Friday, 28 December 2007
Sunday, 4 November 2007
Whole Lotta Rosie
Finally - yesterday morning I found a blue egg in the nest box. At first I though it was Rosie's as she was sitting in the cube. But this morning I caught Ruby actually on the nest. Two lovely 50g, bluey-green eggs!What a lovely selection of egg colours I'm getting now! And Rosie and Bambi haven't started yet, so it can only get better.
Thursday, 25 October 2007
We had a very grand room overlooking the estuary (you can see the windows of our room on the first floor, to the left of the chimney stack, in the curved roof). The bed was enormous, plus we had a lounge area with a couple of comfy sofas overlooking the bay. Dad and Stepmum had arranged a bottle of chilled champagne to be waiting for us in the room and the hotel provided a beautiful basket of fruit as a gift (it was supposed to be an anniversary treat, but we were a month early to coincide with half term). This was our room - behind where I stood to take the picture was the six foot bed! There were two more windows overlooking the bay to the right of the room out of camera shot, and three more windows to the left!
The food in the restaurant was wonderful, customer service second to none - nothing was too much trouble. On the way we had stopped at a pub for lunch. Mr Owl had a ploughmans with a tiny piece of bread and a huge piece of cheese. When he asked for another piece of bread he was told he would have to pay extra! He just had to try this again in the Blakeney Hotel! They serve beautiful, home made bread rolls with their meals. So he asked for another. And he got it, without a murmur. And wine on the house the second evening because our starters were delayed on the first evening. And after dinner coffee served in our room because we didn't want to go to the lounge. Completely pampered - bliss! This was the view from our window:
And Blakeney itself is a lovely place. We wandered the streets, browsed in the gift shops and went out on the seal boat from Morston.
But enough is enough and this morning I really needed a cuddle from my boys. It's lovely to have a bit of grown up time to ourselves and we plan to make this an annual thing - two nights a year in a posh hotel to touch base and rediscover us as grownups. But heaven is hearing that shout "Mummy and Daddy are here!" and feeling little arms thrown around your neck and legs around your waist and being hugged as if lives depended on it.
That feeling lasted approximately half an hour. Oh well, will have to wait 'til next year now!
But today I can see that all her new quills are opening with little tufts of ginger feathers poking through. She'll soon be fully dressed again! In the meantime I could stuff a duvet with all the feathers around the garden!
Tuesday, 16 October 2007
Monday, 15 October 2007
Then there is little Bambi. Mo and Bo seem to have established themselves in the middle of the pack, but poor Bambi is most definitely at the bottom. I used to think araucanas were scatty because they couldn't see properly, but Bambi has no such excuse. She really is a featherbrain! But she is very decorative, and someone has to be at the bottom. And she doesn't seem to mind. She has dug herself a little nest under one of the hebes in the run. There she lies until she spots a food opportunity, then sneaks out and grabs it before going to ground again. I just can't wait to see what colour eggs she will lay, although it's unlikely she will produce any this side of Christmas.
The new girls have settled in really wells, only a week and there is very little pecking and they are out freeranging with the older girls and coming in for their food at bed time.
Saturday, 6 October 2007
I found out last night that there was a supplier of pure breed and hybrid chickens just down the road from where I live! I've passed it many a time and not realised what was there (which may be a good job!) Anyway, it was middle sons birthday and he was moaning that he hadn't had any thomas tank engine toys, so I asked if he'd like a chicken instead. He was delighted, so we went shopping. The other two boys had their birthdays 3 weeks ago, so I had to get them one each as well.
In all honesty I have been angling for some new chickens for a while. I can't keep up with the demand for eggs and my older girls are laying less now the nights are drawing in. My darling husband was not impressed but he knows never to argue with a done deal!
Roley Mo is the black and ginger hen. She is a Merrydale Copperblack and should lay nice dark brown eggs.
Little Bo is the white hen, a Merrydale Snowbell. Should lay beige eggs.
Bambi is the mottled hen, a Merrydale Crested and has an 80% chance of laying blue eggs. If she doesn't lay blue eggs, she will lay a pastel egg whatever that means.
They are very pretty and friendly and so far there has been very little nastiness from my older girls. Lets hope it stays that way!
They soon had it well spread out and (with a few handfuls of mealworms thrown in )spent a happy couple of hours scratching about in it.
They had a dig in the 'safe' flowerbed, and even found time for a bit of sunbathing.
The butterflies were flocking around this sedum.
Bella liked the look of my veggie beds. I caught her eyeing them up but thought they would be safe. Just after I took this picture she hopped straight over the fence! Little madam!
I was supposed to be doing some work from home in the afternoon but it was just too nice. So oldest son and I went for a bike ride. Phew! I'm not used to it - we did about 6 miles (not bad for someone who last went on a serious bike ride about 6 years ago!). I didn't half sleep well last night!
Friday, 14 September 2007
Then came out again. She coped OK with the branch steps I made. Better than the ladder that came with it - if I'd used that, I would not have been able to pull the cube away from the run to clean it. The cube is attached to the run with short bungee clips around the legs. Although I can hardly move it myself, so a fox has no chance.
Big Bertha tried it next. I picker her up and shoved her through the door. She went in and out a few times. Had a good dig around in the nest box - then laid an egg! What a clever girl!
But here it is, all finished. They are all tucked up in bed now. But that's another story.
Thursday, 23 August 2007
Wednesday, 15 August 2007
Tuesday, 14 August 2007
Sunday, 5 August 2007
Got an email from a lady who had an unwanted hamster that she put on freecycle – he’s ours now! Went to collect him at teatime. He’s called Bandit and he’s a Syrian (I think) long haired little puffball. Very friendly and happy to be handled by me and the boys.
Here he is:
What a sweetie!
Then Dad and Stepmum called round for tea. Dad was obviously bored sitting in the sun drinking beer, so asked how I wanted my new chicken run building. Anyway, he cracked on with it and one side is now built – only 2 more sides to go, plus a door and the wire to put on!
Made a pasta salad to go with the BBQ meat – picked French beans and courgette from the garden to go in it. Yummy!
Ruby and Rosie, the new babies, are growing – I’ve just realized that they are now bigger than Bella, their coop mate. And they both cluck now – gone is the baby cheeping.
But they won’t go to bed at night – I have to leave them out and wait for them to go into the run themselves! Dirty little stop ups!
The veg patch is doing well, it’s great to be able to go out and pick a selection of tasty, fresh veg for tea every evening! I’m currently picking courgettes, runner beans, peas, broccoli, salad leaves and radishes. Ripening nicely are French beans, leeks, spring onions, cucumbers, carrots, sweetcorn and tomatoes. At least I think the tomatoes are ripening – there’s plenty of green ones but I did find an orangey green one yesterday! It certainly looks very pretty anyway.
Tuesday, 24 July 2007
So today I let them all out together. They were fine - Rosie has taken a shine to the top of the eglu run. Their wings have not been clipped so they can fly out of reach of the big girls if needs be. And I think their voices are starting to break. Rosie clucked at me today instead of cheeping!
Sunday, 22 July 2007
In the far bed are: sweetcorn, runner beans, peas, courgettes, carrots and leeks.
Middle bed: dwarf french beans (note to self - this means dwarf plants, NOT dwarf beans, so in future do not plant at the back behind the broccoli), broccoli, peppers, spring onions, leeks, tomatoes.
Nearest bed: Assorted planted by my sons and eaten by the snails living in the kniphofia, radish, lettuce, cucumbers and nasturtiums.
I also have potatoes in bags, curly parsley in a window box and more tomatoes in another window box.
Produce so far = plenty of radish and salad leaves, peas, potatoes and one sweet little courgette!
It's a start anyway!
Watch this space!