Going on vacation can be wonderful and an event to look forward to, but when you own a small farm the process becomes more complicated. You cannot just pack up and go. Arrangements need to be made for the care of your property and animals. It can be surprisingly difficult to find the special person or people to feed, water, move, and milk a variety of animals.
We have not been away from the farm for more than two nights in years, but we’re going for a little longer vacation in two weeks. My husband’s Aunt Lori has rented a resort for July 14th through the 21st and has invited us to spend the week with the whole family. Although we won’t be able to spend the whole week we’re very excited to get away from home for awhile.
To make this happen we have to find a few willing farm sitters and accomplish of a few lingering chores to make our sitters’ lives easier. Every season has different challenges and with July comes the heat. My sister, Sondra, and our neighbor, Bridget, will be doing chores twice a day for us but I worry about watering the animals when it is very hot. Especially the pigs. Pigs are wasteful with their water because they like to roll in the mud to cool off when they are hot. Pigs don’t sweat so they have to find different ways to stay cool, mug rolling is the preferred method. After they dump their water dish to make mud their drinking water is then gone.
A list of chores to be completed before we leave:
- Plumb in drinking cup for pigs. This way they have continuous water to drink but not to waste. Our lovely chore ladies can throw a bucket of water in for them twice a day to roll in.
- Weed whip the fence line. Although Jack, our horse, does not test he fence our goats are constantly testing it. We want the fences working at high voltage so animals aren’t wandering far and wide.
- Till the garden. Weeds seem to grow twice as fast as the vegetables. To keep them down until we get back Trenton is going to till the rows before we leave.
I’m planning on having our chore ladies come over to practice. Bridget has never milked a goat before so it should be fun for her! We are only milking Fauna once a day. She still has a kid with her so if she is not milked completely it is okay, the kid will finish her off but unfortunantly she is not the most patient goat when it comes to milking.
I’m excited to head out for a few days. Planning to read, write, and knit in between chasing children around!