Spring is coming, I swear.

Well, faithful readers, it’s 35 degrees on the Farmlet tonight. And yet, spring is totally coming. Evidence?

  • The chickens have given up their winter strike: in just a few weeks we’ve gone from no eggs to an occasional egg, to a solid handful each day. We’ve got 4 adults in the rotation, and this past fall’s pullets (the sisters of our giant rooster crop) are starting up as we speak, which will give us ten good laying hens by the time spring is really rolling. This morning, E found a tiny pullet egg next to the feed pans. I’m sure poor Ellie was SUPER surprised when that thing came out of her butt during breakfast.
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  • The first tender new leaves have appeared on the elderberry bushes, while the radishes I planted in the hoop house during last week’s warm spell are just beginning to poke up out of the ground.
  • The pigs are EXTRA frisky- unclear whether they’re playing or trying to mate with one another (a little of both, I think)- but it’s pretty fun to watch them frolic.
  • The table is COVERED in seed catalogs: porn for the gardener.

I’m starting to get so excited- I can’t even tell you how beautiful it is here in the springtime. And of course, there’ll be much more news to share as everything bursts into life- and WAY prettier pictures than a patch of bare ground with an egg on it 🙂

Stay tuned.

Until next time,

~Fae

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They’ve figured out where we live.

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Wow, eleven adolescent roosters is a LOT of roosters- any day now they’re just going to knock the door down and drag us out to the food can.

One more week of the great chicken surplus. The 5 pound dog will be REALLY happy to not be harassed in the yard anymore.

So will I.

Until next time,

~Fae

 

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A wave of chickens

…and when I said we were awash in chickens, this is what that looks like: it’s hard to walk across the yard without stepping on the little buggers!

A bit of a drive-by, until the semester is really rolling smoothly. But still! I posted on a work day!

Until next time,

~Fae

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How many women does it take to pluck a chicken?

Spoiler alert- this post contains photos and video of a chicken being plucked. Although there is absolutely no blood and gore, the chicken is, of course, no longer living. It is not gruesome in any way, but it you’d rather not see a dead chicken, this post is not for you.

I am so excited to share this with you, invisible readers, that I literally cleaned up from today’s chicken processing, made a cup of tea, and sat down here at the computer. Blog content doesn’t GET any fresher than that! Well, and the cold breath of spring semester is breathing down the back of my neck- I wanted to be sure to get this in the can before my free time was again just a memory.

Today, we processed some chickens.

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For luck in the New Year (Black-eyed Peas and Collards)

Although many of the dishes I’ve shared on this blog start with “take one whole live pig“, we’re going to jump off into the new year with a VEGETARIAN (and now that I think about it, it’s actually vegan) recipe for a black-eyed pea salad.

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Simple (and cheap) ingredients, for such a tasty dish!

Not to worry, I haven’t jumped over to the dark side- I’m still an unrepentant carnivore- but I came up with this particular combination during my summer work, where I live communally and cook for a community of women, starting with 6 of us and growing to 600 each August. As you might imagine, there’s a wide variety of dietary needs in the group: folks who don’t eat gluten, vegetarians, vegans, women fighting cancer, and of course fellow carnivores. This recipe pleased everyone who ate it, no matter what their personal dietary needs. Of course, the one thing everyone has in common is a love of delicious food, and meat or no, this savory combination of collards and black-eyed peas fits that bill.

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Winter break, with animals

Well, it’s been quite some while since I had both a chunk of free time AND the energy to put into a blog post. What with the new adjuncting job, I’ve been SUPER crazy busy- enough energy to keep the animals and people fed and healthy, but that’s about it.

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This year’s hoop house, and a bumper crop of arugula, collards, turnips, and kale. We are awash in greens.

However. It is FINALLY winter break- for both me and E- and we have been doing all the winter break things: watching a lot of netflix, cleaning, visiting, making a TON of delicious food, and getting caught up on a few months of farmlet chores. I can’t even say how happy it makes me to know that the garden is finally weeded and undercover for the cold weather that is late, but coming. It’s totally the little things. And so, here’s what’s been happening on the farmlet:

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Pigs on Christmas morning

72 degrees in the Farmlet- Tofu and Tempeh are enjoying turnip trimmings from the garden.

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