Saturday, February 15, 2014

Snow days February 2014

This week we had a major (for us) snow storm!  In a little over 24 hours we were covered in 13 inches of snow!  Normally, we only get 2-5 inches at a time, so this was a big deal!  My kids have never seen this much snow before and were loving it!  The dogs and the chickens weren't so thrilled....

 The dogs romped with the kids, but were less than enthusiastic.  They didn't want to stay out too long, and took refuge under the porch!

The chickens HATED the snow!  They viewed it as the white death!  For the first couple of days, they stayed in our under the coop and wouldn't come out into the snow at all... I did put up a tarp, but overnight when I didn't go down every little bit to knock the snow off, it became to heavy and fell.  Oh well, I tried!  On Friday, I did go down and shovel some of the snow out of the way and threw some leaf litter on top of the snow.  They ventured out and started scratching around once the white was covered!  Silly chickens!

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Linked up at: Tilly's Nest: Down Home Blog Hop~Number 74 + DIY Corsage and Bou...

 Check out this great Blog Hop!  There are many links to various blogs that you may like!  We have linked up with a couple of our posts as well!

Tilly's Nest: Down Home Blog Hop~Number 74 + DIY Corsage and Bou...: One of my favorite things to collect are birds nests. Over the years I have collected quite a few. A little while back HGTV asked me to...

My Grandpa's "Nearly Home-made" donuts!

Some of you may know that my grandfather passed away in November 2012.  That man was my rock, and it was a very trying time for me after he was gone.  It really warms my heart to be able to things with my kids that he did with me! 

One thing that I always loved doing with him was making nearly home-made donuts for breakfast!  It is really a simple process, but the love that was always felt when we made them was extra special! 

Ok, so what do you need for my grandpa's donuts?  Its really easy..... canned biscuits (you know the cheap ones that turn into bricks if you bake them), oil, cinnamon and sugar mix or powdered sugar.... THATS IT!

First you need to get your oil hot... We always used a pot on the stove with a couple of inches of oil in it, but we were given a deep fryer for Christmas this year!  Guess what the first thing we made in it was?!?  Yep... Donuts! 

Next, open your biscuits, and separate them.  Then gently pull the middle and make a hole... donuts have to have holes you know!  Then put it in the hot oil... when it starts to turn golden around the edges, flip it over and let the other side cook.  Take it out and roll it in the cinnamon and sugar mixture or place on a paper towel and dust the powdered sugar over top! 

Last, you let them cool for a few minutes and then eat them up!  My crew of 6 can put away 20-30 of these little gems!  They are so yummy, and the memories they bring back are priceless! 

Monday, January 27, 2014

Feather Christmas Ornaments- DIY

Today's post is a tutorial for Christmas ornaments made using feathers from my flock!  It is a really easy craft project that results in a beautiful ornament for your tree.  This is the perfect gift for any chicken lover!  There will definitely be a few of these on my Christmas tree this year! 

All you need is some clear glass ornaments, some feathers from your flock, and a q-tip. You can use as little or as many feathers as you like, depending on how "full" you want your ornament to look!

 After you gather your supplies, take the cap off of the ornament.  I found that it helped to sit the ornament into a small custard bowl so it wasn't rolling around.
 Next, you begin placing your feathers into the ornament.  Once you have several in there, you can begin to use the q-tip to arrange the feathers along the sides of the ornament.  I wouldn't suggest using your finger, because you may cut yourself!  You could also use a pencil, chop-stick or some other long skinny object.

Just continue to place feathers into the ornament and arrange them along the sides of your ornament.  When you are satisfied with the way your ornament looks, you are done!  Replace the metal cap, add a hook, and it is ready to hang on your tree!

I hope to make several of these for my own tree this year!  I will probably make a few for friends and family as well!  I hope you enjoyed this DIY-tutorial and will make some for your own tree!  You have all year to collect feathers from your chickens, and have them ready for Christmas!

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Book Review of Fresh Eggs Daily by Lisa Steele

Fresh Eggs Daily by Lisa Steele

I recently purchased and then won a copy of Lisa Steele's new book Fresh Eggs Daily.  This book goes along with the Fresh Eggs Daily blog, which provides information on raising chickens naturally without all the modern technologies and medications.  I was so excited to get my copy that I went to the post office to pick it up, rather than wait for them to deliver it the next day!

First off, the book is absolutely beautiful, with gorgeous photos of Lisa's own chickens and colors that many chicken lovers can find in their egg baskets!  Blues and greens, creams and browns,  just like eggs from our own back yard flocks!


 Lisa goes into detail on every aspect of your coop and run setup.  She talks about coop size, ventilation, predator proofing, herbs to use in your coop, as well as giving you recipes for a refresher spray and a coop cleaner!  I made a batch of the coop cleaner, and was very pleased with the results!  I have even used it to mop my own floors in the house! (With 4 little ones, it often gets quite sticky!)  She talks about nesting boxes, landscaping the run, creating a dust bath area and many other details that you might otherwise overlook! 

In the book, there are several chapters on feeding your chickens.  These include seasonal considerations, treats, and herbs that you can add at various times to your chickens diets!  There are recipes for several treats, feed mixes, and other things such as Home-Made Apple cider vinegar (pg 52) and Home-made Electrolytes (pg 67).  She also includes directions for an herb drying rack and a treat feeder!

There are specific chapters dedicated to summer, winter and when the chickens are molting, which can be stressful on their bodies!  Lisa also included lists of what herbs to use for what, and what plants are safe or toxic to your chickens!  Such as Basil and Garlic as antibacterials and Mint as an insecticide and rodent deterrent!  These herbs are covered in the chapters as well as in charts at the end of the book for easy access! 

One of my favorite parts of the book is the chapters on broody hens and chicks in the brooder!  Lisa provides a wealth of information for this very fun and stressful time of chicken keeping!  Again, she gives lists of herbs that can help keep your hen and chicks healthy and happy.  There are also suggestions on setting up your brooder and starting your chicks out as naturally as possible. 

The last chapter in the book is about possible illnesses and problems that you might run into during the adventure of chicken keeping.  There are details of preventative care, as well as symptomatic treatments.  Lisa suggests preparing a first aid kit and having it available so that you can provide treatment as soon as possible, and she gives a list of her recommendations for what needs to be included.  She covers the major illnesses and treatments for them, that are often seen in backyard flocks, including respiratory, eye problems, crop problems, egg binding, and a few others.  Parasites and prevention is also included with a natural wormer recipe using pumpkins!

This book and the website, has become my go-to source for chicken information!  I love knowing that my chickens, who provide food for my family,  are healthy and happy without the use of chemicals and antibiotics.  I love that Lisa Steele, promotes raising chickens the way that our grandparents and great-grandparents for generations have done!  In my opinion this book is one that should be included in any back yard chicken keeper's library!

If you would like to check out the Fresh Eggs Daily blog, the web address is:

If you would like to order a copy of the book, you can do so at