Snapshots of my Thursday...

The weather is so cold at the moment, all I want to do is stay inside and bake! I fiddled with the recipe that I used for the bagels last week, and also had a go at a different shaping method. Do you ever get so stuck in a rut that you do things just because that's how you've been doing them and for no other reason? I do and it drives me crazy sometimes, because there are probably much better ways to do things but I don't try them out of habit for my old ways. So silly! So, back to the bagels, I tried shaping them today by rolling them into a ball and then making a hole in the center with my finger and stretching them out this way... and you know what, I think I like it better than my old way! Previously, my bagels would always split open around the curves, but today, they were much neater. I know they're only going to get eaten up anyway, but it's nice to be able to choose how they'll least up to a point, anyway!

I also used raw sugar in the poaching liquid instead of brown sugar, and topped up the potato water in the dough with some whey that I had leftover from making some cream cheese/labneh.

Outside, our little injured duck has been spending her days in the garden. She still gets locked back up again at night in her pen, and has made a cosy little spot for herself in amongst my sad looking hydrangea. Her hen-pecked wound has healed well and the feathers have grown back, all except for the her tail feathers which are taking longer, for some reason....

She is content to sit most days and is not terribly active...I'm told this is a Muscovy trait?

The chooks are enjoying their new surroundings - most days...when it's not howling with wind and raining. I usually take three out to the chook dome and five out to the fruit tree area. Sometimes they switch teams and it's quite funny herding them in the right direction when they want to go someplace else!

They've really made an impact on the ground in the fruit tree area. Depending on where I scatter the grain, I can (somewhat) control where they 'cultivate'. The little duck is producing quite a bit of bedding litter, so I will add this to the site for them to dig in. It's amazing how short the grass is being kept in this area since they started visiting...I used to loathe bringing the lawn mower around to this slope, and now they do it all for me!

Cutie, the Australorp
Below is my fruit tree-planting system. After digging the hole, I add the tree, a cut off section of soaker hose (to assist in summer waterings), a stake and plenty of manure. Once it is levelled, I place mesh sheeting (found at the tip) over the immediate root zone of the tree, to allow the chooks access to control weeds and fertilize but to prevent them from digging. It's working great! I just need to find some more mesh for the remainder of the trees....

And way back in March, I picked up some loganberry plants, which have finally found a new home on the re-purposed swing frame. Not sure how they'll go/grow, but you have to try these things, right?

I hope you're enjoying your Thursday, whatever you are up to!


  1. Wow, what a productive day you've had! Your chickens look so happy and it's so nice to see the little duck well on the way to recovery...

    We shape bagels like that too - sticking a finger into the middle of a ball of dough. I tried using the sausage method, but my bagels used to come apart! I always find bagels hard work - standard joke in our house is that the process begins with deep breathing to build our chi... ;-)

  2. Your little duck's picture made me go all mushy. I love ducks with a passion. I wanted an ornamental duck farm when I was younger. That way I figured I wouldn't have to kill them and could just rent them out to the stately homes of England for their ponds and lakes. Like so many brilliant ideas I never did it of course!

    Love the bagels, I did them for the first time this year, and they are a bit of a performance, but good fun all the same.

  3. I am so glad the duck is doing well and your coop is something to admire.

    We tried your bagels on Sunday and had them toasted for breafast with cream cheese and salmon on Monday.

    I just want to let you know that my post today nominated you as a "Blog with Substance". Do check out the award.

  4. Wow, your bagels look so delicious! And your sweet little duck looks so much better now. :)

  5. those bagels look beautiful - I thought it was a photo from a bakery. very nice.

  6. It's a much better way to shape them, isn't it Celia. I hear you when it comes to the breathing for chi! ;)

    Joanna, I do like your duck idea! Renting the flock would be ideal for residents of stately homes who wouldn't want to burden themselves with the pesky side long term care, lol! Perhaps one day, eh?
    And yes, a bit of a performance, but worth it :)

    I'm pleased to hear you tried the bagels, Wendy. Thankyou for the award, I have replied on your blog :)

    She's doing a little better each day, Tina, thankyou! :)

    Thanks, Sonya, I was really happy with how these ones turned out :)


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Hi there, so nice of you to stop by! Thanks for sharing your thoughts, I love hearing what you are up to. Christine x

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