Our Mission

To live a self-sufficient and organic lifestyle for the next half century. With the Grace of God and the power of prayer, we will succeed. Nothing is impossible with His help. It wouldn't be us without laughter and joy at the Cockeyed Homestead.

Sunday, May 22, 2016

We've Been Busy on the Homestead

This week has been a hectic one at the Cockeyed Homestead. We got most of the Spring planting done. Yeah!!!There are still items we need to plant and replant.

Mel refenced around the raised beds to keep the chickens out. ( YouTube video ) But, while three sides were fenced with four foot fencing one side closest to the house only was fenced with three foot wire. The chickens can fly over it. I discovered them one afternoon IN my fairly new planted raised beds. To say I was angry with them was an understatement. Visualize my face red with steam coming out of my ears. Not so pretty words came out of my mouth too as I chased them from the garden area. While the three foot fence kept the soon to be dinner out of the garden last year, the chickens are fully grown this year. While they are big, heavy birds, they can jump and fly pretty high for short distances.

Two days of planting is ruined I think. It's hard to tell with so many tiny seeds and the way the chickens scratched up the ground. I'll have to wait to see what germinates and where. With everything in the beds rearranged a la chickens I have no idea what will or won't come up. Talk about frustration. I believe Mel will fix this problem this coming week. By the way, thank you to all the viewers who sent seeds to Mel. Besides the specialty seeds I brought, we only had to buy Cayenne pepper seeds this year. Y'all were very generous.

We redesigned our logo to include us. We like this one a whole lot better. For one, the rabbit although bigger is not huge like the previous version of the design. Mel is feeding her beloved chickens. GRRR! Still upset no matter how many delicious eggs they produce. I'm holding a bottle of homemade soap and grooming the rabbit. The dog is being silly like both are and the cat is spazzing out like they all are. Even the word "cockeyed" is at a cockeyed angle. Mel beat me to the redesign. This is the only place we have a conflict. We both prefer editing videos and graphics. Both of us have extensive experience in both. I let her do it with input from me. No, I'm not a nag, but I'm a side seat driver.

The rabbits have all been shaved and groomed. They are now on a twice week grooming schedule. Shaved rather than plucked because of all the mats in their fur. With the Jersey Woolies, their fur had actually felted to their bodies.

Kinley in full bloom
We came to a decision about the rabbits. We will be only keeping the three pure bred English angoras (Kinley, Dustin, and Tempest) as the beginnings of our pure bred angora line. They will be our breeding trio. English angoras over my beloved French angoras. Compromises are essential to a happy homestead. I'm going to keep my beloved bunny, Buddy, as a house pet. She is litter trained and such a character. We will be keeping my American Chinchillas (Kieran and Colleen) as meat rabbits. Even if we only breed them three times a year, it will supply us 190-240 pounds of meat each year. The Jersey Woolies will be sold as pets. Their wool, although thick, is too short to spin comfortably. Mel is bowing to my wisdom in this. Everything has got to have a purpose on the homestead otherwise it is wasting money. The English angoras will produce enough fur (if sold as straight wool or hand spun yarn), or selling their offspring to keep them all in hay and food for a year.

The chickens are another story. Mel is in love with her chickens and they are between a year to two and a half years old. Of the three roosters, we will keep Whitie because we have to have a rooster. Roosters serve an important function in the flock. They corral the hens. They protect their girls. They call their hens to food sources. They fertilize the eggs for further production value. Whitie fills these function while the other two just have their way with the hens. So much so the hens are loosing their feathers. Being that they are over a year old, they will be tough and difficult to process. But that being said, into the pressure canner they will go. They are prime for long term storage or long cooked meals.

Colleen escaped her cage again! We are presently trying to catch her again. I think when we wash the cages. They were neglected too. Yucky! I'll put Colleen in one of the upper cages. She doesn't jump from high places. I'll also be breeding her to Kieran. Maybe with a litter to care for it will break her of her wayward ways. She doesn't venture far a field and can be found visiting with her other housemates, but actually grabbing her is another story.

Well, that's our update from the Cockeyed Homestead. Be blessed.

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