Saturday, June 26, 2010

catch up again

It has been a haul.  Trying to catch up with everything and the blog has paid the price.
I still have a chicken killer.  It snagged Puff, the original tree chicken, out of a tree one of the nights I was at work.  When I came home on Friday, Sarah kindly informed me that there was another dead chicken in one of the nest boxes.  It turned out to be one of my Buff Orpington hens (original chicken lineage).  She was the one who had egg duct issues that I thought would die.  So now I have a whopping 17 laying hens left.  I still have all 11 of my babies and they should start producing in a couple of months.  They are out with the other chickens now and a new pecking order is being established.  I had Sarah leave the dead chicken out in the chicken yard and shut the yard gate.  This was so I could be sure that my killer could not get past the electric fence.  The dead chicken was undisturbed this morning.  So I will just start locking the outer gate at night.  That way the chickens are not trapped in the coop until we let them out.  They can just leave the coop at the crack of dawn and wander the yard.  I will start watering the chicken yard so the grass will keep growing.  I also spent part of the last two days using the weedeater (I had to borrow my parents, I break them, had to fix this one twice in last two days) to create a kill zone around the chicken coop.  I am hoping to make it uncomfortable for the killer to return.

If you look on the right side of the picture, you can see how high the grass is.  Today I cleared a 10 foot swath all around the coop and made all the tall grass you can see on this picture go away.  The weed eater finally gave out on me.  The things make me crazy.  I have already broken two in the last 3 weeks.  I had to shut it off today to refill the gas and could not get it restarted!!  So instead I went out and chopped down thistles (broke the blade chopper head yesterday for the weed eater) by hand until dinner.

The sheep are doing great.  I cannot for the life of me figure out why everyone isn't in love with baby sheep?  They are the cutest little stinkers.  We keep catching them and petting on them. Here is a picture of Lucky, the multicolor ram.

Annmarie named the black one, Blackie.  Not very original, but easy to remember and he is going to be food so a simple name is better.  No name is best, but that didn't happen.  We don't get to touch these babies very much any more.  They are quick and jump and leap around.  Plus, we don't have anything they want.  So for now we will bide our time.  Our first baby, Hershey was the same way and he eats out of our hand now.  He really likes corn, they all do.

Here is a picture of the coffee girls.  Annmarie took this out our front window, the sheep have been banned from the front yard.  Yes, I realize that they were mowing the lawn, but they were also using the back porch as a bathroom.  But most importantly they think roses are a delicacy.  They were going to kill my roses if they were not ejected from the yard.  They can come back in the fall when the trees and bushes are dormant.  

Annmarie drug me out of bed early this morning.  Early being a relative term, it was late if we were going to make the swim team practice, but since it is a weekend there is no practice.  So she drug me out to go to a tool sale/yard sale.  I picked up a large crowbar for $4 and the find of the day!  I bought a 1 gallon coffee container full of old hand drawn reclaimed nails for $15.  Total gold mine!  I was happy.  We drove to Pendleton and by the time all was said and done we visited 12 different yard sales.  We picked up a few goodies and I found a solid metal hammer with forged handle for $4 (another killer find).  We spent all morning doing that and had a good time.

The nails are 1.5 inches long.  They are going to look great in whatever I use them for.  The gal that we bought them from said her husband used to take down old buildings in the midwest and reclaimed the nails whenever he demolished a building.