We are sorry to report that our dear Koa Hen passed away. We saw she was unwell, and did all we could to relieve her, but other than being incredibly listless, there was no clear cause for her droopy and quiet mood. Even the healing epsom salt spa treatment gave no relief. We isolated Koa, and some time in the night, she passed. It was fast, and that's a comfort. The other hens don't seem to be ill, or exhibiting anything alarming. Koa, with her darling white feathered beard, is missed. Sigh.
Can you see there is extra activity on the farm? Lumber, paint, power tools, sawdust, and plans. Lots and lots of plans. I am coming to anticipate spring for these amazing projects that are accomplished. Barns, runs, seesaws, and robots... all the plans and ideas we develop through the winter, suddenly take form in the spring. It's grand!
Every afternoon the hens burst from their enclosure, and out into the yard. The whole free-ranging yard, and the porch, and the garden beds. It's a happy sight, and a disaster! We have a poop deck for a porch, and the Swiss chard was decimated. Mako is the only one to enjoy strawberries, and she loves digging up carrots. Our lawn? It looks like the site of a great archeological dig, thanks to dust bathing hens. Happily, phase II of Camp-Whoop-Up is in full swing: We are fencing a section of the yard, where hens can have their freedom, and we can have a cleaner porch, and Swiss chard! It's a simple and effective plan, and we don't lose any space, it's only that we can control traffic flow. Goats, too will enjoy more frequent roaming opportunities! The five foot high fence is covered in a large mesh welded wire, practically a passive barrier compared with the wire covering the enclosure, but sufficient for keeping everyone in their zones. Geoff is framing one of the two gates... we may be putting it to the test by this afternoon.
The other project is one I am not going to tell you about. It's a secret. A good one, I think. Alex, Maria, and William have been helping me bring my vision to life, by cutting, painting, and adding to a thrift shop cabinet... we are converting it, and I promise to share the results, soon. Last night I sat on the porch and sanded the door, with my chicas, milling about. Those girls make even tedious chores a pleasure when they keep me company.
The weather has been like the height of summer... hot. Happy news for the garden, and our confused Jacaranda, which is blooming like it's June. It cooled the last few days, and I wish I could say it will stay this way through August. Bunnies, goats, chickens, children, and flowers... we are all happier in mild weather, and without fire watches and high wind advisories.
I deliberately put on painting clothes when I got up this morning. Seems I am actually an incredibly messy painter! No matter. It's time to get back to the projects, to be working side-by-side with my sweetheart.