Lots of pictures this week.  ‘Twas a busy week!

May 20 – Angel is my Dark Brahma.  David called her a designer chicken.  She is certainly the most intricately patterned of my chickens.  She is also the most tame and the one that consistently gets underfoot – to the point I have stepped on her toes a few times.

I made this sign to go on the garden gate.  It’s painted in glitter paint, so it really shines in the afternoon.  Chickens are no longer allowed in the garden.  I transplanted my strawberries and the chickens decided the freshly tilled earth made good dust bathing.  They tromped on, scratched up and flattened a third of the plants.  Fortunately, I had more to move, but that settled the chickens in the garden question.

May 21 – The very picture of a frustrated dog.  I was on the other side of the fence from her and not allowing her through.  First she went to gap in the fence that I had blocked with a stick because I discovered the chickens can fit through it.  Sadie cannot.  She grabbed the stick and chewed it, pulled it out of the ground.  Then she went to the gap in the gate and chewed on the zip ties and tried to fit through.  Sadie does not handle frustration well.

May 22 – Chick day, as noted in my previous post.  I finally figured out how to get much of the red out of a brooder picture (I use a red heat lamp in my brooders).  In Photoshop, under image>adjustments choose the Photo Filter option and use a green filter at about 50%.  There’s still a reddish tinge, but not the glowing red that the original picture has.  Originally I was going to brood the goslings with the chicks, at least until they got too big.  Then I read some more about geese and learned that they can live upwards of 30+ years!  I wanted them imprinting on me, not chickens, so I moved them to the house and became Mama Goose.  They are very sweet little creatures and I remain smitten.

How could I not?

David was home briefly today and showed me how to run the Roto-tiller.  We’re going to plant this whole back area, which was chicken yard.  It might be a little sandy – I’m not sure yet.  However, I was busy with babies and didn’t get around to doing any more.

May 23 – I don’t know if I posted a picture of the work David did on the mini coop.  It had been sitting on the ground and had developed some rot.  He cut all that out, put in new wood, tar paper,  and then sided three sides (not the front door part) with vinyl siding.  It looks completely different.  I think I may get some of the spray paint that adheres to plastics and paint it red, like it was.  Until then, it’s fine.  For now it’s the home of Baby Mama Chicken and her two charges.  The pen lets them be part of the flock without being subjected to any pecking or chasing.

May 24 – I went outside but didn’t offer any food to the chickens.  These ones followed me all the way back to the front door and waited a bit.  I sense disappointment.

May 25 – I drove up to Benzonia to deliver these fleece monsters to my friend Marcy.  She has a shop and a website.  Her shop always makes me feel at home because there’s so much creativity in it.  The monsters are so there will be something for the kids in her shop.  I had fun making them and she was delighted with them.

On my way home, I ran into this:

I don’t know any details, and haven’t been able to find anything on local websites.  This is one of those instances where I could have been more closely involved, but I had stopped minutes before to get something to drink at the mini mart 1/4 mile up the road.  It was on a bridge, so they weren’t moving traffic.   I called David to see if there was a way around this and he looked it up for me, directed me down some back roads and had me on my way.  As I was hanging up from he call, he said “Thanks for using On-Dave.”  Made me laugh.  An ambulance arrived a minute or so after this photo, and I passed the fire truck heading that way on the back road.

I really love it here.

May 26 – I found this contraption at the thrift store for $1.50.  It mixes and heats up cocoa, and more importantly, chai to a perfect temperature.  I have recently been treating myself to whole milk chai but kept ending up with that milk skin thing on top when I’d heat it on the stovetop or the microwave.  No more!  I also made some cocoa with a tablet of Mexican cocoa, and it melted that tablet and mixed it all perfectly.  Even better, it stayed mixed.  I used the leftovers in my smoothie two days later.  Even chai made from a dry mix is mixed well.

So, today was overcast and cooler.  I decided it was a good day for dog haircuts.  Here’s the before picture:

Fuzzy dogs!

Here’s Sadie after – it looks like I bobbed her tail.  I didn’t realize so much of it was fur!

And here’s Phoebe.  She’s a little rough, but it grows out…

Honestly, I’m just too cheap to take them in to have it done, and I’ve not invested in proper tools.  I was using sewing scissors.  They both seem happier, though, and that’s the important part.

The goslings seemed unhappy in the open so I upended a basket and put it in the cage with them.  They instantly began sleeping under it.  Usually one is in the back with the other two facing in.  They’ve already grown so much they have me wondering where I will keep them in a week or two.

I was trying to figure out the perfect names for them, something I can live with for many years, something that went together.  I was having trouble thinking of anything until today, when I decided upon Henry, Katherine and Anne.  I’ve been interested in Tudor England for quite some time.  With Katherine and Anne, I cover five of Henry’s six wives (Jane is the other), so it seemed like a good fit.  Besides, he looks like a Henry to me.   David, however,  just rolled his eyes at me…