It continues to be busy here in our neck of the “woods”. Someday I will have to accept that this is “normal”, however it is nice to once in awhile dream of a slower pace. Earlier this week I was even able to experience a slower pace, but not in a way that I wanted to–more on that later.
I will have to back up even earlier–last week to catch everyone up on the pictures and activities. Here are pictures of the beautiful snow that came down last week. It didn’t even last a day for the most part, but it covered up the ugly snow that was left from the great “inversion” snow in January:
I love the way the sun was starting to reflect on windows in the early morning light.
The snow wasn’t that deep but it covered old ice-encrusted patches that were brown and gray. This looked fresh and fluffy. It was actually quite wet.
It was warm enough the chicken coop could be opened but the chickens were not interested in coming out. They don’t like that “white stuff”.
Unfortunately it wasn’t real easy to take a clear picture. The hens want so bad to come out but when they find out it has snowed again, they quickly change their minds and stay inside on their roosts.
During the coldest part of January, we were fortunate to get four eggs most days. The hens ate well, but didn’t produce too much because they needed all they ate to maintain themselves. We expected this from the Rhode Island Reds, but were surprised at the other five hens. One of them didn’t lay every day. As it has started to warm up, they are giving us 5-6 eggs per day, so someone still isn’t laying eggs. This made it interesting for DS as his one customer requested two dozen eggs per week, one for his brother and one for himself. Unfortunately, this meant that a couple of weeks I had to buy eggs when I bought groceries so that he could sell ours. The eggs from the store just weren’t as good and I’m glad the hens are laying better.
To help meet the request and future requests, we have placed an order for eight new chicks to be picked up on March 12. We have ordered four black Australorp pullets, three Golden Sex Link pullets, and one Golden Sex Link cockerel. Yes, we’re going to try a rooster again. DS needs to be able to have at least one hen sit on some eggs and hopefully have chicks, so we’re trying a different breed. This batch will also be handled more in an attempt to try and make sure that we don’t have a nasty tempered rooster again. From the research we’ve been able to do, supposedly Golden Sex Link roosters have a much better temperament, so we will see.
Happy Valentine’s to everyone! I rarely make sugar cookies as I don’t find them to be all that nutritious, however it was Valentine’s so a small batch of them were baked off. I prefer to serve the family oatmeal cookies with the occasional chocolate chips or raisins. These were not frosted and I decided to avoid drizzling glaze over them as we’ve all been sick with the “crud” at one time or another in the last couple of weeks. DD was home sick from work and not feeling well enough to do her schoolwork what with a temperature and all, but even these had so little sugar that I could give her a couple of the small ones to try and cheer her for Valentine’s. DH has some in his lunch tonight at work.
Last, but certainly not least, my crockpot liner has bit the big one and began to leak so it has been retired. This has been a challenge because I love to cook beans and legumes in the crockpot during the day and not have to constantly fuss over them. Today, I wanted some black turtle beans for a black bean chili, so I pulled out a pan to cook a cup of dry beans. That doesn’t sound like very much but after cooking them with lots of water and a bit of salt and chili powder for approximately 2 hours, they were beginning to look like they might have more than doubled.
For supper this evening I used approximately 1/2 of these plus 1/2 quart tomato juice from our garden, 1 8-ounce can tomato paste, 1 cup of reconstituted texturized vegetable protein (TVP), 1/4 onion chopped, 1 clove minced garlic, more chili powder, a dash of black pepper, a dash of cumin, a dash of oregano leaves and a dash of basil leaves. When I make chili, I typically just start “dumping” until it looks good and tastes good. I also added a couple of teaspoons of brown sugar and approximately 1 1/2 teaspoons of cocoa powder. Once that was all boiling, I turned down the fire and let it simmer while I made creamed corn/cornmeal patties. We eventually sat down to the patties with chili over them and sour cream and/or shredded mozzarella cheese for those who wanted it. I think DH even added some hot taco sauce to his, though I was sure it was hot enough from the chili powder.
Now for the “later”: Ever since New Year’s, I have off and on been fighting a nagging cold that refuses to go totally away. First I lost my voice. Then I dealt with a cough and drainage. Just when that was starting to get better, our competition season for Pathfinders got into full swing so there was no rest most weekends as we had church and study or competition sessions on Sabbath and Sunday was busy with my 12-hour shift at work. Last Monday, I thought I was doing just fine. I took DD to work, and went shopping at the grocery store with DS. I was a bit tired, but didn’t think too much of it. However, when I went to pick up DD at work, I was so tired and couldn’t wait to get back home.
DH had a lovely supper of homemade pizza pockets and salad ready when we arrived at home. After supper, I really started feeling tired and after a quick call from GPID, I curled up on our bed and went to sleep. That might sound normal, however, it isn’t. Usually I’m still busy doing other things, but I couldn’t keep my eyes open and I started feeling cold. I barely remember DH going to work and sort of remember hearing him tell the kids what time they were to go to bed. I slept until 12:30 AM followed by sleep interrupted by waking up approximately once every two hours. he rest did me good, but it soon became apparent that I had a low-grade temperature and a virus. Most of Tuesday was spent resting, though I did make it to one meeting at work that was mandatory and I didn’t want to have to do another makeup one.
I was so very tired and badly needed all of the sleep I could get. This whole week I have tried to be in bed as early as possible. Tonight I’m not quite so successful. However, everyone else is in bed so that is where I am headed while I can still hope that I am making sense. So I’m off for some more much needed sleep as tomorrow promises to be just as busy or busier than usual. Make sure you take care of yourself and get plenty of sleep. You don’t want this stuff.