It is 40 degrees out as I type this, but we reached 60 degrees today.
I think that is the highest we are going to see for at least a week!
As Keith says, the calendar doesn't say it, but winter is about to descend on us.
There won't be much sittin' and visitin' on the patio.
Or swimmin' in the "pond", or the "duck pool" after today.
The deep fortex is going to have to suffice, and I'll have to fill it by bucket several times a day.
I made the duck's bed of soft prairie hay even deeper and more protected today, since they are not using Fort Apache.
Thank heavens Chatterbox the Ameracauna has regrown all of her feathers since she molted, she'll need them.
We are predicted to have single digit nights for at least the next six nights, though it looks like our county will dodge the bullet on snow.
We made hay while the sun shown... or, Keith got me four more bales of brome. It does not look as good as the hay we got at the feed store before, so I am a little disappointed. See how "strawy" the top bale in the cart looks? I got it out of the truck and over to the haybarn and stacked so we are good to go.
Nancy Thellman, if you see this... I am going to be calling you and buying some brome from you... yours was TOPS!
We did get one bale of straw today... to wit:
Half went into the old henhouse, and half into the henspa. Two of the roosters jumped down and set right to work in it... I hope it will keep them all busy as the temps fall tomorrow.
This old henhouse has only one outlet working now, and I have a heat lamp on Butch's side (where the feed cans are...) and the old hen Mary is using it.
Once before, I had a hen displaying the same symptoms as Mary...
see how she is trying to bend from her neck down, instead of flexing and pecking? That hen died overnight one night. I always wished I had the gumption to cut her open to see what was wrong with her. I thought Mary was just getting VERY old, but she does not seem right now, and I may have to have Keith put her down.
I am also worried because I never found anyone to put a new door on this henhouse, and there is a two inch gap where it no longer meets the jamb. We are going to single digits, and I fear what could happen to these birds.
Here is how she looks most of the time now, standing under the light. I think her time is just about up.
Look! Up in the sky!
We are seeing more and more geese moving now.
No, you can laugh.
This pitiful thing.
Chris and I found two trees in the storage shed. This tree is so tall, it touched the ceiling of our little house. You see it is QUITE large. It was also extremely rickety.
It was taken apart and put back in it's bins, and it will actually be going to the transfer station after Christmas, because it is too rickety to donate. After we laughed about it, we realized it was the tree that stood in the living room of our Victorian house we rented in Leavenworth the year Keith retired from the Army. We had a beautiful living room and parlor there, and this tree had to be tied to stay upright.
As you can see, one small tree replaced it, but the Big Reveal will come tomorrow.
The Pile o' Christmas is much reduced, and Keith has been so kind as to put the empty bins back out in the shed, except for the six or so still in the house. I am racing expected drizzle to get them back to the shed and my tractor unhitched and put away before it starts.
We did have one happy, happy find today that I will also share with you tomorrow. It made my day.
Now, I'll end with two remarkable pictures from the game cam.
No, these pictures are not remarkable because of the ducks modeling for you.
Do you see Lilly Ann, Protector of Us All?
She is on the pasture side of the fence, my friends. She was shut into the pasture this morning by a person whose mind was obviously NOT on her duties.
She was in there over an hour, when I went looking for her.
She did not kill ONE bird.
She actually walked in front of the camera several times, trying to get out the closer walk gate to the left of the camera. Then she laid down and calmly watched the ducks eating.
They equally as calmly ignored her.
She is my BEST girl.
I also surmise from this that all the birds killed in the yard were BECAUSE they were in her yard.
The camera is back out in the pasture tonight... we'll see what we find in the morning. I wonder how all the wildings will be faring in the intense cold. At least they won't have deep snow to contend with.
Tomorrow... the Christmas Reveal!