July Rolls By Quick!

Well, holy moly! Where did July go? I’ll tell ya where. It went to court dates, and gardening, and chicken coop building. That’s where. I guess lets start at the beginning of the month.

So the first week in July. We decided to buy a few fireworks, because the kiddo’s wanted those popper things. I got to the tent, and people were buying hundreds of dollars of fireworks, and I felt a little out of place with my little $15 budget. I got eight boxes of the poppers, so each child could have two, I got two packages of those things that you light and they whirl around on the ground and make like a small pyrimid of light, and then they pop and sparkle. And then I got two of the small Purple Rain. We Always have to have a purple rain. This year it was just the small ones, and since everything was buy one get one… we got two. We sat out on the back slab after dark and shot off everything we had, while watching the neighbors pop some high in the sky fireworks. There were so many we almost thought our little town had a show at the park, but it was just like three different families just doing their thing. We hollered out “Thank you”, when it was all said and done and they hollered back, “De Nada”!:-)

Then we were building the chicken coop. Remember that blog right there, where I said the chickens were going in their new home? Well, they didn’t. Then I hoped for July 4th. It being Independence Day and all. Then I was hoping it would be the next weekend, and the next. Nope, and nope. We’ve had the drawback of other critters being able to get into the half of the shed where we’re building their space. So we’re adding extra chicken wire, and boards to block foxes, and marmots, and feral cats, and skunks from getting to the chickens! Could you imagine if I went to feed them in the morning and found a skunk locked in with dead chickens, because it could have gotten through an unfinished area of the wall? Ugghh! I don’t wanna have to deskunk my coop!

So it’s all still in progress, and the chickens will be out in the next day or two at the very very most! We have to go to the store and get three more 2x4s to complete the outside part of the coop anyway. But I have got to say I am amazed at dh and my own abilities to build something this great! We both sat outside hammering in those U shaped fencing nails for tacking on the chicken wire and other wire fencing we have, giggling our butts off because we dubbed the coop Chicken City and then we both started singing Starships We Built This City… “We built chicken city on roooock and roll!” :-D  https://youtu.be/K1b8AhIsSYQ

Then we had court. Bankruptcy. I have been super depressed and totally emo over it all. Sitting there in court bawling to the Trustee and showing her pictures of Cassie three and a half years ago at 65 pounds, and telling her about our move here to save her life. Lordy, I must have looked a bit whooped by the end of the morning. But it’s all done now, and it’s all in the courts hands. I bawled a couple of months ago too, filling out the paperwork, and basically what the paperwork told us is that we are a family of six, living on less than what one person in CO should be living on. Crazy that! The first thing to value on the paperwork was kitchen appliances, and the first appliance was “stove”. Oh, we don’t even have a freakin stove! We have a single hot plate, and a toaster oven. Trustee raises her eyebrow to that. So we showed her pictures. She believed us then. So really the only thing we have of value at all is our guns, and our bikes. Cassie will get to keep her bike, because it’s medically necessary for her to build more muscle. The rest of us might lose ours though. I’m really hoping we don’t.  When the lawyers office and the trustee were going through our paperwork they were expecting Mooooore stuff! We don’t have gizmos and gadgets like we used to though. Heck, I didn’t even have a cell phone til late last year, when I caught up with the rest of the world. But they can take that if they want it. I’m really not all that impressed.😛

And that’s about all for the month of July. Chickens, gardens, and court. I’ll do some picture posts over the next week or so. I have some awesome things to share!

TTYL:-)

Update!

So the chickens are getting their new home today! Out of the bin/big ol trough and into a proper coop!!! Ok ok, it might not be so proper. Two people building a structure and a fenced in area, and neither of us have much fencing skills, and I call myself the lucky one because I built a dog house in high school. Dh has put in a wall before, so he can manage the framing, and little nest boxes for them. And Austin is on the look out for some great branches for the chickens to roost on! So many things.

In kitten news… the shelter doesn’t do intake on the forth of july, so we have to wait til next week to take them in. We’re thinking of leaving Mammy with them too, so hopefully they can find her a great home also. Even though she came from outdoors I do not think she is an outdoor cat. I think she was an indoor cat that got turned out when her owners moved.😦 So, we shall see.  I think I’ll write down that her name is Sunshine on the paperwork they give us to fill out. Much better than being called Mammy, and the cats with cuter names seem to go the fastest.

In gardening news… well, we had too many squash in one bed, so we made another bed and transplanted a bunch that only had their first two leaves on them. They are all doing wonderfully now!!! Our original squash in the three sisters bed are going crazy!!! We picked the first three zucchini that were on the plant, so now the one plant has put out like eight more!!! We are going to be swimming in zucchini, and tomatoes!

When we got the second squash bed in, I just kept hauling dirt while dh transplanted the zucchini plants, and I got a nice row of cucumbers in by the back fence! Three hills of Straight Eights. Four hills of Marketmore, and two hills of Pickling cucumbers! Should be a nice variety. I also have some bush cucumbers that I want to try once we get another bed in. Those won’t require the fence to grow on.

And when I talk of putting a garden bed in, just for reference, they are usually 3 foot by 16 foot beds. We have seven of them so far, and that’s not counting the potato patch which is probably three times that size.

Anyway, I’ve gotta get off of here because there is laundry to flip, and dishes to do, before I get back to gardening and knitting. I’m starting my weekend baby hat knitting for Halloween and Christmas. A Halloween hat every Friday, and a Christmas hat every Sunday. From now til Halloween that’s about 20+ hats, and til Christmas that will get me a good 30 hats, if I do just over one a week! Join me and bless someone with a newborn on the holidays!

TTYL:-)

The critters!

Since everyones been asking here come some kitten pictures!!! Now youngest dd took these and kittens are apparently very fast so please excuse the blur.😛

Mammy cat!  Shes going to be getting fixed finally when payday hits in July! Then she’ll have to stay indoors while she heals for a few days (a week or so) and then she back outside being the wonderful patrol cat for the neighborhood! She is on top of the cat carrier in this pic because she does not want to feed the kittens any more milk. They’re six weeks and now eating kitten kibble and I’ve tried to explain to her the whole breast is best argument but shes not having it. LOL

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Here’s the keeper from this bunch. Oreo2.0.  Poor Emily was so upset a few months back when we had to have her favorite outdoor cat Oreo put to sleep. Something happened to his tail (dog attack most likely) and the vet said the blood flow to his back legs was restricted and he would just get worse. In the four days we had him indoors to recuperate he went from walking to dragging himself to not using the litter box anymore. So we told Emily if there were any black and white cats in this litter she could keep it. Oreo died and three weeks later… Oreo2.0! Yes he’s a bit of a runt and his ears are bigger than his head. If we didn’t have to name him Oreo I’d be naming him after a Gremlin. LOL

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Then there’s Sunny. Turning into the biggest and baddest of the whole lot of kittens!

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Tia and Tony. They are both grey and white like Mammy and the only way to tell them apart is one has a little bit bigger of a white spot on their back. I think they’re both girls but have not confirmed that yet.

Tia.

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Tony.

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And last but not least Smokey!  This kitty is totally grey but his face and legs have a little bit of stripes! Too cute!

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And… chickens! I cannot even tell you how much I Love my Chickens!!! They are so super awesome and in the next seven days or so we Will have a coop built for them!!! The only one we’ve named so far is that one with the white feathers on his wings. It’s name is Whitey! Yeah, real original. But that one is also the one that comes running up to greet me first in the mornings and it would sit with me all day if I let it! LOL  All of the other ones just kind of blend in but I am getting to know each of their personalities. Two of them are like the ones that herd everyone else around. I’m thinking we might have two roosters???  I have no clue how to tell except to let them keep on growing and if they don’t crow and they lay eggs then they’re a hen. Derpy me.😀

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Now lets see if I can get my camera out in the yard later this week, and have gardening updates too!

TTYL:-)

Off the needles today…

Yep you got it!  A knitting post! Finally!

So a week or so ago Anna linked to an owl hat pattern, and it was supposed to be free, but when I clicked the link it was like $4 for the pattern and I think it was only up on the persons website for a limited time, like two years or so, or something. But the pattern intrigued me, so I started digging, and I didn’t have to dig long before I found a pattern on the Way Back Machine. Here it is! So she basically has more rows before you start the owls, and didn’t put buttons for eyes and such. So I tinkered with it. Since the owl pattern is 11 stitches, and the hat brim is a three pattern repeat, I thought I’d start out with the easiest three stitch repeat that went into 11 also. 66 stitches. Here’s the results…

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It looks great to me, except its more of a preteen size hat than an adult. I made that one up there in white yarn, and now I’m starting a second adult size hat in a brown yarn. Vannas Choice Toffee color to be exact. I’m going to do the brim in 78 stitches, and then decrease one stitch at the back of the hat, and then I’ll have 77 stitches for 7 owls on that hat!

Next up, the long awaited Mermaid Tail pics!!! No I haven’t finished it yet, because it’s like 104 degrees here in the daytime, and I can’t sit with a lap blanket on my legs knitting on it in this heat! Blah! But here’s what I have so far! The fish tale part of it…

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And then the blanket part of it. The colors in the blanket part are a lighter purple, and mint green. I only need to do about three more repeats of the blanket, and then the decreases in the round for the bottom. Here’s a link to the pattern on Ravelry, but it’ll cost you $4.  It’s well worth the $$$, so just go buy it if you like it! You will Not be disappointed!

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Here’s my pitiful little bit of charity knitting for the past two weeks or so. The colors a little off because of the lamp in my office area. The top right hat is more blue and white, and not so very grey looking. The three yellow hats are double stranded, because the yarn was very very thin, but I used up two more balls of yarn out of stash! Yaayyy! And then a colorful hat that I don’t really like the way it striped, but eh, someone will like it I’m sure. And green booties. I have a pile of about 20 sets of booties to add that to though, so it won’t be sad and lonely for long.

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And the scrap baby yarn scarf is finished!  Wooohooo, for a whole pretzel bucket of odds and ends used up!  Might put this on the Etsy shop as a One Of a Kind never to be repeated item!

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And this is today’s fun! I threaded up the Inkle loom again! Beautiful two and a half inch belt coming up!!! I added the hair ties to the pegs on the loom though, because the last belt I was working on PuppyCat kept coming by and kept popping some of the warp off, and it was troublesome getting it warped back on twice!  PuppyCat hasn’t been around as long as the other four, and he doesn’t realize yet the yarn is off limits! Tough rulez for catz!😀

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And that’s about all the projects I have going right now.  There has been the random pair of fingerless mitts, and plain ol hats that I’m stacking up for when the cold weather hits. I was thinking of making a few of these rainbow hats to add to my shop also, just because they are so cheery to make, and life hasn’t been the greatest for the past six to eight months, and I could use a little bit of cheery colors in my life. :-P  What do you think? Would people buy them up?

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Stay tuned for garden and critter updates. I tell you what… chickens grow up fast! LOL

TTYL:-)

Recovered Footstool… again

Y’all probably remember eight or so years ago when I recovered an old footstool I’ve had for about 20 years. It was a purple flowery fabric, and I changed it to a red and oranges striped fabric. Well, the cats and my feet have been using it for the past eight years or so, and it was beyond unsightly!!!

So last time we went shopping I hit the $2-3 a yard section at Wal-Mart and used some of my savings catcher $$$ to get a yard of good thick fabric to cover it yet again. And today, that’s just what I worked on.

Tah-dahhhhh!

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I know, I know, you want knitting pictures. Well our ‘lectrics are out right now, because we’re having a storm, so I’m typing this up on my phone. More pictures soon though.:-)

TTYL:-)

Gardeny stuff!

Here’s what we have so far. Off to the left where the bricks are, is where flowers are going around the cement slab. We sprinkled seeds in, and we’re going to be adding zinnias and marigolds that we’re growing from seed to that little bed. And then we’re going to have a little walk off the slab area and then rose bushes around the other area of the slab. The first bed at the bottom of the picture is the three sisters garden with corn squash and beans. See too many squash plants in that bed, so we’re going to make another bed and transfer some of them. Only three corn plants are up so far also. The next bed that has the rock dust on it is now the pepper bed, and the next three beds after that are the tomato beds.  Dh packed that first tomato bed full, but the next two are more normally spaced. On the way right of the picture where the two white buckets are is our potato patch. Finally got the rest of that in two or three days ago. Yaaayyy, for no more potato starts sitting around in buckets! See our green Gorilla Cart too! That thing is a lifesaver! And it can be adapted to pull behind on our bicycles!

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The potato patch! So, we planted that first square of it and called it a day, and then two weeks later came back and planted another portion, and then a few days ago I finally got out there and just dug in and got every last seed potato out of our house, and into the ground! Now they’ll come up a bit at a time, and we won’t have to kill ourselves doing the whole patch at one time. And yes, the five apple trees we have down the back fence line…

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are getting full of apples too! We nicked a lot of them off to help establish the trees better though, so we have about eight to ten apples on each tree, and about three dozen on the crab apple tree. Just enough for everyone to sample some. Hopefully next year they’ll set just as well as they did this year!

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Here’s a better view of our three tomato beds. People were asking about our hoops. Basically it’s just 18 inch pieces of small rebar pounded into the ground, and then pvc pipe flexed over the bed onto the rebar. 6 Mil plastic from the hardware store, stapled to two 2x4s on either side of the bed to help hold the plastic. We’re only using the cover while it’s still cold at night, but soon we can just leave them off. We use the masonry blocks so we can roll the plastic half way up, so newly planted items don’t die off in the afternoon sun, and also to help hold the 2×4’s down at night. We get a lot of winds out here on the plains but so far it’s all working wonderfully!

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Some of our lettuce and kale, and the Easter buckets (we got them for 10cents each two weeks after Easter, and drilled drainage holes in them for extra planters) have sweet onions in them. The black bags have red onions in them. We still have like 250 more onions to plant also, so I’m going to need to get busy making two more beds! That’s my goal this weekend.

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More pepper plants yet to be put in. We have all kinds of hot spicy peppers and then about a tray and a half of regular ones too. And some marigolds that we rescued from the store also. Can’t beat it when they have 25 and 50 cent plants that are just about dead. We get them home, and make them live.😀

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And this came up in the compost/soil we had delivered! Lambs-quarters, ftw! So I’m getting a bit of salad greens and lambs-quarters to eat every day now!

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And the birdhouse gourds!!! These are the last two survivors of the first six we put in the ground. I bought more seeds from the store though, and we popped eight more seeds in the other two mounds, and so far five of them have popped up!  Wooohooo, for more big ol gourd plants! They’re going to sprawl up our back fence!

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And that’s about all in the garden for now! I’m going to have to get a lot more pictures when I’m out there, because we now have about eight big ol tomatoes that are starting to turn red, and about 50 or so cherry tomatoes on one of the Sweet 100 plants also! We ninja-ed one early yesterday, and it was soooooo yummy, even though it wasn’t blazing red yet! Still 100 times better than the ones at the grocery store!:-)

TTYL:-)

Chickens!!!!

Yep, I know I’m blog slackin again, But… on Memorial Day we went to our local feed store, looking for diatomaceous earth for our bean plants, and guess what?  They had chickens! They said they weren’t getting any til August or so last time we were in, but whammo there they were. Dh and me looked at each other, and the store was closing in 15 min, and we were all like, “What will we need?” A bin to keep them in, wood shavings, feed, water bucket, food dish, heat lamp. Zoom zoom zoom, around the store we ran with four different employees and management helping us pick out stuff. We asked for eight chicks. The manager tried talking us into a dozen. He had a hand in throwing them into the shoe/work boot box, and amazingly we ended up with nine! LOL He really wanted rid of them!

Talking to the one store employee she was saying they were going to have them all the time now thru September, but when we went back to the store for a bigger bag of feed this past weekend they were all gone. Manger guy said, “Thank goodness!”, so I doubt they’ll be getting any more in any time soon. Dh and me both looked at each other, and were sooooo freaking glad we didn’t wait a week or so on the decision to get them!

They are supposedly all Rhode Island Reds, and supposedly great layers, so we shall see.

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Today when I was cleaning up their food and water and picking them up to keep them used to getting handled, I thought one was a little tore up and bloody, but nope. They’re all getting their regular feathers around their neck area!  They all already have a good crop of tail feathers coming in too! And one of them had pasty butt, and I got em all cleaned up, and no problems at all yet. :knock on wood:

I still have no clue how much to feed them, because some places say feed them as much as they want, and others say not to.  Some places say you can add greens to their diet, like plant scraps from the garden, and weeds, and other places say not to. So I have no clue, but I feed all nine of them about two to three cups of baby chicken feed in the contraption a day, and usually by the next morning most of it’s gone. I want them to get used to just being fed a bit of grain/scraps in the morning, and then they can forage as much as they want the rest of the day when they’re old enough to be outdoors.

Sooo, yaaaayyy chickens!

In other stuff around here…  All the potatoes are finally in the potato patch! The tomatoes and peppers are going gangbusters. Our bean plants took a bit of a hit from crickets, but they’re bouncing back. Zucchini and squash are coming up too close, so we’re going to make a sixth bed, and thin them out. I need to make two more beds for onions this weekend, and then all of those will be in. OH, and I finally found a rhubarb plant! I’m going to get about three or four more when we have the money. Dh has never had rhubarb. I’ve only had rhubarb pie twice, and now I’ve heard of strawberry rhubarb pie I think I am going to fall in Luuuuurvvv with that!😀

Also on Memorial Day weekend we did this….

Now you see it…

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Now you don’t…

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Bye bye big ol dead tree! Only thing I was sad about was two Yellow Belly Flycatcher birds had built a nest in it, so they were sad and displaced for a few days. I was going to be super sad if the nest had eggs, but it didn’t! Whew!  So I had dh trim the tree part that the nest was in, and I took it over to the fence halfway between our house and the neighbors tree where the birds took off to, and I stuck the chunk of tree and the nest in another tree about four feet off the ground and I told them where I put it when they came flapping overhead (yes I talk to the birds :-P), and the next day we watched as the two birds came and went, taking parts of this now messed up nest to a different tree, over our house and across the street to yet another tree. Now when I sit in my front yard I can watch them across the street, and luckily we didn’t put them out too very much. Only took them about four days to rebuild from scratch!

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So, I guess that’s a pretty good start to what we’ve been up to lately. I should do a garden blog really quick too, and then a quick knitting blog with end of our school year stuff too. OMG I cannot wait to be done with evals and such this year, and just pack everything away! We had such a rough and crazy start to our school year, and I’m just glad we’re getting further and further away from all the crap of 2015!!!! And time marches on!

TTYL:-)

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