. I’ve been puzzling over the bottom left word in Quordle for quite some time. I’ve eliminated a lot of letter possibilities, but nothing I have left seems to make a word. I see you got that one first, PJ. Makes me wonder if I got the same puzzle you did.

          Liked by 1 person

  10. used to do a tripod head stand
    never hand walker
    armpit farts are great fun
    never could whistle with blade of grass or do the cab hailing whistle
    mouth noises like spoons on my cheeks and teeth
    isn’t it funny how when your married for 10 or 20 years farts are just part of the deal
    the pope
    queen elizabeth
    walter cronkite
    farts all

    Liked by 3 people

  11. Not sure whether the creaking and crunching noises in my neck whenever I turn my head can be heard by anyone but me. Either way, I’m pretty sure that’s not the kind of body noises you had in mind.

    My sister has a long-held theory about farts. If you can sneak one out without anyone hearing it, the smell will give it away. The noisy ones don’t smell, she claims. I’m not convinced that theory holds up to closer scrutiny, but I’m not about to investigate.

    Liked by 5 people

  12. Cannot now nor have I ever really been able to do handstands. Splits, yes, but upper body strength of the sort you need for handstands and cartwheels have been lacking. Attempts to get my feet over my head result in a wide variety of body noises, many of them impolite.

    Thinking about the ducks – duck butts just amuse me. A few years ago, a friend was going through a truly rough patch and having anxiety attacks pretty regularly. During part of that time, I was up in the Brainerd Lakes area where there are lots of ducks – so I started sending him photos of the duck butts… Ducks continue to be our shorthand for, “you got this, just keep paddling under the surface – and show the world our backside when you need to.”

    Liked by 6 people

  13. I was fairly limber as a youngster. I could do a cartwheel and a headstand. I could get up on my hands but I wasn’t very solid once I got up unless there was a wall. I never could do splits but I could for many many years bend over and put my hands flat on the floor without bending my knees. None of that happens anymore.

    Liked by 5 people

  14. I have one knee that complains audibly, especially when I’m walking downstairs. I believe it’s called crepitus. It’s a slightly squishy grindy sort of sound. Once I was young and didn’t have to listen to my knee making that sound. Of course, I had other kinds of problems then.

    Liked by 4 people

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