Goat Barn Fever

 It's been a dry February, with little new snow
but cold enough during the first half of the month
to maintain a substantial snow pack.
Occasionally a frozen mist would combine with overcast skies to create a monochromatic landscape.
Glowing sunrises warmed up the palette of some mornings
even when the air temperature was well below zero. 
The gentlemen come outside no matter how cold it gets.
They keep each other warm
especially when Mr. T chases Niblet around their yard.
The ladies prefer to stay indoors on arctic days
which leads to a caprine version of cabin fever.
We hide the axes when Lassi gets that certain look in her eye.
On nicer days they enjoy venturing outside, too.
Dream and Alba hobble cautiously along the icy driveway
while Kona and Lassi scamper madly up and down, disappointed only that there are no scissors to carry in their mouths.
Then a mid-month thaw sent temperatures soaring
with a record high of 52 degrees on February 16.
Grassy patches emerged near the house
for the first time since November
although the south meadow remains blanketed
and deer are still confined to trails across the hard-going west meadow.
The girls take advantage of the newly bared ground
to munch on twigs
tree bark
a wooden bench
and the hammock.
Kona checks out the remaining snow banks.
Other critters emerge in the warm weather, including gray squirrels (many of whom in our neighborhood are black).
Mouse tracks along the garage in a dusting of snow are followed by kitty tracks.

The girls grow broader abeam as their delivery dates near (although Dream is the broadest of all and she's not pregnant).

Mr. T awaits the arrival of his latest batch of youngsters with the pride of an NBA all-star.

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