Saturday, October 29, 2011

Friday, October 28, 2011

Jack 2.0

Things just were not the same out in the old animal pen since our beloved rabbit Jack passed away last month. Although, Jack will always be the king of our homestead, we adopted a new male bunny this afternoon. He's was advertised as a Holland Lop but I have my doubts, as they're supposed to be tiny and this guy isn't so much. No worries he's a handsome little man none-the-less.

His birthday is July 17, 2011, so he's still a young'n. He has BIG rabbits feet to fill but no pressure. The lady rabbits seem to approve and he's already settled into his new cage just fine. Several names have been tossed around, i.e. Gordon, Mark, Louis and even Tim Thomas (the Boston Bruins goaltender for those of you who are clueless, which is unacceptable by the way!). Until he is officially named I will be referring to him as "Jack 2.0".

Oh, he was also introduced to Trixie. Not so sure "Jack 2.0" enjoyed his initial meeting but I understand completely, after all how much fun can it be having your ear bitten, chewed and pulled by a dog that's smaller than you?! This bullying thing is getting out of hand...

Anyway, welcome to the ole homestead Jack 2.0!

First Snow Fall of the Season :-(

We had our first snow fall of the season last night, ugh! 32 degrees on the nose this morning according to our thermometer, brr! Too soon, way to soon for sure - it's still only October. Just hope it's not a sign of things to come. Here are some of our Halloween decorations with their snow hats on, kinda cool...

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Our Orpington Flock of Ladies

Check out the little ladies! Are these not a good looking flock of Buff Orpintgon pullets? They have a wonderful disposition and very friendly too. They're closing in on six months old and should begin laying soon, which we'll welcome as the older hens have all but stopped ever since the cold weather has begun to move in - if we're lucky we get one egg every couple of days.

New But No New...

I replaced our chickens homemade milk crate nest boxes yesterday with real nest boxes. The homemade nests worked out just fine for many years. The real nest boxes had been hanging in the old, empty chicken pen at my dads house and I finally got around to moving them here.

I built some new roosts for the ladies to fly up on and hung it. Will be heading to the feed store this morning to pick up a bail of hay, which I need to the rabbits with winter approaching and will also use some to line the new nest boxes.

The pictures below are not the prettiest but then again I'm talking about a chicken coop, so it's to be expected.

Before -

After -

For anyone interested, I have two used milk crate nest boxes available...

Surprise Surprise!

Our Bell Pepper 2011 harvest

Well, as it turns out our 12 pepper plants weren't as dead-beat as I thought. While getting all our flower beds ready for winter yesterday, by cutting and pulls this past summers growth, I came across these three tiny peppers. I had given up on them a while ago and with them hidden behind the begonias, that did fantastic growing in the same bed as the peppers, I'd forgotten about them. Much to my surprise these littlen's were waiting for me when I pulled the plants, so our 2011 peppers were not a total bust.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Our October 2011 Visitors

We're always having wildlife stopping in or passing by throughout the year for a visit with this October being one of the busier months. Not pictured was a beautiful Red Fox that crossed the road and ran through the yard. I was simply too slow to get a pic, alas.

Here is a VERY handsome Tom! Notice his "brush"?! -

A mother and (2) baby White-Tailed deer. They were enjoying the Wild Garlic plants that are taking over and stayed around for quite some time -

Here are (6) absolutely stunning Blue Birds, WOW! There were many more and all just hanging out, perhaps taking a break from wherever they're heading to but always welcome -


1968 vintage Pressman Tri-Ominos

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Probably Need My Head Examined, Yes!?!?

Please put your hands together for a BIG round of applause and warm welcome for the newest member of our Lincoln Street menagerie, Trixie*!!

Trixie is an 9-week old Blue Merle Chihuahua, which is a dog for those of you unsure.

Certainly not what you'd expect to find running around at my place but a father's love for his daughter far out weighs his selfishness to fight for a manly-mans dog.

The look on Emilie's face when JoAnne revealed the puppy was priceless! Definitely brought a tear to my eyes. Needless to say Emilie is in her glory and on top of the world. We just need to make sure Emilie grandma doesn't try to take Trixie home with her when she comes up for a visit. She is a Chihuahua fan, ugh, go figure...

*Her name is still yet to be decided but the majority are leaning towards Trixie...

Icelandic Lamb Has Arrived, YUMMY!

Iceland and Whole Foods Market bring you, exclusively, Icelandic Lamb, which is only available from September through early December, and not in all Whole Foods Market. The good news is that our Whole Foods Market DOES indeed carry it, OH LA LA! I would also be remiss if I didn't give kudos to my co-worker Vladimir B., who turned us on to this delicacy!!

Here's an explanation I came across -

‘Much of Iceland's lamb production is simply based on harvesting the bounties of nature. The use of hormones as growth promoters is strictly prohibited and antibiotics are banned as a feed additive. The Icelandic climate, unpolluted air and abundant supply of clean mountain water makes the use of pesticides and herbicides unnecessary. Iceland's’ climate protects the land against plant diseases, insects and other pests which plague agriculture in warmer latitudes.

Thanks to its geographical isolation and stringent agricultural regulations that control the import of live animals, many common animal diseases are unknown in Iceland.

Choice lambs born in the spring spend the summer grazing freely in the fresh air of Iceland's’ highland pastures. Icelandic lamb is reared entirely outdoors and its natural pasture diet includes sedge, willow, thrift. moss campion and berries. This unique blend makes Icelandic lamb instantly recognizable for its delicious and distinctive taste.

No Antibiotics
No Hormone Implants as growth promoters
No Parasiticides
No Pesticides
No Herbicides

JoAnne picked up some chops and loins, which are chill'n in the freezer. We're thinking about stopping in, at least once more, to pick up more. Can't wait to sink my teeth into some tasty Icelandic lamb, baaaaaaaaaa!

Monday, October 17, 2011

I Think I Can, I Think I Can, I Think I Can...

I took advantage of the fabulous fall weekend we just had and got quite a bit taken care of in our yard, as well as in my dads yard.

Saturday was spent in Westwood cutting grass as usual but also cleaning gardens, yippee - removed the metal tomato stakes and put in storage, pulled all the dead, dried vegetable plants and weeds, cut and removed all over grown weeds, i.e. Goldenrod, and small trees growing on the rock garden. Also weed-whacked all gardens and yard. Plus put a couple trash barrels curbside with "stuff" inside to be removed - let's hope they take it all. Oh, and let's hope the house sells soon too! This taking care of multiple properties is for the birds!

Upon my return home Saturday afternoon I had just enough umph to cut my own lawn and then put down a 15k bag of Winterizer fertilizer with weed killer of course. Got everything done and put away just after dark.

Sunday afternoon was spent in our gardens pulling dead tomato and squash plants, removing and cleaning tomato cages and turning the soil, ugh. Finished off by planting 3lbs of Winter Rye in the various gardens. Got everything done, put away and showered in time to watch the Patriots beat the Cowboys, hooray, and then relax with the family.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

The Great Flood of October 1, 2011

So, we've had some excitement, water excitement actually, back on October 1! Our washing machine decided to go-on-the-fritz, and by this I mean that the machine never stopped filling with water, OH NO! Naturally, the machine only holds so much water, so the rest came out and came out and came out and came out...

What alerted us to this catastrophe was the basement smoke detector started going off. When JoAnne went down to investigate (I wasn't going down there) she was greeted with water pouring from dozens upon dozens of ceiling nooks and crannies. The water was running through and out of the smoke detector, which thankful set it off and alerted us to the problem.

We, along with help from our neighbor, eventually cleaned everything up that night. Now, when I called our insurance company to open a claim another type of flood began. They immediately dispatched a cleaning and restoration company called ServiceMASTER.

and boy oh boy did they arrive -

In the basement they removed ALL the ceiling insulation in half the basement; the half under the kitchen and bathroom. The also remove the top half of the sheetrock on the outside back wall and the insulation behind it. Three locations had already begun growing mold, which they sprayed and treated. Then came in the industrial equipment: (4) blowers and (2) dehumidifiers. These ran full time from Friday afternoon till Sunday morning, see below -

The kitchen and bathroom had the baseboard trim removed and 1" holes drilled into the walls to allow air flow. The refrigerator was pulled out and the same was done behind it. Then (5) industrial fans and (1) hugh dehumidifier was installed, and again ran from Friday afternoon until Sunday morning. The noise was deafening. You literally couldn't hear yourself think, see below -

The good news is that we're 100% dry, so there's not worry about mold. The bad news is that the basement ceiling and walls need new insulation installed and the sheetrock re-hung. The weather is changing fast and getting colder as each day passes, so the timing isn't the best.

We're in a holding pattern until we hear back from our insurance assessor but all in all things moved pretty fast.

Greggie Got's a BooBoo...

I came across this 1974 relic while going through the boxes of "stuff", that have been relocated to my house, from my folks attic. 40+ years of accumulated "stuff", yippie!

Apparently, back in July of 1974 by brother had a need for five stitches over his left eye. Hmm, poor kid. Since I can't remember last week there is NO way I recall what happened back on 7/22/74. I can only assume that I had nothing to do with it...

By the way were only three stitches in the jar when I opened it. You can see two stuck to the lid.

My mother wrote the following note on a tissue that reads, "Greg Tues July 22, 74 (5) over left eye"

Boy will he be surprised when this jar arrives in the mail - SURPRISE!

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Spirograph Set

1967 original Spirograph set by Kenner

Oh Yeah! Whole Grain Cheez-IT's!

Look what I happened across at a Target in Fairfield Connecticut - WHOLE GRAIN Cheez-IT's!! Please forgive me for including a picture of my finger but I was just too excited and salivating dah!

So, perhaps these delicious snack treats aren't that bad after all!

I'm thinking some of these bad boys washed down with a frosty, cold beer on football Sundays - Go PATS!

Now, just need to see if theses tasty vittles are carried around these parts...

Dutch Bulbs by van Bourgodien

Bought and planted me some Daffodil and Tulip bulbs - 36 bulbs (18) of each kind. Only time will tell how well they do but we'll know for sure come Spring one way or another.

Double-mixed Tulips -

Apple Blossom-mixed Tulips -