Monday, December 10, 2012

Wasting No Time

Things are already busy here at Hen Hollow Homestead!  We are finishing up the unpacking process and are mostly set up in the house.  Even though we have similar square footage here, the rooms and layouts are different, which makes for some interesting re-organization.  Where will Nathaniel and I keep our shoes?  Right now the answer is ‘all over the floor’!  Ha!  I’m figuring it out, and it is so fun to set up a new place!

As for outside activities, those are in full swing as well.  The roosters continue to rise EARLY and wake us up with their crowing.  They are funny little characters with their own little personalities, and they seem to have adopted Natalie as their personal keeper.  They will follow her around, and like to ‘talk’ to her when they see her.  We have demoted them from backyard pets to barnyard pets, and they aren’t too happy about it.  They stand at the back gate and call for Natalie to please let them in.  It really is a funny sight!

Nathaniel is wasting no time and a dozen laying chicks are on order, to be delivered this week.  He spent the weekend preparing for them, and we have everything we need for their arrival.  He converted an old watering trough to be the brooder box, and made a frame to go over it so we can attach the heat/warming lamp.  The tiny chicks will be newborns (literally!) when they are shipped to us, and we will have to keep them warm until they feather.  Not only will I be feeding, educating and caring for Natalie and Levi, but I will also be adding ‘the girls’ to my responsibilities.  It’s a little pressure knowing that twelve tiny newborn chicks are depending on me for their very lives.  It will be a fun new experience for us, and we are hoping it goes well so we can continue to add more chicks to our homestead in hopes of selling farm fresh eggs to friends and neighbors.  Is that YOU?!

Chick feed, heat lamps, brooder bedding, and a mason jar feeder!

Nathaniel's handiwork - brooder box ready!

Some cute kiddos in the brooder box!

We continue to tidy up around the homestead, making the place our very own.  We have moved lots of big rocks, filled a dumpster, and winterized the outdoor plumbing at the house and the barn for the colder temperatures.  We are also in the process of picking up hundreds of black walnuts that have fallen from our backyard walnut tree, as well as the thousands of pecans from the front yard trees.  Nathaniel is working hard to crack and shell all of the pecans so we can put them up for the year to come.  We are also hoping to have some extras to sell.  Are you interested?

It is so wonderful to live across the road from my parents and their farm.  My dad is a wealth of knowledge…he seems to know just about everything!  We are eager to glean from his database of stored info in that brain of his, and store up lots of fun facts and how-to’s of our own!  He has come to the rescue many times already, and has been super helpful as we navigate the new territory of farm living.  Even though I grew up on a farm and know some things, it is a whole new world when you are responsible for the workings!  My parents should have made me help out more when I was young…so spoiled was I!

My mom and I are enjoying taking turns cooking.  Some days they come to our home for dinner, while other days we make the short trek to their place for grub.  It is nice to share the cooking and clean-up responsibilities a couple of nights per week.  The plan is to teach these children of mine to wash dishes.  Wish me luck!!

So far, one week in, we are LOVING life on our homestead.  We have lots of work ahead of us as we strive to achieve our goals, but we count it pure joy to be here.  God is so good!

Check back soon for more updates on the baby chicks, as well as other news from Hen Hollow Homestead!

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