Day 2: Filler Post for a Busy Saturday

Okay, I guess I never said every post had to be fascinating in this challenge, right?!

Today was a busy Saturday.  We try to hoard our weekends at home for all the projects we’re working on, but every six weeks or so we stack a bunch of errands that can only be done in the city.  But the day just disappears with all the running around we do!  And it always amazes me that we used to spend just about every weekend like this.  We’d go out to do one thing, and end up spending all day driving around to various stores, then get hungry and have to find somewhere to eat out.  We would spend a bunch of money we hadn’t intended to and come home exhausted.  Which still happened a little today. 🙂  But at least it isn’t nearly as often!

We started the day with our first step in integrating our Blue-Laced Red Wyandotte chicks (now 5 weeks old) with the rest of our flock (now 9-11 weeks, and considerably larger!).  We decided to take the 4 chicks down in their brooder and set the whole cage in the larger run outside.  It was all a big adventure, but it seemed to go reasonably well.  The idea is to get the two groups used to each other being around, without being able to peck at each other and do any damage.  We’ll do the same thing again tomorrow, and hope to gradually integrate them over the course of the week.  We’re pushing the timeline a little, as some folks advise spending many weeks with this process, but we’re off on a trip in a few weeks, and we want everyone happy together in the same home when our friend is housesitting.

Part of the plan is to get the orchard area fenced and ready for the bigger birds to start free ranging in a wider territory.  We picked up fencing materials today and Skipper will try and get things secure tomorrow.  We’re hoping that the next step in integration might be the big birds in the wider world and the little birds free in the coop and run, to get used to the space on their own.  And we also know that if everything is unfamiliar all at the same time for all the birds, they will integrate more easily.  So the more new things we can expose them all to now, the better.

In our big shopping trip, we also picked up his and her trowels (we are so hip and sexy 🙂 ), so we don’t keep fighting for and losing the 1 we have now; I got some schmancy work gloves so that I don’t have to keep wearing through semi-disposable ones, and we picked up a roll of floating row cover at Lee Valley.  Now I had been looking forward to this.  Lee Valley advertises that they sell a 7′ x50′ roll of row cover for about $25.  A steal!  I had planned to get 2-3 rolls so that we can cold frame two of the raised beds and I can put my tomato seedlings out covered before we leave.  This would mean I don’t have to pot up 4 dozen baby tomatoes!  (No, that’s not all of them.  Another story.  I do have fewer than the more than 80 I started last year though.)

Unfortunately, the row cover Lee Valley sells turned out to be the really light stuff that’s great for pest protection over carrots and brassicas (and I still got some to use that way), but it’s not the heavier frost protection type that I’m using at the moment.  We have one bed set up thanks to a big roll we got at Costco last year, and it’s been 25-30 degrees (C) in there most days!  Which is why I wanted to get more and put the tomatoes out.  And all the other garden stores we checked only sold smaller rolls, sometimes for a lot more money.  So on my to do list for Monday is phoning around a bit–there’s an agricultural supply store in town in particular that I’m hoping can get me more for less.  If anyone local has any tips, let me know!

Unfortunately, when we got home, the monkey butlers hadn’t cleaned the house and done the laundry for us. 😦  Don’t you hate it when that happens? (it’s a Simpsons’ joke)  So the day’s not over yet.   But the chicks are curled up asleep upstairs, and the house is warm and quiet, and tomorrow will be a sunny workday outside.  So all’s well in the world for tonight at least.

Pics of all the projects to come tomorrow!

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