Sunday, August 16, 2009

Sunday Still Life...

I spent a good part of the day trying to reclaim part of my house! It has been thoroughly trashed by the construction process -- everything both upstairs and down has been coated with several kinds of dust. I vacuumed all the floors and wiped down the furniture I could reach (there's still a lot of stuff from the basement in piles upstairs, so I can't get to a lot of it). The dining room area windows were done, so that corner could be set up for use again. What a relief!

When I got it finished, I took a break to practice fiddle for the first time in a long time and while I was playing, a nice woman from church drove up with a beautiful bouquet. She told me that, since I had a birthday this past week, I was chosen to receive some of the altar flowers! What a nice treat! When I put the fiddle down and placed the flowers on the table, it looked so much like a perfect still life that I thought I should take a picture and share it!!

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Turning over rocks....

While I'm turning over rocks to try and find a solution for the PZ Kut production problem, I thought I would entertain you about some other rolling stones... The chicken loves it when someone turns over a rock for her so that she can look for tasty morsels that might be hidden underneath. She makes the funniest happy little chirping noises while waiting for rocks to be moved.

Once the rock has been lifted, she gets right in there and looks for bugs and worms to eat, moving really fast so they don't get away. She doesn't miss much!

When she's found everything tasty there is to find (she doesn't like ants), she waits for the process to be repeated, chirruping and talking the whole time.

Friday, August 7, 2009

By Popular Request...

I bring you part one of the long awaited Chicken Update!

First, anyone who has ordered from me this month will recognize this face from the invoice stamp I'm currently using. I was really pleased with how the carving of this portrait came out. As you can tell from the chair rail in the background, she was being a very contented lap chicken -- she really loves to roost in a friendly lap.

Of course, she also tries to do her part in contributing her bit to the household. Here she is hard at work:

Cheeken has a lovely little roost out in a big outdoor cage, but she won't lay eggs out there. She prefers hiding in the dark under the desk in the dining room. I think she also likes to hear people milling around in the building, even though she likes her privacy curtain. She makes some pretty strange noises when she's trying to lay an egg. I wonder if it is uncomfortable, or if she's just giving herself a pep talk!

And isn't that something to be proud of? Don't you think she earned her tomatoes and pears (both particular favorites with her)?

I understand that she's slowing down on the eggs as she gets ready to molt again. Poor, scruffy chicken....

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Houston, we have a problem...

There's currently a manufacturing problem at the PZ Kut works. I don't know when it will be resolved. What this means is that there will be no White PZ Kut until the difficulty is fixed. I'm trying not to panic, but my deep breathing looks a little like hyperventilation from time to time. This isn't aided by the fact that the basement area where Stampeaz lives is currently without walls, ceiling or lights -- timing is everything, right? (insert rueful chuckle)

I suppose that the good news is that since I don't have any PZ Kut to prepare, I can use that time to get my inventory fixed and write a chicken update. I think I'd rather have White PZ Kut than a silver lining right now, though.... (sigh)

Sunday, May 3, 2009

It's That Time of Year Again!

I am about to head out on another grand mushroom hunting adventure with my family, as I do every year around this time (the first reports of mushrooms in our hunting grounds are starting to come in). This means that I will be closing for a couple weeks while I am gone. Orders received after 7:00pm Friday May 8th will not be processed until I return from vacation, which will be sometime the week of May 18th. I know it's inconvenient and I apologize in advance for that, but since Stampeaz is a small, one person operation, it's the only way I get to take a break from the daily routine. I will get orders out the door just as fast as I can, once I return.

I've also gotten my stash of clues ready, so I hope to do a little box hunting while I'm away, too. There are a couple pretty close to the cabins, so I should be able to take a side trip or two.

And, of course, I'll be seeing quite a bit of the chicken, so expect a good update when I get caught up with everything!! In the meantime, I will say that I have heard a good story to tide us all over. Recently, while she was out scratching around in the yard looking for tasty bugs and seeds and things, she fluffed up her feathers and chased a pair of wild turkey hens out of her territory. That's one feisty little chicken -- she must have been quite a sight!!

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Visits and Gifts...

I'm so excited!! My sister is visiting (also helping me get more organized and catch up at! We took inventory today and the numbers in the online store now actually match what I have in stock. Inventory is much easier to take with two people than it is to do alone, so I really appreciated the help!

On the way south, she and her husband stopped by to visit my brother and sister-in-law (and Cheeken and Kizzie) and they were given a gift from Cheeken to bring along with them!! Cheeken has been laying an egg nearly every single day and they are very cute -- little, brown eggs with dark brown freckles on them!! There were a couple new daffodil blooms in the front yard, so I put the eggs into a basket and took a picture with them -- it seemed a fitting image for the changing seasons.

I got a note from my sister-in-law the other day -- Cheeken took her first bath since the warmer weather began to arrive. She likes dust baths, as you might remember from last May. Well, there isn't a lot of dust at this time of year, so she ended up taking a mud bath, instead. I'm given to understand that the feathers caked with heavy, black mud did not do positive things for the freshly cleaned house (nor did they do much for her freshly cleaned and newly bedded cage). Good thing she's such a charming chicken, huh?? Also, her new favorite food is canned pears - she seems to get intense cravings for specific foods when she's in egg production mode! One day she demands tomatoes and the next it's canned pears.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

An Overdue Chicken Update...

This is one very lucky chicken! She's had a full year of living the high life down on the river, contributing the occasional egg, keeping everyone company, and providing some laughter along the way.

The chicken's usual domain is the downstairs area -- kitchen and dining areas (very washable carpet and wood floors that are easy to clean when necessary...). She had never tried to navigate the stairs to the bedrooms and living room, but she had once found her way to the laundry room and pantry area behind the kitchen at the bottom of the stairs.

Well, recently she had a bit of a scare. The people of the flock were upstairs when a shadow fell across the windows of her little safe haven and she got frightened enough (probably thinking the shadow portended death from above), to decide she wanted to be with the rest of her flock in the worst possible way!

Wait -- I have to pause in the story... Don't you just love the side-by-side anticipation in that picture?

I have to say I think the little spaniel is better at sharing than the chicken, but they have worked out a pecking order of sorts (the chicken pecks the dog, if she wants the pup out of the way).

Anyway, on with the story... The chicken actually flew up the stairs and into the living room, squawking and carrying on the whole way. When she got there, she dove behind the furniture and refused to come out! After quite a few attempts, my brother finally coaxed her out of hiding and carried her back downstairs, soothing her the whole way as she continued to make noises of distress.

She's not really in jail after her escapades -- it's just her little coop for the night. The dog probably appreciates the break and ability to have the snacks all to herself, though!!

Thanks to Graytreefrog for the recent photos to post with the story. :)

Sunday, February 8, 2009


It's boggling my mind! reopened its doors three years ago today. What a wonderful journey it has been. Thank you all for making it so much fun for me -- I have had the opportunity to meet some of the nicest people on the planet, both online and in person. What could be better??

Of course, I am celebrating today -- if you need to order anything, it might be a good day to do it.... The usually random Stampeaz Surprize will be on all of today's invoices. :)

Happy anniversary to all of us!! I think I need to break out the hot cocoa!