Last night we processed chickens, which meant that I did all of the actual "processing". Brad and Keegan did a lot of the work though. Keegan caught all of the chickens, some of which were free ranging and were not keen on being grabbed. Brad set up my work station for me which was a huge help. As always, he also did the machete swinging (my aim is shite), and the post processing cleaning and bagging of the finished product. Keegan also cleaned all of the gizzards, hearts, and livers which will become dog food, and buried the bucket full of "left-overs". To be realistic, there were only 8 of them and 3 of them silkies which didn't get processed, just culled. That is nothing compared to the amount of roosters we usually process each year. I am proud of myself for not getting over optimistic this past spring and thinking that I could take on a full load of meat birds. Maybe having debilitating morning sickness was a good thing. It kept me grounded. We kept 2 roosters out of this batch. One Keegan named Ronald, and hopefully he will be a good breeder for our speckled sussex girls. The other we call "pathetic" and he is just what his name makes him out to be. I have never seen a more tame rooster in my life, and all of our roosters are tame. The ones we intentionally keep, anyway. Einy steps up onto my arm like a parrot. Red is such a gentleman that I have seen him chase a hen across the yard with a blueberry in his mouth as a gift because she wasn't paying attention to his attempts to be romantic. This one... he is a whole other level of tame. He tries to follow us inside. When we pull into the driveway and open the car door he greets us with the dogs and tries to jump into the car. I just didn't have the heart to put him in the freezer. I was trying to reason my way out of keeping him because it is one more mouth to feed. He is worthless as a rooster, but Brad said he is happy to keep him as a pet. He is a big softy and I love him.
I'm glad to have that out of the way! Especially since we are going to be starting another animal adventure soon! My Father in-law and brother in-law showed up yesterday with a new cement pig trough! That means that we will soon have pigs! I'm not sure how many yet... or even how old they are. That means that I need to start getting the garden sectioned off to train them to the electric fence. I also need to start working on getting the waterer functional. Once that happens the pig paddock needs to be fenced off again, only bigger this time. Thankfully, a single strand of electric is easy peasy to put up.
I admit, now that I know it is happening I am a bit panicky. What if I end up having to have a c-section again and am bed-ridden? That is not the plan but you never know. Ugh... I will chalk it up to end of pregnancy worries and again say, Que Serra Serra. Whatever will be, will be... there is nothing I can do about it, regardless how big of a control freak I am. This pregnancy has forced me to relinquish control a bit and allow Brad and Keegan take more control of certain things. It has been a difficult thing to wrap my brain around. I was a student and a single mother for a long time and am used to doing everything by myself. Trusting that things will be done correctly when I'm not the one doing them is really hard for me. I'm not good at asking for help and usually just take everything on by myself. I have been having to learn that not everything will be done "my way" if I don't do them, and that is ok... sometimes. Also, if I don't take the time to teach them rather than doing it myself because it is faster and easier, they will never learn to do it, which will make life easier in the long run. Yes, I am still having issues with it. LOL The two of them have been a god send though and I don't know what I would do without them. This, like all real learning experiences, is difficult but will be a blessing.
Now some random pictures...
Typical lunch primarily from the homestead. Home-made garlic cheese spread (store-bought cheese) on freshly baked french bread (store bought flour and such) layered with shaved cucumbers (ours), cherokee purple tomato slices (ours), and a fresh peach from our tree. My eyes were bigger than my tummy and I had to share with Keegan, but oh was it good!
I love snapping beans. I did it the lazy way and carried the necessary stuff to the couch and snapped beans while watching netflix. I can't just sit and watch tv... I have to be doing something else at the same time so this was perfect. Lazy and productive at the same time. The next best thing is a simple knitting project, but I just can't get into knitting when it is hot outside, even with a baby on the way.
Beautiful halved egg yolk tomatoes waiting to be made into sauce for lasagna, pizza, and spaghetti.
The egg yolk and amish paste tomatoes once they were added to the browned sausage, hamburger, and onions (all ours). This took a couple of hours but it cooked down to a beautiful and very yummy sauce. I may use some of it tonight for pizzas. I have been making tomato sauce pretty regularly because we haven't had enough tomatoes at once to can, but if we have tomatoes I don't want to open jars of already canned sauce. Luckily, it is sooooo easy to do, though it takes some cooking time.