DIY Calf bottle holder

With our 4 calves now needing to be bottle-fed 4 times a day, it was high time to make a bottle holder. They are getting stronger and much more rambunctious during their feeding times. With all their head-butts and jerks on the nipples, it is getting harder and harder to keep the bottle under control and in hand while they slurp away. So, I decided it was time do a little homestead “automation”. Basically, a wooded frame that I cobbled together that will hold the bottles even when the calves are getting a little excited during their feeding. So far it’s working really well and has made feeding these little calves so much easier. I didn’t use any plans but just kind of slapped it together with material I had lying around. We are still getting in with them when they feed (the trust and reliance that they develop with us when they are young will make them much easier to handle when they out-weigh us by X-number of times) but it’s nice not to have to wrestle a bottle every time they need to eat.

Spring Bee Hive Maintenance

One item on our spring time to do list was check on the health of our bee hive. We had let proper care and concern for it slip away a little bit in the fall (we never took the honey super off, tapped it late) and were a little concerned as to what we might find now that spring is here. To our relief, the bees have done well over the winter in spite of our lack of proper care. A few days ago we headed out and did some required maintenance (clean the dead bees out, scrape out the mites etc…) and also tried to start another hive. We’ll see how that goes, but at least the one we have did well over the winter and the bees seem quite happy and content.

Twins!

Yesterday morning we woke up to the awesome surprise of two freshly born baby goats. Twins! Both boys and both really healthy and really cute. I never realized how tiny goats are when they are born. And, working with our baby cows so much lately makes these little goats seam almost miniature.

They look different but are indeed twins.
They look different but are indeed twins.
A brown kid with super tiny ears.
A brown kid with super tiny ears.
A white/blonde kid with super floppy ears.
A white/blonde kid with super floppy ears.

Now I think it’s time to go get some baby pyjamas. Cause that’s a thing you do with baby goats:)

Whatever it takes

We have 4 little calves running around on the homestead now, and these are just little guys. Bottle feeders that we picked up from a local feedlot. Originally we started with 5, but 3 days ago we lost one. Kind stinks but I guess that how it goes with these types of situations. Sometimes you can do everything in your power, and it just doesn’t work out.

We are at the same point again with Coby’s little calf, Sadie. She was taking the bottle really well, but has now been weakened by Scours, or diarrhea. We are now having to stomach tube her to make sure she gets her nutrients. Both the milk replacer and an electrolyte solution. It’s a pain, but, sometimes that what’s involved when you want to raise your own meat. I could only imagine what it would be like to have 40 or 50 or more calves at one time.

 

Skating with the Calgary Flames

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Photo Credit: Bret Kenworthy

This past Thursday evening was a huge night for our oldest Coby. He as the Calgary Flames ScotiaBank Skater. Thank  you so much to the Flames, ScotiaBank and all the organizations and people that make things like this possible. It is really a special opportunity.

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Photo Credit: Bret Kenworthy

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Cows and Computers

After the last two days of technical difficulty, I’ve had enough. I picked up a new computer and, we bought 5 little calves! Yesterday was a super busy day and super exciting! Now with bottle feeding these little guys, we’re going to be even busier for the next while.

Two and a half hours of video footage…gone.

This happened today. What a total flop, and so, so frustrating.

And this is a little video from last week for the boys school presentation.

Hockey in the off-season

Well, regular season might be over, but that doesn’t mean there is no hockey to be had. Actually, it’s pretty much as easy as pie to play year ’round, or to have your kids play year ’round. As Alan Jackson once said, “It just takes money.”

Some people still think that having your kids in spring hockey or summer hockey means that their kid is somehow a better player than “other” kids from his/her team. Nope. Not true. Not anymore. Now, anyone can pretty much make any off-season team if their parents are willing to fork out the cash to make it happen.

We take a different approach to the game. I want to give my kids all the help they can get when they are playing something they love so much. So during the regular season, we make sure they’re at every practice, have good performing and safe equipment, and we even get them into specialty sessions, camps and a little one on one training. But pretty much only during the regular season. Once hockey is over, it’s okay for it to be over for a while. Grass is turning green, the temperature is warming up and the days are getting longer. There are so many things that can be done outside now, and why waste this nice weather stuck in an arena if you don’t have to be. Okay, that sounds different than how I probably mean it. I love hockey. The game, the lifestyle, all of it. But, with anything that we really enjoy being a part of, it’s good to sometimes take a break. A little stroll in another direction for a while.

I’m looking forward to that part of the year right now. But, our one last kick at the cat is a fun little 3 on 3 tournament that is hosted by the Wheatland Athletics Association. It’s a great time (a little disorganized on the minor level of who get’s which dressing room etc…) and all in all a pretty fun weekend.

Both boys finished their semi-final games on the winning side and are going into Sunday playing for the tournament banner. Coby for PeeWee and Isaiah for Atom.

It’s really nice (and rare) that both boys play at the same arena, and even nicer that all games are here in Strathmore. Kind of makes for a nice little hockey wind-up weekend.

And, here’s the second video in the 30 day video challenge. It’s a vlog of yesterday’s hockey-centric activities.