Wednesday, August 25, 2010

The tally so far

We were good.

We resisted naming chickens for a long time.

But the last week and a half, names have been sticking.

Obviously, we have Henry and Abby. (Barred Rock rooster and Black Star Hen, respectively.)

They have been joined by:

Blueberry the light Brahma hen. Guess what her favourite food is, to the point that she will come if you say the word?
Raptor the Brahma rooster. The Brahmas have these almost eagle-like heads and beaks, and this is the fiercest looking of the lot, though he is relatively friendly.
Road Runner the mystery bantam chicken. (I think he/she is an old English game bantam.) He/she runs around like a crazy thing if you get too close, and constantly zips out of our reach.
Lunch and Dinner, the white Wyandottes. (At least I think that's what they are.) These are the stupidest and most "I will eat your toes, durr" chickens, so they have volunteered to be first in line for the freezer.
And tonight they were joined by Splenda, the Barred rock hen. She is smaller than the other BR hens and went from being utterly stand offish to being accepting of being pet and picked up to roost on my forearm. So, she was small and surprisingly sweet.

Blueberry, Lunch, Dinner and Splenda. Can you tell I'm on a diet? :)

Also: One of the white silkies has started to try to crow. It is like listening to a 15 year old boy try to sing an aria. Half painful, half hilarious.

Monday, August 23, 2010

No, I don't think I have a problem at all, why?

So, I'm going to participate in an organized yarn crawl this week. It is the "First Annual Hot August Knits Yarn Crawl", and it involves driving all over hither and yarn and fondling string. I'd heard about it in passing a few weeks ago when I popped into the fibre shop in old town Fort Collins, and so I started off by hitting that shop again (to expensive results) on Saturday.

Some time this week I'm going to drive a couple of hundred miles to Laramie and Cheyenne to go to 4 yarn shops, to get my little "passport" stamped. I'm on the lookout for some lace weight yarn for a shawl pattern I bought years ago and haven't touched yet, as I haven't found anything I've fallen in love with yet. Then, on Saturday, I'll drag Daven over to Greeley, Loveland, and finally up to Estes Park to hit the rest of the shops involved. I have one more in Fort Collins to visit, too, which I hopefully can do tomorrow.

Incidentals will no doubt include sock yarn of various types, because sock yarn doesn't really count towards the stash, right? Right.

By the way, what brought us back to the shop in Old Town was the promise of yaks. I pet the yaks, then went inside to shop, leaving Daven with the yak lady. Well, long story short, we are now getting yaks sometime in the next 6 months. Daven really liked the yaks we met up at the Estes wool fair when we first came out here, and meeting more has solidified his enchantment with them.

We spent a couple of hours discussing our critter plans last night, which resulted in some modifications to our existing ideas. The plans now call for a lot of fibre sources! What we ended up with:

Short term (within 6 months):
2-3 yaks, once we add a little fencing behind one of the outbuildings, and along two bits of fence. Yaks have an amazing undercoat, so they would be useful, as well as compact, non-stinky, easy to care for and playful.
2 dogs. Why am I counting this as fibre producing? I want a Samoyed and a Newfoundland. Black fluff and white fluff! I really am a farm girl, so these will be primarily outdoors dogs. We have a really nice dog run with a big dog house already, we just need to tidy it up a bit. It also has a door into the garage, so we can keep the food in there, away from too many critters. There will be lots of visiting the dogs and playing with them, but I have never had indoor dogs and the house just isn't very "big dog" friendly. Both breeds are very cold hearty.

Medium term (within 1 year or less):
3-6 alpacas, again, once we fix the fencing situation and get them a loafing shed. I was making this really difficult, but after some random research that kept me awake last night (Really? I had fencing based insomnia? My life is weird.), I think we can just modify the existing fence by attaching the mesh-style fencing to the pre-sunk cedar posts. I had thought they needed a 5' fence, but most of the places I could find suggested about a 4', which the existing fence is taller than, anyway. This will save so much time and money that I can't even tell you.
1 guard llama. We had planned on getting a Great Pyrenees as a guard dog, but I've never trained an animal guard dog, nor has Daven, and this way...more fleece!

Long term (maybe, not really a priority):
There may be a couple of sheep of various breeds. (Finn, Icelandic, Jacob)
Also, I want a pony. Maybe "pony" isn't the right word. I want a Shire. I just need to re-learn how to ride so I can get a giant horse!

I love having plans!

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Well, I feel better now.

Because no matter what, I wasn't crazy enough to design this.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Worst. Pirates. Ever.

Henry, the Shoulder chicken.

Abby, the other shoulder chicken. These are the only two that have names, as they are the friendliest of the bunch. My chickens. They please me. :)