It is hard to believe we have been here for almost a year. Some days are so long and other seem to simply fly by.
I have certainly learned a lot and experienced so many new things. Too many lessons learned the hard way, for my tastes, but what can you do? Guess it makes those lessons hard to forget. I doubt I will ever really fit in here in the way of those born and raised, but that's okay. (I am glad to have all my original teeth. *ahem*)
Most of the people have been kind to us, even if they laugh at us. Glad we can supply such mirth for the neighbors. Now, if we could not supplying their dogs with chickens, I will be happier. Yes, another neighbor's dog came into our yard last week an injured another of our hens. I finished her off and served her up for dinner the next night. After the October Slaughterfest, it just is not such a big deal. This is good.
We have so many projects we are in the middle of that my head fairly spins with all the things we need to do. It is hard to be in the house sometimes because they all seem to shout out to me and very few are things that I can actually be the one to take care of.
And now we are looking at planning planting for the spring while still waiting for winter to arrive. All the seed catalogs are filling the mailbox, but we have most of seeds we ordered last year since planting did not go according to our plans. It is very cold here, but there simply is not any snow. Not sure what that will be for irrigation this summer, but we do still have a lot of water available.
After seeing what is planted around the house through an entire growing season, I have big plans for what to do. A lot of what is growing will be taken out and replaced with what I want. Some of it has just been neglected for far too long and some of it just is not to my tastes. The fruits and veggies will go in the fields east of the house and my flowers and herbs will be in the areas closer to the house on the south side. The lilacs and other bushes and trees will all be seriously pruned back and some more just pulled completely.
I have been learning so much about herbs and all the wonderful things they can do besides just making our food taste yummy that I am looking forward to planting a bunch of new things that I can use. It will be nice not to have to buy some of the things I use a lot like lavender and calendula and comfrey. Hopefully, the weather will cooperate better this and the that the tractor will work because there is simply too much to manage by hand.
I will try to share some of these new things as I am able. I have been blending my own herbal teas after buying some wonderful blends when I was in Portland. It is so much fun! Some of the herbs are ones I have grown and dried and some are ones I have bought.
I gave someone here a jar of my favorite ones for her birthday. She says it smells too good to drink and keeps the jar open by her chair to just sniff! I must admit that it does smell amazing and it is awfully pretty. It is a blend of mint from the grove, lemon balm, lavender, rose, chamomile, bachelor buttons and calendula. I only hope I have enough to use until I get more growing!
I am hoping also to restart knitting lessons soon as I have completely forgotten what to do. My sister knitted me the most beautiful scarf for Christmas, but I still have my first washcloth stuck on the needles. Maybe I will be able to knit some gifts for next Christmas. Maybe I will have the washcloth finished by then.
I am also hoping to get going on cheesemaking and soapmaking . I have everything, but the time to get it all done. I am not sure where the time goes as I rarely leave the house, but go it does. We are doing more directed lessons three times a week again. I think it will work well this way. The other morning though, I just shooed the boys out back to play in the warmish sunshine. They learn so much just being out there playing.
Cupcake and I love to sit out on the back steps and just hang out with the chickens. They love to come right up and will eat out of my hands. It's all good-except the poop. Keeping them in the backyard keeps them further from the neighbor dogs and I love to see them out my kitchen window. They just leave dropping all over though. Of course, versus Buttercup's droppings the chickens are nothing!
I am amazed at how relaxing hanging out with the chickens can be. They are such comical little creatures and oh so busy. I have even gotten really good at talking like them and they answer me. They should be old enough to be laying at any time. I am looking forward to fresh eggs as I have been buying them since the big hens molted and stopped laying this fall.
Hope you all having a wonderful day and thanks for stopping by!