In gratitude for what I have

Aaahhh… minivacation.

I have the next few days off from the school, which is good because I don’t think I would have done well if I’d had to stay many more days at a stretch. Whoever decided that it was a good idea to let those kids have movies and popcorn on the last few hours of the last day before break clearly didn’t think things through. It was madness.

But it’s done for a few days. I won’t be doing the black friday bullshit, so I get a nice long relaxing break. In theory.

In reality, I’ll probably be running errands, working around the house, and taking care of a dozen little jobs that have been slipping. I need to clear out the last of the vegetation from the garden beds, for example. The solid frost we had last night went and killed the last of it. I was kind of hoping the frost would wait a few more nights for the last few almost-ripe tomatoes, but it just wasn’t to be. Goats will be happy with the scraps. Chickens too, for that matter.

Did you know that a dozen happy Wyandotte hens will lay 4-10 eggs a day even in late November? I didn’t either, and I knew that they were reputed to be good layers. I will probably go looking for more when it’s time to add another cohort to the flock. These birds are alright. They’re fantastic foragers and they blend in beautifully with the ground. They’re also clever at listening to the crows and running for cover every time a crow squawks, since the crows always yell obscenities at the raptors. Definitely want more of this kind of hen.

And I got two new little does to add to the herd. I went all the way down to North Carolina for them, but I think they will be worth it. They are BoKis, just like the big mamas I have now. Their mama was on the site and that doe is as tall at the shoulder as my buck. I sincerely hope she passes on that size to her girls. They aren’t done growing yet. Still, they’re old enough to breed, because you can do that with goats. I wasn’t sure if I was going to try this year or not, but they let me know right away. As soon as I got them off the truck the slightly larger of the two took a good sniff of Grinder and promptly presented her tail to him. I think they’re old enough.

The big does are due sometime the beginning of December. I’ll have four-month old kids by Easter and I figure that if I can’t sell four-month old kids for Paschal-Feast then I probably don’t belong in the business.

Tonight I’ll have a few folks down to the cabin and we’ll pour out a toast to the land spirit in thanks for a good season, and a safe, productive winter to come. I built it a little stone pile surrounded by white pines near the garden, where the energy seems to be sort of concentrated. The top stone has some natural divots in it which should hold offering just fine.

In the spirit of the season I wish you a blessed holiday. May you be reminded of where true value lies, and may your heart open to receive it. May the cold bring clarity, and your dreams manifest. No, it’s not a particularly warm and fuzzy blessing, but it’s the most real one I can offer. May you be well.

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5 thoughts on “In gratitude for what I have

  1. Sand down putty, finish painting and staining, caulk all the chinks, and maybe get the new flooring laid in at the cottage, then there is vehicle maintenance and clearing of brush around the property to do. At least some errands can be relaxing in a ‘look what finally got done’ sort of way yeah? We’d been looking at Dominiques but it’s always good to hear positive reports on different chicken breeds since we aren’t set on which ones to get yet.

    It was a good blessing, may it be returned to you and yours.

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    • Ah yes, thank you for reminding me. I need to change the oil in my truck some time this weekend. I looked at Domoniques but decided that the Wyandottes were a better gamble because of their initial purchase cost. At least here, they were relatively cheap. Being able to blend in and hide from predators was also a big decision-maker, since we have an overabundance of such beauties as Red Tailed Hawks, Bald Eagles, Osprey,Peregrines, Sharpshinned Hawks, Harrier Hawks and I think we’ve seen Goshawks a bit further inland. Best of luck with whatever you decide to get, though. There’s nothing like a flock of chickens to keep you entertained, fed, and take care of your table scraps.

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  2. I rather like that blessing. Perhaps I like realistic blessings. Thank you.

    It actually reads like you are being blessed with a break from children, good livestock, and good fellowship. While things are never perfect for any of us, there has been a marked (and positive) difference in your posts since you changed the path you walk. I am very happy about this for you. In turn, I think it is a realistic blessing to hope this continues for you. Blessed be.

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    • Thank you. In the interest of full disclosure, there’s quite a bit that’s not making it into regular posts. My housemate is driving me crazy, most of my mom’s family can suck poison and die for all I care at this point, it’s really not any different than it was before. I think I’m just getting better at filtering it out. Still, it’s an improvement.

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