Monday, December 15, 2008

morning coffee hot

uncover the garden, cover the garden, uncover the garden, cover the garden
we are in a warm-cool quick-cycle of weather here in central texas. yesterday blessed us with a beautiful day in the mid seventies and today the temperatures are dropping. dropping for central texas that is. we don't experience (fingers crossed) the plummeting sub-zero depths that folks do up north. good thing too because our houses down here are not insulated for such weather. that would be tough. yes, oh there it is, i can hear all the boohoos. i know, i know.

anyway, i was up in the early brisk covering the garden once again after having just lifted the rowcovers several days earlier. the cool air felt wonderful. school buses were traveling by. folks were on their way to work. a local fellow was out for his walk and the wind was blowing hard as i placed veil upon the growing greens. it's good to see the smalltown living in the early hours of the day.

living here is a gift. more hellos, more smiles, more eye contact, more birds, trees, creatures of the universe and a bit of happy smalltown quiet.

i stopped in to check on the wee chicks. ohhh they were chilly, all huddled close to one another. none in danger of perish, not that cold, but cool enough to turn the heat lamps back on. the new bedding of raked up leaves is soft and fluffy and looks to be a good choice. they sink a bit in it, keeping their bodies that tiny bit more warmer. the chickenchica ladies were nesting for the morning eggs. alfie who has dropped off in production was out enjoying the brisk air in the run, scratching and chatting to herself or maybe giving the nesting girls the morning updates. wabbit wabbit was enjoying a morning nibble. he has really warmed up to us folk. he enjoys a scratch and sticks his nose out at you if you offer a bit of conversation. he's a happy clam in his burrow of sorts. the boy kitties once again have opted to stick inside for the morning. they somehow know when the weather turns. on cooler mornings, they curl up, nap and i don't hear a peep from either of them until close to noon. they know a good thing when they've got it.

i''ll keep the holiday lights on today to enjoy while we work inside. a bit of cheer is always sweet.
i think hot coffee this morning
don't you?


3:30pm - woo!

i just got in from ramping up the insulation for the chickenchica's. the wind is screaming out there and the weather folk are reporting a wind chill factor in the teens. i thought best to get on out there and do what i could for the ladies. the target, the chicken wire ceiling above their roosting spot. the goal, keep the heat from rising up and out and chilling the girls at night with the secondary benefit of keeping the coop generally warmer on days such as these.

the easy answer - plastic sheeting and i had plenty of that, but i've read recently that any heavy fabric will hold in heat better than plastic sheeting. all the tarps and drop cloths were already in use. i did not think that my remaining stock of gardener's burlap would do the trick being too porous so i decided to head inside and search around the house for a solution.

i checked out the linen closet. i was thinking that must have some old sheet or blanket that might do the job. what i found was even better. heavy lined shower curtains. the kind that you place in front of the liner to look pretty. these were simple but made of very heavy cloth - perfect!

i got myself dressed up in my "i miss chicago" cold weather gear, grabbed the staple gun, climbed up to the top of the coop, stapled away and within 45 minutes, walla! - chickenchica happiness. and ohhhh, it looked kind of cool - a little coop atmosphere - darling, where are the martinis? i checked inside to make sure that the heat lamp i had set up for the ladies was at a safe distance from the new - roost-o-matic-warmer-upper-cover - "oh plenty of space, rock on!" i did tack up some plastic sheeting in areas that were feeling a little too breezy for comfort. other spots i let be so as to allow good ventilation and healthy air flow. i can now rest easy. it's warm enough, cozy enough and the deep layer of hay on the floor keeps their feets warm too.

and the wee chicks in the shed? doing just fine.
love the chickenchicas - good chickenmama

i'm learning.




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