Thursday, October 21, 2010

My favorite sound...

well, one of them, is the sound of a barn full of animals eating.  I don't think anything makes animals happier than eating - and I like to think of them as happy.  At this point in time, it takes about 45 minutes, twice a day to feed and water everyone.  I am cutting big sheaves of grass for the goats as well as giving them alfalfa pellets.  The horses get alfalfa cubes, this stuff that looks like dog food, but it really mostly rice bran, and a yeast/salt additive with probiotics (everything except the cubes is for Ohia, the sick horse - but since they eat together, I have to put everything in both buckets so he at least gets some.  The extras won't hurt the mare).  The chickens get grass cuttings and kitchen scraps and a little bit of commercial feed.  The sheep need water twice a day, and the chickens need daily - and the horses we have set up on their own catchment system which is nice.  A horse can drink 20-30 gallons a day - I would not want to haul 60 gallons of water for horses every day - or even stand there with a hose all day.  Four goats don't even finish 5 gallons a day.  Seven chickens only drink a few cups.

Tomorrow is my son's race at HPA.  If he qualifies, he gets to fly to O'ahu next week to run in the state meet.  He still has hopes their team will make it - but I kind of doubt it.  They only let the top two teams in our conference go - and I think they'll be third.  Hope I get to eat my words, but hmmm - both Parker and Hilo High are gunning for that spot. Honoka'a's got the first place wrapped, for sure.  If my son can go to O'ahu, that means my parents can go watch him and cheer him on.  That will be very cool for both them (I am guessing) and him.  Oh, wow, his dad will be on O'ahu, too - I thought the race was Saturday, but it is really Wednesday!  Awesome - a whole crew for our first state runner.  I do hope he makes it.  He wants to run the course (3 miles) under 20 minutes, but it is a rough course - hilly and slippery in spots.

Sounds like we dodged a bullet today - 6.9 earthquake in Mexico.  If it were a little bigger, we might have gotten a tsunami.  We had a teeny tsunami a few months ago.  It was fascinating, but thankfully, undestructive.  Living in Hilo, you are aware of the history and the possibility of tsunami.  The lower division of the school at which I work is in a zone where it will get hit if there were to be any major tsunami. The building has been around for a bit, and during either the 1946 or 1960 tsunami, there were apparently fish in the elevator shaft.  Since the elevator is at the back of the rather large building, that is fairly astonishing.

We are way up the mountain, so no tsunami will reach us, and now that our youngest was accepted to Kamehameha, we don't have to worry about any of the kids being washed away - they are all safely above sea level....we don't even have to really worry about hurricanes, here.  Although the Civil Defense says it is theoretically possible for a large hurricane to go over the island, in reality, Mauna Kea and Mauna Loa are too massive and large - a hurricane usually skirts around the island.

We do get rain.  Lots and lots and lots of rain.  One memorable November, we got 33 inches of rain in slightly over 24 hours.  There was a lot of damage in Hilo and Ka'u, but at our house, all we noticed was that we couldn't hear each other or the phone over the rain on the metal roof.  Our land is used to isn't so good for horse hooves, but now that I have a really nice barn, thanks to my husband stopping all other projects to build it...I don't even have to worry about that so much.  I will have to wait and see how sheep hooves handle the incredible mud here.

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