Thursday, January 22, 2015

Icy but busy


Lovely Frizz, she is a fantastic girl

What a new year it has been. Birds getting moved, rabbits getting their hutch adjusted, slipping and sliding about on flows of ridiculous ice. Peg is learning to stand and cruise. Walking is just around the corner, heaven help us. She gets into things already just zooming around crawling. We are sure to have our hands full.
Part of the flock

Monday, I cleaned out the chicken coop and nest boxes, they were a week or more past due. The floor was just plain nasty. That being said my version of just plain nasty isn't really all that bad, I just like my coop as clean as I can keep it. Mucking it out took less than an hour, the floor has a full bale of shavings from Runnings on it, and the nest boxes are full of chaff hay. I'll probably need to clean them out and rebed them as the pullets and cockerels I moved up from the turkey tractor seem to think it is a swell game to yank the stems of hay out.

My beautiful mottled girl

Another project that was undertaken by my siblings and I was the rearranging of the pullets, cockerels, Laura, Reggie and the peahen. I was having a misery of a time trying to get up to the small barn the pea was kept in. So, Alan, Becky and I moved all but Laura, Reg and one small bit of a pullet up into the main coop. There was the expected scuffling and pecking as the order was reestablished. Laura, Reggie and the single moved into the grow out portion of the rabbit hutch. That is, by the way, working out surprisingly well. I think perhaps the solution for where to put the bantie pair is to build them their own hutch like coop.

Nesting EE hen, she lays fantastic huge eggs

After that we all trekked carefully on tip toes up to the pea's barn. Peafowl are friendly group creatures and after the loss of Mr P she'd been on her own. We caught 'er up and moved her down into  the now empty turkey tractor, got her a pan waterer and a feed stand and several chunks of hay. She is now very happy and chortles to me when I come in to feed or water. 

Some of the youngsters with my Wyandott and a Cochin

The husband and I are looking for incubators to get started on hatching chicks. We'd like to hatch out our own Cochins, and some production layer crosses. This will mean we need to build ourselves some brooders for after they hatch and some more coops, as we have to sort the cochins from the rest of the flock. A friend of ours is helping us sell eggs to friends of his, so we have a little income from all our girls. IF we can hatch out enough cochins we'll keep what we want and sell the rest to get a bit of buy more birds money. (Granted we also plan to buy more young birds anyways, but it is nice to get a bit of money first).

Miss Peahen, perfectly happy 

Today, I already have chores just about finished. I'm going to borrow the parent's Durango. as the brakes in my Jeep went around the bend, and go get my hair done and do some grocery purchasing. Peg's other grandparents are going to watch her for an hour or so to give me a baby squawking free shopping and hair doing experience. I haven't had my hair professionally done since I was pregnant with Peggy over a year ago. The thought of a nice wash, trim and layer is just divine! Thank you darling husband for suggesting I go pamper myself for a little bit!

Tuesday, January 06, 2015

Winter is...

...My least favorite season. Chores take just so very long. All the waterers are frozen at least once a day, generally right thru. The livestock need so much more high energy feed. For the horses this means a bit of grain for the young, old, hard keepers etc. Fortunately we only have one youngster, and Sunny is needing a bit this year. I think his teeth need floating. With the chickens it means a extra scoop or two of scratch feeds added in on top of their normal fare. The scratch is at least the cheapest of their foodstuffs. Egg production is fortunately holding steady. Thanks to a dear long time friend in the city now that we have a bit of a back up so to speak we will be having a ready costumer base for eggs. He's already got more than I have sold...

The ice is just awful as well. Horses are stabled at the moment with no going out in sight. There is no way they can get down the hill and back up it with out either them or I slipping and falling. It is definitely better to prevent injury and vet bills or worse broken legs, which in me would just mean a god awful mess to deal with, and with a horse of 1200 plus lbs, even with the little 400 lb ponies, a certain death sentence. We love our livestock and I do what I can to keep them from avoidable health issues. 

Fortunately April is coming...all be it slowly.

Monday, January 05, 2015

Christmas Photos





Peggy's first Christmas was a great deal of fun for all. Now if only we could find her new monkey hat...

Sunday, December 14, 2014

Sunday Stills: Pets

The horses:


 Diamond, with husband and nephew


Sunny 


The Princess's new pony, Gambit

The dog:

Renegade AKA Ren, a few years ago. She doesn't hold still
for photos any more.

The Favorite Chicken:

Our Cochin Rooster Big Blue 

For more Sunday Stills 

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Holiday Time

Most years to a certain extent I look forward to the holidays. If for no other reason than that I miss seeing my family. This year however it is just drudgery. I'm simply not in the holiday/Christmas spirit. I'm tired and have felt horribly depressed the last few weeks. 



Fortunately we are almost done with our shopping for family. Just a few folks left, and of course some more spoiling of the Princess. 

I think part of my issue is that I just want nice weather back. I'm dying to get some candy onions in the ground, and I just can't wait to get back to working with the ponies. Now that we have a new pony for Peg we have just that much more to be done. Gambit will need to be bomb proof and then some by the time she is ready for him in another 2 or so years. That requires much training and effort. 



On the bright side December is passing quickly, and my hens are all laying fantastically considering it is the slow time of year for them. I'm just a little too ready for April :)

Tuesday, December 09, 2014

Birds

Spent almost an entire afternoon a few weeks ago trying to snag a photo of the female Cardinal that is enjoying mom's bird feeders. No luck. Any time I was ready with the camera she was no where in sight. O well, such is life. I will get one of her and the male and the beautiful blue jays before winter is over. I did get some great shots of the Tufted Titmouse, Nuthatches and Gold Finches. It was a wonderful way to spend the day with Pegs. 





Friday, December 05, 2014

More Photos

Gambit's breeder, Mel D, was kind enough to send me some more photos of his darling self from the past two years. So here everyone goes, enjoy!













I personally cannot wait to get him into the show ring. Also, I'm looking forward to the day Peg is big enough to take him on herself and enjoy that special bond between human and equine!