Who's that Dustin is chatting with through the front window screen?
It's a cute little toad come to share the neighborhood gossip.
And this fella is hanging out not far away in a rain barrel. It's been perfect weather for amphibians;
our rain gauge shows 7.87 inches for August, well above average.
The rain fostered luxuriant vegetation for the goats to browse on
but made second crop haying very difficult.
It just won't stop raining long enough to cut, dry and bale the hay.
Touches of autumn red already appear on the front oak tree
and in the neighboring woods.
To prepare for Linear Appraisal (Aug 12), the girls got salon treatments
and the guys had to have their ears re-tattooed, leaving green ink stains on their heads
and even more on Barb's hands.
Mojo objected so strenuously to the painful process that he broke the milk stand
snapping off a brace that was keeping him in place.
On the day before Linear Appraisal, Brian (who hosted at his farm) kindly picked up Mojo and Chill for the trip to Milaca
while Cheeky and Kuiper followed the next day in the Goatmobile.
Fern greeted Barb by snacking on her blouse.
Brian also did MeadowWild Farm a big favor by wrangling the two strong and rambunctious bucks while they were being appraised.
The herd scored very well. Barb was especially delighted when Cheeky improved her rating significantly over previous years.
Mojo stayed on for an extended visit at the McCann Farm, where he will see way more action than he's accustomed to in our smaller herd. Here he welcomes a visit from Barb with some vigorous nuzzling.
At the end of the month Barb and good friend Janet headed off in the Goatmobile for a visit to the sister herd at Summer Solstice Farms in Indiana and then picked up a real treasure at Regel Katan Farm in Ohio: A Borealis (called Alice).
All three travelers survived the long trek north
and Alice adjusted to her new home
while the curious Welcome Wagon looked on.
Our deepest thanks to guest milkers Rick
Laura and Adam for making the trip possible. (Sorry, Adam; in all the excitement, we neglected to get a photo of you caring for the girls.)
We mentioned last month Larry Weber's Spiders of the North Woods. We've just received a presentation copy of his new book, Web Watching: A Guide to Webs and the Spiders That Make Them. Thanks, Larry!
Next up on the day before Labor Day: the State Fair.
As usual, Barb will cheer on the McCann Farm at the Alpine Goat Show
While Steve breakfasts on a Sonoran Sausage (ONE.BAD.DOG: Tex-Mex sausage stuffed with pepper jack cheese, wrapped in bacon, baked, and served on a cornmeal-dusted bun with fresh corn salsa and a drizzle of avocado ranch sauce)
with mini-donuts for dessert
all washed down with Dill Pickle Beer (Dry hopped with fresh dill horseradish and spices, this light, American-style ale from Barley John’s Brewery in New Richmond, WI is a must drink for any pickle lover. It comes garnished with a dill pickle and Havarti dill cheese).