empty spaces

many years ago, we lived next to a strange building. it was a grand victorian, a queen among the painted ladies, and had once been a prodigious home. in the years i knew her, she was an empty, echoing shell, an abandoned nursing home, her walls saturated with age and sadness. the locks weren't very … Continue reading empty spaces

freedom of the garden

a couple of weeks ago, one of my old hens disappeared in the middle of the day. she was a dear thing, a sweet soul that would spend the whole day picking along in your wake if you were outside. she had a limp in old age, the wages of a leg injury in her … Continue reading freedom of the garden

error: spring not found

this intrepid blogger, hereinafter dubbed mud maiden, has just returned from a two week family vacation to california. while i was gone, the three or four feet of snow melted, leaving behind the muddy brown landscape of early vermont spring, an endless carpet of matted soggy brown grass, earthy squishiness, and manure that takes a … Continue reading error: spring not found

chickenasaurus rex

i find it interesting how many people i meet who are deathly afraid of the average hen. at first i was perplexed, but the longer i know chickens (and now ducks), the less i am chagrined at the monkeybrain twitch that causes people to read "poultry" as "thunderlizard" and do without, thank you very much … Continue reading chickenasaurus rex

animals amok!

it has been rifle season, so of course the horses have been getting out and wandering in the woods. this is courtesy of soni, who is undaunted by the electric fence and has been breaking it on a corner twice a day, every day for three days. they all go to the shed, help themselves … Continue reading animals amok!

make way for ducklings

it's been really wet in the northeast US this year, to the extent that i never actually got my garden planted in the spring. we have clay to clay/loam soil which is prone to compaction and it just plain never dried out enough for me to turn all the soil. the things planted in raised … Continue reading make way for ducklings

musical dogs

willow is still with us. like the old codger in monty python and the holy grail, she's stubbornly "not dead yet" and every time i think it's time to load her on the plague cart, she decides it's a fine time to go for a walk (and she does), followed by days of badness, inability to … Continue reading musical dogs

rooster redux

i lost my primary rooster last night. he was a silkie, a little blue fireball named ozzer who inspired fear in all the other roosters. all man, that one. this means that the pecking order will need to be reestablished, which is uncomfortable from a human standpoint. all the bullying, all the pecking and infighting. … Continue reading rooster redux

on living rural (and introversion), v.1

every once in a while, i come across an article or throwaway line about what dumb yokels country folk are. these get right the hell up my nose, because they're inevitably couched in this smug, hipster philosophy that we just don't know any better. like, it can never be a conscious choice to live out … Continue reading on living rural (and introversion), v.1

gratuitous chicken pictures: a chronological slideshow from the department of backstory

while putting together an earlier post, i had to go to my all-but-defunct photobucket account and i found a lot of pictures there that i'd forgotten about entirely. they're pictures that i posted long ago on a private journal, so friends and family have likely seen them before. for everyone else, this is exactly like … Continue reading gratuitous chicken pictures: a chronological slideshow from the department of backstory