Sunday, 30 June 2013

Mango Season is Fast Approaching

Yes, it is that fateful time of year when we spend hours in the orchards picking mango's and regretting every moving into Casa Chaos. The mango's appear to be growing slower than last year, but they are beginning to fill the trees, which can only mean one thing, Mango season is nearly here.

It is lovely to receive so many messages asking when the mango's are ready, and every time I post a photo of a mango, it sets people into mango frenzy. However, I need to apologise to the woman the other day that received the short and to be honest rude reply about the mango's.

I know you all love the mango's, but honestly I am not hoarding them for myself, as she accused me of doing. If you know me at all, you will know I don't even like mango's. So, when this lady sent me 15 messages in one day about the mangos, asking, questioning and doubting.

I did inform her that I was hoarding them, I didn't want to sell them and I was going to eat them until I was sick! At this point she called me selfish and that was the last correspondence from her thank god. Honestly guys when they are ready you will be able to buy them until every last tree is bare!

Saturday, 29 June 2013

Surprise in the Compost

Unlike other people we have far more in our compost heap than just compost. Recently we had a chicken and some eggs, and before vicious Mama sat on the eggs there were about 15 of them. So I was shocked when the other day my daughter told me that there was only five.

I told her that they must have been buried under the straw, but being the strong willed, stubborn teenager she is, this was ignored. Therefore, the eggs hatched, we had four chicks, and vicious Mama and chicks were placed in the maternity wing.

This is where the problems began, take one hot, steaming compost heap, a calima with temperatures reaching up to 40c and a batch of eggs, and there will be chicks! So, off my daughter went to put the ducks to bed, just as it was getting dark, and an hour later, loads of screaming and a frantic dig in the compost she returned with five more chicks.

It appears that I was right, and that the eggs had been buried in their own personal incubator. So, although vicious Mama was under the impression that she had done her work, in fact the straw had acted as a fantastic birthing place.

My daughter was convinced that she could hear chirping, so spent an hour in the dark, with a torch digging in the heap! I have to give her credit, because I didn't get off the sofa, and had no intention of being out in the dark up to my elbows in compost waste! Dedication or madness hmmmmm that is the question!

Thursday, 27 June 2013

Grab the Safety Gear

That time has arrived, we are not prepared, and I am not going near vicious Mama without full safety gear! Yes, she has begun to hatch her eggs in the compost heap, now why is this an issue I hear you cry. Errrr because she isn't called vicious Mama for nothing.

This chicken is a fantastic mum, she protects her brood with her life, and stays with them at all times. However, this is where the issues come, as I remember the last time she was in the maternity wing, needing a rake to feed everything. Not for any other reason than my own safety.

Now you may think I am being a wimp, and I am not typically afraid of many things ( apart from the dark oh and zombies) but this chicken can leap and karate kick all in one swift motion. There were many times when I left the area as Is aw her approaching.

Therefore, to get her and her chicks off the compost heap I want safety gear, full safety gear, which will ensure that none of her kung foo movements are effective. Or I may just send the children, and remain in the safety of my home, locked in, watching from the window, and sniggering!

Tuesday, 25 June 2013

BBQ Goat

The goats are driving me insane at the moment, as they keep escaping at every opportunity, and the other day we spent the whole day putting them back. Now I have no issues with them escaping and heading up the 25,000 square meters of mountain to eat anything, and everything in their way. However, I do mind that they keep ending up in my drive eating the bushes.

Why can they not just stay where they have been put, or even escape in a subtle way that doesn't irritate me. I realise at this point that I am attempting to find the logic of a goat! On top of the escaping goats, Rico is driving everyone mad, with his constant horny goat noises, and the over affectionate behaviour.

When you go into the goat pen he runs for you, now not in a friendly way, and he is vicious. Jack was always a pain in the arse, however, he was controllable, Rico simply isn't and I think it is time for Rico to go. Before, you all jump on the save Rico bandwagon, I am trying to find him a new home. Although BBQing him seems like a fantastic idea.

Friday, 21 June 2013

Hugging Chickens

I like animals, I would even go as far to say that there are a few that I love, but I draw the line at hugging chickens. There is nothing cute about a chicken, therefore, why the hell would you want to hug one. It amazes me the amount of crazy people on FB, and yes there are people who hug chickens!

I understand hugging a cat, dog, rabbit, and even a goat to a point, but a chicken! Firstly chickens flap, and often they poop, and I would imagine that the whole squeezing motion would in fact make them poop more. So, again, why would you want to hug a chicken?

When I made this point on noseybook AKA Facebook the other day, I received many messages of disgust informing me that I needed to hug more chickens! So, lets just clear up once and for all, I have never, and will never hug a chicken! I wonder if hugging the chickens would increase egg production, hmmmm that could encourage me to hug a few!

Wednesday, 19 June 2013

Alternative to Coffee

I drink a lot of coffee, which I have no issue with, but other people it seems have, as they are always questioning my daily intake, and stating that maybe I should cut back. The thing is why, I like coffee, I drink it all day everyday, and trust me you do not want to encounter me without coffee seeping through my system.

I was emailed a link for alternative coffee recipes, and before hitting the delete button I thought I would take a look. Not because I had any intention of drinking an alternative, but for research purposes. There were some ridiculous recipes, including Dandelion Coffee.

Now to be honest I have never seen a dandelion here, and if I did I would use them to wishes and release fairies, not to drink and pretend it was coffee. How can anyone make a pot of these presumably green sludge and claim that it is an alternative to coffee.

That would be like eating an apple, and claiming it was an alternative to a chocolate eclair! Anyway for anyone that wants to try the "alternative" here is the recipe, enjoy and please let me know what it is like...

Can a Duck Climb up a Tree?

This is a question I found myself asking last week when I discovered Finn up the tree. Now on first glance you think, no don't be silly she flew there, however, this was not the case. Finn had climbed the tree, using her claws, which not resemble something similar to Freddy Kruggar!

Duck care has been lapse recently, and I havnt had chance to clip the ducks wings, or look at their claws. Normal ducks have really short claws, however, Muscovy ducks have long talons to climb, and protect themselves. Hence why Finn, is using hers to explore what she can climb.

I begun to read what to do with the ducks to avoid them climbing up everything, and using their talons to attack. But then I thought why bother, ducks up the trees is no different to chickens up the trees, which I was told didnt happen. Also I think that owning a guard duck is quite cool, and that if I could train them to attack on command this would be fun!

Imagine the call to 911

"Please come quick, I have been attacked"
"By what"
"Its huge, vicious, and has really long talons"
"OMG what is the creature that attacked you, a dog?, bear? savage wolf?"
" errrrr no a duck"

With that thought in mind I have left the ducks as they are, and have begun researching guard ducks, and training capabilities. Hmmm this could be fun!

Sunday, 16 June 2013

Today is a Sad Day :(

There is always so much going on in Casa Chaos, it is sometimes difficult to keep track of the days. However, the 17th June was looming, there was no avoiding it I couldn't sleep through this day and wake up on the other side. There will be very few people that remember, or even care why this day is a sad day for me.

A year ago one of my closest friends died, he was there for me every day, he helped to watch over my children, listened when I had problems, and helped to dry my tears when I cried. Sam was no ordinary dog, he was a huge part of our family.

Sam is buried on Casa Chaos land ssssshhhhh yes we all know this is not allowed, however, who was going to stop me. Burying him here allows me to walk past him every day, stop and talk to him when I am sad, and remember the good times.

The rational side of me knows he was only a dog, OMG how could I say that Sam was one of us! So, today is a sad day as I think about how much we all miss him, but know he is in a place with endless bones where he can run free and never get old <3<3

Friday, 14 June 2013

Caterpillars 1 Farmer 0

Ok, the caterpillars won, they managed to destroy everything, they munched their way through all the lettuces, and the tomatoes. As fast as I was finding them and flinging them to the chickens, they would re appear with more energy, probably from eating all the lettuces.

So, I need a plan B as finding and feeding to chickens was a bit like shutting the stable door after the horse has bolted approach. I need a solution to kill, destroy, remove,deter them before they eat their way through anything else I plant. As I stare into my empty plant pots, where my lettuces once grew.

I am not a happy farmer, but are determined to come out of this triumphantly! and to the woman who told me the other day that killing them was wrong, as they were only doing what god had sent them to do. Im pretty sure that god has far better things to be doing than instructing caterpillars to come and P**s me off!

Wednesday, 12 June 2013

New Arrival

I am sure that all of the animals on the island run and hide when they hear we are searching for new additions for Casa Chaos. However, a lady approached TARA the other day offering two rabbits for rehoming, and of course my attention was drawn to the female of the two.

Since Miss Thunderpussy died, Hoppity has been lonely, and can often be seen laying around, not doing a lot and generally looking unhappy. Therefore, operation find him a girlfriend was always in my mind. Voile, a female bunny came along, and she is now happily hopping around the bunny enclosure.

The bunny is quite cute, and as my daughter was not allowed to name the goats due to crap name choices, I bestowed the honour of naming the rabbit on her. How bad could it be you may ask, well she had five attempts at naming one rabbit and all five were rubbish!

I pity my grandchildren who will end up having the weirdest of names and be teased for generations. Anyway rabbit names are not difficult but as usual the names were stupid. Epic fail on her part, so we named her Rosie which was an original goat name and suits our new arrival perfectly.

Sunday, 9 June 2013

It is All About the Birds and the Frogs

There are Canarian men that are rude, sexist, and arrogant, and others that are lovely. Thankfully I try to only associate with the ones that are lovely, and I met one yesterday. He arrived at my gates like a breath of fresh air, friendly, chatty and full of knowledge.

This guy lived further up the valley, in the wilderness, and came armed with tips and words of wisdom. He was a friend of a friend, and as the conversation progressed the barranco become the talking point. I was asked yet again why I lived behind the barranco, and as I have said many times, "because I don't like visitors"

The jokes begun about when it floods, and how quickly I need to get the car out, the Canarian guy them asked if I knew when the water was coming. Of course I replied, it typically rains a lot, and then a huge rumble and hey presto we have our own private river.

No, no, no he said in a panic like fashion, "it is all about the frogs" "watch the frogs" now up until this point I did think he was normal, however, my opinion begun to rapidly change. He went on to explain that his grandfather, and his before him, had taught the younger generations to watch the frogs. Now I know there is not a lot to do in the mountains, but come on frog watching!

However, it seems that when the water is about to flood the barranco the frogs cross the road to ensure that they are ready. As bizarre as it seems there is some logic to this, and he went on to explain that we all need to use out senses far more, and never rely on the weather people and the news.

Needless to say I had other fantastic weather tips including seabirds and wind, but they are for another blog, as I need to go and watch the frogs!

Saturday, 8 June 2013

I Have Waged War!

As you all know I am not good at growing things, therefore, when I achieve this goal I am delighted. It may only be some tomatoes to everyone else, but to me its the world. Therefore, when anything, or anyone jeopardize these small hint of happiness, I am not happy.

I had been growing different things, including lettuces which were doing really well, and all I could think was "Wow I grew those" sad I know but very true! Therefore, when I went to water them a few days ago and they had been decimated, I was crushed.

What had caused the damage I hear you ask, well for once it wasn't a chicken, duck, goat or even a rabbit. It was an army of small, green, horrible caterpillars and they had just waged war! Quickly I begun picking these horrible little creatures off my lettuces in the vain hope that I could save the pathetic looking leaves.

I begun throwing the caterpillars into the chicken orchard, recycling them for the chickens lunch. This was not met with approval by my daughter, who believes she has already taken the vets oath, mixed in with a bit of Buddhism.

I do not care if she believes that no harm should be done to any living animal, or that I need to show loving kindness to all animals.
I pointed out mid throwing that in fact the caterpillars had broken their own  Buddhist oath and were not showing me equal respect! Therefore, they were becoming lunch, and if you believe in Buddhism, that I do believe is karma!

Wednesday, 5 June 2013

A Use for the Compost

I have found a use for the compost heap, and no it is not what you think. I must admit my vain attempt at composting is not going so well, it has become more like a storage bin for the straw! However, someone has found that it is the ideal place to lay eggs.

Vicious Mama has decided that this is her perfect nesting box and has taken the compost heap as her own private condo. Not only is it warm, comfortable, away from the other chickens, but it is also close to the duck food which she can be seen stealing often.

In her defence we tend not to go near the compost heap that often so the fact that she has been in there unnoticed is our fault. Oh well, I'm glad she has found a use for it, and by the looks of the batch of eggs she has been there a while. Lets see how many chicks she produces this time!

Monday, 3 June 2013

The Great Goat Escape

The goats had been on lock down since Cafe and Leche had arrived, and in all fairness to them they were going stir crazy. Jack had begun to pace the fences, plotting and planning where to escape. Jill is always happy to go along with Jacks plans and Rico, well Rico just does what everyone else is doing.

So, Sunday morning arrived, and I had warned all the animals to behave, not because I was insane, well only slightly, but because we had visitors arriving. I love my blog followers, and there are a few that I personally know and consider to be my friends.

This one lady follows the blog, comments when I am at my low points, and genuinely believes in what I do everyday. She is also the mum of a close friend, so when he asked if she could come and visit the baby goats, I did not hesitate with the answer.

Hence why the goats and everything else was told to behave, but in typical Casa Chaos style this was never going to happen. Just as I begun to think the day would be calm, Jack escaped, closely followed by Rico, Jill, Cafe and Leche. Now this you would think would not be a big deal, however, they went straight up the mountain, and did not stop.

The speed that the babies climbed was incredible, and there was no doubting they are in fact mountain goats. if not bad enough that I had the great goat escape to contend with, but the kittens decided to join them on their mid morning ramble!

Leaving us to watch as five goats, three kittens, and Tazzy decided that mountaineering was a Sunday morning activity. Why can't anything be normal and behave just for once!

Saturday, 1 June 2013

Never Name Food!

When I announced yesterday that we had named the goats, a friend couldn't believe it and he said "Never name food" this made me laugh, as the same thing was said about Peppa. We were told all the way along that if we named her, we would never eat her, hmmm look how that turned out.

The debate still continues, whether we will keep the goats or Cafe and Leche as they are called. Will I personally eat them, no, but I think the sensible plan has to be to sell them. So, why name them, this is actually to make things easier for everyone here.

When you have more than one animal that is the same having a conversation about them can be difficult. If I need something done it is far easier to refer to the animal by name, rather than in the collective term. Besides everything has a name, even some of the demented chickens have names.

So, yes I named food, but hey why not, ,we are crazy after all, and BBQ goat is nice. So for the moment Cafe and Leche are enjoying their time being out with Jack, Jill and Rico. Doing what goats do, eat, poop,sleep, eat, poop , sleep.