Thursday, March 31, 2011

Hanging with the Chickens

Yesterday it got a little too quiet in the house and any mom will say, "when it is quiet...the kids are probably getting into something". :) So I went outside to investigate and came out to find two of them in the chicken coop just hanging out.


Dylan found a nice comfy seat inside the bin where we keep the chicken food, just hanging out playing the "chop chop ninja" game on my phone. Isabelle was just hanging out putting food in the red cup and spreading it out for the chickens to eat. Dylan just loves being around the chickens he said he wanted to just hang out with them for awhile. :)


Soon the chickens wanted to check out what he was up to,

so one decided to jump up and take a look.

So of course he had to take a break from his game and give her a nice little pet on her back. :)

We are usually getting 5 eggs a day now. They are so much fun!

Here is a current picture of my garden. Things are sprouting up all over and growing great. I had to do some soil modification...because all my first sprouts were dying off. My soil had too much nitrate in it...hopefully now it will do better and we'll get lots of great stuff!

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Train Park

Yesterday for Grandma day we went to the train park in Scottsdale.

It was Isabelle's first time to ride on the carousel without freaking out. She wasn't so sure at first if she liked it but a few times around and she started waving to me as she went by. :)

All the girls, including my niece Janae had a great time on the playground.


It was great to enjoy the outdoors before it gets too hot.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Love

Mark captured these series of photo's on our trip to Durango.

They were taken outside the train museum.

I love, love, love them!






Saturday, March 26, 2011

Who's ready for a treat?

Looks like spaghetti & meatballs, right? Nope, it is a amazing cake! My client made me this cake to enjoy with the kids. She is so talented and it tasted so good!!

I wanted to surprise the kids with the cake and capture what they thought about it. We just got done with dinner and I told them they could have a treat and I pulled the tray out. They thought I was a bit crazy giving them more dinner food! The neighbor kids were also over to enjoy the fun. :)

Friday, March 25, 2011

Spring Break Fun

Before we left town to Durango over spring break the kids and I had a few days filled with fun. On Monday we met some friends at the zoo (which was super busy!). The picture below is them all sitting in the fake huge clam shell. And the boys were busy building a dam in the play area that has a stream running through it. It was fun to see them hunting for rocks and building it up...they would have done it for hours if we didn't stop them.

On Wednesday we met up with my mom & sister (and kids) at Encanto's Enchanted Island. We hadn't been there in quite awhile, last time most of the kids were still a little too afraid to try any of the rides but this time around they all were excited about the rides and wanted to try everything out. We took the train around, rode the Carousel, rode the roller coaster & other rides. We also had a picnic lunch and for dessert my mom bought them a ice cream treat. The picture below is of them waiting for it to arrive in a somewhat shady spot. This is how the afternoon ended up with Isabelle exhausted. She wouldn't let my mom snuggle up with her because she was trying to fight the sleep...but she ended up falling asleep with my mom holding her head up (sorry mom for the inappropriate hand!). :) How funny.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Trip to Durango

This last week was spring break for Dylan and we planned a trip to Durango CO with Israel & Kati. We found a 2 bedroom townhouse to rent that was close to downtown and had a park close by that we could walk to. Durango is beautiful, I can't wait to go back again sometime during the spring time when I'm sure it would be even more amazing!


Mark, Israel and Dylan went snowboarding/skiing one day so Kati and I took the girls to the childrens museum. They had a bunch of fun playing with all the activity centers.


Mark and Dylan on the ski lift at Purgatory. They had such a great day together! Dylan was amazing on the ski's...Mark said they went up the big lift after doing the bunny hill for a couple times and it got boring. I'm really proud of how quickly Dylan has picked up skiing!
Israel got a video of them coming down the hill...


We also got a afternoon of tubing in at Purgatory. :)


Hanging out in downtown, checking out the trains & shops

On our drive home the weather was a bit crazy. Leaving Colorado the wind was really strong and the tumbleweeds were flying across the highway by the dozens and then in spots there was dirt that was so thick it was hard to see very far in and then we got to Flagstaff and there was a lot of snow coming down (when we drove to CO the ground had no snow). So we stopped and played for a little while.



The trip was really great overall. It is so much easier traveling now that the kids are getting older and of course we always have a great time with the Whittemore's! The bummer of the trip was that Isabelle was not feeling well for most of the time, then I ended up getting strep throat and Israel & Kati had to leave early due to some family stuff (but it was probably good they left our germs).
Goodbye Durango, until next time!!


Friday, March 11, 2011

Safe Walls

We had a new backyard neighbor move in a few weeks ago and last week she mentioned to me that she wanted to put a block wall up and wanted to talk to my landlord about him helping with the costs of the wall. Of course I was thrilled with this news because all we have had was this little chain link fence...not secure at all. Here are the before and after pictures.

Also we had 4 big olive trees that were removed this week...also so thankful for this because they dropped tons of olives and were a huge mess.



The trees were cut down but the stumps were not grinded...so it's a little funky but way better than it was. Now it's ready for some grass and it will be perfect!


Our landlord had decided not only to do the shared wall but decided to do the entire fenceline. The backyard feels new and big. More than anything I love that it feels safe and I know the kids can't be seen from everyone passing by on the street.


We've been going to the story time at the library on Thursdays for a few months now. The girls really love it. They have songs, puppets, little instruments and of course book reading.
Cadence is in the pink shirt and Maggie is in the blue to the right of her.

The girls had their own little dance going during one of the songs. Isabelle loves being apart of the class when Maggie is there...but if Maggie isn't there then she just sits quietly on my lap.
It's actually really funny because Isabelle will be a little stinker with the girls during class, they will be sitting there quietly listening and Isabelle will walk up and sit in their laps or give them a huge hug that makes them fall backwards.


Tuesday, March 8, 2011

SO EXCITED!!

Our fist egg!! I am so excited!

The girls (hens not cadence & isabelle :)) were stressed all day today because we are having a block wall put up around the whole yard. It was loud and their home was a wreck with having to be moved around because of the wood fence coming down.
I was getting ready to leave tonight and I look from our front yard and see two of our chickens sitting on the top of the fence...able to roam free! Ahhh. So tonight they are staying the night in the garage until we can get their home back safe and secure (and their wings clipped again). I went in just now to check on them and they had made their own roost and there was a egg on the ground! I think the stress made it come right out. Either way. I'm excited and her back end still looks good!

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Cadence's Chicken Song

So Cute!

Friday, March 4, 2011

Signs of Life

I am so excited this morning, my garden has started to sprout! Since this is my first "real" garden I have been worried that the seeds I planted weren't going to grow and I was going to be waiting around and nothing would pop up. I have been checking it every day for like 2 weeks now...and this morning I come out to a bunch of greens pushing their way through the dirt. Such a beautiful sight!


I wish I had a good camera to be able to get a close up that is actually clear...but for now I captured the moment with these blurry pics. :)


I also planted some herbs & tomatos in some topsy turvy's, we'll see how they do.

It will be fun to see what a difference a week will make with the garden!


Thursday, March 3, 2011

Do you have a rubber glove??

Our chickens are doing great and I think are probably full grown now, they are 5 1/2 months old and should any day now start giving us some eggs. We can hardly wait...I honestly don't know how people wait the full 6 months when buying from chicks, it feels like we have had them so long but I guess it's only been 2 months.

Cover your eyes, the next picture is pretty gross! :) Yesterday while I was cleaning the coop I noticed my chicken had a ball of tissue coming out his hind end. Of course I was worried for her and had no idea what to do. I called Jill who has helped me out with my chicken questions in the past and she didn't know, she said to call the lady I bought them from. So I called her and they didn't know, so I posted a help question on the permaculture website (which if you are interested in gardening or chickens it is a must go to!). I had a answer this morning from someone, whew. At least I knew what it was and what to do even though it could be life threatening for her. Her condition is called Prolapse and basically it happens when chickens are having too much strain from pushing a egg out or too big of egg. Well, we don't have any eggs yet, but obviously this girls body parts are getting ready.

Needless to say the remedy is not pleasant. This morning after reading a bunch I was ready to take on the task of healing her up. Steps to be taken was this...clean the tissue, put on honey to make it retract (natural remedy), push it in (yes that is correct, I needed to insert my finger in her little hiney), and apply preparation H and keep her apart for the others because they will peck at it and they could peck so hard that it would pull it out and eventually pull her intestines out!

It was first thing this morning, still in pajamas and I feel the urgent need to take care of this because time is of the essence. I send a text message to my neighbor at 7:45 in the morning that says this, "random question but do you have any rubber gloves? My chicken has a butt problem". I didn't get a response right away but when I did she said that was the funniest text she has ever received! :) I decided I would put her in the garage to keep her apart from the others since I didn't really have any other area. I pulled out all the supplies needed, minus the prep H (thankfully I don't have that on hand :)) I bring her in the house and it's gone!! Seriously gone. I was so thankful I didn't have to do any of what I had prepared myself to do! And yes, it was the right chicken because I tied a little string on her leg yesterday so I would know for sure.


Cadence took this picture of me this morning after finding out she was fine...at least for now. It will probably come back especially when she actually starts to push out eggs. So I'll have to keep a eye on her. I'm really hoping it's healed up and I'll forget it ever happened.
The joys of owning chickens! :)



Wednesday, March 2, 2011

First Time Skiing

Last week the whole family went to Snowbowl for a daytrip. Mark had a lift ticket that expired last week so we wanted to take advantage of it while we could. So the plan was for me to see if I could learn to ski (I have never ever tried before) and Dylan to get some more practice in before we take our trip to Durango over Dylan's spring break.This picture was taken right after I finally was able to stand on the ski's. I'm excited that Dylan is learning while he is young and will get the hang of it before he gets more afraid of falling! I was so worried about going too fast down the hill because I had no way of stopping except for falling...not fun. :)
We also rode the ski lift for the first time. It was a bit nerve racking at first but then Dylan started to relax a little and wasn't so worried about what would happen if he fell off. Since I have never rode the lift before with ski's on, I waved the guy at the top over to help us know how to get off (Mark laughed at me about that) :).
Dylan and I did two rough runs and Dylan was not having a good time so we took a break. Mark went snowboarding for a few runs and then he and Dylan went and did the bunny slope some more. It was great for Dylan to have Mark's help and instruction. He did so great, by the end of the day he could control what direction to go and stop when needed. It was so fun to see him be excited about "getting it"!
The girls were along as well. They hung out and played in the snow. :) Last time we were up for Dylan's lessons Cadence saw a little girl in the lessons in all pink so now she always says, "when I get bigger I'm going to be like the girl in pink". I'm glad she wants to try it out...maybe next year.