Past experience and a couple of light snow falls, coupled with predictions of a long cold snowy, el Nino, driven winter has added some impetus to the chores. All the tools are put away. Hoses coiled and stored in a heated basement - just in case of winter emergencies. Fuel stocked up. Chains checked and ready for mounting on the skid steer. The gardens cleared and tilled. Missing planting some Garlic.
I went to a local Art Knapps, a plant store, a week ago to buy some garlic and a few cold hardy seeds and walked into this:
A whole two months before Christmas. I just about freaked! This was a plant store! Full of artificial Christmas trees and Xmas doodads. When I asked for garlic I was told they only had daffodils. and they were in the back. Well I know a Dutch fellow who had to subsist on them during the horrors of WW11, but this is 2011. Horrors! Ah well, maybe some cloves from store bought garlic might work. Or order online. But by the time they get here the ground will be frozen. Kinda like my brain when I walked into this place thinking I could peruse the seed packets for some over winter and green house planting needs.
Memo to self. Get the planting supplies before fall!
We were very relieved to see our chucks start laying. With 14 less Roosters ( banished to the bachelor quarters - awaiting freezer weight ) the Hens are a whole lot calmer. Not having to sit with their rear ends against the wall! We've added a small 60 watt incandescent on a timer to give them 15 hours of light a day and that seems to help a whole lot. Mind you, roosters crowing at 3 a.m. could take some getting used to! 12 laying hens and one old bitty will more than keep us in fresh eggs.
Looking forward to a wild game meat cutting course this weekend. I don't hunt myself but all the local butchers have gone out of business so I've been lending a hand- and some sharp knives with the family hunters.
We've got six pigs coming up to butchering time, and they are going to be the honored guests at another course on pig butchering at the end of the month. And I have a large calf to process in the next week or so. Luckily I have access to a full featured meat cooler and processing place an hours drive away. Local beef prices have gone way up with cows going for over a thousand bucks. Great for the local farmers, not so great for our doggies. It will cut into their allowance for this year. Perhaps time for us to raise a couple of cows next year.
Hope your winter prep is all complete, the snow hats and mittens at hand, and you have a great week.