What a crazy week we had last week here on the farm, and it’s going to get even busier before it calms down!
Home & Farm Projects
We had three long-awaited construction projects finally completed: you saw Sam’s new window last week, and we had a new sliding door to the patio put in (the old French doors didn’t work very well, and the glass was all fogged on one side). Now we can let Luke out either door which makes life easier, and I have a clear view to our new memorial garden (not seen here)!
The third project was getting a new chicken run built, so the birds have more space, a higher “ceiling” net, and a door so that we can go in and out of there easily. We had been letting the chickens out to free range some because we hadn’t seen the fox in two weeks. Unfortunately, on one of the days they were out, it appeared again, but no one was hurt. We had just been outside, and it was warm enough so that we had the whole house open. The Dadz heard a couple chickens squawking and immediately saw the fox and scared it off. So, the poor girls are back in their run for a while. At least now it will be easier for us to get in there and give them some plants and hopefully a perch they can sit on. We’ll try free ranging again in a while.
The guinea hens have started laying eggs! We were hoping to get them to hatch some, but we’re not sure how that will go. At first, they were just laying them in random places, but then we saw them hanging out in my flower garden and thought they were starting a nest there. They only laid one egg there though, and now have started on another spot (Dadz said there were 6 eggs in the new nest on Sunday. Supposedly they won’t sit on the eggs until there’s 30 or so.) We were hoping they’d stick with the garden (both females are laying and we read they’d use the same nest) since it would be safer because it’s closer to the house; but the new nest is behind the garage. I only found that nest because Harry was over by it squawking while Violet was nesting. They are such a cute couple!
Initially when we were finding the eggs in random places, we had tried moving the eggs into one of the nesting boxes inside the coop, hoping they’d get the hint or that one of the chickens would decide to sit on them. However, the eggs just ended up broken, and they kept laying more eggs in random places on the floor!
It’s difficult to find information on what to do, but one person I found on Instagram told me that if they know you (or a predator) found their nest, they’ll move it. We’ve decided to just let them be and see what happens. We can eat the random eggs we’ve found. They are smaller than chicken eggs but are higher in protein so even better for you.
The new chicks are growing quickly, their legs are getting longer, and our cat Samantha is still spending most of her time upstairs with them. I’ve been busy hauling plants in and out of that room to give them so outdoors time. When you start plants indoors, you then have to “harden them off” so that the outdoors weather isn’t a shock to them. We’re getting close to time that they can finally be planted outside, and I hope to sell a few herbs and tomato plants too. Plus, you also saw last week that I’ve gotten started on the new memorial garden and I’ll share more about that when I’ve made a little more progress.
I’ve also been spending some time painting inside the house and wanted to show you this fun sign I found when I took a little break from everything and went shopping with the girls last weekend. I’ve been working on the kitchen/living/dining room area a little at a time (I can only do so much because my hands bother me if I try to do too much at a time), and I hope I can at least get the last area finished before I lose that extra time I’ve had at home!
On the Work Front
In other good news, I found another part-time job! I will be working at a local farmstand for the summer and fall, and I’ll also be able to sell our farm products (eggs, organic dog cookies, and eventually fresh produce) there! I will be meeting with the owner this week to work out the details, but she told me I could pretty much make my own hours and do as little or as much as I’d like. I think I’ll be able to work it out so that I can still take Luke on his daily walk before I go there, or after, and to start at least I’ll only work a couple days so he doesn’t have to be alone for too long. The Dadz has flexibility in his schedule as well, so the birds won’t have to be stuck in the coop all day either (even the run is not 100% secure, so they will not be left in there for more than short times when we’re not home).
I need to get busy now before it opens working on my homemade all-natural hand & body butter, and sugar scrubs to sell along with my all-natural lip balms. I have my own personal “focus group” in my sisters and girlfriends – they give me feedback on my products, and I recently just made the first batch of hand & body butter and they loved it!
Pets Come First
Luke and I have settled into a pretty good routine lately, and I’m relieved that I can bring in some more money without having to take away the walks he’s come to love. I think since we’ve been walking almost daily that he is more relaxed and calm. He was SO good when we had the contractors here doing those projects. Yes, he barked at them some, but for the most part he stayed quietly in the bedroom when needed (I wanted to keep him further away from the loud noise so we didn’t use the crate this time), and he didn’t seem stressed out about the noise. He got a little lonely on the longer stretches of being in there, but the Dadz or I would go in and hang out with him for a bit if he started whining. I’m very proud of how well he did and how quiet he stayed.
Putting it All Together
So there’s a little insight into why I had to cut back on the blog a little! I’m still behind on some of that, but I just keep plugging away at it as I can. While it seems crazy busy, I am doing things I mostly enjoy, and I think the farmstand job is the last piece of the puzzle to make it all work. Even though it will only be for a few months, my hubby and I are hoping it will get the farm name and products out there and known and benefit that in the long run. My real dream is to have our own farmstand here at our home, but we are kind of out of the way, and that will be tougher. The stand I’ll be working at is on a main road with a lot of traffic going by, so I think that’s going to be a better place to start for now, along with giving me some income as well.
I feel like we’re on the right road, and as much as I’d like to be home with the crew 24/7, I think this is as good a compromise as we’re going to get for right now. The Dadz’ job will be changing in the fall too (he’ll be moving to a new store in the chain he works at), so we’ll still be in a little flux for a while, but I think things are starting to come together. The important thing is that we keep everyone here safe and happy and hopefully this all works out that way!
Auntie Sheryl says
Harry and Violet? Not Harry & Megan?! lol. I think once your products take off you’ll be able to sell them year round at local stores… 🙂 They’re really high quality. Chris loves the sample you gave me (the hand cream). He also loves the lip balm (and has once again stolen mine).
I actually kept thinking I should have named her Sally. Behind the times, I guess, LOL!
Thank you so much, and I’m glad to hear Chris loves them too! Let me know when you need more. 😉
Jodi Stone says
I’m glad that you’re finding your groove, and that you found something that works for your schedule. Getting your name out there is important, and hopefully the feedback/clientele you discover will lead you where you need to be.
Thank you! I hope this is a step in the right direction, even though there will still be things to figure out along the way.
Wow! You have been busy! Can Luke go with you to the farm stand? He’ll be less anxious with you and he might just charm your customers into buying more!
Oh, I so wish he could, that would be so awesome! But unfortunately, Luke is very afraid of strangers. 🙁
And I thought we had some kind of zoo or circus here! The egg caper and the fox are more than enough!
Too much, trust me, at times! A zoo is right! 🙂
You definitely have been busy! Painting is such a time consuming task. There’s only one room I have left to paint, but it’s not used much, so it’s just going to remain the colors it was when I moved in for a while. I love the sage green color you chose!
Thank you! You did well to get most of your house done. I think it’s going to take me years to get everything in this house painted! 🙂
sand spring chesapeakes says
You guys are super busy! Everything looks wonderful! When my guinea hens were free roamers I did have one hatch out some chicks but then we had a rain spell and lost them. Mine are laying eggs in the chicken coop but not in the nesting boxes. I had two of my adult guinea hens die this weekend and I’m not sure why. Sad :(. Congrats on the farm stand job!
Oh no, I’m so sorry about your guineas. 🙁
I’ve read they are not very good mothers, and a lot can go wrong. With the fox around it’s just not safe for them to be nesting, so we are going to get an incubator and see if we can hatch some that way.
And thank you on the job – I’m looking forward to it. It took me a long time to find another job that was the right number of hours and something I think I will enjoy! 🙂
Mom gets up at 4 sometimes so we get our walks in before she has to go somewhere. I know, she is a bit extreme. How about putting up a sign, No Fox Allowed? Do fox read? Such a bummer they are ruining it for the chickens.
We sure wish that darn fox could read a KEEP OUT sign! It’s really starting to get frustrating.
I admire your Mom’s dedication. I wish I could get myself up that early! I found out now that I’ll be starting work earlier, so getting up earlier might be what I have to do, at least during the summer when it might be too hot to walk in the afternoon when I get home.
Wow, you are BUSY! I enjoyed your post immensely. Just one thought is that you could’ve made this into a couple of posts and saved some time! — Ithink that it’s so fun that Samantha likes to watch over the chicks. And, the guinea fowl laying habits sound puzzling. Sorry that I don’t know a thing to help you understand the puzzle! Last, I’d be interested in buying your body butter and lip balm online if you ever decide to try that! I hope that your great streak continues!
I didn’t think the post would end up this long when I started out. LOL. But I am trying to do one long post per week, so this was it (they say Google likes more words)!
The guinea fowl laying habits are definitely puzzling, and trying to get any clear answers online is impossible! I think we’re going to get an incubator and hatch the eggs ourselves. With the fox around, it’s just not safe for the females to be sitting on a nest. 🙁
Thanks so much – if I ever decide to graduate to selling my products online, I’ll let you know!
The Island Cats says
We’re glad that things are coming together for you. It sounds like this is shaping up to be a good summer.
Thank you, we sure hope so!
Bell Fur Zoo says
Wow ya’ll have been busy! We love the chicken run and the new sliding glass door. A big congratulations on the farm stand job that sounds pawesome and on Luke doing so well lately 🙂
Matt & Matilda
Thank you so much!! xxoo
M. K. Clinton says
Wow! You really have been super busy. I’d love to see the guineas hatch some eggs! I think you’ll love your new job and being able to sell your own stuff is great. ♥
We’ll see how it goes with the guinea eggs, we bought an incubator so we’re going to try hatching some of them ourselves.
I think I’ll love the new job too – fingers crossed!
Shadow & Ducky's Mom says
The news about Luke is great! I am so happy to hear that he’s calming down! It’s hard on them when there’s a lot of construction noise going on. When we had the new roof put on after the hailstorm last year, even our normally mellow Shadow was upset most of the day. (Luckily, I was able to get Ducky to daycare before the workers arrived.)
It’s always a “good busy” when you’re doing something to make your/your family’s lives easier, and more in line with your dreams. I’m very happy for all of you! Hopefully you’ll find a way to keep that wiley fox out of the yard so the girls can free-range again! And that farm stand job sounds perfect for you.
Looks like everything is starting to come together for you and the Dadz. That’s great! You sooo deserve it! ❤️
Thank you so much, Sue! As much as Luke did good, I think he’s happy to have the peaceful household back (as am I!).
That darn fox is keeping us challenged though, and it’s getting discouraging. 🙁
Monika & Sam 🐾 says
Big time congrats on the new job, the farm (and house) project work that’s getting done and the eggs. My goodness you HAVE been busy! 😍
Thanks so much! Hopefully things settle down eventually! 🙂
Mary Hone says
Congrats on the job, it sounds perfect for you. You have done so much on your farm, you guys are awesome farmers. Even on a small scale.
Thank you, Mary! I love it so much, I wish we’d been able to this when we were much younger though! But we’ll just do what we can while keeping it enjoyable.
Brian Frum says
Dang, you sure have been busy but lots of good is going on. We’re sure glad Luke is doing so well.
Thank you, Brian!!
it#s great to hear so much good news… and I’m glad you found this job… sadly people who selll their farm products became rare during the last years, so it is fab that you will be there to sell good products to people who will love it much more than the store-trashures ;O)))
Thank you! I think it’s important for people to have access to homemade products, and for everyone to support small, local businesses.