What happened?

I am sitting here in the early morning, listening to the dawn (though it is not quite dawn) chorus of the chickens in their hen house. They do this every morning. Noisy calesthenics. They screech and bob and call out for up to a minute – the lot of them – not just roosters – the whole house hooting at the tops of their voices, an awful cacophony of shrieking then all at once as though by the baton of the conducter, they stop. Done. Over.  And the usual small birds in the trees take back their thread of gentle morning song. 

And as I sit writing to you, my early morning conversation, ignoring all the rules of good writing the nuns taught me, I am trying to remember what did happen yesterday. 

Lucky for me I always load the best of yesterdays images into the programme the night before. Then my bleary brain gets little clues of what i was going to talk about. Oh I know what it was! At last mine mind begins to catch up with my fingers – air. AIR. I was going to talk about air.

My pasture raised chickens, destined for the freezer then ultimately the table, need lots of air.  Lack of good fresh air is one of the major contributors to ill health. When it is hot and close and sunny they need careful watching. So the tarpaulin needs to be positioned in such a way that they are protected from the sun but still catch whatever breeze is on offer. (I know there is no picture of the meat chickens this morning but I am always taking pictures that seem to have nothing to do with what I am talking about).

This teaches us that WE need lots of air too. Being locked behind air conditioning day in and night out is not actually healthy. Especially for overweight chickens and overweight peoples.

Or overweight pigs. We all know Wai, his sleepy eyes and his heavy metal blankets. His daily cream has a zinc component and his covers are heavy with it now, after weeks of covering his wounded back. An oil skin cloak for a tiny horse.  I brought him a bag of pot belly food and he has scorned it. 

Though it will not be wasted as Tima scorns nothing.

So what happened yesterday? Not very much. I clarified that the trade off between lots of air and too much sunshine is an important one. Too much hot sun can kill a fast growing chicken but not enough air can kill it too so we run a fine balance as they reach their final weights. The workers understand this now.

We received the third shipment of chicks for the year. The White Rocks. They are lovely fat little chicks. All settled in the turkey house with a white hot light. The evenings ahead are quite cool for this time of year.

Jake’s gardeners dropped off a truckful of old kohl rabi for the cows (they cleared the bed) and the cows gathered around the pile and ate the lot.

The tomatoes are coming in thick and heavy. We will hopefully sell a lot of sauce tomatoes and cherry tomatoes this week. The split ones are being devoured by the meat chickens (kind of funny watching those fat things grabbing a piece of tomato and waddling off at speed) and the layers and Lady Astor at milking time. I always plant extra so the animals get their share of goodness. 

Though some birds just steal their share.

I hope you have a lovely day.

Love celi

Newsletter: While I still have the workers I am carving out two hours a day to work on the Amazon and Zazzle shops- getting ready for the newsletter launch in eleven days. It will be a small newsletter with links to these shops to raise a little revenue for the hangers on like Wai and Sheila and the old milking cow Lady Astor who will live out her days here but still needs feeding and I bet there will be other rescues. I could not have saved Wai without your help.  I am getting the first products ready for you. Now that I am getting the hang of it I am quite enjoying turning farm pictures into postcards and greeting cards, and prints for you to buy, and coffee cups and aprons and T shirts.

I can make the calendar on my gift site too so make sure to sign up for the newsletter to keep up to date on this news. Scroll down past the Lounge of Comments to the Newsletter Button. It  will only come out once a month so will be easy to miss.

Weather: Rain they say. Now we will have to work out the trade off between air and rain. And look at those overnight temperatures.  Chilly for little chicks. Good for fat chickens. Great for muddy pigs. Excellent for this little pig with exposed pink granulated skin.  A lot of it now.

Thursday 08/03 90% / 0.3 in
Scattered thunderstorms this morning, then mainly cloudy during the afternoon with thunderstorms likely. A few storms may be severe. High 82F. Winds S at 10 to 15 mph. Chance of rain 90%.

Thursday Night 08/03 60% / 0.37 in
Scattered thunderstorms during the evening. Partly cloudy skies after midnight. Low 56F. Winds WSW at 10 to 15 mph. Chance of rain 60%.




36 Comments on “What happened?

  1. Would you LOOK at the eyelashes on that pig! Great photo of him off for his constitutional, accompanied by a slightly anxious-looking Ton. Is he well enough to be getting up to mischief yet? Put me down for an apron when they’re done, mine is on its last legs and may not survive too many more washes.

      • It depends on how much it weighs. If it can go international first class, instead of priority, it should be easier on the pocket book! I am up your way next Monday thru Friday if you need help pricing.

  2. Love the pic of Wai walking. Is he losing weight? Or is it my imagination? Glad for the cooler weather for you. And I enjoyed your comments on air! I keep my windows open as much as possible year round. I live in the part of that isn’t too hot LA so it is easier to do so.

  3. Your garden looks good, and so does Wai. Have a fab day. 😀

  4. A beautiful bird like Mr Flowers would be allowed to steal all he wants in my garden. Luckily our climate allows us to have our windows open most of the time, our winter evenings are cooler but the days are beautiful. A big pat and a scratch on a favoured spot for Ton 🙂 Laura

  5. You’ll have to keep us informed about how the White Rocks develop as meat chickens. We’ve had horrible luck with our latest batch of Red Ranger meat chickens. Had them in the brooder for several weeks preparing them for time in the halfway house, outside, to let them grow. We secured (or so we thought) the halfway house well, and put them in. The next morning all 28 were dead, some half eaten, some just killed. A raccoon had gotten in through the top, through the chicken fencing. Really awful. The raccoons have been particularly devastating this year. We will wait until it is cooler to get another batch of meet chickens. Farming can certainly be very difficult….., even grim, as with the death of farm animals, at times! 😦

    • So sorry about your chickens…it is so hard to keep those raccoons out. I had one bend the metal facing off my garage door trying to get inside, and that’s something I could not have done myself but yet he had the strength to do it.

        • Oh NO – to awful – do you have a chicken electric fence? I would surround the whole set up in the electric fence and train them to stay away. If an electric fence can keep bears off beehives surely it will work with racoons? Just dreadful – we are so lucky with the lack of predators here – big open spaces i suppose – no forests

          • Sorry Miss C, but sadly – if they’re hungry enough – electric fences do NOT keep bears away from beehives and they very quickly learn that the momentary pain of being zapped is worth getting at all of that yummy protein (bees, brood and pollen) with honey as the cherry on top. Trust me when I say, there is NOTHING more distressing than finding your bee-yard blown apart after a bear has gone through it! ): and it is perfectly legal to defend your livestock from marauders. Having said that, assuming that an electric fence would deliver a bigger punch to a raccoon than it would a bear.

              • They learn (short-term pain for long-term gain; ) and more “experienced” most likely… Before we put the fencing up, there was a younger one (smaller scat) who gave up trying to get the hives apart fairly soon; but this fellow was a few years later, and very organised in his approach to the whole thing ):):

  6. I love that morning cacophony- people think only roosters crow ( and only at dawn). I imagine the hens are all catching up on the latest gossip:)

  7. Good morning, Celia!
    You make my simple morning routine look so lazy!
    Thank you for the motivation to get going!
    Love to you and your wards.

  8. Really loving your blog and seeing you care for Wai in particular. Also your comment on the chickens made me laugh because we have some ducks and every morning they sound like a bunch of whiny old ladies from Jersey complaining at the top of their lungs as they wait for me to come and let them out and free range in our backyard…

  9. A client of mine came in today (I’m primarily a massage therapist), knowing that I’ve been working to create a blog of my own (focusing on self care), and was RAVING about your blog. …I’m so glad she did.

    Your site is beautiful, your posts complex. I love it.

    I love today’s post, and how it focused on air.

    *applause, applause

    Nowadays I feel we’ve become a little more ‘indoorsy’ and don’t get enough circulating natural air. And not only THAT, but I feel like people aren’t really *breathing*. Know what I mean? Like, deep, intentional, nurturing, restorative breath. Just little shallow breaths. There’s a little bit of a movement with meditation and yoga, though, so that’s promising.

    I’m excited to keep reading your words and getting lost in your photos. LOVELY!

    Big love,

    • Oh Crystal – I so agree. Even our food is grown without decent air around them nowadays. The breathinng I totally understand. I see many city people discover their breath when they come down here – they stand and look around them then up at the sky and there is so much air around them they cannot help but breathe it in consciously. And that big conscious breath always has a big smile in the descent. Lovely to meet you! c

  10. That 2nd pic of Wai…he looks like he’s saying his prayers, such a great pic that is! I just want to give him a big hug. And so true that air and sunshine is healing in the right amounts.
    I wish I could raise meat birds but I haven’t the heart to kill them. I bought an ax after I felt my older chicken suffered a couple days before she died, and I felt with an ax I could’ve ended that suffering, but I doubt I could do that even to a suffering chicken.
    Although I have in the past offed a few raccoons, but the guilt after was hard.

    • I don’t kill the chickens myself – I have no intention of practising on them – I prefer to have the professionals do it – fast and practised. Though I have put down suffering aniimals – when it is the right thing to do – no-one else around here will do it – totally up to me so I have to toughen up and get it done. c

  11. Good on Wei (such a smart little fellow to turn down “prepared” food when he’s got all of the lovely, fresh (slimming!: ) variety right outside his door; ). He’s looking absolutely wonderful these days Miss C!:D And good for you taking the extra time (while you have the chance) for setting up Shoppe; and best of luck with your new endeavour!

    • I hope people come over to find little gifts – it would be such a reief to be able to earn a little money myself.. the sale of the animals only pays for most of the feed .

  12. We have a lot of air this morning…it’s quite windy but of course it IS August¡ I’m looking forward to perusing the Farmy newsletter and browsing the shop in my preferred manner -from the comfort of my own space ♡

  13. When I was a kid, my mother would have all the windows in the house open through all seasons. The only exception was if it was blowing a gale. The windows on the other side of the house still got opened though! As a kid, I hated it, shivering away, but we were always healthy! And now I’m an adult, I find myself doing the same thing. I hate air-conditioning. I turn it off at work whenever I can get away with it. I feel like I can’t breathe properly with air-conditioning, and I’m sure it circulates all sorts of germs. And my windows are always open!

  14. The new chiclets are adorable. Nice to see Wai is doing better. I can’t wait for this oppressive humidity to end and open our windows!

  15. Hi, Ceci! I’m a little ahead of the game (by 11 days or so) but perhaps since the Newsletter will be way at the end of the comments, there would be a way to let us know at the top that it’s on the docket for that day. I usually read all of the comments, but don’t go beyond so frequently. This would give us a ‘heads up so we don’t miss it!

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