Author / Melissa

Giveaways

Giveaway: Omlet’s Qute Home for Hamsters

I’ve have had the pleasure of partnering with Omlet for the past two years. They have been such a supportive sponsor to me and also very generous with their products. One of my favorite things that I like to do for you all is to review and share their products. You can imagine my delight to find a Qute on the doorstep a few weeks ago. It is the “cutest” hamster cage that I had ever seen! I knew that it would be perfect for my daughter’s friend’s pet hamster, Hammy and I could not wait to share it with her.

Christmas Crafts Holiday Projects Seasons Winter

Make It: Farmhouse Christmas Tree Skirt

I love Christmas. It’s actually one of my favorite holidays.  Each year, we spend time as a family crafting because I love creating handmade items. Some of those items are gifts while others become a part of our decorations year after year. As a result, I wanted to share how to create a new Christmas tree skirt for your home. I thought it would be fun to bring in the trendy farmhouse chic look and come up with an easy and inexpensive and easy way to pretty up the tree this year.  I had so much fun making this tree skirt that I thought you might like to make one too!

Chickens Lessons from the Flock Stories from Our Nest

Fixing a Hole in My Heart

I’ve been trying. I really have.  Grief is a funny thing.  One minute it’s not there and the next minute you find yourself with tears streaming down your face for no particular reason. Like falling leaves, the tears just simply come when you are walking out the mailbox, cooking dinner, spending time with loved ones. They just come. I guess you could say I have been heartbroken. As I looks back, I was lucky. It took me many years until I had to experience this deep kind of grief. I thought that I knew grief from so many years of helping others through it in my nursing career, saying goodbye to loved ones, grandparents, aunts, uncles and favorite pets. For the first time, I can honestly say that I have a hole in my heart.

Chickens Coop Care Health Issues Seasonal Care

How Much Should I Be Feeding My Backyard Chickens?

I actually get this question quite a bit.  So, it seemed only prudent to write a post about chickens and their eating habits.  By now, I’m sure that you have figured out that chickens know what they like.  They also are sometimes hesitant to try new things, like the time I plopped a whole pumpkin into the chicken run. Chickens are actually pretty easy to care for and that includes feeding backyard chickens. Did you know that chickens will not overeat?

Gardening Plants

How to Harvest and Dry Beans from the Garden

We tend to grow lots of beans in the garden and this year we tried a new variety, Chocolate Runner Beans. I absolutely adore growing these beans. They trellis well and are abundant.  You can eat the beans fresh from the vine or dry them for use later.  Today, I wanted to share with you how easy it is to dry beans. The process is actually pretty simple. To use the dried beans, soak them overnight in water and then try adding them to your favorite recipes.  Some of ours include soups.

Giveaways

Giveaway: Literary Chickens

Good morning! I have a special treat for you.  As you know, I was honored to be one of two essayists for Beth Moon’s new book, Literary Chickens. I was so thrilled to be a part of this project as it celebrates all things chicken. This coffee table size book is for any chicken lover and I am giving away 5 signed copies of Literary Chickens to celebrate the book’s publication this week.

Findings Gardening Plants Projects

Grow Up: Vertical Gardening with Trellises

We’ve been in the new house for two years. As many of you know gardening is a labor of love. We brought the chicken coop over from the old house and have been slowly creating a raised bed garden adjacent to the cottage garden. One of the best way that I have found to maximize growing space is to think vertically. Taking advantage of veggies that like to climb up trellises can greatly affect your produce yields. I also love that the veggies and fruits growing on the upper portions of the trellises are far from the reaches of hungry chickens.  These obelisks were my faves this growing season and I just had to share more.

Stories from Our Nest

Life’s Seasons

Hello friends.  I wanted to take a moment to share the past few months with you. Life has thrown us an unexpected curve.  We lost my Dad of 28 years unexpectedly this summer after dealing with some things since spring. It threw us all into a tail spin and all of us went into survival mode. It was a loss that rippled across all of our lives and the most difficult of all was watching my children have to suffer as they did. Their hearts were broken and mine broke even more than I though possible watching my own children learn how to grieve and rebound from loss.

Chickens

Essayist for Literary Chickens

Good morning folks! I sometimes feel as though I have been under a rock, but truthfully, so much as been going on.  School is out and I have two kiddos home with me and we have been having a blast planning summer fun! I have also been incredibly busy trying to get my gardens ready, as they will be on tour for this year’s Cape Cod Hydrangea Festival. I think I am almost done. We spread 15 yards of mulch last week for part of the finishing touches. If you are on Cape, maybe you can make it! In other fun and exciting news, I am collaborating on a new chicken photography book by world-renowned photographer Beth Moon called Literary Chickens.

Findings Gardening Stories from Our Nest

Discovered: A Secret Nest in the Window Box

Spring has taken it’s sweet time to come to Cape Cod. Still with temperatures in the 40s at night- mid May, it seems as though everything is stalled. Beautiful annuals that usually spill from the window boxes on the front of my home were also delayed. The window boxes lay dormant and lifeless. Still filled with dead, brown and decaying evergreen branches, it was time to do some thing about it.  This was not the first time, but little did I expect to discover a bird’s nest.