Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Mossy Rocks

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[5 eggs]

I love the mossy rocks!
This is the front view
that gets sun most
of the day.




This is a view
of the back that only gets
morning sun
and lots of shade.

I think it is amazing
how the moss can
live through the 
100+ temperatures
that we have in the summer.
I would really like to
have a solar water feature of some kind this summer.
I'll have to add it to my list of stuff that I need to accomplish.

I have been searching around for some way to put this blog on a cd. The main reason I'm making this blog is to have a remembrance of living here to add to our family genealogy. But I'm not having much luck finding anything. I guess I will have to have it printed.

Phooey... I have a very light migraine. 

Smiles

Monday, March 30, 2009

Welcome

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[5 eggs]

This is the Welcome plaque that I have by my front door. I love this color scheme. The shades of blue in the flowers, the golds and browns and the green. Perhaps this could be the beginning of a quilt someday?

Since Kristine has Monday free we went down the mountain to town and I bought a book, Tolkien's The Hobbit. When the girls were in elementary school I bought a lovely Hobbit for them that had beautiful illustrations. But after the earthquake who knows what happened to the poor book. I look forward to reading The Hobbit again. This is a very nice edition with illustration by Tolkien. Here is the official Hobbit site for information about the Hobbit movie Peter Jackson may be making? And here is another site with more info.

I made a quick stop at the quilt store and managed to get out without buying anything. I am going to make up some more blocks and take them with me next time to better match the fabrics and determine what I need to buy.

We even lucked out and found an organic restaurant where we had rice bowls with spinach, red cabbage, red bell pepper, carrots, sesame, and a cayenne and ginger dressing. Very, very good.

We stopped by our department store to say hello to a clerk we know that works there to wish her lots of good luck because the store is thinking about maybe closing or selling out. Nobody seems to know what is going to happen. I sure hope the store stays open especially for the people who need the jobs but also for all the people who rely on it for a place to shop.

I am so bad. I put my camera in my purse so I could take some photos and then forgot I had it with me. Sigh...

Smiles

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Fruit Trees

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[6 eggs today]


Apple Tree

The apple tree has small 
leaf buds getting ready
to open.




My brother and SIL planted the trees
 and I'm sure
knew how to care for them better than I have.

Cherry Tree
I missed the cherry blossoms
this year. I hope the fruit set but
with all the snow, probably not.

Fig Tree
(far right edge of photo)
The story about the little
fig tree is that it was doing fine
producing fruit until a bear 
climbed in it one day and the poor tree
has never been the same since.
I have the branches supported but I haven't seen any fruit.


Apricot Tree

All of these trees are struggling 
for their share of the sun.
I have tried pruning them
but worry that I have damaged
them because all I know about
pruning trees is just what I read
on the internet.



The cherry tree is behind the apricot tree and there is an avocado tree
on the left that has never set fruit. However, it is healthy and
makes a lot of shade besides being a lovely looking tree.

The other problem the trees have
is the poor soil. Since this is the top
of the mountain all the good soil washed away long ago.
 I put chicken compost under the trees and that
seems to help. 

I called Jean and she says she is feeling better
today and she sounds like she feels good.
Her leg needs to be stronger to
support her so she can get in and
out of bed.

Smiles

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Egg Delivery

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[6 eggs]

Today is the day that Tom
will make the egg delivery.

These are just some of the eggs.

The print out you see is from the hen cam here about how she doesn't wash her eggs and why.
I decided to follow her advice. As long as the nest boxes are clean so are the eggs. If the chickens have muddy feet the cold water works fine. I use a pencil and date each egg after I collect them. Next I will put rubber bands around the cartons.

I enjoy reading the hen cam blog and checking on the chickens. Silly maybe, since I have my own chickens to watch, but I like to check on the bunny. Candy is cute! Maybe we need a bunny too?

The eggs are different shades of brown and different sizes. I keep and use the large eggs that don't fit in the cartons. Anyway, that's my excuse so I can have lovely really large eggs for breakfast.

So, just because I started keeping track of how many eggs the girls are laying the count has gone down, because? They are laying eggs in the woods? They don't like the count? Too much pressure? 

Jean is not having one of her good days, but she did her physical therapy this morning and is going to have more this afternoon. She wants to go home and is working hard to be able to get out of bed and into her chair. I wish they could get her medication adjusted so she feels better.

Smiles

Friday, March 27, 2009

Watch!

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[6 eggs]

After I collected the eggs this morning,
I went looking for the chickens.

First, I found areas they had cleared
while looking for edibles
and making spots to dust bath.

Go watch your chickens, Morgan...



Then I heard Morgan
smashing through the leaves
as she was running
around her chickens.

The photos on this page will enlarge when clicked on!




The chickens don't pay very
much attention to Morgan
other than to get out of her way.



Morgan is laying down.
Smart dog!
She takes time out to rest.
If only those chickens would
stay together in one place,
Morgan would be much happier.

Smiles

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Woodshed

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(you can click on the photos to enlarge them)
[8 eggs]
I'm going to start an egg count everyday and keep track for awhile of the girl's egg production. The hens have started laying again after the winter slow down. Yesterday they laid 11 eggs.

This morning I went out to the woodshed (see photo on sidebar) to pick up some firewood to put in the wheelbarrow. I am so puny lately that instead of wheeling the wheelbarrow over to the wood I just carry a few pieces of wood at a time over to the house and fill the wheelbarrow. How pathetic is that...  Anyway, I noticed that we only have one course and a small amount of wood left stacked against the far wall. To make it through the winter we need to start with the woodshed at least half full. We will have enough wood, after all it is Spring, of course it just snowed, but we will have enough. It is dark in there so I had to use the flash which made the colors of the wood very light. It works out best if we can stack the green wood in the summer so it has time to dry, which makes for much better burning wood. 

The woodshed was originally built as a place to store building materials during the time that my brother built this house. The right half of the shed is still for storage. That is where we keep the chicken feed, paint, garden tools, dog crates, etc. The other half of the shed was turned into a place for a horse. You can see the left door opens in the middle, up (see photo on sidebar) and out so a horse can stick its head out and look around. At that time they kept the horse feed in the right side of the shed and there is a cut out in the adjoining wall so the alfalfa flakes can be shoved through saving a trip around the outside to the horse feeder. 

Then I went out and picked up the eggs. Egg! There was only one egg, but there was one dark Brahma hen laying, so I have hopes the hens will come back and lay after they have run around for a bit. Yesterday, they laid 11 eggs, which is quite good for the 16 hens that I think are laying. There are two hens that have taken up the idea that they are roosters, so I don't count them as layers. That's what happens when there is no rooster. A hen or hens will take the roosters place
in the flock. They don't crow, but they sure do make a loud crowy cackle kind of noise. Silly hens.

I think the dark Brahmas have such pretty markings. This hen was not bothered at all by my taking the photo even when the 1st photo was with the flash. (I forgot to turn it off) The Brahmas are such calm, gentle chickens. The Brahma roosters we had were such pets. Unfortunately, roosters don't last very long around here. They rush in to protect their hens and they are the ones who disappear first when there is a predator attack. We have decided not to have anymore roosters for awhile. The hens are much more settled without the rooster's attentions and we really don't want to have to worry about the crowing bothering the neighbors.

On the way back to the house I snapped this photo because everything looked so clean and bright from the snow and rain. Soon the oaks will leaf out and everything will be green and shady. I hope we get some bees this year. I don't remember seeing
any last year and the fruit trees didn't have any fruit that set. Of course that could have been from the late snows and frosts. 

I still haven't got up on the garage and gone after the leaves. My excuse is that they are too wet and I'm waiting for them to dry out so they will be easier to get off the roof.

I called Jean yesterday and she was having another of her bad days. I'll call again today before lunch and hopefully they will have her medication regulated better. Dear sweet Jean. I hate to think of her hurting. Tom is supposed to come home tonight.

[I called Jean just before lunch and she said she is doing better today. She was in her chair when I called and had done about half the work to get there. When she tried earlier in the week she couldn't do anything she was so weak. Her arms must be getting stronger. Tom and Dolores will be there to be with her while she has lunch and to visit. Sure hope the medication keeps on working and she continues to feel good. I told her she had well wishers from Japan and Texas and that cheered her up! Thanks.]

[Tom called and he won't be coming home until tomorrow]

Smiles

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Happy Birthday, Jaidan!

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Happy One Year Old!!!
Is he cute or what!
Hi, Jaiden
Huggles!
Looky there...
I see birthday teeth!

I tried to download a gif, but this was the best I could do because my mouse doesn't have a button (silly Mac mouse) so I can't get to the "save as" menu and the keys don't work either. Go Figure?
This little gif has the dino blowing out the candle repeatedly.

Have a wonderful birthday Jaidan!

Wow, the time goes by fast.
1 year old already!

And here he is new born.

Love and Hugs!

Thanks for the birthday photo. He is one happy camper!

Smiles

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

What's in the tree"

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When Kristine went to Australia in 2006, she was there from September through December and she took some great photos.
I am hurting for something to post so I went searching and found this pic of bats hanging in a tree. 

This tree was in the Royal Botanical Gardens across the bay from where she stayed. She loved her time in Sydney and would go back in a minute. She went to Australia as part of her class/study.

Click on the photo and you will get a good view of the bats. I'm still sleepy and didn't do much today. Hopefully, I will be out and about tomorrow. I think I am going to try writing Jean because it is too easy to call at the wrong time.

When I picked up eggs this morning I noticed that the chickens have been roosting instead of sleeping in their nest boxes. Hope they keep it up when it gets warmer.

Smiles

Monday, March 23, 2009

Snow This Morning

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What a strange day... I got up this morning picked up eggs, let the dog out, made Scottish oatmeal, took a photo of the bright shinning snow melty morning, went to eat my porridge, read my Daisy Dalrymple book and went to sleep. 

Hard to believe, but I just woke up and thought I had slept the clock around and that it was Tuesday morning instead of Monday after 6:00. I am still catching up on my sleep evidently or oatmeal is a great sleep enhancer.

I'll have to try making myself some oatmeal the next time I have trouble going to sleep. 

So, for the second exciting photo of the day I took another pic out the slider. The snow doesn't stick around very long once the sun comes out.

No snow forecast for the week so I'll be able to get outside. Yea!

And I would like to do some sewing this week too. I should be able to get something done. I feel sleepy and rested at the same time.

I gave Jean a call and naturally got her at dinner time. But she sounded like she felt better. I will give her a call later. 

Smiles

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Snow Day

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You can see from the photo that the snow is light
and has not covered the ground under the trees.
The snow is still falling
but sun is forecast for tomorrow
so I will enjoy the snow while it is here.

You can't really tell but the flag is wound up around
the pole because of the wind we had last night.
I was awakened by what sounded like ice or hail
pelting against my window.
But I didn't wake up all that much because
I went right back to sleep.
Now I wish I had got up to take a look.
[It is afternoon now and it is still snowing.
But it has stopped and I see blue patches of blue sky.]

Yesterday, I baked sweet potatoes
in my dutch oven on the wood stove.
I put a metal steamer in the bottom of the pot,
put the potatoes on that,
and put on the lid and in about
an hour they were done.
Pretty neat.

This morning I got to trek out through the scant snow
and collect 3 eggs and I made myself an omelet
with onion and red and green bell pepper.

Thing were working out pretty good
but I had the fire up a little too high and
there was a little burning starting
but

the real problem was
eek!
I picked up the plastic flipper for some reason.
I'm asleep?
You would think walking in the snow would wake me up?
Yes, I melted the flipper a bit.
Oops!

I will call Jean later today
and hope to catch her when she is not napping
or eating or having physical therapy
or something.
Maybe, I should just get her address
and send cards?

[Jean said her new room is much quieter
and she got a good nights sleep
and that may be partly why she feels better today.
She said she remembers Grandpa Joe
saying that if he got a good night sleep he could
put up with most anything the next day.
Her gout was bothering her yesterday
but the meds are helping.]

Smiles

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Where'd the sun go? Rain? Snow?

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Jean is not feeling well today.
I hope they find some pain meds that will work.
She was moved to a new room and has a different phone #.
Hugs and Kisses, Jean

Our sunny days are gone and we are due
for some rain and maybe even snow on Sunday.
I let the chickens out early so they could play
in the sunshine, but by 11:00 it was cloudy.
To tell the truth there was mist in the air
even when the sun was out earlier.
We need the rain, so it is a good thing.
I went to the door and called the chickens
to give them an apple core
and to take a cloudy day photo of them for the blog
but they are up to something
because they didn't come.
They must be behind the house?
They stay out and forage in the light rain
and only go in their coop if we get a heavy downpour.
The trees act like very large umbrellas.

I put out a fresh table cloth and this candle holder.
The holder used to belong to my step-mother Mary
and I got it by way of my mother-in-law Dolores.
I always loved its colors and especially
enjoyed watching green bayberry candles
burn in it at Christmas time.
I really don't care for the candle/holder
in there now but it is what I have.
I think I will go search around in my candle drawer
and see if I can't find something better.

Smiles

Friday, March 20, 2009

New Window

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Looky there!
Tools
I was so glad that Tom found the screwdrivers.
So, I went outside to the chickens coop
to take off the broken window
and
found two eggs out in the chicken pen.
Very strange.
The girls have never done that before.

I put on the new window
and moved the ladder closer
so there won't be much room for them to hit the glass.
When Kristine gets home I will ask her
to take a look and maybe
we will just take the ladder out.
As soon as it warms up I will be leaving
the windows open.

I don't remember if I said before that my brother
built the chicken pen area originally as
two pens for his dogs and eventually
converted one of them to a chicken coop/pen.
Kristine and I have been thinking of enlarging
the pen by incorporating the other fenced area.
We will need to put on an anchor roof on the
other side to keep the critters out.
Another project for the summer.

These girls were giving me a bad time
as I fixed the window
and even as I bade them goodbye.

I thought I would put a photo of this wild plant
on my blog to keep as a record.
The plants grow near the fence line
behind the chicken coop.
There are not many of these plants and
only in a few shady areas.
I wish I knew the name of the plant.

I'm still taking it a bit easy
and haven't started sewing yet
because my eyes still get tired but
I'm better!

Jean sounded pretty good today.
Making jokes and laughing.
She had physical therapy.
Hugs Jean!

Smiles

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Aunt Jean Update

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Aunt Jean is still in the hospital and she has a lot of pain
but they are not going to cast her ankle.
She is going to get physical therapy and hopefully
learn to get in and out of bed within a few weeks.
Or she will need to go to a facility
and get physical therapy there until the ankle heals.
The physical therapy will continue
when she gets home.
Hope she gets to come home soon!

Yikes!
When Kristine went out to lock up the chickens last night
she noticed the broken pane.
The chickens are all fine. She even counted them.
I picked up the two broken bits of glass this morning
and went to the shed to get another window. 
Took it out to the coop to check the size
and it will fit even though it is a lower window.
It is thicker but the same size.
Then I went to get a phillips head, flat head and a punch
so I could take off the old hardware
and put on the new
and...
there are no phillips heads anywhere
???
Beats me?
I looked in all the places they should be,
soooo.....
I guess I will have to keep looking
and I have a feeling that Tom has them.
Phooey!
I will have to give him a call.

Smiles

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Aunt Jean

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Last night Aunt Jean spent the night in the hospital
because she fell and broke her ankle.
Hopefully, they will cast it
and she will come home today.
Dear sweet Jean
I hope you are doing better today!
Hugs and Kisses


Tom has gone to stay at Bill's and
he will stay to see if he can be of help.
I couldn't sleep last night thinking of Jean.
I'll try and get a nap in and I'm not
going to go rake leaves off the garage roof today.
Sleep would be good.
But I don't think that is going to happen
because Morgan is barking.
Oh well.
I'll need to go outside for a bit
and check out what she is upset about.
I told Morgan to be quiet and I went to sleep
for about an hour.
I can't believe I'm still awake.

Smiles 

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Feeling Better!

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I didn't want to over do my first day of feeling Ok
so I started out collecting eggs.

Then I went out to get my gloves
and found that I had left them under a leak in the shed
so I put them in the sun to dry.
I took a photo because
they are the neatest gloves.
Knit on top so my hands don't get sweaty
and laytex or something on the palms and fingers.


Picked up mostly dry leaves
and put them in the pen
because the pen was getting too muddy.

Then I went over and raked up some
leaves and twigs and stuff
off of the driveway.

Checked back with the chickens
and filled the feeders and cleaned the nest boxes.
Morgan wants her chickens out of the coop
because she wants them all together.

But there are some late layers.
This little girl is telling me to go away.

And these three girls all want to lay their egg
in the same nest area.
Go figure?

There are lots of places for them to lay
but there seem to be favorite spots
that they compete over.
Silly chickens.

Smiles

Monday, March 16, 2009

Migraine Food

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I woke up late today because
Kristine and Tom went to a movie and
the house was quiet and I just slept.
After I woke up I had two migraine episodes
but without the terrible pain
just the fortress lights, a bit of ache, and disorientation.

So, hmmm, does this mean that I ate too much
salt or sugar yesterday, or slept too long
and didn't eat and drink when I should have?
I remember I was bumping into stuff yesterday.
I thought that was a bad sign.
I am going to have to cut the salt way back.
And get some really good honey.
I'm not going to use that store brand
syrupy stuff 'cause I think that
because of the way it pours it is not all honey.

First I made the dog some rice.
Morgan gets rice added
to her dog food along with cottage cheese.
That's the rice under the chicken
with Kristine's school stuff in the background.

I decided to make myself something to eat while
I couldn't see very well, so the photos
are a bit off and out of order too.

The rice is the bell pepper, carrot, onion, mix
that I added chicken to.

This is my lemon water.
I miss my tea.

I reduced the chicken juices after
I added lemon, orange, curry, and raisins.

I read that curry is supposed to help with migraines.
I thought why not try it?
Since things are working out so well... not!

This is the chicken starting out with
the lemon and orange.
No salt. sigh....

And since I hauled this out to get at the lemon and orange slices.
I thought I would show you my answer to
plastic wrap.

When I was little around 1947
I remember my great Aunt Bertha
always put her leftovers in the refrigerator
stored like this.
Neat!


Sometimes I use big bowls and use a plate or pot lid
for a cover.
Whatever works.

Well, it would be nice if the curry helps?
See what happens tomorrow.
This migraine stuff is getting to be a pain.
Ha! :)
Tom and Kristine just got home and
brought me more lemons and stuff!
Good thing I love veg, fruit and simple food
otherwise I would be a very unhappy camper.

Smiles