Friday, January 31, 2020


Raising chickens is fun and relaxing, but when you raise them for eggs and meat, there comes a time when decisions have to be made.  It's the part I don't like.  My chickens are my pets to some degree, but they are also farm animals that have a purpose.  We have some that indeed are our pets and will be with us until they perish of natural causes.  The rest serve a purpose on our farm.  They provide my family with eggs and meat.  They live a good life and I know what goes into them that then goes into feeding my family.  They are processed humanely and we appreciate their sacrifice to feed us.  We are blessed to be able to have them and provide good food for our family.

When I first started with chickens, I had no idea I would become so hooked and that they would also provide us with peace and entertainment.  There's something to be said about just going out and spending time with them.  They are not only calming but also quite comical.  They have provided us with many laughs over the past 6 years.

This past year produced way more roosters than we need and now it has come time to cull a few more.  We processed a few about a week or so ago, and I was hoping to be able to keep the other two, but it looks like they will have to go too.  Maybe someday I can have a rooster sanctuary where I can keep a few extras, but not for now.  My heart breaks a little when I get so attached, but I also realize all the more how much I appreciate their provision for our family.

Tuesday, January 28, 2020

Hello Dolly

Here's my buddy, Dolly, again.  She just loves to jump up on my shoulder or back while I clean the coop.  She wanted to share a selfie today so I obliged, LOL.  She is the sweetest thing and so petite right now.  She is a Brahma mix. so I suspect that over the next year or so she will grow fairly large.  Brahma's are definitely slow to mature and fill out, but they are so beautiful when they do.  Her sister is I believe an Easter Egger mix and not quite as friendly, but cute nonetheless.  I think I created a monster because it is cute to a point that she likes to jump up on me and spend time with me.  Not so cute and fun when she has poopy feet!!

Monday, January 20, 2020

Spring is Around the Corner

Spring is most certainly almost here!  A few weeks ago the starlings were flocking in large numbers and now I see this.  This lonely dandelion flower in the midst of nothing.  I did not see any others anywhere else.  We have had a mild winter but the cold has reared its ugly head this past week.  We are back to winter temps and weather for a little bit, but last week this lone dandelion peeked through.

I know for us, once the Robins come out you know spring is really here, but for now, this tiny ray of sunshine was nice to see in the gloomy, shadowy days we have had lately.  I don't think I have ever seen a dandelion flower in January before.  It was unique and welcoming.

Looking forward to spring, sunshine, and new life in the chicken/duck yard.  What is your favorite season?  My favorite is the fall, but you just can't beat the sunny days after a bleak winter when spring is here.  Blessings to you.

Thursday, January 9, 2020

SchoolhouseTeachers REVIEW

Disclaimer: I received a FREE copy of this product through the HOMESCHOOL REVIEW CREW in exchange for my honest review. I was not required to write a positive review nor was I compensated in any other way.

Please note: affiliate links also included in this post

Another curriculum review year has begun and what better way to start but an updated review of  You are going to definitely want to check out the Ultimate PreK-12 Annual Membership.  It is an online homeschool program that includes classes, electives, homeschool parent support, homeschool planners, and access to World Book and RightNow Media.  It is an all-in-one full curriculum and the best part is that there is just one fee for your ENTIRE family and you have access to ALL grades!

Sample subjects
Certificates of completion available for different subjects and courses

I have been a member of SchoolhouseTeachers for many, many years now and boy have they come a LONG way.  I just love how they are continually improving and updating what they offer and you always have access to all the new updates while your membership is active.  You have the option for full-year, semester, and unit study courses.  There are no textbooks to buy, everything you need is available for printing or viewing in the chosen course.  The available lesson plans help to keep you on track and schedule your course appropriately.

Lesson Plan

Elementary Art Lessons

Elementary Art Sample Lesson page downloaded

Custom Schedule Builder

Once you log into your SchoolhouseTeachers Ultimate Membership account you quickly realize the vast amount of resources available to you.  The menus are user-friendly and video tutorials are available for many aspects of the site.  If for some reason you were to still find yourself lost or have questions you can easily email, chat with, or call customer support.  They are wonderful and very responsive to your needs.

Curriculum is coded to let you know what formats are covered

You can customize your courses for each child and browse by subject or grade level for options.  If you don't know where to start you can check out the scope and sequence link to see what your child needs to learn in any given year.  I love that there are direct links to the courses and resources from the scope and sequence lists.

Scope and Sequences

Need help with planning and/or grading?  No problem, you have access to printable planners and the Applecore recordkeeping program.  You have access to the Gold Applecore level that also includes the ability to produce transcripts with an Ultimate PreK-12 Annual Membership to  There is a vast amount of additional resources available that include:

  • Members Forum
  • Focused Learning Center
  • High School Help
  • Special Needs
  • Literacy Center
  • Holiday and Seasonal Content
  • Physical Education
  • Just for Parents
  • Parent eBook Library
  • Schoolhouse Expos
  • Monthly Menu
  • Trade Magazine
  • Certificate Library
  • Help Charts
Planning Tools
Focused Learning Center for extra help in subject areas

Literacy Center

It's easy to feel overwhelmed with the number of resources that are available to you but remember to keep it simple.  Use the video tutorials and focus on simply finding the courses for the grade levels you need.  All the other extra fun stuff can come later as you get familiar with the site and what it has to offer.  Especially in the area of the World Book and RightNow Media resources.  World Book is like a vast online encyclopedia with video and game resources.  RightNow Media is an excellent video resource for bible studies, apologetics, even kids' videos.

A few samples of tutorial videos

RightNow Media

World Book categories

Sample World Book section

World Book tutorial

I have both my 1st-grade daughter and 10th-grade son using the resources available and I just love how we can customize our lesson plans to fit our needs.  Sometimes we have used a subject for just supplementation and other times we have used it as our sole curriculum.  I especially love and appreciate the bible study and apologetic resources available.  When planning for this year I simply went to search for courses by grade level and picked out what we needed in each subject we needed.  I did refer back to the scope and sequence resource so I would not miss something we needed.  Especially for my high schooler.

Curriculum sample

One final thing I wanted to mention and just love is that you can easily create "collections" and then "bookmark" your chosen subjects into a collection.  I create a collection for each child that then has all of their subjects bookmarked to it so they (or I) can get to their classes quickly and easily.


There is so much more that could be covered but this is a pretty good synopsis of what you can expect.  I highly recommend the Ultimate PreK-12 Annual Membership for your family.  Yes, this is a review, but I was also a member LONG before I did reviews.  You can give it a test run for only $5 for your first month but they are running a sale through the end of January that you DO NOT want to miss.  Prices will be increasing on February 1, 2020.  The current sale price will be your locked-in annual membership fee for as long as you keep your membership.  You can't beat that!  I am an affiliate member and have included my affiliate links in this post.

You can connect with on FACEBOOK, TWITTER, and PINTEREST.  Please also be sure to check out the other reviews from my fellow Crew members to get more information about the membership, just click on the graphic link below.  You can also read my SchoolhouseTeachers reviews from 2017 and 2018.

Online Homeschooling For the Whole Family { Reviews}

Wednesday, January 8, 2020


Roosters, what's not to like?  So many people are so misinformed about these enchanting animals.  Enchanting?  Try terror, crazy, psychotic!  How many people do you know who have been around animals that have a "rooster" story to tell you.  People are afraid of roosters because of what they have either been told or personally experienced.  The problem is that while roosters have a job to do and aggressiveness is generally a good trait, they can be the sweetest things in your flock.

In my 6 years of raising chickens, I have found my boys to be some of my favorites.  I have learned that sweet and aggressive can go together and make a darn nice protector of your flock.  The catch is just who or what they are aggressive towards.  I have learned that if I have an aggressive cockerel (young rooster) or rooster and I cannot appeal to their calm side, then they get culled i.e. freezer camp).  No questions asked.  Any rooster that chooses to repeatedly challenge me or cause harm to my family is just not worth having around.  There are too many good ones out there.

Aggression along with many other traits is genetic in animals, chickens included.  If you find an aggressive streak in either your hens or roosters, you will most likely not want to use them in your breeding program.  I don't have a program currently to produce purebred offspring (for the most part_ so the chicks I brood are considered barnyard mixes.  We have had some very pretty results and so far I have had good egg-laying progeny in my pullets.  The bottom line is to be sure to only continue your lines with well-behaved roosters.  

If you haven't tried roosters before and you would like to hatch your own eggs then I would encourage you to find someone who has a direct hand in raising their young like I do and follow their suggestions on which one might make the best leader for your flock.  Happy hatching!
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