Welcome to Painted Hand Farm

Painted Hand Farm is a 20 acre Civil War era farm located in Cumberland county, Pennsylvania. We raise meat goats, veal calves, turkeys and organic vegetables using humane and sustainable agricultural practices.

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Friday, January 16, 2009

Oh, does this ever suck!

It's cold...really, really freaking cold and it's going to get colder. The wind is blowing which makes it suck even more. If I don't keep enough of my face covered when I'm out doing chores, I get an "ice cream" headache. But if I put a scarf up over my nose, my glasses fog up and then the condensation freezes. One of the only gadgets that's worked so far is a knitted ski mask that was made by my Grandma Meyers years and years ago that I found in a basket of her knitting stuff. The eye hole is too small for my glasses to fit comfortably, though.

Santa had promised me a new bucket, hydraulic hoses and a block heater for my diesel tractor after he got done with the holidays, but unless his reindeer are going to tow it over to his workshop, it's not moving anywhere until the weather warms (hence, the block heater). He's also going to add more weight to my rear end because it's too light. HA! Who would have ever guessed they'd hear me say that. I wonder about the comfort of my animals, but they seem only mildly annoyed. The goats stay in their huts a little longer in the morning. I've decided not to even begin feeding until they emerge from their shelters. The calves, cows and horses are oblivious with their dense, fluffy coats. And the Great Pyrenees are in their element, stretching about lazily on the round bale leftovers in the glaring winter sun.

In order to provide constant access to water, I've consolidated some of the critters because cracking ice sucks. Andy the Belgian now gets to hang with the goats during the day when his water trough became unbearable to crack this morning. The gate has been opened between two sets of bull calves so they can share one heated water tank although we have to separate them come milk feeding time. Emma & Gray have three weaned calves in with them and they are all in a pile sharing their body heat come morning. There's one calf in the barn and he's sharing a bunk with one of our purebred bucks who got a little run-down after breeding season. Across the isle are the young does from last year who can't be out in the main doe herd because they are too young to breed. Next to them is the rehab wing currently occupied by an elderly doe (one of the original herd) who has been a little wobbly. She got a roommate today when I saw on of my favorite yearling does thrashed by an older doe.

The old witch caught the younger goat's leg between her horns and proceeded to toss her head as the smaller doe screamed in agony. I ran to intervene, but the yearling refused to put any weight on the leg. Nothing like an 80-pound neck-warmer for a trek across the farm.
Paging Doctor Eric..... The barn kitties are snug in a new load of hay and the old kitties have decided that using a litter box is better than having to go outside under the picnic table like everyone else. And the Cocker, well, as usual, she just craps on the rug.


  1. Hi Sandy!
    Yep - I want to tell all those folks who think we lead such a romantic, back to land, fun life, "Visit now"!! Along with the cold making everyone eat twice as much to stop shivering, the poops are turning to rock piles before they hit the ground. I have to scoop them as best I can since they are little ankle twisters.

    I just have the disabled cat peeing in the house.

    Hang in there!!

  2. Anonymous10:49 PM

    Now, that's funny and real life farming.