Saturday, February 9, 2013

After Nemo

west side of the house--how nice to see the new bright white paint
against the white of the snow  
Jim Cantore called it "Nemo." And I guess over to the east, it was a blizzard.  Here, in the west of the state, it was just a beautiful snowstorm with some much needed snow.  20" fell here and we didn't seem to have any of the high winds that can take down those giant white pines  looming over the house. 

garage from my newly purchased woods
snow sliding off the slate roof--a good thing

Last week we were able to purchase a little more than an acre of woods on our north side. Such a relief. We have been trying to obtain this for several years to maintain a buffer.
John's brand new car is buried to the side of the barn/woodshed.  There are six cars here right now--too many.

Slate roofs are fun in the snow. Made so that the snow will slide off, it makes quite a rumble, when it does.  And hope you aren't standing below it at that time. We always cheer very loudly when we see or  hear it happen because it means we won't be facing ice jams.  
I am currently redecorating that room upstairs that juts out above the bay window--making a new master bedroom for us.  Pictures later on that project.  In fact, I need to do some inside blogging, as I haven't done that at all.

chicken run and coop
steps into the coop--somewhat protected so the snow is not so deep

inside the coop--PICNIC!! with waffles, squash and apples

and crack--I mean, scratch
Down to see how the chickens are. No worries, they have a very tight and secure home. Also with a slate roof, but it is not steep enough for the snow to slide off, so I need to check and see if it needs shoveling off. Not today, I think.
the beehive was wrapped in a tarp to weather the winds

Lulu looks like she stood in the snow all night

a bit of Friesian fun

this puffy bluebird and two others spent the morning eating suet

The west side of the coop has steps that go right into the coop. But I don't bother about this snow. I usually go in the other door through the garden shed.  From the shed side I collect eggs, and can fill food supplies without getting my feet dirty. The eleven girls produce 6 or 7 eggs a day at present. Those pallets are for a spring project building a new hot composting method that I want to try.

Today it is acorn squash--they LOVE the seeds--apples and waffles.  The reality--unlike all the beautiful pictures of pens and hens on Pinterest--is that chickens are messy. They poop--a lot. And they make dust out of their shavings and poop. A good dust mask is a good plan. Dust webs form all over.  Just a farm reality check for those who want chickens. And because they can't get out today, they get some scratch inside. This keeps them turning over their pine shavings which I keep quite deep in the winter and leave the droppings as it creates a warm home.  And it doesn't really smell much in the winter.  The wooden floor is covered with a roofing material that makes it easier to clean up later.  I have been running a heat lamp because the temps have been around 0 quite a bit lately.  Not necessary, as they would be fine, but why let them work so hard to stay alive?  The water is on a heater so it never freezes.

Here is the beehive all wrapped in a tarp.  Not the best idea since moisture may build up inside.  But since the bees are not flying out right now, I decided to give them a little protection from the storm winds.  I am crossing my fingers that I will come out of the winter with a colony still.  I hear faint buzzing coming from inside still.
I plan to take the tarp off in a day or so.

And because I am going to miss them all (they are moving to Colorado soon) I went across the road to get some Friesian pictures.  This is Lulu, green halter, my favorite.   And her mother, Namke, purple halter.  They love the snow and it looks like, rather than go into their barn last night, they stood out in the storm.

We stirred up a little more action because nothing is more magnificent than black horses against all the powdery white snow.

The blue birds are monopolizing the feeders today.  Kind of pushy little guys, but so beautiful all that blue against the white background.

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