Announcing the Winner…

Thank you all for participating in my note card giveaway. The winner is Melissa at vuchickens.  Yay, Melissa!!!

If you haven’t met Melissa you should stop by her blog and see the cute lamb she just made out of her own hand spun wool… And she has to have the most beautiful chicken coop ever that her dad built her this last summer…all on her wonderfully delightful blog.

Please remember my Etsy Shop when you need a blank note card for any occasion. They make nice affordable gifts, as well. 🙂

 

Welsummer Sis ©2013 Karin NaylorWelsummer Sis Note Card

 

 

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Befuddled

Aren’t these spider lilies beautiful?

spider liliesLike  their relation the  Surprise Lilies, they just come up out of the ground when you least expect them. What a blessing! Thought I would start this post on a positive note… 🙂

Especially on a day like this when I am overwhelmed and befuddled. I can’t even speak here of all the situations, but two of them happen to be the garden and the chickens and that is what this blog is all about.

October is right around the corner and October last year was when I got my first chickens. 14 Marans chicks and 4 Welsummer hens, 1 cuckoo Marans hen and 1 Barred Rock.

Today I have from the chicks 1 rooster and 4 hens, 1 of the  4 Welsummers, and the 1 cuckoo Marans.  I also have 2 Ameraucanas. I sure have lost a lot of chickens… 😦

I know that the 2 Ameraucanas are laying 5 to 6 eggs a week and occasionally I get a brown egg from the Welsummer and one dark brown one from one of the Marans.  This morning I penned them all up in what  Sleepinghorse terms the naughty room. And the reason for this is to find out if any of them are making nests like Emma did. I want to know who is laying and who is not, and how many eggs I should be getting a day.

Emma is the other dilemma!

I thought it best to move her and her 14 eggs and then I began to think about the fact that the embryos in those eggs are probably pretty well formed by now and wondered if it would be detrimental to move them at this stage. They should be beginning to hatch in about a week. I looked again on line and found many who had moved the eggs and the mama hen abandoned them. I would just hate this. So we decided to take the chance and let them hatch out and then move them. They are right under our bedroom window, so we should be able to easily hear any ruckus that goes on.

While I was writing this, I heard a strange noise outside and I ran to see as I am totally on alert now until the chicks hatch… It was Emma coming out for a quick bite to eat. I ran to the kitchen and got some oats and leftover tuna…

Emma 3

She gobbled this up and then fluffed her feathers…

Emma 4

And while she was stretching and sunning I took a peek at her eggs…

marans eggs

Still 14…

Then there is my pathetic fall garden. Every leaf of every plant that I planted from seed has been eaten up, and I don’t even know what the culprit is. So no fall garden this year, or do I go out and buy some plants?…Like I said, I am befuddled.

I guess I’ll just take one thing at a time…

spider

Mr. Knightly Has a Friend and Giveaway Update…

The weather is just unbelievable here for August… Last night it thundered and rained, and this morning I grabbed my little camera and went out to practice taking pictures of all the droplets of water on the veggies…

pumpkin 1

pumpkin2

And then I saw this…

pumpkin3

Pumpkin leaves trailing like some incredible cascading leaf sculpture. How cool is that?

I didn’t mean to get off on pumpkins and water droplets…what I want to say is that while I was walking and taking photos I heard Mr. Knightly crowing, and then another rooster somewhere in the distance would crow back…back and forth they were talking to each other, never even having seen each other. I got the feeling that they were greatly enjoying this communication…back and forth.

Mr. Knightly now has a friend…a long distance friend… 🙂

And this reminded me of my fellow blogging friends…never having seen each other for the most part…we post and “like” and comment and carry on a kind of long distant communication that we enjoy. Maybe it’s not so unnatural after all…

Thank you all for all your encouragement, advice, and sympathy…Hugs to all of you…long distant hugs that is…if there is such a thing… 🙂

One day more and on Thursday the 15th, I will announce the winner. I wanted to show you the painting in the barn wood frame…

giveaway copy

Until Thursday then… tell your friends, fellow bloggers, and all the chicken lovers you know. 🙂

Comment to enter on this post here…Welsummer Sis Giveaway

Now, I’m off to start some fall seeds a-growing…

Welsummer Sis ~ Giveaway

Here she is…a portrait of the Welsummer sister I promised to paint as a giveaway to celebrate one year of blogging here on Rosemary, Lavender and Thyme…

sis 2 copy

This is a 6″ x 6″ oil on gesso panel, and I’m going to include a barn wood frame. 🙂

To enter the giveaway…

1. Follow my blog, if you haven’t already… 🙂

2. Comment… you have to comment to enter. That’s it!

There will be a random drawing on Wednesday, August 14th, and I will notify the winner with a reply comment. Please tell your friends, fellow bloggers and all the chicken lovers you know…:)

About My Chickens…

Things have settled down a bit here and the hens are happy and laying and we still have Mr. Knightly who is behaving himself. Caught a couple of pics of Mr. Knightly and Emma on the bridge…still hanging out together…

Mr. K and Emma

Mr. K and Emma2

Once a week I clean the coops and put out more pine shavings and some of the wonderful herbs that are growing so prolifically around here…

herbs

First on the chicks coop door in the burlap bag …

herbs2

And then on the nesting boxes in the old Tack Room coop…

herbs3

Love this head shot of one of the Welsummer sisters…

hen w

She is the inspiration for my new oil painting Giveaway to celebrate my first year of this blog, so stay-tuned…

Can’t leave without sharing a pic of the Ameraucana chicks…

chicks

There are 12 of them and I think at least half are roosters. They are about 11 weeks old and some are starting to get their muffs. Roosters have a wider comb with 3 rows whereas the pullets will have just one row. Correct me if I am wrong. I’ve also noticed the roos getting pretty blue feathers.

The Coming Out…and the Great Mistake…

I couldn’t wait the 30 day quarantine …I couldn’t even wait until the full 2 weeks were up. I felt so sorry for the hens being cooped up, so in the evening, I let the “wild hens” out, and they did just fine…at first…

coming out

They were looking so much better… a little plumper…a little more content…quite a bit cleaner…

Emma was the first one to greet them…

coming out2

Then Mr. Knightly…

coming out3

So far, so good…of course Mr. Knightly started doing his rooster thing, and I left them to get used to each other…

Later that evening at dusk, I went down to close up the coops. All the “wild hens” were in their coop, roosting up high, except for the white one. I ran around a bit trying to get her to go in, but she wouldn’t. I shut the coop door and let her fend for herself.

In the morning she was sitting outside the coop door waiting to get in to eat. I let them all out for the day and they seemed to get on just fine.

Here’s one of the new hens hanging out by the porch in the heat…

new hen

The second night all were in the coop, but the white hen and her friend, one of the scruffy speckled black and white hens. They were happily roosting on top of the barn roof and I closed the coop and left them.

My husband reset the dog trap knowing that we now have these “wild hens”  roosting all over the place unprotected.

The third night only one hen was in the coop, probably the one pictured above. The other hen that looks very much like this one was in the Tack Room coop with all the Marans and Wellsummers. She seems to have assimilated very well.

So there were 4 hens out this night when I shut the coop door. A little frustrated with this whole thing, I muttered under by breath that I really didn’t care if they were there the next morning, or not. Aren’t I awful?

One of my daughters came home late that night and said she saw two hens trapped in the dog trap. I just figured that at least they would be safe inside the trap from predators, so I left them in there for the night.

At 1 o’clock in the morning, my other daughter heard a dog barking and growling down by the coops. I slept right through it, and  she didn’t wake us up.

In the morning the dog trap had been pushed over and the hens were clucking away inside. They probably had a rough night, but they were not hurt. The other 2 hens that spent the night out were  sitting by the coop door waiting for me to open it so they could get food.

This was it for me! These 4 hens were looking wilder and dirtier and they were not assimilating!

This is not what I want for a flock of hens…I don’t care if they lay or not!  I left the hens in the trap, gave them some food and water throughout the day and when my husband got home, we caught the other two “wild hens” and put them in the trap, and he transported them over to our neighbor’s house who was happy to have them and keeps them inside a large coop and run all day.

Yes…my conclusion is that this was a bad mistake…a GREAT mistake and I won’t do it again.

On the positive side…I did get 2  nice hens out of the deal that lay pretty light green eggs.

new hen 2

Now Mr. Knightly is another story.  We tried to catch him too and give him to the neighbor.  I’m tired of having to look behind my back all the time and carry a stick or shovel around with me to ward him off in case he attacks me. My husband ran around with a net trying to catch him, and ended up breaking the net, and Mr. K ended up sopping wet  in the creek trying to get away. We laughed at him…he deserved the dunking and  we gave up. But he has been pretty good ever since. And the hens just love him so…

Mr. K2

I guess he can stay until he misbehaves…

Mr. K