Monday, March 13, 2006

Speaking of chickens

Here's a pair of bantams I got at the farmer's market in Alta Vista where we went to meet the girl who sold us the rabbits.

This guy there had a whole bunch of beautiful bantams and quail. I was trying to show restraint but as we were about to leave my wonderful, darling hubby says: "so that's it, we drove 80 miles just for a couple of rabbits?"

"Go look around and see what else you want 'cause we're not driving back 80 miles when you decided you should have got some of them little birds!"

Can you say Spoiled Rotten!

Thank you honey!

I love my little birds. Posted by Picasa

The two pallet chicken tractor

Ken very often comes home with these used pallets. He found these in a dumpster (skip). I started building what we call a chicken tractor. I think in England it's called an 'ark'. They're nice because you can keep moving them around and the chickens have fresh ground to scratch in all the time. I put a shelf /nest box up in the back of this one and a branch so the chicken can go up there to lay her eggs. It doesn't look like much here but I managed to get it finished this morning and I'll take pictures of it tomorrow.

It took me all week to build it because I was using up the stash of nails 'not bent enough to throw away'! They're all in a bucket along with oodles of other odds and ends left over from past projects so it means rumaging through the bucket to find just the right size nail then hammering it straight. The sawing ( the wood for the sliding doors at the back) was the hardest part though. We just about wore out the miter saw and the safety shield fell off it last week. I'm too scared to use it without the shield so I had to resort to the hand saw.

The two chickens that were in the house are in this now and seem to be very happy. I figured that with the high probability of the avian flu showing up over here soon the authorities will no doubt want all back yard flocks confined at the very least. This is a quick easy way to do it and yet they can still be moved around the yard. Posted by Picasa

Sunday, March 12, 2006

The good news is...

..we have NO chickens in the house! They are now both out in the pigeon loft thank goodness. However, we now have frogspawn and tadpoles in the bathroom! Posted by Picasa

Bunny Babies

Cassini had her babies on Wednesday just as we'd hoped. They're beautiful little things. She only had four but they are plump and healthy. She ignored the nest box I'd put in there for her and had them way in the back corner by the door. I was a bit afraid to go in there to inspect them but she didn't act at all concerned. Just ate her breakfast and watched me. In fact her personality has made a complete turn around. She's now very placid and lovey dovey! Let's hope it lasts. Posted by Picasa

Tuesday, March 07, 2006

The Stove Arrived!

And as you can see, getting it into the house wasn't that easy!

First of all we had a call from the truck driver who was supposed to deliver it. He was at the country store about six miles away. He'd stopped to ask for directions but the lady there managed to convince him that there was no way he would ever get that big truck down this road! We know that he could have done it but in a way it worked out for the best. Ken took off down to the store and he and the driver transfered the stove to the bed of our pick up.

It weighs over 600lbs and there was just the two of us so we had to come up with a way to get it off the truck and up into the house without killing ourselves!

Taking the railings off the deck and backing the truck up to it seemed like the best way. After that Ken attached a ratchet strap to the deck and the pallet that the stove was bolted to. Inch by inch he ratcheted it closer and closer to the end of the tailgate and then we were able to lift the front end up just enough to get it onto the porch. We did the same again to get the whole thing onto the porch. Then we really had to push and pull it to the door. It was painstakingly slow but once we got the end over the stoop we had a bunch of cut off broom handles to use as rollers. We rolled a little bit then brought the back roller to the front and rolled a bit more. Got it up the little step into the dining room and into place! I would never have thought we could do this without help. I had visions of it sitting in the driveway under plastic until we could find a few people to come and give us a hand.

So now it's sitting here all put together but not hooked up yet. Ken still has to get the right kind of stove pipe for it. We hope to have it fired up by the end of the month. Posted by Picasa