Friday, November 27, 2020

Reminders of our Old Life

 We are so settled in with Covid quarantine that we hardly notice Anymore, except for some times when we can't help but compare...

For instance yesterday was Thanksgiving Day and I wanted to cook the full, traditional meal, complete with pie, homemade gravy, homemade stuffing and yam casserole. I figured since no one was coming over, I would relax and take my time...the meal would be ready when it was ready. forward to 10 am and literally everything was done and we were sitting down to eat.

This morning I wanted to take the day to decorate for Christmas. Wanted to take my time and really do it right.

Here it is right now at 11:24 and we are all done, packed up and watching a movie.

It reminds me how much speed we used to need all the time because we were so busy all the time.

Hm. Well, Merry Xmas 😁

Sunday, November 22, 2020

The Eagle, the Hawk, and "The Mother"

As we learn more about predatory ecosystems with our chickens, Chapter 2 is about aviary predators.   Last weekend at about 2pm (the time when we usually let our hens out to free range) we noticed a hawk sweeping over the chicken field, taking a strategic roost overlooking the chicken pen. 

That's predator #1. 

Then we noticed high up in the sky a bald eagle was circling slowly. No we're not kidding, this was an honest to goodness bald eagle. Predator #2, both at the same time.

So, of course we did not open the chicken pen that afternoon. 

After 20 minutes or so of circling, the eagle lost patience. In a hissy fit of frustration, the eagle dove into our field, scraping his talons along the ground for anything that might be under there. He left empty handed, as far as we could tell. He did not have a chicken, at any rate. 

Later on that evening, in an unrelated event, the boys started referring to me as "The Mother." Not mom, or mother... "The Mother." as in 'don't throw paper towels at "The Mother"' or "don't anger "The Mother." This moniker has stuck for over a week now, yay.

Saturday, November 07, 2020

Chicken Hippies and the Air Fryer

 So we all started feeling sorry for the chickens all penned up next to the coop. In the afternoons, between 2 and 8pm, the boys started letting them out for some scratch and run time. It was nice for the chickens and assuaged our guilt about their lifestyle.

Of course, after 2 months of this hippy behavior, the foxes came back and ate 10 chicks in one day. So now we will be more focused on keeping the chickens in the pen instead of having so much leisure time for them.

In other news, I finally broke down and bought an air fryer a few weeks ago. We have enjoyed this purchase very much -- it makes outstanding french fries, tater tots and chicken fingers. Emboldened by that success, we have literally tried air frying every food that comes in the house. 

Air Fryer foods that are a little "meh"

  • beets (unless you slice them really thin and commit to beet chips)
  • bananas (see "beets" above)
  • kale -- if you like kale chips, then definitely put this in the air fryer. Our problem is that we don't like kale chips.
  • green tomatoes -- definitely bread them, and then be prepared for them to taste like pickles.

Air Fryer foods that are a huge success

  • Mozzarella sticks (OMG OMG OMG)
  • Any potato product (fries, tots, etc.) 
  • Fish sticks (soak cod in milk, then bread and air fry)
  • Chicken nuggets (homemade or store bought)
  • Pizza rolls (although my boys prefer the soggy microwaved version) 

We have also purchased three robot vacuums (one for each floor and one for the office) because with all of this stay at home time, the floor is taking a beating. We run them all the time. It's ironic, I know -- we are literally home all the time due to the pandemic, but we can't be bothered with vacuuming in any way.