Just when I thought I couldn't possibly love the lake next to our farm any more, this spring we have a pair of young trumpeter swans which must be nesting nearby. This afternoon the handsome young couple was on the lake edge nearest our barnyard and they were good enough to pose for a few pictures.
As can be seen, I kind of woke them up by accident when I snuck down to see what waterfowl were hanging about. As always, the chicken-shit ducks were out of there first with the geese following closely behind. You'd really think they'd get used to me and my camera. I guess the swans figured they were close enough to me in size or that I was not actually a threat as they didn't even get in the water. One even went to preening itself rather casually and then finally slipping into the water, although not going far. It would seem, from the last picture in this group, that all the preening earned some mocking from the mate.
Meanwhile, back where the work is...the folks' new greenhouse showed up on Monday so we've been baking dirt and I've been building some growing beds. I was expecting the structure to be without a floor but it came WITH a floor so that meant starting again. Luckily I had not yet put the boxes together and I think this may have worked out nicer in the end. Still gotta do some painting tho.
Why have I been baking dirt is what may be being thought at this point. Well, the reason is that I have been gathering soil from barnyard on the edge of the lake which was used to bed cattle in the winter when I was young. Now, at least 15 years later this is some very fertile soil but dad is worried about weeds, and understandably so, although I took this dirt from a cattle wallow spot and nothing has been growing there. So we cleaned the stove pipes in the old house and fired up the stove and started sterlizing soil. Damn does it take a long time and a lot of minding with a 1907 wood stove.
Next project, a chicken coop for mom's 200 laying birds which should be here in a month, and a chicken tractor for the 4 old hens remaining now (hopefully they'll go broody again and can be given some eggs to hatch and raise). Have I mentioned how frustrating I find carpentry? Ah well, it beats sitting under flourescent lights all day. I just wish I had the natural touch with wood like some masters I have known. Sure practice makes one better but one either has that natural touch, or one doesn't.
Oh and Happy Mother's Day to any Mothers who come by!
Peace and comfort to all.
4 days ago