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Still not seeing much of Gertrude...had to look back in this thread to see how long she'd been gone! Looks like we're 2+ weeks in. Should have chicks in a week or Gertrude back in the coop even if they don't hatch/are eaten by something else.

I picked a window yesterday! Marvin "elevate" line. Fiberglass exterior in "cashmere" which matches the blue part of the blued pine siding and bare pine interior. I am "upgrading" to the brushed nickel interior hardware. The did the estimate with a standard almond powder coat but everything else is metal or wood, or the chocolate brown bracket and floor. I didn't want to add the almond color. I like metal and wood together.
about 7000$ for 8 windows...3 of them 4' wide and 6' tall, 5 at 2' wide, 6' tall. They are sending out the estimator to measure and come up with the installation estimate. If they need a lift, that will be more $$. I have a cousin-in-law in Minnesota who likes the brand and quality. He said to go for this over the next level down which also had vinyl/fiberglass interior finish because he said with all the wood at my house, the plastic finish would really stand out. The clerestory cheapo windows are plastic but 7 feet above eyeline. They stand out, but are not really in my line of site. still...might color them something different eventually. I wonder if I could decoupage on some vintage batik fabric...or better yet, let my mom do it. She's crafty. I'm not.
 

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Gertrude is killing me!! She should have hatched the eggs about now or in a couple of days... so she is around more but no sigh of chicks. Just got home from laundry and errands. She was with the others when I fed them in the morning. Still with them 8 hours later...or with them again? Is the a go-pro-hen model so I can see where she spends her time when I am out?
Thursday I got home at about 5 and it was drizzling. Gertrude was wet and with the others and pecked my boot and ran toward the feed bin. The feeder was empty and apparently she was hungry. I fed the chickens a bit and she was all over it. Then no sign of her yesterday, Friday, so I figured still on the best or with babies. I can't find her nest or I would keep water and food near it and try to fence out predators. So... are there still eggs or chicks? Is she one of the crappy hens that goes broody then kills the chicks? (She IS from saint maries idaho which is famous for bad parenting). I am home the rest of today and all tomorrow. Hopefully I can figure out what is up


In other news. No window install estimate yet. Will call Monday if they don't send something.

Did I share that the new Honda probably does NOT need a transmission, just plugs and a serpentine belt? That is a relief, for now. Something will come up.

I got supplied to start my summer mustard business. 1st farmers market is June 4. I getting plants together to repot and sell. Managed to get 7 lovage plants going in pots when I moved the main plants. I may do up a vermocomposter or two and might have a bit worm compost to sell.

I have no idea how to price stuff though! Any tips on that are welcome
 

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STill no chicks! Haven't seen Gertrude in 2 days. Hope she has chicks and hasn't been eaten herself. I am starting to doubt my feed is good. 2 hens laying soft eggs despite eating buckets of oyster shells. They are eating bugs and grass too. So really, even without feed they have enough protein and calcium. They are both old. Still thinking about it.

I splurged on discounted but new knee high rubber boots. My current pair is over a decade old. Quite possibly 25+ years old. I think I got them in grad school. My feet have widened up over the years and the boots tear holes in my pinky toes AND my sox. I wear them almost daily for half the year and am sick of sore feet. The new ones are men's lacrosse brand with steel shanks and enough room for some wool insoles. I don't need the insulation, I just like the cushion on my old bones. 30$ on deep discount. Really not bad. Local logger boot shop going out of business sale. Grabbed some obenoff's boot grease too. I use it on everything leather and it works on furniture.

Also today, I visited some folks who are building an off grid homestead. The did a timber frame cabin with pegs and they used the spend organic finish I am going to use. It gave me an idea of how much to buy. Their little cabin is very cute! Maybe 20x14 feet for a young couple and a toddler. Just to get them by for a while. It is a big 3 generation family trying out homesteading. Neat place they have set up.

Lots going on this week. Tomorrrow the window contractor comes to measure and estimate the job. Hope it is under 3k$ for the install! Fingers crossed.
 

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Silly chickens, hope you find yours soon. A good pair of footwear is definitely worth the expense, getting a discount is a bonus.
 
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of course chick pics will be needed if they show up! better then the rat that ran up the tree by the garage dh told me about...proof now that that all the old dumpy garages are gone they moved into ours and so clean the garage!
 

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I saw Gertrude head up the hill for food so I ran (actually ran...and here I always swore I would only run if there was a bear and I was not the slowest person...seems I will also run to see if there are chicks.).
2 eggs were broken. 1 had a mostly formed chick, feathers and all. THe other was dried up. Must have busted early on. There were 5 eggs still there. I don't know...I looked up when the embryo develops feathers and looks like a chick...should have been at least day 17,possibly 19. They should be out on day 21. So I figure if there are no chicks by June 2 I should give up and maybe empty the nest. She's getting darn skinny! I put a chick waterer, which Gert can drink from as well, and a pan of food by the nest this morning. She didn't come up hill all day so that must have helped.

The banty was laying in a nest outside the coop but I think that is because I startled her yesterday just before she dropped an egg in the nest box. I think she ran out and just laid it. Then followed up in the same spot today. I'll keep an eye though. I wouldn't mind her raising some chicks. She's tough and puts out an egg a day at over 4 years old! Also hilarious.

I noted in the garden thread that the garden is in (oh crap! have to run out and shut the water off...back in a minute....ok...good, didn't mess up the well/cistern system by running it dry). Still need to get the rest of the sheep poo on it as mulch.

Wrote a giant check to the window people Friday. Here's hoping it all works out. Best guess they had was the windows are 8 weeks out. That gives me a target for getting finish on the place.

The farmers market locally starts Friday, the one I sell at anyway. I've got mustards brewing (well, soaking). And I bought starts from the friend I was helping out last year by selling those directly. I potted them up in cute planters (or I think they are cute)
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We'll see if people will buy them. The one with the pair of cans has 2 more on the other side. It's a portable herb garden. I also did some lettuces in old tins that I don't use anymore. The wood is scraps from the house build and the cans are from 2nd harvest distributions. I did some with the cans unpainted and like them better. We'll see what people want, or if they just are not interested.
I'm making a vermicomposter, if time allows, because my worms are beyond ready to split. I am pretty sure I know who will buy it. If it doesn't sell, then I have 2 which is fine.

I'm hoping the friend who tags along will do some baked goods to help fill up the table space. The mustards are a compact display and my plant friend isn't sending a ton of starts because it was too much driving back and forth. Instead I've asked her to email me a list of what is available and the prices. I can take prepaid orders for delivery at the next market. We are 2 weeks later seasonwise here than where the plants are grown just 35 miles away as the crow flies! Mountains are strange! I grew up in Iowa. The season hit the whole state the same day.

If anyone has pricing ideas on the planters, let me know. I'm about 40$ in between plants, the drill bit that could do metal, paint, and cord (plenty of paint and cord left and the bit has years to go but I'd still like the money back sooner rather than later).
I did calculations on the mustards and the price has to go up. Mostly it's the cost of the jar and fuel! Not the ingredients. I'm raising the price 1$ per jar for both the 4oz and the 8oz sizes.

Alright, time for bed. it's 8:45...actually late! and I still need to do yoga to avoid back pain from the hours in the garden (it was hot and after 3 hours i STUNK! I showered in some tepid water in partial view of the highway thanks to the dry weather killing the shrub that formerly completed the private space under a spruce tree...I didn't really care. Keep your eyes on the road if you don't want to barf)
 

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lol if they want to look let them. they are the peeping toms. the hanging plants are cute! too bad about her eggs but can't they nest somewhere safe in a diff coop or something? good luck with the farmers market! I think everything is going up so people will realize everyone has to raise the rates.
 

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If anyone has pricing ideas on the planters, let me know. I'm about 40$ in between plants, the drill bit that could do metal, paint, and cord (plenty of paint and cord left and the bit has years to go but I'd still like the money back sooner rather than later).
I did calculations on the mustards and the price has to go up. Mostly it's the cost of the jar and fuel! Not the ingredients. I'm raising the price 1$ per jar for both the 4oz and the 8oz sizes.
Jars are expensive. I've known companies that cancelled product because the bottles ate all their profit. Years ago a friend and I were looking into making bath salts and scrubs, and the cost of jars was more than we'd make in sales.

Anyway, I saw some similar rustic planters with 3 cans, unpainted listed at $39 each on Etsy. No herbs included, so that might be a ballpark figure. I dunno. Rustic Hanging Planter aluminum can garden hanging | Etsy

Succulents are hot right now. If you can propagate those in tin cans they might sell. I saw another Etsy vendor selling pint Ball jars of worm compost tea for $6. You might be able to bag up chicken shit, just an idea.

Good luck with the chicken aggs.
 
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Well...people gushed over the planters but would not buy. Ended up lucky to get 3$. Bags of poo might sell. I have a vermicomposter but I use the poo from that. Mustard sold like bonkers so hac
Be 5 jars of that mixed up to grind and sell next week.

O baby chicks. The eggs under Gertrude were not hatched. I grabbed one and shook...sloshing sound. Chucked it at the creek and it exploded on contact. The mostly developed chick must have been the only one the incubated well. All the ones under her heaterday were completely rotted. Just rank liquid. She was super upset. It wha else to do? Those eggs were not viable.
 

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Bummer about the sales and the eggs. Hope you find your niche soon and Gertrude give you some good eggs.
 
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I spent a few days with a rich aunt (who is proof that money does NOT make you happy!) in Bodega Bay, CA. That was fun. She and the uncle would NOT let me pay for so much as a cup of coffee which was a tad patronizing, but it made them happy to indulge the poor relation. AND I get a bedroom with a view of the bay. No whales this time. Did see a bobcat hunting on the bluff and a jack rabbit twice the size of the bobcat.
We toured a "pygmy forest" and rhododendron preserve and went to see some cool, outdoor art shows. REALLY good food but way way way too rich and salty so back to my thriftier healthier (for me) ways now.

I flew southwest and they were 2/3 full so most middle seats naturally stayed vacant. They were SUPER strict with the masks which is fine because the crew is stuck on these planes with people all day and breaks are in airports. I had a direct flight then a shuttle van (masks and distancing) ride up to much closer to their house than the airport. Overall, a great trip.

Back at the ranch...I am finally thankful for my clay soils though...could be quite a bit less clay'y. They held enough water in the gardens to keep the plants going while I was gone. The solar system vs well pump is an ongoing battle and I don't have anyone trained on it yet. USUALLY we'd be getting enough rain but not this year. So I waterlogged all the gardens and raised beds for 3 days before I left. Lots of things came up while I was gone.

Gertrude has rejoined the flock. Not clear if she's laying yet. Will keep an eye on her this weekend. I had set up lots of mustards to soak while I was gone so I could hit the ground running at the farmers market this afternoon. I was grinding and jarring and labeling until 11pm last night! I AM TIRED! Did another type this morning so have5 kinds and many jars going to market. the hope is to get ahead of things. So I'm not grinding mustard until 11pm again. We'll see.

A few plants to sell as well.

The chicken sitters couldn't find the eggs...hens decided to lay on the floor and poop in the next boxes. They can really be dicks sometimes.

Man...I'm dozing off at my desk while I type this. I need to sleep in a day or two over the weekend.
 

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So, Gertrude must be laying again. FINALLY. I threatened her. Of course, Suzanne isn't soup yet. I think of the non-layers as "meat on the hoof" (talon?). When I need meat, off with their heads. Anyway, I'm getting 2 brown eggs some days again. One will be a bit poorly formed. I'll get her a week to get back on full production. Blue eggs are slowing down and white ones (formerly 2 a day) have not reappeared. They must be laying elsewhere. Darn it. THe community garden has hens that need summer homes as their current housing is too hot. I said I could take a few for the summer and bring the back in the fall. Should find out next week.

I'm working on my finish order. So complicated figuring coverage and area and which ones...but, has to be done!
I have cousins visiting at some point this week with their own RV! Hope they don't think they will be plugging in to the solar. not a thing! Not at all. So far they have delayed a full day. I hope the huckleberry bread is still good and not compeletely eaten by me before they get here.

Things here continue to open up. My yoga studio opens again for fully vaxed and with simulcast on zoom in July. And the radio station I do a bi weekly show on will let us back in (vaccinated of us anyway) starting monday. I have the show tomorrow and begged to be let back in. We were the last live non-news show and I wanted to be the first live non-news show back on. Circle of life you know.

We are hot as hades here!

Mustard business doing OK at the farmers market. Fathersday tomorrow so sold about 150 bucks worth of mustard yesterday with my "dads love mustard sign". 4th of July should go well too. The market in St Maries Idaho is where I've been selling and holy cow! 32 vendors this year!! Some vendors are ticked that they can't get in! It's a town of about 3000, tops. Last year usually 15 vendors a week. Getting a bit squeezed now and people begging "just let me set up in the middle just this once!"...uh..no. We'll end up with all the folks on the waiting list ticked off and setting up in the middle and that doesn't work. I found out the bread guy is truly making enough to live on making bread once a week. Not enough to be rich or live WELL but to keep body and soul together so that's cool. his wife teaches and has the insurance for him and the kids. Between them, they are OK and a super cute little family.

Other than waiting on my windows...they should arrive August 1-ish, that's all the action at the homesite.
 

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Ha! Busted! The banty was announcing her most recent birth this morning and I could tell about where she was. Found a nest with 11 eggs, may partly be pearl's as well, my white leghorn, and 1 egg out of the nest. I will give her a day to decide whether to sit on them and try to hatch.

Alsi found 1 brown egg in a random spot in the grass. A big one so porky must be the mom. Cripes. Wish my chicken sitter was a tad more trainable about leaving a bait egg in the laying boxes so I didn't need to play this hunting game after being gone. But she shows up and keeps the hens alive so that is the main thing I guess
 

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I saw a wild turkey not too far from my apartment complex yesterday. It was next to the road, near the wooded area that lines the train tracks. I was surprised to see it. Hopefully it's not alone, especially since we have patches of wooded area all over various areas in town.
 
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