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winter projects. these are the type of things i make in down time during the winter months.

western jacket very heavy, very warm

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just a wednesday

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got a little bit of garden work to do today.  need to pull out the new potatoes, more to plant and get started before monsoon gets here.  i should have tomatoes soon, and broccoli, and zuchinni.  every thing is growing great, in spite of the lack of water.  the birds are nesting everywhere.  two hens are sitting eggs for the first time and roosters are just noisy.  my youngest pup got snake bit last saturday morning.  cant tell you how to treat snake bites but what we do is feed them lard as soon as you can get it down them.  its an old texas remedy that the old timers brought here long ago.  of the four that have been bit out here they have all survived with no repercutions.  katchina was very sick.  she is a border collie and our smallest dog but she is healing at the wound and moving around, granted only on three legs most of the time.  along with the lard is benadryl every four hours and baby aspirin for the pain.  keep them calm and contained and watch for respiratory shut downs in the first day.  kachina stopped breathing several times but i was with her and a little stimulation helps them draw a breath and keep breathing.  this affected her more than the bigger dogs and i had to watch her really well.  im so proud of her, just cant keep a border collie down for long, they have a natural inclanation to run and round up any thing they can.  two weeks ago i saw her back on the neighbors hill rounding up about 20 head of his cattle.  she didnt want them there so she took them over the hill, out of sight out of mind.  she loves racing my car to the neighbors house.  hope she will be able to do this again.  too early to tell how much tissue damage was done to the paw.  will know soon though.  very crazy week.   my time table just got moved up for outside completions on projects, need to have things done within the next couple weeks.  it will be a push, got a little roof repair to do to seal a leak in the hallway.  and still trying to get the rest of porch awning on.  about to finish up the root cellar and the dogs would be happy if i dont seal in the wood storage shed, they think i built them a very big dog house, crazy dogs. the cat has decided he likes it outside, cant keep him in anymore. wants to roam.  had to start shutting the gate to keep them all in the compound because of the snakes. western diamond back are what we usually have here. nasty little biters.  they dont like the compounds because of lack of protection, thats why we keep the yards cleared around the houses.  much easier to see them. thats the update for this week. everybody have a good one.

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entrance to new root cellar.

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wednesday, awning,

whoo hoo half the awning is up.  made for a warm week with nothing blocking the patio door, had to pull the backed curtains over, that helped.  at least the dogs had somewhere to get out of the heat.  friend gave me enough bags to finish the outside of the root cellar, next week maybe.  gotta get new pics again, this garden is unbelievable this year.  between heat and lack of water its usually a fight to get anything to produce but this year everything is working together and i hope i can get it thru to monsoon.  if so im gonna be very busy canning and dehydrating.  speaking of;  tried tomatoes and onions, zuchinni and bell peppers, all dried very well.  that should save some space in the root cellar come fall. 
the silly yellow hen stopped going back and forth.  now i know why, she wanted the perfect place to sit her eggs.   she has been brooding for about a week and a half now, seems very happy with her new mission in life.. and also kinda cute.  the stray pup got saved from the gun and a gentleman in town has a new housemate, it will be a rocky road for both of them but time fixes a lotta stuff.  i wish him luck.
thing settling back to normal, amazing what another dog can to to the routines.  especially a hyper young puppy. the bulk of the hummers have moved on, and even most of the migraiting birds.  still got the regulars, quail, roadrunner, doves, cow birds, cardinals sparrows thrashers, and mocking birds.
let me know what you would like to know about the america southwest desert.

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made some shade for new onions and turnips and cabbage, they were suffering in too much heat.  doing great now.

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crappy week

lotsa issues this week,   got a stray dog and it stayed around.  pretty baby, young one but just unable to catch it or trap it for the shelter.  animal control was called in for help but that was unsuccessfull but she did try to help.   they darted it today but not enough trank for us to track it down last resort is to put it down, now its injured from the dart that is still in its hinny.  i guess someone is gonna come out tomarow to do the job.  i just want to be somewhere else.   we have all gotten attached to the tough little devil.  but today was tough on him and havent seen him all evening.  he may have moved on. we walked him down for three and  a half hours yesterday and another two today.  i think he said enough is enough.  dont blame him.  how sad.  he had some manners, he knew no.  but trying to socialize a pup thats been on its own is a
hard battle.  he sure did like eating twice a day though.
the garden is going crazy.   zucchini forming, broccoli is 10 inches tall, tomatoes doing well, and the last garden is catching up with the early plantings, potatoes in bloom. garlic and onions are getting very big.  im gonna need to can before i get enough jars. 
root cellar is sealed inside, still insulating outside.  got metal panels for porch roof, gonna try to start hanging those this week, weather is heating up and june will be toasty, would like to be done with awning before then. i think ill need the shade. then monsoon will follow with the summer rains in july or there abouts.
lost a hen last week not sure why.  down to two roosters an four hens.  my pretty yellow hen cant decide where she wants to live, ping pongs back and forth from one pen to the other, still havent figured out how she is doing that but she is very consistant in her travels.
finally got the bird pond relocated inside the compound.   the last time the cows passed thru one of them went thru the pond and punch a hole in the liner.  repairs made and relocated, the birds like it because its under the tree. the water stays cooler and doesnt evaporate as fast.  the dogs like it just cause they like to play in the water.  try to catch up later.  how does your garden grow?

very messy patio. everything goes somewhere that is not done yet.

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Update

The birds are happy and well fed.  I put a couple fresh pears in the trees and the orioles went crazy.  the root cellar is moving along, starting to close it in on the inside today.  The garden is doing well.  Need to reseed a few places thanks to the birds.  The dogs are happy and full of kisses this morning. In the fifties now heading to eighties today and another beautiful arizona day.  Want to spend some time today working on the plans for a small greenhouse addition, probably a project for next spring.  Think this years schedule is a wee bit full. The dehydrating onions worked beautifully.  I now have a quart of dried onions instead of a very large cake pan and i think ill try tomatoes next.   send me some comments, lets talk.

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Ckickens, root cellar, and updates

The chickens have been a test this week.  Some have become very good at changing pens.  Separated a couple to make pretty babies.  It seems she didnt care for that rooster.  Found her in the other pen the next morning and she stood her ground, she is not going back,  oh well, revise the plan.  Two roosters, four hens, two each way.  Seems to have settled into place now.  Letting the eggs stack for a week to see if anybody wants to sit some eggs.  So far not a lot of brooding going on.  Things a little slow this week.  Took a couple falls and now im nursing injuries.  Thing about knees that need replaced is you never know when they will just drop you.  Slammed me into a t post on the fence, not only tore up the knee, didnt do much for the shoulder either.  But i must say the colors arriving with this bruise are quite stunning, blacks an blues yellows and greens. Oh well, not the first fall, and definately not the last.  Did get a little work done yesterday.  New plants in the ground. Everything seems to be sprouting up this week.  Got most of the root cellar boarded up inside, still working on the outside. Gonna try to finish inside tomarow.  The potatoes an onion planted so early i have gone to blooms this week with potatoes and the onions cross pollinated and i have plenty of seed pods for winter planting. Tarped several of the raised beds, the sun out here can be brutal on young plants, they seem happier now.  A lot of coyotes roaming around at night now and this week three nights in a row the deer posse passed thru.  Their numbers with the babies are about 20 now.  Very beautiful to sit and watch them graze. At least till the dogs scared them, then they were leaping everywhere.  Will post new pics of the cellar this week.  Came up with an idea for more water storage for monsoon, gonna draw that out this week.  Put in a new gate on north side and one to go on the south side yet.  The north gate is working out well but the dogs broke tbe lock already, ive got to think pyrennes, saint bernards, not just border collie.  Ill add that to the list.  Have a good week and report in your off grid news.

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