Friday, September 29, 2006

first fire

Ok, so it isn't October yet, and today we did this...
 
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it was just too dern cold and the heater kept kicking on.
 
There are frost warnings for these parts, so a trip to the garden was in order...a few last minute clippings of Sweet Annie to dry.  Sweet Annie smells great when you dry it and arrange it in the bathroom.  That way, every time someone takes a shower-- the steam brings the fragrance back.  My Sweet Annie grew everywhere this year, there are still heaps of it to be cut.
 
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Bunches of chocolate mint, pineapple mint, and the mainstays of peppermint and spearmint were to be harvested for tea...living in the river valley, the frost may miss us....but one can never be to sure, and I wouldn't want to miss out on a cup of tea...
 
We went over to Charlie's to get our hay for the winter.  Only seven bales this year, but it sure smelled sweet and looked great.  Charlie has the best hay....or so my rabbits tell me...
 
Repairs to the hen house were also completed.  We needed to fix the window pane that the roosters had knocked out.  It went back in without any trouble, so while I was at it I re-calked the other windows.  Next time I need to remember to lay down tarp before I start.  There were little bits of white dried calk laying around...and I had to clean up every last one of them.  Sometimes the girls are curious, and I wouldn't want them eating any of the calk.
 
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Another sign of the season is the hens that are molting.  They drop their feathers, much like the leaves drop off of the trees.  In a matter of weeks, they will have grown all new feathers...just in time to keep them warm for the winter.  While they molt, they don't lay any eggs...their bodies use the extra protein to grow the new feathers.
 
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They always look beautiful when their feathers are full.  The cochins are enjoying the late afternoon sun while it lasts...

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6 comments:

Mel said...

Your fire looks so inviting! It is chilly here tonight, too, but your brother-in-law likes a chilly room and a comforter to wrap up in. Trouble is, when he wraps like a cocoon, i lose my share of the covers! Well, there are worse things, and there is always the couch, lol. I love your pictures, as always - the "kids" are looking good. And the shot of the sweet Annie is wonderful! I have never smelled it - i wonder if they sell it on eBay ;) Stay warm and enjoy that tea.

Spinner Gal said...

Oh, such a lovely fire, I'm looking forward to our first one of the season, but alas, its still too hot here for that.

Cute girls, mine are all getting new feathers too and are all pokey looking.

Cathy said...

There are times I miss fall at the farm - and you cite the very reasons.

judy said...

30 degrees this morning, a bit of icing on the deck but everything wa so wet from yesterday's rain, that there wasn't any frost. Odd, that. The stove was on and the cats stretched out in front of the fire. I have to figure out what Sweet Annie is, I wonder if we have it and I don't know it.

gtr said...

Ah, the signs of fall! We had our first fire the other day, too. Love the molting chicken pictures: ours are doing the same, trying to repair the over-roosterage from way back last spring. They look like punk rockers with new-feather spikes on their heads!

Judith said...

I don't want the frost yet--I have too much to do in the gardens. It is this time of year I find inside the house can be colder than outside on some days. Love the Sweet Annie in the bathroom idea! I'm not familiar with that plant. Does it take off everywhere? Hope you were able to harvest your mints for tea before Jack Frost visited. You've been very busy tending animals and gardens (& fiber)!

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