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Matilda & Her Chicks Update

Just a quick little post ... (Ha Ha - that was my intention :)
I have lots to write about, but also trying to use these unseasonably warm days to finish preparing for winter. Saturday, I cleaned coops in 40 degree weather, even a little sunshine. Yes, the last one I cleaned after dark. But I just turned on their light & used my trusty headlamp to go back & forth when dumping the bin-fulls of litter in the chicken's yard. Only have the roosters' coop left, but so glad to get that done on a beautiful warm day for December! While I was at it, did a little rearranging of some of the young stock. The "big group", aka, the PA/DC coops are still on grower feed, even though there are more pullets laying, plus the adults which are molting. One hen "Pansy" looks like a porcupine right now. But, that's a good thing, I suppose because I that means she'll return to laying faster. I "read somewhere" that good layers molt faster, and they had a d…

Matilda is a Mother!

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Remember that post about Lydia's daughter Matilda & how I'd put two eggs under her that the duck had started to incubate? Well, they never hatched but I set 6 more eggs on Nov 15th. I hadn't counted out when they should be due, but this morning when I checked on Matilda, there was an empty egg shell in front of the nest. Sure enough, a little chick was underneath her. Here are the photos I took tonight:

If you look closely, the chick has feathered feet! Since it hatched from a "khaki green" egg, I presume its mother is  one of the Bielefelder "Bob" & Catskill Homesteader  "Susan" pullets ; the father would be one of the Swedish Flower Hen & bantam Millie fleur Cochin crosses. What a little cutie & hardy as one day Matilda didn't return to the right nest & I found her at night on the wrong nest. It was below freezing & all the eggs were cold, but obviously this little chick survived!
Last night moved the young Biele…

Happy Thanksgiving!

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There is so much to be thankful for, that it would take more time that I'd like to spend in just one sitting to write it all down!
But, here's a few "favorite" things I'm thankful for:

The provision of a home and food,
a wonderful life that despite its trials and tribulations, there is much that makes it very enjoyable.

The abundant garden this year, including the fall crop of arugula
that's surviving the cold temps & repeated frosts.


My great parents and the special time we spent together
for my birthday, including this wonderful hike.


An especially BIG THANK YOU to My God and King who has faithfully
lead and directed me each step of the way along this journey of life.



 I'm also thankful for all that has gotten accomplished this year,
especially the delay in snowfall, because it has allowed us to get many
outdoor projects buttoned up before it was too cold.



















The many pullets and yes, cockerels that have been hatched here, and
all the wonderful homes t…

Fall cleanup of garden

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Well, it was supposed to start raining today around noon, but The Lord held back the rain until 3 PM. Mom & I pulled more weeds from the garden, plus found some beautiful carrots that were hiding among the kale plants. I let volunteer catnip plants grow among the vegetables this year and what a mistake! Where we used to live they didn't get big but with all the compost they became mammoth. So their huge root systems made it tough to pull up. But we made progress!

This bed Mom planted with garlic for next year.


We dumped three loads of weeds in the chicken yard - both the huge & small wheelbarrow were overflowing. This made everyone happy! 

One small load went in the brooder barn & turkey coop. 

The hatchery chicks are growing so fast - sure hope they didn't  send me meat birds! 

Ellie's chicks

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A family friend have me her old iPhone so I'm testing it out for posting here on my blog. Below are photos of Ellie's chicks who are growing quite nicely.  The flowery chicks are Confetti the Cochin & Kevin the SFH's chicks. The rest are Catskill Homesteaders. 









Hen Spotlight: Lydia's Daughter Matilda

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Happy November 1st!
In the last post, I mentioned that some of the young pullets had begun to lay. One of them that I'd like to highlight in this post is Lydia's daughter, who I've been trying to think of a good name for until this morning. I settled on "Matilda" .


Matilda the beginning of Septemeber


I was going to sell this pullet, but when I was sorting through them several months ago, I realized that it was Lydia's daughter. In case you've never heard of Lydia before, she's a Partridge Chantecler from Ideal Poultry that I got as a chick in 2012. Lydia is not known for her egg production, but her unbreakable "mothering" fixation, known as being a broody hen. Maybe she just doesn't want to be chased by the roosters. Currently, she is raising 22 hatchery chicks who were hatched Sept 23rd.


In 2013 Lydia had a daughter via Michael Jessie, Olive, and she proved to another good broody hen, as long as she didn't share her chicks with …

Fall Flock Update

I've written about other things here at Paradise in Disguise Hobby Farm, but I thought it was time for a "fall flock update". Although, I'll have to postpone images until another time, as they're still on the camera.
The first update is on the new roosters, a Swedish Flower Hen & Barnevelder. They're still out in the "garden coop", but that's not winter-worthy. I hope to integrate the two boys once I process some of the older roosters, so there's less competition. The "bachelor pad" is full right now, but the selection process will be tricky, as they're all nice, handsome & friendly. Thankfully, I have other roosters to introduce to them as well, so it'll be better than just introducing 2 new roosters.  Space is an issue here on only 3/4 of an acre, though I do have a nice large newly built "coop" that's right now being used as a "brooder barn" for some hatchery pullets chicks that a friend wan…

Catskill Homesteader Chickens Photo Update on BYC

Posted a collection of Catskill Homesteader photos on BYC, so thought I'd share it here
as well:
(Scroll down the page, it was posted today - 10/24)

http://www.backyardchickens.com/t/975521/catskill-homesteader-breeding-project/10#post_15996953

I think some of the photos were posted on this blog, but either way, hope you enjoy the "eye candy"!

BackyardChickens.com - NY Thread Shared Posts

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Instead of writing a blog post here, I made the "mistake" of clicking on BackyardChickens.com, and looking at same of my subscribed threads I try to follow. One of them is the "NY chicken lover!!!!" thread, which is quite active, so if you miss a few days or a week or even longer, as I had, there was well over 500 unread posts. Of course, I didn't read all of them, but mainly scrolled through all the pages to see any photos are words that "caught my attention". Here is what I posted by the time I was all done catching up on the other NY chicken lovers:
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Originally Posted by myfivegirls: (That's my BYC username, since I joined in 2009 when I only had 5 hens! Long gone are those days, and if I had to choose just 5 hens to keep, it would be hard to choose my 5 favorites.)
(What is highlighted was replies to my post or things I quoted from other BYC'ers, so I left their usernames to give them credit as well.)


Hello all! Haven't be…

Overflowing with Blessings from God

Wow! Did the Lord ever bless today, for there was much accomplished! I really am enjoying this "new boss", because He's far smarter and knows way more about what needs to be done and how to do it. For so many years when I set about doing a project, such as building a coop or such, I'd often spend at least half of the time trying to find the right "recycled" piece of wood that would work, even when the lumber pile was organized. "Recycling" or "up-cycling" or whatever you want to call it - but when you take less than perfect wood in all different shapes and sizes and try to build with it - can be a blessing and a curse at the same time. Yes, you're saving money by not having to buy the lumber, but there can be aggravation when you try 5 different pieces of wood & they're all too short, or need to be cut. But, the past few times I've embarked on another "building project", it's been different & so muc…

Swedish Flower Hens - Highlighted in another Blog.

On September 11th, I received an e-mail regarding my Craigslist ad about Swedish Flower Hen pullets. I responded to the questions, and within 24 hours, Tobias was ready to come pick them up. I had already let everyone outside, not knowing anyone was coming on Saturday. So, I went outside & caught the pullets from which he could choose. Usually, the chickens know if I'm trying to catch them & run away, so I generally like to catch them at night, so both of us are less stressed. But, the Lord must have been there guiding my hands, as they were calmly caught without much fuss and separated in a dog crate inside one of the grass paddocks closest to the garden.
   When Tobias arrived, my brother Joel was home working on his Cub Cadet tractor, which looks like it went through WWII and "lived to tell about it". (Joel was in his tractor/vechicle repair clothes, so was not the most "presentable" either - kind of had the "red-neck/ hill-billy look"; no…

Change of Seasons

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As I write this, I have 210 photos uploading to Flickr, many of which I hope to share on future blog posts. One week ago was my first "official" day back here at Paradise in Disguise Hobby Farm. It took awhile to get back into the swing of things. Upon returning, I realized that summer clothes were not needed, and it took me part of two days to switch from summer to winter clothes in my closet, plus go through things that I haven't used in one year.
Along with the changing of the seasons and colder weather, I've been tired lately and not wanting to get up at 5am like I have been most of the summer months. Even with going to bed earlier some days, I feel like my body wants to hibernate already! But, alas, there's no time for hibernation, but I have allowed myself to "sleep in" several mornings to 6 or 7 am. But regardless of when I finally get out of bed and start my morning with reading God's Word and spending time in His presence, there's al…

I'm back!

I returned home last night from a week long vacation in Maine with a friend!
We had a wonderful time visiting "friends" who are more like family to us. Lots of laughter, love, sharing of hearts and the great things the Lord is doing in each of our lives.
The last time I was away from home for longer than just a few days was 2009. Before I really got into raising lots of chickens, etc. While I enjoy hobby farming, it does tend to "tie you down" to the homestead. Not a complaint, but makes going away more challenging.
Well, slowly getting back into the routine, as such I need to go finish my chores outside!

Working in the Rain on the Turkey's Coop

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"Some people don't know enough to come in out of the rain."
Others, know enough, but continue to work in the rain, even into the dark with headlamps.
If you've been around or known our family for any length of time, you'd quickly discover that we're not afraid of hard work, even in the less desirable weather conditions.
Yesterday was no exception. There's a deadline, and work must continue, even if it's more pleasant to be working on a sunny, warm autumn day, than on a humid, rainy autumn day.
Thankfully, while doing the morning "critter chores" with Mom & Dad learning the intricacies, it was only misting lightly. But by the time Mom & I headed back outside to work on the "3rd world coop construction project", the rain had increased its intensity. So cloaked in rain gear and working under the cover of leaky metal roofing, construction resumed as normal.



Tuesday's project was to finally make the turkeys a coop. They…