1.5.2018

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We’re still here!

In the end, it was just a big, noisy snowstorm, but it was a little disconcerting to look out the window when we were in the thick of it. It was a mess of swirling whiteness. The wind was howling so loudly, I couldn’t hear the snowblower going up and down the driveway as J attempted to get a jump on the cleanup. It got worse as it started to get dark, because then we really couldn’t see anything and were left just listening to the creaks and groans as the house and surrounding trees took a beating. The power flickered once in the late afternoon, but never went out completely. I am so grateful for that. The girls did lots of painting at the dinner table, and after bedtime, I sat down and sorted my seeds by the fire. Because what else do you do during a snowstorm but dream of warmer days to come?

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It’s cold out there today: a flat 0*F right now with a “feels like” of -18*. Tomorrow will be worse with a high of -2*, but we’ll be back up into the 20s and 30s next week. I can’t really tell how much snow we got because it was blowing around in great clouds, but there is certainly plenty of it.

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The flock hung out in the shed today. We didn’t even open the door to their run, and instead opened the main door of their coop so they could wander around inside. It means some cleanup for us next week, but it shouldn’t be too bad to scoop once it’s frozen. I went out to visit them and they came running when I shook the scratch bucket, happy to see the hand that feeds. I shared on Instagram the other day that we’ve welcomed seven new ladies into our little flock, bringing the grand total to sixteen chickens: fourteen layers and two roosters. A friend of ours found that she was too busy to give them the attention she felt they deserved, and we definitely have the space – we actually had too much space for the number of birds we had, and they were cold at night – so they came to live with us on New Year’s Eve Eve. We’ve now got four new Barred Rocks, with Biggie making five, and three new Araucaunas (light blue-green eggs!) to go with our three Golden Comets, one Australorp, and four Salmon Faverolles. It’s definitely a mixed flock. I’d be excited for some “barnyard mutt” baby chicks this spring, but my bigger girls don’t take any crap from the roosters, despite the fellas’ advances. I think we’ll still add half a dozen chicks this year to refresh the laying population, and J has been brainstorming a design for a basement brooder box. It’s almost time to start building!

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