Around the Haus
It’s that nice quiet time of the month (if you’re lucky to avoid the mad rush at some stores today). We ran the Turkey Trot yesterday, came home and cooked up a feast, and now turkey soup is simmering in the crockpot. The Advent candles are being unpacked and the wreath form brought out of the cabinet. I’m getting ready to bring out last year’s big project: the Fontanini set individually bagged up, to be unwrapped once a day when we light the Advent candles and say the evening Bible verse about the coming of the Messiah and the Nativity story. And of course, we scrambled together a family picture for the annual Christmas card (outtake at the end of the post). There’s a chicken in this one, but Pecksy the Second was no better at looking at the camera than any of the rest of us!
Docena enjoyed her first Thanksgiving (and the mashed potatoes) and gave me this perfect smile for her debut on the family Christmas card! She’s such a little darling, and everyone loves being a recipient of her “crinkle smile.” I wanted to get a picture also of Pippka and Docena in their matching dresses, but Pippka had discovered a purple marker while we were getting dinner ready and decided to turn her hands purple. So that picture will have to wait.
It’s not always easy to pin Pippka down for a picture, anyway. She is an up and doing sort of girl and likes to be up and doing all the things! (Picture above from our trip to the beach in August)
We have a new driver in the ranks here at the Haus! Around the same time as he got his permit, the truck he intended to drive decided to quit on us. I think it was afraid of being driven by a teenager. My van is more reliable, I guess… but I’m sometimes afraid of it being driven by a teenager! haha!
If you look closely up by the chimney, Haus Meister is on the lift continuing the repainting where the cold weather stopped us last winter. Haus Meister and the boys also cleared out a decaying side deck that probably was as old as the Haus and laid a mulch path where it used to be, between the barnyard and the Haus. Other than this, we’ve been doing small usual tasks to keep up the place, like replacing dryer heating units and stocking the woodpiles for winter fires. The woodstoves are wonderful! One night this month it was cold enough to get both going at once!
On the Farm
That time you go to take the trash out and feel like you’re being watched….
Earlier this year, I posted a picture of the mother hen and her three white chicks. The day after I posted, one chick was dinner for our big dark tabby, Oscar, and not with permission! A second disappeared one other day, but the third grew to be a handsome white rooster with beige tail feathers. Interestingly, I don’t think I’ve heard him crow yet, but I am not complaining!
Toward the end of summer, one of our hens tried to set a nest but gave up after two weeks. I was worried about any possible chicks, so rushed to Tractor Supply for a basic incubator. On a whim, I added two warm duck eggs from the barn (neither female duck minded). The chicken eggs were duds after all, but we managed to successfully hatch the ducklings! We’ve named them Quackers and Quacksley.
In other news…..
I ought to apologize for the long delay in posting anything to this blog. We’ve had the usual school busyness, and the ups and downs of life with fourteen people in the house. I wouldn’t trade it for anything, believe me! But there was an added bit of craziness in my life after I asked about an odd little mole on my lower left eyelid during a routine checkup this summer. That odd little mole turned out to be melanoma stage 1A, and over the autumn, I would end up having two surgeries to remove it and get clear margins around the area. Earlier this month, we got those clear margins and the first of two repair surgeries (the second is in early December). I am beyond grateful that this thing was caught before it got worse, and for all the doctors who got rid of it and who are continuing to look out for me. And of course, for my husband and family, who took such wonderful care of me when I was recuperating. There’s something about being faced with your own mortality that adds, or should add, at least, a deeper level of gratitude for what really matters in life.
I am so thankful.