It has been awhile since I have written about what's going on at Blue Moon Cottage. I finally received enough eggs in one week to fill up my first package (thanks girls!). I gave the very first package to my next door neighbor. He was pleased to have them and said they were beautiful! Mr. Tucker gives me pretty homegrown squash and tomatoes from his garden and recently a huge pumpkin! I am trying to find the time to glean all the good stuff from inside, make a couple of pies, roast the seeds, and feed the rest to the chickens.
The days and nights have turned chillier and I have been keeping an eye on the chicks. This past week - one of the mornings was particularly cold and I found the two Polish girls hunched over and not moving when I went out at 6:00 a.m. to check on them. I immediately went back in the house to find the infra red heat lamp that I used on their brooder and hung it up in the coop. Ahhhh, they liked that. I don't keep it on constantly, just when it is going to be in the 30s or below.
Today when I went home at lunchtime I discovered that FINALLY someone was using a nesting box! I have this row of three great nesting boxes filled with fresh straw and fake eggs, and have put all the girls in there hoping they would get the idea - but no, they continue to lay behind the feed can where they sleep. Truly was in one of them and scratching around and throwing straw out. It'll be fun to go home this afternoon and find a REAL egg in there. Hey, the egg count is now up to 62!!!! I've been eating a lot of them myself but sharing as well. It's nice how a little package of fresh eggs can put a smile on someone's face. I can name a few faces that could stand that.
I've included a picture here of my Lantana and my Mexican Petunia (although I'm not quite convinced that's the real name). Both of these were picked up in my most favorite of places - Okracoke Island. I have admired the Mexican Petunia's deep purple for 3 years now and always bring home a little sprig to root from the hotel where I stay. None of them have survived. So this year - I dug up two pieces that included root and it has been doing great. Another plant that I see everywhere at OI is Lantana. It's everywhere - planted in huge pots outside of little shops and growing in cottage yards. I found some at the True Value Hardware store in Avon (I think). I was tickled to find that - it reminds me a bit of Candy Tuft except that this is pink with clusters of yellow flowers in the middle. I also saw some orange with a yellow center planted down there. I have taken such special care of these two flowers since I brought them home in July and they have quadrupled in size. Now that it's getting cold, I can't decide what to do with them. I think I'll probably bring the whole pot in and sit it next to the basement door where it will be warmer and get some light. I have to remember to keep it moist though. In the spring I will bring it out for planting in the yard.