WARNING: If you don’t want to learn about where GOOD food really comes from and wish to remain ignorant to how chickens are harvested on a homestead then do not read any further!
Homestead Meat Chickens
Our new homesteading friends invited us to their homestead this weekend to participate in their chicken harvest.They had a couple other friends over to help with the process, so the six of us worked through the afternoon processing their 15 meat chickens, culminating everything with a wonderful dinner of fried chicken that could not be any more fresh and independent!
You can take a moment to see the chickens just before we harvested them here:
Unfortunate circumstances have come about that have caused us to find new homes for our chickens. The cost to fight these issues is greater than we have the time and finances for at this time so we reached out to our friends to find new homes for our hens. This ended up being a mixed blessing for us in the end and worked out for the best.
Martha was able to reach out to a co-worker who she had heard kept chickens. We asked if they would be willing to take in our hens since we could no longer keep them. Thankfully they graciously accepted to take them and offered to give us fresh eggs from time-to-time as well. On top of all this it tuns out they are also homesteaders who strive to have an independent lifestyle, much like us! Continue reading
Our bees were spotted covering the front of the outside of their hive this weekend (called bearding) and we made a decision about our hens. So we wanted to share a quick video update on the bees and hens.
Our backyard was in pretty poor shape when we first moved into our new homestead about a year ago. The lawn had a lot of bare patches due to being washed out. Underneath our deck also got muddy when it rained because grass couldn’t grow there. Fixing these problems became a priority for us this spring.
The first thing we did was fix the mud issue under the deck by putting in a patio. We did this ourselves, but that story can be saved for another time! The next thing we did to improve the situation was install our rain barrels on the downspouts. This captured most of the water and the remaining water that occasionally spills over we redirected to a channel with lots of rocks to break up the flow. Continue reading
Last week we talked about how our Concord hive has been lagging behind the progress of the Lexington hive. It was at the point where we were concerned that we may have to put the feeder back in the hive to help them build up wax comb.
We are happy to report that Concord hive looks to be on its way to recovery! We had a really good week for bees with sunshine and heat everyday. Concord must have had a lot of new bees hatch as well. Take a look at these before and after photos. The first was last week when we were concerned, it was taken in the evening when most of the bees should have been back in the hive.
Concord Hive - 1 Week Ago - Very Weak
Compare that to the photo taken today in the middle of the day when its more likely for the bees to be out and about! They’re a lot more bees and the comb is built all the way across on several bars, and they even have a new bar they are starting wax on in the front!
It looks like Concord hive is back on track so we will be leaving it alone for another week or two before doing another full inspection. Since it looks so good we did not put in the feeder like we thought we might have to last week either.
That’s all, just wanted to let everyone know that there’s nothing to worry about with our Concord hive!
You can see more pictures from this latest inspection on our Facebook Page.
Have you noticed it? How prices keep going up and up? The inflation going on right now is ridiculous, and one of the areas that we’ve seen that most acutely is in the price of alcohol. We’re not big drinkers, but we like a bottle or glass of something every once in a while. That habit is costing more and more, though, and it’s not because the quality is improving.
Saving Bottles For Homebrewing
We started looking at homebrewing to address the costs of beer. While homebrewing is not cheaper than buying basic domestic beer, since you get a high quality product, it does seems to be cheaper than it would be to buy equivalent beer. Plus it’s a lot more environmentally friendly. Think about the gas it takes to ship that case of beer in glass bottles from the bottling facility. If you homebrew, the bottles are shipped once, and then you can reuse them indefinitely. Talk about decreasing your food (or drink) miles! Continue reading
The weather has been great for the local wildflowers, we see them blossoming all over the place now. This also means our bees have been on overdrive gathering nectar and pollen. Meaning they might be filling up their comb faster than they can make it or have room to make it!
It had been a little over two weeks since our last full inspection of the hives. We didn’t feel we had to do a full inspection since there’s been lots of activity in both hives, but we did want to make sure they had ample space to expand comb if needed. Continue reading
Well, George is at it again. Or more aptly, I’ve put him up to it again. Improving the house, that is.
Inside the home, we have done an amazing amount of work to improve the place in one short year. One eyesore that remained was a set of carpeted stairs. This staircase was the only carpeted area in the house, and the carpet was trashed. The color wasn’t great to begin with, and there were pet stains to boot.
Well, we lived with this carpeted staircase for a year. Every time we had a party, I cringed at the thought of people seeing the stained stairs. But we had too many other things to do, until now…. Continue reading
Machined Metal Part Requiring Criminal Background Check
After anxiously awaiting the arrival of all the parts for my new AR they all finally arrived! Yes, I had to go through yet another background check for a chunk of machined metal (the lower receiver, which by itself would be no more dangerous than a large rock), even though I already own many guns, was literally openly carrying one of my guns during the check/transfer, and used my state concealed handgun permit as my second form of ID. Once I recovered from the irony of the gun control nonsense I had to wade through to take my AR parts home I could begin with the fun stuff! Continue reading
The first would be a small, portable solar panel setup that we could set out on our deck when we needed it. It’s possible to make these for not too much money, like described here, or here‘s one for sale at Overstock.com: