Friday, January 30, 2009

Still No Power

Things finally started to thaw out today around here. There are still tons of streets closed because of trees down and still tons of people without power. All the schools are closed including the University because of no power and downed trees. My neighbor talked to the power company today and they told him it would be 1-3 weeks before we had power. So that sucks. We transported all our freezer and refrigerator stuff to our friends' who we are staying with freezer and refrigerator so we would not lose it all. I wanted to say a special thanks to everyone who has called and offered help and to let Margo and I come stay with you. You may be sorry you offered because we may be calling you when our current house hosts get tired of us. Several guys have called and offered to come help us clean up on the farm. So, we are having a clean up day on the farm tomorrow. Margo and I will be out there all day working on cleaning up trees and stuff. If anyone is bored, come on out and we will put you to work. We will have at least 2 chainsaws going. I am sad about losing so many trees. I had cleared a good portion of our land to get grass growing and help it look nice and I left all the trees I really liked and now they are mostly destroyed. I guess that is all I have for an update today on ice storm 2009.

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Pics From the War Zone

We still don't have power (of course). We are staying with some awesome friends (Adam and Sarah) who have power and internet. We go home after work and work on stuff out on the farm and then come to town at night and spend the night.

This is shed and barn

A limb on the back yard fence, this one got within a couple feet of the house. I worked for a few hours today getting our fences back to at least where they would hold in the animals, there is going to be a lot of repair to the fences.

This is the the corral by the barn, you can see a goat under the tree

This is an area I cleared out last year between us and our neighbors to plant grass, normally you could see our house looking this way

This is another area on the far side of the house that I cleared out last year and was working on planting grass this year, notice some trees are bent completely over, some are broke at the top, and some are uprooted.

Our county road.

This is me trying to stay upright on the ice while carrying a chainsaw (sounds safe doesn't it), it took me about 2-3 hours to clear our 1 mile of county road up to the highway.

This is a shot of the state highway that leads to the interstate, it was mostly one lane in and out of trees for the 7 miles. We drove over 4 downed power lines along the way.

Another shot of the highway

No Words

We are alive. I can think of no word that can express how bad things are here in Northwest Arkansas after the ice storm. This post is just to let all of you who don't live around here know that we are okay and it is really bad here. Hardly anyone has power here, the latest report said an estimated 150,000 don't have power just here in NWA. I am at work right now and we have power today here at the hospital (there wasn't power yesterday) and I have internet here at work which is nice. Our power went out on Tuesday night and by my best estimate it will be weeks before we have power. The people in town were told it would be the weekend before they might have power. This area got between 1.5 and 3 inches of ice. There are no trees left untouched, I would say 60-70% of my trees on the farm are completely destroyed. My fences are destroyed, there are limbs on all our buildings, our house had 3 limbs hit it during the night. It was really scary. Limbs and trees were breaking constantly yesterday. The good news is that so far all of our buildings at the farm are intact, the falling limbs have not caused major damage. We did have one baby goat die. I cleared our mile of county road yesterday morning and it took me around 3 hours to get a car path to the highway, there are two power lines down just on our county road. Last night we fed the animals and then we came into town before it got dark and stayed with some friends who had their power back on. The state highway between our county road and the interstate is one lane only because there are trees covering a lot of the road. I drove over 4 downed power lines on the highway. It basically looks like a tornado came through but instead of just a limited path, it took out all of Northwest Arkansas. Apparently, last night Obama declared Arkansas a Federal Disaster Area so hopefully that will help get some relief here. I will try to post pictures when I can. The Farm of Hale has changed. Please pray for all of us here, it is really bad.

Friday, January 23, 2009

Everyone's Favorite

Sorry I have not been posting much lately, not a lot is going on around here. People have been asking for more pictures of the baby goats. They are all 2-3 weeks old now and they are growing like crazy. They are being very playful at this stage which is fun. We have had lots of people come out to see them and they have been a big hit with everyone. We have one baby goat in particular that seems to be the overall favorite. It is our little brown one that I have talked about before that has the ears that stick out. It's mom has smaller ears than our other goats but they don't stick out like this baby goat's does. It just got the freak ear genes. Margo calls it our "special" goat, and one of our friends, Ashley, nicknamed it Yoda. I kind of wish it was a girl so we could keep it around but since it is a boy and won't do us any good to keep it, we will have to part with it in a few months. Here is a picture of it from today.

It's ears are like this all the time. It is even better when he runs because then his ears go straight up like a rabbit. That is his brother next to him and that one's ears are more like their mom's.

In other big news Margo's brother and sister-in-law had their baby January 15th. Her name is Ella and she weighed 10 pounds 10 ounces which I am told is very large. The only picture I have of her I took with my cell phone in the hospital the day she was born. It is not super high quality since it is from my phone but I think it is a nice picture.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Baby It's Cold Outside

As I am typing this it is 11 degrees outside with a wind chill of 3, which is pretty cold for around here. We decided to put up a couple of heat lamps for the baby goats tonight. We usually only provide heat lamps for the baby goats at night for the first day or two after they are born and only if it is cold outside. After the first couple days of being alive they can withstand pretty much any cold weather that we have around here, but it is extra cold tonight. We figured as long as we have the heat lamps and because it is unusually cold tonight we might as well turn them on for the little ones. Margo went down to check on them a few minutes ago to see if they were taking advantage of the heat lamps and almost all of them were snuggled up together under the lights. It made for a cute picture (you don't hear me us the word cute very often, so enjoy it).

Sunday, January 11, 2009


We had two more baby goats yesterday and two this morning. This brings our total up to 11. We have one more goat that has not had babies but she will probably not have hers for another month or so. We started out good having equal numbers of girls and boys but these last four were all boys. So we have 4 girls and 7 boys, sounds like a future barbecue to me. We got some action photos of the goat having her babies last night, so they are a little graphic.

Here is the goat starting to have the second baby, those are little feet sticking out.

Here is the baby freshly out, still mostly in it's fluid sack

Here is mama cleaning it up, and that is it's brother in the background

This is one of the boys born today while we were at church

Here is other brother that was born today. He was our biggest baby. We averaged around 6 pounds for most of the babies. He weighed in at a hefty 9.1 pounds.

We had several friends and some of my co-workers and their families come out this weekend to see the babies.

This is one of my co-workers, Cathy, holding one of the babies born last night. For those of you who know our goats, this is Crazy's baby. Crazy has smaller ears that stick out a little. Well, this poor baby got the ear stick out gene and her ears are longer, it makes her look a little "special"

This is some friends of ours daughter, Sophie

Thursday, January 08, 2009

When it rains, it pours....goats

Holy baby goats. We are growing like crazy. We have two goats that I thought were going to be our first goats to have babies but they weren't. I thought for sure these two were going to have them today because they are looking close (if you know what I mean). But they didn't, it turns out they are going to be almost the last ones to have theirs, because three(yes three) more goats had babies today. Two of them were a complete surprise because we thought they were another couple weeks off. The first one we discovered that had babies today was one of our goats we have had since we moved out here (thanks Trav). She had two babies that might be the cutest babies ever. They were all dry and up nursing and walking around with no problems when we got home. We took them and put them in the barn with their mom and then Margo went to feed hay to the rest of the goats and cow and I went to go cut some wood. Margo came running back from the hay feeder to tell me we had a surprise. One of our other goats we weren't expecting to have babies yet had two babies. We have a set of white twin nanny goats we got last year that this is their first year to have babies and it was one of those that had the babies. I thought it was crazy not only that she had them this soon but also that she had two babies. Usually the first year goats only have one baby, and she was not that big either. When we went over there to catch them we noticed that both of the twin nannies were bleating like they were calling for their baby. And then it hit us....the pregnant twins had their babies on the same day. How crazy is that. They each had one baby and we had no idea which one went with which goat because the twins look a lot alike and the babies looked a lot alike and they were all together and the babies weren't for sure who they belonged to, they were going to both mamas. It was very confusing. We took them over to the barn and just had to watch them until we saw which baby nursed which mom and then we separated them into separate stalls. We will make them stay separate for a few days so they can all get figured out who belongs to who. I just hope we got it right. We now have 7 baby goats total and I am expecting we are going to have 5 more. So, I need all of you people out there to help. I need you all to come out and pet and play with the baby goats. The more they are handled by many different people now the more tame they will be when they grow up and I want them pretty tame. Please come help. I am sure you are all saying, get on with it, we want to see pictures. Well here you go.

Here are the twins that were born today, they are super cute. The boy is chocolate brown with one white foot and a white place on his head and the girl is mostly white with brown splotches.

Here is one of the twins' baby. It is a male

Here is the other one's baby, it is a female

Wednesday, January 07, 2009

The Brother

I am finally getting around to putting up some pictures of the brother to the little female goat we had in the house the other day. The brother did not have any issues after being born and is doing great. By the way we were able to leave the little female with her mom and brother last night in the barn (with a heat lamp) and all day today. She is doing just fine so far, maybe a little behind her brother but I think she will catch up. Here are some pics.

Here is the brother

And here they are together

Monday, January 05, 2009


Well, we had more baby goats born today. It was kind of a surprise. We knew this goat was getting close but thought two other goats were going to have their's first. There is a story to go along with these though, one about did not make it. One of the problems with having baby goats at this time of year is if it is really cold the babies can get hypothermic quick, especially since they come out all wet. It is especially true for the first baby to come out with twins because the mama does not work on drying it off until she gets the other one out and that few minutes makes a big difference on a 5 pound wet baby goat when it is 35 degrees outside. Back to the story of these babies. When we got home I went and checked on them and one of the baby goats was standing next to the mom and the other one was laying all sprawled out not moving. I thought it was dead at first but when I got up close to it, it let out a really faint sound and then I saw it's eye move a little. I picked it up and it was freezing cold and a little stiff and could not move. I ran it into the house and we dried it off good and put it in a plastic bag up to it's head and put it in the bag in some really warm water to try and get it warmed up. After several minutes of that we took it out and rubbed it really good with a towel to try and get it's blood pumping and we set it in front of a heater. It starting to perk up a little and make more movements and a little noise. I went out and milked it's mama a little and squirted some milk in it's mouth and it swallowed it which was good. We kept warming it up for an hour or two and it finally nursed from a bottle with a nipple on it. After a while we took it down to the mama and let it nurse from the mom, which it did, which was a really good sign. We brought it back in and put it by the fire, which is where it is now, and let it watch the Fiesta Bowl game with us. It is starting to stand a little on it's own now and wag it's tail. I think it is going to make it, it is a little girl by the way. I think we will probably keep it in the house tonight out of the cold and if it keeps improving we will put it with it's mom tomorrow. It's sibling is doing just fine, it is a boy, and is out in the barn with his mom. The boy weighed just over 6 pounds and the girl is 4.5 pounds.

Here it is nursing from a bottle. It kind of looks like I am strangling it but I am just holding it's head in place.

This is when it was first starting to stand on its own.

I will try to post pictures of her brother tomorrow when I can get some while it is light outside.

Saturday, January 03, 2009

Big News

Yes, our first kid. I hope you are all as excited as we are. We thought it would never happen but last night it finally did. It was born around 6pm and weighed six pounds and it's a girl. There were actually two born but one did not make it. The mama birthed them in a place with a lot of loose dirt and we think the one that died got dirt stuck all to it and around it's mouth when it came out wet and got choked. Very sad. The other one is doing great though. We have four more mamas that are due any day as well. So, before too long we will have lots of little ones running around. Now for some pics.

Looks just like Margo

Here is mama with the baby nursing