"If the world were merely seductive, that would be easy. If it were merely challenging, that would be no problem. But I arise in the morning torn between a desire to improve the world and a desire to enjoy the world. This makes it hard to plan the day." — E.B. White

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Now n Then...

Now n then I like to imagine what life was like round these parts 200+ years ago when our town was incorporated... Take this shot... Can you believe I just took it last week while driving home from dropping off kids at school? Someone is clearing out and ?fixing up? a very old abandoned house... Looks like their well drilling truck is almost as old as the house!

And just to further the confusion... This canon sits just a bit further down the same road! What's up with my neighborhood? I dunno, but I LOVE it!

Today I'm inside with poor Jack who was attacked by the nasty stomach bug last night. Oh well, tho it's sunny out it's also COLD so I'll putz at my Easter decor and maybe post some pics of that soon. This month seems to have it backwards - coming in like a lamb and going out like a lion. Stay snug friends! 

I know~ mirror n garland need help! baby steps...

Monday, March 19, 2012

Winner, winner (no chickens for dinner)!

My chickens and peach tree are enjoying this early spring!

Congratulations to Terri in Idaho!!!
She WON a copy The Chicken Encyclopedia by Gail Damerow.
 THANK YOU ALL SO MUCH for all your comments n entries. 
for more chances to win their super fun goodie basket!
It's National Poultry Day!

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Born Lucky

Sarah wears a pin that says "Born Lucky" because her Nanny is Irish. Jack loves his shamrock bow tie...  We are all blessed. We always celebrate St Patrick's Day casually with our special "Irish" friend, Chris. This year she brought her outrageously adorable 2 yo grandson, William. What FUN we had!

Dinner is usually simple; corned beef, cabbage with green veggies n cheese for starters. It always seems to be a busy time of year and we scramble to get the house ready.  The kids are becoming a big help these days (tho not enough to balance out the messes they make). This year we celebrated last night as I knew today was going to be extra busy with horse and farm activities. I also used Pinterest for a fun lunch w/jokes and the kids copied this great Leprechaun trap from  A Holiday Haven all by themselves. I couldn't believe it when they told me he'd escaped but they found gold chocolate coins he'd left! 

Years back we tried to make it a bigger gathering of our Irish family n friends but it never quite worked out. Chris lives just down the road and always makes time for us. That's why we love her ~ she's a real "come as you are, stay as long as you can" farm friend. She has Belgian draft horses, chickens, cows and goats, even turkey n geese. We actually met her through the Maryland Draft Horse Club when Sarah was just a baby. SHE gave us Bert n Wilma! We all LOVE Chris!
Miss Chris gives the BEST HUGS!

William arrived w/a favorite new mask...

so Jack put on his Wildthing mask (that I made a couple years ago)

I was excited to use the junky highchair that I'd bought to hold potted flowers in the garden

When I arrived home from looking at a horse this afternoon I found my kids like this!
Can you believe a water slide n swimsuits on March 17th in northern Maryland?!

The kids kept themselves entertained while The Farmer and I did overdue yard work... He mowed, I pruned and we used the chainsaw to cut down the (too many) clumps of ornamental grasses... I know one little kitty who's going to be sad we cut down her secret napping spot.

I have a frame on my sideboard where I can slide favorite Pinterest quotes etc according to the season... For St. Paddy's I printed out my favorite Irish blessing from the talented Courtney at Sweet Cs Designs.com. May it apply to you too!

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Chicken Mysteries, answers & GIVEAWAY

Here on our crazy farm we've had more than our share of oddness from critters.
But our latest mystery has certainly been colorful!
We've had our own Easter Egg hunts lately.
I know. It's too early you say.

And yes, hens do leave eggs in odd places, but we were finding blue eggs now n then. 
The Araucana breed or crosses known as Easter Eggers are known to lay colored eggs...

 But we don't have any of those.
or do we...?

We bought our newest chicks (labeled as Plymouth Barred Rocks) off craigslist.
The Farmer actually got them for me on my birthday in July.

Maybe we were sold a misidentified bird!?

I've only had some that look like this, tho I knew there was some color variation.

Well the timing of our mystery was perfect in one way.
I was selected by Storey Publishing to review Gail Damerow's newest book
It's actually called  The Chicken Encyclopedia.

As soon as it came I eagerly opened it and looked up Araucanas.
And immediately learned A LOT!

Araucanas and Ameraucanas (the crosses) have several different distinguishing traits...
One of which is a smaller 'pea comb!"

Sing along w/Sesame Street -One of these things is not like the other.
This one has a "pea comb"

And on another note... The Chicken Encyclopedia has all sorts of neat facts!
I liked the chicken blinders picture and definition that reads " a plastic device that resembles a pair of tiny sunglasses, sometimes used to prevent or control cannibalism by blocking vision so a chicken can't see directly ahead to aim a peck."  Wouldn't a chicken wearing those be too funny (and perfect for our funny farm)?!
Hen on left would've appreciated it if her roost mate had worn blinkers!

I guess I should be happy we find any eggs before the cats n dogs eat 'em all!

(Do you remember how tiny "Smores" was when we got her?
She's sure got a buddha belly, as opposed to a baby belly, now!)

So, how bout you??? 
Have you bought or hatched out chicks that weren't at all what you expected?!?
Please leave me a comment telling me about what you were expecting and what you got, OR what chickens you WISH you could get, and you'll be entered to win your very own copy of this great book!

One entry will be randomly drawn. Per Storey’s request, this giveaway is open to U.S. residents only. Please include an email link if not attached to your profile and check back for winner TBA on National Poultry Day ~ March 19.
Here’s the list of other participating blogs and their tour dates from Storey's site:
Please visit them all for more fun facts and chances to win Gail's great book!

3/2 For the Love of Chickens
3/3 Vintage Garden Gal
3/4 The Garden Roof Coop
3/5 Common Weeder
3/6 Chickens in the Road
3/7 Garden Rant
3/8 Fresh Eggs Daily
3/9 My Pet Chicken Blog
3/10 Coop Thoughts
3/11 BoHo Farm and Home
3/12 Happy Chickens Lay Healthy Eggs
3/13 A Charlotte Garden
3/14 Farm Fresh Fun
3/15 The HenCam
3/16 Life on a Southern Farm
3/17 ADozenGirlz, the Chicken Chick™
3/18 North Coast Gardening

Friday, March 9, 2012

Jeepers PEEPERS!!!

I know that a lot of ya'll get fired up over Fireflies, but as I just explained to Sarah... 
I L<3VE Peepers!
Nothing says brighter days are ahead more than peepers. 
Goodbye long, hard winter (a fav Little House book tho)

Helloooooooo SPRING!!!!!

As I wrapped up chores last night I could hear their beautiful music.
 The Farmer stepped out onto the porch to enjoy it with me.

Indeed, it brings such happy feelings that I once named a newborn foal "Peepers" after nights sleeping in the barn, serenaded by their sound, as I waited for her arrival.

Picture and text are from  here where you
 can learn much more.
Spring Peepers are small frogs that grow less than an inch and a half long. They can be tan or gray or dark brown, but they all have a dark "X" on their backs. Spring Peepers also have large toe pads for gripping plants when they climb.
Spring Peepers are rarely seen, but are often heard in early Spring. They breedfrom March to June, and in early March you can hear male Spring Peepers calling for mates. Many people think they are crickets, but you only hear crickets in late Summer and early Fall.

Wishing you all sunshine and beautiful music today!
Spring's a comin'!

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Horses and heartache

I wish someone could tell me why horses and heartache so often go together...
Horses bring so much joy.
Losing them brings too much pain.
In my thirty plus years with horses I've dealt with a lot...
You'd think it'd get easier...
Somehow it seems the opposite.

On Saturday we lost a treasure~ "Balion." 

Bali sure was a "classy" guy!

He taught us all so much.

xOxOThanks soooo MUCH for sharing him 
with me and my family Ashley n Diane!!!!!!xOxO

He made us all smile and appreciate our time in the saddle.
EVERYONE who met him became his fan.

Bali had looks, brains and talent
(and more than a few endearing quirks)
wrapped up in one huge heart.
He will be immensely missed.

 "Some trails are happy ones, 
Others are blue. 
It's the way you ride the trail that counts, 
Here's a happy one for you. 

Happy trails to you, 
Until we meet again. 
Happy trails to you, 
Keep smilin' until then. 

Who cares about the clouds when we're together? 
Just sing a song, and bring the sunny weather. 

Happy trails to you, 
Til we meet again." 

We love you Bali!