This will be a bit of a short update since I posted one earlier this week. The kids are still discovering all of the toys they got for Christmas. One of my favorite finds were these vintage Little People toys I found on eBay. We already had the barn and house, but didn’t have any animals, people or furniture. Both kids have had a ball playing with them. They are the perfect size for Cowgirl, but even Farmboy has been using his imagination and coming up with elaborate scenarios for them. I love these Little People so much more than the newer version. Maybe it’s because they are what I grew up with, but they’re so simple and versatile. Any of the people can fit in the furniture or vehicles, and their simplicity leaves more room for imaginative play. Plus, no lights, minimal sounds and no batteries.
I spent a lot of time in the garden this week. I have a bad habit of buying plants, then not getting them transplanted in a timely manner because the beds aren’t ready. While I still had some of that this time, I got several beds ready at once so I have plenty of room for new plants. I’m trying a no-till, soil building method I learned from a Back to Eden video. I’ll post more about it a little later. For mulch, I’m using cow hay because it’s cheap and breaks down easily. Farmboy found this mulch very comfortable and was trying to nap while I gardened.
The dogs have also found my new mulch very comfortable. The good news is they aren’t rolling in or eating the manure and compost I put down, the bad news is I don’t want them laying on my plants.
We still have four piglets on the feed bill, two of them are for sale and we’re keeping the other two. They’re only 8 weeks old, but already almost too big to pick up, so we decided to take the opportunity to get good weights for them. I wish I could say we have a nice scale to weight the piglets, but that’s not quite the case. We placed a piece of plywood on the ground and stacked a coupled concrete blocks on top. We place our digital bathroom scale on the blocks, then weighed Hubby as our tare weight. He would then catch a piglet and we would subtract his weight from the weight with the piglet. Then I disinfected my bathroom scale.
“Spot” is showing great progress. I estimated his weight to be around 20 lbs when he had his surgery last month. He now weighs 43 lbs.
I hadn’t planned to keep any piglets from this litter. First of all, we are overflowing with pork, but I wouldn’t feel right selling Spot to someone else since I don’t know how his hernia will effect his rate of growth. Yes, he will eventually go in the freezer, but we may sell the pork. And I really didn’t plan on keeping any for breeding since I already have two sows and I don’t keep boars. I really thought this girl would go to a show home, but no one seemed to want her. She’s turned out to be such a nice piglet, I’ve decided to keep her for breeding instead. I really need to get a hog barn built for all of these pigs. Hubby has dubbed her “Red Bull” because she looks like a red bulldog. She weighed in at a hefty 62 lbs. Does Hubby look like he’s straining?
This boy is one of the ones we have for sale. He is going to make an excellent meat hog. He weighed in at 57 lbs.
This girl weighed 51 lbs. Don’t let her lower weight fool you, she’s a good sized piglet. Most of the local piglets I’ve seen this age only weigh 35-40 lbs. She has good width and really nice hams. She’ll be good for breeding or meat. She’s also for sale.
We’re going to keep free feeding everyone until they’re a couple hundred pounds, then start rationing their feed to finish them. Hopefully the pink piglets will sell soon; otherwise, we may just feed them out and sell them as BBQ pigs or sell the pork.