Monday, December 11, 2006

how it went

I think really well. I wish I wouldn't get so stressed out because half of the things I stress about, don't even matter, which I can only clearly see after the first guest arrives. So 24 people and 7 children came and went over 61/2 hours and I think everyone had a good time (at least they said they did). I cooked most of the day Saturday, since I didn't do the tree until Friday night and it took a lot longer than I expected. For food, I made pesto deviled eggs, roast beef/horseradish wraps, roasted red pepper wraps, meatballs in my homemade tomato preserves, hot artichoke spinach dip with a roasted garlic bread loaf, a cold spinach dip, a roasted red pepper dip with crackers and cut up veggies, these neat little blt pizzas, and a fig cake. And there were also chips and pretzels, chocolate, cookies, etc. from the store. The pesto deviled eggs were very popular and went very fast. I didn't even get one. Thankfully I had eaten a spoonful of the filling before washing the bowl that afternoon. People really like the house which made both my husband and I feel good. It shouldn't be important to get approval from other people, but it feels nice. I like seeing my home through other people eyes and knowing that they like it. Nothing was broken, nobody hurt (which with 7 children, only one of which was school aged, was a blessing), and there was nothing spilled on the new carpet. I did buy apple juice juice boxes for the kids just in case, knowing it wouldn't stain if spilled. The only thing I don't like about having parties is that it goes very, very fast and I never feel like I get to spend enough time with all my friends. I'm too busy running around trying to be the perfect hostess.

In other news, I think I have a sick chicken. Claire is losing her feathers. I thought I understood that chickens don't moult until their second fall. My chickens were born at the end of March and supposedly shouldn't molt until next fall. Is this right? I looked all over her yesterday for mites or some kind of insect on her skin, but there isn't anything. I'm really worried and will probably separate her from the rest and put her in the garage in the next day or so if it appears to be getting worse. Her appetite is good, she is running around same as ever, just losing feathers. Although the scales on her legs appear a little redder than ususal. Also, is my egg production supposed to be dwindling? Everything I read is different. Some say they should lay the same all the time unless they are sick. I thought I read that laying slows down as the days get shorter and will pick back up in February or so. Sometimes I get one egg, sometimes I get three. But I never get 5 a day anymore. I only have two chicken books but they contradict one another.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Glad to hear your party went well! Isn't it a relief.

My chickens are exactly the same age, and their egg production is down, too...though I suppose not terribly. They haven't moulted. Is Claire being pecked? That'd be the only thing I could think, unless she is moulting. Their egg production is supposed to dwindle when they she producing?

I think it is wild our chickens aren't technically chickens until they're a full year old. Your girls are pullets, missy! Dang, but what walks like a duck...

4:02 PM  
Blogger meresy_g said...

I don't know who is producing and who isn't. I only catch one on the nest every now and then. I don't think she is being pecked. They were all running free yesterday and she was just leaving a trail of feathers across the yard. It looks like neck and head feathers and now feathers around the poufy area around her legs. I have a call in to the Penn State ag extension office. I am probably being paranoid, but I just didn't think they were supposed to moult until they were over a year old.

4:12 PM  
Anonymous Sandy said...

Glad to hear the party went well. The food sounds really good. Will you post that egg recipe sometime, please?

5:23 PM  
Blogger cyndy said...

The party sounds like it was worth every minute of your prep time!

As for your Claire...I can only agree with you that she should be older before she molts, so perhaps she is just "different". At least she is behaving normally otherwise, and it sure sounds like molt. Do you think this wacky warm then cold then warm again weather has thrown her into a false molt?

My hens egg production always slows down at this time of year. We don't provide artificial light, so we wait until the solstice for production to pick up again...(mostly because we didn't get any pullets this spring ;-)

7:52 AM  
Blogger meresy_g said...

I'm thinking it is moult too and she is just different. There are no bugs that I can see, she is eating, active and appears just fine. I'll keep an eye on her just in case.

Pesto deviled eggs

6 hard-boiled eggs
1/4 cup mayonnaise
1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1 tablespoon pesto sauce
1 tablespoon parmesan cheese, grated
1/2 teaspoon lemon juice
capers (for garnish)

I ommited the capers cause I didn't have them and I added a heaping T of pesto.

10:30 AM  
Anonymous Liz said...

Sounds like a fabulous spread. Pesto deviled eggs...mmmmm.

I can't answer for the chickens, but the ducks always stop laying from mid December to February, unless you're pushing for maximum production with supplemental lighting. Just wait until spring (the season of the egg), you'll be swamped!

I'm with Cyndy that the weather is playing tricks on Claire.

11:39 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

We've had chickens molt late like this before. If she is eating and running around and acting "normal" then she probably is--normal I mean :-)
Good luck!

12:15 PM  

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