Reflections of Summer

This morning marked a rare day off, sans kids.  I had a moment to reflect on a summer filled with work; most of my time spent away from our little homestead.  Sitting with the birds in the sun, many thoughts passed through me.  I let them come and go as they pleased.  I was struck…

A Day Of Rest

Fall is here!  Mornings on the homestead now necessitate a hat and sweatshirt. The first tree in the yard has turned. Most fall days are spent preparing for the coming cold but since Sunday is a day of rest; I will.   It is good to reflect on what we have done and all there is still left…

Spring A-Bread, Flour Back. Easter Bread.

After enjoying the new super moon/eclipse/equinox/Ostara day last Friday AND our tasty little chicken I thought it was time for some less gruesome kitchen activities. I love bread.  I think Dr. Atkins might be the devil incarnate but I have to admit when I follow his advice my butt shrinks.  Anyway… Bread. I LOVE BREAD.  I…

A Murder Mystery, Most Fowl.

Living close to the land reminds you constantly that death is a daily part of life.  The best example of this has been our experiences with the flock(s.) Our first young flock was decimated by a family of raccoons; two springs ago. One night 17 dead chickens. There were only three survivors. It was our fault of course, we…

How To Tell If You Are ‘The Crazy Chicken Lady.’

When two of your FB friends (who don’t know each other and live thousands of miles apart) post pictures on your wall of chicken sweaters; you know you might be a ‘crazy chicken lady.’   Before, I could say that those are “very cool and a little silly but that I’m not that far gone yet,” then…

Candy Boards And Frostbite. Ah, January In Maine.

Since the bees had such a hard time storing honey this summer and given the collapse of last year’s supper strong hive in February I think it is safe to say that I am dubious about these new hives making it to spring. We had to start feeding with sugar syrup during the fall and a few…

“Looks Cold…”

We had our first real snow of this year.  It’s really amazing that silently over night the yard can go from- to- I think the lettuce is finally done. The back garden is also out of commission till next year, season over. The chickens stayed inside for the first time in a long while to avoid…

New Layers And Old Favorites Made Easy.

After letting the larger flock out this morning I found two little green gems tucked in the corner. Judging by the size and location of these little jewels I believe them to be the first eggs of one of the new flock members!  The older ladies have a monopoly on the laying boxes so it…

Pumpkins, Beans and Porcupine Chickens.

Fall is in full effect and I am not going to lie, it is pretty epic.  One of the only times of year I don’t miss the redwoods. The garden has browned and is going to seed quickly.  We have learned a whole lot about what we can do better next year. All-in-all it has been…

A Chickie story

When I was young, my dad used to tuck me in at night and tell me a “Chickie Story.”  He would make these stories up on the spot with me as “Chickie.” Most of the time these stories consisted of him rehashing what I had done that day- only in chicken land.  A while ago I…

Spaz and Her Fortress of Spazatude

I have mentioned in a few posts that we have one chicken who has seceded from the flock.  Even though she has no problem getting in and out of the fences. Exhibit A: Recently she has decided not to return at night to roost.  The first few days of this new behavior I was worried when she…

Homesteading Math 101: Counting Chickens.

Does anyone remember that old riddle about how to get a cabbage, a goat and a wolf across a river with one boat? That is what it feels like we have been trying to do recently.  I have decided to call it homesteading math. With our final hatching of the summer now over I can finally count…

Why Did The Chicken Cross The Road?

Answer: Because, I was chasing it. Wait. I’m staring this story in the middle.  Let’s rewind to last month. Apparently, every year the day after Mother’s Day my husband goes ‘chicken crazy’ and cannot rest until we have acquired MORE chickens. We have been hatching chicks from our flock for some of Ry’s friends.  …

Your Free Range Days Are Over!

Last year we learned an important homesteading math lesson. (Chickens + planting a garden) x (no fence)= fat chickens/no plants. The chickens have been contained! It was time. I constantly worried about predators and neighborhood dogs (not to mention Isis) having free access to the flock.  We knew that we would have to build an enclosure…

‘Killer’ The Chick Vs The Invading Cricket Hordes!

20 days ago we started incubation on 41 eggs from the ladies, these eggs included parings from all four roosters so this was going to be interesting right from the beginning. The first bit of excitement comes on day 3 and 6 of incubation.  Lets face it-  most of the time the eggs just sit…

Your Time In The Coop Is Over- The Flock Has Spoken…

Spring rain! This is first bit of parsiptation I can remember that isn’t frozen, I had almost forgot what rain sounded like.  It is amazing to watch it melt the last bits of snow and hard to believe that spring could really be taking hold. Our preparation for this eventuality has been in full swing the…