Monday, December 27, 2010
I've been having a fun time trying to figure out just the right breed for our needs. So many wonderful types of chickens and the choices are endless....do I get ones that can be trusted to be kind to the kids? Is their relationship to each other most important? Can they handle the extreme temps changes of New England (being 45 mile an hour winds outside today along with blizzard conditions and I'm more then ever convinced I need a winter hearty breed! See the arrival of snow to our corner through the window in the picture?).
Also what type of coop do they need? How large, should it be mobile so I can move them around the yard (helping fertilize and decreasing bug population), or trust that they can truly free range here unconfined (we do have foxes and skunks that we've seen here that would make a quick snack of a non vigilant chicken)? Should their enclosure be permanent? So many decisions!
What's the best feed to supplement the grass and bugs they will be foraging around here (oh, we've got plenty!)? What type of bedding to use that will be totally compostable so they can benefit my garden as well?How many chickens will meet our egg needs per week? We have decided to start with eggs this year and get our feet wet with egg layers and perhaps next year we'll try our hand at broilers to fill our freezer.
So many choices and decisions...and I've been having a great time learning and reading about them. As a teenager, I worked on a farm that had chickens and I'm not completely novice at this, but honestly, it's been a few years since that time was at hand. I am brushing up on the care and feeding so I can provide a caring and humane home for our newest additions.
Not to mention, I just love chickens. I don't know what it is about them, they are just charming to me. Hours of entertainment watching their interactions with each other and other animals, chasing a succulent bug or having a dirt bath. I've heard to them referred to as Farm TV...I wholeheartedly agree!
Wishing you some fresh eggs in your future, ~Peacemom
Thursday, December 16, 2010
I liked the pink rock candy and ice cream trees in this one...and the huge red jelly candy on top of the tree on the right...
I thought perhaps you'd be as enchanted by the gingerbread town as I was, hope it helped put you in a festive mood.
Wishing you candy made into scenes in your holiday, ~Peacemom
This year, since we'd done that two years, and well, there are so many things to see in our beautiful state, we thought we'd try something new. We wracked our brains for days to come up with just the right thing, when Music Man said, "how about Strawbery Banke? Do they do a Christmas thing?"
Strawbery Banke is one of the first establishments in the new world back in the 1600's, when NH was still part of Massachusetts. It is a museum of sorts, and has 36 buildings original to a time period when the country was still new and beyond. Thirty two of the buildings are original to the site and 4 have been moved to the site to save them from demolition in other parts of the town of Portsmouth, which is where all this history lies. Not the least impressive of the buildings relocated to the Banke is the Goodwin Mansion, which used to be on Islington Street and was moved there in 1963 to save it. To think this magnificent building would be torn down is really sad, but so glad that people with the foresight and ambition saved it for future generations. Below are some re-inactors singing Christmas carols in the parlor of the mansion...they have beautiful voices!
The dining room, set for dinner. I loved the hand made sign on the hearth...
I do not know the people sitting down, they were enjoying the carolers as well, but I loved the happiness on their faces.
The night ended with a cup of warm cider, some caroling, and the cat scavenger hunt that the Banke had arranged for the kids. They had to find a black stuffed cat in 7 of the buildings, a real highlight for them, and kept them thoroughly engaged in the night (what a great idea on the Banke's part!). A truly fun time for all of us, we loved the whole experience. I will definitely return when I can wander around in the summer and read all the information and history that is posted all over the museum.
Thank you to my inlaws for providing this experience and memory for all. And, if you've never been to Strawbery Banke or maybe it's been a while, stop and see the wonderful Christmas program they have set up, it's a very heartwarming and informative night!
Wishing for you a glimpse at Christmas' past, ~Peacemom
Saturday, December 11, 2010
We got the little cherubs all bundled up and set out with cash in pocket to the wonderful place we found our tree last year. We were all set to traipse around on their wonderful farm and find THE tree. As we pulled up, there was a sign that stated in very small letters: "closed for 2010 season". Oh. No. The children were upset, and frankly so was I. I really wanted a tree from that particular farm as we're moving more and more into the "everything as local as possible" mentality. For us, that included our tree. Well, shut. We turned Rudolph the Red Van around and decided to drive towards a neighboring town that we thought would have a cut your own and be open. On the way there, we drove by a place we stopped at a couple of years ago. There, at the end of the driveway, we saw this little sign:
Then they carried it to the car and strapped it on.
A fun time was had by all. Now, the tree adorns our living room with it's lovely smell and graceful way it holds our ornaments. Thank you, Little Tree for being an intricate part of our holiday celebration, we appreciate your sacrifice dearly.
Wishing you a bit of Christmas cheer of your own today, ~Peacemom
Friday, December 3, 2010
Yep, Maestro could barely come up for air with his. Those boys do love their sweets!
Wishing you some sweetie treaties of your own, ~Peacemom