Grit Blogs > Livin the Homegrown High Life

A Little Catching Up to Do!

Jessica headshotAbout 2 weeks have passed since I originally penned the opening blog so it’s only fitting that I catch everyone up!  Mother Nature can’t seem to make her mind up considering that I got sunburnt one day and pretty much froze to death last evening putting boards on the chicken coop.  She did offer a surprise for the girls this year though; they actually got a spring break.  Normally we have so many snow days that the teachers are contemplating working on lesson plans for the 4th of July.  It’s all cyclical, we’ll probably end up with snow as high as the phone wires again next year.   Now for some updates.

 

The Chickens 

They are growing like crazy. I looked at their first pictures last night and couldn’t believe how much they have grown.  Their feathers are coming quickly right along with their urge to fly.  We had to build screens to cover their cages since one of the Speckled Sussex decided to fly up on the edge of the brooder.  Chad is convinced it was his favorite that he has named Harv.  Since they were straight run I asked him if it turns out to be a hen are we going to have to call her Harvina!!  I’m not sure he appreciated my humor!   We did have a few little poop incidents - diarrhea and some pasty butts.  Luckily the gentleman that I got them from is a great resource.  After adding in some baby grit and going to a medicated feed, things seem clearing up.  We had already been adding the electrolytes to their water and he said that helped out tremendously.  The chicks do have a treat that they absolutely love and that is their Baby Cake from Farmers’ Helper.  They go absolutely wild over it.

Harv or maybe Harvina 

The broilers are doing well too.  I would pretty much compare putting their feed in the brooder to taking a case of chocolate bars in to Jorja’s Pre-K class at snack time.   They are also quite the creatures of habit.  I normally go to the right side of the brooder to put everything in.  One morning I walked down the steps and could see them peering out through the crack in the side so I snuck around to the other side.  I stood there and laughed because they stood there like “wait, where did she go, you have to be kidding me we are hungry.”

The Rabbits 

Oh yes, we have rabbits, three of them to be exact.  After a wink to the girls, a friend of ours bid on them and then each girl had a bunny in their arms.  For future sales I think we are going to have to keep Aaron and the girls separated or we will end up bringing home the goats the girls have been eyeing!  They are doing a great job taking care of Thumper (Eliza), Oscar (Aurora), & Abe Lincoln (Jorja)!  Aurora seems to be the rabbit girl though.  She just has a way with them.  Everyone’s comment though has been that we will end up with babies so I did some online research and we have 2 males and a female.  I’m pretty sure we didn’t separate them in time so I guess we will see what happens at the end of the month!

Left to Right  Thumper Oscar and Abe Lincoln   

The Coop 

The coop, or The Mansion, is coming along great.  One more day of work on it and we will be able to start the inside.  It’s a 12’ x 12’ addition onto the shed that we raised our calves in.  I think it will be a good start but we may end up taking over the shed too.  The other addition is for the pigs anyway!  We’ve used rough cut hemlock and pine and have been able to recycle a good many of the nails.  It amazes me how Chad can straighten a nail.  I wonder how many pounds of nails are thrown away each year that could be used for something.  We are also going to be able to reuse some old windows and a door.  It has been a lot of work and splinters but all well worth it.  Chad’s cousin has been a great help too and has taught us along the way. There will definitely be an upcoming post solely about building this coop!

The coop framed up and ready for sides and a roof 

Well I think that’s about everything that has been happening around here.   We are on the lookout for pigs now and who knows what else!  Until next time!