Monday, July 28, 2008

Update on Me & Chicken Butchering

Ok, it’s well past time for an update. I recently had a cardiac CT scan that showed up some blockages and a few days later had a cardiac catherization to check it out. Sure enough, I had two stents put in to give me a grand total of five. My cardiologist says next time it will be bypass surgery for me. Not good news. I am doing alright now other than getting used to my changes in medication. My ear infection slowly improving as is the infection in my leg from my last fall. My son Eric is giving me a scare since he went into the ER from chest pains Friday night. Earlier that day he moved a refrigerator from his house to mine all by himself. It seems that he only injured his chest and back muscles in doing so, according to the ER physician, but I hope that the scare it gave him will convince him in to getting a full cardiac check-up with a cardiologist. Bad tickers run in my family pretty strongly, and I worry about all of my kids and constantly harp at them to get checked out.

Yesterday was chicken butchering day here on the farm and we harvested most of our extra roosters (15) and a hen that had foot problems. Although one gimpy rooster we call Hop-a-long got a last minute reprieve from our granddaughter Aden, who insisted that we had to keep him because she had a dream about him. How can you possibly argue with the logic of that? So that leaves us still with 27 chickens. Angie and Eric brought all of their equipment over and did most of the work. They did let me do enough to feel helpful and I must admit to being sore and tired enough afterwards. I am very grateful for all of their hard work. Because what little I did was enough for me for one day (I missed my nap too). Grandma got to do enough babysitting to make her happy. And Aden and Ethan seemed to have fun playing in their pool and the new toys grandma got to keep them entertained. Even their dog Ginger had fun running around with her brother, our dog Harley. Poor Harley was exhausted last night because he doesn’t get off the chain much and all of that running really wore him out.

Today we plan on working on the nest boxes and maybe getting started at the job of finishing off the chicken carcasses in preparation for freezing.

The chicken ranch is much quieter now, but we do miss Mr. Rooster’s crowing, somewhat.

Saturday, July 19, 2008

My Last Fishing Trip...and fall

Eric Ryan and I made another trip to the pond to go fishing and again I took no camera. The little bluegill were about all that was biting and it took all of our skill just to catch a few decent sized ones. Then I started catching bullheads. AND I SPOTTED WALTER. When I threw my line out he started to go after it and then changed his mind in a hurry and swam off. He’s learning, maybe he will live to be a ripe old age after all.
In the mean time Eric had spotted a couple of big snapping turtles and had one start feeding on the bluegill he had caught. Since it was opening day of turtle season I told him to catch it and we would take it home for dinner. One bullhead and three bluegill later he finally caught it and it was huge, well over the leagal size of a 14 inch shell. I don’t know how his line kept from breaking. We managed to get a stringer around its head and Eric started for the truck, dragging his turtle behind him on its back. From many years of experience I have found this the easiest and safest method.

Now every time we have came to the pond I have managed to fall. And this time was no exception. Only this time I REALLY made a mess of myself. Re-injuring my poor old left shoulder, badly spraining my left thumb, and scraping my right shin like hamburger.
And the sad part was that I could have prevented it if I had taken my time crossing over a downed log. But NO, I was too excited about the turtle and getting it back home.
By the time we got the turtle put in a cage for the night and all of my fishing stuff put away I was in serious pain and my thumb was so swollen I couldn’t move it.
Ice didn’t seem to be helping either.

Wednesday morning was Lynn’s chiropractor visit and I got a quick treatment too. Then we went shopping. I was amazed at how much relief I got from that treatment on my shoulder and thumb and as the day went on it kept getting better.
Later I killed and cleaned the turtle. It was as much work as I remembered and the process took all afternoon. When I was done Lynn asked if it was worth all the trouble and I said least I hope so! I guess I will find out when it’s finally cooked.

Sadly again no photos and I even forgot to measure it. I MUST be getting senile too !!! NOPE. I'm blaming it on the medications !!!

And Life Goes On....

Well life sure has been “interesting” (from the old Chinese curse, ”may you lead an interesting life”.) these past 2 weeks. My cousin John (Uncle Sonny) Mihasci died and then a couple of days later my dad’s last and youngest brother Jerry followed suit. Two funerals in one week is too much. Then last Saturday we went to Angie’s to help butcher chickens. Eric had constructed a chicken plucker that I couldn’t wait to see in operation. And they had some other new methods of butchering that I was also curious about. See Angie’s blog site listed to the right as childreninthecorn.
Monday and Tuesday we spent in the garden weeding, watering, and picking beans and peas. Until son Eric called about going fishing. Well gardening was done for me. (see next Blog entry)
I also had to start increasing my blood pressure medications for my upcoming Cardiac CTA scan. By Tuesday I was taking four times my usual dose and was not feeling up to doing much, just too tired from the lowered blood pressure and the high heat and humidity sure didn’t help much either. Thursday I had the CTA scan and was wasted from the high amounts of medication it took to lower my heart-rate below 65. Friday my blood pressure was still low but heart rate is real high, but I went back on my normal meds anyway. I have to go to see my Dr. today (Friday) to get my raging ear infection re-checked so I will see what he has to say about my blood pressure too. And have him check out my scraped up leg.
Well the Dr. visit was scary. I wore shorts to the office so he would see my leg just in case I forgot to say something and when he walked into the room I thought he was going to have a heart attack. He stopped and stared and then immediately checked out my leg and said he should put me in the hospital for this infection. But decided to try and treat it first. I have to go back to him Tuesday for a follow up on it. Then he showed me the results from my CTA and had more bad news. At least 2 of my stents are blocked and another artery looked bad too. So he is setting me up for a cardiac catherization with my cardiologist. Then he looked in my ears and said the infection there wasn’t getting any better there either. So its more meds and wait.

Friday, July 11, 2008


What The Heck is growing on my potato plants? I've never seen anything like this before! Only a couple of plants have these on them.

When I first cut these open they were white inside, but a couple of minutes later they turned a slight brownish color. They have a delicate smell and taste of a potato, but look like a green cherry tomato without seeds and are solid.

HELP before my MUTANT garden takes over the world!!!!

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Chicken Chasers

Can you spot the chicken chasers in this photo?

How about now?
Or maybe here!
No, there!
We picked up the grandkids Saturday night and took them to the Fireworks Display which they enjoyed very much. Then kept them overnight, and EARLY Sunday morning they decided to go out with Grandma to let the chickens out. Well they must have decided that our chickens were a little too fat for their own good and started chasing them all over the yard. Even their refuge under the pine tree wasn't safe, nor was their pen or chicken coop either.
After repeated requests for them to leave the chickens alone and getting no response, we had to insist when Mr. Rooster (our Barnyard Bully) raced after an unsuspecting Aden and almost attacked her. Luckily he was stopped by Grandma's scream.
So then they had to find other ways to amuse themselves.
Like terrorizing the goldfish pond, by filling it with stones for the fishes, and sticks for Mr. Froggy (who was finally put outside after spending the winter and most of the spring in a terrarium, see earlier post X-mas Frog).
Later Ethan found other ways to amuse himself.
But it just wasn't as much fun, so.....

Sunday, July 6, 2008

4th of July Fish Fry

Well it was a beautiful day for an outside fish-fry. I spent the morning making my homemade version of the old KFC coleslaw for the event and defrosting tons of fish. We had about 200 bluegill fillets plus 40 largemouth bass fillets from last year, the whole 32 inch pike Eric caught this year and most of the 27 inch catfish I caught last year. Lynn was busy cleaning house and getting everything ready for the event. Before everyone started arriving we had to corral the very uncooperative chickens and pen them up. And put the dogs in their pen.

Eric, Andrea and Sarah came over early to help get things going. Eric and Lynn set up the picnic tables and prepared to fry French fries outside. Sarah, Andrea and I started breading fish to cook inside. Our best friends Beth and Jeff arrived along with their daughter Emily and her fiancé Chris.
Angie and Eric brought the grandkids Aden and Ethan plus our granddog Ginger. My buddy Dan also blessed us with his presence.

Well cooking got going into full swing. Sarah was pan frying fish, while Andrea and I took turns with the electric deep fryer and breading more fish. Lynn was deep frying French fries outside as fast as she could and when she was done with them she started frying fish too. When all was said and done we had enough leftovers to send everyone home with lots of fish. And Lynn was afraid we weren’t going to have enough....HA.

Aden and Ethan had fun hand feeding leftover French fries to the chickens and I think their dog had plenty too. Everyone was stuffed so I think it was a successful event. Even Andrea who doesn’t really care for fish seemed to enjoy the meal. Sarah fell in love with the pike and I am sure she will be after her brother to go catch more.

I’ve had 2 meals of leftover fish and still have enough for 2 more, and I’ll be eating coleslaw all week.
And again, I failed to take any pictures.