The last of the summer work

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Kupa resumes his role at the top of the totem pole.

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Speaking of poles the cats are using the resting clatter box as a pathway to the loft. No more climbing the ladder for them!xyabout-that-038 xyabout-that-035

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The chook house was cleaned out. John took over once he saw what I was about and he spread the debris over the hay field with the tractor.

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The chickens will be on strike for a while as there is nothing they hate more than change.  But now we are ready for the winter.

Today I will have a quiet day. I think.

I hope you do too.

celi

54 Comments on “The last of the summer work

  1. My chooks used to love fresh bedding – I’d be flattened in the stampede to get in and start turning it all over in their search for seeds. What they hated was my occasional scrub and hose ou to keep the mite population down – they missed the acrid fug of chicken poo… His Grace the Duke is looking more like his superb and arrogant self…

    • Yes they love the new bedding to scratch in but will take their time relaxing into the new box bedding and laying the eggs, usually only take a few days.. . it is their time off period anyway, all chooks need a break being so close to the shortest day and all.. c

    • I used to let them spread it! They loved to scratch through and by the time I came back to check their water it was all spread out for me!!! LOL

  2. It’s always a good feeling to get those chores done and not have to think about them for a while. Our cats used the hay ladder to climb into the loft at the other farm. Then we traded it for a cow as it was really too large for the barn there. Enjoy your quiet day, Celi!

    • I know, there is a bit of work involved in getting a property ready for the cold, next it is putting lights above the pump and de drafting Sheilas corner, she is so determined to stay there. c

  3. Have a lovely, quiet day, C, and wish one up for me, too…
    Planted garlic yesterday (that’s how behind I am!). Never done it this late, but we have to hope for the best 🙂

    • The struggling is mostly over now, I am a little sore today but needs must. Lets hope John gets a few more days off work this week!! c

  4. OH, wonderful news – Kupa on the mend and your worry about the chook house is over…. We are preparing for our 3 days of below freezing weather here in N. Texas. We don’t get these cold storms often, but when we do “PANIC” ensues …. My husband who lived in Maine 15+ years just rolls his eyes at us crazy Texans.

    • yes, we are dropping below freezing for a while too, though that is not unusuaal for around here, but it must be a fright for you down in Texas,everyone thinks of texas as hot with cowboys..or hot cowboys, whichever way you look at it.. c

  5. So happy you are ticking the chores off the list … soon you can start ‘chilling’ 🙂 Laura

    • This is a good question. Peacocks do not like to be held or stroked, (like bantams for instance) and so they have a reputation for being aloof, but Kupa will come when he is called (His call is Neil! Neil!) and has a rather disturbing habit of sneaking up on me, he is very nosy. Though you cannot get very close if you are trying to sneak up on him. But none of this behaviour could be called friendly. But they are all free, and never go very far. c

      • They’re beautiful. I heard they live very long lives. Recently we had a wild quail befriend us. He died and I’m surprised at how long it’s taking me to get over it.

        • wild animals and birds who pause with us are like little gifts.. peacocks can live 20 odd years in captivity, but ours are out to wander all winter (in summer they tend to eat the gardens!!) ..

  6. And Kupa reigns once again and there is peace once more in the farmy kingdom!!!!! Yay! 😀
    Feels so good to have everything in order. Here too! Now I can relax and just do my usual chores during the cold months. Like your nesting boxes! Look comfy cozy!
    Hope your weather holds out a while longer for you. Blowing snow here, but I think the snow is over for now. Going to be a very cold, snowy winter.
    Christmas tree is up and looks so beautiful and cheery! House all decorated and now the baking of cookies and fruit breads for gifts. Making wine bags for gifts too! House is puppy proofed and puppy shopping done! What a good feeling to be on top of things! Everyone wants gift cards this year! Makes my life very easy! 🙂
    Well, gotta go get busy! Love to all! Have a great day!
    Now when you rest it will be stress free. Stress makes everything so much worse.
    Love you Celi! (((hugs)))

    • I tend to bake things as pressies, but the problem is I never have an idea how long some of the stuff I make will last (shelf life) so end up to it last minute so it is fresh! Have a wonderful recipe for a Walnut and Cranberry loaf, which I will make three of on Sunday before Christmas. Other things on the list are Peppermint Creams and Coffee Meringues, all of which I have never done before so wish me luck!.

      • OHO, those coffee meringues sound good, I usually make tiny little meringues and store them in , but coffee ones sound so much better!c

  7. Tell the chooks their swanky new apartment is enviable and that their interior designer is underpaid!! Happy you’ll be quiet today. I need one of those…hmm…

  8. I love getting the chicken barn cleaned up and fresh hay spread all around. Our girls are off for a couple of days after, but they seem to flourish with the change. As you said though, winter season has them producing less anyway. Here in Oklahoma we are hunkering down with that arctic front blasting us with lower than usual temps. I have everything ready though!! I just get into my Nebraska frame of mind, and do what needs to be done, preparing for whatever we get! I think Arkansas will begetting the brunt of ice… I hope power outages are at a minimum.

    • I hope you can keep your power too, that can be quite a pain.. I am going to call my over -organising for the cold; : the Nebraskan Frame of Mind from now on. As in; I’m in a Nebraskan Fame of Mind this morning. It kind of rolls off the tongue and makes perfect sense all at the same time. Though I have never been to Nebraska or Oklahoma for that matter.. c

  9. Your chook house is so big Celi! One of the fabulous advantages of a big barn! Are the boxes on the wall to the right also nesting boxes in the picture with Boo standing under them? Today we do the same with our henhouse. Out with the old straw, scraping the floor and nesting boxes, and in with new straw. We harvested our meat chickens yesterday and have lots of food for the winter. Monday two of our pigs go to the abattoir, the first time for us! I’m a bit nervous about how we will get them into the borrowed trailer. No doubt I’ll have a tale to spin later! 🙂

    • You do NOT want to take anxious animals in to the abbatoir. So today Back your trailer up to the gate, escape proof it madly, and begin feeding them all in there twice a day. It usually only takes a couple of days to train them to jump in and out (I get an old door to make a ramp). Then on the night before, quietly get them in and seperate them (the hard bit) and leave those two to sleep in there for the night. Let them have water, no more food. They will settle right down for you. One year I put the trailer in with the pigs and fed them in there, it was convenient, however they chewed the brake cables and light wires right off. So use food, and train them to walk in. Easy peasy. c

        • We are so fortunate to have a mobile slaughterer here. Our animals do not get stressed as they are home munching away when their final moment comes.

      • Thanks for this advice Celi! We have the pigs behind electric fencing so we’ll have to pull the trailer in. That is after we can find a trailer to borrow. We had one lined up, but it fell through. Everything stopped when the storm hit, so we must make a date again with the abattoir. Sure do wish we had a mobile slaughterer like Emily has. I’m thinking that maybe I can spray the brake cables and light wires and anything else that might look delicious to pigs with cayenne pepper spray. That might keep them from chewing. Sure don’t want something to happen to a borrowed trailer!!!

  10. So glad you are/can take a rest day. And I haven’t told you, but I adore your shot of Marmalade in your header! What a doll!

    When winter comes and I can’t afford the extra straw, I use a bit in the chicken house, and for the run I use wheelbarrow-fulls of my surplus oak and maple leaves. They were almost a foot deep in the back yard this year! Those chickens really do enjoy a good scratch through them and they last nearly the whole of winter! (I compost the rest of the leaves for leaf mould.)

    • you are a bit like me.. i also scrape up all the fallen hay and straw from the corridors in the barn, new straw is not for the chickens, way too expensive, and with the hay tailings they get something to eat as well.. i also have friends who bring out bags of leaves for the chooks to turn into compost for the spring.. lucky you having so much in your own yard!

      • ” …lucky you having so much in your own yard!”

        LOL! You wouldn’t say that if you had to rake them all up… 😯

  11. So much work on the farmy, but you make it all seem so easy as you go day by day through your chores. I truly admire your life, your writing and all that you do!

  12. So glad you got your chickens set for winter. Do they come out when it is really cold? We had zero degrees F. this morning. No sign of the chickens. They stay inside….what a bunch of wusses. Yesterday my DH brought down the snow blower and got it tuned up and ready to go. Blade is on the tractor to plow us out this winter. We don’t get the snow like we used to here. So cold and no snow cover is hard on pipes and trees. I am so happy that Kupa is pretty much normal again, I would love to have a peacock, but I think the winters are just too harsh. What kind of chicken is your rooster? He is beautiful. Reminds me of my Auracana rooster that used to attack us and actually sent me to the emergency room. But he was sure pretty.

    • I have no odea what kind of rooster that is, I bought some chickens once and his grandfather must have got in by mistake, there are three of them now, all exactly the same! I have never thought of buying a rooster, maybe i should, we had no home hatched chicks last year at all.. The chickens come out in the cold but not the snow, they hate the snow!.. c

  13. I’m glad you’ve got John to give you a hand and that now you can take it easy for today. We’re of the same mind, though at a vastly different scale. The workers are finishing up and the yard and dog run are pretty muddy. Yesterday & today I spread 1000 lbs or pea gravel into the dog run but the yard will have to dry a bit more. If I try to do anything to it now, I’ll just uproot the lawn. I’ve still got much to be put away for Winter. All in due time. Enjoy the res of your day, Celi.

    • Thank goodness the worst of the work and mess making is done, now you can get yourself all stowed away for the winter.. thank goodness we are not getting these ice storms that are popping up all over the country.. c

  14. Thought you might like to have a go at these as you said “oooh’ when I said I was making them!
    Chocolate Dipped Coffee Meringues
    ¼ cup of sugar
    1 Tbsp instant espresso powder
    1/8 tsp cram of tartar
    2 large egg whites
    4 oz bittersweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
    Heat oven to 200F. Line baking sheets with parchment paper
    In a large metal or glass bowl, whisk together sugar, coffee and cream of tartar. Whisk in the egg whites
    Set the bowl over (not in) a saucepan of simmering water, cook, whisking constantly, until the sugar is dissolved and the whites are very warm to the touch, about 3 minutes.
    Remove from the heat and using an electric mixer, beat on low speed, gradually increasing the speed to high, until soft glossy peaks form, about 5 minutes.
    Spoon the egg white mixture into a pastry bag fitted with a ¾ inch star tip. Pipe stars (about 1 inch wide) on to the prepared baking sheets and bake until the meringues are just set on the outside, 25 to 30 minutes
    Slide the sheets of parchment paper onto wire racks and let the meringues cool completely. Slide a spatula underneath meringues to release.
    Melt chocolate in the microwave according to package directions. Dip the tops of the stars into the melted chocolate, letting any excess drip off, then transfer to parchment to set about 20 minutes. Place in small candy cups.

    • wow, I have never made meringue like this, i DO look forward to giving it a go.. thank you for the recipe!… c

  15. What an interesting read today ~ I feel I have not just been to the farmy but many ones right across the country to read of what needs to be done how! Smart kitties, chooks with a clean home and Miss C hopefully on the sofa with an active mind and a resting body 😀 !!!

  16. You have a really nice Chicken house! My hens always take their time getting adjusted to new hay on the floor and lovely stuffing in the nests….then the eggs starts over once again and we all happy!

    Linda
    http://coloradofarmlife.wordpress.com
    ¸.•*¨*•♪♫♫♪Merry Christmas ♪♫•*¨*•.¸¸♥
    ˜”*°•.˜”*°•.˜”*°•.★★.•°*”˜.•°*”˜.•°*”˜”

  17. Maybe you should have taken a lesson from the cats and rode the clatterbox up! Be sure to leave the camera with Ton (and instructions to get photos for the blog). I’m glad John was available to help with the chook house. Good to see Kupa feeling better!

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