Saturday, July 23, 2016

Simple Saturdays Blog Hop July 23rd

    

Welcome to the Simple Saturdays Blog Hop. We can't wait to see what you have to share this week! 

This blog hop is brought to you by a group of wonderful co-hosts committed to the Simple way of Life and learning to be Self Reliant.  Simple Saturdays Blog Hop is a way for each of us to share the various ways we are learning to be more Self Reliant in our homes and on our land. This is all about building community, learning new skills and growing more self-sufficient!


Please join us, submit YOUR Self-Reliant post (maybe even 2 or 3), browse around, visit a site or two and learn some new Simple tips or Self Reliant How'To's!

Sunday, July 17, 2016

A Week of Homestead Photos July 10th - 16th

We have been working on my hubby's genealogy as one of the oldest country kid's 4H projects. We found that he is related to the 7th Earl of Douglas (also known as James the gross.) *giggle* James and King James II of Scotland didn't get along to well. Probably because King James stabbed the guy 26 times and threw his body out a window. Seriously! I can't make this stuff up!! Amazing where 4H can take you!

Our hearts broke this week when the national spotlight got too close to home. My father is a retired police officer. He took another job serving the public after he retired, as a bailiff. My dad retired from the court house in Berrien County where two bailiffs where gunned down.  He knew both of the men who died and is taking it rather hard. Our family, friends, and neighbors rallied around him with love and support and that made me smile.

Our garden is growing, our ducks are jerks, and life goes on. It has been a busy week of ups and down, lots of activities, and well this mama is exhausted!

So what made me smile this week?

Saturday, July 16, 2016

Simple Saturdays Blog Hop July 16th

    

Welcome to the Simple Saturdays Blog Hop. We can't wait to see what you have to share this week! 

This blog hop is brought to you by a group of wonderful co-hosts committed to the Simple way of Life and learning to be Self Reliant.  Simple Saturdays Blog Hop is a way for each of us to share the various ways we are learning to be more Self Reliant in our homes and on our land. This is all about building community, learning new skills and growing more self-sufficient!


Please join us, submit YOUR Self-Reliant post (maybe even 2 or 3), browse around, visit a site or two and learn some new Simple tips or Self Reliant How'To's!

Thursday, July 14, 2016

Oops, They Did It Again......

If you have been around our blog a while, you may remember last year how we got Betty (our female duck) a boyfriend because she was getting, ummm, mature, and that was one need I could not fill for her. Of course they "fell in love" and had a little family. If you aren't familiar with the whole sorted story, you can read all about it over at our Duck Tales. Trust me, they are some crazy ducks!

Well as spring rolled around this year, Bill and Betty decided they wanted to do the whole parenting thing again. How do I know? Well because eggs stopped showing up where they should have been, and Betty would disappear for long periods of time. That could only mean on thing, she wanted to be broody (aka hatch some more kids.)

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Meet Lizzy

Our Critter Spotlight falls this week on one of our odder critters here at the homestead, Lizzy the leopard gecko. Why do we have a gecko?!?! Oh well that is an easy question to answer, because we homeschool of course! She was our "classroom" pet this year and helped the oldest country kid learn all about the food web and other nature based scientific topics. Not to mention, she is just plan cool!

Sunday, July 10, 2016

A Week of Homestead Photos July 3rd - 9th

And another week is in the books. We have had lots of Leave it to Beaver summer fun this week playing with friends, swimming, going to the park and watching a free movie at the near by mom and pop theater. I love that we still live in an area where there are free and affordable things for kids to do in the summer.

We stayed home this year for the fourth and had a small backyard display. Our neighbors joined us as we oohhhed and ahhhed over our little fountains. In this crazy world, it was so nice not to have to fight the crowds or deal with other people's drama.

Hubby and I also celebrated our 13th anniversary this week as well. 13 loooooong years. LOL Here is to another 13 long years.

So what made me smile this week?

Saturday, July 9, 2016

Simple Saturdays Blog Hop July 9th

    

Welcome to the Simple Saturdays Blog Hop. We can't wait to see what you have to share this week! 

This blog hop is brought to you by a group of wonderful co-hosts committed to the Simple way of Life and learning to be Self Reliant.  Simple Saturdays Blog Hop is a way for each of us to share the various ways we are learning to be more Self Reliant in our homes and on our land. This is all about building community, learning new skills and growing more self-sufficient!


Please join us, submit YOUR Self-Reliant post (maybe even 2 or 3), browse around, visit a site or two and learn some new Simple tips or Self Reliant How'To's!

Thursday, July 7, 2016

Cave Tools Rib Roast Rack

I am so excited to bring you another great product from Cave Tools! If you remember back in February I was contacted by the company to try out their Wood Chip Smoker Box and was very impressed with not only the amazing quality but the affordable price. So when Cave Tool asked if I would like to try out another of their products, I jumped at the chance, much to my hubby's delight!

We love to grill out, but we also use our grill to smoke and preserve meats, so having quality tools to use is important. Cave Tools didn't disappoint with their Rib Roast Rack. As soon as we took it out of the box, you could see and feel the quality of the rack in it's thick stainless steal construction.

Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Meet Steve

Today's Critter Spotlight lands on our oldest bunny boy, Steve. You may not have heard much about Steve lately on Facebook or our blog because, well, he is just a quiet, in the back ground kind of guy. He isn't pushy like those chickens and ducks who always seem to want to be in front of the camera.

We got Steve many years ago at a pet store. *gasp* Yup, you read that right, a pet store. Why would we ever buy a rabbit from a pet store?!? Well because the oldest country kid had been begging for a bunny and we were there picking up something and well we are suckers for a hard luck story!

Sunday, July 3, 2016

A Week of Homestead Photos June 26th - July 2nd

What a week! Mother Nature is back to her bipolar ways. We started the week pushing into the 90's and ended with temps in the low to mid 70's. And I am NOT complaining! But this up and down stuff is really messing with my garden. We have been getting down to the 50's and even the 40's at night a few times. Sorry pepper and tomatoes.

The oldest country kid went to his grandparents for most of the week. We both needed a break from each other. It is hard sometimes to homeschool a kid on the spectrum. Yes, homeschooling is over for now, but summer break isn't really a break, we are all still here. LOL So it was time for a change of scenery for him. The littlest country kid and I stayed close to home, having fun in our own little corner of this crazy world.

So what made me smile this week?

Saturday, July 2, 2016

Simple Saturdays Blog Hop July 2nd

    

Welcome to the Simple Saturdays Blog Hop. We can't wait to see what you have to share this week! 

This blog hop is brought to you by a group of wonderful co-hosts committed to the Simple way of Life and learning to be Self Reliant.  Simple Saturdays Blog Hop is a way for each of us to share the various ways we are learning to be more Self Reliant in our homes and on our land. This is all about building community, learning new skills and growing more self-sufficient!


Please join us, submit YOUR Self-Reliant post (maybe even 2 or 3), browse around, visit a site or two and learn some new Simple tips or Self Reliant How'To's!

Thursday, June 30, 2016

How to have a Leave it to Beaver summer

I will be the first to admit that like other kids in his generation, the oldest country kid has a desire to be a screen addict. Be it television or computer, he wants to just plop in front of it and let his mind turn to mush. Since we homeschool, I think he spends more than enough time sitting on his bum in front of a screen for doing his work! Necessary evil I guess.

Recently my hubby and I got into a little discussion about how much time the country kids sit in front of the computer or watching cartoons. My hubby claimed that in this day and age there is no way our kids could have a "leave it to beaver" summer like we did growing up. I disagree 100% In fact his words lit a spark in me to do exactly that! Welcome to operation "Leave it to Beaver" summer!

Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Meet Bill

Today is your chance to get up close and personal with one of the biggest characters that lives on our homestead, Mr. Bill. He has one of the biggest personalities I have ever seen in a critter and his life here has been an interesting roller coaster of a ride. You see, Bill is one of the few critters here who wasn't raised here from a baby. And let me tell you, that has made a world of difference in his behavior!

We got Bill because our little female duck Betty was starting to get to the age of needing more "attention" if ya know what I mean, then I was able to give her. It was time to find her a man!! So, sight unseen, knowing nothing about him, Bill was dropped off by a Facebook follower of our page who had waaaay to many drakes, aka boy ducks. By adopting Bill, we gave him the opportunity to skip the oven, and find happiness, or so we thought.

Sunday, June 26, 2016

A Week of Homestead Photos June 19th - 25th

The weather finally broke! I was dying in those 90+ degree days last week. It is amazing what a 10 - 15 degree difference makes! The chickens appreciate it too as I have noticed they aren't panting at lock up time, but resting comfortably on their roost.

We are continuing with operation "Leave it to Beaver Summer" or as the oldest country kid says, "Why can't I sit in front of the (fill in electronic device)?!!?!?!" We have been working on our sidewalk chalk skills (I must admit, I'm getting pretty good), hitting a library in the park event, the country kids are learning to make their own treats, and of course swimming.

I also let them spend an afternoon playing Wii games. What? It's not like I didn't have an Atari when I was a kid. Ahhh good old pong...... It was so funny listening to them fight, laugh and learn to work together to accomplish goals.

So what made me smile this week?

Thursday, June 23, 2016

Helping Chickens Beat the Heat

Summer is here and the heat is on. Chickens do not do well in heat! In fact, heat can be downright dangerous for your chickens. We live in Michigan and let me tell you, going from negative digits in the winter to over 90 in the summer can be hard on not just us humans!

Chickens like temperatures up to 75 degrees, kind of like me. But once you start getting up into the 80's and higher, a chicken's body begins to go through changes in order to deal with the heat. One thing you might notice is a drop in food consumption, an increase in water consumption and decreased egg production.

Once temps hit the mid 80's though it is time to take action to help your chickens beat the heat, because no one wants their chickens to over heats and collapse.

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Meet Nate!!!

This week's Critter Spotlight goes to our oldest homestead kitty, Nate. At the time we got him, we were not thinking about his role in our family, but he quickly proved his role as a mighty mouser! What can I say, when you live in a house that is over 100 years old, you occasionally get a mouse or two during the colder months.

Now Nate wasn't always know as Nate. When we first got him, we were told he was a she and since she was born in July, we decided to call her Julie. Well our first trip to the vet gave us the heads up that Julie had family jewels and a new name was needed. Now, never ask a 3 year old what he wasn't to name his cat because Nate was then know as 9-G. See, I told you, never let a 3 year old name a cat. Luckily over time, some how 9-G morphed in to 9-G Nate Nate, and then just plain old Nate.

Sunday, June 19, 2016

A Week of Homestead Photos June 12th - 18th

It was the first official full week of summer vacation around here and the country kids have been having a blast! My goal this summer is to give them a summer like I had as a kid. My hubby says there is no way kids today can have a "leave it to Beaver" summer, so I am going to prove him wrong! Who needs computer games and screen time when there is so much fun stuff to do!

As for things on the homestead, the garden continues to grow, the flock continues to hide eggs from me, and life goes on as normal. The weather has been all over the map, even pushing into the 90's! That's a little much for this Norther girl to handle. But I still did my chores, weeded the garden, sweated my parts off, and then feel out in front of the air conditioner.

So what made me smile this week?

Wednesday, June 15, 2016

When you clean the critter shed and find......

When you are a homesteader, you learn to roll with the punches. Oh sure, you try your best to plan, but nature has a way of laughing at you sometimes. This was the case recently when I had the oldest country kid help me clean the critter shed.

Now I don't know which is worse, the complaining of a 10 year old boy about having to clean the critter shed, or the smell of critter crap on an 80 degree day. Both are highly annoying in their own right! But, it was high time we cleaned the shed, so with shovel and pitchfork in hand, we headed in.

Monday, June 13, 2016

Meet Ester!!

Part of the fun of homesteading is getting to spend time with the critters we care for. This week on our first ever Critter Spotlight, I want to give you all the chance to meet one of our amazing friends, Ester! She is currently our oldest hen and while she doesn't lay an egg everyday, she still pops out a few a week at the age of four.

Ester came from a feed store at just a few days old. She is an Americana and lays light blueish/green eggs. Now most critters around here are family pets, but this pretty girl has the grand distinction of belonging the oldest country kid. I dear say she started his deep affection towards birds. While we had chickens before her, and have added chickens since, the fact that she holds a special place in his heart sets her apart.

Sunday, June 12, 2016

A Week of Homestead Photos June 5th - 11th

We have wrapped up homeschooling for the year!!! The oldest country kid is happy, but the words "I'm bored" are already starting. Ugh. Time to relearn how to entertain yourself, child. Time for mom to bust out her craft supplies. This might be a looooong summer.

Things are starting to bloom and grow all around our property. While fall is my favorite season, I dearly love this time of the year. Watching the seeds I planted push up through the earth with the promise of a bounty of food for the family in the future always brings a happy feeling to my heart.

So what made me smile this week?

Friday, June 10, 2016

The Chicken Dust Bath

First time chicken keepers may be a little startled the first time they see one of their birds in the act of dust bathing. Why? Because it can look like they are injured or having a seizure! A bird flopping around erratically on the ground can be startling. Finding a chicken who has finished dust bathing, when they are relaxed and sleeping in a twisted manner, can cause your heart to jump as they may appear dead. Just ask my hubby who found a hen so blissed out after a dust bath he actually had to poke her to get her to wake up and move!

So what is a dust bath and why do chickens do it? The what part is pretty simple, it is part of a chicken's preening regiment. Preening is a bird's way of grooming its feathers to keep them in the best condition. Preening involves a few components, including the dust bath!

Wednesday, June 8, 2016

Banana & Walnut Cake With Peanut Butter Frosting!!

Whenever we have bananas that get too ripe, everyone at our house starts begging for banana bread. Now, don't get me wrong, I love banana bread as much as the next person, but there had to be something else I could do with my over ripe bananas. So this time, I switched it up on them and came up with a banana and walnut cake that totally hits the spot!

With some simple ingredients from your pantry, you too can whip up this cake that will make you a culinary rock star with your family. Easy to make, simple ingredients and best of all, it smells so good while it bakes, they will be drooling before it hits the table!

So grab your over ripe bananas, head to your pantry and gather up the remaining ingredients and meet me at your mixer......

Sunday, June 5, 2016

A Week of Homestead Photos May 29th - June 4th

Our garden is in and growing like gangbusters! The potatoes are going wild. I am so excited to see what kind of harvest we will get this fall.

It's been a pretty calm week here, well except for that one time the oldest country kid started a fire in the kitchen trying to boil water. LOL Yup, he turned on the wrong burner and I am still not sure why there were flames shooting up around the empty pan. No worries, I put it out quick enough and calmed a very upset young man. I am proud to say, he continued on with his cooking and finished making lunch! So proud of him for not giving up.

So what made me smile this week?

Wednesday, June 1, 2016

Homemade Bee Condo (For Mason Bees)

I know a few of you are thinking "why would you want to build a bee condo!?!?" Well, because if you garden, plants need to be pollinated in order to reproduce. Many plants depend on bees or other insects to help with pollination.

When a bee collects nectar and pollen from the flower of a plant, some pollen from the stamens (the male reproductive organ of the flower) sticks to the hairs of the bee's body. When the bee visits the next flower, some of this pollen is rubbed off onto the tip of the pistil (the female reproductive organ of the flower.) When this happens, fertilization is possible, and yummy goodness grows in your garden!

Sunday, May 29, 2016

A Week of Homestead Photos May 22nd - 28th

We had a battle for our porch this week as some raccoons decided we were their new hang out spot. While slightly cute, they got a little too pushy and we had to evict them for our safety and the safety of our flock. Don't worry, no cute trash pandas were harmed during the eviction. They were just repeatedly run off till they got the point. Oh and one of them sniffed one of hubby shoes and almost fell off the porch backwards. I think that might have been the turning point in the battle! LOL

We got more of our garden planted this week, but with the weather being so hot and humid, we had to plant a little then run inside to the air conditioner for a few. It boggles my mind we had snow flurries just a couple weeks ago and now we are baking.

So what made me smile this week?

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Mosquito Repelling Plants

Spring is here and summer is right around the corner, and that means more time outside enjoying nature, gardening, and BBQs with friends. That also means the mosquitos are back. Yes, I have already seen a few and I don't want to see anymore!

As you may or may not know, I am VERY anemic (the doctors are working on finding the cause) and I really need every drop of blood I have. Sorry, mosquitoes, but I'm not sharing this summer! Luck for me, Clovers Garden has a mosquito repelling plant collection called The Mosquito Trio!

Hubby and I recently made a new patio area with mulch, plant beds and a lovely table and chairs. I would really like to get to sit out there this summer and not be eaten alive, so these mosquito repelling plants are going to go perfectly in the new beds around the patio area!

Monday, May 23, 2016

Ring of Fire Hot Pepper Collection

I really enjoy gardening, the smell of the dirt, the feel of it on your hands, ahhh, the joy of spring time. Recently Clovers Garden contacted me about their Ring of Fire hot pepper collection and wondered if I would like to try it. Clovers Garden ships ready to plant plants. Who can say no to plants! I was curious, having never had plants shipped through the mail to me, how this whole thing would work, but I was excited.

What is the Ring of Fire hot pepper collection? Just a collection of some of the world's hottest hot peppers! Do you want to be the bravest gardener on the block? How about the ruler of every salsa contest from here on out? These super hot, but tasty peppers are almost impossible to find at a regular nursery (or even online) but Clovers Garden has tons of them.

Sunday, May 22, 2016

A Week of Homestead Photos May 15th - 21st

This week the flock has been working out the kinks of not having a dominant leader to guide them. The littles have become braver and are testing their boundaries with the big girls. While the pecking order is changing, for the most part, everyone is being civilized about it and no real drama has broken out, thank goodness!

I received a shipment of plants from a company who wants me to review them. I have never gotten starter plants in the mail before! The "Ring of fire" hot pepper collection included the world's hottest pepper. Yikes! Hubby is a little afraid of that section of our garden now. LOL

I have gotten my tators in too, but I am so far behind this year on getting the garden in. Of course we did have snow flurries last Sunday, so I am totally blaming Mother Nature.

So what made me smile this week?

Thursday, May 19, 2016

Minecraft Birthday Party (on a budget)

Recently the oldest country kid turned 10 years old. When I asked him what theme he wanted for his birthday, he had said Minecraft before I even finished asking. *smacks forehead* Ugh, that game he is always talking about and begging for screen time to play. I mean literally, if he isn't playing it, he is talking about what he will build next or he is reading a book on how to build his next great project.

I guess I shouldn't feel too bad as millions (yes, MILLIONS) of children across the world spend their days digging (mine) and building (craft) different kinds of 3D blocks.  This is a "sandbox game," because players creates the game themselves by manipulating the world within it (like kids playing in the sand). Honestly I would have been happy not knowing any more than that, but alas, I had a party to plan.

Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Heart Healthy Oatmeal Cookies

I love to bake, but with hubby's recent medical issues and diet changes, making treats has fallen by the wayside. It is both sad for me as a baker, and depressing for the family who loves my baked goodies. So after taking a baking break for a few weeks, I decided to get back in the kitchen and come up with a healthier treat even my hubby could have.

Now I am not saying I will never make naughty treats again, but I need to have something in rotation that even my hubby can have. Of course oatmeal was the first ingredient that popped into my mind. Since hubby doesn't liked cooked raisins, and adding chocolate chips wouldn't be as healthy, I had to figure out a way to make these cookies flavorful with just a few simple spices and boy did they turn out great!

Sunday, May 15, 2016

A Week of Homestead Photos May 8th - 14th

What a week of highs and lows! Our oldest country kid entered double digits this birthday. Where has the time gone!?!?! He is growing into such a fine young man (most of the time LOL)

Hubby surprised me with an odd Mother's Day gift.... another mouth to feed! Ummm geee, thanks hun! Really though, he put a lot of thought into the gift and I am delighted because she is the sweetest little rat girl ever!

We had to travel to Kalamazoo this week for the oldest country kid to take the MSTEP state testing. He managed to finish both days in just one morning! Talk about a smart, focused kid. Here is hoping he gets good marks. I enjoyed the quality one on one time we got to share that day as it doesn't happen often.

We had to say goodbye to our alpha hen. She was over 5 years old and had been battling reproductive infections for some time. I knew the end was coming and tried to prepare myself, but of course this hard on the outside, soft in the center kind of girl ended up bawling.

So what made me smile this week?

Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Homdox Silicone Baking Mat Review

You guys know, I LOVE to bake. But what I don't love is cleaning up after I bake. So, when Homdox contacted me and asked if I would be interested in trying out their silicone baking mats, I figured why not! I have never used silicone baking mats before, but I had heard that quality mats were wonderful to work with. After looking the mats up on the Homodox website, I was intrigued.

Why was I intrigued? Well, because I hate things getting stuck to my pans and having to scrub the heck out of them. I also dislike wasting money on parchment paper. I told them to send me a couple and I would take them for a test drive. I am totally going to spoil this post for you, because they rocked!

Let me tell you why they rock, because the more I learned about them and used them, I realized these silicone baking mats were NOT just about saving me clean up time! These simple mats do that, but what they are and what they do goes beyond my kitchen sink.

Sunday, May 8, 2016

A Week of Homestead Photos May 1st - 7th

Another week has come and gone and it has been an interesting one to say the least. We had a busy weekend of family fun planned and even though I had to deal with an ongoing medical issue (my darn anemia), I never let the country kids down. I was tired beyond belief, but we still managed to make it to all the planned activities!

With the weather so nice this week, we spent a lot of time outside with the critters. It is hard to spend time with them over the winter when the weather is so nasty, but there have been many treats given and friendships renewed this week. We also made a new friend this week.

I think it is time to finalize what we will plant in the garden and get it into the ground since our last frost date is here. I always head the frost dates as Michigan is notorious for changing its mind when it comes to the temperature!

So what made me smile this week?

Friday, May 6, 2016

DIY Upcycled Bird Feeder

I love all the birds we have visiting our property. What I don’t like is when they decide to eat all the chickens’ food! Sure a little nibble here and there isn’t a problem, but by the end of spring, every bird in a 20 mile radius seems to have gotten the memo that our place is the place to eat. To try and cut down on the amount of chicken feed being consumed by our wild feathered friends, we put up feeding station for the wild birds. The problem is cost, bird feeders aren’t cheap if you buy them at a store. But who says you have to buy bird feeders?

We come up with all sorts of DIY feeders that don’t break the bank. Last spring we whipped up a couple DIY Bird Feeder for Under $5. And while I still like them, we decided to do some upcycling this year. What is upcycling? It is taking discarded objects or material and giving them a new life. For our discarded object, we used tennis ball containers. I know, I know, you’re are probably thinking but she is a middle aged, over weight homesteader…. Does she really play tennis? That would be a big fat NO! But I know a certain dog who loves tennis balls. And your local school or university with a tennis team probably has boxes of discarded tennis ball containers that they would be more than happy to part with! One man’s trash is another man’s bird feeder!!

Wednesday, May 4, 2016

When Ducks Attack (And it's your fault)

Ducks are not like other “pets.” They don’t jump up and lick your face like a dog that is happy to see you. They don’t snuggle on the couch next to you like your favorite cat. Now don’t get me wrong, they can be “friendly” in their own way. Ours know their names and come when called. The enjoy hanging out with you, if you have some mealworms.

But, from my experience, ducks are not huggers. They don’t liked to be picked up, even though we have raised all but one from a baby. And they most certainly do not like being chased. EVER. Not even if the person doing the chasing thinks they are playing a game that everyone involved is enjoying. Because trust me, Mr. Bill, our male duck, does NOT enjoy the chase game that the littlest country kid has recently started to play.

Sunday, May 1, 2016

A Week of Homestead Photos April 24th - 30th

We did a lot of yard work this week, getting things picked up and improved for the coming warmer months. We filled in holes, added mulch, planted new plants, and over all I am exhausted! But I am so excited we also put in a blackberry patch!

We faced another new chicken issue when Ester decided to push too hard while laying and prolapsed her vent. If it isn't one thing around here it is another! Talk about a stressful situation, but I am happy to report all is well.

Since doing yard improvements, it has become the hang out spot for humans and critters alike. We enjoyed many a days outside with out critter friends. I think we are all looking forward to summer, with warmer weather and lots of treats!

So what made me smile this week?

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Vent Prolapse (What to do when your chicken’s butt falls out)

It was a Monday like any other around here, crazy and hectic. When the littlest country kid came inside to tell me that one of the chicken’s butt had something stuck to it, I was neither shocked nor surprised. Of course I didn’t know what he meant, so I sent the oldest country kid out to investigate. They both came back in to report that Ester has a tomato stuck to her butt. What?!?! There was a red thing coming out of her butt. WHAT!?!?! And then my mind snapped in to place and before I even made it out to the yard, I knew Ester was in a bad way. I just knew see had prolapsed, because if anything can go wrong, it will go wrong, and the weirdest stuff always happens to us.

I hate when I am right about something bad, and sure as shit, there was Ester with her butt hanging out. Her butt fell out or more technically, she had a prolapsed vent. What is a prolapsed vent? Well basically it happens when a chicken pushes too hard, for whatever reason. More likely than not, it is from pushing too hard when laying. As chickens age, their bodies, much like ours, being to weaken in certain areas. For Ester, her girly parts are getting old and worn out, and she strained too hard laying and POP, out came her inners.

Sunday, April 24, 2016

A Week of Homestead Photos April 17th - 23rd

After being in the ER last weekend, I had to take it slower this week. I had very little energy physically, even though my mind keep nagging at me about the things that needed to get done. After eating spinach every for lunch and adding in a one a day women's vitamin with iron, I am proud to say, yesterday I finally felt almost like my old self. Too bad I still had to take lots of breaks when doing things around the homestead.

Our annual Spring Fling Giveaway event is half way through with our last prize opening today. Now it will be over a week of giveaways closing, randomly picking winners, getting mailing info and send out prize. I sure hope everyone is having fun with these great giveaways from some amazing folks.

So what made me smile this week?

Chicken Swing Giveaway

When I asked you all over on Facebook what kinds of items you wanted to see in the Spring Fling Giveaways, you asked for it, so here it is! From Foul Play Products, it is The Chicken Swing!!! Do I deliver or what?

Our girls free range, so the idea of them becoming bored never really crossed my mind. But I know many of you do not free range, so your girls might get a little down in the dumps when it comes to extra activities to do in the run. There are just so many ways to entertain a chicken that not only stimulates them mental but also provides them with the physical activity they might not get being in a run.

Saturday, April 23, 2016

Pantry Paratus Giveaway

Today's Spring Fling Giveaway comes from a family run company called Pantry Paratus. Pantry what? Paratus is the Latin word for "prepared" and Pantry Paratus's goal is to equip and teach pantry preparedness. They want folks to eat healthy, wholesome food and their store carries everything you need to accomplish this!

I have used Pantry Paratus before and Chaya has been so helpful every time. When we were trying to get an old canner up and running, she helped us identify the parts we needed and worked with the manufacturer to get them for us. Now that folks, is customer service! And the cherry pitter we purchased was a hit with everyone in the family. The country kids actually fought over who was going to pit the cherries! That works for me! Or should I say they did all the work for me!!

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