The mornings are getting a bit cooler and leafs on the trees are no longer perfectly green. It's that time of the year that I love the most, but unfortunately autumn is just around the corner. This morning the sun is out and there is not a cloud in the sky, a sky that is starting to show that pale blue colour of cold weather to come.
Mindy, Mandy, Molly and My are picking up speed. The warmest, sometimes really hot weather is over and our lovely sheep can breath freely, again. Their woolly coats are impressively thick and they are a bit too big where the waistline should be, so cooler days are a treat for them. They are eating the lush, deep green grass with such frenzy that I think they have had a look at the calendar too and know that summer is about to end. At he moment, their passion is the rowanberry. They have eaten all the berries they can reach so now they gather under a tree waiting for me to come and help them. Mindy knows that I can be slightly slow on the uptake so she tries to stand on her hind legs, just to show me what they are trying to achieve.
So I pick berries for them and first everything is calm and orderly and then they get a bit exited and greedy. I bounce between four very round sheep like a lottery ball, trying to keep my balance, sharp clippers in my hand and giggling madly. This makes them even more exited and the whole thing is just a bit silly and a lot of fun. The berries must be very good for them, so as long as we can reach them, we'll carry on picking. The trees are full of big, red bunches of vitamin so there is plenty to go around. No migrating bird will be left without a travel snack either. There are also a lot of apples for the bigger animals this year.
Our four sheep are still providing their nanny service to our tired hens. Lotta is using them as soon as she has a chance to get away from little Matti and Maja. I found Matti having a late breakfast with Mandy the sheep, one morning. The funny thing was that he felt that standing between her front legs was the safest place. Poor Mandy stood stock still for ages, while a little cockerel munched away happily. Maja is a bit more careful around her huge minders but she can always be found somewhere close by. The siblings stay together at all times and the constant beeping is a soothing soundtrack to the day. Matti's voice is not so hi-pitched anymore and Maja's voice was always calmer... Little Ulla stays with her mother most of the day but even Pippi has started to trust our nanny sheep.
They all tend to meet up under the Rowan tree in the afternoons and one day I saw the tiny, fist sized little chick climbing along on Molly's back. Molly was lying down looking a bit worried, but Ulla was enjoying her adventure and did not seem to be remotely nervous. Pippi the hen stood by but for once she did not peck the sheep or dance around like a hyper duster. Even Pippi needs a break from her chick, it seems...
Mr. Chip celebrated his 14th birthday yesterday!! We never thought we would see the day but lo and behold, we did." And a very nice day it was", said the birthday dog. His Cushing syndrome did a U-turn on us. When we went for his blood tests, a week ago, they showed that he was completely devoid of cortisol, the stress hormone. So now we are having a weeks break from medication and then starting slowly again. The fact that Mr. Chip is so balanced means that we did not see the difference in his behavior. He still ate well, asked for walks and slept normally. He rolled around in the bed as if he was possessed and chewed on hands, in a polite way.
After a weeks break we do notice a change in him, though. He barks madly if he's left behind for some reason, he has an even bigger appetite and he bounces on bare feet. This is a 14 year old dog who probably should know better... His best friend would have told us that "This is the glory of a terrier". And so it is. My toes are a bit sore, though....
The swallows are meeting up in large groups, preparing to head off for warmer climates. This year they find our garage to be a good meeting point. My small car looks like a manure heap on wheels as I keep forgetting to park it outside. Yet another sign that summer is ending...
The Rowanberries are also popular amongst red foxes, badgers and squirrels. Makes sense, when you think about it... Deer and elks enjoy them too. Happy September!!
A blog about a small holding in Southern Finland. Each original story is accompanied by a stunning watercolour illustration or resplendent photographs.