Another Red Barn, 2007, Oil on Panel, 12x16
We had a very busy and productive weekend. There was much running around, delivering kids here and there, and Doug cleaned out the garage, which was a major undertaking. After a winter of just winging things out into the garage from the back door of the house, it was a wreck, although we did have a path through the rubble from the house to the door outside. I worked in the gardens, raking out debris, pruning and tidying up in general. I didn't go into my studio all weekend and I don't even feel guilty about it. I have been making good progress on the work I need to have ready for two upcoming shows, so I haven't really needed to work on the weekends. Not yet, anyway.
Last week one of our hens went broody, meaning she was ready to sit on a clutch of eggs. I found a great website that told me what to do with her and so I set her all up in a separate space. She was fine for a few days and then she began to poop in the nest (bad) and when I checked her on Sunday morning I saw that she had broken two of the eggs (really bad). So she is back with the flock. I'll try again if another hen goes broody though, because I was surprisingly excited about having a new batch of chicks via the old fashioned way.
Then yesterday, my son and I managed to get Rooster Number One out of the chicken coop. I was planning on setting him up with a couple of the hens in a different hen house because the two roosters together, were competing with each other for their ladies affections and were getting pretty rough in the process. The hens all have bare patches on their backs and their heads, where the roosters hold them down while mating. Anyway, this rooster is my least favorite-he is nasty and has attacked me several times in the past when I go in the coop. After we let him out I thought I'd let him free range a bit (although he was mostly just hanging around the chicken run, trying to be in charge despite being outside of the fence) and then try to get him to the other space later on so I went back to gardening.
When I went to round him up I couldn't find him. We all wandered around the property looking for him but there was no trace of him. No pile of feathers, no chicken legs, no blood, nothing. The hens were really jittery and kept looking outside the fence (if only they could talk!). He didn't show up at the hen house at dusk to roost which was a bad sign. I suspect our dog Penny had something to do with it, as she is a notoriously excellent bird killer, but this is a 15lb. rooster and I didn't hear a squawk. While I am not entirely sad that Rooster Number One is probably dead, I admit to being seriously creeped out by his disappearance.
But we will move on. Already this morning, the hens seem much more relaxed without the presence of RNO, who ruled with an iron fist. They ate from my hand and I was able to pet a few of them without being threatened. The New Rooster Number One (formally known as Rooster Number Two), while a bit violent with his ladies, is a more docile guy in general and hopefully we will be friends.
So that's an exciting update on life on the farm. Sorry. I literally have nothing else to talk about today. I am planning to do some underpaintings this afternoon however, and I will put up some images of those tomorrow, in order to still qualify as an art blog. Heh.