Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Anybody Missing a Goat?

Ben is such a loving boy.  He loves to share kisses.  Especially when he does not feel good.  This last weekend he did not feel good at all, and spent the weekend loving up on all of us to try to make himself feel better.  Unfortunately the Monday Doctor appointment came back with a diagnosis of Strep Throat.  By Monday afternoon, my throat started to hurt so I stopped at the Dr. too.  Yesterday John and Randy came down with it and Noah's case was confirmed today.   Thanks Ben.  We all feel rotten.

After a horrible night Monday night, I was feeling pretty bad on Tuesday morning.   As I was pouring my coffee, I glanced out the kitchen window and kind of did a double take.   I was not sure what I saw.  There was a small animal eating grass behind the old garage.  Was it a calf, a goat, a small deer?  Maybe I just took too many drugs the night before.  The sun was not fully up, so I sent John out to take a closer look. (hey he is a boy and plus his case of strep had not been confirmed yet)  The animal ran away when he got close, but John said it had an ear tag.  I figured it must have been a neighbors calf that snuck away from the herd.   It ran back into the trees toward the direction I thought it must have come from, and we needed to leave to get John to the Dr. so I kind of forgot about it for a while.  Until I got home and saw this:
 Usually there are cats on the patio, not goats.  I opened the door to see if it was a friendly goat, and again it ran away.  Must not be that friendly.  It appears to like the left over rabbit food, as I see it by the cages quite a bit. I sent an email to as many neighbors as I could think of, but I don't know of anyone close that has goats.  Which means this one must have traveled quite a while to get here.  There is an ear tag, but I have no idea what the numbers mean.  I sent the photo below to the local extension office, but it was not a 4-H tag, so they could not help.   Too bad it does not say if lost please call...

Today when I got home from work, I did not see the goat, so I thought maybe it had moved on.  No such luck.  Now that it has found food, and a water supply it appears to be making it's self at home.  Today my phone call was to the county sheriff to see if anyone called to report a missing goat.  The dispatcher said she had files on horses, dogs, sheep, and cattle, but none on goats.    She was going to start one.

Since we have and empty barn and a pen, we decided to try to herd the goat toward the barn.   After all you just can't have a wild goat roaming around.  However,  I would like to state for the record that one sick woman and 2 sick boys, should never attempt this on their own.  All we succeeded in doing was getting the goat worked up and wearing us out.  So we left some food in the pen, in hopes that it will wander in and find it, so we can close the gate on it.    Tonight the goat is still roaming the farm.  So far I would not call him friendly, but I would also not call him aggressive.  Until we can get it rounded up, if you are in the neighborhood, please Beware of Goat.   And if by chance you are missing your goat, please come pick it up.

*Update*  We found out the goat was not a goat after all. 
It was a Mufalon sheep that escaped from a sale barn about 9 miles from our house.  The bad part was that they would not come and get it unless we could catch it.  Apparently they had tried before at a place farther south of us, which is part of the reason it made it all the way to our house. 
Anyway, we tried many times with no luck to get it in the pen.  One day our cousin Matt was over to get a mower, so I bundled up Ben and we went to ask Matt if he had any ideas about getting the goat in the pen.  The thing liked to sit down in the rocks by John's bedroom window, so I sent John around the house to flush him out so Matt could get a look at him.  Matt was putting the mower on the trailer and did not see the goat run by, but the sound of the mower must have scared the goat because it ran right into the pen.  John ran over and shut the gate, and we had it trapped.  Matt helped us do some quick fence work on the old pen to make sure the sheep did not get out, and we were successful. 
About a week later they finally came to get the sheep.  The guy showed up with a truck and a dog carrier.  I figured there was no way he could catch the sheep (very fast and very wild) let alone get it in a dog carrier.
He took one look at the pen, and said "This is a big pen".  So got a plan to trap it in the barn and he was going to try to corner it.  Once we finally got it in we shut the gate, and sure enough, that tough old farmer got the sheep cornered, walked up, put it in a headlock, and drug it out to the truck.  It was amazing.
Bye Bye goat.  Please don't come back.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Sleep Study

Last night Ben had his first sleep study up at Children's Hospital in Omaha.  They want to do this before they decide for sure if they will be removing his tonsils and adenoids.   After we checked in we had about 1/2 hour to kill, so we wandered around the front lobby and found a long fountain to explore.  Then we found a waiting room with lots of books.  Ben had fun reading the books and peaking through the curtain to see what was going on outside.

 Then it was time to get hooked up with all the wires.  I had brought a couple signing time videos, and they kept him occupied while the nurse hooked up all the connections.  There was one point where I thought he was trying to pull one of stickers off his face, but he was really just trying to do a sign.  I should have been watching the video closer.
He fell asleep while I was rocking him about 9:15 which was good.  The nurse came in to help me untangle and transfer him to his crib, but unfortunately it woke him up.  So after we got him situated, I had to lean over the crib and hold his had until he fell back asleep. 
I was tired so I laid down too.  Next time I will remember to bring a pillow for myself.  The one they had was not very comfortable.  However, I was happy that Ben was still in a crib, because when they brought in the crib, they took out the recliner that would have been for me, and left me with the bed.  YEAH!  I finally fell asleep about 10:45 only to be woke up at 11:15 because the nurse came in to reattach a few connections, and  cover him up because he was cold.  This of course woke him up, and once again I had to "snuggle" him to get him to go back to sleep.
This routine of them coming in and waking him up, or him waking up himself all tangled in the cords happened every one to two hours all night.  There was one point where it seemed like it had been a while since they had been in, and I was just sure it was 5:00 and they were putting the warmer on his hand to do a finger poke to check his blood.  Unfortunately it was only 3:00.   I must have dozed off after that because the next thing I knew it was 4:45 and she was getting ready to draw blood.  Before she unhooked everything I took a picture of my little mummy.

Here are all the wires.  No wonder he kept getting tangled. 

Before he left they gave him a little teddy bear.  He was trying to put on his shoes and was not very interested in the bear. 

All this is being done to get a baseline before we take the next step toward surgery to remove his generous tonsils and probably his adenoids too.  Hopefully the results will come back soon.  I don't like waiting. 
We will have to do another sleep study after the tonsils are out to see if there is improvement.  I will be better prepared next time. 

Saturday, March 19, 2011

New Animals on the Farm

Here are a few of the newsest members of our farm family.  We now have 3 French Lop Rabbits. They are experienced 4-H rabbits so hopefully that will help us since this will be the first year for both John and Noah with small animals. 

Meet Jonas  (aka Dad)

 Greyson  (aka son)

and Demi.  (aka Mom)
 Yes,  Jonas and Demi are a breeding pair which means at some point later on we could have little rabbits hopping around.  We will just have to wait and see, and do LOTS of research.  Thank You Fricke Family!

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Basketball is all done!

With one last shift in the concession stand today, we have officially ended basketball for the season.  Yeah! That means no more practice, no more struggling to hold Ben and keep him occupied during games, and no more sitting on hard bleachers. 
Now don't get me wrong.  Ben sits pretty good, and the games are relatively short.  But still it is nice to have the season behind us. 
Randy coached Noah's team and they had a really good year.  If it was not for one lucky 3 point shot, they would have been undefeated.  Here is a picture of his team.

Here are a couple shots of Noah in action.  He has some good skills that he picked up from playing with his big brother John. 

John also has some good skills and played on two leagues this year.  The Small Fry team ended up 4th, and the Knighstar team had a winning record also.  Way to go John.
Noah also liked to visit the concession stand during John's games. 

Ben especially enjoyed eating popcorn with his buddy Sarah. 

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Spread the Word to End the Word

Today I took a trip far outside my comfort zone.  I went to the Elmwood Murdock Elementary school with Ben, and we did 3 different Spread the Word to End the Word Presentations to the K-6 Students at the school.  I have not spoken in front of any group for about 20 plus years, so it was a little bit intimidating at first, but I had John's 4-H Powerpoint that I changed up a bit, to help guide what I was going to say. 

First we introduced the kids to someone with an intellectual disability (Ben), told a bit about the Special Olympics, and them asked them to take the pledge.  

The kids were great, and Ben was a ham working the crowd giving fist bumps and high fives. 

  In the pledge I challenged the kids to do two things.  1. Don't use the word retard(ed) to refer to anyone or anything, and 2) to tell others not to use it either.  When I asked if there was anyone in the room that would like to sign the pledge banner the hands went up very quickly. 

The kids did a good job of paying attention, and asked some great questions. 

We ended up with a banner that was pretty full of signatures. 

The offical day for the Spread the Word to End the word campaign is tomorrow, but Ben has therapy so it worked out better for us to go to school today.  I would like to thank Mr. Frederich and all the teachers for letting us come and making us feel so welcome.  I would also like to thank Monica from Monkey Musings for doing a presentation like this last year an blogging about it.  You gave me the inspiration, and courage and permission to use your idea and I am thankful that you did.  It was way eaiser than I thought it would be. Now I would like to challenge other blogging parents to think about doing a presentation at your school. 

 If you would like to pleade to Spread the Word to End the Word on-line please click here.