Friday, July 17, 2015

Glorious Liquid Gold

Despite our drought here in California and sever water cut backs. Despite the fact that both our hives swarmed because we let them get too crowded (the population got bigger than we had given them room for) and half our bees flew away. Despite the weeks that went by during which one hive had no queen laying eggs and a declining population. Despite all that, we just harvest 125 pounds of honey from our two bee hives, and there is a lot more still in their hives, and they are still bringing in the nectar. Maybe we'll still have more to harvest this year, maybe not. But wow. We have two nearly full 6-gallon buckets plus the quart jars we already bottled. I love our bees, they have been gentle and busy this year. We have enough to sell some this year and maybe recoup a little of the money we've put into those bees.
Bees and now chickens. Clothes hung on the clothes line. Compost bin constantly being turned and filled. Hand me downs. I feel so pioneer-ish. Thank havens for indoor plumbing, toilets, hot showers, electricity, automobiles, air conditioning. I love modern conveniences. A give and take. Pick and choose. Oh and clothes- scratch that, disposable diapers. Those are my absolute must luxury item. I don't want to live without them. I'd give up the dishwasher before I give up my Luvs. :) Seriously. 

I am a perfectionist and I must be crazy

   I must have thought for a moment that my life isn't crazy enough when I fell for the idea of raising chickens. We don't want a dog, or a cat, or any pets for that matter, but for some reason we, or maybe I, wanted chickens. We have bees, why not chickens. After taking care of our friends' flock for a week and seeing that really there isn't a ton to do, we decided to go for it. What was I thinking?
  I don't know what I was thinking and we don't even have the birds yet. Our plan was to get the coop built in time for the county fair and buy some there. Well, it didn't get built in time. Three days before the fair ended I went bonkers and thought I could finish it all. Oh man, that was two weeks ago. I have spent HOURS working on this thing. I designed it, came up with a plan, a list, and multiple headaches. And it still isn't done. So often this last week I have told myself "its strong enough" (even though I didn't frame it the right way) "it's a chicken coop, it doesn't have to be perfect" (perfectionist me says that it's not good enough, not exactly right, done the right way, it's not totally plumb, the list goes on) but no matter how often I think that it doesn't really matter, it does to me. And to top it all off, I found last night the plans (with a few slight differences) for a coop just like mine. Had I found that 2 months ago, this coop would have been done so long ago. Oh the injustice of it all. This is one of my big struggles in life, my weakness rearing its ugly head. I have to be right, do it right, I can't be wrong, about anything. That's the one thing I remember my 5th grade teacher telling me "December you don't always have to be right." But I do, it's wired in me to be right and to churn and stew and worry and get in a tizzy if I am not right, or I did it wrong, even if it really doesn't matter.
  I hope I love these darn chickens when we get them or all I will think is I spent how many hours and how much money for this disaster. I just want it all to be done and over and then enjoy those darn birds. I don't want to constantly be thinking about how much each of those little eggs is really costing. And how much cheaper it is just to buy those stinking eggs. Oh I hope ours don't stink.
  What did I get us into?? What if we want to go on vacation? Now we have pets, oh the joy of no longer being free. I am complaining, sorry. But then again we go on vacation one time a year. or at least for the last few years that has been the case. we don't go anywhere so why am I worried about it. It'll be good. The coop won't fall apart, it won't rot to the ground, it cost a little more than taking a woodworking class and I got a coop. And I don't have 20 years woodworking or construction experience, how can I think that I will do it perfectly? Especially when I find the perfect plans three weeks into building it. Even the color is wrong, too light, see... focusing on the negative. I've got to stop doing that.