Friday, March 23, 2012

Rain, rain, and more rain!!!

It has been raining buckets for four days now. It's my girls spring break, so they have taken this indoor time to read the Hunger Games trilogy. A few weeks ago Dave found some wild onion in the yard which got my brain spinning. After reading the Hunger Games book myself I was inspired to start foraging. First I researched and found an Oklahoma Cherokee indian recipe for wild onions and eggs. Then I remember the first homesteading book I read and how I wanted to make dandelion wine. A trip to the library and these are the two books I have so far. The Foxfire Book of Wine Making is hilarious. It's from the late 1980's, it is recipes and memories in the Appalachian tradition. The interviews are a hoot!!!! The process of wine making like the old timers seems simpler than what I have seen on you tube. I can't wait to give it a try! So tomorrow morning Dave and my little one are going fishing and mommy is off to forage the in-laws acreage! I am looking for dandelions and onions this time but in early summer I will go back and look for wild strawberries! I thought being stuck inside with all this rain had made me crazy! Maybe it did, but crazy could be fun ☺

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

No Baby :(

I checked on Squirty before going in to cook supper and lets just say I renamed her Hannibal Lector! All I could say was Oh No! Oh No! My husband was like don't freakin' cry! I am not sure what happened to the egg, I won't go into details but it was fertile and it got broken. Honey would lay eggs in the nest that Squirty sat in so one of them could have stepped on it in the shuffle. Who knows. I gave her a bath. If you haven't given a chicken a bath it really isn't a big deal. And dried her with a hair dryer also not a big deal and put her back in the coop. She is still broody, I am going to try and make her snap out of it. Any advise would be much appreciated!!! I am disappointed we won't have a little one but I can't wait for my chickens to all be normal again :/

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Squirty Update

Squirty is still sitting on her EGG, yes that's egg. One wasn't fertile so it blew up in the nest. She is a very good sitter she never gets up so I take her out once a day to poop, stretch her legs, and get something to eat and drink. This picture shows you what she does when you open the egg door, she fluffs up, flattens out, and makes a crazy gremlin noise. My youngest gets a kick out of this and drives that poor bird and me crazy by opening the egg door ten times a day.  I miss her running around the yard with the others, but since the fox incident I am glad she's been inside. I candled the egg, which is something new to me but there is definitely something in there! Next Sunday will be 21 days I am hopeful all goes well and we'll have a new baby chicken ♥

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Toughen up

Yesterday was the most gorgeous day. 80 degrees sun a blazin' I was actually sweating sitting on the porch. I let my chickens out as soon as I got home, no big deal, this is what we do everyday. They roam around our yard for 12 hours at a time on the weekends. Who knew this beautiful day would change what we do forever. Dave pulled into our driveway slowly as usual in case the dog or chickens were in the way, his coworkers were admiring our blooming fruit trees and as he looked over at our chickens he witnessed one being snatched by a fox. I had come inside to cool off and was looking at my favorite homesteading writers blog when Sunny died. From all of the cuss words that were coming out of Daves mouth I thought he had ran over one of my hens. He came bursting in the door to tell me what he just saw, by the time I got outside he was bringing me her dead body. I guess when he saw the fox take her he slammed on the brakes, jumped out of the truck and chased the fox through the woods which scared the fox so it dropped her and ran. At first I was mad and then I started bawling. I couldn't quit and I guess it was loud. Two of our neighbors came over to see what was happening. After I calmed down (a little) Dave and I went into the woods to find where this fox lives, I could have strangled it with my bare hands at this point. The time in the woods made me so mad at myself. Why did I leave them outside while I was inside on the computer? Was looking at her blog so stinking important? My poor husband had to listen to me sob all night. I feel a little guilty today, I was so consumed with sadness that I didn't think to ask him how he was. He had witnessed it. From that short moment of time I feel so violated. I won't let my dog off her leash, my poor hens are cooped up with no chance of release until the fox is caught or we build a run. Life around here is altered. I know it's "just a chicken" but it was MY chicken. Because I took this so hard, last night my husband said "you aren't a farmer"  but this morning he looked at my puffy red eyes and said "you are a farmer who cares too much for her chickens I will get that fox" I love my husband for understanding my feelings towards my animals, they are mine to take care of and if something goes wrong its my fault. I also love his machismo, he will get that fox I have no doubt about it! 

Monday, March 12, 2012

RIP Sunny

Rest in peace Sunny. You beautiful, curious bird. I am so sorry I couldn't save you. The time we had with you was great! You were a constant joy to watch. The fox that took you from us will pay. You will be missed. :'(

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Rain is a good thing!

Dave (my husband) built this bridge a few weeks ago out of wood from his work ( they were going to throw it away). This bridge cost nothing to make except time. I am so proud of my master recycler :) Thanks to last nights rain there is water babbling down the rocks to a huge puddle that will one day be our pond. Such a peaceful sound with the birds chirping and the water running. How lucky I am for this moment!

Tuesday, March 6, 2012


This is one row of my plants I started from seed. I have two more rows just like it. Where oh where are they going to go? I think I have gone a little NUTS!!!!


My youngest daughter coming home from school and sitting in our shop holding and playing with a baby chick for hours. This is one of the many reasons why I do this

Sunday, March 4, 2012


grape vine
The last few weeks have been busy. We planted some grape vines, built a chicken tractor and bought some meat birds. My seedlings are doing great. I repotted them this weekend I was going to make newspaper pots but realized I didn't have enough newspaper. (I have 132 plants) Its nuts and I don't know how this happened but I am going to share with family and friends. My chickens are keeping me busy. I thought Sunny was missing so my husband and I hunted for her for 30 min. I checked the coop and thought she wasn't there but when my husband looked she was on her roost and upon further inspection  I realize she was about to lay an egg from her roost! This explains all the broken eggs I thought were Winnies! I yelled to my husband that she has an egg coming out and he caught it! I guess she has been laying for a couple of weeks and we didn't know because all of her eggs have been broken. Which stinks because it was the biggest one we have gotten so far. Coop renovations are in our future. My favorite little hen Squirty has gone broody. I have been so worried about her she is so young and she is brooding over the faux egg in the nest. Today my mother in-law brought me two fertile eggs to put under her. So a new learning experience is on the home front. Stay tuned for updates on this new adventure. Hopefully all goes well.

meat birds


This weekend my very creative and talented daughter Haley captured the beauty of our Bradford pear tree :)