Sunday, March 1, 2015

Peep, Peep, Peep

The Garden Spot has been very quiet this week after the excitement of our Afternoon Tea last Saturday. Thank you so much for all you sweet comments.

I spent most of the week working on the dollhouses. The first part of the week was lovely, warm, with a bit of snow melting. Wednesday the atmosphere turned ugly. We had gone shopping for the kitchen remodel, looking for tile for the back splash and trying to select our granite for the counter tops. Of course the granite slabs are displayed outside and by the time we got to the shop, the wind had come up with snow only minutes away. It was so cold and I had worn only a light jacket. So our look was quick, quick enough for me to say, "Nope, not that one, or that one, and certainly not that one." While I do have the back splash tile selected, the granite will take more time.

While I was in town on Thursday, the Head Gardener left a message in the cell phone: the chicks were in and he had gone to pick them up.

He ordered 8, but two did not come in--the blue laced red wynandottes. We already have a pair from last year's chicks, one hen and one rooster. Pertelote has steadily been laying one egg a day, as has one of the older hens. Two eggs a day give us a good supply. I had been quite nervous about the rooster whom I named Chanticleer, inspired by Chaucer's Canterbury Tales (English major that I am). Roosters tend to have rather bad attitudes and can be very aggressive not only towards the hens, but small children, even grown-ups. We both have childhood memories of what happened to the rooster when he attacked small children. Nor does our HOA association in line with the town ordaninace on poultry keeping allow roosters. Yet, since we are zoned agricultural we are getting way with keeping the rooster. The HG tends to get attached to the animals here and becomes rather protective of them. As long as Chanticleer behaves, he will avoid the soup pot.

I set up a back board, dropped a bit of lace shower curtain on it and added Easter grass for some color so that I could photograph the chicks. They don't have names yet. The Head Gardener will eventually name them as he has all of the others. Only a week old now, they are beginning to grow their wing feathers. They are eating well, peeping, pooping, poking around in the wood shavings, and taking long naps as babies do.

They are kept in this Rubber Maid tub in the office with screen top and a heat lamp.

A bird dog by nature, Boone has a curiosity, but we dare not leave him unattended with the little ones. We have let the mature hens out of the chicken pen when we are working in the garden so that we can keep a watchful eye on them. The old dog Max left them alone, but this new pup will have a few lessons to learn.

A thermometer helps to let the HG know how warm the brooder gets. The little girls (they are supposed to all girls, but Chanticleer is proof that sometimes boys are shipped) have good appetites and will grow quickly.

I am excited to see the mature  Black Copper Morans. They will lay very dark brown eggs that some describe as chocolate. While I don't think the eggs will actually be that dark, they will be brown brown. The hens will be black. 

We tend to choose our hens by the color of egg that they lay rather than by production and by what the adult hen will look like, too.  I just really enjoy seeing a bowl of multicolored eggs.

This is on my favorite egg pictures. Gathering them fresh from the nest, Elinore put them in a bird's nest that she had picked up off the ground from under one of the pine tress and added a delicate little weed flower, presenting with pride her little creation to me. I will keep you posted on the chicks' progress.

Charles Osgood on CBS Sunday Morning told us today that we have 19 days until Spring. Oh can we wait? Denver has surpassed a long-time snow record for February by .4 of an inch. We have not had that much here in this part of the state, but enough is enough.  So as I close, I present you with the little carnations from last week's tea. Carnations last forever, don't they?

I changed my header this morning, using the first header I ever created for my blog. It is one of my favorite spring photos of the Garden Spot, taken the first spring we here. We have been here now officially for 6 years. I believe we spent our first night here February 28, 2009. We wonder sometimes if we made the right move, especially at our age to 5 acres where there is so much work to do. Then we realize the alternative: a big house with stairs to nearly every part of the house, one of the big reasons why we moved to a ranch style home after I broke my ankle and couldn't get around the house. We think, too, that in retirement we would be really bored in a house on a small lot. So here we are thankful for the good health, the time, and the means to garden, raise chickens, chase horses, and, listen to the sounds of nature. 

And a big thank you to everyone of you who visits the Garden Spot whether you leave a kind comment or not, I appreciate your time and for those do leave comments, I call my friends and thank you. 

Have a wonderful week. Keep up the Vigil for Spring.  Oh and be sure to visit Lavender Cottage for Mosaic Monday.


  1. Beautiful flowers and so cute little chicks...
    The egg picture is really pretty. It would make a lovely Easter card!
    March is a spring month... ♫
    Have a great week ahead, Ann!

  2. The carnations are fabulous - I received some two weeks before christmas and they lasted until almost the middle of February - not even any murky water - it was wonderful. The chicks are sweet - what a lot of work though. I like the eggs in the nest.

  3. Oh! Thank you for showing us the chicks, Ann! They are so cute! I hope you are staying warm. It isn't easy, is it?

  4. I noticed your new banner right's beautiful! Well done, my friend. And the baby chicks are very precious! Enjoy your week! Hugs, Diane

  5. The chicks are adorable. Reminds me of reading my Great Aunt's diary about my Great Grandmother raising them and getting new and improved incubators frequently. We had about 6 inches of snow yesterday. The chicks remind me spring and easter WILL come!

  6. Some lovely photos this week Ann. Chicks are sweet little things aren't they - it won't be long before they are up and running and enjoying life with you on the farm. I still miss not having hens about the place but they area where we live just has too many foxes who are out to get them. Have a good week.

  7. I would love to have a place with horses and chickens, I am sure it is a lot of work though! The chicks are so cute. And Boone is a pretty dog too, watching your chicks..I love the pretty flowers, lovely carnations.. Have a happy day and week ahead!

  8. The little chicks are so cute and Boone watching so curious, love these pictures.
    Wish you a good week!

  9. What cute little chicks - you have your work cut out for you. Hope the weather is improving your way.

  10. I love baby chicks and get to see them occasionally at the farm where I buy our eggs. Usually I hear them before asking to look.
    Their eggs are always brown and I was thinking of asking this morning when I picked up a couple of dozen if they'd consider some Easter coloured ones. :-) Guess I'll have to die some shells.
    Thanks for linking to Mosaic Monday Ann.

  11. Love your header photo, and the carnations make a lovely bouquet with the baby's breath - isn't it great when a bouquet lasts a nice long while? Baby chicks are SO cute, I always manage to see some at our Co-op store each spring... Thanks for sharing their cuteness with us! :)

  12. Seeing the photos of your chicks has gotten me so excited for ours to get here. I love your idea of using a tub for the brooder.

  13. Spring will be delayed here, as we still have lots of snow about. But this week they predict above freezing temps, finally! Enjoy those little chicks. They are just the thing for gardeners these days, aren't they?