Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Wandering Wednesday – Funchal, Madeira

Hello Everyone! Today we explore the little city of Funchal on the island of Madeira which is part of Portugal. Madeira is a lovely hilly island covered in greenery, bouganvilla, and blooming tulip trees even in the first week in December.

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  I loved all the black and white designs in the sidewalks and streets. We saw some men working on the boardwalk laying these designs. Each piece is cut and laid by hand. Each lane and plaza had different shapes and patterns.

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I hope you’ve enjoyed Funchal. They had some bad flooding a little while ago. The whole river filled the gully above and overflowed into the streets coming down the mountains. But, don’t let the rain stop you from visiting. It is a beautiful place and don’t forget to pick up some Madeira wine.

Monday, November 28, 2011

Sewing my Little Fingers Off

Hello Everyone! Everything is lovely. I have been spending all my time prepping for my first of two holiday crafts shows that I do every year this Saturday. So posts may be a little thin over the next two weeks. I have to admit it's been hard getting into holiday mode with all of the springish weather. People are putting up decorations in short sleeves and flip flops!

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Wandering Wednesday – Nice, France

Nice is a lovely city on the southern coast of France. We have been there a few times and it’s always beautiful. First we will visit the old city with it’s colorful streets and market. We will then go up the hill to the Matisse museum and it’s charming park and olive grove on a lazy Sunday with the people of Nice.

P1010287  P1010288 P1010290 (2) The seal above the door in the granite reads 1598.


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I hope you’ve enjoyed our visit to Nice. Please join us every Wednesday as we wander to and remember other destinations. December will feature holiday decorations. January and February will feature warm tropical places to escape from the cold New England winter.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Chicken Chat

This weekend we did a lot of work on the chicken house. It’s always been functional, but it needed some prettifying. When it’s done and pretty, I will share. While working the girls are always curious what we are doing. They hang out nearby keeping an eye on us as they nonchalantly dig in the leaves I just raked into the perennial beds.

Baby Persy is getting so big at 12 weeks. She’s almost as big as Nike but she still looks small compared to the behemoth girls Betty and Doris. Those girls make almost any chicken look small. I do have a feeling though, that Persy may end up being close to their size when full grown at the rate she’s going. It could have something to do with the double treat feeding from her two “mom”s



Aphrodite wanted to help rake. She’s been laying an egg everyday. A brown egg, but still and egg which is better than any of the others.





Nike saw I was taking her picture and took off. I guess she wasn’t feeling photogenic. Today she was covered in mud after playing outside in the rain. So at least I got her clean.

I am hoping she will start laying soon. She has been checking out the box.


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I’ve linked up to Ms. Amy’s barn hop

Thursday, November 17, 2011

A Mystery Solved?

Well it had to be one of these two that has now layed three eggs.

P1020449 Nike the Faverolles in the back is supposed to lay a pinky brown egg. Aphrodite in the front is an Easter Egger. She is supposed to lay a green or bluish egg.

So if you got this egg who would you think layed it? Seems obvious right?


Well Wednesday morning I heard a very loud and proud egg song. Running outside to see what the ruckus was about I find this one in the run egg singing her head off louder than I have ever heard her make any sort of noise ever while the rest were out and about. I eagerly look in the egg box. There’s nothing there. That’s right nothing. She was announcing her intention to lay an egg. After a chat with her, she calms down, and goes back in the nest box. A little later before work I looked in and she was still in the nest box. I checked and the twin to the egg above was in the box. She left as soon as I took it. It was like she was keeping it warm for me.

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Yep. That’s right. My only remaining Easter Egger lays brown eggs. Ain’t that a kick in the pants. >sigh< But, I am lucky she has layed anything is the way I look at it. I just really wanted pretty blue/green eggs. I would have been happy with any shade. Maybe next year when Betty goes broody, I’ll get her some Auracana eggs to hatch.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Wandering Wednesday – The Acropolis, Athens

In honor of my little Athena, we are visiting the city of her namesake this week. The story goes that Athena, the goddess of wisdom, and Poseidon, the god of the sea, fought over who would be the patron of the city. Zeus, king of the gods,  decided that each would give a gift to the people of the city and they would decide who they wanted as their patron based on the merit of the gift.

Poseidon struck a rock and produced a spring promising the people would never go thirsty. Unfortunately  the spring was seawater and undrinkable. Athena planted a seed in the ground which sprang into an olive tree promising the people oil, food, and firewood. It was an obvious decision. 

The smog was a bit thick the day we visited. To get to the Acropolis one has to climb a large winding path all the way up the hill. The only picture I have of the Parthenon close up has Husband in it. So you get from afar as we climbed the hill.

P1000153 The Parthenon



The Erecthion

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P1000172 The Thission

Monday, November 14, 2011

The good news is followed by bad…

We lost our sweet Athena today. She would never stay still and look at me at the same time. But I really loved her feathering. She was so pretty. This is the last one I got of her.


The day before yesterday we noticed chewed holes in the lattice on the side of the run that faces the road. It is outside the chicken wire. We use it as a screening. I at first thought it was some sort of rodent. Then I noticed it was in places the chickens could reach it. The run is three years old. None of the chickens have ever tried to eat the wood before.

P1000510 8 weeks

I am not surprised though. Chickens will eat almost anything. They attacked the floatie noodle around my clam basket once and there were little blue pieces of foam all over the back yard. They haven’t touched it since or until up to that point.

P1000386awkward teenage look

In any case, yesterday I noticed that Athena was moving a little slower than usual. She’s a spaz and usually all over the place. I figured she was the wood eater and hoped she was just having a tough time digesting. I gave her some olive oil and vitamins and hoped that would help her tummy. Today she was worse, but I was still hopeful as I gave her more vitamins and olive oil this morning before I left for work. I put her in the house with food and water nearby. By this afternoon she was gone. Husband buried her in what is beginning to be our chicken graveyard with her dear departed friends.

To prevent this happening again, I am going to put hardware cloth over that side so they can’t reach the lattice. I don’t think anyone else was involved. Anything could have happened in her digestive system to kill her, I don’t know how big or sharp the pieces were. Or even if the lattice had been pressure treated with any chemicals. It was reused from elsewhere. I am feeling like a bad mom and that I just can’t take any more chicken deaths. I know chickens will eat anything. I know they are not the brightest bulbs. I baby them and love them so. I wish I could have prevented and foreseen this one. All I can do is prevent it from happening to the others. 

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Finally! An egg

Nike laid an egg! Nike laid an egg! The wait has been dreadful. I thought I could handle it, but with the two big girls not laying and me having to go buy eggs last week, it was starting to feel like it would never happen and my chickens were just enjoying being layabouts. I am 95% sure it was Nike. It’s definitely a pullet egg and the other two are Easter Eggers. The EEs should and lay green or bluish eggs. But, brownish has been known to happen. The EEs are a week older than Nike who is about 27 weeks. Yes that 6.5 months!

P1020416 Last week. Her comb is much redder now.

Also, she came running over from the back yard when I came out so proud of herself as if to tell me “Go look what I did!” 

P1020564Please pardon all the lumber, I am shingling the chicken coop. I’ll let you see when it’s done.


Maybe the other girls will get the hint now.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Fun Night Out


Last night across the country, the classic movie channel TCM presented West Side Story in movie theaters to celebrate it’s 50th anniversary. I went with my sister who lives in Boston. We splurged for the almost 3 hour event by reserving tickets to the big cushy seats in the back of the theater.

It was really an experience. They had an interview that they played before the actual movie with the director, the man who played Bernardo, and the woman that sang for Natalie Wood. Then the movie itself on the big screen was beautiful. You watch these classic movies over and over on tv, but there is nothing like seeing them as they were meant on the big screen. It was complimented with cocktail and food service to our cushy seats. It was an extremely enjoyable night.

I didn’t even mind getting up at 5am this morning to make it to work on time :)

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Wandering Wednesday – Genoa (Genova), Italy

Italy had some horrible rains and flooding this week. One of the hardest hit cities was Genoa. This made me think of our visit last fall to this interesting old old city with it’s winding little streets and new things around every corner.

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At the top of a long alley full of friendly young ladies working in the oldest profession, we found that it ended at the city municipal offices. How convenient for them.

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Even if you don’t speak Italian, you can tell what the sign says.

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The church used to pilfer temples and other building for the marble. Look closely and you can see the carvings on the pieces from their original homes.

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There is also a lovely waterfront. I hope you enjoyed Genoa and keep them in your thoughts this week.

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