Duke and I enjoyed some time out in the sun, on my parents’ lush green grass.
Dukie turned five years old in May. I bought him as a birthday present for Ed shortly after we got married.
Since we lived on the farm then, Dukie formed a very strong bond with my family. They’ve always been animal lovers, and my dogs have always been treated like part of the family. Duke especially enjoyed getting spoiled by my dad.
When we moved off the farm, we decided to leave Dukie there. He is best friends with Eddie, my parents’ Old English Sheepdog. He also goes to work with my dad every day, and enjoys running free on the farm.
It was hard to leave Dukie behind, but we still get to see him often, and I know that he’s happy. Just look at his face!
Sometimes being a good doggie parent means doing what’s best for him, even if it makes me sad. I just couldn’t take a farm dog off the farm.
While my mom’s in Washington D.C. for a math teacher’s conference, we got to have my dad, brothers, and Duke over for supper last night. When I saw Dukie sprawled out on the floor, I grabbed my camera and got right down with him. It was so cute because his eyes told me exactly what he was thinking. In both my and Ed’s families, the dogs talk. They have their own voices, and they say what’s on their mind. Here are some examples…
Are you going to pet me? Oh, you have the camera again. Great! Now I’ll be on the blob! (He calls the blog a blob.)
Maybe if I just ignore her she’ll go away.
This is getting annoying! Do I have to get up and walk away?
Maybe I’ll just go to sleep instead. Then he took in a breath and let out a big sigh. Dukie does that sometimes when he’s tired or tired of being bothered.
Do your dogs talk to you?
Last night, while going out to celebrate my dad’s birthday, we got a call from my uncle that the neighbor’s new cows were out and grazing in our hayfield. He and the neighbor’s kids tried to catch them, but they’re not tame and kept running away. When we got home, my dad and brothers went out to see if they could find the cows in the dark. They were by the pond, in the middle of the farm, so we figured they’d be safe for the night. Our biggest concern was that they’d run into the road and get hit by a car, hurting themselves and the people in the car. When Ed and I left, we saw them by the road so I called to let my parents know. They managed to scare the cows back away from the busy road and into the orchard, where they slept all night and this morning.
Thanks to the zoom on my camera, I was able to get a good shot of them through the apple trees. Then Nathaniel convinced me to move closer…
We went to the end of the row they were in, with them obviously watching us the whole time. I loved the look of the red herefords on the green grass, with yellow and purple wildflowers blooming in the apple orchard.
When one of them got up, we decided that was enough pictures since we didn’t know where they’d go, and since the neighbors would be coming over to get them soon.
While there, I couldn’t help but take pictures of my other favorite animals. Annabelle is doing well, eating constantly and getting bigger. She doesn’t like being told what to do, which is very different since our Percheron team is so obedient. However, they were trained as draft horses and she was just raised in a pasture, so she’s used to doing her own thing. She gets lots of visitors who come to pet her and take pictures, but unless they bring her snacks she’s not interested. She gobbles up the carrots and apples then goes right back to grazing.
Duke sits patiently, watching my dad work on the farm market.
As I was getting in the car to leave, I glimpsed Eddie through the split rail fence and just had to take this photo. I think it’s my favorite from the whole morning.
On this chilly, windy afternoon, I stopped by to visit my favorite animals on the farm.
Dukie loves snow. He rolls all around in it until he’s covered. Here, he’s licking snow off his little black nose.
Sorry, Annabelle, that playhouse is for the goats.
Eddie was barking at me in this picture.
Annabelle strolls through the petting zoo, looking for little bits of grass to eat.
Dukie got tired out and decided to lie down.
Annabelle walks by the big mulch pile that the goats love to climb on.
There’s a big snowstorm here today. Ed and I both have the day off work, and over six inches of snow fell by the time we woke up this morning. It’s predicted that we’ll get a foot total. I went out this morning to shovel the front walkway, and my dad and Dukie came to plow our driveway.
It’s hard to tell how much snow has fallen, since it’s been so windy and there are big drifts along with bare patches. Inside, the fire is going, I’ve got a roast in the slow cooker, and I’m sitting under blankets relaxing while Ed works on the pantry cabinets in the garage. I’m hoping this is our last snowstorm of the season, but we’re making the most of our unexpected day off.
Filed under Home, Outside
By the time I got to the farm this morning, my dad and brother had already brushed her and taken her for a walk around the farm to meet the other animals. Fortunately, Nathaniel took a break from the sap house to take her out again so I could get some photos!
Annabelle in her new home.
Annabelle with Nate. Don’t be fooled about her size, Nate’s 6’5″, so you can imagine how big she is!
Annabelle poses in front of Eddie and the excavator.
Annabelle visits with Bill and Vinny. They seemed to get along and she didn’t want to leave them. She’s also bigger than they are.
Annabelle with me. For reference, I’m 5’7″.
Taking a walk back to her barn. Look at that long tail!
Duke enjoyed visiting with Annabelle, and even licked her face. I think they’re friends already.
Update: Ed and I went back to see Annabelle late this afternoon. Here are some more pictures.
Duke, Annabelle and Dad.
We buried Eddie in hay. No wonder he’s always so grumpy.
The cupola on the roof of the stand.
You can see even more pictures of Annabelle at flickr.