Category Archives: Dogs

Pepper and Ivy

So…..on July 4, Lois posted a video to the farm’s Facebook page of Pepper the baby goat and Ivy, a friend’s new Corgi puppy.

We all watched in disbelief as it went “viral”!!  Click here for the Wikipedia page about what constitutes a viral video.

At this time, it has “reached”  over 180,000 people!! It’s been shared over 1200 times!! Thank you to all who participated in this madness. It seems to have spread some much-needed joy around the interwebs. Keep it up!

Facebook Link Pepper and Ivy

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If you think that’s awesome, check out the one Jill got of my Grandspawn and Pepper. Funny stuff. Here’s a link to the FB videos page for CCC. 

Better yet, subscribe to the CCC YouTube channel. 

Best option of all…come visit!!

  • Make your own amazing memories and take your own photos and videos of the shenanigans down on the farm.
  • Kiss a llama.
  • Keep the goat from eating the hydrangea.
  • Tell Lois you googled “Queen of Poo” and saw her picture.
  • Pack a picnic or grab Subway and meet a friend under the lean-to for lunch.
  • Snuggle Gladys, the Wonder Chicken or a baby bunny.
  • Remind Laura she will always be Employee of the Month.
  • Shop in the Farm Store–upcycled items, antiques, art, jewelry and more goodies to remember your visit by.

You don’t have to have kids to visit. Just get your butt here before you waste the whole summer. Day Pass admission is only $6, and a Season Pass ($25) is a great value.The farm is open to the public three days a week (Thursday, Friday, Saturday in the summer), but can also be rented for field trips, birthday parties, reunions, weddings, proms, etc.

A season pass is also a great way to help support the farm. That $25 can buy a bag of pig chow or llama lunch for this winter. Remember the motto at the Dollar Barn? “We don’t do this to make money; we do this to make friends”? Our new motto is, “We don’t do this to make money; we make money so we can do this.”

What exactly is “this”? Glad you asked.

Mission Statement

Our mission is to help society reconnect with each other, animals and the land itself.

Vision Statement

Our greater vision is for every person to have something of nature to connect with – be it animal, plant or even the stars.  I want to save our country and our world.  I want every person to do better.  Consume less, discard less, purchase more wisely, grow something.

 

Now, LET’S UNPLUG AND GO OUTSIDE!!!!

 

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Spring 2016 Update

Hi!! We prayed and hoped and dreamed that we would be busy at the farm this summer; busy enough to feed and shelter all these lovely beasts and ourselves through another Minnesota winter. I’m no accountant, but it looks like we are on our way!

herd, pony, llama, sheep, cow, cattle, angus, highland cattle

We’ve now hosted several field trips from Cook, Little Fork, International Falls, Hibbing, Nett Lake, Tower, Bois Forte, schools and organizations. THIS is why the farm has been opened up to the public–we believe it is important that children know where their food comes from. We also think all people should know their farmer and where at least SOME their food comes from. When was the last time you ate an entire meal that was grown or produced within 50 miles from your home? That is pretty tricky in this part of the world!

field trip class

 

Farmers’ Markets are a great resource for local food, by the way. We are excited to be a part of the Cook Farmers’ Market. Laura also participates in several craft shows and expos during the winter to spread the word about the Cook’s Country Connection and the Farm Store, where we sell our own handmade items and consign those of other local artisans. This coming Saturday is the first Market Day of the year. See you in the park downtown Cook (by the gazebo). Hopefully, we will have time to sell at other local Markets this summer, too.

travelling farm store

Did you hear that the Junior Prom was here this year?? There are a million great photos on Facebook, and we have TWO weddings booked for the summer.

prom

Click here to see the Prom Album.

Most Thursdays, Mike Hanson will have his team of Haflingers giving wagon rides around the property. He charges $3/person and it is worth it!

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There are lots of new babies to meet this year including bunnies, a baby goat (nickname Totes), and baby birds.

white bunny

Make sure to follow us on Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest. SEE YOU AT THE FARM!! Now, let’s unplug and go outside! It’s supposed to be a gorgeous weekend, but this rain has made the zoo area wet. We have lots of extra muddy boots to lend  if you forget.

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KD Images

Who knew Kathy Duame of Cook was such a talented artist?? We didn’t, until she sent us a lovely card with a hand-painted black Angus cow on it. Lois just had to give her a call about selling said cards in the Farm Store. Kathy had several of the originals scanned and printed on postcards, which sell for $2 at the Farm Store at Cook’s Country Connections. The plan is to make them into greeting cards, too. Someday! Also, the originals are for sale, too, for just $7.95 each.

Here’s a sampling:

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POO!

This was my first official blog post, almost two years ago. Please check it out. It tells all about why you can Google Queen of Poo and Lois shows up. 🙂 Oh, and fun facts about fertilizer are also included. Welcome! Loveyabye

Pajari Girls

Don’t be scared…it’s only fertilizer.

So my sister and I were sitting by the bonfire tonight, talking about all the by-products we use from The Funny Farm (now Cook’s Country Connection), and naturally the talk turned to poo.  Her critters produce a LOT of it. And since we are both avid gardeners, this is a good thing. The trouble is, all poo is not created equal. Thus, I decided to share an overview of the poo we fertilize with, and why. (Please note: NPK is the amount of Nitrogen, Phosporus, and Potassium in fertilizer. Most synthetic fertilizer is 20, 10,5. However, we prefer the organic, homegrown type that comes from all the critters. It takes a bigger volume of fertilizer, but it’s worth it. And free. And we have to something with all that poo!)

  • Horse/Donkey Poo: Little Bit, Itchy, Squirt, Toby and Jack eat a LOT. Horses are less-efficient at digesting than other farm…

View original post 590 more words

More trouble with chickens….

This farming stuff is tricky business.

I like having my chickens free to do as they choose during the day.  They eat bugs and seeds and they look kinda cute bopping around the farm.

The problem with chickens being loose, is that a few of them have it in their heads to lay their eggs outside of their nest boxes.  This makes every other day a bit like Easter.  We have enlisted the help of local kids to stalk the chickens like little ninjas to find the day’s haul.

Once the nest is located it is best to put a “dummy egg” or two in the nest .  Chickens are dumb, but they aren’t that dumb.  If they go to lay a second egg in a nest and find the first egg gone, they will move on and find another spot to lay….this results in more  ninja neighbor kids stalking chickens…  You can see the problem.  For crying out loud, I have a zoo to build….I can’t keep hunting down dang eggs every day.

Most of the summer we have had a chicken with a cozy nest spot in the corner of the old root cellar nestled in my lilies.

Gus Egg 001

 

Lately though the dummy eggs were coming up missing…what the heck?  Is there a fox stealing the eggs?  Some other predator?

Sissy and her trail cam to the rescue!  Within minutes we had our perpetrator.

Gus Egg 013 Gus Egg 004 Gus Egg 003 Gus Egg 002 Gus Egg 014

That fuzzy little butt looks awfully familiar….GUSGUS!!!!!

Remember what happened to the chicken caught eating eggs….

chicken in the pot

GusGus

Our dogs and cats are our personal pets and not “exhibit animals”.  That doesn’t mean you won’t see them bopping around the farm but interactions with them will be unlikely.

GusGus is quite the character.

halloween costumes2011 008He never really liked his role at the Cook Dollar Barn.

GusGus and BigGuyHe is much happier as a farm dog.  

He and Walli are half siblings and are Pembroke Welsh Corgis.

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Corgi’s are herding dogs and this is one area where GusGus is superior to his sister.  He absolutely – positively – LIVES for chasing Feta back into the pasture. And squirrels into the trees.  And naughty ponies away from the fence.  He is the talker of the bunch….sassy even.  He has a bark that makes my ears bleed.

All his flaws aside, he was one darn cute puppy!

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Sophie

Sophie is the newest (and LAST) dog to come to the farm (at least for a long long time).  She is another Great Pyrenees. Because logic says, if you have one that doesn’t work for it’s intended purpose, you should get another one.      🙂

Sophie is a working dog and as such won’t be an “exhibit animal” but since she lives here on the farm, she gets her 15 minutes of fame!

Great Pyrenees, ginormous white slobbering dog, cook's country connection

So here was the thought process:

  1. JaiJai needs a partner.  The corgis are too small and just not that much fun for him.
  2. Hopefully this one will have some natural instinct.  (Cuz it’s pretty darn obvious that he doesn’t.)
  3. If nothing else, we have provided her with the farm environment she needed.

See – perfectly logical.

Great Pyrenees, ginormous white slobbering dog, cook's country connection, petting farm, Look how happy that JaiJai is!!!

Thus far we haven’t been able to really test Sophie’s aptitude for the whole Livestock Guardian Thing yet – another visit to Dr Fisher at Vermilion Vet Clinic to take care of this no-risk-of-having-puppies business and we will be on a roll.

great pyrenees, petting farm, big white dog, ginormous white slobbering dog,

We will keep you posted!

Jai

JaiJai  (short for Ginormous White Slobbering Dog) joined our family the summer of 2012. (Click here for the first post about Jai, “What You Should Know About Great Pyrenees”.)   He is a giant white adorable ball of horribly naughty fluff.

Our Great Pyrenees are working dogs and not “exhibit animals”.  Unfortunately you won’t be able to have this monster on your lap, but then again….is that really unfortunate?

Great Pyrenees, big white dog, cook's country connection

The Great Pyrenees, as a breed, are NOT for everyone and they were NOT bred to be pets.

Jai Naughty

They are livestock guardian dogs. (Here’s the Wiki link for more info on the breed.) In theory, anyway.

llama, great pyrenees, big white dog,

They bark, they are stubborn, they wander, they jump,

Jai Jumping

they do things on their terms,

Great Pyrenees, cook's country connection

and as I have said before, you will spend more on grooming than you will spend on your next car.

Great Pyrenees, Dog, White Dog, Cook's Country Connection

Jai is a dog that someone decided they just had to have.  And then sadly they decided that he was too big,

Jai Lois

OR he was too loud, OR too strong,

Great Pyrenees

OR too expensive to feed, OR too energetic, OR too destructive,

Jai Stanley OR waay too much to groom OR some other such thing….  And so, they left him tied to a tree to die.

Great Pyrenees, kiddie pool, white dog, cook's country connection

Thankfully he was rescued from a certain and unpleasant death.  Jai will spend the rest of his days here on the farm.  He will never be “without” again.

Great Pyrenees, bone, dog

BEWARE:  Here is where I jump up on my soapbox:  If you are going to get a pet for your family research the species and the breed.  Be honest…will you have the time, money, energy and space to share with this new member of your family for possibly the next 15 years or more?  8 MILLION dogs  are killed in this country EVERY DAY.  And frankly I just can’t adopt any more.

Hopping off soapbox now…..

great Pyrenees rescue

Jai n Sophie Logs

great Pyrenees

PS: Take a ride up the driveway and see Jai’s favorite perch in this cool YouTube video.

Chop chop. Loveyabye!

Meet Walli!

This is the  first in a series about the critters and plants that can be found at Cook’s Country Connection.

Our dogs and cats are our personal pets and not “exhibit animals”.  That doesn’t mean you won’t see them bopping around the farm, but interactions with them will be unlikely.

walli, corgi, cook's country connection, pajari, girls
BALL??

Walli Pajari-Williams is an almost 4 year-old corgi that was the mascot and general manager of the Dollar Barn until it burned in 2013. Lois is a dog lover, and wanted a pet that could go to work with her, since she spent more time there than at home. Having always admired the breed, she contacted local breeder Janelle Johnson of Riverwind Kennel, who has also become a dear friend.

What’s with the name? She’s a girl! Lois also always wanted a corgi named Wally, but the only puppy available at that time was a female, so we researched females with that name. Turns out the Duchess of Windsor was named Wallis Simpson.

And the Williams? Well, for a time we (Lois and Laura) threw around the idea of changing our last name. Nobody can spell or pronounce Pajari (PIE-ree) anyway, and it’s a pain in the butt. Lois decided on Williams because it was easy to spell, pronounce, and had no obvious cultural background. In fact, it is the second-most common last name in America. So we tried it out on the dog. Several months later I (Laura) met my boyfriend and his last name was Williams…so we decided it would be creepy to take his name (even if we saw it first) at that point.

walli, corgi, cook's country connection, pajari girls
She even made the papers this time!

Walli even has her own Facebook page, which she used to win a fundraising contest for the local shelter, Contented Critters. Fans mailed her $ from ALL OVER THE US! It was pretty awesome.

corgi, walli, great pyr, great pyrenees, mastiff
Good luck, big dogs; she has no idea she is “medium-sized”.

Corgis are working dogs…that means they are highly intelligent and need a “job” to keep them busy. At the store, she played fetch with young and old, and we nurtured her obsession with THE BALL.

walli, corgi, dog, singing, howling, pajari girls, cook's country connection
And she sings, too!

Her other big “job” at the store was to sing Happy Birthday to anyone that visited on their special day. She can’t wait until we are hosting birthday parties at Cook’s Country Connection!

  

Friend her, if you haven’t already. Chop Chop!! 🙂 Here’s a link to Walli’s Facebook page.