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A Sound Weekend

More a weekend of sound…. see what you think ?

Friday evening – pitch and putt club annual outing

Ended up in playing guitar in the resulting trad session

Saturday, I met Ger who was checking the mosture in barley

After I dropped into Philip who makes elder flower champagne

Sunday morning, listening to the birds at 6am

My first time to play pitch and putt in Ballyboughal

The hens needed some TLC and their house a spring clean

My thoughts on promoting horticulture after reading the weekends papers

Some time with Ella….

I also got a little relaxation in….. a little!

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And finally the rain stopped long enough to get the grass cut

the farmers market, portmarnock

On Sunday[17th May ’09] I took a trip out to my folks home town. I had heard about this new one… but I was unsure. I have this image in my head that there’s a lady who goes out on a Friday, takes a few turnips from the garden, pops ’em into a tweed satchel and pedals from Galway to sell her wares….I jest! But you get the image.. and as a result I’ve been disappointed sometimes for what actually was being sold. It was a market. But not a farmers market entirely. The case in Portmarnock was a lot more to my liking. It’s sill only 6 weeks old – but I liked it. People were happy! The rain was pouring on this particular day, but I really enjoyed it….

What do you do if you wanna give it a go….?
I met André Jenkinson. I had met him before. He runs the one in Portmarnock. He tells me it costs each stall holder €50 per day. He supplies the gazebo. You supply your tables and the rest… One thing to note is a one off insurance that must be held before you start. He says it costs about €250 for the year… but once again a chat with the man is probably best first.

What was Portmarnock like?
I was really impressed. It was lashing out of the heavens [on and off] but it was good. There are some people I must say hello to that I met and who I liked for varying reasons… but mainly their ethos, their products and well, for being nice people.

So hello to Margaret Murphy who had a great selection of plants ; hi to Dan McEvoy who had the flower and herb stall  – these were all grown by his family and also to Jenny  and ‘the man’ who trades as MY CHI – I love your crépes and I love that there is not one additive in your *real* homemade foods. It was delicious by the way.

There is also a guy there who does really *real* coffee. An absolute must. The cakes were adorable, the bread magnificient and the list goes on…. what can you do… pop on down, take a gander, say hello, let me know what you think…. thinking about doing your own – pop on down and have a natter – you’ll love it.

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the ultimate guide to chick-hens

big smile...

big smile...

Since I last wrote about ‘The Supremes’, things have really settled down. In the last ‘snappy’ post, the day they arrived, the set-up wasn’t exactly complete.

the complete hen runhomemade chicken hen perchchicken hen feature old tree stump

  • The chicken wire I got wasn’t 6 foot tall [more 3′ approximately] and I only had enough to go once around. I completed the upper level with that green tennis court kind of mesh… [see pics above].
  • I made a little perch for them using the pole off a broken sweeping brush. And I threw in an old lump of a tree stump as a sort of feature. They use both to sit upon.

I know that the hens food can be expensive; [depending on what you buy] AND as a result of that…. I now realise the amount of S*** one can be sold and how the products and prices are figured out is almost beyond me. In some cases, disgraceful to be very honest. It almost makes me a little angry. Bad bandwagon jumping where nurturing and encouragement should be given….

To that…. I’ve seen such varient & useless paraphernalia; most of which I can only describe as ‘dog kennels on stilts’ and all sorts of fancy bags of ‘super dooper hen feed’ and honestly, 99% of it is all crap. FACT. Something I’d hope the likes of Richard Corrigan will point out on his show…. ? Whats worse is a lot of these bandwagon jumping guys are getting in touch with me…. ? A lot of them don’t even have chickens!! Some have even taken the notes from my blog…. hmmmm 😯

It’s a ‘family’ way. It’s a way of living. It has F*** all to do with this word as the media constantly suggests it does [and as does The RTE/ Corrigan show]. Not when a shed costs €360. A good ‘buy right & buy one once’ shed by the way. In my honest experience – anyone who has hens, fowl, chickens…. etc… [and to all of the press out there….] It is cheaper to buy a tray of eggs, for the first few years at least. If you do write anything else – you’ve never lived the good life and know nothing about it.

feed for hens barleyhen water feederhen feeder

  • Back to the nice business… the big bag of barley 40kg costs about €10 in a good old style honest farm supplies shop. This and the kitchen green waste will feed them. They absolutely love potatoes and the peels…. but not so much carrots it seems 🙂 I might change this to a bag of wheat when that runs out.
  • The water container [white kind of upside down bucket – see pics above with a red bottom trim] is only for baby chicks so they don’t fall in. Any bucket that will hold water will do. Even I can be sold ‘stuff’ that is unnecessary…..
  • The steel feeder is necessary if you have a daily job… but keep it inside so as to keep the food dry – otherwise it turns to slop.
  • The four hens cost me €12 each. That will give you a good guide on how much to pay.
hen-eggs-just-layed

...all this for an egg

And after all of that… and just 11 days after arrival…… I got my first egg 🙂

There was a bit more of a hullabulooo in the run today [see pics below]. I stepped in to see the ‘nest’ being prepared. Poor thing didn’t know what was happening…. but all is good. The other guys were faffing around like…. like, well headless chickens I suppose… 😉

I can now walk in and pet them. The dogs have grown accustomed to them. It has however been a learning curve and a journey of sorts; yet,  one I am glad to have taken part in and I do love dearly, still. I always have

Most of my materials came for free… or I had them already. Maybe in a year or 2 it will pay for itself…. but not this year. But then, I am happy. I am 99.9% of the time a very happy chappy and that’s something no amount of money can buy 😆

the other hens want to see whats going onhens perparing to layhen making the nest

Was it worth the money? every penny! Would I recommend it? 110% Whatever you do and however you choose to do it…. have fun, smile and above all enjoy…. I promise you, for the first egg alone, it’s worth it!!

this video is courtesy of my friend Blaithín.

All my weblog articles of hens [so far] are here: