2014 (1) allergies (7) apples (1) axe (1) bacon (1) battery bank (3) beer (18) bees (122) berries (3) biltong (1) BioDiesel (1) black soldier flies. (1) blueberries (7) book review (14) bread (2) brewing (37) bush knife (1) canning (10) cats (1) cellar (1) chainsaw (1) cheese (9) chickens (26) cider (3) cider review (11) cleaning products (1) cooking (2) coop (3) creek (1) cyder (13) cyser (12) deck (3) dehydrator (4) diary_toledo (28) diy (48) farm (2) fire (1) firewood (1) flood (2) fodder (6) food (13) food review (5) gardening (14) gluten (6) goats (1) goji (1) greenhouse (2) hive check (5) homestead (1) homesteading (10) honey (7) jam (7) kids (1) kittens (1) land clearing (3) lessons (1) mead (1) MH hive (35) move (2) mower (1) muntons (2) mushrooms (2) paleo (1) pork (1) power (3) prepping (1) projects (3) pumphouse (3) queen (2) re-queen (1) review (1) rootbeer (2) septic (2) sharpening (1) shaving (1) shed (17) SJ hive (24) skills (3) soap (2) starter (2) steven harris (1) storm (1) swarm (7) tip (2) to-do (1) todo (1) toledo (3) top bar hives (2) toyon hive (9) trees (2) vanilla extract (1) washington (3) wasps (1) water (3) wax moths (1) well (1) wilderwolf (1) wine (15) winter 2015 (1) winter 2016 (1) wood (1) worms (2) yogurt (2)

2017/10/09

Time to make room

With the 6 new chickens, the coop is a bit crowded, so we decided to butcher the older birds. The 2 Delewares were butchered yesterday, they were very fat birds, lots of fat around the organs and other places. Makes me wonder if the one that did die if it died due to this. The fat might also be because: 1) its approaching winter so they are putting on stores of fat. And: 2) I switched the whole flock to a chick food (too hard to keep them separate) and the hens put on extra fat due to this chick food diet. Now the flock is back on egg layer ration.

2017/10/07

New beer review

So we tried a bottle of the BoomChugaLug beer today, it's very good, very good.
A lot better, a lot more flavor than the canned kits.
We want to try more recipes now...

2017/09/15

Winter is coming...

This am, when i turned on the hose to water the chickens, slush came out. I've also seen small, fuzzy bear caterpillars crawling around.

I am also experiencing a new rush of some type of flea, not sure where they are  coming from, but they are all over my arms and making me itch like crazy...

I am replacing the covering for the back deck this week before the rains hit.

2017/09/08

New beer batch started

We bought a clone recipe kit for 'Fat Tire' ale called 'Flat tire'. It's from a company back east called BoomChugAlug.com. Price with shipping was $42. We just made it up, we'll be able to bottle it in 2 weeks if the fermentation goes well.

Link to the beer kit: Flat Tire Amber Ale

The stats:
ABV:  5.5%
Color:  11 SRM
IBU:  18
Original Gravity:  1.054
Final Gravity:  1.012
Ready In:  6 Weeks

2017/09/01

Chick update

Well, the 1st chick (puffball) is abut half grown and I found a little egg in the coop yesterday. Looks like she is laying eggs! woohoo!

We lost one of the new chicks, the chick sized bowls of water were empty/knocked over and once jumped up onto the edge of the bucket of water, fell in, and drowned. Q feels bad about this since he was watching the chicks while we were out of town.

2017/08/15

6 new chicks!

The other Maran and an older Americauna have hatched out 6 chicks. 4 Marans and 2 Americanaus. Woohoo!

2017/07/25

Another broody hen

So, Puffball is about 7" tall and growing. Looks like it's a hen.

And now the other maran hen is broody. Woohoo!

2017/07/11

Allergies... wave 2

Allergies kicking back up. L says the Queen Annes Lace is blooming.. ugh..
Meds to the rescue!

2017/06/19

The hive swarmed

Well, L caught the hive swarming so I went out and caught it, 4 times... It was about 15' up an apple tree, so I had to stand on the top of 6' the ladder to get to it. I was trying to put them into a waxed cardboard nuk.
And the swarm went back to the tree.
So I got a bucket, shook the bees into the bucket and put them into the nuk.
And they went back to the tree.
So I tried again, climbing to the very top to try to pull the =m down.
And they went back.
So I got L to hold the ladder while I sawed off the branch they were on and then shook them into a medium hive body/bottom with the sugar feeder on top. That worked. They stayed in the medium.
I'll leave them there for a week then move the hive to the hive compound.

I added a medium last weekend, moved a few frames to the new box, I looked for queen cells, but did not see any in the lower boxes. Guess I should have pulled all the frames out. I should have split it then. oh well. At least I caught them.



2017/06/18

New beer kit provider

Just found these guys beer kits on amazon, gotta try some.
https://www.boomchugalug.com

Another batch of Mangrove Jack's M20 Bavarian Wheat Beer

We like this kit, it does a decent tasting beer for a decent cost. It is a 6 gallon batch so it makes quite a few bottles. I forget how many, I'll add a comment once we bottle in 10 days.

2017/06/15

Broody hen update - 1 chick!

I saw a chick last night! It was hanging out with the broody hen in the coop, I put out some food and water for it, hopefully it survived the night. I’ll check later today.

2017/06/12

Allergy update

As the grass has stooped pollinating and gone to seed (and dried out), my allergies have gone back down to normal.
I've been taking:
  • 2x allegra
  • 1x flonase in the am. flonanse used to make my nose bleed, but it seems I can handle 1 squirt a day now w/o any adverse affects. good.
  • generic pink antihistamines when i get a face full of pollen
L bought me a pair of light weight summer hiking shirts I've been wearing since if I let a grass head with pollen on it hit my arm, my arm gets a red mark where it hit, like a whip lash and it itches!!

At least it's better now. whew..

2017/05/24

Proud

Q (my oldest son) has had a momentous year so far:
  • turned 18
  • has his drivers license
  • graduating from HS
  • should have his 1st job soon
A big congrats to him.

2017/05/22

Assorted notes

Some assorted updates:

  • The broody moran is trying it again. She got so close. We'll see if she can pull it off now. 
  • We are not going to not replace hens as they pass on since right now L cannot eat the eggs. I'll get new feed and see if that helps with L's egg problem.
  • Allergies have started up hard. Cottonwood is fuzzing out.
  • Fleas have risen in population, I setup the flea lights to trap and starve the little suckers.
  • Bees:
    • Ed's hive: added 3rd and 4th box, queen excluder between 3&4. He has: 1 deep, 2 mediums, exclude, 1 medium.
    • Our hive: added 3rd medium, need to deal with the damn ants that are putting eggs under the covers.
  • Looks like all the trees/bushes we bought are budding. The mulberry bush was the latest, we thought it was dead, but it finally started.