Sunday, January 20

Somewhere outside, beyond the howl and murmur of the wind…and the sway of the wispy trees, is spring. It is getting lighter earlier in the morning and staying lighter longer in the evening. This is truly a sign that spring is in the air, yet we still have February and March to get through first. The wind outside is very vicious right now, dislodging loose, dead tree limbs which are falling into the yard.

It is 9:15 AM and I will soon go to the hospice gift shop, open it, put out the signs and build a fire to get it toasty warm inside for potential customers. We were open yesterday from 10 until four, and had only one customer the entire time. That was fine, because I replaced the old computer with a newer XP platform tower and reloaded all the data.

We also removed the Christmas tree and packed it and all the decorations away until next December. There is still some outside decorations which need to be taken down. These things can be packed into the potting shed, where they will remain until next year.

From the number of new customers stopping at the hospice gift shop, it is obvious that the signs at the end of the road and in the center of Greenville are doing their job. I was concerned that potential customers would not know where West Road is and therefore, would not be able to find the shop. However, Vick pointed out that most people traveling today have a GPS unit in their car and can therefore find almost any place with little effort. That was a great point and removed the need for any kind of arrows to be placed upon the signs. Anyone who wants to find a place in this day and age can do so with no trouble.

Once the gift shop is open and Vick is downstairs to watch for customers, I will take the cub cadet and bring in a new load of wood pellets, unloading them onto the porch. It appears we may get more snow in the beginning of the week and I want to make sure that there are plenty of pellets on the porch before that may happen. I will do that today, because tomorrow Vick has her acupuncture appointment which takes up most of the day because it falls in the middle of the day and with travel usually takes 3 to 4 hours. We must rush home to be here by 5 o’clock, because there is a customer coming to buy a dozen of our silver Cockrell meat chickens. Obviously someone has told him that we have really excellent, free range meat birds for sale… year-round.

I’m sure looking forward to spring and getting some new layer chicks into the brooding house to rebuild our flock. The recent sickness took so many of our new layers before they could even start laying. We must do something to get beyond 4 to 5 eggs a day from a flock of almost 65 hens. Unfortunately, we have not replaced chickens soon enough, and ours are now old enough that they have slowed down in their egg production. This is a normal occurrence which can only be rectified by replacing chickens on a regular basis. To remain in business, we must now become a little more business intelligent. We are now prepared to start doing this.

Watch the blog later this evening for some new pictures. I will take some by carrying the camera in my pocket today. I’ll take some new snapshots from around the farm and in the gift shop. I will post them later today when we are finished with the formwork in the gift shop is closed.

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053177 Cluckin' "A" Critter Farm, LLC

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