Check Your Pockets
I was recently at our favorite family owned feed store with the brains of this crazy operation, when I put my hand in my pocket of my winter coat (yes, we are still dealing with winter temps here in the Northeast) and I felt something unusual. I thought “what the heck?” and I pulled out my pocket findings. The gentleman behind the counter gave me a weird look and I asked him if he knew what they were. Yes, there were multiples…Take a look:
Any guesses? Well, if you are privileged enough to live this crazy homestead life, you might know. The answer? Lids to purchased pig semen used to artificially inseminate our pigs. Some might look at this as trash, but to me, it’s not trash at all. It’s a reminder of the late, cold December nights, performing artificial insemination (AI) with only a headlight, the praying that goes along with it that it will take. Now, I am not the AI expert, or the “daddy”, you-know-who is. But, I am the faithful assistant. I keep the semen warm in my pocket and hand over all the tools…I will spare you the intimate details. In doing all of this, I somehow end up with all the lids in my pocket, which on the day that I found them made me smile and look forward to precious new life on the homestead.
So here’s the thing….we are rapidly approaching our first of 3 due dates. The Tibetan Prayer Flags are hung(most homesteaders I know are also a little superstitious and every little bit helps), the warming lights are on, and the creep area is prepped. Now all that’s left are the sleepless nights, and those are not for the mom-to-be, that’s for us. We never take these events lightly. Sure, we worry about the babies, we know to expect some loss, and this year we are more prepared to handle the runts, but we also worry about the safety and health of the momma pigs. They provide a food source for us that we never take for granted.
Some of last year’s crew, aren’t they the cutest babies?
So, if you are prayerful, have a lucky coin or what have you, send some good vibes our way because ready or not, here they come! And, don’t forget to check your pockets, you never know what’s in there that might bring back a memory and a smile in anticipation of things to come.
I will never think of “AI” the same again!
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This is a heartwarming and exciting story about the joys and challenges of homesteading. Best of luck with the upcoming due dates!
Live Free Offgrid
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Thank you, it’s definitely an exciting and nerve wracking time for us. Thank you for your good wishes!