and into the soup.
Since New Year's Day, we've had some fun here.
My brother Pete went into the hospital.
My brother Mike went into the hospital.
Both very sick, different hospitals.
I have been sitting with Pete, as Mike has a huge and loving support system.
My camera broke.
The polar vortex descended upon us.
I am behind on reading all of your blogs, and posting.
I am home today, as Pete is being transferred to a rehab facility,
and I want to get a flu shot before I go to Mike's bedside in the large
facility where he is being treated.
I have a small little new Canon that fits in my pocket nicely,
and works with the Canon program already installed, so without further ado, let's get caught up.
Keith got me some ski gloves from the North Face at Cabelas... and along with
hot hands inserts, they are really helping. My problem is that the diabetic fingertips are still
getting frozen, so I go out, do some of the chores, come back in, warm up, then go out and do the next set.
I have been carrying warm water from the house for most of the week.
Today, I carried only one bucket, to the goats. Everyone else got pump water.
Abby went through her dental in good stead, and has even lost a little weight.
She is only going out for short periods, it's hard for her to walk on the crusted snow.
The Protector of Us All is staying out a little longer, but on the three coldest days, even SHE did not want to be out there.
These guys developed heavy winter coats, and they are doing fine in their little barn at night.
We did turn the light back on, running a line from the porch over to their
heat lamp. Just the chick lamp is keeping it warm enough that they are comfortable, though the one blowing night... whew... blew the snow in on them. Ugh.
There are two lamps now in the old henhouse....
One on the "coop" side and one on the "feed room" side for Butch and Buffy... because look what we did on Sunday afternoon:
We actually caught them very quickly, and that frozen water you see was
after it sat all night long in there. I had just walked in.
These guys see me every day, off and on, ALL YEAR LONG.
They act like lunatics... falling over each other to get away from me.
I broke their water fortex out and put fresh water in there and they cleaned themselves up.
They were in for 3 days, but are back out now.
The place is a mess, but I am letting go of it.
You can only do so much, and everyone is safe and dry.
The ducks are much happier outside, and I have fixed up a nifty place
for them, I'll take a picture today.
Buffy the Polish hen can be found in her little nest box daily now. I think the light of the warmer
is beaming down on her. She has a nice little bed. And guess what? She has given us
two beautiful white eggs in the last five days, after at least six months of no eggs.
She is almost five years old!
Over in the henspa, the somewhat tattered-looking Ferdinand is riding high.
He has minimal damage to his comb, but two of the small roosters are showing a lot of damage right now, from the cold.
I got about half the eggs I would normally get from this coop this week, and I kept them in today again.
I did let them out yesterday, when it got up to thirty.
Normally, I would let them out as low as 10 degrees, but it has been too cold for too long, and I believe their systems are depressed because of it.
They do NOT like being in all the time.
I like them alive.
My neighbor down the road at the goat dairy posted that she had
found 9 of her 11 beautiful guineas frozen to death. I don't want that to happen here.
Look closely, because this will encourage all of you.... there are buds on the trees!
I was so thankful, because it makes me realize that spring will be here, at some point.
I still have not ordered a seed for the garden... I am taking it slowly this year, especially
after all this sickness.
On Friday afternoon, before going back to the hospital, I saw something phenomenal.
You have heard me diss the starling hordes many times... I know they have to eat, but they eat EVERYTHING. If the popholes are open, they go into the henhouses and poop all over... it's disgusting.
But Friday, trekking back to the goat yard, I became aware of hundreds of starlings flying
silently over my head.
Thousands upon thousands.
Double click on this to biggify it.
This went on for five minutes, and they were going from the southwest to the northeast, before the storm descended on us.
After a two minute delay, yet another flight began, and thousands more went overhead.
It was unbelieveable.
I kept hearing the line from The Fellowship of the Ring... "Crebain from Dunland" in my head, over and over.... because they were so silent.
I took a short video, I hope it will upload.
I'm going to try to get around to everyone's blogs today and tonight, and will start posting again.
Everyone, stay safe and warm on your cold farms, or in your own neighborhoods. Look out for your friends and neighbors, too, especially the elderly ones.
PS. I tried to upload the video twice... recently, I was able to upload some... but this one is just not going, sorry.