Monday, February 24, 2014

Wheeler Farm, Established 1887

Old farms should be cherished treasures.
Many of them fall into disrepair, and are torn down after their usefulness comes to an end.
Only minutes from downtown, Salt Lake City has preserved an old farm, established in 1887, and made it a place worth visiting.
It serves as a historic farm; with additions of simply additional old farm equipment and a graceful heart on barn front.

I think you can imagine why the barn serves as a background for a lot of engagement announcement and family photos.
Photographers and painters can find endless inspiration on any visit to the farm.

One really is welcomed to the Farm.
I am not sure how it is funded now, but we always just park and enjoy our visit without any money being exchanged for tickets.

Right next to the parking lot is a playground that probably would have astonished the farm family back in 1887.
It would have astonished this non-farm girl too, even as recently as my own 1950s era childhood, when playground equipment was metal and sparse.

I wonder if when he is an adult will he ever visit a "historic" 1950s era playground and wonder how us old time-y children survived hot metal slides and teeter totters.

Well, the scenery has not changed since 1887 I think.
No wonder the farm was established here.
A small stream runs through the property too.

The story book style Little Goose Girl has more modern clothes now and no bonnet covering her head.
How many hundreds of generations of children have chased a goose or had a goose chase them?

The goose and the child both seem friendly don't they?

They are nearly the same size but the geese run just a little bit faster than the boy can.

I crouch down low to get eye to eye with the geese.
Geese head and faces are quite odd when seen close up I think.
A white stripe, orange eyelids, and worn spot (?) on the lump above the beak?
Odd beauty indeed.

The boy and the geese both have orange accents on them.

It is nearly spring time and we saw many expecting animals and humans during our Saturday afternoon visit.
(Our purple jacketed dil is gracefully carrying our second grandson...)

Farm animals are great; for some reason, boys seem equally enamored with any thing that involves a wheel and a seat.

The gentle cows are used to small hands reaching out for an exploratory touch.

Cows are fine...but look!
There's that tractor that was such fun to drive last visit.

A far away look...where is he traveling to in his mind?

Everyone should know how to use a stick shift...

Nearby a horse watches us.

Ducks his head down into his feed and munches in a slow rhythm.

(I think the tractor wheel has gone flat....does one call Triple A for farm side assistance with that issue?)

Some of the farm equipment is quite inscrutable to me.
What. Is. This?
Besides just being highly photogenic.

A bar eyed goat with a heart on his head seems as interested in me as I am in him.

One stall over newborn goat triplets slumber in a heap.

The trees offer their own texture and color beauty.
Doesn't the bark almost look like wool?

Another tractor with another flat.
How did the farmers ever get any work done with such unreliable tires?
No wonder farm equipment often had metal wheels.

The drowsy pig looked at me briefly then closed his eyes and went back to sleep.

I laughed as an adult man peered at these animals and asked me what they were.
"Are they goats?" he said quite puzzled.
No, I told him.  These are sheep.
I pointed out the goat pens that were just up away.
(Meanwhile the not quite two year old gleefully was announcing each animal as we saw them and offering his own version of what each animal says.)

Luke sunk his fingers deep into the sheep's wool and smile.
I wanted to do the same but the sheep apparently likes children more than adult; I didn't get a chance to have a tactile experience too.

Two little black lambs peeked out from a stall, then retreated rapidly, then came out again.
A deep throated "Baa" from their mother called them back each time they ventured out too far.

There are so many varieties of sheep!

Only one variety of turkey was to be seen.
Bernie said they were ugly.
I think they are stunningly beautiful in their ugliness.

I had no trouble making eye contact with all the animals.
Look at those long eye lashes!

Everywhere geese were forming lines to waddle about.
Perhaps they like to pretend they are marching in a parade?

I confess I want to touch the shaded bill and stroke the satin looking face. 

Parents posed their children...

This lass kept looking warily at me instead of at her cajoling mother who was trying to get eye contact from her daughter.

A funny aside:
The Costco here sold a blue and orange ski style jacket last fall for a screaming good price.
Luke has worn his all winter. not Luke.
Nor were the other two boys wearing the jacket with baggy sweat pants Luke either.
I actually took a few photos of boys that were not Luke, fooled by their matching outfits.

This one was Luke.

Earlier in the day I had read an article about toddler tantrums that were sparked by electronic devices like iPads and cell phones being taken away.
I thought about the Museum of Toys that has a display of favorite toys and which includes a simple stick as one of the universal favorite toys.
Boys and sticks are so common, and I am afraid I have seen more than one child have a tantrum when a stick was removed from his hands.
iPhones, iPads, or stick playtime management is a parent issue I think.
When this guy walked by with a stick I had to take a photo.

Then these two boys raced by...
What stick play do you think they have in mind?

I hadn't noticed geese had chin waddles before.
Is it a gander or a geese thing?
And do the female geese worry about their chin line as they age like human females do?

We did a brief photo op.

It kinda went like this, with several more climbs out of Mom's lap.

Rachel smiles even as Luke struggled to slip from her grasp.

Photo ops...bah.
Now look at this!

A stick!
Everything is more fun when one has a stick in one's hand.

The sweet look of a female duck makes me smile.
Especially when they are walking with a dozen fluffy ducklings behind them; the mother duck's expression of modest pride is priceless.

Trying to photograph ducks mid flight is tough.
This was the best shot of the day.
Colorful things, aren't they?

The sun was weak.
The branches were still winter bare.

The best part about bare branches is that they do not hide the snow capped mountains from view.
I hope the long ago farmers took moments in their days to enjoy the winter views too.
And that they smiled at the things that we smiled at, finding joy in seeing young creatures, both human and animals, looking out and exploring the special world of a farm.


ellen b. said...

You got some great shots and angles. Looks like a perfect spot for your little grand to enjoy!

Vee said...

Wonderful photos to illustrate your sure do know how to weave a good one. Just wait until there are two running hither and yon...they'll be what we affectionately used to call "a baby and a spare." More little ones to go around is a good thing.

Rosella said...

Beautiful pictures Jill. Looks like Spring is near in your parts of the world! BTW - that photogenic rusty thing is a threshing machine and I remember when we used one at home on the farm (boy I'm getting old)!!!

Lovella ♥ said...

Beautiful photos Jill.. all of them. Luke and his mama are both so photogenic. I love the sweet deal on the warm winter jacket. An adult doesn't know what a sheep looks like? oh my...
Ah... see Rosella already answered the threshing machine question.

Judy said...

Thanks for the wonderfully illustrated farm tour! I think you'll have many opportunities to return...with another 'future farmer' on the way. :) How did Luke grow up so quickly?

Tammy Compton Hauge said...

Great post, photos and comments--now I can't wait to take my granddaughter here--she's going to love it.