Sunday, February 15, 2015

Frigid Weather, Summer Planning, Good Hens and Busy Fingers

The cold, windy, inhospitable weather we continue to have has been good for staying warm and cozy indoors and doing some planning.  So Papa Pea and I spent a few hours this weekend going over our spring/summer To Do List.  Even though it's double-spaced, it's two typewritten pages long.  I've often voiced my opinion that "normal" people would pick one of the items on our list and proclaim that's what they were going to get done of a summer season.  If all went well.

We prioritized the items into an A List and a B List, then labeled the ones in the A List that we could start "early" . . . as in before the snow is completely gone and nice weather settles in.  To say we aren't going to be lacking in things to keep us busy this summer is an understatement.


I have been bitten by the sock knitting bug and think I may currently be addicted.  I'm wanting to knit several pairs for myself, something I haven't done in the past.  Above is a picture of the one I'm currently working on.  It's progressed some since the photo was taken.  I'm now ready to turn the heel and finish off the rest of the foot.  I made the whole top in k2, p2 ribbing, something that takes waaay longer to do, but I think this particular yarn lent itself to that particular design.


We have 12 (Oops.  My error here.  There are a total of 12 birds in our chicken house, but only 9 laying hens.  That makes our egg production sound even better, no?) hens in our little chicken house and they have layed fantastically all winter long.  On many days we get 7 eggs . . . that is if we're quick enough to collect them before they succumb to the bitter, freezing temps.  Most of the producing girls are from the batch of chicks we started this past spring.  We try to get by with only purchasing and starting chicks every other year with the couple/few our own broody hens will hatch out this summer thrown in for good measure.  

The really exciting news on the poultry scene is that we've ordered goslings to arrive this spring.  We've sorely missed having geese but couldn't tolerate the trio of breeding stock we had before when Father Goose turned rather vicious.  The last attack sealed their ticket to freezer camp.  The new breed we're getting are Pilgrims which are touted as being very docile and non-aggressive.  Let's hope!

We haven't made a trip to the big city for needed supplies since before Thanksgiving.  Putting it off is getting to be a (worn out, not funny) joke around here so we are aiming to take a day sometime this coming week to do so.  Hmmm, let's see now.  Do we want to go on a sunny day when the temp isn't forecast to rise above 3 degrees or should we choose a day when it might get to the mid-teens but with a warning of snow?  Eeny, meeny, miny, moe . . .

It has been fairly slow and low-key around here lately.  We're taking it a little bit easy, staying warm and bundling up really, really good when going outside.  Papa Pea has a much faster metabolism than I and warms up quickly once he starts moving although it's nasty outside.  Me?  Even on our 1/2 mile hike out to get the mail and back, I never get much heat going.  Maybe I have too many clothes on and my circulation is cut off.  Tomorrow I'll run out there in just my long underwear and jogging shoes.  Oh, yeah, and wouldn't that be a sight!  

16 comments:

Sparkless said...

Goodness you guys in the East are sure getting hammered with winter while us Westerners are basking in an early spring. I'd send some your way if I could.

Mark said...

We're starting to get few more eggs now that the days are getting a little longer. We were getting 4 or 5 out of 13 layers during the darkest days and now we're back around 7 to 9 on regular basis even in our cold temperatures. Go Girls!

I'm one of those guys who has to watch getting overdressed even in the bitter cold if I'm going to be working. I, too,warm up quickly and find myself working up a sweat pretty quick. Then as soon as I slow down or stop I'm cold and wet.

Don't forget a hat and gloves on your jog to the mailbox tomorrow!

Tombstone Livestock said...

I like you are doing your lists. Weather here is currently 10 to 15 degrees above normal, hope this is not going to continue on into summer. California really needs more rain.

tpals said...

You don't post chicken pictures often. Just sayin. :)

I wish I had the gumption to make a big to-do list.

Sue said...

Oh dear--is it time already to make the summer to-do's???
I have to say that the winter is going so fast. Part of me is glad (I miss the sun!), but the other half of me can't believe I'm already running out of "indoor" time.
Stay warm up there----I really don't think you can "over" layer. I think you're just too skinny and need to fortify with a blueberry buckle or something else warm and yummy---and invite some PEOPLE to enjoy it with you
(hint hint hint hint hint hint)

Kristina said...

I have knitting socks on my so-called bucket list. I've never tried it yet. Maybe, if we get through this strike, and get a garden planted, I'll plan on attempting it next winter. I'm jealous of your egg supply. My hens must be on strike too.

Mama Pea said...

Sparkless - Yes, those unlucky folks on the East Coast are getting pummeled. We're more mid-country and are just getting the cold and blow with no snow. But that's okay. Less time spent shoveling and plowing!

Mama Pea said...

Mark - Gosh, your chickens have done great this cold winter season. Yay, Girls!

Fortunate for me, I will not have to run out to the mail box today (properly clothed or not) because there's no mail delivery. Whew.

Mama Pea said...

Tombstone Livestock - Already 10-15 degrees ABOVE normal? Oh, no, here comes another way too hot summer season for you . . . :o(

Mama Pea said...

tpals - Hunh. Sounds as if I'd better start carrying my camera with me out to the chicken yard.

Making the big To Do List isn't the hard part. Getting things done on it sometimes seems impossible!

Mama Pea said...

Sue - Yeah, I'm too skinny. (And too rich!) Yup. Uh-huh. For sure. That's my problem. NOT.

P.S. I just 5 minutes ago took a pan of Gingerbread out of the oven. Would that do for you instead of Blueberry Buckle??

Mama Pea said...

Kristina - I know you've been so short on eggs nearly all winter. Bummer, since you can do sooo much with them.

I'm going to hold you to learning how to knit next winter. You'll love it!

Susan said...

I really like knitting socks with the ribbed pattern all the way down to the foot - it keeps them up! It's interesting that you have to choose between awful and awfuler weather in order to do chores. I keep trying to put off going outside until I run out of time and run around like a nut - at least that keeps me warmer, barely. You and I must have matching metabolisms...

Mama Pea said...

Susan - I'm just ready to do the toe on this first sock of the pair. I slipped them on last night and really, really like the way they look. The only challenge with doing the ribbing all the way down is how to keep yourself from going bonkers with that k2, p2 for. all. those. inches!

Sometimes I don't think my blood circulates to my hands and feet. They are always cold. It's embarrassing to shake hands with someone because the other person reacts like they've just grabbed an ice cube.

Sandy said...

Mama Pea,

Now that's a nice egg stash my dear......I'm coming to your house to get me some eggs, lol......

I love geese, hopefully your new Pilgrim's are docile.....otherwise I know where they will end up......freezer camp!!!

Mama Pea, funny thing I don't get over heated myself when walking outside with all the winter gear on. I wonder if it has to deal with going through the change??

Mama Pea said...

Sandy - I'm glad we're in the same (cold!) boat with our metabolisms! (Misery loves company?) You may just be going through the change, m'dear, but I can't use that as my excuse as that whole phase is twenty-seven years behind me! Unless, of course, my hormones went whacky then and have stayed that way!