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Saturday, December 9, 2006

Merry Christmas to our Soldiers

This is very last minute, but we would like to send a platoon of soldiers in Iraq a care package this Christmas. It will not make it there until February, but many people send stuff at Christmas, the bigger needs happen through out the rest of the year. That said, we would like to send a care package now, and then one again around the 4th of July.

These soldiers are away from their home, families and loved ones, some for the second and third year. These people are young, for the most part, and are giving up many of the things that we take for granted.

If you could find it in your heart to help we would like to have everything together and ready to mail by January 2nd.

Stuff that would be welcome would be:

First and foremost, cards and letters. You may wonder what to write, just tell them about your life and family, they will love it. Maybe share your faith with them, and let them know that you are praying for them (and then, if you don't already, add them to your prayers)

Then they could use stuff like:

calling cards, toiletries (kleenex, nail clippers, lipbalms, saline spray, vasoline, hand sanitizers, cottenelles, diaper wipes), cologne, soap, dried salami, pepperoni sticks, jerkey, candy, gum, lifesavers, playing cards, batteries (AAs being probably the most popular) books, fabreeze, paper/envelope sets, books of stamps.

This is just a start, try to image you are in a foreign country, far away from the grocery store, not to mention Walmart, then think of what you would really want.

If you could please drop your donations with Nancy Lamunyon (258-5576) or Liz Chesley (258-2191) or Jill Hart (258-2234). Or if you are in Lewiston you can drop stuff off at Liz Hawkes (258-5331).

We really need to have everything collected by Monday the 1st. Thank you all so much for helping out the soldiers this year.

Merry Christmas to you and your families.

Thursday, December 7, 2006

Chickens lay eggs

Yes, of course we have chickens.

They are all girls and they are all named Henny Penney and they are all Buff Orpinton. Silly little chickens they are too. Even though it is really cold out these nights they all want to sleep on the roof of the little protective cage we built around thier chicken coop. So every night I have to go out and physically put them into the chicken coop. They live in the Harliquin Hen House surrounded by the Henitentury. Without the high fence they were flying out of the lower fencing and escaping into the horse field next door.

They are bad beggers my chickens. Any time I go out to the coop they all come squawking at me for left overs from the summer garden. It is very sad now, they have picked it clean and there won't be any fresh veggies until the garden is going again in late spring.

Next year we are going to try to garden all year, so maybe the poor gals will get their daily treats again.

Though they have slowed down, we still get lots of eggs from them. I understand that if you put a light bulb in their chicken coop that chickens will lay better, but we have not chosen to do that.
Our coop is very simple. It is just a basic box with sloped sides, so there is a pitch to the coop roof. We made it out of pressed fiber board (construction grade), threw in a 2x2 for a perch and put plastic white baskets, like the kind you get in the box stores, for nests. And of course there is plenty of bedding material for them.
We chose the Buff Orpington chickens because they are supposed to do well in colder weather. So far they seem to be doing great.

Now to show my blond roots - I never realized that chickens mate! But they don't have to have mate to produce eggs. The things I have learned this last year.


(the photo is copyrighted by www.potomacs.com
Paul Worsham)

My poor bees, I believe they have all died.

Last spring I put my beehive together, ordered my bees and put them in the main hive with the foundation frames inside. There was only one crucial problem, I didn't realize you have to install foundation. So there they were, my bees, happily putting burr comb all over the place. Mostly the honey comb was going sideways in the frames so the frames could not be pulled out.

Then I saw the pollen and thought that my bees were all ill! Pollen is kind of greenish, or redish, or yellow.

It wasn't until almost summer that I realized my mistake and put some foundation in there for the poor bees (all named Maybel) Perhaps if I had gotten the foundation in there faster the bees could have produced more honey and more bees so that there would be more bees to gather into a ball for warmth.

Next spring is coming, we will try again. Now that we know how to start them out, perhaps they will make it through next winter.

Wednesday, December 6, 2006

Geez, we've got bees...

Willow Valley Honey produces honey from bees who live here in Richmond and in Lewiston, UT. This is thier first year of an actual harvest that they are selling. This honey is highly nutritious and tastes great! There is the added advantage that these bees forage within the community so if you eat thier honey rumor has it that you won't suffer from allergies so bad.

Peter and Tami live here in Richmond and sell thier honey by phone, you can reach them at 435-258-0303 (yes they ship) or you can purchase thier honey from Crumb Brothers Bread, located at 291 South 300 W, Logan, UT, Phone: 435-792-6063 Or you can purchase the honey from the Rockhill Creamery, located at 561 State Stree in Richmond. Thier cheese stand is closed until April, but you can contact them through thier website: http://www.rockhillcheese.com

Tuesday, December 5, 2006

Country Life in the Valley

Life in Cache Valley is awesome. We have the beautiful mountains, now covered in snow. The people are friendly. Life is a little slower.

As a Christian home schooling family, we are busy, but it is a pace that we can slow down if we choose.

We have chickens and bees and lots of dogs. Next spring we hope to become farmers.

In the short time we have lived here we have been shown the marvels of small town living. There is locally produced honey, fresh cheese, hand made soap, local bread that is hands down the best bread produced in, dare I say it, yes, the world. Not to mention that we have a Pepperidge Farms factory two miles from our house. Yes, Virginia, that is a dangerous thing for us.

As I develop this site, I will include links to these various producers and high lite local commerce. We will also look at the great out of doors. There are lots of trails, lakes and fishing available.

I look forward to sharing this great place we live with the rest of the world.