Mock Flock Blocks!

Finally the chickens dared to go outside, however, they were determined to not set foot in the snow, as evidenced by this picture. Eventually one did get off the plank and wondered around a bit but then they all scurried back inside to their winter home in the coop. Apparently too much coop time can make them bored and resort to naughtiness! They have taken to pecking one of the birds on the back of her neck! SO, it was time for some research. I had surely heard of this but figuring I had perfectly well adjusted birds, it wasn’t going to happen to my birds, so I never thought much about it. Well, I guess it’s been a long winter, the flock is getting a bit stir crazy and my birds are not as perfectly adjusted as I thought. The research said it could be a nutritional deficiency, boredom or too much light. We thought this one over, and I’ve been feeding them well, with Organic Layer Feed, Oyster shell grit, Organic Scratch grains and pig liver, so I think it would be tough for them to be deficient in minerals or protein. We did up the light because of the cold, and since they have no xbox to play with in there, I guess they could be bored? We read that a red light bulb is a better lighting for them, and if said pecked chicken has any wounds (which she didn’t) the red light keeps the others from seeing the wounds. Once the see blood they will act like the carnivores that they are, so we don’t want that!

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So these are not giant cookies I’ve baked here, these are Organic Mock Flock Blocks. I’ve seen Flock Blocks at the store, and they are supposed to keep the flock busy pecking at it. It has grains, flour, molasses, and eggs in it. I proudly hung it as shown below waiting to see them excitedly exploring it.

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Well that is not exactly what happened. They were actually afraid of it? I took it down and tried to show them and they acted as though I was wielding a a sword and piled up in the corner waiting for certain death. So I put it back on the hanger, and left them with it. Today I will just break it up on the floor and see if it keeps them busy that way. Silly chickens.

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The cattle are waiting here with hopes of a new round bale. As soon as a new one goes into that round bale holder, they all stand around much like the water cooler at work, course that is a pretty old phrase, I wonder what is the water cooler of today in the work place?

In the kitchen we’ve tried some new things! I had a craving for fruit and wanted a bit of a treat. I thawed out a bag of raspberries from last summer and added a bit of liquid from my daughter’s canned giant cherries she made while living out west last year. Then I put it in the blender and poured it into the ice cream maker. Who knew knew that Sorbet was that astoundingly easy? I had never really thought about it, but it took a few seconds to make and was oooooh so good! In other new things, I made a Pork Loin Roast for company with mashed potatoes, collards, applesauce and no knead bread. It was very good. It was, however, ready before I thought so there was a scramble to get the rest of it ready quickly but after doling out a few jobs to others it came together in the end.

Now, Vegetarians and non pork eaters cover your ears because… this is about Jowl Bacon. Whoa and wow. If you think bacon is good, or you know anyone who loves bacon, then this may be shocking news but there is something better than bacon, it’s Jowl Bacon! Unbelievably good! I would definitely pick this over regular bacon. Last night we had sandwiches on lightly toasted olive oiled homemade bread with Jowl Bacon, and a thick layer of our neighbors delicious fantastic micro greens. This was eaten with a wonderful hot bowl of soup that was carefully labeled by me as, “Mama’s Soup”.

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We have a lot of soup makers in our family! My Mom’s soups are awesome and she’s taught us all well! We ate our delicious sandwiches with Mama’s Soup and some homemade applesauce, a perfect dinner on yet another cold night.

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