Usually October is my most favorite month, but this October was difficult at the beginning and has continued to be difficult though the middle. Ugh. On November 1st I might throw a “I Survived October” party…assuming that I actually do survive it.
We usually go on a drive to enjoy the autumn colors, but this month was so difficult that we didn’t go on one. But there is always next year and, as I told EJ, when we lived downstate we would drive to Northern Michigan for our color tour and now we live in Northern Michigan so anytime we go anywhere we are technically on a color tour. So I’m ok with it. The leaves are now flying off the trees in a colorful rain and the temperatures are colder.
In preparation for the winter’s cold, EJ called the propane company. We are actually going with a new company that is less expensive. They came today while EJ was at work to bring the new propane tank. I had asked EJ if there was anything I needed to know or do or tell the propane guys and he said no, but they did ask questions that I didn’t know the answers to. Ugh. I hate it when I have to do something that I know nothing about–like pick up a car part or answer propane guys’ questions. I feel like an idiot. Oh, well, everything got hooked up ok.
In October, the huge ginormous spiders crawl onto the porch at night. That is not a good thing. A few times JJ came into the house through the door that leads into the living room because there was a giant spider on the door that we usually use–the one leading in to the kitchen. If I have to take Danny outside to do “his business” when it’s dark, I shine my flashlight around to make sure there are no lurking spiders. If EJ accompanies me, I make him go outside first to kill any giant spiders. The good thing is that the spiders lurk on the porch only in October, and then they are gone. And the other good thing is I am not quite as terrified of them as I was last year. I am still very scared of them, but I kill them rather calmly now rather than run away screaming. So I count that as a win.
I got tired of never being able to tell one duck or chicken from the next. I can identify Cuddles, Peeper, and Esther, the white Pekin ducks, because there is one male and two females and Esther is lame. Daisy, one of the Rouen ducks, has a blacker bill than the other two, but I couldn’t tell the other two apart. All the chickens look alike so I had trouble identifying most of them. So I decided to get the birds some Bling. For those who don’t know, Bling is expensive, ostentatious clothing and jewelry. I bought a package of colorful ziptie leg bands from Amazon that had cute little charms on them. The charms included 5 Flowers, 5 Hearts, 5 Lady Bugs, 2 Butterflies, 1 Superman, 1 Batman, and 1 Captain America charms.
With EJ’s help, I banded only the two Rouen ducks that I couldn’t identify. I gave them flower charms because they are named after flowers. The one with the red ziptie is Rose and the one with the purple blue ziptie is Lily.
The ducks weren’t difficult to capture or band, but we figured it would be more of a challenge to put leg bands on the chickens so we decided to just do 3 or 4 each day. Yesterday evening after supper, EJ, JJ, and I went outside to band the chickens. I captured the chickens and held them while EJ fastened the ziptie to their leg, and JJ videoed it with his smart phone. He uploaded it to Facebook and I can’t share it here. Bummer. It was really funny. Next time I will ask him to please use my camera so I can share it here.
We were able to band Henny Penny, the only one I could identify, mostly because she was so friendly. She is my favorite and she got a sweet heart charm. We captured the Alpha Rooster and banded him with the Superman charm. I figured the “S” insignia could mean “Sassy”, which is his name. He was totally not happy to be captured and he complained loudly. We were able to capture and band one more chicken and by that time the coop was in an uproar with Sassy shouting alarms and growling, and the hens echoing alarm, so we decided that that was enough for the day.
EJ and I banded three more chickens today. (JJ stayed inside to study.) The first one we caught was one of the Roosters. I banded him with the Batman charm. We agreed that we couldn’t call him Batman since he isn’t a “man.” EJ wanted to call him Bat-Chicken, but I preferred Bat-Roo, a shortened form of Bat-Rooster. My guys groaned at the name, but I figure that these are my flock and I get to name them. After we got him banded, I realized that I had forgotten to bring the scissors so EJ could cut off the excess bit of ziptie. I had to hold Bat-Roo while EJ went into the house for the scissors. Bat-Roo was not happy. He occasionally struggled in my arms and I’m sure he was screaming swear words at me. I never knew that roosters could cuss so colorfully.
The second chicken we caught was the third rooster. We put a Captain America charm on him. I told EJ and JJ that his name was Captain Roo. Again they groaned at the name. Captain Roo also screamed swear words at me while we banded him. I’m really glad that I can’t understand the language of chickens.
The third chicken we banded was a hen. She was more docile. I was so rattled by the roosters that I can’t remember what charm we put on her. Now we just have four more hens to band.
In addition to killing spiders and banding ducks and chickens, I have been spending my time making new items to sell in my Etsy store. (There is a link to Teric’s Treasures at the top left of this page.) EJ has been working on making more shelves for our library, he has begun building an enclosed porch, and we have done a few other odd jobs to prepare for winter.