Let's Go Outside

We love the country life and love our little farm. Right now we have dogs, chickens and bees. We also keep a garden and try to improve each year. I particularly enjoy sitting outside or walking outside. Soothing, calming, rejuvenating.

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Dogs

We cannot live without dogs! We still have two (to read about deceased St. Bernard, Maggie, click here and Cocoa, click here).

Maverick is still a pain in the ass but luckily we love pains in the ass.

Bryce, our Staffordshire Bull Terrier (that sounds much more pleasant and less menacing than pit bull) is ours because Maverick needed a buddy and Cocoa wasn't it. We went to the Cattaraugus County SPCA with Mav and Cocoa to do a meet and greet. They had about two dogs that would tolerate other dogs. We said we would take both but someone already had an application in on the other. Honestly, out first choice wasn't Bryce (his name at the kennel was El Duce). This is the second time I've gotten a dog from the SPCA that hasn't been a first choice. Each dog was the best dog ever so my usual adage of go with your first instinct doesn't apply to shelter dogs!

Bryce has become a welcome addition to the family and is a bit of a hoot and a ham. And he and Maverick have become friends even though I think Mav drives him nuts. Bryce, we think, is about 8.5 years old. Maverick is about 5.5 years old.

Our latest nutball is Gunner. We got him from someone in town who couldn't keep him. At first he wouldn't stop humping Bryce (poor Bryce). Then we got him fixed and he stopped humping. They are friends.

But Gunner and Maverick are real buds. They all play well together but Gunner owns the house.

Chickens

Jamie still has to assemble my tree swing/chair so I can sit in front of the coop and watch my chickens. They are hypnotic, serene and calming. Love the chickens. Egg production slowed this winter but picks up each time we have a thaw or seasonally warm weather. 

Bees

Bees, please. 

 

I love the idea of the bees but have had trouble with keeping them. I just don't know what to do. 

We had a friend of a friend come over to give us a quick inservice and that helped. What also helped is Masterson's Garden Center in East Aurora. They are the bee authority in the area and stock all manner of bee accoutrement. I participated in the beeekeeping apprenticeship program. Look for honey, beeswax soap and candles in the near future!

 

I've dubbed this beekeeping suite my "BuzzMat" suit because I feel as though I am doing some sort of abatement when I wear it (like a HazMat suit).  You can see our hive neglect led to some interesting hive formations.

Garden

Our garden is snow-covered and in hibernation right now but I am looking through seed catalogs for our crop for this season. We hope to germinate seeds in the house this year to save money on buying plants. Let's see how that project works!

Projects

The chicken coop was a huge project for Jamie. He was determined to make it a chicken condo. Each year we expand our brood.

We also rotate the chicken's grazing area so they have more of an area to forage and we get the benefit of the forage (soil fertilization).

We may add different fowl to our collection this year. 

And look for our Chicken TV soap operate on YouTube to debut this year!

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7382 Route 16

Franklinville, NY 14737

716-864-9768

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