Egg Avocado Toast with Fresh Herbs

August 7, 2018

Let me just preface this by saying I know I'm really late to the avocado toast game. Like really really late. I get that. Like my 70ish year old Mom eats avocado toast. And she's not even on Pinterest. So I apologize for not being more on trend here, but I just had to share! And since I'm going to be in LA new week which is like the epicenter of all things avocado, I thought sharing this recipe today was apropos!

Take a Peek at Our Week - July 29 to Aug 4

August 4, 2018

This week the heat and humidity continued (hello August!), so it was watermelon for everyone! Our berry bushes are still producing, so we've been picking and freezing as many berries as we can, egg production is still good, and the Littles are growing up (waaayyyy too fast!). 

I spent some time trying to reclaim the vegetable garden this week (as the condition of my fingernails will attest to!) and got a good portion weeded. There's still a lot of work to do, but at least you can see our tomato plants, pumpkin and sweet potato vines and corn now! And boy, did I feel "farmer-ish" this week! Welcome to summer in Maine! Enjoy this peek at our week.

DIY Chicken Coop Gel Hand Sanitizer Dispenser

July 31, 2018

While we may not want to believe it of our adorable fluffy butts in the backyard, salmonella can be transmitted from your backyard chickens to you and your family if proper precautions aren't taken.

Good practice is to assume that all chickens carry the salmonella bacteria. It actually is pretty common even in backyard chickens.  Healthy chickens can carry the bacteria in their intestines and not show symptoms, and even healthy humans can come in contact with salmonella and not become sickened.

Take a Peek at my Week - July 22 to 28

July 28, 2018

This was a glorious week here in Maine. Summer is in full swing. We have berries both wild and cultivated to pick, garlic to harvest, peas and other garden veggies coming up and of course lots of Littles growing up healthy and happy! I visited a local lavender farm with a friend this week and was excited to welcome News Center Maine to our farm to do a live segment one morning, but other than that, it was just a relaxing week at home. There was also a lot of plaid and gingham involved this week. Enjoy this peek at our week!

How to Plant a Strawberry Rhubarb Garden

July 24, 2018

I have always wanted a strawberry patch of my very own! So finally, after living here in Maine for almost three years, I decided it was time to plant strawberries. I knew I wanted it to be a raised bed to keep the strawberries elevated a bit to deter the snowshoe rabbits, toads, snakes and of course the chickens who all love to nibble on the sweet ripe fruit. 

Take a Peek at our Week - July 15 to 21

July 21, 2018

Ooops, I did it again! Since we had such a dismal hatch a week or so ago during the sudden heatwave, I just might have gotten some more chicks! I mean what was I to do?  I still had two broodies and really, really wanted some of the Ice Cream Bars (half Cream Legbar and half Isbar) from My Pet Chicken...

So yesterday morning, a peeping box arrived for me at the post office. Six active, healthy Littles. So that brings us up to a total of eight laying hens, one rooster, seven 7-week olds, one 2-week old, six day old chicks, plus eight ducks, four 7-week old ducklings, two dogs, a cat and a partridge in a pear tree.  

Just kidding about the partridge, although I did see a bunch of baby partridge in the driveway this morning on my way to Gray, Maine! They were cute. That's the first time I've seen partridge chicks.  After that chance encounter, I drive almost 2 hours south to spend a wonderful day at the Gray Public Library today participating in their Summer Author Series. 

I donated a copy of each of my books to the library director and was asked to sign a quilt square for a raffle they're having to raise money for the library. Other square have been signed by Tabitha and Stephen King, Tess Gerritsen, and other Maine authors, so that's pretty exciting! 

In other news this week, we started harvesting rhubarb, peas, wild blueberries and raspberries, and garlic as well. Despite having seriously neglected our garden, it's actually doing pretty well!  Enjoy this peek at our week.

The Rise of Natural Chicken Keeping

July 19, 2018

When we first started raising chickens back in 2009, I knew that I wanted to raise them naturally. That meant without using any chemicals or commercials medications - after all, we would be eating their eggs.

The whole point of starting a backyard flock (besides the fact that chickens make AWESOME pets and are super fun to watch and they love to sit on your lap!), was to know where our food was coming from and to know that it was as healthy as possible.

Why Do Chickens Bob Their Heads When They Walk?

July 17, 2018

Chickens, as well as pigeons, doves, cranes, magpie and quail among other birds, appear to bob their heads when they walk.

Some theories as to why they do this are to keep their balance or to provide depth perception, but most scientists agree that the real reason for why chickens bob their head when they walk is to maintain an acute sense of their surroundings.

Take a Peek at my Week - July 8 to 14

July 14, 2018

This week brought relief from the oppressive heat and humidity and Maine is back to being a great place to live! The days have been in the high 70s to low 80s and and the nights have been perfect for sleeping, in the 50s.

Herbs for Hens: When, Where & Why

July 10, 2018

Almost since the beginning of my chicken keeping journey, I've been incorporating herbs into my routine. I've read countless articles and scientific journals on the subject and spent even more hours just watching my chickens. 

Watching what they eat, what they don't, where they choose to take their dust baths. And I quickly became convinced that making a wide variety of herbs available to my chickens is what keeps them so healthy. 

Take a Peek at My Week - July 1 to 7

July 8, 2018

Sorry for the late post this week, but we had friends come stay with us and were busy doing the "tourist thing" with them this week. The early part of the week, as we welcomed July, we battled a crazy heat wave like the rest of the country and saw unheard of heat indices near 100 degrees. That meant ice water and cooling treats for all the animals, and lots of lazing around just trying to stay cool (without central air conditioning!). 

DIY Electrolyte Ice Cubes for your Chickens

July 3, 2018

Electrolytes in their water can really help backyard chickens immensely in the summer. Once the temperature rises much above 80 degrees Fahrenheit, they start to feel the effects. While chickens don't sweat like humans, they do lose fluids and electrolytes through panting, labored breathing, defecation and even egg laying!

You can just give them some plain Pedialyte, but I prefer to make my own electrolytes. You can stir the electrolyte powder into their water, or even better make some DIY Electrolyte Ice Cubes for them! 

How Do Chickens Stay Cool in the Summer?

July 2, 2018

Chickens don't have sweat glands like humans and so they can't sweat to stay cool. They can't just jump in a pond to cool off like ducks. Chickens can have a hard time when the heat of summer arrives. But once the temperatures start to rise, they do have some tricks in their arsenal to help them stay cool.

Take a Peek at our Week - June 24-30

June 30, 2018

This week I managed to tear myself away from the Littles (they'll be four weeks old this Sunday!) and - finally - get the top of our run done. As in, done right. We just had plastic poultry netting over the top, which has been great to keep out the hawks, but I've been worried that something like a weasel or fisher cat would climb up and over and tear right through it, so this week was the week to get that done. As you might already know if you follow on Facebook or Instagram, my husband and I did great at teamwork and got the whole project done with no yelling or crying (win for us!!!)

7 Methods for Controlling Flies Naturally around your Chicken Coop and Run

June 26, 2018

Flies are a nuisance in the summer and they can also transmit disease and the dreaded flystrike to your chicken flock.  Attracted to both feed (especially wet feed) and manure, their numbers quickly multiple if left unchecked.

Of course spraying chemicals around your coop and run is out of the question, and sadly chickens don't eat flies, so what's the best way to control flies naturally around the area?

Take a Peek at our Week - June 17 to 23

June 24, 2018

We heralded in the first days of summer here in Maine with bright sunshine and flowers everywhere! We have ten healthy babies - chicks and ducklings - who celebrate their three-week birthday this weekend.

5 Easy Ways to Summerize your Chicken Run

June 19, 2018

Summer can be tough on backyard chickens. If left to free range, they'll naturally seek out the coolest spot they can - under bush, likely, where there's a nice cool breeze blowing - so it makes sense that in order to "summerize" your chicken run, you'll want to mimic the conditions they would be able to find roaming your yard.

Take a Peek at our Week - June 10-16

June 16, 2018

Wow! This week just flew by. I mean, where did it go? I got literally nothing on my to-do list done.  Not on thing. How does that even happen? Oh, wait...that's right, we have baby chicks and ducklings..... Enjoy this peek at our week!

My Top Twelve Plants to Grow for Chickens

June 12, 2018

This year when you're planning your garden, why not plant some extras for your chickens? Planting from seed is extremely economical and a great way to reduce both your family's and your chickens' feed bill a bit.

Shirred Eggs with Fresh Herbs and Cheese

June 10, 2018

Shirred eggs, or "oeufs en cocotte", is the traditional French way of baking eggs in individual dishes or “cocottes”, also known as ramekins.

Take a Peek at our Week June 3rd to 9th

June 9, 2018

This week has been full of baby chicks and ducklings from My Pet Chicken! Also, pretty flowers and lots of rain. Welcome to spring in Maine - finally. I missed last week's post because I was in New York City at Book Expo which was so much fun (and hopefully I'll share some photos of that next week), so this week I might have gone a bit overboard with the photos!  But then again, you can NEVER have too many cute baby photos!

In between enjoying our new babies, we somehow did manage to get some pretty annuals planted in the front gardens and earlier in the week, I headed to Portland to film a commercial with First Saturday Lime which we managed to get done despite the rain!  Enjoy this peek at our week!

20 Ways to Support your Favorite Author | Blogger | Facebook Page without Spending a Dime

May 29, 2018

This week I'll be in New York City at Book Expo, the largest book "trade show" of the year. It's the place to be - to see and be seen! Authors, publishers, librarians, retailers and others in the book industry gather to network, learn and celebrate the world of books. 

Take a Peek at Our Week - May 20 to 26

May 26, 2018

Heading into the Memorial Day weekend, I finally felt confident enough in the weather to start planting, so the later part of this week was all about getting seeds into the ground. I've wanted a strawberry bed for awhile now, so we tackled that as well.  

Prevent Flystrike in Your Chickens and Keep Those Butts Fluffy

May 24, 2018

We all love Fluffy Butt Friday - and with good reason. There's nothing more beautiful than a gloriously full, fluffy chicken butt! But there can be danger lurking beneath all that fluff, so use Fluffy Butt Friday as a weekly reminder to check over your chickens for a potentially deadly affliction called "flystrike".

Sea Kelp as the New Antibiotic for Chickens?

May 22, 2018

Seaweed, algae, kelp...whatever you call it, it's that green slimy stuff floating in the ocean that washes up on the beach, dries out and smells. But recent studies point to it possibly working as a natural antibiotic for livestock and poultry.

Take a Peek at our Week May 13-19

May 19, 2018

So this week was a bit bittersweet. We started off by burying Charlotte, our flock matriarch that we lost back in February and who was in the deep freezer in the barn until the ground defrosted. She was such a good chicken and I still think the other girls miss her. I know I do. I thought it was very fitting to bury her on Mother's Day since she was such a good 'mother hen' to so many chicks over the years. 

Avocado Sage Deviled Duck Eggs

May 17, 2018

When eggs are plentiful and we have a barbeque or other social event to go to, I love to bring a tray of deviled eggs. For Memorial Day this year, I decided to share with you my deviled duck egg recipe using fresh sage from the garden.

Handling a Bully in your Chicken Flock

May 15, 2018

Chickens are the original Mean Girls.  You can't raise them for too long before you realize that. Hard as it may be to believe (almost as hard as believing that your sweet family pet dog is a chicken killer!), chickens can be downright nasty. Sure, they can also be sweet and cuddly and adorable, but in the blink of an eye, they will turn on a flock member.

Take a Peek at my Week May 6-12

May 12, 2018

Although it's still a tad bit early to think about planting seeds outside here in Maine (we usually wait until Memorial Day), the trees are bursting with buds and our tulips are in full bloom. The grass is green and my perennial herbs like mint, thyme, lavender, thyme and cat mint are coming back to life. It was so nice to be at home all week and just be able to relax, whip up some pancakes for breakfast using some of our fresh eggs and continue to dream about spring even as the temperatures dipped down to freezing again last night!

Ducks Need Niacin (aka Ducks Love Peas!)

May 8, 2018

Anyone who has ever raised ducks can attest to the fact that ducks LOVE peas! Don't believe me? Just toss some fresh or frozen peas into their water tub and watch how excited that makes them. They generally like anything green floating in water, but they especially love peas. And there just might be a good reason for that. Peas are high in niacin.

Take a Peek at my Blue Seal Chick Days Tour!

May 5, 2018

Whew! I'm finally home (for awhile at least!) after finishing the last leg of my nearly six-week tour of New England with Blue Seal Feed. I had such a great time. I want to personally thank everyone who came to one of my almost two dozen events. It was so nice to be able to say hello and put a face to the names I see on social media. I also want to thank everyone at Blue Seal who worked so hard to ensure the tour went as smoothly as it did.  

How Much Space Does a Homestead Need for Livestock?

April 30, 2018

I think many of us (myself included!) dreamed of owning a farm or homestead for awhile before it actually became a reality. There are lots of considerations when buying any type of property, but when you're planning on becoming a homesteader or hobby farmer, the type of livestock - and how many of each - you plan to raise should be one of the major considerations.

What is Pasty Butt: Prevention and Treatment for Baby Chicks

April 26, 2018

Pasty butt is a fairly common, potentially life-threatening condition that can occur in baby chicks. Fortunately it's easy to detect, treat and even prevent, but since it's so common, it is something that every backyard chicken keeper needs to be aware of.

10 Things to Consider Before You Start Raising Chickens

April 23, 2018

Before you dive into the world of backyard chicken keeping, there are a few things you know know. Let me help guide you through the process in this article I wrote recently for my friends at Lehman's. They offer a great selection of chicken supplies and a chicken delivery service that makes it easy to purchase baby chicks online. But before you do, be sure to read my original post at

Ten Things to Know Before Raising Chickens

Disclaimer: I was compensated for this article by Lehman's® , but all opinions are my own.

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©2018 by Fresh Eggs Daily, Inc. All rights reserved.

Pecking Order IS a Real Thing in Chicken Flocks

April 17, 2018

Chickens take their pecking order very seriously. As flock animals, they adhere to a very strict social hierarchy and establishing a pecking order actually helps to keep peace in a flock. Being high in the order equates to being "big man or woman on campus" and enjoying the top roost at night, first dibs on food and treats, the rooster's attention, and even the prime spot in the sun to take a dust bath.

Take a Peek at my Week - Apr 8-14

April 14, 2018

This week I left the snowy fields of Maine and headed to Lancaster County, Pennsylvania for the next leg of my Blue Seal Home Fresh Chick Days tour. I spent an incredible couple of days in one of the most beautiful rural areas of the state, as we drove from feed store to feed store past gorgeous sprawling farms and homesteads. I loved seeing all the cows, sheep and goats grazing as we sped past. I ate some really delicious local food while I was there and also met some amazing people (and store mascots!) at each event. Thank you to everyone for making me feel so welcome. 

Create a Better Nesting Area for your Chickens

April 10, 2018

It's important to provide a nice clean, quiet, safe place for your chickens to lay their eggs. The nesting boxes should be a sanctuary where your hens feel secure and calm in order to encourage egg production. 

DIY Seed Packet Coop Bunting

April 3, 2018

It seems that winter has been hanging on much longer than usual this year, so being desperate for some spring cheer, I made this simple DIY Seed Packet Coop Bunting for my chickens. It really brightens up the coop. I love it and I think my girls do too! 

Take a Peek at our Week - Mar 25 to 31

March 31, 2018

Still stuck halfway between winter and spring with snow on the ground, I enjoyed this week at home. It was nice to be able to relax a bit, head out to Barnes & Noble and then for a lunch date with my husband, and just have time to be home with no real deadlines or obligations. 

Three Secrets to a Clean Chicken Coop

March 27, 2018

I get lots of questions from readers on a wide variety of topics ranging from health issues, questions about hatching and raising chicks, to questions about egg laying and chicken behavior. 

But one question I've started getting more and more frequently is "How do you keep your coop so clean?" The question has come in the wake of my shiplapping the entire inside of my coop and painting every visible surface white. 

Take a Peek at our Week - Mar 18 to 24

March 24, 2018

The calendar says spring, but much of the country is still in the grips of winter it seems! I welcome as much snow as Mother Nature wants to dump on us from say, November through February, but after that, I'm over it. I have seeds to plant and chicks to hatch! But in the meantime, we're enjoying having piles of fresh eggs again for breakfast! 

5 Tips to Keep your Chickens Mite-Free Naturally

March 20, 2018

If I had a dollar for every time I've heard, "If you use straw in your coop, your chickens will get mites" or "If you raise chickens long enough, you'll eventually have a mite problem." I can tell you, I would have a LOT of dollars! In fact, I would probably be lying in a hammock on a deserted island somewhere sipping an umbrella drink!

Take a Peek at my Week Mar 11-17

March 17, 2018

The calendar may say spring is just around the corner, but apparently New England didn't get the memo because we saw snow nearly every day this week, amounting to more than 18" on top of the foot or so we already had on the ground. Winston was in grave danger of being completely buried, but he still seems to really enjoy the snow! The girls aren't fans at all but are still popping out eggs - which is nice, and we've even got two girls who are thinking about going broody, so I've spiffed up the nesting boxes for them with new nesting pads and Coop Confetti nesting herbs. But we're all kind of ready for some green grass, fresh herbs and flowers. We love snow, but enough is enough...enjoy this peek at our week.

Choosing Chicken Breeds

March 13, 2018

Choosing which breeds of chickens you want to raise can be overwhelming, since there are more than one hundred different breed to choose from. Do you want good layers? Friendly hens? Different colored eggs? Let me help guide you through the process in this article I wrote recently for my friends at Lehman's. They offer a great selection of chicken supplies and a chicken delivery service that makes it easy to purchase baby chicks online. To read the original post on this topic, check out my article on

Disclaimer: I was compensated for this article by Lehman's® , but all opinions are my own.

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©2018 by Fresh Eggs Daily, Inc. All rights reserved.

Salt Cured Egg Yolks

When you raise chickens, it seems to always be "feast or famine" when it comes to eggs. When your hens are laying, you'll spend hours surfing Pinterest looking for new ways to use up all those extra eggs. Maybe you'll  try freezing them or experiment with other methods of preserving them. You might even try making your own mayonnaise. I've done all those things when eggs are plentiful, but one thing I had never tried was salt curing eggs. Until now.

"Pannukakku" Finnish Cast Iron Skillet Oven Pancake

March 8, 2018

Each culture seems to have its on unique take on various foods. Whether it be burritos, crepes or eggrolls, the basic idea is the same, but different countries have put their own twist on the concept of food enclosed in a wrapper.  Same with the dumpling and ravioli. In the case of Pannukakku or Finnish Oven Pancake, it's Finland's answer to a Dutch Baby or German pancake. Sort of a cross between a popover and a souffle, the Pannukakku is a custardy version of the dish that is baked in the oven, and it's the perfect way to use some of your delicious fresh eggs.
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