Author / Melissa

Chickens Lessons from the Flock Stories from Our Nest

New Year Resolutions for Chicken Keepers

Happy New Year friends!  It’s hard to believe that we are ushering in a new year already. Did you have time to make any new year resolutions yet? It seems the most popular ones each year often have to do with getting into shape, eating better, or getting motivated to reach new goals. This got me thinking over the holidays, just what would be some good inspirational new year resolutions with inspiration from the chickens?  

Christmas Crafts Family Fun Holiday Seasons Winter

Make It: A Simple Citrus and Herb Garland

I have always loved creating handmade during the holiday time. I have to say, homemade gifts are sometimes the best gifts. Oranges have always been part of my Christmases since I was a little girl. Some of my earliest memories are making pomanders balls with my sisters at the kitchen table. Did you know that it is very easy to make your own dried orange slices from fresh fruit? These are the inspiration for this fresh citrus and herb garland. It smells delightful and is so pretty to hang across the window panes filled with fresh snow.

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.