Saturday, October 31, 2015

Pizza night

I accidentally put this story on the other blog, so click over there to read it! Here's a couple more pictures of the fun Friday night.

I made 12 pizzas and there were about 14 people, ham and pineapple, hamburger and kolbassa, and various other toppings... olives, green peppers, mushrooms.

After eating we had a little fun trying to eat apples on a string.

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Leila's birthday party

Leila, one of our first year students, turned 21 on Saturday. She was friends with our second year students, Yulia and Karina before they came here, so she lives with them at the girls house on the far side of the village.

Leila was deported this spring from Russia, where she had been living with her sister, who is a legal resident and works there. Leila is always early for work and class.  She has a great deep laugh, too.

 Luda and her daughter  Suesha, the group home family there, ma her party special, everyone was invited, and had to write a wish for Leila on a paper leaf, and read it to her before we went into the kitchen for open faced sandwiches and blini with meat or mushrooms, as you can see everything was lovely looking, and tasty, too. 

After eating (with so many people, some ate at the table and some in the living room)  we were invited to the living room for a special treat- the birthday girl sang some songs for us. She is a very good singer.

After three songs, we enjoyed playing a charade game. It was fun with some people guessing correctly often. If you guessed correctly then the previous actor told you what to do, so there was a lot of laughing.  Garry guessed correctly and did one, too.
Karina's turn 

I think Kolya's a mouse this time
Garry had returned from checking out the attic, and the answer was, yes, we need to insulate the attic at this house. With the rising price of gas for heating, we are checking into saving money, and Garry hopes to finish this and build two small bedrooms onto the front of the house for Luda's family this fall, so we will have two bedrooms to use for our girls there. Unlike the other houses, this one does not have a separate family area, just a bedroom for Luda, which will become a private sitting room that will be how they access the new bedrooms. The room that Suesha uses now will become a bedroom for the girls, so two bedrooms for girls will be off the living room in the photos.

After the charades, we were invited back to the kitchen for desserts, there were some delicious cakes, with hot tea and soda pop to drink.

Friday, October 16, 2015

Field trip- farm visit

We took a trip to a dairy farm on Tuesday with almost all of the students (the two girls who were left behind to work at the "new" farm were selected by not doing a good job the day before), Most of the students rode in Victor's blue van and we took three of the girls in our car. We picked up Maria in Zaporosia along the way, since the farm was located south of of there. It took about an hour and half to drive there.

The owner of the farm came to visit our farm/school after we were on television news a couple weeks ago (we have had a few people show up here since then, or even contact us on facebook) and invited us to come for a tour. He would like to hire one of the students right now to care for calves, but we decided that they should finish the program first. He said he knew which one he wanted, we are pretty sure it is one of two boys he talked to the day he came. The second year students will finish in the spring, so we are excited to think they will be able to find jobs!.

The tour

There were lab coats and booties to wear

 After they got into the protective booties and stuff, or most of the students anyway, we headed over to check out the silage pile. Then we walked past the big heifers, you will notice the farm has cattle with a lot of Simmental blood (a beefier breed) but has been breeding Holstein recently.

 The dry hay is chopped with the small yellow machine in the photo. The students were really interested in the vertical mixer, since we have one coming in the container from Canada (which we hope to get soon) Less wheelbarrow pushing in the future.
the feed mixer

 Some of the first year students were talking with Garry about cow confirmation while looking at the dry cows, since they are studying cattle judging in class now.

Most of the students were really interested in how the automatic manure  scrapers worked in the dairy barn, which we saw next. The calves were housed in the same barn.
What are the boys watching? where the manure goes to.

Then we saw the feed making building

 They have sheep "for amusement" he told me, he speaks some English. The students tried to got closer when they saw the sheep but they ran away fast when a dozen students rn toward them.

Run! They are chasing us!

I had been looking for sheep, since we'd started the tour,  I had spotted their manure scattered everywhere on the ground at the farm.

small heifer facility

We saw the shed with the small heifers and bulls and then toured the milking facilities before they finished milking the cows. They had two milk tanks (coolers) in the equipment room we saw first.

The students took turns going down into the milking parlor, while the rest waited in the corridor. Again, the students were interested to see it because this is much like what ours will be like once it is installed, now that we have electricity at the new barn.

 We checked out a barn they are currently working on renovating for milk and dry cows I think with calving pens on the side. Garry was interested in the the windowed roof gables they built into the old Soviet style barns, which brought in so much light.
everybody pose!

Then we headed into upstairs over the milk parlor to the office, where the students were very interested in the computer program they had for the cows, they promised to get Garry a copy it is free software in Russian but can change to English, he said.

I said that they were interested in the computer program...

Around four o'clock our hosts offered the students some refreshments, fifteen minutes later they were gone and we prepared to head home, as some of the students needed to be at work helping with the evening miolking by seven pm.

Garry, Maria and most of the students- two had walked to the gate already

and with our hosts