Saturday, August 17, 2013

Meet Elsie; Chicken Babies; and Getting Ready for Spring!

I've been flat out lately, with uni work and our family making the adjustment to having Nath home full time! It's a great adjustment to have to make, but an adjustment nonetheless.We have a new family rhythm now that we are all getting used to. We are loving having Nath at home, though! The kids have taken it in their stride, as if it has been this way all along, and Brannen particularly is loving 'helping' Dad do everything from cutting wood to weeding gardens. He loves putting his boots on just like Dad and puffs his little chest out as if to say, "Right, lets get on with it then!"

Elsie is the little one in the front.

One of the biggest things to report is, we now have our goat! She is being agisted at a friend's property until we get back from Bali, mainly because our goat run isn't built yet, but she has company there so she is happy. She is pregnant, hopefully with twins. This is her first pregnancy - she is only eleven months old. We named her Elsie and she is a Saanen x Boer. Saanen goats are good milkers, and Boers are good eaters, so we are hoping for the best of both worlds! She isn't the goat we were planning on getting, for a number of reasons, but she is a sweet little thing and we are very happy. I have been holding off writing this, as the lovely Jessie from Rabid Little Hippy and her family have just gone through the grief of their goat Anna kidding two stillborn kids. Such a sad story and even though there was nothing they could do I will be watching anxiously for the safe arrival of our babies.

Our silky hen became clucky a number of weeks ago, and now that we have a rooster, I thought I would leave a clutch of eggs under her and see what happened. None of the eggs she set were hers, she stole them all from the other chooks, and ended up with nine under her. A few weeks down the track we were very excited to welcome six new chicks into our lives. They look largely like crosses between Plymouth Rocks and Australorps, so I am very happy.

Silky and her brood.

Spring is just around the corner, I can see blossom buds beginning on some of our fruit trees and our blueberry bush is flowering. So many bees are visiting our garden and the birdsong is lovely. It's time to get organised for spring planting so tomorrow I am propagating seedlings from seed into toilet rolls and putting them into our greenhouse, to give them a head start over the end of winter, so they will be ready to plant when the warmer weather decides to stay. Tomatoes, chilli, salad greens, sunflowers... I am excited! This is a great time of the year in the garden, when we can really get into maximising garden bed space and eating from what we grow as much as possible.

Hope everyone is enjoying the first flushes of spring (or autumn, or fall, depending on where you live!)

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