Time off work?

I had last week off from work in preparation for being there a bunch while my partner is on maternity leave.  I’ve found that a week off on the homestead though can be one of the most exhausting vacations you will ever have.

My father-in-law was replacing the deck on his lake house so we said we would love to have as much of the would as they would let us,  so with free wood comes projects. A couple years ago we had taken the wood when he was redoing a deck at another house and used it to build our duck house. 


On of the projects for this bounty of free lumber was a new path from the back door to the chicken coop. 


Put up some cafe lights we had as well to make it look like visiting the chickens was something very special indeed.



The second project was one I was a little prouder of.  I tore down and replaced the old rotting steps and landing to our lower porch using some of the recycled wood.  Before it looked like this…


And now ….



We are going to paint a resurfacer on them still, but they turned out pretty good.  I like the way they make that part of the house look a lot less like a place the Clampetts lived in before they left the hills. 

Well after an exhausting week off it’s back to work for some rest.

D.

I don’t think that’s right 

With summer in full effect the garden is doing very well.


Our bean teepee is approaching the peak and starting to set some beans.


The corn is about 7 foot tall at this point.



We had to pull our our red potatoes out of the ground earlier than ideal.  One of the ducks decided to go broody in the middle of the potato plants, and started uncovering some of the potatoes.  We chased her off long enough for us to discover the poor girl had been sitting on a bunch of potatoes.


Once we harvested the potatoes into a bucket she came back and was trying to figure a way to get into the bucket to sit back on her eggs.  The poor girl. 


Oh well so long for now.

D.

Staycation 

Today marks the end of a week long staycation for me.  Lots of runs to the dump as we try to devoid our place of unwanted stuff.  Also took the opportunity to add a second set of external nesting boxes to our chicken coop.

They made added so much extra room inside as we removed the boxes from inside.


We also were able to harvest another bunch of potatoes, which had turned out to be much easier to grow then when we tried in past years.

I took a couple opportunities to do a little fishing and caught some of the channel catfish we had stocked the pond with last spring.


I’ll fill the rest of this post with some photos from around the homestead. Hope you enjoy.


D.

This and that

Life goes on here on the homestead.  We have been harvesting collards and kale for a couple months now, but yesterday we had our first harvest from our basil plants.


We planted a bunch of basil this year primarily for one reason: fresh pesto is one of the best summer dinners on the planet.  I love it.

4 cups basil, 1 cup Parmesan, 1/2 cup toasted pine nuts, 4 cloves garlic, salt, pepper, all blended in the food processor with enough olive oil drizzled in to make a smooth mix.  Tonight served with fresh tomatoes and sliced spiced peaches with fresh mint leaves.


The battles with the pool pump lead to the instillation of a new motor.


My next possible repair project may have just appeared in the bottom of the glass of ice water I just got from the fridge.

But then again sometimes things do get finished.  Now that the beans are up I finished putting all the lines up on our bean teepee.


Now it’s time to sit back, take a little break and watch the UEFA Champions league final.  I’ll leave you with a photo of a leopard moth that paid us a visit yesterday.


D.

When nature comes calling

Spring showers have turned to torrential downpours in the past few weeks. While it leaves a muddy mess, it has been great for the garden.



A contractor for the power company came through to clear the power lines on one edge of our property.  We were planning to get someone to come bushhog the area, but we wanted to do it after a blackberry harvest.  But hey, at least this was free and very quick.  Now we have a lot more space to do stuff with.


A windy day brought down a couple of the dead trees that had been hanging over our driveway.  Unfortunately, the trees were covered by a giant batch of poison ivy.


After work yesterday I had to make a run to the hardware store for some supplies to fix a pump, and when we turned out of the drive a black bear was running up the road.


The bear looks to be a couple hundred pounds, but I am more concerned by who I found in the goat barn this morning.


I know black snakes aren’t a real danger to me, but there are plenty of things here on the homestead that it could eat, including ….

That’s right we finally have some more ducklings here at Snuggly Duckling Farm.  Of course it wasn’t our ducks that did the hatching though.  It was our good mother hen.


We gathered up some duck eggs from around the yard (because our ducks lay everywhere) and stuck them under our mother hen who had gone broody again.  She hatched all three we put under her.  One of our other hens went broody shortly after this one began to sit and is due to hatch her eggs any day now.  From what we’ve read the ducklings would be okay with the chickens if they were by themselves, but with chicks around the ducklings may have a rough go of it.  But for now the ducklings are just babys amongst the flock.


Have a great race day folks. It’s off to the couch to watch the Monti Carlo gran prix and get ready for the greatest spectacle in sports the Indy 500.

D.

Every day a project

One thing I’ve learned about living the homestead kind of life is that there are very few days that don’t have at least one project to be worked on.  Whether it is building a new worm composter.

Picking up a load of free mulch from the dump.

Digging up an old satellite post that was in the way.


Cleaning out the goat barn has gotten a little more difficult as a task since Caro has shown the baby goats how to be in the way.


The big project for yesterday was turning a hole in the side of the chicken coop…


….into a new set of external laying boxes.


Of course that means it’s off to the store for to get paint for the boxes as today’s project.

D.

Happy Easter 

Happy Easter world.  Sunrise is something I get to enjoy pretty much each morning here. I hope  those who made it out to sunrise services throughout the world had a similar beautiful one. 


We added to our little homestead this week when Vivi gave birth to a buckling.


The other buckling, Shep, is two week old now and even though he was not happy when we disbudded him, has come around to being interested in us.  Or at least interested in my shorts. 


Have a great week world.

D.

Sweater weather

The days go by so fast sometimes.  With spring here and temperatures going up and down to almost freezing, we are trying to get as much done as we can.  We completed the chicken tractor.  We bought a coop from Tractor Supply and then attached it to a base frame with some wheels and added a door.  Thus the baby chicks moved from the dining room table to the great outdoors.

The ducks remembered where their house was and started laying again.


We got our potatoes in the ground.  We watched a video where a guy just cleared an area, put down some blood meal and then covered them all with a bunch of used straw. It seemed so easy that we thought we would give it a go.


The cat helped in her usual way of course. 


The temperature dipped to near freezing the other night so baby goat got to wear his sweater.


Have a great week my friends. 

D.