If you are reading this, you are one of the lucky ones, as I am... or blessed,
if you prefer to think of it that way.
We have reached the end of another year. 2017, which has been
full of disaster and despair, but also, lots of hope and kindness.
Desperate cold has settled into the Midwest, along with the
eastern seaboard and upper Midwest. I have been
preparing for it for a week.
Jester, as you see, did not want to get up this morning. I had just taken
those sweatshirts out of the dryer, and he was content to just lay there
and be warm, but to be fair, he had already been out.
Rarely does he opt to get back into the big bed.
It was time to pack these guys away. I particularly loved that Santa, I
think he embodies the spirit of Calamity Acres... welcoming
all the creatures here. I have a big Santa collection but no longer have the
shelves or furniture on which to put them... so... there is more paring down to
do in the future.
It seems like a month ago already, but on the 23rd, son Jim and his family came to have Christmas treats.
There I am back in the background, I was holding great-granddaughter Maci Lynn. I am not sure who had control of the camera.
Maci and her mom, Maddie... Maddie has taken to motherhood like a duck to water.
They had to leave early to go to a gender-reveal party for her best friend.
I am on continual... I mean CONTINUAL cute overload in this house.
This is me yesterday, trying to get some typing done. I did not know the camera was
laying there on, but I'm glad it was. This happens many times.
There is possum Fang on the deck last night, and I'll tell you something interesting. I love trying different things.
In the fortex to the right, there is a mixture of seeds, full peanuts, cracked peanuts, corn, etc., called "Critter Mix" that I get at the feed store. In the darker bowl where Fang is eating, there is birdseed in a blend called "Backyard Bird", made up of two kinds of sunflower and many other seeds. See what he is eating? I love to learn things like that.
The crows and squirrels will get to the critter mix.
This is the fifth night at least I have seen NO raccoons.
That is Spooky's tail end, Spooky, one of the feral nearly-grown kittens.
I have not seen Harlequin for days now. I don't know what has happened to her.
It was suggested I check my other outer buildings, and I will, actually, in a bit.
Here I come up on the deck this morning, lined tights under my jeans, two pairs of socks,
two pairs of gloves and hand warmers, a shirt under my sweatshirt, my Carhartt watch cap on and my Carhartt hood on. It's going to be like this all weekend (even worse) and I will have permanent hat hair for the next week.
You gotta do what you gotta do, but.... I am hesitant to get any large animals because of this, it has reminded me of the drudgery.
This is the heated water bowl in the old henhouse from which the
feral cats drank. It honestly looks as if no one is eating in there.
I did bed down the goat barn, the only dog house left, and made sure the
duck house still has good bedding... it does, and I noticed last night that
something has slept in there.
I quit putting food in the little red henhouse, despite the fact that the straw to either side looked as if something had slept in it... no one has eaten the food in three or four days now. The litter box in there is no longer used, but I have left it (for now).
This poor little girl hurts me just to look at her. She is one of the original flock,
now almost 2 years old... and has lost all her feathers, I literally have never had a bird moult naked.
Because of her, I did this (and she is staying inside, wisely)
Keith and I used to hang a light in the worst of winter in the henhouses.
This is, in fact, hanging from a rope he tied five years ago.
It casts just enough warmth, and just far enough above the
straw that there will (hopefully) be no fire. Of course,
I got up to check it six times last night.
I got up to check it six times last night.
I am praying my naked little girl, a brown Leghorn, makes it through the horrible cold coming the
next two days. We are supposed to have a record below zero reading on New Year's morning.
I did let the chickens out today, however, because the sun came out and they wanted out.
Tomorrow and Monday will be another story.
We actually ran an electric line from the big henhouse to the little red one, the hole where the line went through is behind the pophole door. It hung from the rafters in there, and kept one corner warm for the little birds that used to live there. IF I were to use this, I probably would not run a line again, I think healthy birds are capable of keeping themselves warm. However, that featherless Leghorn needed help.
I hung this huge block of seeds from a pole this morning,
it will be so interesting to see what goes after it. It smelled GREAT.
It is a new product which my feed store is carrying.
I hope everyone has a safe New Year's Eve tomorrow,
and are back here to see more adventures at Calamity Acres.
I thank you again, for the ninth year, for reading about our little place, and yes,
even though Keith is gone... it is still our little place, mine, Lilly's, Jester's, Autumn's,
Twinkle's, and all the wild things that live here.