Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Hosed

I hope everyone had a really nice Christmas.  I felt very lucky this year – I have a job, I’m relatively healthy and I got to spend the holiday with my family and friends.  It was perfect.


It’s funny how priorities change as we get older  laughing

On a not-so-wonderful note - last year my snowblower died.  When I took it in to get it fixed, I was told that it would basically cost as much to get it fixed as it would to buy a brand new one.  I opted not to get it fixed.  Instead I went for a cheaper solution – I decided to get a blade for my tractor, which not only saved me a lot of money, but it also gives me more use out my tractor than just brush-hogging.  It is working out great for clearing out my driveway - once I figured out a good pattern.   Plus I’m practically able to make a five-lane highway out to the chicken coop – no shoveling or lifting involved!  There was a bit of a learning curve to get the blade at the right height where I wasn’t tearing up all the gravel in the driveway, but still removing as much snow as possible – but I think I have it figured out.
In theory, I had the perfect plan. 


In reality, something always goes wrong for me. 


The power-steering hose broke, so until I fix it, I have to hope that we don’t have any significant snowfall.  I was hoping it would have warmed up a bit this weekend – I don’t have a garage, so I have to wait for the weather to cooperate before I can work on it.  My fingers are crossed that I will get the tractor fixed before the next big snowfall – I really don’t want to have to shovel if I can help it…

My bleeding tractor

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Much

There has much been going on around here the past few weeks – I wish I could say it’s all good, but it seems for every one thing that goes right, two go wrong.  Oh well, what can you do?

I’m not even close to being ready for Christmas, but I think I should be set by Friday if everything goes smoothly for me this week… I hope.

Instead of trying to put everything into one post, I’m going to break it up into pieces.  So to start…

…as I alluded on Wednesday – I have acquired a few more chickens.  Five more to be exact.  I now have a Black Star, three Rhode Island Reds and a Polish chicken added to the clan.

I’ve never had to integrate chicken ‘families’ before and I have to say, it is an interesting process.  My biggest worry was that there would be an all-out war between them.  As it turns out, they pretty much don’t want anything to do with each other.  It’s been over a week now since they’ve arrived and a couple are beginning to mingle – but only a little bit.

The Newcomers are definitely a bunch of wimps when it comes to the snow.  My gals are practically trying to break down the door to get out when they see me – despite their hesitancy when the snow first came, they have no problem now going out in it to explore.  But even before they discovered the joys of snow, they would still play out in their pen - the new Ladies don’t even want to leave the coop.  I guess they didn’t at their old place, either.  I’m starting to see a couple of them venture out now and again, but for the most part, they like to stay inside.  Wimps.

The one I really feel bad for is the Polish chicken.  Her name is Polska.  She had a friend named Polski, but she was killed by a fox    Anyway, she gets soooo picked on by her old coop-mates.  She arrived missing a lot of feathers and doesn’t look very pretty from the backside.  She is very skittish around the other hens – and understandably so.  I’m hoping in her new environment and with some potentially new allies, she will be able to recover from her injuries and calm down a bit.  I can’t do much while I’m at work, but I’ve been trying to monitor the situation as much as I can while I’m at home…

 Wimpy Chickens!

 Poor Polska

 Not a bad looking lady!

Rhode Island Red and Black Star

 My Ladies hangin out

 Look out, here comes Pumpkin!

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Nothing

Nothing is as soft as the new feathers growing in from a molting chicken…

Nothing makes one back up their computer faster than the sound of loud clunking coming from their hard drive…

Nothing makes you clean your house more than the threat of company coming over…

Nothing tastes better than Thanksgiving leftovers…

Nothing is so depressing as the sun setting at 4:42 pm…

Nothing makes driving suckier than having a pickup truck with no 4-wheel drive and the roads covered in snow…

Nothing is prettier than freshly fallen snow when you have nowhere to go…

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Thanksgiving

Due to various family members’ schedules and circumstances, we celebrated our Thanksgiving yesterday.  At my house.  Quite an interesting proposition, considering I don’t cook and there are presently a lot of remodeling projects going on in my house…

I am happy to report that despite it being very cold and windy, the day was a success.  It was a really wonderful day…it was so nice to have all the family together at my house for a good meal and fun.

There was plenty of room and everyone chipped in with dishes to serve, but the Pièce de Résistance was the Garbage Can Turkey  

If you remember, we tried this over the summer at my sister’s house and it turned out great… but there is a little more pressure to have a good turkey on Thanksgiving…  unsure

The first hurdle was the fact that my fire pit was filled with water from all the rain we’ve had lately, so I had to come up with an alternate location for the event.  I chose the entrance of a three-sided shed I have on my property.  It was very cold and windy with a peppering of snow yesterday, which added to the challenge, but I used a piece of plywood for a windbreak which helped a lot…

The beginning of the cooking...

 

 ... a couple of hours later...

 

 Can you hear the juices sizzling?

 

 Ta da!

It turned out perfect!  There wasn’t much left at all at the end of the night. 

That’s bad for people who like leftover turkey  laughing

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Molt

Molt

Well, The Ladies are definitely molting - there are feathers everywhere!  Watching The Ladies walk around is almost like a cartoon – they literally leave a trail of feathers in their wake.  The brown chickens look pretty much the same except for white patches here and there.  Nugget looks like she lost a few pounds of feathers...  I tried taking pictures, but none came out any good 

Along with the molting, egg production has dropped way down.  Instead of getting four to five eggs a day, I’ve been getting one or two – and one of the two has been crushed most of the time.  I think that either someone needs to lose some weight or they need to be a bit more careful when maneuvering around in the nesting box.  I’m going to add another F5 bar and add some more padding in there…  hopefully that will help  crossed fingers

 

On a side note…  when I watch TV, I like to leave the closed caption on.  It helps me catch a lot of stuff I’m sure I didn’t hear right.  It is also pretty entertaining on it’s own.  When watching this week’s episode of Chuck, there was a scene where the good guys were taking down the bad guys and one of the bad guys was having his neck broken by a good guy (that sounds a lot more violent than it was rolleyes ) – the caption at that moment read “sudden squishy crack'”.

Hmmm….  I guess that fits.

I suppose when you really think about it, it could be kind of hard to describe sounds of what’s going on to people who can’t hear  shrug   laughing

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Scare

I am normally not a fan of Holiday Creep, but today I didn’t mind it – Thanksgiving stuff is half price already!  Thanksgiving dinner is at my house this year, so I saved a bunch of money today 

 

I felt so bad for my chickens yesterday…  when I went outside to lock up the coop for the night, I was surprised to hear the ‘coo’  of one of my Ladies when I walked out the door.  It was already dark out and normally they are all tucked in for the night just after the sun goes down, so I wasn’t sure what was going on…

I picked up my wayward Lady , who was nestled under my back stairs and carried her back to the coop  - the whole way, wondering/worried if a fox or raccoon had gotten into the coop and got to the ‘flock’.  When I got to the coop, I saw that the wind had blown the door to the pen shut (and it was windy yesterday!).  Poor Granola had gotten locked out before she got inside for the night      When I put her in the coop, I only saw three other Ladies inside…  Pumpkin got locked out too.

In a way, this totally make sense – Pumpkin and Granola, my Red Stars, are the two rugged chickens out of the group… they will milk every last second of daylight before heading in for the night, so it makes sense that if the door closed at the end of the day, they would be ones locked out.

So next was the task of locating Pumpkin in the dark.  I was kind of surprised that both displaced chickens didn’t stick together if they thought that they were going to be stuck outside for the night.  I checked every place in the yard that I thought a chicken would roost for the night – I had my flashlight and called and called my normal “Heeeeey - my chick-chick-chick-chick-chickens!” call, listening hard for an answer.  As time went on and I was running out of places to look, I was starting to panic.  What if something had gotten her?  So I did a second sweep of likely places and lo and behold – I found her sound asleep on my lawnmower   rolleyes  

I was very happy to reunite her with her coop-mates.

I am now being much more careful to make sure the door to their pen is propped open very securely when I let them out.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Science Fiction?

When I think of science fiction, I think of outer space, aliens, monsters, horror movies, evil scientists, the paranormal – that kind of stuff.  I love science fiction 

We have a SyFy channel that one would assume is dedicated to just that – science fiction shows.

What does wrestling have to do with science fiction?  I know it’s fiction, but it’s not science fiction.  It’s like the way BBC America has been featuring Star Trek: The Next Generation… that show isn’t British at all.   Who decides this stuff?

Anyway, I don’t think that SyFy should carry wrestling 

…And while we are on the topic of TV, I have another favorite commercial to add to my list

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Happy Veterans’ Day!

 

Let Freedom Rule

Thank you to all who have served or are serving in our military

stars n stripes forever

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Saturday Bullets

  • An update on The Ladies' sleeping arrangements…  it seems to be changing every night now.  They are all over the place – sometimes all on the nesting boxes, sometimes all on the roosting shelf sometimes they are split.  Cocoa seems to be the Problem Child.  To me it looks like she’s the one next to one other Lady while the rest are somewhere else.  And it looks like a different Lady draws the short straw each night.  We’ll see how it long it takes for them to fall into a pattern again…

 

  • So we decided not to go to Rolling Hills for the tours that they were offering during October.  It sounded like the tours were more of a haunted house type thing, so we are going to try and get ten people together for the minimum required and go on one of their regular historical tours.

 

  • Elections were pretty much a bust for me.  Mostly everyone I voted for lost.  Everyone complains about how high taxes are and how New York politics don’t do anything to help the average citizen or move the area ahead at all…  and yet all the same people are voted into office year after year.  How can we expect things to change for the better when we don’t put people into office who want to try and fix things?

 

  • You know how life has it’s peaks and valleys?  I feel like I’m in a valley right now.  A lot of things aren’t going right and the rest are a big struggle.  I’ve had tough times before for sure, but this feels different.  Worse.  I sure hope that things turn around soon.

 

  • Tonight the clocks get set back to Standard Time.  Why is it when we gain that extra hour of sleep, we don’t notice it all – but when we lose it in the spring, it feels like we lost six or seven hours of sleep?  Ugh.

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Happy Halloween

Pumpkin Carvers

 

The result

 

Happy Halloween!

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Voting

So someone at work asked me who I was voting for next week and I told him.

“Why are you voting for xxxx?  They are going to lose!”

 

…Do people really vote like that?  They vote for someone only because they think that they are going to win?????  If so, that could explain a lot when it comes to the world of politics.

blink

Whether my guy is ahead or behind in the polls, I vote for him or her because I think that they would be the best person for the job and that’s who I would like to see in office.  I can’t  believe that anyone would do otherwise…

Oh – and the guy that asked the question?  Yeah… he doesn’t vote  rolleyes

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Monday, October 25, 2010

Miss You

Today is my Dad’s birthday. 

He would have been 72 today.

Happy Birthday Dad, I miss you…

Dad

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Ridiculous

DSC07244a

 DSC07245a

 DSC07246a

 DSC07247a

DSC07251a

 

I had to leave - I was laughing so hard, they never would have settled down for the night  laughing

(to understand why this is so funny, see the two posts before this one)