Sunday, November 23, 2014

Houdini the Cat Explores

My cat thinks he is a panther and has taken to sleeping in the top of the joshua tree in my front  yard. He is like a sentry watching all the birds and chipmunks below. This morning I let the old cat out to get some fresh air and the new cat was in the mood to play tail tag. The old guy is too frail for those kinds of highjinks so I had to bring him back in.

Houdini is such a lap cat. Feral my ass.

Warming up in the sun

He's growing so fast.

Friday, November 21, 2014

November Morning at Shoebox Ranch

Today I took some time to clean up the yard, hang things up that the wind had blown down, play with the chickens, and teach the new kitten how to weave. He really wants to help with everything or nap in my lap so I can't do anything.

As long as it is pleasant out, I can work on my weaving in the yard. That way I can watch the birds and enjoy their songs. Soon it will be too cold to work on crafts in the yard, so I'm enjoying it while I can.
When I see the  horrible snowstorms New York and Canada are having, I feel so blessed to live here. My friend in New York got 8 feet of snow in one night. I guess that's when you find out if you really love your spouse, because you are going to be stuck indoors a lot.

Two fat hens.

Our whole flock in one photo.

This chicken wanted to be picked up this morning.

Impressionistic Weaving of Autumn in the High Desert

Houdini and I

Tricky to hold a chicken and take your own photo.

Houdini is made out of velvet I think.

Why did the chicken cross the hose?

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Building My Outdoor Utopia

Hurry up and get ripe tomato.

Silver Dollar tree for the front yard.
You know I'm new to this whole chicken raising thing. So when the chickens hunkered down for a dust nap, I've seen that before and I wasn't really surprised. But when one red hen started yanking feathers out of the other red hen and eating them, I was a bit taken aback. Then the two black chickens started snacking on feathers too.

Maybe the red one is about to molt and that is how they help out. It seemed that the feathers came out quite easily and didn't seem to hurt her. She hardly seemed to notice. I still found it disturbing. So I googled up some answers. The most common answer is they lack protein. Ours get lots of mealworms so that doesn't seem likely. A few people said the chickens were bored. Ours have full run of a giant yard so I doubt it is boredom. Beats me. Does anyone else have a better answer?

This week I am working in 'Cactus Jack's Garden.' I got the most prickly cactus planted in a hole I dug a long time ago. Today I dug a new hole for the columnar cactus. In one small hole I already dug out about 10 medium and large rocks. My back can only take so much of that so I quit for the day.

There is a sweet spot between the heat of summer and the cold of winter here in the desert so I'm trying to get as much yard work done as I can handle. I just hope the tomatoes ripen before we have a hard freeze.
Happy autumn.

I got a new Silver Dollar eucalyptus tree for the front yard. I can't plant it until I get a tree stake, more potting soil and someone stronger than I am to dig more rocks out of the deep hole. I've wanted one all my life. I just love the leaves. For decades I didn't have my own yard. Technically I'm renting so planting trees here is a bit risky. We hope to buy the place, but lots could happen between now and then. At any rate, I'm living for the moment and planting trees.

In other good news, my bulbs in a container just sprouted. They don't look like ranunculus so they must be the irises.

Cactus Jack's Garden