Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Screen doors!

It's been a beautiful few days here in Maine! We had about 4 quarts of strawberries from the plants we planted last year, and the raspberries and blueberries are just starting to come in. The rhubarb has taken off again, so we're still storing in the freezer, and suddenly the tomatoes and peas are starting to bloom. We've also had several salads so far from our patio lettuce. 

And with 4th of July, came 4th of July sales, so we branched out and bought two new screen doors! This is so exciting, because neither of our current screen doors closed properly - one of them the handle rotated 360 degrees! So it's something we've wanted to replace from day 1. With the new screens it's already super nice to have them open and get some breeze in, and this winter they should be SO much better insulators for the main doors. 


Barkley lends her help to Brandon unpacking the new screen door fro the kitchen. 

It look a bit more prep work than realized to get the doors up......originally we'd thought it'd just be some paint and attach the door.....

But most of the boards were rotten, so we ended up replacing pretty much the whole frame on both doors. 

The before! 

The after! It'll look SO much better once we actually power wash the outside of the house.....it's been green since we've bought it.....:)

The before for the front door - all glass (with gold accents!) and a handle that turns all the way around....

To a all glass, with a top portion that turns to screen in the summer. So much fresher and cleaner! 
The chickens are doing well! Brandon finished off the roof on their "safe area" using some leftover plastic panels and wood some friends had (so it's green.....but since it's behind the shed, you can't really see it!).  
He also ran a 6ft fence into the woods for them to have a larger area to roam in the day. 

The easter eggers and barred rocks enjoying the new run. Within an hour they managed to get out under the fence....all 7 of them. So we dug in the bottom and added some hardware cloth pins...

The bantams enjoying the run too. And a very hot Brandon. It's been in the 80's here with 90% humidity....blech! 

Someone else loves the new screen doors! Now she can just glare at us rather than have to paw at the door...:)

Sunday, June 29, 2014

Midsummer Weekend!

Midsummer is here! Wow time flies, feels like the summer has only just begun. This week the chicken shed was finally delivered and installed - so cute! So this weekend we (and that'll be the royal 'we', as Brandon did pretty much everything!) painted, adjusted and moved in the older chicks. The younger chicks are still inside, but we hope to move them into the outside brooder hutch this week, then integrate the whole flock next weekend! 



Inside before. 

Starting to paint! 

Our little red chicken shed! 


Partition wall goes up - back will be chickens, front is storage. 

The older chicks are ready to get into their larger home! 

The garden is growing nicely, lots of rhubarb and peas! 

Not as many blueberries as last year, but we'll still have some! 

First of a large looking strawberry crop! 

Adding the chicken door to an outer chain link fenced area. This will be super secure (dug in fence) with a roof, and then there will be another door to an outer large area which will just have a 6ft fence around it. This outer secure fence will allow us to leave them for a few days if we go away and still let them have an outside run to wander in that's secure from predators. It also gives a little covered outdoor area for winter, so they can still wander a little if they want to. 

Putting the 'brooder' hutch into the outer fence area. We'll move the younger chicks in there this week so they can all interact through the fence for a few days. Hopefully next weekend we can have everyone together in one flock finally! Then this hutch will go into storage until we have another set of chicks in a few years! 

Roosting pole made from some of the tree limbs that came down this winter. 

First night in the new shed, and of course they decide to sleep in the nesting boxes! Soon they'll hopefully be big enough to roost and we'll have some eggs! 



Friday, June 20, 2014

Birthday Goings On..


There was ice-cream for all.



A new ice-cream maker (thanks Mum!), which is just dangerous.....


A new drysuit....though this one was given to me by Waterproof, to wear for work. 




And the peonies have bloomed!

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Smores!

We tried out the new firepit we built over the winter. Worked great!
Someone decided she wanted some smores. So I gave her a blob, right on her nose....

Unfortunately the old girls sense of smell is not so good anymore, took her a while to realise it was there.....

New Truck!

Brandon and I swopped cars a while ago - he's now working from home the entire time, and only ever gets together with his boss every few weeks in Damariscotta. So it was better for me to use his golf that got 50 mpg to commute. So last weekend we took in the Rav4 and swopped it for a truck, which has already proved very useful!

The new truck in its first week of life.....with a yard of mulch! 

Summer is here!

Summer is most definitely here! We spent the long weekend cleaning up the garden, and the chickens have finally moved outside! Just in time for round #2, we have 5 regular size chickens that will make up our flock arriving this week! 


Barkley and Zoe guarding the chicks in their temporary accommodations. 

Baby Bantams!
The new turnaround spot Brandon worked on using his dad's tractor. This is to give us somewhere to park in the winter off the road so it can be plowed better without having to move cars back and forth all the time. One day maybe we'll get a carport there....:)

The shade garden and firepit. 

Site for the chicken shed, that should be arriving anyday! 

The garden is blooming (rhubarb is going wild!), planted everything this weekend, and put up a short wire fence to see if we could keep brody out....last year he dug up everything! 

The strawberries are blooming! Hoping for a big crop this year! 

Blueberry buds! 

The new raspberry trellis. Hoping this gets us a good crop, if not we might pull out the plants and start new - this is just what was there already, and we don't know if they're a wild variety or if someone in the past planted them then let them go wild on the property. Either way, we're hoping for at least some tasty raspberries! 

One day maybe i'll get flowers for in here! 

The goofy girl, enjoying the warm sunny day....:)


The boys, hanging out. 

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

End of Semester

It's finally the end of semester here, and on to summer. Usually faculty would be excited at this moment, however I start teaching in 1.5 weeks, so life is about to get more hectic. Luckily it's just a three week intensive class, and one that should be fun (larval ecology), so i'm actually looking forward to it, even though I know it'll be exhausting. 

Spring has most definitely sprung here. It was in the 70's over the weekend, so we spent a lot of time in the garden, and so did the chick-chicks! They had their first excursion outside into their temporary house. They were doing great until Zoe noticed them and kept trying to stalk them through the wire. Sigh. At least we can keep Brody out by moving his underground wire.....not sure how we'll keep Zoe out. I guess just let the chicks get big enough to chase her back...



Brandon's parents dropped their tractor off for us to use, and we had a BIG pile of dirt delivered. We're building a small shed as out chicken house and needed to build a platform, as well as build up the area we're closing off as a run for them so it doesn't get so damp. So Brandon has been having fun, though i've had to remind him it's not our tractor and he does have to give it back.....


I did a talk at the public library here, and my old neighbor (8yr old) came and listened. So I called up his mom and friday evening he came and hung out for a while. He used to come by almost everyday to hang out and feed barkley cookies, so it was good to see him again. He LOVED Zoe, and i'm still shocked she put up with him lugging her around....



And then there is always goofiness. Miss Barkley trying to tell me it was time to go home today...