September 28, 2012

Last week officially marked the end of summer and the beginning of fall here in California, although you truly wouldn’t know it where I’m at. Ninety something degrees of hot post-summer sun is beating down on my little house, continuing to dehydrate my lawn & tempt my finger to flip on the A/C. Hasn’t happened yet, I’m holding strong.

I think it goes without saying that this week has been a rough one for me. Although grandpa’s passing was no surprise, I still feel the loss so much deeper than I realized I would. Of course I should have the relief of him finally being released from his worn-out body, but the selfish side of me just isn’t ready to accept that he’s gone. But as I said before, he would see absolutely no reason for all this belly-achin’ over an old farm boy who passed away after 98 great years. So I’ve done my best today to enjoy the loveliness around my cute (if not sweltering hot) little home.

“Feel better” flowers – I do love dahlia season

 These are my three chickens, or as I refer to them: Backyard Terrorists.

Hop, Scramble, and June, who all waddled off 2 seconds later, realizing there were no treats.

The white chicken (June) and the smaller darker red chicken (Hop) are the replacement hens that we bought after our beloved Omelet & Quiche died back in June. I don’t care what anyone says, or how miniscule chicken brains must be, these gals have hilarious personalities, and they know where the treats come from. They never cease to make me laugh. A sprinting chicken is a sight to behold- like an over stuffed football held up by toothpick legs- not a creature designed for running. And I know it seems crazy that we bought two new hens just a few months before moving out of the country, but I couldn’t bear to see Scramble so lonely… she would just stand in the middle of the lawn squawking at the top of her lungs looking for her old pals. It was enough to melt even Scott’s icy chicken-wary heart, and after I read literature about how a hen will die if she’s all alone (flock animal mentality), he let me get two more.

Right before June charged the camera, trying to see if the shiny bits were edible.

Scramble looking quite demure, Hop doing what she does best.

The problem with having three chickens, is that you multiply the chicken demolition squad by three. Three beaks pecking your precious garden fruits and vegetables. Six feet scratching apart the lawn and the fresh fruit vines. Three fuzzy butts depositing bare-foot landmines all over the yard. Don’t get me wrong, I obviously love having the ladies or we wouldn’t have them. But they come with their price.

Massive anti-terrorist fence around tomatoes, watermelon, and peppers.

Our only cantaloupe on the whole vine, demolished by three greedy girls.

Of course, the upside (besides the hilarity of these silly, friendly, curious creatures): fresh eggs – 3 every day! We’re lucky to frequently be able to make breakfast together… yes, the original three were aptly named, Scramble, Omelet, & Quiche. Our cholesterol has never been so high!

Hard to believe those silly squawking creatures make such beautiful brown eggs.

In the spirit of enjoying my backyard farm, I also took a picture of my only prize pumpkin. Last year the backyard terrorists annihilated the pumpkin vine before it could grow a decent squash, and they nearly succeeded in all devastation again this year, but one fruit survived and became twice their size.

My homegrown 16 lb. pumpkin, proudly displayed on the porch.

I love autumn, but like most, I’m not particularly looking forward to winter. So with any luck, Scott & I will be in New Zealand by the end of 2012, which should be just around the end of fall. Unfortunately we’ll miss springtime in NZ, but I have to say, I’m not too broken-hearted about having a summer-fall-summer-fall pattern this year. Regardless, here’s a few pics of what we’re currently missing out on, as late September correlates with late March down under.

Meadow among the mountains of the South Island

Mount Cook in the springtime

The best part of spring in NZ- baby lambs! If I got Scott talked into chickens, these should be easy, right???

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  • Reply Anonymous October 2, 2012 at 3:27 pm

    Lambs huh?! You are gonna have to be pretty darn nice to Scott!

  • Reply Lori October 3, 2012 at 1:22 am

    I’m not a huge chicken person, but I know i’d enjoy watching them run around your backyard. My parents had chickens (as pets only) and they kept telling me how dumb they were, but entertaining .. .until my dad threw them over the zoo fence. I hope they survived. 🙂

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