My younger sister got herself into some more trouble recently. I won't elaborate on here. If you read my regularly, you will know that I don't elaborate on the sorted details of things unpleasant to read. She came out for a visit this past weekend, starting Friday night and left early Sunday morning. We didnt do a whole lot. Just sat around and watched some tv, talked a little, but nothing too heavy.
Since she left early on Sunday I went outside for most of the day. It was quite cold and the wind was unforgiving. It made it hard to work with tarps and hard to hay down pens. Nevertheless, I pushed myself on through the day doing what needed to be done before the coming cold was to come that night through last night. Sunday night it got down to 17 degrees with a wind chill of 8. As I have said before, we have no windbreak, so everyone must be sheltered from that wind. The heat lamps ablaze and the pens covered up...everyone made it through that awfully cold and windy night. Monday night was not much better, but it only got down to 30 and the wind was not so bad overnight. It has since picked up, but we are going to have a heat wave in the 40s today. ;)
There is some sense of satisfaction to knowing you have done what you can for everyone to weather the cold. After a full days work...coming in at dark, you know everyone should be able to tolerate the night.
Now before I show you the pictures, I have to say something. Winter, to me, is an ugly time of the year. Everything is dead, brown, and lifeless. So adding all these gray tarps to the pens..well, it just makes an already ugly scene, even uglier...lol. So, for the record, I do know that this is not 'pretty', but it is very functional. I just have to get me one of those signs...it says...
So on with the pictures of my work on Sunday.
First up is Shelbys cat, Fergie. She has decided the front porch rocker is too cold and windy and has retreated to the screen back porch. To accommodate her I have set up a heat lamp, clamped on to the back of one of our outdoor chairs with the afghan donated to Fergie when she arrived on our doorstep. Add the small chair pillows around the sides for more comfort, and there you have it, a warm place for her to rest her little fuzzy head at night. For the record, Mocha has a heat lamp too. :)
Buckbuck and Babe's pen covered. (that is not one of them standing there...a polish rooster has wandered onto their side of the fence)
"Hey mom! Whatcha doin' out here? Bring anything out for me?"
Row of pens completely covered now. These house all of my breeder Seramas, my four show birds, the Silver laced polish, and Johnny (he is doing better, but that leg is never going to be the same, he is getting along though)
The Sultan pen...almost completely covered, just a small space at the door so I can peek in on them.
Yes...even bad boy Alan has been covered.
The psycho twins are covered on the left (those two young roosters, polish silkie crosses, that had to be locked up..remember they ganged up on poor Bubba and beat him up. He hasnt been the same since, has lost his dignity and still hasnt found it.) Rusty and Rudy on the right, my two Serama boys I hope to show one of these days...if there is ever a Serama judge at any of the shows I attend.
THIS...now you see that tarp draped over the top of a pen...there is a cage underneath this tarp that is tied down to the fence. Mama says I am just catering to their whim by doing this...and maybe I am. I have about 8 or so chickens that roost on this part of the fence at night. They are right in the path of the breezeway so the wind is even more brutal to sit in this spot. It was getting dark and I had to find a way to keep them from becoming chicken icicles. I had a thought. I have one extra pen, would make the perfect frame, throw a tarp over it and secure it, wire one of the cage doors open so they can get in and out of it, set it on the fence and the roof of this pen, so they can still roost on the fence...making any sense??? LOL...anyway, it worked, and they all caught on in one days time as to where to go the very next night. Smarter than you think. :)
This is a horrible picture I know, but this is the bed area the emus have chosen for themselves, not myself. I took the picture through the screen porch and that is why it looks like it does. You can see two of my old girls, Speckled Sussex hens, wading through the hay. They turn it for me, it keeps it from getting too flat and also turns any emu poo that has been left overnight. My poor emus, I don't think they were made for winter weather. Yesterday while feeding them I could see them shake and shiver from the cold wind.
Last but not least...I gave the pigs almost a whole bale of wheat straw to work with and they seemed to have made themselves a very comfy cozy bed for the two of them. You can see, they don't seem the least bit interested in coming out of their bed into the cold morning air.
I also added hay to Speckles harem pen, and the two Sultan boys pen.
Other than getting the tree at Lowes on Saturday, I reckon that is pretty much my weekend ramblings. Since we have rain coming in for Christmas Eve, Christmas day, and possibly the weekend, I imagine I will be doing this all over again. Ah such is the life of a farm girl and her menagerie of pets. I don't mind though, I love my animals and if I could afford it I would probably have them all set up with heated houses. I am not a rich person though, my family and I get by, and then a little more, but a barn is a couple of years in the future right now. We will have one though, you can bet on it.