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So Long Terrible T

April 22nd, 2019

She was called Sweet T and Terrible T, and was a gentle giant, but a little neurotic too. She wouldn’t hesitate to kill a coyote, raccoon, skunk, or fox, but was gentle with the ducklings (her favorites). We loved her independent spirit (though not all the time). On our way home from the emergency vet Friday night, Mr Chiots said “I can just see your mom, in her bathrobe, greeting T and feeding her milk bones from her pocket.” My mom loved this dog, as did everyone that met her. She will leave a giant Anatolian shaped hole in our hearts and on our farm. We are thankful she went out in her prime while still working and doing what she loved and we didn’t have to watch her fade to a shadow of herself. She lived a good, long life. It’s so difficult to lose pets, but they are such wonderful companions while they are with us.









They weren’t 100% what happened, but the best guess is hemangiosarcoma. While tragic for her to go so quickly, in the end we realized it’s a blessing that she was playing one and gone the next. She would not have tolerated treatment or a long illness. So long Tara…

Chick, Chick, Chickens

March 26th, 2019

Spring is always a time of hope, for me, and for the chickens. I think they love this weather more than I do. They can once again do what chickens love to do, scratch around in the leaf little finding bugs and other tasty treats.



They sit in the sun, spread out their wings, and soak it up. They dust bathe in the dry spots. They spend as much time outside as they can (just like I do).

Hello Tom

March 22nd, 2019

Last fall, one of our turkey hens hatched out a few poults. I didn’t want any new turkeys, but she hid the nest well until it was too late for me to pull her off. Luckily, she only sat on 4 eggs, of which every single one hatched. All the poults survived and grew and grew over the fall and winter. Turkeys take a while to mature, it’s difficult to tell if they’re hens or toms until they’re 6 months old. A month ago I noticed one was all of a sudden much larger than the others and had started gobbling. Low and behold, we now have a very handsome tom dancing around the barnyard trying to attract the attention of the turkey hens.



I don’t need more toms, so I’ll most likely find a home for him. He’s a nice bird, no aggression at all (if you’re not familiar with turkeys, some toms can be quite aggressive). He’s also a very handsome fellow! Hopefully I can find a nice home for him where we can live out his days doing what turkeys do.

What’s going on in your neck of the woods this week?

Go Sweets

February 6th, 2019

Sweets, our little feral garage cat of many years, is a great cat (we also call her Sneets after a niece called her that once). She’s a smart little cat, spending her nights out hunting rodents. Yesterday, I went up to the garage to give her some food and found an ermine she had killed.

A few weeks ago, one of you was asking about her. She’s still around and doing quite well. If you haven’t been reading here long, this little black cat has an amazing story, you can read about her series of unfortunate events here.

If you’ve never heard of an ermine, you’re not alone. They’re a weasel, a small weasel, but very fierce. They can get into a chicken coop and kill every bird (including turkeys and geese) in one night. You can imagine how happy I was to see this one dead. Good farm cats are really worth their weight in gold, if this ermine had gotten into our chicken coop we would have lost hundreds of dollars in chickens, not to mention all the lost eggs in future months. Even though Sweets is getting older (she’s 9 now) she’s still a mighty hunter, especially considering she’s tiny only weighs a few pounds herself.

Babies, Babies, Everywhere

October 24th, 2018

Each summer I try to only let one variety of fowl hatch out little ones. This year, I had a turkey mama that hid a nest in the woods until it was too late to break her off. Luckily she wasn’t sitting on very many eggs. She hatched out 6 turkey cutlets, there are four that have survived (two were nabbed by a raccoon one night).

Earlier in the summer we let two different muscovies sit on a few eggs each. We ended up with eight ducklings in two different clutches, they’re almost adults now and the same size as the adult ducks in the flock. Since the turkeys and ducks more than doubled the amount of birds we had in the coop, it seems like there are birds everywhere.

Add to these the 25 chicks that are now miniature chickens and we have quick the flock living in the one of the coops. All these birds are very entertaining and provide fertilizer for the garden, eggs for our table, and entertainment for us.

What new life are you enjoying this summer/fall?

Seeds and Sundries
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Shop through these links and I get a few cents each time. It's not much, but it allows me to buy a new cookbook or new gardening book every couple months. I appreciate your support!

About

This is a daily journal of my efforts to cultivate a more simple life, through local eating, gardening and so many other things. We used to live in a small suburban neighborhood Ohio but moved to 153 acres in Liberty, Maine in 2012.

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