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Wednesday, July 29, 2020

Rhode Island Reds

Let's talk chickens!







Specifically, let's talk about the glorious Rhode Island Reds(RIR).
I will start by saying that I am completely biased toward these beautiful girls(in my case).
Although the roosters can be gorgeous!

I have always been drawn to their beauty and have wanted to get my own for years.
I did all my research.
The things I needed to consider for my breed of choice ended up being a relatively short list but very important.

1. I absolutely had to have a breed that is kid-friendly, docile, and wouldn't have me running scared away from the coop door!
RIRs are known to be just that. Docile with huge personalities. Each one is different. I have four and they are everything from timid, flighty, comical, sassy, to big babies.

2. I wanted a bird that wouldn't be sick more than it was healthy. Since these would be my first chickens, I wanted something I wasn't going to be spending thousands on in vet bills or more trying to put myself through veterinarian school specializing in avian-ology(is that a thing?)
RIRs are known as an A+ health breed. Most live completely healthy lives without any issues. 
Of course, that means that they have a safe, clean, and adequate living space.
Their life span is 7-8 years!

3. EGGS!
Yes, I wanted eggs. and, lots of them!
Again, with it being my first go at this, I do not intend to use them as meat birds.
Although they are categorized as dual purpose. Tri-purpose if you consider eggs, meat, pets.

4. Weather hardy
We live in Ohio.
We have hot, humid summers and can get frigid winters.
I chose chooks that could live healthily without me having to redesign their coop with the changing seasons.
RIRs do well in both climates. Their large combs help them release heat in the hot months, while their size helps them maintain their body heat in cold months.

5. I wanted pretty birds!
I admit I was drawn to these chickens first by their appearance. They are gorgeous!
They can come in a variety of "reds". Everything from a light rust color to the deep mahogany.
I have four, from the same hatchery. All hatched on the same day and I can tell them apart just by their feathers and coloring.

These were my top 5 reasons I chose the Rhode Island Reds.
They are only about 4 months old and no eggs just quite yet, but I am so pleased with them and definitely will add more when space permits it.

Here are some facts to read up on.

Rhode Island Red

Purpose-Dual

Eggs- Large Brown

Production-200-280/year

Broody- not typical but can be

Weight- roosters 7.5lbs  hens 5.5lbs

Temperament-hens calm/docile  roosters can be aggressive

Life span-7-8 years

Class/Type- American/Large Fowl

Varieties-single or rose comb

Rarity-On Watch(less than 2,500 registered in the United States)

Here is a great article to get more information

You can also find a ton of products and even order your own chickens from Tractor Supply Company

I hope this information helps you decide if this breed is right for you.
I chose them and am 100% pleased. If you have any questions, just ask.
Now for their photoshoot! Enjoy!









Monday, July 27, 2020

Crochet Summer Tank Top

Crochet Summer Tank Top
(pattern link included)

Hey Y'all!

I hope everyone is enjoying their summer! As much as we can with COVID19 hovering over!
I'm not going to elaborate ANY on that subject. Let's just say, it was acknowledged and move on. Besides, this is a crochet post, right?
Right!

So, who is ready for this super fun and easy project?
That is totally wearable!

I actually made this one a few months ago.
I just seemed to be busy doing the usual 1,000 other things and this post got pushed aside.
No worries.
Thanks to me visiting, revisiting, and re revisiting...(you get it), my amazing Pinterest board full of ideas and patterns I spotted this one and decided to get it posted!

Breann over @Hooked on Homemade Happiness has a ton of amazing crochet projects.
Great patterns and easy instructions.
All creds go to her!


I loved this pattern, but I wanted to do my own colors.
I decided not to label this post "Ombre" tank because:
1. Breann already claimed that
2. I didn't follow her color pattern

I think it still turned out pretty well and I love it.!
She has written out an easy to follow pattern in sizes S, M, and L
I used the size small pattern.
I am 5'0" and 115lbs.

Don't forget to jump over and let Breann know if you use this pattern.
I hope you enjoy!
Happy Crocheting!





Tuesday, July 7, 2020

Our Little Backyard Homestead

Welcome!

I have been wanting to write this post for a few years now.
So, I am just going to jump in and get it going. We'll figure out together where it will end!

Meet the family and our back story:

My husband and I have 3 daughters and now 1 granddaughter.
We have been married 23 years next month.
Our life together has been full of hopes, dreams, wishes, prayers, and so, so many blessings!
One of our dreams and goals is to have our own farm!
That isn't exactly an easy goal. It wasn't something either of us even talked about or considered when we first met. We didn't even know how badly we wanted it until about 10 years ago.

We come from completely different backgrounds.

 He was an Air Force brat, moving all over the country, on base, off base, in many different environments. He was the city kid, the jock. He also was raised to buy new. the newest, best, biggest.
Why fix it when you can just go get a new....whatever?(Except for cars)
I still haven't figured that one out. LOL

I was raised in the same house my entire life. I went to the same school up until 10th grade.
Although, I too was raised in the city, I came from the country(not the south) and YES, there is a difference!
I spend every summer in Kentucky. I was raised to save, reuse, recycle, and nothing goes to waste.
"Waste not, want not"~Darrell Halcomb

One thing my husband and I have learned is that we make an amazing team.
There is plenty of giving and taking.
We both have a great list of skills under our belts to actually make our dream lifestyle workable.
It has been a learning and growing process.
We don't have all the answers and we too are learning every day.

Jumping along...I'm not the novelist in the family.


Here we are today.

We are enjoying our "micro backyard homestead"
While we are hunting for our own home, we are using what we have.
We have a garden.
We have our chickens.
We are learning more about reusing materials we have and are actively preparing to can and preserve what we grow(and buy)
Hard work, education, budgeting, and faith are where we are right now.
For us, it is a huge step.
I'm not saying we are going to move off-grid or be super self-sufficient, but we are making our lives better for us.
It definitely is a family "business".
All hands on deck

We live with .16 acres!
That is point 1/6 of an acre
in the city(yea...that is a whole other post)

Our garden is roughly 15ft x8ft
We also have a lettuce bed/box for greens and salads
and tons of pots(or coffee cans) for herbs and extra plants

Our chicken coop and run is 8ft x 4ft and houses our 7 pullets
plus the "infirmary" that is a dog cage(2ft x4ft)

We have about 100 jars for canning in our cold cellar room, some full, some ready to be filled.

A few of our other skills include:
car mechanics
woodworking
carpentry
plumbing(learn as you go..I mean grow)
small electric
budgeting(extremely)
crochet
sewing
landscaping(not so much me)..I fear the weed eater like the plague!
cooking
candle making
and we can add Avian vet to our list of skills! LOL
ok, may be not yet.

We have some great kids who are privileged to join us on the adventures.
We do make them work hard!
We also let them play because your "homestead" should always be enjoyed!

So, whatever you choose to call it, homesteading, backyard gardening, micro-farming, living semi-off-grid
We love it!
We are continuing to grow and be blessed every day!
I hope you will keep visiting and enjoy in watching our adventures and our family grow!








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