Home > Dispatches > Daily Dispatches 2017 >Daily Dispatch #175

June 28, 2017: The Routine

The routine around here varies slightly in accordance with the seasons. Some tasks remain the same; however, winter and summer tasks differ. For instance, all the animals must be fed, every day, twice a day. We store the horse hay in three shelters. Horses must also be watered. In the summer we get the water from one of two 350 gallon tanks, which are on the outside of the pen and collect rain water from the barn roof.

In the winter we get the water from the well. We turn on the generator, which activates the well pump. We fill four gallon horse supplement containers in the kitchen addition sink, and pour the water into enamel pots that sit on the woodstove. We

haul the hot water to down the horse pen, using a sled, and from there fill three insulated buckets. Obviously, the winter watering routine takes more time than does the summer watering routine.

The winter manure management process also takes more time than does the summer manure management process. In the dead of winter we use the plastic sled and haul the poop uphill, then dump it in the depression behind the hoop house. In the summer we use a cart and buckets and haul the manure to the compost station. We also put the buckets aside for gardeners, who take them, empty them elsewhere, and return them.

We also clean up behind the chickens, goats, and dogs; however, this routine seldom varies. I generally keep all the pens clean so flies aren’t a problem. This morning, when I was milking, I noticed a few flies buzzing around, so today I am going to clean the chicken and goat pens and haul the waste down to the compost facility. I will then put some of the loose hay in their pens. This is hay that I gathered up when I cleaned out the outer hay shed a few weeks ago. I hope to get this done before Pete turns the compost with the tractor. In the winter there are no weeds. In the summer we weed and add these greens to the compost heap.

Add now, to the summer routine, milking Stormy the goat. Suzi, who sold us Stormy, said that her production will taper off come winter. This is going to work well for us because milking will then remain a summer activity. I really do not relish having to go out in subzero weather and have to do this task.

Add making cheese and yogurt to the summer routine, as well as dipnetting for salmon and collecting berries.

Add to the above, winter and summer, horseback riding. With all we have going on, we have to work at keeping this a priority. Pete is getting ready to vary his routine – he’s going on a Back Country Horsemen of Alaska pack trip on Friday. I am going to stay put and adhere to summer routine.

Next: 176. 6/29/17: Falling Down and Getting Back Up

Horse Care Home About Us Dispatches Trips Alys's Articles