” I really don’t need buns of steel. I’d be happy with buns of cinnamon.”
– Ellen DeGeneres
As a woman over forty I have the wonderful benefit of now considering and planning for menopause. Seems early, I am sure, to some of you with stellar reproductive health. With complications too numerous to list but apparently fairly common, including: introverted uterus, cystic conditions, cervical conditions, extreme menstrual cramps, hormonal migraines and fibrocystic breast disease.
I have sought out comfort in traditional as well as more natural remedies. There are things I can not go completely herbal for, but I appreciate all the help I can get.
Enter Cinnamon. Recent studies are showing relief in this former pancake and toast shaker. No wonder we all feel great after pumpkin pie! Kidding. Well no I am not. I love pumpkin pie. Ilam Medical School in Iran recently recruited women for a research project with cinnamon.
Ages ranged between 18 and 30 with equal segments being divided into two groups. One given a placebo and the other cinnamon. The cinna-buns took 420mg three times a day during the first 3 days of their cycle. In month two results became very clear. Less excessive bleeding (amen to the murder scene in my pants) and the reduction of severe cramps, headaches and nausea.
The other benefits that we now know are supported through other research – helps heart health, weight loss, and diabetic insulin issues. I am going to try it next month and report back. First findings will be followed by additional months as I do believe sometimes you need comparisons to get a full picture (or read – I am always skeptical so I will keep testing).
The best reviews I found are so far this:
Let me know if you try it !
The weather is frightful and there is very little that will keep a chick cool beyond a refreshing dip in the pool. The same could be said for feathered friends. Our run and coops are in the direct path of the afternoon sun. I have really considered this week, letting the girls go free range full time.
The benefits of course are plenty – bug control – ability to cool off – even better eggs – less feed. My concern: As I write this our neighborhood hawk family just landed on the oak above me.
Stress heat and exertion are all things that can lead to lower immune responses, illness and even death in chickens. On our forefathers farms hens were able to run in an area, find retreat from the heat and be able to escape predator approach. Backyards can be slightly more restrictive.
Through July and August please make sure your pets have plenty of water shade and options for cooling. Baby pools are an amazing way for dogs and other animals to get in and get wet to cool off. I love the idea in the photo above by placing some stacked stones or bricks to help everyone in and out. I’ll let you know if Sawyer and Huck explore dipping their turkey toes in the water!
Happy Fourth of July Everyone !
Something new from our tech pals at Kindle.
The Oasis is described as a slimmer, lighter, last longer new reader. Don’t we wish we all could say the same! In the family this new release is showcasing stronger glass and features that are designed to be put in vacation plans this summer. I really like the page flip buttons, and the no glare features. Conveniently it opens stock on June 30th 2016. Just in time to 2 day ship with Prime and have for a long weekend of reading !
A very fun surprise new to me, was the discovery of OverDrive. Here you can find Libraries across the US to check out media from including books and music. Obviously it is geared to help you get access to your own libraries locally that utilize its services for readers just like Kindle. What is super rad to me, is that most libraries across the US will offer temporary cards. When we would hit the road in the RV in the summer, I usually got a card everywhere we went. There is something really magical about checking out a book from a new library.
I haven’t started my summer reading list yet. I had Chicken-Geddon happening. Perhaps now that the infirmary is closed I can find some wonderful reads for hot days!
After three years, the Golden mother load of all compost was dug out.
A few fun facts:
1- Chicken poo is considered “hot” compost due to nitrates. This means in most composting bins it needs to be worked at least three month so it doesn’t burn your plants.
2- Our composting pile was only worked by the girls. I did no turning, wetting, or really any maintenance.
3- I am a lazy composter.
4- That’s alright, hens make amazing worker bees.
Hey! That’s alotta Hay!
Yeah way more than veggies like. After laying in the really well developed compost, I added hay from the second pile. Last step, till that ground until it looks like a fine potting soil.
This year’s first look:
Tomatoes – Cucumbers – Poll Beans – Squash – Peppers – Pumpkins
As the plants go in, remaining hay particulars and crushed eggshells will go around the plants in “wells”. This helping to keep out little slugs. They are not biological enhancements to my garden ! I did not seed start, or get any heirloom seeds from my favorite sources this year. Truly I ran out of time and rather than avoid the garden, I sourced organic heirloom plants from local stores this year.
We have not been able to pay attention to the garden the last two years. I am excited to get my hands in the dirt and put good things from my yard on the table.
In December 2015 Hubs and I bought a house. Not to live in, but to put a renter in.
There was a much larger plan that came crashing down and then changed yet again in the new year. During all of these up’s and down’s, not only did we survive, our marriage, and our finances, but the home that was an incredible bargain came through really well.
I never showcased our after photos of some pretty paint and new appliances. It’s a wonder what a sprinkle of tenderness can do. Tenderness and a barrier primer that eliminates resin from nicotine. Former owners, the original owners had smoked inside the home since 1961. You can imagine that layer of memories. Six months in and things are still getting updated a little at a time. I think the Country Cottage (as I am calling her) has had a pretty good start. At 4 bedrooms – she may be more than a cottage, but don’t let her know. She’s Chic !
My least favorite thing in the world to do is reach in to a nest box and palm a poopy egg. Why do some eggs come out perfectly smooth, and free of mud or poop, but others are a hot mess? We feed the ladies all natural organic everything. They have a beautiful coop, run and newly added barn. Their treats as well as environment are at the highest standards for good animal husbandry. I love to leave my eggs out on the counter to remind me every day how wonderful it is to have backyard chicks! You can’t do this once you rinse them however. Messy eggs are cleaned immediately and put in the fridge, and that makes my egg bowl very sad…
Reasons vary; from my own experience our eggs get most messy when:
- Seasonal Rains get the coop stinky and wet
- Parasites start to bloom and begin impacting the girls
- Health and nutrition are impacted by stress or circumstance
Weather – Wet and Stinky
When the weather is yucky your coop will be too, no matter what you do! Cautions such as raising watering stations, hanging food and getting roosts to get your ladies up off the ground all support their better health.
1- Install a walk strip right at the roost door. Walking over the jute will help brush off yuck before they hit the nest boxes.
2- Raise nest boxes so that waste has a chance to knock off when chooks jump up.
3- Install better drainage. Having to fix this now sucks but it is worth it.
The Attack of the Parasite
Even with the best intentions and care, little bugs will get to your girls. It is a very natural thing given what chooks live in. It can however be very moderated. Keeping the coop dry is step one. Step two – prevent and treat.
1- Pumpkin chunks have shown to help prevent worms. Everyone has a different opinion on pumpkin power. I love to watch the girls gobble them up.
2- Space/Clean bedding = most important. Some herbs even help and of course lots of options for dust baths, which are a chickens way of ridding lice and mites. Yes I use a little splash of DE in the coop. But it is UNDER the nest boxes, in the cracks and crevices and around the edges. I don’t apply it directly to my hens or their bedding.
3- Every Month In Spring – Green Goddess:
Eggs – Sage – Garlic – Rooster Booster DeWormer
This scramble of course if full of amazing protein so its great around stressful times like molting and brooding season. The wormer is something I have seen my girls pick out of their food. I will grind it, in of course its own dedicated grinder. Last I checked we didn’t need a deworming, and then sprinkle on a favorite snack like scrambled eggs.
Helpful things for Eggs free of gross –
Clean nest boxes once a week and place soft absorbent bedding inside
Probiotics are your best defense for Happy Hens and Poopers
Clean diets full of vitamins variation and minimal treats keep birds and their back ends healthy!
Prevention like Rooster booster and Pumpkin go a long way.