Monthly Archives: February 2012

Backyard Hens …

Backyard Chickens

Posted by Teri

Backyard Hens

I have wanted my own flock for some time now. Jay kept saying he does not want to get into the chicken business (he knows who will end up tending MY chickens, and his name starts with J!). Thank goodness for grown sons. My eldest, Eric, homesteads at the south end of our 4 acres and shares my desire to feed myself through farming. Before I knew it a coop went up and the word was out that we were looking for chickens. It is amazing what this island community will provide, you just have to ask. Great friends on Lopez had an extra hen, a Golden Laced Wyandotte, she’s a beauty!. Within 5 days of coop construction, Eric had collected 5 hens with more promised as they hatched. We are in the egg business. I have a feeling, if this pace keeps up, I will be blogging egg recipes and asking for your favorite way to prepare eggs! 

One of my favorite magazines, Organic Gardening, had a section on chickens (June/July 2010) naming pros and cons and discussing best backyard breeds, www.orgaincgardening.com.

Now I am finding chicken information everywhere. Island Hardware www.islandhardware.com  had a stack of 2012 WSDA Calendars- Birds of Washington, chock full of tips, dos and don’ts for a healthy flock. The WSU Avian Health & Food Safety Laboratory will conduct diagnostic testing for backyard poultry that die. Call 1-800-606-3056 for information.  The Avian Health Program also offers two free online training courses: Avian Disease Prevention Training Course and Poultry 101 Training Course. http://agr.wa.gov/FoodAnimal/AvianHealth/AvianCertificationTraining.aspx

Looking to enjoy the simple life on beautiful Orcas Island? Contact T Williams Realty – we’ll help you find your way home.

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by | February 27, 2012 · 4:59 pm

Lunch at Goat Leap Treehouse

Posted by Sandi

Susan Scott at her treehouse on Orcas Island

Susan and friends

For Valentine’s Day my friend Susan treated me to lunch at her treehouse on the east side of Orcas Island. Susan Scott is no ordinary person, nor does she serve an ordinary lunch (green curry something-or-other and a fresh mango salad), so why would she have anything other than an extraordinary house?

When you arrive at Goat Leap and cross the bridge to her treehouse, you’re transported to a magical, playful world: An artful assemblage of funky materials – galvanized metal, homosote walls, reclaimed finds – wide plank flooring, old doors, rustic cabinet fronts, amidst bark-on timbers, cozy furnishings and colorful art. A kaleidoscope of fun, anchored in good design. Kudos to the architect – Mira Jean Steinbrecher, Susan and her design friends (including Pam at Red Ticking) for pulling it all together.

Although the treehouse has been featured in a magazine, this is not a pretentious showplace. Rather it’s a kick your shoes off, uncork another bottle and enjoy lap dances from her three pooches – Hamish, Tallulah and Dobby. It’s one of those places where everything is just so, and nothing is. A space that soothes the soul and makes your heart sing. Enjoy the tour, and thank you Susan!

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Looking to enjoy the simple life on beautiful Orcas Island?
Contact T Williams Realty  – we’ll help you find your way home.

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SEEDS

Posted by Teri 

Third Annual Heritage Seed and Plant Exchange

Feb. 2012 Westsound Seed Exchange. Includes anyone with extra seeds/plants/bulbs/tubers to share; anyone who wants to come and learn about seed saving and wants to acquire seeds and knowledge; anyone with knowledge or interest in seed saving.

Westsound Yacht Club 2012 Seed Exchange

The set-up: the Westsound Yacht Club was filled with tables covered with packets and jars of seeds. There were few rules explained at the beginning of the event. I believe “no elbowing thy neighbor” was one unspoken rule.  Was just thinking I may need to do this due to the way people were hovering over the tables they were going to work over first. It ended up very civilized and all went home with all the seeds they can manage for this season. Two rules: take only the amount of seeds you need for the coming grow season, and bring back seeds to share and exchange next year.

The tables were arranged by ease of growing. Seeds for beginners: radishes, pole beans and kale. Seeds for green thumbs: tomatoes, carrots and corn. I collected from all tables and collected several local seeds- Doe Bay Resort Garden, Bond Brothers Garden, Orcas Parsnips-5thgeneration.

Jars of Local Seeds

This event was sponsored by Baker Creek Heirloom Seed Company, Southern Exposure Seed Exchange and Seed Saver Exchange. Excess seeds are donated to the school’s garden and the food bank.

Another local group supporting “grow your own food” – Food Masters. Contact Lerner Limbach 376-4048 or foodmasters.orcas@gmail.com and find out how to order organic spuds. I just ordered 25 lbs. !!

Your will find me in my garden dreaming and planning this year’s harvest.

Looking to enjoy the simple life on beautiful Orcas Island? Contact T Williams Realty – we’ll help you find your way home.

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Kudos to our Power Company

Posted by Teri

Thank you OPALCO for always being there. Rain, sleet or snow our linemen are out making sure we stay safe, warm and see the light!

Old OPALCO truck door on Orcas Island

Old OPALCO truck door on Orcas Island

Outages here in the islands are not always because we live on an “island” but can be caused by mainland accidents or downed trees in areas that feed the underwater cables that are the power source for the islands.

Snow storms are not common but can also cause an outage. January’s ice and snow storm had the lower mainland in pretty bad shape with 100,000 plus residences facing outages, leaving people stranded in the cold without heat. Orcas saw two power outages that were relatively easy and quick to fix. Our lineman crew is the best, comprised of local boys who have been here most of their lives. They are experienced in being the person sitting in the dark wondering what caused the lights to go out, and asking “should we be cranking up the generator”? And they know most of these community members left in the dark!!  These guys have back up from OPALCO office crew who are working just as hard making sure the crew has hot coffee and food should the weather remain a hazard and it look like it will be an all night date.

Orcas Island Snow Fall 2012

Orcas Island Snow Fall 2012

Personally, I look forward to outages. I get an opportunity to just sit in front of the fire with a good book, put a pot of soup on the wood stove, find the candles and hunker down.   This time, it was the snow that helped put me in the rocking chair instead of a power outage. Islanders are just equipped and look forward to anything Mother Nature throws at us.

Check out OPALCO website http://www.opalco.com   to learn more about our members owned co-op and learn about the many programs that benefit its members.

Looking to enjoy the simple life on beautiful Orcas Island?
Contact T Williams Realty – we’ll help you find your way home.

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