Today dawned cool, clear, and calm. Once all of the animals were fed, pooper scooped, and set free for the day, I parked myself on the porch swing with a mug full of coffee and the newest edition of Taproot magazine.
To the east there were tractors mowing and baling, to the west a single tractor mowing. If the weather holds for a few more days, the tractors will be here, mowing our farm and baling the hay for winter.
Today was the beginning of the two day hatch for Mama Hen #2. At dinner time tonight, she had 4 healthy fluffy active chicks, one just hatched, still wet and trying to find it’s legs, and one pipping. The rest of the eggs were put under her on day two, so perhaps there will be more tomorrow. Without the grandkids here, I am leaving her alone, hoping not to have the loss we had two weeks ago. The Memorial weekend chicks will be 2 weeks old tomorrow. They are beginning to get the tiny wing feathers that come in first. They are in and out of Huck’s coop with no trouble now, feeding and scratching where the hay bale sat before I erected their little pen. This morning, I finished putting a base on the second nest bucket for the newest littles. They will be moved with the hen late tomorrow and I’m sure she will keep them inside the coop for at least a few days. Most of today’s hatch look like mixed breed birds, all but one have some darker feathers, so they will all be culls, raised for 16 to 18 weeks for meat. I am hoping for at least 3 Buff Orpington pullets out of these two hatchings to increase my laying flock.
Today has been a crafty day. My favorite denim skirt has been getting threadbare. Each time I put it on, I realized that I shouldn’t be wearing it, but I didn’t want to discard it, so this afternoon, Icut the bottom 5″ off to make a strap, sewed the bottom together and squared the corners and now I have a new denim tote bag with pockets.
Late last winter, eldest son, who wears a knit hat from fall to late spring, lost one that I had made for him to go with a Moebius scarf. Not having any more of that yarn, I used some of my handspun yarn to make him a hat to wear as it wasn’t warm enough to go without one yet.
It is a nice warm hat, but just a tad big on him. Also, it has to be hand washed. I promised him at least one more before next winter, that can be machine washed. One of the installments from my monthly fiber club from Unplanned Peacock, was superwash merino. It is called Candied Violets, but the colors are complementary with gray, so I have spun most of it up since yesterday.
It is mostly a creamy white with hints of gray, yellow, violet, and blue. I ordered a slate gray superwash from her yesterday and will spin it and ply it with the white to make another for him.
The last of my May Spinning Box was spun into a mini skein that reminds me of a box of crayons. It will probably be added to my shop, though it is only 69+ yards of sport weight yarn. Maybe I will use it to knit trim on a hat made of the cotton candy pink merino in the shop and sell the hat instead.
Toward the end of the month, I am going to spend an afternoon with 7 to 12 year olds at a summer camp to teach them a bit about spinning. They will see a spinning demonstration with the wheel, but before that, they will each be given a drop spindle that I made today. A bit of fiber to teach them how yarn is made. Once they play with the spindles for a while, each will be given a chance on the wheel to spin a bit of yarn to take home. Each of them will leave with a spindle, a couple of ounces of fiber, and a piece of yarn that they spun on the wheel.
Yesterday, I harvested the garlic scapes and made garlic scape pesto with half of them. That was frozen in an ice cube tray, the rest chopped and frozen to use as garlic when I begin to make pasta sauce later in the summer. Last night, I harvested edible pod peas and chard and we enjoyed them with a chop for dinner.
Still loving life on our mountain farm.