Thursday, June 18, 2009

Just Call Me Battle Axe

It's been a busy week. I lost another chicken to the foxes and have been patrolling the yard with the axe in hand in the evenings. People driving by probably think I'm crazy. I guess Tom figures the two nights he sat outside with his new shot gun was enough. This Fall I'll take the hunting class that is offered every year for new hunters in town and learn how to handle a gun, but for right now, I'll just patrol with my axe and butcher the chickens as fast as I can. Looks like the chicken skid will be used for the next batch of chicks. At least it's built.

Got some good news today when I took Ed for bowling with Special Olympics. We parents are going to be allowed to organize a Park Falls Chapter for Special Olympics. We will plan an organizational meeting around the end of July. The Lions Club in Park Falls is going to sponsor us. How wonderful! I already know that we can have a fund raising table at the farmers market once a month, but I'll confirm that with Diane Barkstrom, our market manager, when I see her (hopefully on Saturday). Thanks to Tony and Vicky (Nino's parents) for the gorgeous tomato plants and Red Brandywine seeds!

The weather has gone suddenly from very cool at night and during the day to hot and sultry. Of course, the wide temperature swings are causing the greens in the garden beds to bolt. I plan on bringing mesclun mix, baby cos, radishes, spinach, and scallions to the market. The peas are blooming so I'll probably have peas by next week. I'll be preparing all day tomorrow for market: wash the aprons, tablecloth, and table; harvest and clean the produce and put it in the refrigerator to keep cool; make a smaller stand for the hanging scale that is not as heavy and cumbersome to move; put batteries in the radio and have Lara select the CD's she wants to play; and so on. Once I get my plastic tub with all the necessities together, preparing for market each week actually goes quickly. I am looking forward to seeing everyone again. Lara is excited to go, too. Let's hope the seeds planted in the field now take off.

We did make it to the nursery last Saturday. I bought some gorgeous herbs, and Tom bought a lilac bush to replace one of the American Cranberry bushes that he didn't like. I took the one he didn't want and put it in my little herb garden by the propane tank. Looks like I'll need to build a fence around that garden since the string fence I put up around it did nothing to keep the chickens out of it and the garden -- including the new herbs I just added -- have been chewed down to the ground. Huge sigh . . . .

I've been working on my presentation for the Northwest Wisconsin Sustainable Living Fair on July 25-26 in Ladysmith, Wisconsin. I will be giving my seed saving presentation on Sunday, the 26th, at 2:00 p.m. I am excited about being asked to speak and am working very hard on my prsentation. I have a couple of handouts that I want to get printed, so I'll need to get those to the new printer in Park Falls. From what I understand, they are a young couple, and that is the type of business I like to support.

Speaking of the field, I'm going to have to get out there and hoe the weeds already. The wire is up on the new fence posts, and even though the fence line is only halfway straight on the road side, it's a sight better than it was. I hope that this Fall when things slow down a bit that I'll be able to work on the fence some more. I can at least tighten up the wire now for sure. The grass around the sections needs to be cut again already.

Wild life report: We had two raccoons in the yard last night that kept setting off the motion light. The foxes are still slinking around. It's going to be a great year for grouse hunters because the grouse have been drumming all over the place for a couple of weeks now. Ed and I saw a doe and her tiny baby fawn cross the road in front of us today as we drove to town. We also saw four sand hill cranes (two each in two different fields).

If the rain keeps coming the way it thankfully has been, this should be a good year for berries.

Time to lock up the chicken coop, so I'll talk to you later. Have a great evening.

One last note: I came across a quote the other day that I'd like to share. It is from Enoch's Book of Admonition for His Children in the Book of Enoch, Chapter XCII, v. 2: "Let not your spirit be troubled on account of the times; for the Holy and Great One has appointed days for all things." Sweet.

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