Category Archives: Chickens

Why I don’t mow my lawn anymore

I used to mow my lawn at least once a week.  It was really pretty.  Then I decided that functionality is better than pretty.  Now my lawn is full of wild birds flying around looking for bugs and bees buzzing from flower to flower.  I don’t have to worry about watering it because the ground is shaded and stays fairly moist.  It has wild chamomile, plantain, and dandelion.  I give my chickens 2 big buckets full of it a day.  This fall I’ll be cutting it down and making haystacks to use for my chickens this winter.

Hope you’re having a wonderful day!

This week’s orders & Steven King

These are a few of the Suncatcher Craft Eyes orders that shipped this week:

insta712

Follow me on Instagram to see more.

When I was out running errands yesterday, I stopped at a red light and looked over to see this:

13615520_1089239384470913_3614430445843930200_n

Yes, I was in Bangor, Maine (what Steven King calls Derry in his books).  This is a Steven King tour van that takes people around to all the famous places in his books.

Homestead-wise this week I’m playing with the vintage scythe I got to cut my lawn and field.  It’s so much fun to use.  I’m also taking extra special care of my chickens since temperatures are getting into the 90s this week.  There’s watermelon in the freezer that I’ll be giving them later as a nice cold treat.

Hope you’re having a wonderful week!

Making cream cheese & freezing eggs

My oldest son has moved out of the house to his own apartment, and I finally have the house to myself.  This comes after having my friend and her family living with me for 6 months.  I am so ready to be alone, and I’m enjoying every minute of it.

This week I experimented with making my own cream cheese.  I was reading a recipe that seemed almost identical to making yogurt.  Since I make yogurt in my programmable rice cooker, how hard could it be to make cream cheese?  Not hard at all it turns out:

All of the recipes I read said that the leftover liquid would be whey.  Maybe it’s because I’m using cream from my local dairy, but the liquid I got is more like creme fraiche, which is fine with me!

On the chicken front, my oldest chickens are almost 1-1/2 years old.  That means they should be moulting soon.  When chickens moult they either slow down or stop laying altogether.  Since this is the first time these chickens will be moulting, I have no idea if they will keep laying or stop completely, or how long they will moult.  It could be a month, it could be 3 months.  That’s why I’m freezing eggs now in case there aren’t enough once they moult.  I have an herb freezing tray that I’m using to freeze raw eggs for baking.  Today I started frying eggs to freeze.  I’m flash freezing them and then putting them in freezer bags with parchment paper in between.

Suncatcher Craft Eyes updates soon!

Chicks are 4-1/2 weeks old and outside!

The chicks are getting too big to be in my office all day, so I made them a mobile chicken pen from 4 T posts and some plastic fencing.  I move it to a new spot every couple days.  In another couple weeks, they’ll be moved to some kind of pen inside the chicken run with the big girls so they can all get used to each other, and then the final move will be to put them in the coop.  I love seeing them outside on grass.  They spend most of their time practicing flying and playing keepaway with bugs.  So cute!

Chicks are starting to look like penguins!

It’s been a while since I updated on here, but I’m still making a couple videos a week of my black and lavender Orpington chicks.  They’ve reached the ugly phase where their new feathers are starting to grow in.

I’m also soaking their feed in water overnight before giving it to them, which is a big hit.  Now they love me LOL  Here they are this morning:

Orpington chicks 8 days old

The chicks are over a week old already, and look how big they’re getting!  This video is part of a progression video series where I take about 5 minutes of video every day of the chicks to show their growth and development.  It’s a tough job but somebody’s got to do it 😀  Check out the Chicks playlist on my YouTube channel to see how they’ve been doing so far.  The videos start at 3 days old.

New Orpington Chicks

I just picked up a new batch of 10 Orpington chicks from a local breeder.  This is the same breeder that sold me my lavender Orpingtons last year.  I got 3 more lavenders and 7 blacks.  They’re so cute I couldn’t resist taking video of them.

I want to do a video a day.  It’s so interesting to watch them grow and see their progress.

Snow day!

We’re getting snow and freezing rain here in Maine today.  That means it’s a snow day!  It reminds me of being a little girl and watching TV in the morning to see if my school would be listed on the school closing announcements.

A snow day for me now is totally different than a snow day when I was going to working.  I worked in the medical field, and my job required me to go in to work even if there was a bad snowstorm.  I can’t count the number of times I drove in horrible road conditions, white knuckling it all the way to work and back home again.  Sometimes I’d have to drive 10 miles an hour or less just to make it home in one piece.

Even when I worked at home, I wasn’t safe from winter driving.  I worked 3rd shift as a medical transcriptionist typing STAT reports at home for a local hospital.  One night at about 1 in the morning, my power went out during a blizzard.  I’m talking white-out conditions and 2 feet of snow on the roads.  My supervisor told me I had to go to the office to finish my shift.  I tried, I really did.  I made it about 100 feet down the road, but the snow kept sucking my tires toward the ditch and I gave up.  It was really scary.  If you work for a hospital, this kind of makes sense … patient care comes first.  But I wasn’t involved in direct patient care.  I just typed up the reports.  Yes, they’re important, but not as important as my life.

I never understood all the other businesses that stayed open and put their employee’s lives at risk by forcing them to go to work during snowstorms.  Last year there was a 75-car pileup a few miles from my house due to snow and ice on the roads:

I95pile03.jpg

A 75-vehicle pileup shut down the northbound lanes of I-95 between Newport and Bangor most of Wednesday. The Maine State Police continues to investigate the cause of the pileup, which may be the largest in the state’s history. Pictured on top of the cars is Hermon Fire Captain Chandler Corriveau, who also works full-time for the Bangor Fire Department.

In my current situation, running my own business, I can take a snow day whenever I want, and it is such a relief.  I don’t drive in the snow anymore.  If the temperature is below 35 and it’s raining, I’ll stay home, thank you very much.  Snow day!

 

Cold-hearty chickens are awesome!

 

This is a blizznado?

What is a blizznado?  The local news channel was saying that was the kind of storm we were going to get last night.  Didn’t happen.  This is today’s vlog.  Hope you enjoy.

Visit Suncatcher Craft Eyes to see our entire collection of craft eyes in sizes 4.5mm all the way up to 40mm.

Visit me on YouTube to see my daily videos and behind the scenes (with a lot about chickens!).