It’s been rainy all week. I think we’ve had more rain thus far in October than we had all summer! The first three days of this week were warm with temperatures in the 70s, but I think . Each day the leaves on the trees are noticeably more colorful. I think we are now nearing the peak autumn color.
Despite the rain, I was able to get several tasks done this week.
Monday morning I scooped the wild bird seed from their bags into kitty litter buckets to keep them safe from rodents. Timmy helped me.
We had ordered a few things from Amazon, trying to get ready for winter. It’s always a bit of a chore to order anything in the winter because the delivery guys won’t drive up our long steep driveway to the house. Instead, they place packages in the Magic Box–a large wooden box we have at the bottom of our driveway for packages. I call it the “Magic Box” because packages suddenly appear in it! 🙂
One of the items that arrived on Monday was a string of Christmas lights. Our coop is not wired for electricity so I hang Christmas lights in the coop, which makes it quite festive. We have them plugged into an extension cord running out through a garage window and in through the coop window. The garage and coop are only a few feet from each other. Half of my old Christmas lights were no longer working and the chickens kept knocking parts of them down, which didn’t help matters. So I bought rope lights which I thought would be less fragile and more easy to secure on the nails I hang them on. The lights are a brighter, harsher light than the previous ones and not as cozy, but I wanted a brighter light to encourage the chickens to lay eggs for as long as possible, even though right now we have an over-abundance of eggs. Another few weeks and they’ll stop laying until Spring.
In our Amazon order, I also got an outdoor thermometer. I fastened it to our North Post weather station. Later, I had EJ stand at our bedroom window to direct me in adjusting it so we could see the red line indicating the temperature from inside the house.
There wasn’t a good place on the North Post for the rain gauge so after consulting with EJ, I fastened the rain gauge to one of the fence posts so that we could see it from the house.
JJ’s girlfriend needs to rehome her chickens, so we agreed to take two of them that are hens of the same breed we have. JJ and his girlfriend just have to find time in their busy schedules to bring them to us. I’ve been reading about how to introduce new chickens to a flock. I’ve read that there can be a bit of a fuss as they fight to establish a new pecking order. An article suggested keeping the old and new chickens separated for about a week to help them adjust to each other so I’m going to put them in the front part of our coop where we had kept the ducks, and which we now use for storage for the chickens’ food, straw, etc.
Only one side of the coop’s double doors has an inside latch and I want to be able to keep the new chickens contained so on Monday I hammered a large staple on each side of the door, and then twisted a sturdy wire on one staple and bent the other end so I can latch it onto the other door and hold them closed. I didn’t even know these large staples existed until we moved to our new home. Now they are my “best friend”–I use them to attach fencing to posts and to make latches for doors and gates.
While I was hammering the staple in, I apparently irritated a large wolf spider. People always say that spiders are “more scared of you than you are of them” but this spider wasn’t scared of me. He (or she?) rushed toward my hand. I leaped away with a “Ahhhhhh!” of fear, barely escaping its attack. I found a long stick and brushed the wolf spider off the door. It jumped into the mud and I finished my tasks while trying to watch for the spider.
Tuesday morning EJ tripped on a wooden box at work and fell hard on his knee. His company sent him to the hospital to have it looked at. Fortunately, he didn’t break anything. The doctor x-rayed EJ’s knee and said he “just” bruised a bone and that it would be really painful for a few days. EJ came home after his exam to ice his knee. Ouch. EJ has been struggling with some health issues. I’m a bit concerned for him. I don’t know if his symptoms are due to stress, his medication, or some other problem. I hope to accompany him to his doctor on his next checkup later this month.
EJ had wanted to put fencing around the apple trees this week to protect them from the deer. The plan was to get one tree fenced each night after work. Instead, it looks as if that will be our weekend project.
I worked a bit in the garage yesterday. A month or two ago, EJ brought home some old four-drawer file cabinets that his work was discarding. He is planning to put tools and such in them. I moved the cabinets against the wall with the others. I also began painting another long thin board to make another snow measuring stick for the front yard.
The temperature has been in the 70s for the last few days. While the weather was warm I opened the windows to let the fresh air in before I had to close them for the winter. I finally took the screens off today and washed all the windows because a cold front came through last night and it’s been much colder, with high temperatures not reaching 50 degrees. There was a blustery wind that made it feel much colder. I wore a heavier jacket today, which was barely adequate–any colder and I’ll switch to my winter coat. I also wore a winter hat; unless I wear a hat, my ears ache painfully in cold weather. I can well believe that winter is quickly approaching. It has snowed in the UP and in western states. We are running out of time to get things done.
Hannah Joy is a real character. She doesn’t have much patience. When she wants me to do something, she wants it NOW. I thought you’d enjoy this video I took of Hannah yesterday when she was trying to get my attention. She growls and whines, gets up in my face, and nudges aside my laptop. My laptop has a touch screen so in nudging it aside, she often touches the screen and messes up what I’m doing. Sometimes she deliberately wraps my laptop cord around her nose and pulls it out. Hannah is impossible to ignore. She’s funny.