Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Harvest time, preschool and more baby chicks...Fall's coming

Today we harvested a few cabbages, some green beans which were volunteers in the potato patch (and a good thing too...the bunnies have eaten all the others), some fingerling potatoes, and some lovely dill. 

The dill is amazingly pretty...explosive blooms...makes me want to paint it. 

 And, we've been harvesting tomatoes and broccoli all week. The cucumbers are a failure. Apparently the seeds we saved last year were not viable, at least they have not produced any fruit--plenty of flowers, but not a cucumber on any plant. Too bad. I love my summer cucumbers. 

Today we picked up a few more (six) little two week old chicks. Two Aracauna (Easter egg layers) and four Cuckoo Marans (chocolate egg layers). Everyone we sell eggs to insists our organic, free range eggs are the best in town (it's the love, man), and we can hardly keep up with the demand. Now that Richard is doing better, I figured a few more chickens wouldn't hurt.

new chicks

my hatched chicks
Baby chicks are so cute. We sprayed them all with a natural lice remover when we got home... I saw some of the ugly little critters crawling on the new chicks in the transport box. We had quite a lice infestation on our two hatched chicks that we had to deal with last week. They seem better now, and at six weeks are getting bigger and will have to move out to one of the barns, I think. I wonder if I can combine all the little ones? It's almost time to clean out and sanitize all of the chicken coops and the barn up the hill. Even though the weather is still incredibly hot, I can feel Fall coming along, and with it all of the chores to prepare for the winter.

We are also trying to decide if we should put our little kids into preschool. We got the results back on some of the tests, at least locally and both kids qualify for special education preschool, which will be paid for by the nonprofit who did the developmental screenings on them. We also got in to the Biomedical doctor who suggested several new supplements, and taking soy out of their diets. We are having a hard time trying to get them to take the new vitamins. Cod Liver Oil...forget it. They gag, they wretch, they spit it at my feet. Nice. And the blood work and urine tests they need to determine if they have any allergies are just too expensive right now, so we just keep on experimenting with the diet. 

I'm a little afraid of the preschool scenario with their special needs, but everyone we have interviewed (about five so far) have been pretty willing to adapt and try to make it work. the kids are both so excited about the idea of going to school, and even though we decided to home school them, perhaps one year in preschool won't hurt. Or maybe it will. I'm still going back and forth on this. There's the extra help...speech therapy for my daughter, and a counselor for both of them to work on their sensory issues and my sons fine motor skills. Everything I've read seems to suggest that the earlier we can get them help, the better chances they have to progress out of these behaviors that are holding them back.

Plus, I have to admit, the thought of three hours three days a week all to myself is so very tempting. Think of what I could do with that time! But, I worry about the kids being indoctrinated into the materialistic, capitalistic culture that is mainstream America...something we do not agree with. I also worry about their exposure to different belief systems, like Christianity and hunting and guns. 

I guess we can give it a try for a couple of months and see what happens, and if it feels so wrong, we can pull them out and go back to the home school plan. I've been looking into story times at the library to socialize my kids, and thinking about teaching an art class for home school kids in the area. Heck, I've been thinking of going to school in Pueblo to get my Masters in Education...if I could, and becoming a legitimate art teacher. Wouldn't that be fun? But, that may be too complicated...we'll see.

For now, I guess we'll take it one day at a time and see if the preschool can handle my daughter on the days she insists she's a dog and crawls everywhere, refuses to speak or eat with utensils? And, if we're lucky, they might be able to convince her she's a little girl--we're certainly having a hard time with that.