Craft Hope Update and New Projects

Back in February, my Saturday crafty group of friends made 10 delivery kits to send to Konbit Sante as part of Craft Hope‘s Project 11.  Craft Hope recently posted an update that showed all the boxes in the Konbit Sante warehouse of the 2,510 delivery kits that were received and will soon be making their way to Haiti to save the lives of mamas and babies.  Check out the amazing-ness of all of those boxes!  I am so proud to have been able to be a part of such an effort.  But, it doesn’t end there!

Craft Hope recently announced Project 12 which is to make handmade bracelets for orphans in Russia.  Then, due to the recent tornadoes in the South, they also announced a Project 13 which is to provide blankets to survivors of the tornadoes.  Join in!  The deadline for both projects is June 15th, and all the details can be found on the Craft Hope website.

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Chicken update

Hullloooo!

Well, the chickens are growing by leaps and bounds!  Flo, the barred rock, is 2.5 weeks old, and the 3 golden comets are 1.5 weeks old.  Flo is already getting huge!  Barred rocks are large hens, weighing 7-8 pounds.  Golden comets are only 5-6 pounds, so that probably accounts for the fact that Flo looks three times as large!  We will be getting two more golden comet chicks tomorrow, and that will round out the flock to six. Hopefully the new babies will be as easily integrated with the older ones as the last set.

Whatcha' doin'?

Flo has been trying to fly out of the box that they are currently housed in, so I will be making some changes today before the two new babies arrive.  The box is currently in our big dog crate, so I’m going to pull the box out, and put the chicks straight into the crate.  The crate is nice because it gives a really easy place to hang the brooding lamp (which keeps them warm).  I will be putting up a wall of cardboard around the inside walls of the crate though to keep the mess down, and to prevent them from trying to push through.  Also helps keep away drafts and keep it warm, of course.

Work on the coop begins this weekend!  We have it all planned out, and the hubby just needs to figure out some more exact measurements so he knows how much wood to buy.  It’s going to be about a 4′ x 6′ coop with a 12′ x 6′ attached run.  Roof over the entire thing for shade and to keep snow out of the run.  The coop is going to be raised up 2 feet off the ground so there will be run space underneath as well.  We need to figure out exactly how we are going to protect the bottom from predators.  Some variation of hardware cloth, but we haven’t figure out what exactly.  I think maybe straight down into a trench to protect from digging predators.  We are going to place it here in our cleared garden bed.

Future home of chicken coop

I need to make some important design decisions while the hubby works on the construction details…..like what color to paint it!  That is going to be my job.  You can see all my chicken coop inspiration on Pinterest.

Welcome Flo!

We have been very busy here, so not a lot of crafting has been going on.  It is Spring (hooray!) and we have been spending our time in our garden/yard, cleaning up from winter and getting ready for spring planting.  More on that later, but I need to introduce you to the newest member of our family, Flo, our new barred rock chick!  The boys named her Flo because she was born on Gramma Flo’s birthday.

Hello Flo!

Unfortunately, Flo had a sister that didn’t make it.  We picked them up on Thursday and both seemed fine.  But by Saturday, the other one wasn’t doing well at all. She wasn’t walking, and everything that I could find on the net just didn’t seem like what it was.  We lost her Saturday night, and it upset the kids quite a bit.  But they have recovered and are looking forward to three more new chicks (Golden Comets) arriving on Tues/Wed of this week.  None too soon either because Flo is pretty sad without a companion.  We gave her a little stuffed animal to make her feel better and that actually seems to be working really well.

It was not the plan to only get two.  We had our order placed for two barred rocks and two golden comets.  But, the farm store ended up getting  their orders at different times, so the other two golden comets aren’t arriving for another week and a half.  So, I spent this morning calling around and finding someone who had chicks for sale this week so Flo wouldn’t have to be lonely for too long.  Thankfully I found some!  We’ll be picking up three golden comets on Tuesday or Wednesday, and if all goes well, we’ll end up with a total of six.

More on the chicken adventure to come!  Hubby is building a coop/run in the back yard!

Spring = Fiddleheads

I had never heard of fiddleheads before moving to Maine. Fiddleheads grow on the sides of streams in our area. They are the unfurled fronds of a young ostrich fern.  People in the know will go out to their favorite places and pick them.   You will find people selling them on their front lawns for about $2.50/$3 a bag, which is usually about a pound.  They were $4.99/pound in the local grocery store.  Here’s a good link from the University of Maine Extension that shows pictures and a video on how to identify an ostrich fern fiddlehead.  You don’t want to pick the other ones by accident, because they are carcinogenic!

For example, these are NOT edible fiddleheads, but they are growing in our backyard swampy area.  If picking fiddleheads, you want to avoid these furry looking ones.  Not for eating!  But, they are pretty, and lovely later in the year when they turn into ferns.

Furry = Not edible!

We had dinner out tonight, and fiddleheads were on the veggie sides menu, so of course I had to choose them!  The first spring veggie of the year.  It’s a momentous occasion after a long winter.  They were done really well.  When we have them at home (after purchasing from someone on the roadside usually), we just saute them with some butter.  Mmm…a little bit bitter, but they have a wonderful spring flavor.