Building an Ark

Well, we're not really building an ark, but we've had nearly enough rain to justify it. Most plants like rain. Plants. The plants like the rain. The fruit on said plants? Not so much.  

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But to get anything to ripen we need some sun darnit! These lovely tomatoes are just going to keep on being green until we get some warm temps and sunshine.  

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Look at those healthy plants! But no fruit (insert frowny face here). 

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This weekend we're supposed to get some sun. Fingers crossed! Then we can start worrying about what to do with 10,000 tomatoes.  

What Do Chickens Do When It's Raining?

Chickens are pretty decent at dealing with inclement weather. They know to stay out of snow drifts, avoid the wind, and head for shelter when it rains. Well, all of our chickens know that except for this one...

She is desperately pacing the fence line because she's looking for a way out of the pen. Her preference is to sleep on our front porch where she likes to roost on the back of a rocking chair. She clearly prefers it to sleeping in the coop with the other hens. So much so that she paced that fence for at least 20 minutes (at which point I got bored watching and wandered away from the window) looking to go over, under, or through.

She's like the kid who calls home from a sleepover. "I don't like this sleepover. I want to sleep in my own bed at home. Come pick me up." But I certainly wasn't going to get out there in a thunderstorm and explain why she had to stay in the pen. 1) following through. You said you were going to spend the night so now you have to. 2) being a good friend. You'll hurt the other girls' feelings if you leave now. 3) Mommy was enjoying a night to herself so she's not coming to get you. I suppose the forth option was going outside and letting her out of the pen, or even shutting her in the coop, but that would involve me getting wet. 

She finally compromised and slept under the nest boxes on the outside of the coop. At least she had the sense to get out of the rain.

Zoey the Yuppie Farm Dog

We bought our dogs when we were still suburban home owners. They went for walks on leashes, got the run of a fenced backyard, and used a doggie door. Our beagle mix dogs have made the adjustment to farm life rather well. They are happy to go on long walks in the woods sans leash, chase chickens, roll in manure, raid the compost, and smell all the smells on our 14 acres. 

Our poodle mix has not fared so well. She is constantly covered in burrs of various sizes, is too small to jump over fallen logs, and dislikes drinking water from puddles. She's our dog that requires regular haircuts, enjoys wearing bandanas (which the other dogs beat her up for wearing), and likes to spend all day napping on her own private couch (which is low enough for her to jump onto). 

Look at my pretty bandana. It has poodles on it!

Look at my pretty bandana. It has poodles on it!

She's basically a glorified cat. 

I don't know about those shoes. They look a bit ruff. (see what I did there?)

I don't know about those shoes. They look a bit ruff. (see what I did there?)

Our other dogs will eat dropped chicken feed. Zoey waits patiently by the breakfast table for her piece of fried egg. Which she daintily eats off a fork. 

I'm not eating this food if it's not in a bowl. Yes, I will make do with a frisbee. It's more civilized than eating straight off the floor. 

I'm not eating this food if it's not in a bowl. Yes, I will make do with a frisbee. It's more civilized than eating straight off the floor. 

She's our yuppie farm dog. 

Zombie Chicken

Roosters get a bad rap. They crow annoyingly at all hours, jump on the hens' backs whenever they feel like it (which is pretty much all the time), and beat up on the girls who don't follow the rules. Our Easter Egger had the bad luck to get on the boss' bad side. She didn't feel the need to stay with the flock and she wasn't having the wham-bam-thank-you-ma'am method employed by most roosters. You could see the rooster running at her when she wandered away from the flock. This girl would drop her head, fluff out her feathers, and pretty much dare the rooster to try to take a ride. Here system of saying no worked for awhile. And then it didn't. 

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We hadn't seen her around for a while and had to hunt through the scrub in the chicken pen to find her hiding out, bloodied, under some may apples. Poor thing was panting from thirst and starving. We pulled her out of the pen and set her up with her own personal waterer and food dish on the front porch. Given the chance she likes to sleep on the rocking chair

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She's still sporting this super sexy haircut (although I did trim a little bit off it so she could see). We're calling her the zombie chicken since we're not too sure how she's managed to survive with no flock for protection. As of now she's not laying (chickens don't lay after experiencing trauma) but she's running around the yard like a regular bird. She's a survivor. She's not gonna give up.