14 August 2012

multitasking in the evenings

Greetings all,
In the evenings while dinner is cooking, i'm often sipping tea while baking a pie, cake, cookies or . . . egg shells.  I like to multitask those chores which require attention in spits & spurts, around something i have to focus on.  I use the oven heat for dual purpose & bake tomorrow's recess while we eat dinner (sometimes cake decorating is best done after the children have gone to bed!!)  I can't tell you how much easier this is with my husband home cooking the dinner . . . i still have 4 children asking homework/ party/ sports scheduling questions at the same time!!
 So tonight i was baking our hen's egg shells to make shell grit to give back to them for an additional dose of egg-making-calicum.  Rather brilliant.  Just 10 minutes in the oven at 170C to remove any flavour of them being their own eggs, crush & serve separate to their grains/ pellets/ corn.  They look like sequins & smell like burnt meringue.  
 Lots of city siders have been asking me "is it really that easy to keep chickens??" as i live in suburbia too.  Well i'm home all day & spend at least half an hour with our chicks every day: handling them, spot cleaning, hand feeding fresh fruits & vegetables - it's no wonder they laid eggs all through Winter with the animal husbandry.  Then add 4 children who cuddle & treat them with fresh clover & grasses every afternoon!!  We make the time.  I'm sure most of what i do is unnecessary, but they greet me at the gate, they are wonderful friendly company, they love me back Ok??  
In short, it's a lot of effort for a couple of cartons of fresh eggs a week, but it's so satisfying for our family & my husband is loving the manure on the rest of the garden, literally nothing is wasted.  Ok, i've also found handsome soldier out in the chicken run picking up the affectionate Pekin Bantam chicks - little balls of pom pom feathers - who sit in your hands & chatting to the ducks   
 I have decided that ducks are nearly impossible to photograph, especially ones who excitedly waddle towards you, it's just like trying to photograph a toddler!!  Their feathers are so warm, i'll find the children sitting with a duck on their lap, hands under their wings, adorable.  Can you believe i'm actually scared of birds??
I raise everything up onto crates - from the road side - saves the coop getting wet from the ground up, insulates that little bit more from the cold, you can rake under them & i just really like old coloured packing crates!!  Love Posie

14 comments:

TexWisGirl said...

your feathered fowl are very pretty - and obviously love the care they get with you. :)

Kate Sins said...

Wow, my parents have chooks but were told to never feed them eggshells. I never thought to look for a way it was possible! Yay! My mum is going to be so excited.

Meh, who cares if all that work yields just a few cartons of eggs? There's so much more to be gained by having those gorgeous chooks than just the monetary value. Imagine if everything we did was only considered for the monetary value - no craft would ever get done!! I love that you have them in suburbia. Just fabulous.

mel @ loved handmade said...

I'll be passing the egg shell idea on to my parents for their chookens! It sure is nice to have someone else cook the dinner so you can focus on all the other things that need doing, how wonderful to have him home..xx

Seaweed and Raine said...

Reading about your feathered friends makes me miss having some. Love your multi-tasking girl... last time I tried that I burned the patties I was making (that's babybrain for you!).

Cas said...

thats awesome with the egg shells. mu dad said they used to do that in the 'old days'....i find shop bought eggs are so thin these days, i can only imagine how yummy your eggs must be with all that love & attention. next time im up your way, im popping in for some home cooked bacon & eggs!!

Sim said...

My brother keeps chickens and he lives just 10 mins from the centre of Sydney! They are treated like royalty and with 4 chooks (with names like "White Mike" and "Kevin" he not only gets enough eggs for his family, but often passes on the rest to us. I love watching his 2yr old running around the back yard with them and enjoying their company. My kids are scaredy cats with them though, so I definitely need to expose them to animals more frequently!

The Moerks said...

I didn't know about the egg shell thing. I must try it. Our silkies have become good little layers. Their small eggs are rather cute.

Posie Patchwork said...

Oh thrilled to read that even experienced chicken owners didn't know about feeding them back their own shells?? Yay!! I gave them to the hens today, the whole lot (about 2 dozen eggs worth) had been gobbled down, yay. I buy Shell Grit from Pet Barn and it's about $14 for 5kg, much smaller (like sand) & they didn't enjoy it as much. Score!! Now ALL egg shells will be saved for roasting & the herb garden to keep pesky snails away, love Posie

Anonymous said...

Awesome shell tip, thx.

Mother Down Under said...

Once Baby C gets a bit older we will get chooks! And I can't wait!
I love your packing crate idea...your chickens are very on trend!

Fitness Food And Style said...

OH how I love your blog!!! How cool. So glad you looked me up via Retro Mummy and for stopping by mine. I am now a follower too :)))) good luck with your sustainable living in the country, I would so love that. Keep in touch xxDani

Michele said...

love the cup and teapot where is that from?

Posie Patchwork said...

Oh why thank you, the tea pot is from a gallery in Canberra, but i've seen them in lots of tea shops since, about $50, really sweet, i have a Swedish girl too. Love Posie

Simoney said...

I Love packing crates too! Something so industrial/gritty about them; beautiful in their own rough way. My mum has always had chooks - i've been too scared of the extra work to go there, but you make it sound almost do-able!
x