Another day on the farm

Yesterday too much time was spent in front of the television watching history and pagentry unfold. As I was preparing our dinner I took the kitchen scraps to the chickens and the one that wasn’t thriving had passed away in the run. Yesterday morning, she was tucked in a nesting box facing the wall with her tail toward the coop and that didn’t seem right. She was one of the 3 Welsumers that lay the dark brown eggs. That reduces my flock to 8. Perhaps in the spring when chick days arrive, I will buy a new flock of chicks so they will be laying by molt time next fall. The Olive eggers, at least two of them, have started laying again and I have gotten 10 eggs in the past week. I was going to go back to a pure flock of Buff Orpingtons, but having hens that lay most all year round is nice, even if it is only a few per week.

This morning, I woke to another morning of snow showers, lightly coating the ground and other surfaces, but by late morning it has stopped and what had fallen was gone. There are no more days of that type of weather predicted for a week or so.

It seems that the local Health Department is as disorganized as the national Covid task force was. About 9 days ago, DH registered for his first vaccine dose and received a call the very next day, getting his dose a week ago today. That was the day the state changed the guidelines that would have allowed me to get mine too, but they said they weren’t taking anyone under 75 unless they were first line essentials. I immediately that day registered for my first dose and still await a call. Today, he got another call to schedule his first dose, but has never been given a date for his second. The guy that called gave him a phone number, but of course it went to voicemail, and he told DH that they aren’t giving them to the group I am in yet, though the state is encouraging it. I think husband and wife if close in age should be on the same schedule, but who am I but a lowly citizen hoping for my turn.

I finished the hat I was knitting using the second half of my Christmas fiber and it is so soft and warm.

And I began spinning some gray longwool to be the next band on the blanket, but decided I did not like the log cabin idea and pulled out the teal band and reverted to the block idea, so I am reknitting on a block instead of the band and will continue by adding the gray longwool after I finish the teal.

Because the miter of the first two squares are not properly aligned, I am working off the edge of the gray square and will finish that mitered block next month and add to the Parrothead block in the opposite direction to make the miters line up correctly. This will result in two large squares offset by a block so I will have to figure out how to deal with that to make it look right in the end. I think the braid you see in the photo above will be next month’s spin on my spindle flock and I will pick another solid to extend off of the colorful block.

While typing this, we got a call that the Xterra that failed on us last week requires repairs that are greater than 3 or 4 car payments on a new car, so the mechanic is looking for someone who will buy it for parts and we will have to figure out the next step. And the dishwasher has self destructed at 15 years old. I guess we are all getting old and breaking down.

“The End of an Error”

I suspect that if you are reading this, you are of like mind, or at least tolerant of differing opinions. The title was seen on a social media platform this morning and I think it says it all.

It distresses me that 45 has caused such division in this country that the inauguration of the President will be before fields of flag instead of people, behind high fences with armed National Guardsmen as the only “spectators.” He is out of Washington, lacking the class to politely and civilly transfer the power as has been done throughout history. But he isn’t out of office for another 2 1/4 hours. He abdicated his power months ago and the VP has had to try to pick up the reins.

On 45’s way out, pardoning his cronies and those wealthy who might give him a boost. Issuing executive orders to undermine the new administration, lifting travel restrictions to countries hard hit by COVID. All attempts to make the transition more difficult.

The events of the last two nights have been class acts, the lighting of the mall and the 200,000 flags, the memorial to those who have died of COVID that was so grossly mismanaged by 45 and his administration and the lighting of 400,000 lights along the reflecting pool in their memory.

I hope that Biden’s administration doesn’t discover too many disasters. I hope they will meet with a smooth transition, but am already seeing some of the same players in Congress who tried to block the certification of the Electoral College, trying to block Cabinet member certification. Players who obviously don’t take their oath to uphold the Constitution seriously, instead playing to their own political agenda.

The last 4 years have made me tired and stressed. I hope the next 4 are less so. I have lived through a lot of historical events, some to cheer for, some to stress over, some to mourn, but never did I think I would live through a President impeached twice in one term that has tried to removed rights of the citizens, block immigration, and tear our country apart.

The days lengthen slowly

We were given a winter prediction of warmer than average and average rain (not snow). Things are not as predicted, but I am ok with that. It has been cold and we have had lots of “snow days.” Not block you at home snow, just pretty to watch snow. I awoke this morning to a new coating on the yard, the third morning this week. It stayed at or near freezing all day and snowed off and on all day. The cover would thin or nearly go away as the sun came out, then it would cloud and snow again. When I went to get the mail at the top of the driveway, it was snowing hard and the sun was out. I looked for a snowbow but didn’t see one. As I went out to secure the hens at dusk, it was coming in again.

The lengthening days have all of the hens preparing to start laying eggs again. After buying a dozen at the Farmers Market last weekend, I got 4 from the Olive Eggers this week, 2 dark olive and 2 lighter green, so both of them are laying. Today there was a green one and a brown one (might have been the pinker color, it is too difficult to tell by house light). As I stood by the coop waiting for them to coop up so I could lock their door for the night, I noticed that 8 of the 9 have healthy red combs and wattles again. One is always reluctant to go in at night, she isn’t as healthy looking at the others and she has a very small, pale comb. I fear she may not be well, but she is a chicken, not a pet. If she shows real signs of illness, she will be isolated from the others to prevent spread, but if she is just not thriving, she will live out her life with them until the flock is replaced next fall or winter.

It is about time to sort through the seeds and see what else needs to be purchased as garden planning begins. After letting the chickens have garden time at the end of the season, they kicked most of the good soil out of several of the boxes, so some early spring work will have to be done to get ready, but not while the ground is mostly frozen. I have accumulated a good pile of cardboard to prepare the area that wasn’t planted last year after digging out the mint. That area will give me another 4 by 8 foot bed to use. As I plan to move the compost pile back to the northwest corner, I have started using that area between the fence and the bed planted with the garlic to put kitchen scraps until the garlic is harvested and that box moved. I need to get daughter and grand daughter on board to decide what they want to plant this year as well.

After my post yesterday, the state announced they were opening up Covid vaccines to the federal guidelines and I have pre-registered for mine. Now I await the call that will send me to the designated location to get it.