In addition to the awesome day trips we took to Wilderness, Ponce and Maricao, we also had lots of fun in Rincón at the Spanish Wall, Farmer’s Market, Art Walk, at a couple of events and just hanging out at the house. Here are a few snapshots that didn’t quite make it into a post on their own, but that were pretty cool.
Now that we are hosting the Future Egg-Layers of America (or at least a few in Rincón, Puerto Rico) with us in a plastic tub in our 300 sq. foot cabana along with Kitty we are starting to max out space and feel the chirping motivation to start on the chicken coop. Everyone gets along fine in the cabana including Kitty because he is used to us having chicks in the house from when we had them in Greeley.
The plan is to move them from the cabana into the bath tub that was left over from the bathroom take-down in about 2 weeks and then at about 2 months into the coop. When they are full-sized chickens (around 4-6 months) we will then let them free range and use the coop as a night shelter and laying area.
Kitty and the area we have chosen for the coop
We also plan on growing their supplemental food for when they need a little extra in addition to all the juicy bugs and grasses they will find, like this venomous centipede we found in the area we were clearing for the coop. More motivation for getting them outside and pecking away: fewer of these things! Yeek
The theme of the last few days has been Chopped. Chopped is one of our favorite shows, so we download it and watch it on the laptop when we need a break. It is a fun show that starts with a mystery basket of four strange ingredients and the chefs are supposed to create tasty, creative meals with them. It is a lot like how we cook here. You never know what new interesting ingredients will be at the store or what they will be out of or what we will find on the property, and since we have no stove, we always have to think of creative uses. Lately it has been chopped veggies, rice, fish and ginger all thrown together in the rice cooker for lunch (and sometimes dinner) and chopped coconuts (and coconut water) and starfruit with coffee for breakfast.
But beyond TV shows, the Chopped theme has been present in other ways as well. Britton managed to process all the wood from the torn down deck bathroom by separating the good pieces that will be used for the chicken/turkey coop and chopping and bagging all the unusable pieces.
When that was all finished, we went on to the next chopping project of chopping down more trees to clear the land for our orchard and poultry. Britton had been doing it all by hand with just a handsaw or bowsaw and while he was getting much stronger and faster, it was still a slow process. At Home Depot we saw a chainsaw marked down from over $200 to $99 and so we thought that would be very helpful. It also makes the job inherently more dangerous and while Britton took safety precautions, he still managed to chop a little portion of the tip of his thumb when we was adjusting the chain blades.
But that was a much better warning than if the machine had been on. One day we worked for about 6 hours under these trees. I used the loppers and took down the small trees and vines that are under 2 inches in diameter and cleared the area for Britton to work chopping and piling. I also took the hose around to all our baby transplant trees. This property will take everything that we have, but it is becoming more and more manageable every day and we enjoy the work, believe it or not.