Goats, rabbits, chickens (pages)

Tuesday, February 15, 2011


Now this is a snow I can relate to; one measured in feet not inches! That's the kind of snow I remember from my girlhood. We received two separate snowfalls here in the Valley each about 17-23 inches--depending on where I poked the yard-stick probe--with several small snowfalls of 1-3 inches. Then in addition we have the winter lasagna: snow layered with ice. February, the love month, has given us several days of 50-60 degree weather.

Although we still have plenty of snow, we also have a few grassy patches where the snow had been plowed thus allowing the sun to beam through with hot laser-like-snow-melting power. So, now we have wide avenues of ice-free-walking meandering purposefully throughout our farm. Mobile home to cottage. Mobile to barn. Cottage to barn. Mobile to mail box. We look like a veritable village. Cassie is appreciative of the pathways but still leaves them to do her business...such a thoughtful dog.

Jack and Mable (rooster and hens) LOVE the grassy walks. At last GREEN! Jack, the ever present provider, struts and calls his girls to first one spot of grass then another in a most delightful spectacle of male bravado. He completes his show by flying onto the highest gatepost and crowing with passionate satisfaction.

Chickens showing off their warm-weather antics have more than aesthetic appeal. Even though Mabels have never ceased egg production in spite of sub-zero temperatures and short dark days, the new green vegetation and the shinning sun will enhance the eggs with more nutrition. Mother Earth News did an interesting study about five years ago proving what my Grandma Lizzy always said: fresh air and sunshine for man or beast. Compared to the anemic grocery store eggs from caged hens, free-range chickens produced eggs with half the cholesterol, twice the vitamin E, 2 to 6 times the beta carotene (vitamin A)and 4 times the omega 3. Just crack open a Mabel-egg; it's so beautifully orange you'll think it's the sun shining in your bowl. Life is good.
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