Time goes on

Fresh eggs from the girl.

Wow, this month as really gotten away from me. I apologize, and I hope to avoid this in the future. 19 credits for this Fall semestre is a bit much, and I may be in over my head. I’m trudging on, though, so don’t worry about that. My classes are tough this semestre and I am in primarily intense electrical engineering classes. The only class I am worried about is my microelectronics class, but I seem to be catching on to what is being taught. NPN and PNP BJT transistors are rather fascinating, if a bit difficult to immediately wrap one’s mind around.

On the homestead, we’ve had a great many changes. Mum and dad built a new coop, one that is much more secure and sturdy with easy-access nest boxes. One of the free girls was producing amazingly, but was far too loud for this neighborhood, unfortunately, so we sold her to a very nice up-and-coming urbanite who lives in a part of town which won’t notice the extra noise. Then, a week after that we found out that Clever Girl was actually a clever boy, and he started crowing on a Sunday. At first, I thought that it was a neighbor’s dog. Then, after putting up the sides on a new cage for my rabbits, I realized that the crowing was coming from my yard. I ran over to the new coop and run and watched in stunned silence as Clever Girl stood perched on the dead tree branch crowing his little heart out. I caught him, and my brother helped me to put him down (a quick axe to the head ended that). I invited one of my EE friends over to learn how to butcher, as he had previously asked to be called over the next time we had a meat harvest. Well, that was unexpected.

The forth coop we built.

Three of the girls

Thus, we are down to four hens. They are fairly quiet, but we still have to run out and hush them sometimes in the morning as we truly do not want our neighbors to discover our secret. We are receiving about an egg a day, sometimes two (although it’s rare). Yesterday we finished filling a used Wholefoods egg carton. We’ve been baking cooking and pancakes from our eggs, and haven’t bought market eggs in over a month.

The rabbits have been growing up nicely. Last Saturday I put Josephina in with Godwyn to get her ready for December harvest. Apparently, my rabbits do not breed like rabbits – instead, they groomed one another for hours. I left them overnight, and will test Josephina for pregnancy in about eleven days since we put them together. Last Friday was a horrid day, as I awoke at 5:00 am to discover my rabbit cages strewn about the patio. Poor little Mina had scared herself and injured her back; I was afraid I would have to put her down. Fortunately, when I arrived home after school that day, I checked her one more time before making the final decision. I pinched between the rear toes, and she jerked her leg back to her body. That meant that she’s not paralyzed, just injured. So, I have been caring for a debilitated bunny in my living room and washing her daily due to the build up of urine and feces. She’s in a shoebox filled with hay and puppy training pads to prevent her from moving too much. In another week and a half, I will start on rabbit physical therapy and my littlest sister has claimed her as a pet if she recovers. If she does indeed recover, she will move in with our pet angora rabbit, Dimitri – that spoilt prince.

Mina, our partially paralyzed bunny.

Svetlana relaxing in the sun.

This past weekend my mum and I spent building an open air barn for the rabbits on the patio. We made it out of the same wood used for this old patio, and I don’t think it’s very noticeable. We used chicken wire as walls, which is not perfect, but it’s the best we can do. I think that my warren is much safer now. I even built the door!

Open air barn/rabbitry.

Two weekends ago I planted our Fall/Winter garden: oats, beets, radishes, turnips, carrots, onions, cabbage, cauliflower, broccoli, lettuce, spinach, kale, and garlic. The lettuce and spinach is coming up nicely. I have never grown oats, beets, radishes, turnips, carrots, onions, cabbage, cauliflower, and broccoli from seed before, so this is a learning experience! The tomato plants are still producing tomatoes, so we have been having organic BLT’s regularly around here.

Organic, mostly home-grown BLT.

Newly growing oats!

Fall garden greens - spinach, lettuce, kale, green onions, and broccoli.

Root vegetable garden.

Tomatoes!

Last Thursday my littlest sister and I traversed out behind our backyard to gather wild blackberries by the stream. We also happened to find some feral grape vines growing, so we picked them by the bunches. On Saturday I made blackberry pie, and this weekend I would like to make grape jam.

About 6-8 lbs of feral grapes.

3/4 of the wild blackberries we picked.

Wild blackberry pie.

This weekend we will be decorating for Samhain/Hallowe’en. It’s my favourite time of the year, and my husband and I will be celebrating our first anniversary in October. Happy Fall, everyone.

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Filed under Chickens, Farm, Rabbits, School

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