Monday, March 14, 2011

Rachel's Violin Recital 3-12-2011

Here's a video of Rachel playing 3 tunes at her violin recital.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Worm Treats

We found some baby worms in the backyard and wondered what the chickens would do with them.

Today was their first day getting worms. We shot this video during the second feeding. A couple of them know they should get them from the plate, but the rest just run around chasing the ones that have worms instead of getting one from the plate themselves. We thought it was pretty hilarious.

The white one - "Pox" - seems to be the most observant and curious. She always looks like she's studying you or puzzling things out in her head. She was the first one to take to the worms. Once she had the first one the rest chased her down to get it.

We don't plan on giving them worms often, since they are still pretty young and get all the nutrients they need from the feed. This was an experiment. We're also hoping that some exposure like this will help re-enforce their natural instincts for when they are introduced to their outdoor coop. They're already scratching around in the brooder looking for stuff under the pine shavings.

I'm amazed at how baby chickens are pretty much ready to go right out of the egg. We've had baby cockatiels several times, and they require a lot of care and tending by their parents. But chickens are walking, eyes open, and feeding themselves right away. They come "pre-programmed" with a great deal of know-how.

Friday, March 4, 2011

We've got chickens

Meet Eve, Pox, Skittles, and Omelette.

2 more to come. The outdoor coop is under construction. We've got a webcam set up for live viewing of the chickens. If you want to see it you need to email me and I need to know you. I'll send you the information.

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Sunriver 2011

We had a really good time at Sunriver this year. This was the first time everyone got to ski/snowboard together. Adam wanted to try the snowboard. It was also Rachel's first time on skis. David, Tammie, and I also skied.

David was too fast for me and I never had a chance to catch him on video. This was his 3rd or 4th time skiing and we signed him up for his first lesson (up until this point I had been what one might call a teacher if one were being so generous). Each time he'd pass me up I wasn't expecting him so the camera was never ready.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Snow Caving 2011

A couple years ago I blogged about our first snow caving experience. Well, we've been twice again since then. The most recent being just yesterday.

The first year's lessons were well learned and last year we made some improvements to the cave that we repeated this year to much success.

First, we made arrangements to arrive early in the day so that we'd have plenty of time to be digging during day light. It takes us about 5 hours to complete a cave.

Second, and this takes some experience, we dig the sleeping loft elevated above the height of the entrance to help hold in the heat. But not too high to allow for a ceiling high enough to be able to sit up.

Third, to prevent the tarp from slipping and sliding on the icy cave floor we put down a canvas floor cover. It gets very wet and has to be peeled off the floor when we leave, but it gives the tarp traction and keeps the floor stable.

The weather while we were digging was miserable. Cold, windy, snowy. But the snow was great for digging out. It was just wet enough to stick together so you can pull out big chunks. It was also wet enough to soak us through our outer layers. We got wet but stayed warm the whole time. When we finished we went inside the lodge to warm up and dry off by the fire.

Saturday morning looked beautiful, however. Clear sky and a terrific view.