Wednesday, March 25, 2009

ready or not, here we come!

this morning at half past o'dark early, we received a phone call from the US Government. (actually, it was just the Postmaster from Towanda!) our peeps were waiting for us at the post office. so off Dave and A went, to bring home the newest members of our family.

these 50 Cornish rock cross straight run roosters are actually the first of several installments. next week we will get 25 more buff orpingtons, followed by 6 Indian runner ducks when the weather is warm enough to ship them. then, around the end of July, we will receive 50 more Cornish X chickens. so i guess by the end of the summer we should be on a first name basis with the Postmaster!

A was eager to help get the chicks settled in to their new home. we have a kiddie swimming pool that we keep in the mud room. the bottom is covered with pine shavings, and the chicks have a heat lamp, as well as fresh food and water at all times. the peeps will stay in here until i get sick of them in my house they are around 2 weeks old.

although both A and B would love to hold the chicks, we've had to tell them that only petting is allowed. even though these little guys will grow to be plenty big and fat, right now they are fragile and easily hurt, especially their legs.

now they're all settled in, and contentedly making little peeping sounds. we eat around 100 chickens a year, and we've raised most of our own chicken meat for the last several years. this year we hope to be a bit more efficient. we've found this breed to be the best for food to meat ratio, and I've already written the butchering date on the calendar. (June 17)

today G has been working diligently at making me a pair of cold frames. he's doing a great job so far, and in the next few days, I'll get them filled with some manure and dirt. after the soil has a chance to warm up a bit, I'll plant some cold hardy crops in them. i'll also use the cold frames to harden off some of the colder crops, freeing up more space in the little greenhouse.

we used the old window sashes from the house. after replacing all the unbelievably old and leaky windows, Dave had the foresight to save the sashes. now we're re-using them to make our cold frames.

and here's a (very poor) shot of our little greenhouse. it's already chock full, and I'm not nearly done starting seeds. last night we were up late getting some things started. so far we have:

1 flat broccoli

1 flat cauliflower

3 flats tomatoes (many different varieties)

1 flat peppers

1 flat mixed tomatoes and cabbage

so, even though the calendar says spring is officially here, the weather outside is still a bit nippy. but that's OK- we're going on faith... spring always comes; and we're going to be ready!


Wanda said...

Your husband has really been busy lately. I've seen a pig tractor, high tunnel, cold frames...all built by him...not to mention the kitchen renovation...of course A and B are always there to lend a helping hand...even more so I suppose with the cute chicks.

Anonymous said...

Wow, I can't believe how busy you guys are. Do you sleep? :)

Aww... those chicks are so cute. I didn't realize you could mail order chickens...too cool!

Anonymous said...

the chicks are so cute! do you put them outside at two weeks? ours are coming next week!

the cold frame is beautiful! be careful about those old windows - they're probably painted with lead-based paint, and could contaminate your soil.

i reeeeeeeally want a greenhouse. i'm going have plants everywhere pretty soon, and i don't think i have enough grow lights...


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