After the girls were home, I went down to do brooder chores. I refilled the water bin on the duck side, #3 refilled the feed bins, I put some feed into a bucket, added water and apple cider vinegar, and set it aside to ferment. I've got to try something to decrease the rate we're charging through bags of chick feed! From what I have researched, fermenting feed is a good option, healthy, and as long as the feed remains below the water line, you shouldn't have to worry about rot or mold. Let's give it a shot. What's to lose but a few cups of feed and a splash of apple cider vinegar?
At last, I grabbed the big water bin from the gosling and chick side, cleaned it out, refilled it... and when I lifted it up over the side of the brooder to put it back in, my back twinged. There was a moment where I was just stuck there, slightly hunched over, heavy bin full of 8 gallons of water dangling precariously over the birds... And I thought - I can drop it, and cry... and have an even bigger mess to clean up... Or I can move forward enough to set this down, and possibly do more damage. I successfully set the water bin safely on the stone pedestal in the brooder and then managed to hobble up the stairs huffing and gasping, hunched over and near tears. As I came in the kitchen #1 saw me and asked what was wrong. By then it hurt to move, every breath was painful. I couldn't straighten or arch my back. I grabbed some ibuprofen before asking #3 to grab an ice pack and meet me at the couch. Finding the couch cluttered with a backpack, a blanket, a laundry basket, and a bag of candy (hey, what happened to no food in the living room?), I said I couldn't wait and headed up the stairs. Oh boy! It was a struggle to get to the top, but I kept the momentum going all the way to the bedroom. With some help from #3 I got laid down with the ice in the right spot, and hoped I could mend. I asked #3 to water the rabbits. I knew there'd be no way I could carry the water bucket to the barn. She said she would and went off.
After an hour and a half, my mom texted. Remember when she put in a deck last year? There was a spot where the old sidewalk had been that had been torn out, but it stuck out further than the deck, leaving an ugly dirt gap where the cement had been removed. We had mentioned putting in a fairy garden. Well, she is hosting a gathering next month and wanted to know if we could get that set up. Sure. Why put it off? Let's do this!
The ice did it's job, and combined with the ibuprofen I was feeling a little better. At least I could breathe, though movement was still hot or miss. I took more ibuprofen and my mom swung by to pick up #1, #5 and I to go do our fairy garden shopping.
First the greenhouse. I have to say, I love this greenhouse - Erickson's Greenhouse in Brainerd is fantastic. Always friendly, knowledgeable, and there's always something there to grab your interest. We picked up the bulk of our fairy garden supplies here. Two fairies, a table and four chairs, a rocking chair, solar lights on shepherd hooks, a mailbox, a garden trellis, a birdbath, a rope ladder, a bridge, and a stone arch. We wanted to add in the duck pond and the stone wall with the cave, but we were on a budget.
Next stop, the dollar store. We bought several little bags of "sky blue" glass pieces (look like flat marbles), and one bag of bigger green glass pieces (same, melted marble look).
Next we ran to the feed store because I knew they had fairy houses. Well, they HAD fairie houses last time I'd been looking for them... the selection was awful. There were only two. One was pink... so we went for the yellow one. And they weren't on sale this time either... but it's solar and it will look good.
Last stop? Tony's work to pick up some pea gravel and to say hi. He's working a 14 hour day today to make up for taking yesterday off so he won't lose his bonus.
Back at my parents' house, I had #1 and #2 help haul the pea gravel over and pour it into the odd-shaped divot. I evened it out with a garden trowel. I used the end of the trowel to create the line for the little creek. I added the blue glass pebbles to give it a water appearance. The house was set as a centerpiece, with a bridge over the blue creek. The mailbox was set off to the edge of the gravel, the table and rocking chair were set near to the house. The trellis and birdbath were set a little further back, with the stone arch near the back corner. The rope latter was attached to the trellis under the deck to make it look like the fairies could climb right up to the deck. Once everything else was set up, I put the fairies in and then added the green glass pieces as a walking path - from the house to the bridge, to the mail box, to the garden spaces, and across to the yard. I still want to add the buck pond (I even left a kink in the creek where the pond piece will fit), and we may add a bench and maybe even that cave in the wall that #1 liked so much - but later. We barely stayed within budget for this project. It turned out pretty nice though.
My only thing I'd change - I think I'd try to find green gravel instead of the pea gravel. Maybe even like the green fish tank gravel, so it looked more like grass, and made the wooden-looking accessories "pop" a little better. My favorite part? I put the pea gravel within the edges of the gaps from the cement removed. This means it isn't in a straight line, it doesn't line up with the other edges, it's a little random - and it leads to a more natural look. I love it.
We have Jarrahdale pumpkins coming up! I planted nine seeds in this jug, but WOW! These seedlings are massive! There's no way nine could fit comfortably! There are only three up so far and they're already crowding one another!
Today she was tearing through the room chasing and pouncing on the other kitties. She's definitely feeling better, but she's also still rattling when she breathes. She still has a ways to go, but the vet assures me this is common with weaning kittens as they lose the immunity from nursing, and that Sage will eventually kick her immune system into working order.