Saturday, June 30, 2012

Death from the heat

Yesterday was the hottest day of the year so far. And it was another training day at work. We had to be in at 0530 for weapons qualification (trying to beat the heat!).
Qualification was with the S&W 9MM, 12 gauge Shot gun and the AR-15 223.
9MM - 98 out of 100
12 gauge - 100 out of 100
AR-15 - 80 out of 100
So that's done until next January.

But I returned home at 1330 to find that all the Rabbits had died because of the heat! I gave them fresh water and feed before I left. But with temps above 100, All three were dead and had been for a while. I feel rotten, as I was not able to house them in a cooler place!
So Rabbits are not going to be a part of the homestead for any time in the future

My next post will be a much better story, with a better out come. And pictures!

Sunday, June 24, 2012

First harvest of 2012

With the new JOB and working to get the Chickens out side, Work on the Garden has taken a back seat. The whole Garden was over run with weeds and the Deer had helped them selves to all the young tomato plants! There is one bed that they did not touch because the weed cover hid the plants.

But I did get some plants in (Garlic last October) and yesterday was the day to work in there and see what I could get. The day started out with fog and the temps went up to 89, sunny for most of the day, with a good rain shower late in the afternoon.
I got two beds cleaned out and ready for planting, which is on the plan for today.

Here are the pictures of the work that was taken care of yesterday:

Just a few Turnips! Some the size of softballs!

This is the first time I have tried Garlic. Planted last October  From two heads, I got 59 cloves and harvested 59 heads! Some were small, but there are some with two and three heads! I have a rack in the house that I will put them on to cure and then most of them will be placed in the freezer for later use.

The onion bed was over run with weeds. And I have never had any luck with them in the past.

But this time they even put out some flower heads!

Terri was saying that she needed to buy some onions at the store, So I harvested her a few. Yellow sweet and Red. I planted them in late March and they did  well!  

Flowers are blooming too! The Glads are in full bloom and I staked them so they can stand tall and reach for the sun!

And we have Mums in bloom. Mark got them last fall and when they died back for the winter, I had to fight with him not to pull the plants. I cut them back and added a layer of mulch. And come early spring, they started to put out new shoots. They are in big pots and are putting out flowers like crazy. You can see the other pot of them in the picture of the Glad above.

So, there you have it. The first harvest of 2012! Today will be more work in the Garden. Weeding and planting new tomatoes and maybe green beans.

In my next post I have a story to tell that I hope will have a happy ending! I will not know the ending until next Saturday!

Tomorrow is the start of week 4 of training at work. We have completed all three written tests and I got through them with a score of 100! But this week we start weapons training and qualification and we also have a physical test to run. So keep your fingers crossed that I do not have a hart attack before the week is out!


Sunday, June 17, 2012

First day in the Sun

This being Father's Day week-end, My Son came out and spent the two day's with me. He asked if there was anything that he could help me with, and we got the Chicken yard done!
I still can not find the power cord for my camera, So he used his cell phone to take the pictures.

This is as far as I had gotten. All of the wood is recycled and the gate is from an old dog kennel.

We first added the cross members from post to post and the installed the wire fence with wire ties. I opened the door late in the afternoon and tried to get them to come out by tossing bread near the door.

"Peak a Boo", I see you! "I see you too", and I'm not coming out !

One did come out far enough to get at the bread. But took it back inside and the fight was on!
Installing the last of the wire along the back of the coop.
I have to admit that after everything was in place and I opened the door again, I pushed all of them out side!

They all stuck together, But one of them knew what to do.

As you can see she was taking advantage of the sun, but the others kept walking on her. They stayed in the yard for most of the day and when it got too hot for them, They got under the coop in the shade.
As the sun shifted and the shade got smaller and smaller, they moved back into the coop.

So, Chickens in the Sun for the first time. I can see why others can sit and just watch Chickens peck the ground. I know that the grass and weeds will not last too long. I'm glad I finally got this project done and I'm sure the Chickens are too!
Now all I have to do, is wait for the EGGS!


Monday, June 11, 2012

Week Two

Well , the start of week two of training! Tomorrow I have an interview with an Investigator to continue with the background checks. The only thing that may be a problem is the home loan. But I have work out a payment plan with the bank and will be back on track by the end of the year. That's a ways down the road, but at least I have an agreement and they are sending me hard copy of that so I can show it to the people at work.

On the home front, I spent the week-end building the Chicken yard. They are now 12 weeks old and have been in the coop for 3 weeks. It's way past time to get them out side in the sun and allow them to start to get some exercise.  No pictures, as I can not find the power cord for the camera. Keeping my fingers crossed for a new camera for my Birthday (14 June), But I will not hold my breath.

I all so harvested the first of the garlic yesterday. Just two plants. One was very small and had fallen over and when I dug down to get it, another one came with it. The second one is huge and well developed. I hope the rest are as good.
Also harvested one of the Red Onions. It was a little early, The onions are the size of tennis balls or a little larger and they are starting to put out seed pods. Have to admit that the one was a little strong. Will have to let the rest grow and harvest when they all fall over.

Well that's life in a nut shell. Another update later.

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Hello everyone,
Sorry about the tardiness, But like MDR said, "May has been a busy month"

BUT JUNE 4 IS the big day! New job starts tomorrow at 0730!

If you did not read the post about it.... I start a new job tomorrow!
Corrections Officer at the Rivers Corrections Institute, Minimum Securty Federal Prison. I applied 5 months ago and it has taken this long to get all the interviews and paperwork done.
There were 18 candidates for the 4 positions and I was one of the 4!!!

This is so much better for me and the homestead! Closer to home, 17 miles away (not 115 miles), Better pay, Almost twice what I was making at The Q!. More time at home, 2 on, 2 off, 3 on, 3 off! And a whole list of better benefits!
But 6 1/2 weeks of training before I start the real job!
Can you tell I'm really stoked about this JOB!?

I have been unemployed sense last Monday at midnight and have been keeping myself working around the homestead all week. Tuesday I spent all day helping a friend who lost her home get all her stuff into storage! She has been in this house for 20 years and because she did not handle her fiances very well and then lost her job (lay ed off after 19 years at a T.V. station!), The bank sold her house at a fast sale and she needed to be out by 0900 Wednesday morning. This was an all day thing and we did not get it done until 1900. But I got a new bed and refrigerator for my place. And she is now moved back in with her Dad until she can get things worked out.

So wish me luck and keep your fingers crossed that I get Thu the next 6 1/2 weeks!