The calendar said summer
but for a spell the thermometer suggested otherwise; six days into the season the furnace fired up at MeadowWild on a particularly cold, rainy morning
and Dustin snoozed the day away in his favorite bed next to the heating vent.
A storm shortly before the official turn of the season washed away much of our area.
We got over 6 inches of rain (the power went out for several hours, so our Accurite Weather Station lost track of the exact total)
and, in addition to impressive lightning and thunder throughout the night, the Weather Radio jolted us awake every few minutes with various new alerts.
All that rain, supplemented now by more seasonal temperatures,
has turned the area into a lush extension of the Emerald Isle
making for delightful walks around the neighborhood
although the back woods and meadows are growing too thick and high to tramp through, and frequent lawn-mowing is losing its appeal.
Nearby Northern Harvest Farm keeps us supplied with gorgeous fresh produce
and Barb turned part of this year’s bumper rhubarb crop into a luscious tort (her mom’s recipe, minus the secret ingredient [marshmallow creme]).
MeadowWild continues to serve as Deer Central Station;
they scamper through the back woods and meadow
and boldly waltz by the house at all hours.
A doe and her fawn regularly nap under the clothesline and help themselves to the salad bar.
A different kind of visitor showed up on the front doormat
presumably to wipe his feet before coming into the house.
Summer is goat show season
and not just in Mayberry.
Barb traveled to the Minnesota Dairy Goat Assoc show in Marshall, MN
to cheer on Team McCann Farm.
She also supplied gorgeous medallions (commissioned from Buck Run Pottery) that were awarded as prizes.
Then it was time to host Linear Appraisal.
The girls received spiffy summer makeovers
before being professionally evaluated on a variety of traits (information valuable for genetic improvement in the herd).
The MeadowWild crew did very well, with Cheeky, Mojo and Kuiper earning particularly high scores.
It was a real challenge to get 225-pound Mojo to stand still enough for measurements and evaluation, but a bribe of pretzels -- and lots of help from friends -- did the trick.
As the old proverb insists, it takes a village to wrangle a buck.
Friend Laura kindly volunteered to milk Kuiper and Cheeky
so that Barb could listen and observe
as the visiting herds were evaluated.
Matriculations continued during June. Her barn-mates turned out
for a fond farewell to Tzilla ("Godzilla" when she's naughty)
as she headed off to her wonderful new home in Foley, MN
where her new goat moms report that she is flourishing
(photo courtesy of Tracy and Marlene)
Tzugamushi found a new home earlier, leaving Tzippa as the last remaining member
of the trio that spent a few days in our bathtub after mom Cheeky decided she wasn't cut out for this parenting thing anymore. Barb bottle-fed the triplets into strong, healthy young porkers.
Then Tzimmes boarded the Goatmobile for a trip to New Auburn, WI -- and reunion with her siblings.
Tzimmes is one of Cheeky's 2017 triplets. When Cheeky rejected the buckling Doodh
McKinsey generously adopted him and his sister Tzini, bottle feeding them and giving them a home at her flourishing dairy farm.
Doodh is now a handsome big guy
and Tzini a gorgeous, healthy, productive member of a well cared for herd.
Does Tzimmes now hang out with her wombmate Tzini? Of course not; she prefers to socialize with their sister Tzarina (Reenie), born to Cheeky and Mojo in 2015.
Barb caught up with other MeadowWild alumnae now members of McKinsey's herd
Now that he's a strapping young teenager, Boychick has moved to the Gentlemen's Club
joining Draco and Polaris
for tutoring by Mojo.
Mojo is an indulgent authority, playing with the youngsters
and tolerating abuse -- at least until grain time twice a day and the boys try to muscle in on his feeder
whereupon he roars like Chewbaca
and bonks them out of the way with his massive head.
Though they may not realize it, the three boys are auditioning for first prize, the position of long-term Mojo companion
(in lieu of the El Dorado); second and third prizes are the same.
On Father's Day, Mojo waited in vain for that box of fine Cuban cigars and bottle of Henri IV Dudognon Heritage Cognac Grande Champagne he was expecting from his progeny scattered throughout the land.
Instead, he got a summer haircut
which will make more bearable the hot, humid weather now descending on us.
Naturalist Larry Weber says that some birds who lost nests in the earlier storms are rebuilding now; those nests will probably be lined with Mojo hair.
And to close out this final week of June: the Free Range Film Festival --
two days of quirky new films screened in our friends’ barn in nearby Wrenshall