Chicks are Out of My House

For that I am thankful.
I know people like birds as pets, and I’m happy for those who have them and love them.
Good for you. 🙂

I, however, hate the stink of birds in my house.
So I am glad to have the chicks moved outside to the brooder.
We have 45 in total this round.
We didn’t have as good of a hatch in the big incubator.
Only a 50% hatching rate.
But, I was able to identify a few things that I can work on for the next round, and hopefully that will go up.
A lot.

Next lot starts in a week or so…
I’ve got a couple dozen hatching eggs on order from the same Farm LemonChicken came from (I feel like I may have told y’all this already lol).
I’ll set those with a bunch of ours, to hatch out for our meat chick pick up day.
Assuming that still happens.
Money is funny right now, since Hubby’s work shut down for 2 weeks.
It is what it is though…we have no control over anything right now, except for our ability to grow food.
So that’s what I’m focusing on.

We Have Chirping

*Someone* is a real go getter.
Chirping started last night.
On day 19.
Someone is ready to take on the world!
I say “go you, little chick!! we’re gonna need more like you!”

I ordered my garden seeds today.
Almost everything I didn’t have for the garden already.
Still want to get onion sets and a couple trays of johnny jump ups.
But those come later.
At least for today I have filled the need for the seeds we were missing.

I’ve been out taking pictures too.
Like this lovely shot of Astrid…

While she looks like she’s drunk, she’s just having a darn fine nap.
I, however, will be drunk when I nap on the snow drifts.
😂😂😂

So far we’re holding onto our sense of humour.
Not gonna lie though, I’m angry.
I am angry as fuck right now.
I’m angry at how fast and willing society has dropped to it’s knees and accepted restrictions of basic freedoms.
My province is under a state of emergency, which means no gatherings larger than 50 people.
Only so many people allowed into grocery stores.
Only so much of any product is allowed to be purchased.
We’ve fallen far and fast and absolutely bloody willingly.

*Especially* when there are no answers on what comes after the 30 day state of emergency comes to an end.
Chief Health Officer of Canada say this could go on for 18 months…or more.
So yeah.
I’ve joked about burning it all to the ground and starting again, but that was to introduce *LESS* govt, not more.

For now my Hubby’s work is still operating.
But I don’t know for how long.
What I do know is this…somewhere down the line, people are going to get fed up with self isolating and social distancing.
Somewhere along the line, people are going to have to go back to work.
Mortgages will need to be paid.
Utility bills too.
Food will need to be purchased.

And then it’ll start again.

So, all I can say is this…
Take as much control of your food supply as you possibly can.
Now.
Grow your gardens, source your meats, consider (even in the city) raising your own food animals.
Maybe you can’t have goats, or chickens, but you *can* have rabbits and pigeons.
Squab is, after all, considered a delicacy to many.
Grow your own.
And learn to preserve it for winter.

My gut says we’re going to have to have as much control over our food as we possibly can in the coming months.
Hopefully, my gut is proven wrong.

Happy Spring

First day of Spring today.

My pepper seeds are popping up through the soil.
They’re up enough that it was time to turn the lights on.

Tomorrow night we take the turners out of the incubators and they go on lock down until hatching…which should start Sunday/Monday and finish by Wednesday.
Then we’re on a break until the 5th of April.
I’ll fire up the incubators again then, so that hatching will coincide with the delivery date of our meat chicks and turkey poults.
Yup, I’m gonna take the plunge and try raising turkeys this year.
Wish me luck!
lol

I’ve been reading Gabe Brown’s book “From Dirt to Soil” and had a bit of an epiphany when he talked about their personal gardens..

He talks about planting flowers in the food gardens to attract pollinators.
And the light bulb went on for me!
See, I’m a “grow all the foods!!” kinda gal, so I never really paid much attention to flowers.
But it makes sense that flowers to attract pollinators will help increase food crop yields, right?
D’Oh!
And then I started thinking about edible flowers.
Or flowers I can use in soaps.
Or feed to the poultry.
And then it made some sense to plant flowers along side my veggies.

So that’s what I’m planning this year.
I have an abundance of marigold seeds, so I’ll start a bunch of them in a few weeks.
And there will be, of course, sunflowers.
We’ll see what else I can find to add.
Hopefully some violas (johnny-jump-ups) because they re-seed and spread like crazy. And they’re pretty. And tasty too.
I may also let a mint run rampant in the garden too…

I think I’ll also be harvesting our dandelions a little harder this year.
Young greens for salads, older greens for cooking/canning.
Flowers for wine/mead.
Not the roots.
I tried dandelion root coffee once and did not like it.
Besides, digging roots takes away the renewable plant for other uses.
It’s an abundant resource we have, and I’m going to use it.

But for now, it’s just dreams and plans.
We’re still under a bunch of snow and will be for another month at least.

Happy Spring!

Dozing in the sunshine…

Sharing with Brian’s Home for Thankful Thursday…because I know how blessed I am to have, not only these resources to use, but the ability to use them.

Busy Day

I feel like I’ve been going non-stop today.

From getting the feed ready for chickens this morning, I don’t think I’ve sat very long at all.
lol
But we have fresh hamburger buns for supper, a chocolate angel food cake for dessert, homemade mayo for next week’s lunches, plus homemade coleslaw and dressing…
Then all the clean up to go with that.
Oh!
And homemade cream cheese made from last week’s left over milk.
YUM!

And I’m prepping the pots for pepper seeds.
Then moving things around for the incubators.
Yup, got my 80 eggs ready to set, so gotta get that going too.

At the end of it all will be a nice glass of green tomato wine waiting for me.
Aaaaannnd, I have to get that bottled too.
🤦‍♀️
That’s what I get for complaining that I’m having to wait too long to get stuff going.
lol

20 days to spring!!

Tomorrow…

Tomorrow we fire up the incubators.
I’ll have collected the last of the eggs I need to run 2 full batches.
In 3 weeks we could have as many as 80 chicks.
Depending on fertility.
There’s too many roosters in the coop right now, so I know just about every hen is getting a little lovin’.
😂😂😂
If the weather holds, there will be at least 5 less roos next weekend.
I have to count how many boys there are for sure.
I know the 3 big orpington/wyandotte cross boys are staying.
Everyone else is going to Freezer Camp.
That’ll give some of the “favorite” hens a chance to recover and regrow feathers where the boys have been a bit too exuberant.

But that’s next week.

This week, tomorrow, we set eggs for hatching.
And start pepper seeds.

Today?
Today we rest.

Ruby

Sharing with Word of the Day Challenge for Recover
and
Oak Hill Homestead for the Simple Homestead Blog Hop.

53 Days…

53 days until Spring.
Another month before we fire up the incubator. Still just the one…haven’t managed to get the $$$ together to order the 2nd yet.
I keep spending the egg money on things that come up…
Like new blankets for all before Yule.
Groceries when Hubby found a spanky deal on some veggies/fruits.
Feed, now that the layers are gearing up and laying more…they need more than just the barley chop and wheat so we’re mixing in layer feed now too…

But, I can still run batches of 24 eggs at a time.
And I’m waiting for some money to come in at the end of the month, so the next incubator should be ordered and arrive in time for hatching season’s start.

I’m looking out the window at our unseasonably, but oh so appreciated, -8*c.
Normally we’d be at least 10 degrees colder.
Of course, I’m also dreaming wistfully of the garden.
Unseasonably warm weather will do that to a Farm gal. 😉
We’ll start seeds soon though…right around the time we fire up the incubator.
So much life to start in just a few months!!

One of the best parts of this weather is how much less The Merry Mares are eating.
Hay consumption has slowed down, and for that I’m grateful.
They did decide to dig out the last bit of the first oat straw bale and have a bit more fun with it…


Astrid buried her head way down in there, looking for left over grain bits.

She was awful peeved that I called her ’til she lifted her head out…Sable dove into the spot she had been and probably found the tasty bits she was digging around for.
😂😂😂

And Ruby wore her straw beard whilst trying to have a nap…apparently I was annoying her again by taking pictures.
lol
Too bad for her.
😂😂😂

Sharing with Word of the Day Challenge for Wistful
and
Oak Hill Homestead for the Simple Homestead blog hop.