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Ponies at work

I put out the bat call on Sunday afternoon. "Would love some help with the ponies as I hitch them to a stoneboat for the first time!" Kelly showed up to find out what the heck a stoneboat is. But we safely harrowed the pasture and took the stoneboat for a short ride. The main trouble was that I literally got my lines crossed (then sorted out). Another issue is Dolly biting her little brother Duke. Not many tractors have HR problems.

Where's My Toothbrush?

What do great horned owls, tiny goats, and a toothbrush all have in common? They conspired to test my dedication to oral hygiene, aided and abetted by the sagging pocket on my Carhartt jacket. Hearing owls almost every evening, I know I need to tuck the baby goats into their coop at night. I do this as late as possible so they can get a good meal before bed. So when I stagger out there just before bedtime, and struggle with the awkward door while squirming goats leap up to lick my face, it's possible for something essential--a toothbrush, for instance--to fall out of my pocket into the straw. "Where's my toothbrush?" I asked Daniel as I pulled my backup brush out of the bathroom drawer.

Goat Births in Four Acts

Prologue: A dozen people had asked me to alert them when the goats were giving birth. Did they really want to see a birth? Just know when they could visit newborn kids? I should have asked. First Act: Pumpkin looks like she might go into labor: pawing, mumbling, looking distracted, wanting to be comforted. I text the goat-watching group and spend the night in the barn. No kids appear. Repeat for another night. Except this time people have taken me up on my offer to sleep in the barn. Still no kids in the night. Our friend Lindsey sleeps in the cold but has to leave around 9 in the morning--which turns out to be half an hour before Pumpkin delivers twins. Heidi, who slept on the sofa

The Kids and Mama Maple

I took the 5-year-olds to the big-leaf maple where Bob put in 4 spiles last week. We get several gallons of sap a day, and the sunny afternoon had the sap dripping into the collection jar. The kids were entranced. They dripped sweet sap into their mouths. They filled cups and argued about whose tube was flowing fastest. We thanked the tree and listened to the gurgle of approaching spring.

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Woodinville, WA 98072, USA

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