Running Moon Farm



Farm Brand

  The Stretton's, Jr.
193 J. Miller Road
P.O. Box 546
Dry Creek, Louisiana 70637


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The saga of our experience of the hurricane Rita is over. The Lord blessed us in that no one was hurt, and none of the animals were hurt or lost. We have nearly returned to normal, or so much so that its so close that we just are thankful.


October 7, 2005: We survived Rita, but it was an experience I hope never in my life to go through again. We have so much damage. We were without water and power, water from Sept 23ed until Sept 30, and without power from Sept 23ed until today, Oct 7th. Our phone service was on and off for a week, and not very dependable for several days due to the fact that the phone company had to keep taking up the generators from the remote sites to keep them from being stolen. We had a generator that we had used for a lot of years and it finally gave up the ghost and we had to get another one. We lost our freezers and refergerators, took our baths in dish pans, went to bed at dark, and up at dawn. Thank goodness for Ajax broadcasting out of Lake Charles or we would have been totally in the dark about what was going on. Don't ever think the "good old days" are fun!!!! We pulled my poor old wringer washer out that hadn't seen the light of day for years and that poor old machine did us proud in washing our clothes. It was a bit rusty at first, but soon got back in the hang of things! When the lights finally came back on we both were so surprized at how yellow everything looked under artificial lighting!! hehehe. Mosquitoes-----little jet planes that came around in clouds looking for blood doners, and as one of the Ajax guys said, "gave T-shirts and cookies" for being such good doners.

I am so thankful to have my computers back. Here are some pictures for you to see, starting with day one and on through the ordeal! We had a huge 2 trunk cedar tree on the front of the house that we had to cut off to get out, and tin messed up on the barn. Fence down and water lines broken--the north side of the summer kitchen looked like a war zone, as well as just about everywhere else. Wayne, Beth and Sarah Syron went throught the storm with us--don't know what we would have done without their company and help those first 3 days. They went home to Lake Arthur on Monday, and thankfully still had their house, but damage.

Now for the pictures!

We are recovering, rebuilding fences, cleaning up debris and trying to put things back together again. One of the beautiful trees down was a tulip tree near the front of the house that was about 20 years old. Along with the Tulip tree, and the Cedar trees that came down and landed on the front of the house we will mill into lumber for new beautiful tools. Just give us a while to recover and for the lumber to cure! I will be back at work in the Studio and new gorgeous fibers will be coming in the catalog soon.

November 5, 2005:

I didn't get to go to Kid & Ewe at Borne, Texas, so feeling a bit sorry for myself I though I would update you on how we were doing here after Rita.

I went out and took some pictures of the place to bring you up to date. First I want you to know that its lots and lots of work to recover from a storm like this. We are so thankful our damage was no where near what others had like down in Cameron and along the coast.

We got the trees off the front of the house and now at least it looks more normal from a certain stand point, but still lots of repair to do. The Tulip and Cedar trees are cut up and into logs for the saw mill, and piles for the woodshop for turning when they cure.

We have been repairing fences, but also clearing right of way for the tractor to get into the pastures. This is on the branch that runs through the center of the farm, and as you can see there are lots of oak trees down here. We are cutting them up into firewood and into logs for milling. Its slow and hard going, but we are gaining. We have to clear the trees before we can get to the fences, but have all the fences up except for 2 of the other larger pastures. At least the sheep can get into the North Pasture now where they need to be so badly.

the secure lot is looking some better, but not much as we haven't been able to get into it to clear it off yet. The pastures are so much more important, but we have stopped long enough to do a worming, and here you can see some of the mess in the secure lot, the little goats going to the shearing shed and catch lot for worming.

you can see how messy the secure lot is yet--and the sheep are not very happy about it even now, although they are settling down and beginning to act normal again. They still think the barn is the safest place to be and will pile in there even if it needs help too!!


November 26, 2005:

We are on the last pasture trying to get the fences up and fixed. I thought you might like to see some pictures so I took a few as we begin to clear a right of way for the fence. Here we are trying to get into the downed timber to clear a way in where we need to put the new fence. The old fence is so destroyed that a new one is the only way we can go.

Lloyd had to stop and gas up the chain saw, but we managed to get about 100 feet into the brush and timber on Saturday Nov 25, the day after a very nice Thanksgiving.

The sheep have settled down now, but they still think we should be cleaning up their night catch, but they want into the other pastures too, so they just have to wait until we can get to everything. They follow us as we go out to work and do all they can to sneak into the field we are working on--they are so silly, but so beautiful too.


January 3, 2006

We are so excited-------we have finally finished repairing fence!! So I though you would like to see some pictures of the last of it, and what the flock thought!

Isn't she Nosey, and so beautiful!!

I though you might like to see our bottle baby-----she is Alyssa from the Perkins' farm!


The Barn and Secure yard are nearing completion in repairs. I thought a few pictures would be in order!

Lloyd finishes the roof

Feb 8, 2006:

Alyssa is growing like a weed!


March 3
We have gotten everyone but the 3 Rams and 2 lambs sheared---do they all look funny now. I don't know anyone hardly. I am almost as silly as the lambs, in that I have to learn everyone all over!!

The girls in the "nursery" pasture are just as funny, but it hasn't slowed down their curiosity or the fact they think I should feed them whenever I apear!

and of course Lloyd is still
repairing on the barn!
I guess we will be repairing
for a while yet!

March 23
I think most of the ewes all decided to do their "nursery" thing as close together as they could, so:

3 sets of twins, 2 salt and pepper, 1 white set; 2 singles, one white and one black!

March 25
Now the babies are going out to pasture with their mama's. I think they are beginning to be a bit bossy too!


more babies



Alyssa is growing so much, she is almost not a baby anymore.

April 10

You can probably figure out that I just can't seem to get enough of the lambs. They are so cute and play all the time. When I go out to feed in the evenings its as though they have to show off the most, chasing each other, bucking, running, bouncing, plying on top of the log. They are so entertaining, I could spend hours watching them, but I really should be working!


April 11

It is dry here, but so beautiful with Spring in full. Even though we are working hard to get timber cleared and debris picked up, I just had to share these flowers. Enjoy

April 21
We have finally got the timber finished. Just to show you some of the work involved: before and after:

Some of the logs we skidded up:

we feel we are finally beginning to look like the beautiful farm we were. We still have lots of work in our yard, and the roof on the house has still to be replaced as well as half of the east wing of the barn, but we have come so far we feel truely blessed.

Alyssa continues to grow so much! Now she is with the other weanlings, and I am not sure she thinks she belongs there yet, hehe.

I think I can see why she feels that way!


June 14, 2006

Its been a while since I put pictures and what's been going on here, but I am going to try to catch up now. We have started the re-placement of the roof on the house. Its been so hot, its going slow, but with the first storm in the Gulf, we just have to get going. Lloyd's nephew Dennis is doing the job, and I am so excited. The front of the house the trees fell on is first, and we are adding the roof over the deck I have wanted so long. Here are a few pictures to catch us up:

Of course we are still working on the other stuff, like still cleaning up debris and timber, and the fire wood pile just keeps growing!

we had a little visitor too, I had to stop and get its picture in the act, so cute:

Some more pictures of interest. The pasture the ewes and lambs are in still needs some work, but there has been so much we just get it as we can. The ram's pastures are looking good, the big brush pile hasn't been burned yet, but the fences have been re-done, and the flood damage repaired. The milk goat is Snow, and the weanlings are behind her, its a bit hard to see them, but the pastures look lots better. There is still so much to do yet, and its been nearly a year.


June 20, 2006

Still trying to get the roof replaced! Rained like crazy through the weekend, but not like they got at Houston! At least we are back at it again! Dennis is putting up lathe now, soon the Galvalon will be going up. I am sooo excited.


July 3, 2006

We have at least moved over to the west side of the house. I am beginning to wonder if we will ever finish the roof!!


July 7, 2006

We are still trying to get the roof done. With all the rain we have had and the humidity so high, we are really going slow. So far 4 days have only gotten framing in on the west side of the house!


July 25, 2006

Every once in a while I think I must be boring everyone with all the damage and mess we have had with Rita. I sold the Majacraft Susie to a very nice lady in Florida and she sent me a Farm Blog with pictures and stuff on their farm life. I tried to find a place to leave comments after I had laughed my way through her everyday life, but could not.

You know farm life is so different from life in the city. We live so close to nature that we don't even think the same way. I get stressed out going to town even. So silly too since I worked so many years in DeRidder only 25 miles away. Still I feel like its over crowded, going too fast and so many people are so stressed. I am thankful that now we are retired, we can get up in the morning, go milk the goats, do the chores and then start our day with "what are we doing today to try to get our normal life back". We are still trying to get the roof replaced on the house, sometimes I think it will never be finished, but know that it will. Lloyd is almost finished with the east wing of the barn (thank the good Lord for that). We have the center of the big circle drive to get cleaned up, and of course all the mess from the roof work on the house. Still we are slowly getting it done. Everyday we enjoy watching the little girls grow (12 and Alyssa). Now that I have Alyssa in with the 12 little girls she has discovered that she really is like the others, and when I go out to feed, morning and night she leads them to me at a dead run yelling every step. I am not sure she will ever think she is really a sheep!

Its been raining off and on now for several weeks, and the last few days has seen rain near every day. Normal farm stuff still goes on. Since Lloyd has been trying to get the rest of the east wing of the barn recovered, he had this hole, so of course when it begin to rain, there he was, without a hat on the roof trying to cover up the hole that was made as he tore off the old roof.

Just so we all don't forget how much fun this roofing business has been, this is the back side of the house--I am just about wore out with it!!!


August 15, 2006

The roof is finished, except for some cosmetic things we will slowly get finished, but I don't think I have ever been so happy to see something complete in so very long. Maybe because we were having someone do the work, I don't know, it seemed like it took forever.

we still have railing on the upstairs deck, siding on the clearance dormer, and some cosmetic stuff for the end over roof areas. Other than that its just flue caps, and placing the last joint back on the living room flue. We have been working on cleanup too--messy is the only word for what happens with a job like this.

We have to clean up around the house, and get the debris out of the big circle drive yet. Replace the main entrance gate, and get all the young growth from volunteer trees and stuff that seemed to go crazy after the storm and sprout all over the place! I guess its "renewable energy" hehehe. Hopefully by the end of the year we will be normal again----------if we have no more big storms!!! Pray with us, Sept 23 is 1 year now we have been working on this!

August 16, 2006

You remember that front drive? , well we found it finally!

We worked all day on it!

It was hot too, maybe we will find the front yard this week! Main front gate is still squished though.

Naturaly I have to enclude some pictures of the yard and house, just to make sure I am thankful!

the shredder is still at the back poarch, and lots still to do, but looking out towards the barn it makes me feel good

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