On Saturday Jim, Jonathan and Peter headed to near Bismarck to attend the 7th annual Prairie Days, which is a weekend of fun, fellowship, and teaching of homesteading skills. A lot of our friends attend the event. This year Jonathan was asked to provide a workshop on survival skills, and then the three played bluegrass music during one of the shared meals.
Andrew, David and I stayed behind to take care of the home front. We were kept busy with chores ... Jonathan has a lot of chickens running around at various stages of development, so we kept busy keeping everybody happy.
There are broiler chickens and our egg layers in movable pens out in the field, and we made sure there was plenty of fresh water and food for them. The cow and horse are also located in this field.
Those bell waterers can be a challenge to maintain, since the filter can become clogged and then water doesn't refill the tray. We had to clean out a couple of them during our day of keeping watch over the chickens.
These are the chicks still growing in the chicken coop. I can't remember how old they are now, but they are certainly growing like the weeds in the gardens.
So, what do you do with old campaign signs? You create a raft!
Andrew designed and created a raft made out of four old barrels and scrap wood. I was so impressed with the job he did. He even kept a hole in the middle and added a ladder, so after jumping off the raft they can go under the raft and come up in the middle and climb back on.
Instead of anchoring the raft in the lake to be left there all summer they are using poles to push it out to the main part of the lake and then drop anchor and have some fun.
Yesterday I was talked into taking a spin on the raft with David and Andrew. I didn't swim, but enjoyed watching them having fun in the water. The lake isn't very deep, but we poled the raft to a spot where it was plenty deep for the boys. The weather was a bit warmer than when we took the above photo!
Once the boys were swimming we noticed that we were drifting more than we should have been -- turns out Andrew's knot didn't hold when tying the anchor rope to the raft. We were able to pole to where we noticed the rope floating in the water and retied it to the raft.
By then it was time to get back to shore for one more feeding of the chicks before their food was taken away for the night. It turned out to be quite a challenge to pole against the breeze to get back to shore.
Even our dog Samson got into the act of enjoying the water. We didn't allow him to go with us on the raft, so he decided to try to follow us on shore. Just as we were starting to pole back to shore, we noticed that Samson had decided to swim all the way across from one shore to the opposite one. Good thing he is a good swimmer, and made it home before we did. The guys had our camera down at Prairie Days, so I didn't get any photos of the day.
PS: I don't know how to fix the problem of keeping my paragraphs where I want them to be. Whenever I use photos on a blog entry, it seems I am at the mercy of the Blogger program as to how the paragraphs and placement of the photos are arranged when I publish the post. It has been very frustrating to me. Does anyone else have this problem?