In our Love Crucified Community, Jesus tells us, “Suffer all with Me, no longer two, but one, in My sacrifice of Love.” In an earlier post, “The Kiss of Jesus,” I commented, “The Cross is the bridal chamber where union takes place in the intimacy of suffering.” I continue to come back to that […]
via The Intimacy of SUFFERING WITH — SOUL FOOD MINISTRIES
Building and working on the farm is rewarding in a reflective and appreciative way of God’s Presence in the natural world of His Creation. The satisfaction of building, the passing of the day’s light, from orange orb to orange orb, stars and and moonlight, and God in all of it remaining lovingly present but seemingly silent.
Now that the first step of the house is done, designs are being made for the walls and roof.
Weld of the stays and a hole for the chain.
Floor joyces screwed together with chain for swivel.
Side view of rolling gear with 6 foot extention pipe in middle.
Framed 2×4’s on top of floor joyces.
Perspective of the under carriage of the 8×10 joyces
Started in the middle with a run of white oak rough cut boards.
A row of connectors
Level showing it is right.
Had to use my car jack to get it level.
Close up of right angle screw connector
Corner view of frame on joyces.
Side view of frame on joyce and rolling gear
Adding second row of boards from the center.
Progress on floor boards.
4 rows of floor boards with the quarter inche spacer.
After an all night downpour started back on the floor boards.
Chains on each of the outside joyces allowed for swivel in uneven terrain.
The above untreated boards are going to be sealed with dad’s saturating primer for all weather protection.
The whole reason a rolling house is being built compared to a permanent house is because of 2 important reasons for our egg farm: 1. Access to fresh foraging nutrition. 2. Keeping chickens on fresh grass reduces disease.
Many people talk about the permanent chicken barn. We will have a barn for equipment, supplies, food, brooding and breeding, but once pullets are feathered out they go into a rolling house.
As you’d expect, an egg laying chicken farm prizes the egg! Every egg is more than simply the 33 pennies we receive in the carton, we’ve put months of nurturing and maintaining a chicken laying eggs. Summer or winter the chicken needs to be given attention and care. The ideal plan is to have a house where there is clean, colorful, perfectly shaped eggs awaiting a happy farmer when he opens the hatch to the nest box. The reality is a daily hunt for eggs, knowing these beauties are gold! No eggs, no income! The history of hunting for eggs is an adventure! Let’s start with the first moving of the hen house. The day after that our hens were laying eggs in the gravel where the house was at. I think that was the first rogue lay. Now that the Ameracaunas are at the adult laying age, it is an all-out chase down trying to find these eggs! Found eggs under the pine tree, in spooled hoses, deep in the front yard’s tall 8 foot African grass, in my toolbox, in the chicken hospital, in the hay bales, deep under the hen house and the pullet house, behind and in front of the barn door, in the flower pot, in the corner of the house, and in the pullet feeder. Hard to know where you’ll find eggs. In the cold weather you have to find them before they freeze and crack, which means a throw-away. If the shells get dirty and they get filthy…you have to get them cleaned quick because the shells absorb colors making stain marks on the shells. I’ve tried cleansing solutions and they don’t work, at least if you follow the directions. Some shell colors come off easier than others, like dark eggs, which receives their coloring right before the hen lays. Dad and I eat the eggs that don’t clean sufficient enough to sell. We have a place in the fridge for “dirty eggs” to eat.
The pullets have their own house outside which is an 8ft x 12 ft barn style wood house, basically an old tool shed donated by Marth and Carl. We are having several deaths and I’ve trying to improving their environment hoping that will stop the mortality rate. 2 weeks ago I put in two 5 foot long feeders. For awhile that seemed to stop the deaths, then about a week ago the deaths started again so I thought perhaps the ammonia from the manure was the reason, being that it seemed to be strong at the back of the house. I cut a 2ft x 2ft square floor level window (wired opening) giving them ventilation. That seemed to stop deaths for a few days, then more deaths. I thought it might be the cold temperature, but I was told by a chicken expert that chickens with feathers are well suited to cold weather. My current thinking is that it is due to coccidiosis disease common in chickens. It is passed by eating their manure. I cleaned out the coop 2 weeks ago, but when I tried to clean out the coop a couple days ago the manure was frozen to the plywood floor. Even trying to chip it out with a maddox was unsuccessful. I tossed out the lose soiled bedding, but had to leave the rest. Since letting the pullets out in a fenced chicken run they don’t drop nearly as much manure in the house, but still has some. One possible solution is to buy medicated feed. It costs $5 more per 50lb bag for medicated feed, which is a significant budget hit. Only one hatchery offers a coccidiosis vaccination for chicks ($1 per chick) and they don’t carry all the breeds I need for egg color. I started out with 150 chicks and now we are down to 90. Quite a learning curve!
These birds lay eggs around the 5 month mark compared to the Ameracaunas that start around 8 months. Since most of this batch of chicks (now pullets) were purchased in October, they will start laying around March. They are eating 25 pounds of feed every 2 days. Unlike the foraging hens, these pullets rely entirely on grain.
My next solution for the pullets is to put remove the feeders and reengineer them so the pullets cannot get inside it and deficate, resulting in passing of disease.
The above are side views of the 3 generations of feeders. The first one had a large volume, but pullets could deficate easily in it. The second version was designed with a top, but was also a place to perch, so the third generation had an angled lid. Hoping this prevents disease spreading. If deaths continue, I might have to resort to putting the pullets on a wire floor, which is not recommended because of predators. I’ll have to reinforce the under area of the coop to keep it protected from predators, if it comes to that.
The feeder was completed for the most part. I’m waiting for some testing of the gravity feeding to add a board that holds back the feed amount.
We are in need of 3 automatic doors, which run $200 each.
500 Egg carton labels with our farm design and federal and state requirements at $246
2 wheels and tires for hay wagon frame (rolling gear) around $181 each.
15 pounds of wood screws at $3.85 a pound.
Any help with these would be greatly appreciated! All donations receive tax deductible receipt at the first of the year.
In an effort to save time and improve our chicken feeders, I’ve started construction on a larger gravity fed feeder for the laying hens.
Friend from my past volunteered 5 hours of work toward this, and after several days of rain am now getting back to it.
This will get us a step closer to feeding the chickens less often, freeing up time for other projects.
The tragic tale of humanity is hearing the gospel, the truly Good News of our salvation, and not living it! There are people who have not heard the gospel. There are people who have, and as the seeds of the parable hit on rocky soil, do not grow roots. And then there are many other circumstances, one of which is that the gospel message is grouped among weeds and is choked out. It is becoming increasingly dangerous to live in this world of paganism because it is threatening our Christian and Catholic values. We must take action to simplify our lives, make and move to sanctuaries where we can grow strong, be restored, and grow strong in faith!
It is tragic when we are not clearly living a life in holy response to the gospel. Remember, the summary of the gospel is to love God above all else and neighbor as self. The foundation of society is shaken and we are on the defense of our faith, so now is the time to stabilize our lives by building sanctuaries that are kept pure, protected, and filled with the life of God’s Heart, the Eucharist.
The lack of true and zealous response to the gospel is what becomes tragic. We must work toward the preservation of the Catholic Faith we have, or, by dilution of a worldly life, we will lose it. We must be ever-vigilant in keeping our Catholic Faith uncompromised and keep our lives simple to living evident lives of trust in God. We must band together, make a community of the Body of Christ, and build each other up in faith, hope, and charity! Let us not make the mistake of getting so engrossed in the world that we demean our faith by a worldly lifestyle.
We desire to not be tragic, but to be heroic builders and nurturers of the Body of Jesus Christ! We can do it with the United Hearts of Jesus and Mary in the Father’s Heart!
It can be a struggle for Catholics to live their faith nowadays. This morning before Mass, I was happy to see more than seven men behind me in the confession line. This stirs a Catholic man’s heart with appreciation for God’s work. It is vital to live a sacramental life!
In our present age, and truly it is always so, we are called to live the fullness of the dignity of our Catholic Faith. Regular confession and communion is health to our souls, and yet there is more to do. We have to live heroically, doing for others what they cannot do for themselves. If we simply do what is required for our souls, this too can become a selfishness. We must rise to service of others!
One reason God has prompted our Society prayers for the whole world is to teach us heroic generosity. Please don’t squander moments of prayer upon only your issues or crisis, but train your hearts and minds to think heroically generously of all people. Place this on the end of all your prayers, “…and for all others who need this prayer.” This will train you to open your heart and focus outside yourself and your problems.
When you are preparing for confession and asking for an illumination of conscience, knowledge of your sins, etc., ask the same for all others who need it. And when you finish your confession and do your penance, double it and offer it for others who need it. Think creatively how you can do more as an intercessor.
Catholicism is in need of great growth and this isn’t going to happen if we only do the necessary amount to save our souls. Our Society endorses creativity in prayer because it comes from the true love of God and neighbor which by it’s nature multiplies and magnifies. Share the wealth of your heart and do more!