August 6, 2012

A "Yay! I'm Back Online" Update

This is sort of like an "Around The Homestead" post, except it contains some non-homesteading news, like getting back online from the comfort of my own home! And many thanks to Cecilia!

To fix my old computer I tried a new ethernet card and a new modem, but the problem was internal damage due to the lightning strike. It still works fine, it just can't get on the internet.

I did purchase and am now using a data surge protector.

My saddest news is that we lost Kris. The official diagnosis was Lymes Disease. This is caught from ticks, which is unexpected, because yes, he did have tick protection. Ticks have been terrible this year and Dan and I had found ticks on both him and Kody. One day he was following the goats around, the next day he couldn't/wouldn't get up. It's a good thing Dan was home because I never could have carried his 80 pounds to the car to get him to the vet. Dogs have a 90% chance of full recovery if it's caught within one week. He rallied a few days after he started the antibiotics, but several days later he just seemed to give up; wouldn't move, wouldn't eat, and then he was gone. It was a real blow to both of us. Even so, Kris always seemed to have something wrong, i.e. he never seemed fully healthy the entire 5 months we had him and I was always treating him for something. We can't help but wonder if there wasn't more going on with him than we'll ever know. :(

Consequently we are preparing to order guinea keets!

Our best news is that thanks to Workers Comp and the Texas Workforce Commission, Dan recovered almost everything he lost working for that trucking company. We weren't expecting it, so it was a blessing indeed.

Blueberries have finished.

Figs have come in.

I'm harvesting figs, tomatoes, cucumbers, and cantaloupe.

We've gotten over 4 inches of rain since August 1st. This is after 9 inches of rain in July.

Between that, harvesting, and preservation, the garden is a mess.

I have two new goats, more on that later.

Baby Chick is now Chicken Little. More on that later too.

We've put the last two kitchen projects on hold to do outdoor projects.

Bathroom too.

We'll resume indoor house projects when the weather turns wintry. Or maybe sooner with all our rain.

August is wood month. We had one of our two ancient oaks topped of it's many dead branches, and this will be firewood for this winter and next. To me it's always sad to cut a beautiful tree, but this one is dying and large branches were falling randomly. Fortunately never on the house, a vehicle, or anyones head.

I need to acknowledge a blog award I received from Cranky Puppy right after the lightening strike. I am always honored to be thought of for awards, but I'm so far behind right now that I think I will need to make this blog an award free one.

Thank you to all of those who continued to visit and comment while we were offline. Posting was sporadic and I made few replies and return blog blog visits. I will slowly be able to start doing that; I'm curious what you all have been up to!


  1. Sorry about your dog. :( Sounds like you have been busy!

  2. so sorry about your dog.
    What a blessing though to have rain - we have had so little here.
    Looking forward to leaning more about your goats.

  3. What a rollercoaster. I'm glad to hear you were able to recover financially, at least to an acceptable degree. I'm also sorry to hear about Kris :(

  4. Aw, such a pity about Kris - he was a stunning looking dog.

    Looks like we're both back online on the same day. Welcome back :)

  5. Oh darn, Leigh. So, so sorry you lost Kris. I'm tending to think you were right in your assumption that he wasn't a totally healthy dog when you got him. There have been several cases of Lyme disease in dogs around here and I've yet to hear of one dying from it.

    Good to hear your computer situation has been rectified. We're really at a loss anymore without them, aren't we?

    We haven't given up the inside projects yet (probably should) but we're feeling the outside ones are getting away from us. Always plenty to do, that's for sure!

  6. Oh no. I am so sorry about Kris.

  7. That is sad news indeed about the loss of Kris. I've heard that Guinea fowl can be good guardians being very protective and territorial. That is a huge amount of rain. We've been short of rain all summer, to the point of having to water parts of the garden and choosing what to just let go.

  8. Like everyone else I'm sorry about your loss. I've often said that I am so glad we live here in the Northwest. I read on other blogs all the time about snakes, bugs, scorpions and other weird things that people deal with on their homesteads. We have very little to worry about here in comparison. It will be sad to be dog less. I assume you will be looking for another?

  9. oh no, you've been really unlucky this year with your animals; what a pity to loose Kris:) I do hope it's picking up for you soon, but it seems that you've done better in other areas. recovering the losses doesn't help with the loss if Kris, but it makes life easier in general? your rainfall doesn't seem to be excessive to us, we usually have between 1000 and 1500 mm per year, so 9 in seems to be quite normal - in our climate! on the other hand we heard a lot about droughts in the US, so maybe it's better to have more rain than usual?
    good luck with all your endeavours, we're busy outside as well, inside can wait until winter:)

  10. So sad to hear about Kris.

    I guess we can expect a lot of new posts coming up here. Can't wait to hear all your news, but I think you've got a lot of work to do also.

  11. Thank you to everyone for your kind words about Kris. It does seem like we've had some tough experiences with animals this past year. Some just seem to be healthier from the get-go, some are in poorer health in general. We aren't planning to get another dog at this time. We'll just have to see what the future brings.

    I can't complain about the rain! True, it's been a lot, but we've had our share of drought conditions too in the past, so I know I'd better be thankful while we've got it. It's interesting though, that it changes what grows!

  12. Sorry to hear you lost Kris. Enjoy your rain. I have to water every day just to keep plants alive.

  13. PTL on the blessings of at-home internet, garden produce and recovered expenditures! So sad about Kris . . . sounds like the Lyme's disease was the final straw for him. Perhaps he had a compromised immune system, or an auto-immune disease, like some people. You had such an investment of time, hope and love in him. :-(

    So strange; in reading others' blogs I've gotten the impression that the whole country is suffering from drought, but no -- YOU are hogging all the rain! ha

  14. Poor Kris! You've been through the wringer lately haven't you? Funny that you're only 2-3hrs away and you had rain. None for us :(

    Glad you're back online!

  15. So sorry about Kris, but it sounds like his loss might have been your turning point. Wonderful about Dan, and can't wait to hear about the new goats!

  16. Sorry to hear of your dog! Glad to hear from you!

  17. So sorry to hear about Kris. I think you're probably right that there was something else going on with him.

    On the computer front I'm so glad you're up and running also great news about Dan.

  18. So sorry about the Kris news, it's so hard loosing a four-legged member of the family. And great news about Dan's recouping his money. You guys seem to bounce back and move on with life quite well. I think it's your positive attitude that helps in those kinds of situations.

    New goats . . . guinea keets . . . life goes on!

    Unbelievable weather this summer, eh?

  19. Sorry about your doggie friend, Kris :(

  20. I am so sorry about is always a very sad time when we lose our furry companions.

    It so good to see you back again and to know that you are online again. xo

  21. Leigh, so glad to have you back easily online from home.

    That's too bad about Kris. One thing's for sure, any animal on your homestead is getting the best possible care - you just can't account for what's hiding inside their genetics.

    I'm eager to hear all about your various goings-on!

  22. I was sorry to read about Kris, but agree that might have been the final thing for a body to bear.
    But I was delighted to hear that your DH prevailed!!!! Wonderful! When he's headed this way, Ailee says she'll ride shotgun to your place. ;)
    Remember to come up for air, Leigh. Deep breaths once and a while are very helpful. ;)
    I'm getting ready to do a run of tea towels on one loom, and rag rugs on the well as scour two North Ronaldsay fleeces I got from Orkney. So much to do...and too many distractions! Good thing I don't have bright, shiny objects in my house or I'd never get anythign done. ;)
    Welcome back!

  23. I'm glad you're back online. Looks like we've missed a lot of what was happening on your farm. I am looking forward to the updates! Sorry to hear about your dog. Maybe his immune system was just too weak to fight off all the things that came his way. Take care. I hope we get some of rain...

  24. So sorry about Kris :( Seems it's been a rough year for animals. Hope you and Dan keep your spirits up! All your animals are so fortunate to have lived on such a wonderful homestead as yours, no matter if they are with you even just a short time. Glad to see you back here.

  25. Glad to see you are back online.
    I just had to laugh when I read about the guinea keets: The helmeted Guineafowl ("tarentaal") is native to the region where I grew up. We used to take some eggs and put them under a brooding hen. The chicks are the cutest things ever! However, the chicks are not very hardy and need some TLC to survive. Ours were never really very tame and we just kept them as pets, since none of us really liked the meat. They make an interesting noise - poems have been written about that noise!

  26. I'm so sorry you lost Kris. It does sound like there were some underlying conditions that kept him susceptible to illness. Glad your are back online at home. Nothing so frustrating as no internet service, huh?>

  27. So sorry to hear about the dog, it's always hard to lose a furry loved one. You have a great blog here, I'll definitely be back for updates! Btw, some kitchen stores do sell the utility scraper you've shown previously. I have two, and I love them!
    Keep up the great work!

  28. Sorry to hear about losing your's never easy losing a furry friend, but I am sure he was glad to have belonged to you and your husband if only for 5 months.

    Sounds like things have been quite busy in your neck of the woods. Our harvest was dismal to say the least this year, since the terrible drought here. I'm hoping to plant a bumper crop and yield something this year.

    Take care,


  29. Yeah! Glad you're back! Can't wait to hear about your keet adventures. I'm thinking about getting a few myself...noisy buggers, but really keep the ticks son has several on his ranch. Sorry you lost your dog..always a sad thing.

  30. Hi Leigh - I'm really sorry to hear about the loss of Kris. I'm sure that your home feels his absence and hope that you are doing okay...

    It does certainly sound like you're keeping busy in the garden and with your other animals though. What an amazing thing to be able to grow your own figs! Nom nom :)

  31. Awww:( My heart goes out to you on Kris. How sad. Prayers and hugs! Hope you get all you want to get done outside before more rain sets in. Glad to have you back online :)

  32. So glad you're back "on the air", I've missed your posts.

    Very sad about Kris.

  33. Welcome Back! I'm so sorry to hear about Kris. You have caught some terrible luck with animals, but you have the right kind of approach and attitude to keep at it. Can't wait to hear all about the items you teased in the list!

  34. I very much appreciate everyone's "welcome back." And thank you for the kind sympathies about Kris. I have to agree that he seemed to have a compromised immune system; there was more going on than an ordinary vet visit could detect.

    We're getting even more rain! Actually our area got quite a bit last year too, but the rainfall was spotty; it could pour rain the next street over, and we wouldn't get a drop! It was maddening. I believe the same thing is happening this year, except we're the recipients. "Officially" (as in airport records I suppose) the area is under the expected average rainfall amount. Crazy!

  35. So sorry to hear about your dog. At least you did what you could.

  36. I'm so sorry about Kris :( Happu to hear other areas are looking up though :)

    Best Wishes,


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