Sue’s New Eggs, Hen Pecking

The fertile Marans eggs arrived in  the mail today!

They were all well-packaged, and all six of them arrived whole and uncracked.

They’re not quite as large as Ginger’s freakishly Jumbo eggs, but their color is excellent.

I set up a broody box for Sue in the upstairs bathroom, where we raised the Ameracuana chicks this spring.  The other hens were sitting on top of her to lay eggs in the favorite nest!

This looks like two roosters getting in a fight… but I swear the big black one with the tall comb (Jeanette) has given us an egg every day for the past two months. I love how she spits out a mouth full of feathers at about 0:36.  Sorry about the blurry focus!

Finally, the little banty rooster pushes the right “submit” button, and Jeanette bows down. He is suddenly puzzled… like the amorous Dachsund who finds that the neighbor’s Great Dane is willing, but doesn’t know how to go about it. He tries to mount her from a couple of different angles, then gives up.

Our Little Bantam… hen?

Today, for the first time, I saw Little Bit crow.

So far, at least, it’s really low-volume; I hope we don’t end up with a full-on rooster crow, because they’re not allowed in the City of Dallas.  If “she” turns out to be a “he,” we may have to get rid of her.

One Banty Hen, One Broody Hen

I finally got a good shot of Little Bit.  She is about the size of a pigeon.

Sue has decided to go broody.  She was setting eggs when we got her from Bageniece Farms.  Most of the hens we have are from breeds that don’t tend to go broody, and I’m hopeful that she’ll turn out to be a good momma hen.  Of course, without a rooster, she’s not sitting on eggs that will hatch – so I ordered some fertile eggs through Ebay.

I love the way she fluffs up her ruff.  What you can’t see, is that she’s pecking my hand!  She hasn’t hurt me at all, but she’s made it clear that failure to obey the warning peck will result in a more aggressive one.

Looking at pictures and reading, I think Sue may be (at least partly) a breed called Golden Phoenix.  She has the right shape and coloring, they’re a breed that tends toward broodiness, and they tend to roost high up.  The first couple of weeks, we kept having to fetch her out of the honeysuckle on the fence and tuck her into the hen house!

Anybody recognize this hem?

A friend of mine is working on writing a description of a textile, and is having trouble describing the hem.  I’ve seen similar turned-scallop technique in San-Blas applique, but I don’t know if there’s an English term that describes this.

This is showing the back.  You can see where the brighter printed color from the front is turned over and hand-stitched down in a little reverse scallop.

Here’s a close-up.  The textile comes from Rajasthan, in India.  I did find this post, which shows pictures that look like they have a similar edge.


Today was the holiday party for the Rainbow Garden Club – Dallas’s gay gardening group.  I had to take something fabulous for the potluck.

I started with a pound of deli ham, a pack of sliced Swiss cheese, a pack with capicola, calabrese, and peppered salami, two bricks of cream cheese, some cherry tomatoes, and some jarred roasted red pepper.  From the garden, I added two varieties of purple mustard (both rolled up with the meats, and as garnishes on the plate), green onion, and bright-colored chard leaves to give it a pretty base.  The crowning glory – some of Chris’s spice pickles.

We have received little jars of these from Chris’s Grandma Campbell for years, and always assumed they were made from apples – but this year, he got the recipe, and they’re made from over-ripe cucumbers.  We made a huge double batch, and have enjoyed them immensely.  They’re an intensive process, involving a lime bath and then six days of syrup-boiling… but definitely worth it.  They were a hit at the party!