Saturday, June 15, 2013

New Blog is Up

I've decided to move over to Wordpress and start up the new blog rather than clean up this one and redo everything.  The address is:

Come on over and enjoy.  My focus is the story of our lives at the ranch.  With any luck, I can stay focused!

Monday, June 10, 2013

3rd Bloggaversery

Today this blog is 3 years old.  It's not much of a blog as blogs go but it's mine.  A change is in order here.  Most of what I've written here has been a total mishmash of whatever ran across my mind at the time.  That's lead to a blog about "whatever Groundhog was thinking about at the time", or no real theme.  I've gotten stuck a lot too because I often have a lot of inflammatory thought running about current events that I can't figure out how to turn into more thoughtful posts.

I've decided a change is in order.  I don't know how well it will work or how long I'll keep at it but I'm going to give it a whirl.  The next post will be in the new format.  It may be a bit as I have to fix some stuff here first.  So stay tuned!

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Three Down

"Removed" the 3rd rat snake so far from the chicken coop this evening.  This one was a tad smaller than the last two.  Only about 4 feet long.  Don't know if it's good or bad but I'm getting better at "removing" them.  All the chickens have grown greatly.  One still has some missing feather area.  Not sure if it's just a runt, slow, or something else.  It's one of the Barred Rock ones.  I'll have to get some more pictures and video on here, although "here" is getting ready to change.  I'll fill you in on that next post.

Monday, May 27, 2013

Memorial Day

The day we honor those who have given the ultimate sacrifice for their nation.  I hope we can truly honor them by saving our land of liberty so their sacrifices will never have been in vane.

Sunday, May 5, 2013

Another One!

This one was a surprise this morning.  We were out the door on the way to church and I went to check on Rebel when I saw this ewe with something hanging from her tail.  Further investigation showed some clear sack with what was probably amniotic fluid in it.  She was also leaking this fluid.  I believe we caught her right after water broke.  Videos are a tad graphic so if you're squeamish you might not ought to watch.

This video shows the birth!

Momma bailed right after giving birth so we stepped in. Probably a tad prematurely but after losing the twin a few days ago I didn't want to take any chances. It was pretty cool out this morning and the baby was shivering.

Attempts at bonding throughout the day failed. Including with Rebel's mom.

Mom would come over to baby and paw at it rather violently. The mom of the twins did the same thing but it was much more gentle. It appeared to be an attempt to get the baby to stand up. This was more violent. Then she'd head butt the baby and did so pretty hard. We could not get her corraled in a small spot to attempt a bond and I was getting afraid she would hurt it. The twins mom was a lot more tolerant but she would also gently head butt it to tell it to go away. We gave up for the day after feeding the flock and seeing no interest from mom. She is bleating distressed but can't figure out that the fix is baby. Pistol (that's her name) may have to be reared by hand. At least the flock is accepting of her. We'll need to get her out with them a lot.

Saturday, May 4, 2013

Rough Week

I need a barn.  Seriously, in a really bad way.  Living with sheep and chickens in your house is both smelly and noisy.  Not to mention a lot of work.  The twins had a rough start and the boy didn't make it.  Vet guessed pneumonia.  The girl started having breathing noises as well so we got her to the vet asap.  One shot of anti-biotics and anti-inflamitory later and she seems to be doing quite well.  The boy was pretty frail though and Rebel, that's her name now, seemed to be a lot more filled out.  She's visibly grown in the last few days.  She also figured out how to nurse yesterday, thank God.  Now we're not "mama" any more and real mom is bonding quite well.  Today they spend at least the day with the heard while we "de-barn" the house.

Also, we're going to graduate some chicks today.  At least 4 are probably big enough to go out to the coop.  I will have to watch them to make sure they can't get out lest they become dog snacks.  Interestingly, sheep stink more than chickens do.  That needs to be a country wisdom post right there!  Actually, I think I may have a few new ones after this week.  Mrs. G and daughter #! were awesome troopers taking care of the newborns, staying up in shifts to feed and hold.  Very tough on us all losing the baby boy.

A note on Great Pyrenees as flock guard dogs.  They are on top of things.  Momma was in great distress when her babies were not with her.  When we had to take Rebel to the vet yesterday, we sent her out to be with the heard.  They make a very sad, pathetic, and urgent baaing noise when in distress.  The 3 dogs surrounded her and escorted her to the rest of the flock.  It was truly amazing.  They earn their bone treats daily!

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

First Set of Twins!

Might take a couple of tries for me to get this post right.  Pix and vid below.

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Monday, April 22, 2013


I am now beardless.  This morning I weighed in at 249.2 pounds.  250 is history!

Saturday, April 20, 2013


One of the positions of gun control proponents is that gun rights advocates are paranoid and want guns for "imagined tyranny".  Because our government is always good and no government has ever gone down hill into despotic tyranny in only a few years time.  Just never happens right?  Riiiiiiiiiggggggghhhhhhhhtttttt...

Here is my answer to them:

Tyranny prepared for is tyranny that will only ever be imagined.

- Groundhog

Wednesday, April 10, 2013


Tons of stuff to post about.  No time to post!

Doot doot de doot doot... breaking news... well, broke anyway over last few weeks.

Rat snake tried to eat egg.  Shot and stabbed said snake and it still got away.  Status unknown.

20 new chicks take up residence at ranch.

4 lambs survive brutal south Texas spring so far.

Spike and Queeny finally give in to new owners petting requests.

Kid goes to hospital, scares parents.  Goes to miracle doc and gets rib popped out for instant cure!  Yeah, really weird that one...

Film at eleven...

Saturday, March 23, 2013

There I Was...

So last Sunday I threw a 50 lb. feed sack on my shoulder and took it the 30 yards to the feed shed or so.  It was also feeding time so after that Mrs. G and I were going to feed everybody.  Well, "everybody" knows when we're out there at that time of day that magic manna feed is going to shortly appear in their bowls.  But first, it rides in buckets to get there.  And if you're lucky, you can get your head in one of those buckets and get some!  This necessitated the birth of Emu Ninjutsu by the way, but that's another story.

"Everybody" was huddled around the feed storage shed and us Sherpas.  That's not where they are supposed to be.  I decided to grab one of the buckets and run to the corral area while shouting to get their attention.  It mostly worked.  My 48 year old back was not amused however.

It went out.

And not on a date.  I've been in pain, on drugs, and in bed (not as much as I should have been).  This happens from time to time.  Dad Groundhog had it.  Our backs would go out the same way for several days at a time.  You can pop it right back in but the trauma is done and it tends to go in and out for a few days until it settles down.  Fun times.  I walk like a neanderthal.

Maybe I've learned my lesson?  Probably not...

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Looks Like It's Lambing Time

I got another mama giving birth right now.  I'm hoping it's twins because unfortunately the first one didn't make it.  This was a BIG mama so maybe we'll get more than one.  Another one is acting a bit funny this evening so it may be her turn next.  The little white lamb has discovered the joy of running and jumping.  It looks like it's having quite the time of it out there.  The black belly's are being anti social for now.  More lamb news to follow...

Sunday, March 10, 2013

Time Change!

Is evil...

I hate it...

It should stop...

And never start again...