You are currently browsing the monthly archive for December 2011.

Dec 30 –   I let the new chooklets into the pen.  They have just the small run beside the barn at the moment.  Later, I’ll move the small pen up against the fence so they can have some more room.  The temps today are above freezing, and there’s a bit of snow on the ground.  They found where there was still some grass available and lined up to eat that.

Buff Brahmas above, Dark Brahma below:

Romeo finally left the barn for a bit today.  He’s been very subdued and resting.  He has a bit of a limp, which I hope will pass.  It may be the cause of his subdued nature.  He does seem a bit more himself, so that’s a good thing.

My Blue Orpington pullet is now called Precious, after the main character in The No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency series (which I so very very much recommend).  I also call her Mma.  The splash boy is Mr. JLB, also from the books.

Both Mr. JLB and Jack lost some tail feathers, as did Precious and Romeo.  The wounded Ranger hen has scabbed over and is healing, as long as the other chickens leave her alone.  I’m beginning to believe that Tater may have been in the barn once before, based on the injuries to Flappy, a Ranger hen who had a rather serious tear in her skin.  It appears from my reading and experience, that dogs tend to bite chickens in the rear.  They don’t, unless they are feral and hungry, appear to eat any of the chickens.  Flappy healed up and has a strange flap of scar, hence her name.

Rooster pictures:  The tail feather loss isn’t as noticeable.

Mr. JLB is turning into quite the handsome young roo.  He may end up with a trip to the fair next summer as well.

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Dec 29 – No pictures yet of the new chickens – the lighting in the barn is horrible.  The chicks, though, are in the house…

I have 7 Buff Brahmas, a dark Brahma, an Australorp, and a mix she called a special Black Star, which is a cross between a Dominique and a Maran, so her eggs will hopefully be darker brown.  She also had some peeps, and I couldn’t resist the little blue chicks she called “Olive Eggers”.  They are a cross between a blue splash Maran and an Ameraucana.  The hope is that their eggs will be olive colored. The picture above is of one of those peeps.

I also took a 2-week old Dominique (a black and white barred breed).  She’s a fierce looking little thing.  On the way home, she sat with her wings covering the peeps (just a couple days old) to keep them warm.   I’m liking her already, and her name is JuJuBee.  I don’t think I’ve ever named such a young chicken.  Personalities usually don’t show up so early to me, but there’s something about her.

Is there any doubt that birds are dinosaurs?   Look at that face!

The barn is set up with two chicken rooms, so now the new chickens (they’re all about 7 weeks old, so a bit away from laying yet, but big enough to be outside) are in one room alone.  I’m not letting them outside today, as it’s quite a bit colder here than it was 2 ½ hours south.  They have settled in and are scratching around and being happy little chickens, though, so I’m pleased.   My heart is a little lighter.

Dec 28 – Working on David’s quilt and the wild sewing cat is back again.  I think he wants me to make him something quilted.  He is a cat of discerning tastes – he likes wool and quilts.  Handknits are also good, as long as they’re poofy.

Then I made a phone call about some chickens and spent the rest of the day on a road trip to pick up said chickens.  No pictures yet.  I had a very cool picture of the lady’s Silkie/Orpington cross hens (I am so making some of them!) but somewhere between the computer and the camera, they were lost to the ether.  And I can find mention of them online, but no pictures.  They were big beach ball chickens, like good Orps are, but they had little poofs on top of their heads.  They also had lightly feathered five-toed feet.  I’m thinking Romeo and Jack’s kids are getting put in a pen together later in the spring.

Dec 27 – Something no chicken owner ever wants to see – far too many feathers for a chicken to be missing.  This was the scene I was subjected to over and again yesterday.  Fortunately, we had a light snow that covered much of it today.

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Dec 26 – The picture is from when I was in town.  The lakes are frozen now and fishermen are making their way out there to test the ice.  I was returning library materials and paused on my way out of the parking lot to take this picture.

My egg delivery was a no-go.  I don’t know if we miscommunicated or if she just forgot.  I stopped to get chicken food.  My phone had been forgotten at home, so I wasn’t able to stop and call my mom, as I had planned, so I just headed home, earlier than I expected.

Being a recounting of the Boxing Day Massacre – I’m writing it for myself because folks, I’m heartbroken here and writing helps me process.  If you don’t want to be sad, just pass it on by and enjoy the fishing scene above…It’s password protected so no one is unnecessarily subjected to the sadness.  The password is sad.

Dec 25 – In which we have a white Christmas!  The ladies are on their way to see what the chickadees have dropped.  The area under the bird feeders is always well scratched.    Pepper and Sault are always hanging out together.

Dec 24 – Hobie is Sew Wild!  This book was on my wishlist and a happy little elf sent it along with the Cook’s Illustrated Cookbook (2000 recipes!!!).  I love the cookbook, but sadly this one has not lived up to the hype.  I had read good things about it, but it doesn’t quite fit my aesthetic.  I’m a messy creative, but this is…too messy?  I don’t know.  It just isn’t working for me, so I’ll be sending it back to Amazon (bless their return policy) and getting something else.  Thank you happy elf Gen.  The cookbook makes me deliriously happy (and I’ve already used it twice).  The new book will also make me happy.

This appears to be the year of Kitchen-Mas.  I have the lovely cookbook.  David got me a 9-cup Cuisinart food processor (my first!), and as soon as it comes off backorder and ships (est. date January 4), I will have a pear-green Kitchen-aid stand mixer.  Color me happy Christmased.

Dec 23 – Our lovely tiny tree now has lots of presents beneath it.  It looks very festive.  The lights are on all the time now, heading into Christmas.  David gets home later today and will be home for a few days.

Dec 22 – Dog in chair.  That is all.