Lots of exciting news here on the farm! It’s been almost two weeks since my last post, mostly because I took a vacation. Actually, it was a staycation, since I stayed home. Bess Bess came to visit us from Omaha! She was properly impressed by everything, and all my predictions came true – she loved the chickens, thought the goats were cute, and got cornered by a puffed up and hissing turkey. I would have rescued her sooner, but I was laughing too hard. Bess Bess wasn’t a fan of the turkeys.
Speaking of the turkeys, HUGE news! Christmas laid her first egg! Turkey eggs are quite large, maybe four times the size of chicken eggs. This one looked like a “practice” egg, since the shell was fairly translucent. Very pretty though, covered in brown speckles. Oddly enough, she chose to lay her egg in the wading pool, which I guess makes sense, given how fond she is of dropping bombs in there. She laid the egg two days ago, and it’s still in the refrigerator. I wanted to wait until Gene wasn’t working so he could be the one to crack it open… Since she and Thanksgiving are so fond of getting them some wild turkey lovin’ on, I’m afraid it might be fertilized. (And as you may have noticed, today’s Fashion Farmer is wearing sparkle neon green).
Since it’s been so hot here during the day (and cold at night, whatever, Washington weather gods, you suck) most of the animals have been hanging out poolside. The wading pool is supposed to be for drinking only, but no one pays attention to the rules (particularly the exit the pool to go to the bathroom rule — good thing they don’t have a hot tub!). I have to refill it once or twice a day. Who knew turkeys like to wade?
The Bedonkaducks new favorite game is to play in the mud puddle created by my emptying the pool, then wash themselves off in the freshly refilled pool. If they weren’t cute it would be annoying. Their second favorite game is to blow bubbles in the puddles with their beaks… they sound like five-year-olds playing with straws in their milk glasses.
Ceri isn’t a huge fan of the heat, but she does love playing in water. Her plastic wading pool is not long for this world, since she likes to try to pick it up and empty it. I think it’s because she knows I will come fill it with the hose, and then she can play. She’s very similar to the other animals in that she loves to drop random objects into the pool. I discovered the hard way that instead of actually eating slugs, the ducks are opting to drop them into their pond, where they then die, sink to the bottom, and bloat to fifteen times their normal size. Nasty.
In other bird news, the fancy chicks are doing well, although they’re at that stage where their new feathers are growing in, so they look totally scraggly and grumpy all the time. The ones with the head feathers are hysterical, they remind me of that 80s band Flock of Seagulls. I can’t wait until they’re full grown! We are still deciding on names, but I’m thinking along the lines of Reggae singers…too bad I don’t know any off the top of my head. “King Julian” is an option if we have a rooster; he’s that lemur character from Madagascar.
In actual farm news, I’m proud to say that we canned 42 jars of pickles in the last few weeks! Gene cheated a little, because we had to buy our cucumbers from a local farm, but it’s a farm I love to support. Big shout out for Duris Cucumber Farm in Puyallup, for everybody local. While we were prepping the veggies for pickling, every time I looked up one of the puppies was eating a cucumber. I would take it away, and within five minutes, they had another one. We were storing the ones we were slicing in a huge water filled cooler in the kitchen, and I knew they weren’t getting them out of there (I’m a detective, I get paid to be observant!) It took me an embarrassingly long time to figure out they were getting them from the box we had stored in the back room. We had a lot of fun, though, the pickles taste amazing. I also totally reorganized my canning supplies; we bought a new storage shelf and I’ve already filled it up. Although Bess Bess was impressed with our supply of canned and dehydrated supplies, the mere subject of our “Apocalypse Closet” fussed her greatly. She was similarly un-impressed with our experiment to dehydrate eggs. Since we’re getting 8 fresh eggs a day now (and one can only eat so many in day), we decided to try dehydrating them for storage. It actually worked pretty well, at least the dehydrating portion of it. We haven’t tried reconstituting them yet, but judging from their appearance, I expect the taste and consistency will remind Gene of his Army days, and probably not in a good way.