PSA – Skin Cancer

We interrupt our regularly scheduled program for this PSA…


Wear your sunscreen, don’t use tanning beds and get your skin checked yearly.

I had a Moh’s procedure done Last Wednesday to remove a basil cell carcinoma on my shoulder.

I try to wear sunscreen pretty regularly when I’m purposely out in the sun, but I’m also of a generation who are kind’ve on the cusp of the awareness or our parent’s awareness of the long term effects of the sun so there was lots of damage done in my early years, and I’m embarrassed to say a couple of short stints of tanning bed use.

The scar isn’t a big deal to me. I have so many at this point, what’s one more?

What is a big deal is the possibility of something worse: melanoma. Melanoma is scary stuff, ya’ll.  I don’t know if you know it, but in it’s later stages, melanoma is a death sentence.

I’m not interested in losing out on any of this…

…so I’m going to be more diligent about sunscreen on a daily basis and during colder months.

Additionally, this summer I’ll be investing in rash guards, hats, the whole 9 yards.  Fashion be damned.

Better safe than dead.

Chicken Low and Chicken High

The low came Sunday evening as we were getting ready to leave for church and we were trying to round up the chickens, hoping to convince them to go to bed early since we knew we’d be home after dark.  I didn’t see Fancy but eventually found her under a parked car. I instantly knew something was up.  After I retrieved her from under the car with no protest from her, my fears were confirmed.  She had very labored breathing and kept closing her eyes.  Her comb had turned very pale and she looked near death.

Josh tried getting her to drink and then tried giving her a vitamin supplement that sent her into convulsions.  He ended up putting her out of her misery.

She seemed just fine at every point up until then, and apparently Sudden Chicken Death Syndrome is a thing, usually heart related.

Fancy got her name because she had pretty gold feathers, a large comb, and no matter how many times we clipped her wings she would still fly over the fence just to show us she could.  We joked …”oh, she thinks she fancy!” and that’s how she got her name.

She will be missed. She was the last remaining hen from the original chicks and the only one who laid white eggs. Poor Nolan cried when I told him she wasn’t going to make it and exclaimed “Now, I’ll never see a white egg, again!”

We don’t know what caused her death, but we’ll keep an eye on the rest of the flock and start giving them some various preventative things and hopefully all will be well.

RIP Fancy: 2016-2017

The high came last night. I came home and looked around the yard and saw a missing Buff Orpington.  A few minutes later I saw her sneak out from the shed. I glanced under and didn’t see any eggs. After dinner I went out to close the coop and that dang chicken was gone again.  There she was, under the shed. She’d gone broody. Meaning she was sitting on eggs expecting them to hatch. Um, no, honey, that’s not how nature works when there’s no rooster.

I managed to use a stick to convince her to leave. I didn’t want something getting her in the night.  She was not very happy with me and I could hear her squawking from the coop for a good 5 minutes.  Meantime, I knew there were eggs under there because that’s what broody hens do. Sit on eggs. I used a rake to pull them out.

Ya’ll.

YA’LL!

There were 23 eggs under there.  I did the egg freshness test…

and they all passed!

There were no white eggs and we’ve been getting about one white and 1-2 brown ones/day in the nesting box for a week or two as things warmed up, so my best guess is that two of the older Buff Orpingtons and Fancy were laying in the nesting box.  That means that our younger hens, Chicoletta and Little Red, must have started laying in addition to the broody Buff. I mean, how else do you have 23 still fresh eggs out there!?

Craziness!

I’m was feeling pretty disheartened about the chicken situation after Fancy and the egg find helped a little. I’m hoping to build them a new coop and run in a couple of months as it warms up and we hopefully will be putting a little less $ and energy into the rental house we’re getting ready to list.

I’m thinking something like this, with a little supervised free ranging most days.

So, that’s the latest on our ongoing chicken saga!

Spring is sprouting

Well, the garden is in!


I used the same gate and fencing from the backyard in last year’s garden. I had to buy one more roll to complete it.

I picked up a few more t-posts and two cattle panels for the tomatoes, cucumbers and pole beans.


I’ve got the broccoli, kale, lettuce, carrots, bunching onions and some spinach planted. I need to start some more Kale and spinach. I’m trying to use the spinach as a border.

I still need to get the chard in and I’m waiting for it to warm up before I put in the tomatoes and peppers.

I bought a heat mat to get the peppers to germinate and it’s working great.


I learned how to make this grow box on YouTube.


Once the seeds germinate and sprout I move them into the windowsill or cold box.


I moved a few things out of the box today and moved cucumbers in. Re-potting them from the soil blocks where they started to sprout into the Styrofoam cups.

I’m also growing herbs and flowers and ended up sprouting some spaghetti squash seeds because I couldn’t resist when they were already sprouting inside the organic squash I bought at the store.


Now they’re growing quite well in the pots. I guess they’ll go down on the hill with the other larger plants like the watermelon.

I’m thinking of growing the eggplant and zucchini in containers to save room in the garden.


The cold box is working very well, too! Everything is staying protected and thriving.

So that’s the current update and hopefully everything will start taking off soon.