Wednesday, December 31, 2008

and the snow keeps coming down down down

and as i watch it

i wonder if bernie will be getting home tonight
or will he be staying with the fleet

it's sticking

and it is steady and heavy
and i can't see the woods out back

the duckies were slightly apprehensive about crossing the expanse of the frozen snow covered driveway......

after all there could be killer WHALES under that thar snow
just waiting for little tender duckies to walk across it

there weren't............ what a relief

and the duckies are safely in their day pen
which is almost draft proof
but well ventilated........go figure

meanwhile in baby chicken news........
chooks run wild......

actually they are outgrowing this brooder pretty fast now
and they are trying to get out
i keep finding one or another of them perched on the edge...............

they are still not sure but they are getting closer!!!!

chooks are getting BIG now
3 roos definately
3 hens definately

and one that hasn't declared itself yet
could go either way

i suspect it is a roo though

so that is my little snowy world today

happy new year everyone


Tuesday, December 30, 2008

And while we’re at it…………..

(this was typed last night in 'word' which accounts for the i still can't reach the shift key well......word does the capitals automatically)

How about life paths?

I kinda figure folks are where they are supposed to be at any given moment…….
This isn’t a predestined thing by any means
I do feel there is a plan to it all, in spite of the evidence that the universe is being run by chickens……….MY chickens apparently, Larry, Moe and Curly the roosters

( watch now…we got a NEW generation of roosters coming up …..but they are going in the freezer)

I also figure that if you follow along with that sort of reasoning……
There is no reason to envy anyone anything
And also there is no reason for jealousy

( although I will occasionally confess to produce envy……when I can’t get sweet peppers cheap and the garden ones are a bust)

I suppose this all goes along with reflecting and assessing where you are in your life RIGHT NOW.
And trying to pick up the threads and follow them to see if there is an overall theme

It does seem like the time of year for it doesn’t it
And in light of a poor economy, more then just me will be thinking this deeply

I still desperately want my farm and my animals home
I am so worried about them, I wake up at night thinking of them

I am, - I would imagine a hair closer,
as we are paying down the mortgage here…….and finally fixing the house up

I realized that I could use this property as a microcosm of a farm
Work out some of the details here on a small scale
Which is what I have been doing
It’s fun most of the time…..except the ticks and the mosquitoes
(which brought me to lyme disease…..or would that be brought TO me?)

I know so much better when we do move what I need to do to get the results I want

( see this sort of all goes along with the other philosophical writings I been doing lately)

however I don’t believe that staying in this house is good for us as we age
I don’t think it is a good house to grow old in
Nor do I think that this area is safe anymore
But back to life paths
I think that your life path is just that …….YOUR life path
And that sometimes if there are constraints, well maybe that helps narrow the choices down to a amount that isn’t overwhelming?

I know in art school we were taught to give the client THREE choices
Because if we gave them to many……they couldn’t make up their minds
It was too much
Too overwhelming
I think that is the same with life

I also think that it takes a very lot of personal knowledge to survive a place of unlimited and overwhelming choice

Sort of like a kid in the candy shop………..too much candy will get them sick

I could be wrong


Now as of this morning ( I wrote the above last night)
I dreamt of a person that I used to know…….. a LONG time ago
Three times this morning I woke up from a dream only to fall back asleep into that same dream
I dreamt of Lucy Depadova, she is the mother of a boy I went out with in high school.
I loved her dearly
I hope nothing happened to her as the world would surely be a much poorer place withOUT her light in it

(*** thank you so much sjanova for finding that typo, i was still asleep)

Monday, December 29, 2008

traditional times of reflection

there are certain times in our lives
and points during the year
where it is traditional to look back and reflect on what has passed
to assess the validity of actions and choices
on one level, life does simply seem to be a series of choices
with some random events thrown in for variety

i do believe there is a point to it all though

and part of the point i am beginning to suspect, is in the choices we make
ultimately most of these choices won't matter,
such as .............. 'do i have water with this supper, or tea'

'do i have time for a nap'

'should i send for this magazine'

some of course are totally life altering........

'do i move to brazil?'

'do i have a child'

i can't help but think that all our choices are strung together and that after our earthly life is over,
we get to assess them on another level

i also wonder why so many 'change your life' and self help books abound
aren't we making changes daily?
with every single choice we make?

now in my life
i have lost numerous friends this year
some to death
some to 'their season or reason' was over in our lives

i have had new friends come into my life

i have raised yet MORE baby animals
(seems to be a yearly thing now)
and indeed currently have baby chickens that i am arms length
( 4 roosters in this batch it looks like)

the ducks were a LOT of work
and absorbed me totally but i am very pleased with how that worked out
for the most part

i adore the girls i kept
they are a source of wonder to me daily
and i love watching them waddle in and out from the house to their little day pen, they have such purpose in their walk

i am also learning that i can and DO make excellent decisions for us
carefully weighed
so far the majority have worked out to our benefit
the thing that is continuously amazing to me is that i can actually think something up
and have it happen

as an aside, that would be represented by the tarot card 'the magician'
***making physical that which was only thought- or taking from above to bring to below***

this time of reflection also traditionally involves resolutions
which i don't really think work for most people

i think a resolution should be more like an evolution
but what do i know

i don't do resolutions
however i do have lists of things i think may be important to accomplish this coming year

but the list is not set in stone
some things drop off and some things make it on there
and some things vary in importance

a rough list for me now is

get a new mattress for us ( 28 years is way too long even for a sterns and foster)
put in fruit bushes, elderberry, blueberry, cranberry, blackberry
get the duck pen finished
and add a chicken coop
finally get the kitchen done
now......if the economy turns around......MOVE
if not
replace the studio windows and reside afterwards
make a nice cold frame......maybe not a hoop house as i have been hearing of collapses
but a nice LONG ( possibly down the north line of the property) cold frame

reorganize not only the studio
but the basement
get more bookcases

get my flour mill and more grain storage

on my list is also a trip to lancaster for bulk canning jars again
this time i want jellies, 10 oz, 12 oz and gallons......
( the gallons are for juice and grain storage)

now i also have some 'i would really like to..................if i get the time'
i would really like to sew more
i would really like to go back to making dolls
i would really like to get back to illustration
i would really like to read more
( ok so that last one is sorta not a i do read a LOT..... but suddenly after 20 years of almost total non fiction, i find myself wanting to read some fiction and reread literature.... i do love my dickens)

i think at this point in my life
my overal goal is
a quiet peaceful life
with home grown food
and home made entertainments

a hands on, handcrafted life
where i am involved in all aspects

there is nothing wrong with a consumer driven life
but it isn't the life for me

happy new year everyone


Saturday, December 27, 2008

on being well read and a bibliophiliac

i was given a wonderful christmas present by a friend of mine,
a gift certificate to a bookstore!

she said when she gave it to me, 'you are a voracious reader, and extremely well read, what else would be perfect for you?'

that got me thinking.....
what DOES it mean to be well read?

does it mean a LOT of books
a lot of diversity in your reading?
or a reading list of books from all the ages of man and writing?

from the greeks down to present?

and the books themselves, there is NOTHING like the feel of a finely bound book
the sound of the paper and the smell of it all
the weight in your hand
how the pages turn, if they are easy to read
it begs you to sit in a comfortable chair with a good light, a purring cat, and a beverage........
alone but filled with the heady excitement of an unread book
you have no idea yet what delights will unfold between the covers
what worlds you will travel to
what inroads this book will make on your mind, or soul
an insight into another's mind and world
a way to touch someone else intimately without even knowing them on a level that is at it's purest

some collectors only collect finely bound hardcover editions
i can see why, as the CRAFT of a finely bound book is extraordinary
the perfect weight of paper, so that the text is easily read and no bleed through of text from the backing of that page
the type face, a serif face, that is easily and rapidly read
the open air at the margins, for a breather
hand marbled endpapers, hand sewn signatures
all things about a finely bound book is a feast for the soul as well as the mind

some rare books
and i will soooooooooooooooooo admit for a lust for rare knitting books
that any edition of some of the ones on my list would be more then welcome.....

some, like me are much more interested in contents for the most part, i need to READ THEM
and WILL buy used reading copies just because of the need to read
i am not a snob when it comes to my books
hardcovers sit next to soft covers next to 'reading copies'
***a 'reading copy' is a batter old book but you can read it and after all isn't that the REAL point of being well read?***

i know some of you will suggest using the public library
and i have at times
if it is 3am
and you simply MUST reread a certain passage from a CERTAIN BOOK or be denied sleep for the night............
libraries don't quite do it then

i have often however done inter-library loans when i am trying to track down some obscure stuff that i can't find anywhere
hints and references to other books

the references of books to other books always intrigued me and i realize that before there was 'the WEB' there were the books

so now
on my shelves you will find some of the greeks, more then a smattering of history, classic literature, science, the natural world
modern fiction and science fiction, horror, philosophy, as well as cookbooks, craft books, (and various how to books) gardening, animals, new age, ghosts, holidays, books on collecting books even!
and in defiance to purists, you will find plato happily co-exhisting in the same bookcases as harry potter, and charles addams

I wonder if the authors are somehow aware that they live together on my shelves in a relationship that makes sense to me, if not others?

i do tend to feel a bit guilty about the amount of books i have, and the amount of MONEY invested in what for the most part, will never return the investment in funds
but i can't help myself
it is an addiction
an obsession
the need to read
to devour a book
some people need other things
i need books

and i have learned
if you TRULY wish to know a person's soul
browse their library, the breadth of their titles i think
shows the secrets that they don't even realize themselves

who has now got some new books to read!!

Friday, December 26, 2008

did you all have a merry?

i hope so
we went to see a friend of mine a bit south/west of us
we had a blast
i hope they had as good a time

we did get home late
i took yet another fall out back on the way to the duck pen
the alien ice patch from hell is back

today i am going to clean the kitchen
and maybe go to the feed an grain
and possibly borders since they are having a huge sale

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

happy holidays everyone

i wish you all the merriest of holidays

i am in the kitchen, ( so what else is new)
baking cookies
and such
we are going to a friend's house and i am so looking forward to it

bernie put a small tree up in the living room
very simple....NO ORNAMENTS for thaddeaus to get into

and the halloween tree up in the studio
for me

we got through the ice storm and it's warm out
so i imagine that tomorrow the ducks will enjoy their day as well

(although cleo is a bit broody and stole everyone else's eggs.........-ever hear a duck say MINE MINE MINE................. let me tell you)

i hope santa brings you all that you deserve
i wish you happiness and health for now and the future
take good care everyone


Tuesday, December 23, 2008

it's that special time of year

seed catalogs ARRIVAL!!!!!!!!!!
the new one from baker creek rare seeds is full color and HUGE
i kinda miss their old one but this one is really nice, more like a magazine then a catalog

as always seeds from italy leaves with a VERY LONG list and wishing for a LOT more garden

fedco is on the must order list as well, after all they have my long pie pumpkin seeds

my tenative plans for this year
expand the 'greens' deck garden
put more of the eggplant, peppers and tomatoes in containers i can move around, and possibly in a hoop house

grow the butternuts on trellis, that sorta worked well last year

MORE green beans (merchant of venice, white seeded is my very favorite, and it is a yellow bean...sorta tastes like vanilla to me)

more cucumbers for pickling ( national pickling and boston pickling.....although i did enjoy the booth bay blonds i got last year.....i don't remember planting them though

sand bed for carrots and other root veggies
i want to put it in a very raised bed...... like 18 inches if i can, i may have to container this

move the pumpkins to the front lawn, after i start them inside
i think i am going to start several pumpkins and just plant them around all over
when the mice plant them they do very well!
the deer don't bother them either so that is part of my plan

so far i have been glancing through the catalogs
sort of making notes in them

i want to start the leeks in the basement window soon and get as much growth on them as i can before they go out in very early spring

due to not feeling as up to par as i should......the fall garden never got properly cleaned up this year
so early early spring it is

however as i clean the duck night crates i think i am going to just put that directly on the beds
and add the leaf mold in the spring when i cultivate them

as for now
my little garden is neatly tucked in under a blanket of snow
and seem that spring is a LONG way off


Sunday, December 21, 2008

ah.....2am, we meet again

tonights middle of the night visit is brought to you by


in a moment of insanity ( that has to be it)
i gave into bernie's plea for junk food
(commerical odds and ends...... shrimp and some other stuff)
they were on sale at sam's club
FIRST mistake

he wanted to have some tonight ( lastnight?)

SECOND mistake

i said yes and i had a few tastes

THIRD mistake
i started my doxycycline tonight

here i am with heartburn

i can't take anything even if i had it in the house
as i am on the lyme meds
so i am sitting up
laying down makes it much worse

i already stoked the stove
i am pretty tired

but here i am

oh well

bernie got home from work around noon
he made sure the lot was cleared and the fleet rolled

i asked him why not let his crew do it
he said he didn't want to replace a clutch in the plow truck

when he got home he used the snowblower and cleared the driveway
i had shoveled out to the day pen
he made it wider

i tried to shovel the driveway but it's pretty big and i didn't get too far

a shear pin went on the snowblower
we need to get it NOW
cause this winter is going to be bad
and if we don't have one we will be screwed with all this snow

cleo put herself in the night crate
she dropped TWO EGGS
i was wondering where yesterday's egg was
well that answered me
i know there was NO eggs in that crate
i picked that duck up and she was NOT hiding an egg under her wing
when she came out of that crate i nabbed two duck eggs

that duck worries me

as does the weather
and the day pens

i had gone looking for the clear plastic to act as a wind screen in the day pens
couldn't find it
i need three rolls of it
i also need about a dozen hay bales at this moment
hay is now over 7.00 a bale
i am hoping to find it cheaper but i don't think so
maybe out at the farms if i can get out there
i wished

if i could find it for around 3.00 a bale i would take the dozen or so i need

cleo would like her day pen again



Saturday, December 20, 2008

white stuff all around EVERYWHERE

and deer tracks in the yard

i called bernie and woke him up
poor guy is exhausted
he just crashed
well sure he's exhausted he was on the go so early yesterday
i feel so bad i woke him
he was totally out of it
and i could tell he was sound asleep
i spoke to him a few minutes and he's awake now

my eyes are swollen!
trying to keep them open and keep glasses on them is very 'interesting'

and i have to go out and shovel this way?

i am trying to figure out a way to shovel a duck path
and get everyone out
i have to put the girls in the back pen
that's the only way they can lay their eggs
and i can GET THE eggs
i have that temporary day pen for falstaff.....i kept it mostly clear of snow on the lattice/tarp roof
and now with the snow it's totally draft proof!
i'll be trying to get them out in a few minutes
i should make coffee huh?

i should do that
i came down
stoked the stove and called bernie

i forgot me!
i got to get a pot of coffee on
if we lose electric
i won't be able to have coffee
so maybe i need to get a perculator or something......

the woodstove is such a blessing
i love it so much
it not only keeps us warm
but it's got a cheerful fire
it's winter security
even though the wood brings in ticks
one of which GAVE me this nasty illness
but it's still a wonderful thing to have a woodstove

i got to get coffee now and get out in the snow

til later


Friday, December 19, 2008

and the storm begins

i came down at 3 again
cold and pain got me up
so i am stoking the stove
bernie came down after me
sure enough
light freezing rain
he's leaving now for work
and will probably not be back until saturday
( i know....i wish he'd stay home too but he is very aware of his fleet must roll, since it is the only neonatal as well as the 911 fleet, i guess if you were waiting for 911 or if it was your'd want the fleet to roll too)

i of course will worry until he's back home again
which probably will be tomorrow
although i hope it would be tonight but i would rather he stay there and be safe

i had a few days reprieve from pain..... but it's started up again
so i start the antibotics today
everyone told me that they are going to get me really sick
that's ok......there is an end to that

ok i want to talk to bernie

Thursday, December 18, 2008

and then she hit a wall

well i been waiting for the western blot lyme test to come back

the doc called
the lab screwed up
did the wrong test
they will now do the western blot
while we are waiting she is going to treat me
i pick up the meds tomorrow
meanwhile she is leaving for vacation
so i won't have the results back until after the holidays

i had a good two days
yesterday was really good
today not so much
i woke up tired with muscle pain again

and right now i could sooooooooooo just go to sleep
i have to wait for bernie though

in duckie doings

one duckie is either holding out on me
or really really good at hide and seek

she is hiding eggies
i found one in each of the preferred nests
but i have THREE DUCKS
so someone ain't giving it up for momma

bad duckies

cleo is still telling me off every morning
today was of course from her nest while waiting for her egg
i swear that duck cracks me up
everyone needs chickens and ducks
they are such funny little birds
i got cleo tonight as we were going to 'bed'
and put her on her back laying in my arms like a baby.......
AND she just laid there like a baby
for all her complaining........she is still a sweetie
all of them are

in chicken news
marguerite crouched today so i am hoping for the start of chicken eggs
i miss my brown eggies
poached on sunday morning
my baby chooks are doing well
i am going to start tapering off the brooder light
they are looking like real live chickens now

and since they are buff orpingtons
they are golden!
who wouldn't love golden chickens?


storm coming

or so i hear from bernie
as i am practically amish i don't know!
( no tv, no radio, no kidding)
so i am going to pack his emergency bag today for him to take down tomorrow
he said he is going to come home early....( yeah right)
and bring in wood and get milk
meanwhile i will trim my lamps
add more oil
get some bricks to warm for the chooks brooder just in case.......

here's my list for his emergency bag:
underwear, 2prs
socks 2prs
teeshirt 2
sweatshirt 1
long john pants
long john shirt
snow boots
soap ( our soap, since he can't use commercial and we don't use shampoo just our soap)
shave cream
tooth brush and paste
hotties ( disposable hand/foot warmers)
jar of chicken ( home canned just in case)
book ( he's reading a ww2 book at the moment)

i really hope that it isn't necessary but he spent two overnights last year due to weather
one he didn't listen to me
so he spent it very uncomfortably
no clean clothing, no toothbrush etc
and NO FOOD........
although they put him up in a hotel for the night

poor guy was miserable when he finally got home

now i insist he take his bag, and he listens now

he is getting smarter as he ages

ok now the house preps
well we will just make sure we have enough wood inside and the deck stack is full
actually it warms UP when it snows so that is enough
i am more worried about getting the ducks to the day pen and back
last winter it wasn't an issue because serafina and falstaff actually lived in that pen
but now since a predator got serafina i won't leave anyone in there overnight
and the temporary pen here next to the house is not big enough for 4 ducks nor is it tall enough for me to get in there and gather eggs
i will find out if it is sturdy enough to survive the snow

if not then i don't know what i am going to do
probably move falstaff in and out of the day pen
and put the girls in something in the house
taking them out for grazing daily
i don't think the winter pen is going to be finished in time
and even if i put up a dog kennel out side
i still have the snow load/roof problem

the thing that really sucks is, the day pen is now very well insulated,
it's got enough extra bedding that rain water won't flood it
it's supported and tarped enough that the run is also dry
but it isn't secure enough against predation

and even if we put in a secure coop
i would still have to get out there to let the ducks in and out of the coop
and change the water daily
add food and treats and take them for walks

i am hoping that at our next house
we have a bigger deck.......cause then i can put temporary pens under that without worry
here our cess pool is under our deck so no day pens there



I had to edit this to add
we got more then enough food etc in the house
so shopping for a 'storm' isn't something we do
about the only extra i would need is milk and or icecream
bernie will pick up the milk

as to the snowblower

he's got that in the basement so i can't get it out
it's a troybilt from when you could only get them from the company......all metal
and i can't move it out to start it
once started it's self propelled so i can use it
i think we need a tool shed huh?

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Things I have learned to be true

  • You never have the yarn you need for a project, no matter how big your stash is, there is always one that you NEED for the next project and don’t have. ( and right now that is fluffy white angora for a brim and lining on a winter hat)
  • Ducks can and do tell you off, and it is as funny as hell when they do it
  • So do chickens and it is equally funny
  • Any sentence that includes a chicken is just inherently funny, but the really FUNNY thing about chickens is their LEGS-cracks me up every time
  • No matter how many cookies you bake…… you always find out that you should have baked just one more batch/kind
  • It takes me about 10 days to properly appreciate an event
  • Hanging laundry on the line is a very satisfying thing to do….just not my underwear
  • The night you have the WONDERFUL amazing dinner ready by 7pm, the husband will arrive at 8, tired and hungry but just wanting to eat and go to sleep
  • Dishes will multiply if you leave even ONE in the sink at night……don’t do that, trust me they will breed, and in the morning you can’t even FIND the sink…let alone the faucet to draw water to make the coffee
  • If the phlebotomist tells you ‘you are going to get a hemotoma’ believe her, and don’t USE THE ARM.
  • Remember, this too like corn and diarrhea shall pass, some things don’t pass soon enough, and some too quickly but all things do change
  • Laughing really IS all it’s cracked up to be…… do it often and with your whole heart
  • The only difference between and experienced knitter and a newbie is, the experienced knitter knows how to fix their mistakes, they still make them
  • The knitter thing can go for a metaphor for life as well
  • Squirrels may be pests at the bird feeder but they sure are funny to watch

this mornings post is sponsered by ICE

we had ice
more snow
and then more rain

bernie told me this morning

'don't bring the ducks out'

what am i supposed to DO with the ducks?
they don't have inside pens
just night crates

he went on to say

'it is a sheet of ice out there and you will fall'

yup sounds about right to me

i have decided that i am going to walk WAY AROUND and open the pen doors

then let the girls out

falstaff is easy.....he's right here by the door

the girls nope

cause the winter pen is laying under a tarp all walls and joists very neatly stacked in a pile

a few things are holding it up
metal mesh for under the floor
and a means to level it

so now i am going out
i do NOT plan on falling
but i AM going to be wearing a LOT of wool just in case
so even if i do fall
i don't stick to metal
sticking to the ground.........well probably
i tend not to be able to get up

wish me luck

ps: good thing i finished that knitted balaclava last night.....even wove in the ends
the ducks are going to be terrified
but i will be warm

pss: it's bad out, but not as bad as it could be..............
i didn't fall for which i am greatful
cleo of course told me off the whole time
including from sitting on her nest waiting for her egg

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

the list for today

bernie took the cookies off to work today
naturally it was pouring rain like crazy

i haven't spoken to him yet about how'd it go

i am sure he is thrilled with his shop tray as he loves chocolate and i put extra on his tray

on my list today is ducks, dishes, laundry and knitting!!!!!!!!

i am going to sit a lot of the day and knit


i am knitting a balaclava sort of after the one at knitting in color
it gets COLD out there so a balaclava is it

i have to get a ball of mohair , maybe a few
i may get a fuzzy mohair just to line the inside of the hats i do for going outside
and i may knit a hat with ducks on it
cause you know......i wear it out to take care of the ducks!
( actually i love color knitting and it's warm so for fun......DUCKS!)
i probably need a new 'in town' hat as well

knitting is pretty slow these days
but that's ok

i am thinking of needle felting one as well

3am and stoking the stove

it was really warm here last night
almost 60!
so warm that i could NOT get the woodstove to draft enough
so i got as good a fire going as i could
and went to bed
3am it's getting cold in the house

yup time to stoke the stove
and as it was a 'cold' fire
i am sitting here waiting for the new fire to take off well
it looks like it is trying to so maybe i won't be up too long

i am waiting the results of a lyme panel
although the pa lyme association said that the doctor should be treating me
i had called and asked for the antibotics
and she told me until the test comes back no
our old doctor treated me as soon as i walked in with the ticks
( that was like 9 years ago......too bad he doesn't take this insurance)

we had another doctor in nj that wouldn't even order the lyme test, he told me that pa didn't have deer tick!

so far me and all the uphill neighbors have had lyme at least once
and a few had undiagnosed lyme that cause a lot of problems a few months after the initial infection
needless to say
i am very concerned about no antibotics yet
it's i think 5 weeks out from that last bite
i have i believe a total of 10 known tick bites
never mind how many of the little nymph bites.......only ONE of them did i actually find
they are about as small as the period on this sentance

i have woken up sometimes in the morning to a tiny bite with blood streaks all crusted up from it

so i imagine that would be the smaller ones

oh and i did get a very large hemotoma from the lab work
well that tech did warn me i would

she was right

til a more reasonable hour


Monday, December 15, 2008

cookies are done

bernie takes the trays to work tomorrow
they look so pretty with their cellophane and curly ribbons
i made cute little hang tags for them with the name of the department they go to

it's warmed up here today
i expect we'll pay for that one way or another
with cold weather and or snow

i am so hoping that now that the cookies are done
things wind down around here

i am looking forward to a nice winter knitting
by the woodstove

dreaming of turkey poults and ducklings and chooks dancing in my head


they took it all

my blood that is

i was to the lab
9 viles of blood

this is the pcp doctor not the vampire doctor

all this cause i got a bulls eye rash on a tick bite??????????????????

gimme the damn drugs and let me keep SOME blood please

and i thought the tick was blood thirsty..........

i do not do well without coffee in the morning
i do worse without coffee and with a duck telling me off yet again
cleo marching purposely back to the day pen
throwing insults back over her shoulder

i better bribe them all with raisins or something equally good

in duck pen news
bernie got yet another wall done
(not up mind.....but framed on the ground)
i think we are ending up with this being like a diy kit
he framed in his first window
my duck pen will have a better window then any of my HOUSE windows are (it is energy star efficent!!!!!! we paid 15 for it brandy new from the lumber yard..... it was a special order someone didn't pick up)

maybe i should just move in with the ducks?
they would be delighted
as long as i brought some nice cabbage for them

ok todays agenda
if i have enough blood left to send to my brain and convince it to operate my

1) them damn cookies......finish them or toss them to the wolves....i HATE COOKIES NOW

2) laundry, finish that

3) dishes...... bernie was home for the weekend.......enough said......

4) clean the duck crates, before they weigh more then the ducks do ( great for the garden though)

5) try NOT to get a hemotoma in my arm where they took all my blood....... should i just laugh now? ( she told me i would cause she felt it.....and i am, and it hurts)

6) wake up..........i can't wake UP....... it would be advisable to awaken prior to driving but i had no choice this morning

7) roast a pork loin......with peach sauce...... THAT is actually going to get done

8) finish knitting my balaclava cause.......well baby it gets cold outside

ok that is more then enough right?

i tried to get up at my normal time this morning..... 4:30
i managed to go pee
even with cats hanging over my head..... tapping my nose
meowing LOUDLY in my ear
flipping fluffy tails into my mouth
i could NOT get up
this as most people who know me......................know

it not normal

and much as there are times i would love to take it easy
i got too much going on.....and i get too bored


i am thinking of laying down as i type this!

well actually i better get another cup of coffee and start my day
after all it's only the crack of NOON



Sunday, December 14, 2008

cleo is not a happy duckie

yesterday and today
i was sorta late getting the ducks out
i slept in
i was tired
can't a body get tired

try telling THAT to a duck
yesterday all three cussed me out and complained all the way back to the day pen
they were pretty good about coming in..........

but again today i got cussed out going out
and coming in........
cleo waddled in front of me......crest up
turning her head to throw 'weepweeps' over her shoulder at me

i am lucking i didn't end up on my assets again
i was laughing so hard

it was extremely clear that ms cleo was NOT happy with the laxity of the duck attention over the weekend

and she was going to tell me

the other ducks have also told me
but not with the extreme feistiness of ms cleo

yet when i picked her up to give her a cuddle
she laid her little head down on my cheek

she melted!

now in chicken news........
i am thinking i may have 5 roos
oh man i hope not
i was hoping for three hens at least

the babies are growing nicely
i am trying hard not to get too attached as the roos will be in the freezer
i don't like it
but we can't keep the roos
bernie wants to 'sell' them
you can't GIVE them away

so they will make a trip to the nice chicken processor and end up back home with us
in a ahem........seperate and slightly colder location in the cellar......
next to the icecream


til next time

talking turkey.....ahem.....i mean chicken

i love that chicken chart

here are a few other good links

chickens are great
i love mine
i have buff orpingtons
the reason i haven't talked about them too much lately is cause raising baby anythings take up a LOT of time if you do it right
and i been raising duckies

right now i got 7 new chooks in the brooder downstairs
i know at least 3 are for certain boys
i am iffy on the 4th one
i think i got 3 hens out of this batch of chickies

and this spring they all go out
into outside poultry housing
plus i want three speckled sussex just to see how they are

for pure all around i love my buff orpingtons
but it's only fair to see if there really are any other breeds that may be comparable

ok now as to raising them
i do start the chicks on starter and i do use the medicated starter
so far ***knock on wood*** i haven't lost a chick yet
so i think that's good

when they are bigger i will switch them over to maintaince or layer depending on how old we run out of the chick food

i also give them scrambled eggies...... and tell them

'don't worry chickies......that's aunt martha, we don't LIKE aunt martha.......'

i feed the adult birds either layer or maintaince depending on if they are laying or not
and give them oyster shell, granite coarse sand,
table scraps
and i will flip them a burger during molt as extra protein

i hang cabbage leaves for them to play and peck at too
they like tomatoes....... raisins
all special treats for good chickens
they adore bugs and wormies and grubbs

and will eat mice if they can get them

their manure adds to the compost in the garden as does the ducks....( ducks are for slug control)

and of course we eat the eggs
my orps lay brown eggs
i love that

chickens need a draft free, dry, and secure coop
and a secure run
they also need a break from laying occationally

i recommend them to folks
as they really are wonderful pets
they know their names
they come running when i call them
some like to sit in my lap
some are a bit more standoffish

but all are just amazing to be around

they all have their little personalities.......each one different

i have had chickens for about 3 or 4 years now ( i had them as a kid too)

and now i hear........chickens are the new knitting!
well i have often sat and knitted while watching my chickens
and my ducks

i am thinking.....................
next it just has to be a few turkey.........


and so it starts

maybe i should start a 'buy vi a farm fund'

Saturday, December 13, 2008

back from easton

we got shrimpies for christmas eve
( i make a sorta shrimp scampi over angel hair pasta.......instead of the traditonal 7 fish)
i saw shrimpies bigger then my FISTS there
4 to a pound!
them's some big ass shrimp

we got shrimpies that are 25 to the pound though
we got all sorts of goodies
pork loin
chicken breast
locatelli cheese

we got bernie new muck boots.....(which really are snow boots )
and new work boots
and new sneakers
he also got two new sweatshirts

oh and if my typing is's because FAWN is sitting on my chest

could you all say hihi to fawnie?

it's cold again
i want to find some more warm stuff for me to go out with
i freeze my buns off out there
NOTHING is warm enough
i layer and layer and nothing is warm enough

i am almost to th e point of a mohair suit i swear

bernie is watching his christmas present
the last movie from the pirate series

i am typing and fawn is moving up and down on my chest while i do this

i got to hug one of my CLEAN duckies today
i swear those little things just wormed their way into my heart
i love them so much
if it wasn't bad for their health i would put diapers on them and bring them upstairs



todays agenda

apparently everyone does have an agenda

here is mine for today

feed store: wild bird seed and a bale of hay
post office: pick up....( i have stuff to go out but lazy ass me didn't wrap it yet)
lowes: builders sand for the chickens and the path to the duck pen, salt for the conditioner, more wood for duck pen
bank: pay the mortgage, deposit check

i need to make more cookies.......
bernie ( and me too) have been eatting my sugar cookie angels faster i swear then i can bake them
man they ARE good
but i got to get his trays done and out to his job
enough already with all these cookies around here
somehow it's been harder and longer this year

i got up this morning to thaddeaus sitting on my head
and fawn staring down at me
apparently the woodstove was out ( coals only)
they were not happy

they mounted a protest...........ON MY HEAD

then thaddeaus decided to keep slamming the bedroom door shut
and then racing around the room to finish by jumping OVER us in the bed
so he sorta stomped on us a little bit too

we got the hint

we got up

i got the woodstove going.....and i am waiting for the chimney to heat while i am typing this

meanwhile the cats are staring at the store

listen, i know that cats sleep 27 out of every 24 hours a day
and i know the way to a cat's heart is through the heat of the woodstove
but occationally........ rarely........
i do like to sleep in

would someone inform the chickens and ducks?

Friday, December 12, 2008

duckie disney land

it's been raining
and buckets for DAYS AND DAYS
the basement is flooded
part of the duck pen is flooded
the yard is flooded.......well you get the picture

i put up the duck pond
it's the smaller kiddie wading pool from kmart
i think it holds like 30-35 gallons total ( on flat ground.....not sloping driveways)

well it is full of rain water.......enough so three little duckies jumped in and took a bath

did i mention that they did this while the temps decided to plummet
and while it was starting to snow
and hail a bit

and that since i had to be there to watch them
i got a bath too????????

and three little duckies did NOT want to get out of the frigid water

i put my poor long suffering bare hands in the water to retrieve the duckies

not once


can you say ' not of sound mind?"
yes i knew you could

i am STILL waiting for my hands to turn back into a more reasonable color

i am expecting that by morning we will have a skating rink out there
and the bucket i left in the duck pen will have frozen to the ground

in 'are you ready for the holiday' news
i am not
it is going to be a halloween christmas this year
long story but
we are going to be hanging pumpkins and spider webs on the christmas tree

doesn't EVERYONE?

til next time