Tuesday, September 22, 2009

First Frost...

The frost has officially hit! The girls were rowdy this morning making a racket I think they're not ready for the cold either. Last night, with the temperature dropping we rushed out to the community garden where we have extended our growing space. We headed out around 8:45 pm for some last minute veggie picking. Bumping around with our headlamps in the dark hoping not to run into a bear before we got into the bear fence! It was freezing! We picked some cucumbers that we were holding out for and a huge zucchini, not as big as the last though 17"!!! The garden really produced for us this year and the sun exposure at the community garden really is 360 degrees. Makes our little plot in the yard seem like a waist of time. I also volunteered this summer at a local sustainable farm in nearby Carbondale. What a great bunch of folks! I ended up working so much that we worked for a full CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) share in trade. We also purchased a fruit share from a organic farm, Ella Family Farms. We have been enjoying peaches, apples and pears! I bought an extra case of apples and canned some apple sauce yesterday and made choc chip zucchini bread! Storing away... so far we have a pantry full of pickles, tomato puree, jams and sauce. Haven't braved the pressure canner yet but we're getting there. The girls have enjoying the scraps from all the sauce making. Our plan was to try to "put up" enough food stuff to make it through the winter with out having to buy canned goods. I also purchased a pressure cooker which has made bean reconstituting super easy. Amazing what little changes can make a huge different in your self sufficiency.

I know that this post hasn't been much about the chickens but I was hoping to inspire some out there that perhaps think that living on a "farm" is too far away. It really can be done in a super small space. I would love to hear about some small victories out there.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

good summer so far...

Well it's close to the end August and it's been a good summer. Huge harvest this year! And to boot we've added bees to our menagerie. The girls are doing well with the exception of the entire summer Victoria and Sylvia both decided it would be a good idea to stop laying. So weird. My friend Rose said that at times during heat spells, the girls will take a break. I think they're just stubborn! I know that this is a chicken blog but would anyone be interested in hearing our bee story?

We've added to more nesting boxes into the little ones coop and they're loving it. Sometimes they would get three chickens deep in the one box making such a ruckus! So my husband added two additional boxes and the first day they were in there!

They've been getting spoiled on all our garden scraps between the yard garden, the community garden and volunteering at the farm. We've been getting spoiled too!

My favorite recipe this summer has been a quick dish I whipped up at my mom's for my teenage vegetarian step daughter:

3 each Olathe corn cobbs (cut off the cobb), sauteed in a little bit of olive oil, cooled slightly and then tossed with the other ingredients

1 large zucchini, shaved thin on a Japanese mandolin
1 each Kholrabi, peeled and julienned
Tossed in a dressing I made with dijon mustard, Colorado honey, balsamic, chopped fresh parsley, basil and oregano and blended oil (EVO & canola)

It was so amazing and delicious. The corn has to be really sweet other wise it will be starchy tasting

Thursday, May 7, 2009

I think we need a second nesting box!

The girls have been piling on in here sometimes three at a time

The weather been amazing here and the girls are loving it. Catching some long awaited sun shine. The girls have been grazing in the yard and living it up getting fresh lettuce srcaps from the greenhouse!

Friday, March 20, 2009

Spring Thaw!

Everyone has made it through the winter ok and I gave the girls eglu a good cleaning today and I've ordered my plastic replacement bars! So excited, those wooden bars are so hard to clean!

We are in full thaw now and the girls are not stoked about the mud! I'm busy in the garden prepping the beds for planting and I got a few things in the ground already. The greenhouse has already produced a full crop of arugula and baby lettuces. The swiss chard that over wintered in there has been producing all winter long. Crazy!

The girls laid most of the winter with a bit of slowing down though. The little ones are laying again but few and far between. They need a nesting box witch my husband has promised to build but still no box yet! Honey do list! The girls have been laying but the eggs fall through the bars because they won't go in their little house. So weird!

Look at my pretty Luna!!! Look at that plumage! Such a foxy Blue Cochin! She's my prolasp girl and seems to be doing really well. She is the only one that makes that pek--kaaa chicken sound. My Favs and Wee-man, our bantam make chicken purring (???) sounds. Wish someone would cover chicken sounds in a book some where.

The tulips and crocuses are popping up through the ground and it feels so good to see the signs of the much awaited spring!