Happy Fall!

Hello!  Happy First Day of Fall!

This picture is our western view about 10 minutes into the fall season.


This week we’ve enjoyed morning temperatures in the high 50’s, but the highs are in the mid-80’s so it doesn’t feel quite like fall yet.  For now, we’re settling for some beautiful signs of autumn..

The goldenrods are plentiful this September, brightening up the landscape around the pond and at the edge of the woods.

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I just read up on them and they say they are edible.  I think I will resist, though.  I already like too much stuff.

Bright red berries on our dogwood tree signal fall as well as…

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… just a tease of color looking up into our woods…

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In case you are wondering, Mr. Fifty Shades has been working diligently on the “Mow”rage for the tractor/mower.  As you can see, the roof is coming along.

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Until next time,  Fifty Shades of Green Acres




A Big Day

Mr. Fifty Shades and I have been hanging out with each other for a good long while.  Through the years, he’s turned to me from time to time and asked…

(please hum The Beatles song, “When I’m 64” as you read this)

When we get older, gray in our hair

Many years from now

Can we maybe make a big move to a farm

With dogs and hens and a rooster alarm?

We will be happy

It will be fun

But, I just gotta know

Will you still need me, will you still feed me

when I’m 64?

Yes, Mr. Fifty Shades – and if we are so lucky – and just because it rhymes, you’ve got me through 84 as well!  

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I love you, Mr. Fifty Shades – Happy Birthday!

and lots of wet nosed kisses and purrs from your four legged family @ Fifty Shades of Green Acres


My Midsummer Night’s Dream

My midsummer night’s dream…

Getting ready for our evening walk with our well behaved dogs…


…Mr. Fifty Shades went outside before me.  A few minutes later, he stuck his head in the door and said, “Honey bunch, you better get a sweater, it’s a bit chilly out here.”

…And, then I woke up.  It was all a delirious dream.  It’s hot and steamy here and has been so for FOREVER.  Has it been hot where you are?  Part of our desire to move up here was to enjoy the cooler weather.  In wishing for a cool down, we know we’re not alone – the whole country has been enduring the high temps. The heat must be due to the nonexistent climate change.  That’s all I can think.

Just for something fun to occupy his time, Mr. Fifty Shades began a new project.  This mower has earned its keep and should not endure the indignity of having to share space in our garage…see how pathetic this is?…


After it was determined that this tough little mower deserved a building of its own, Mr. Fifty Shades designed the building and began laying it out. The Deere’s new digs will feature a garage door and two additional doors, electricity, three windows, a 50 inch television, and a spa.  Ha!

Coincidentally and concurrently with the planning, our 14 year old (soon to be 15) friend was looking for a way to earn some money this summer.  Wow – don’t you love coincidences?  Mr. Fifty Shades and his young assistant tackled the job…

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…and the rest of the summer is kind of a blurry, humid, impossibly scorching span of time.

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Here is the status as of today:


…still some work to be done, but Mr. Fifty Shades believes it will be move in ready in about six weeks or so.  We are all so happy for Mr. Deere.

In milestone news, these are the three little chicks that hatched on June 12th.  They grow up so fast…

Time will tell if they are hens or roosters (they aren’t saying).


Until next time,

Fifty Shades of Green Acres





It’s felt like summer for a while.  Officially, though, summer arrived in all its sweltering glory on June 20 at 6:34 p.m. (thank you Farmer’s Almanac) and this picture was taken about 30 minutes following the start of summer.  It looks pretty steamy out there!


Random Happenings at Fifty Shades of Green Acres…

  • We are expanding the chicken coop…

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…because two of our hens hatched some adorable chicks.

Aren’t they cute?


Oh, wait.  The pictures come out better if you remove the lens cap first.

Here they are!  Two Momma Hens are taking care of three little chicks.  They are a week old here.  They were a bit camera shy for their first week and the Momma Hens were quite protective.  We learned that the Momma hens need to be kept apart from each other while they tend to their chicks, as well away from the other hens and rooster for about a month, so they are in temporary quarters for now.

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  • The hummingbirds are back!  They stay busy sipping nectar all day.  We often see four or five of them vying for position around the feeders.

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  • I managed to get into some poison ivy.  It was an itchy mess, but, I only complained a little…only once, really…for a three week period of time.  🙂  I’m all recovered now.

Until next time,

Fifty Shades of Green Acres


While we were away…

We traveled last week…

For this big day…


…but, wait…impossible – she is only 10 years old – she could not be graduating from high school.  Well – ok – maybe.


while we were away…

this happened…


…and this…


…and there was also a development with our chickens.

The hens were busy while we were away and laid about 15 eggs.  We only collected 5 when we got home.

The reason?

Can you see these two ladies?


Maybe you need a close up view.

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Our other ten eggs are under these gals, who have decided to go broody.  This means that they want to hatch their eggs and raise chicks.  Each hen has about five eggs upon which she is setting. This has happened before and we have discouraged it by removing the hen from the nest and extracting the eggs.  This time, Mr. Fifty Shades thinks it will be fun to let them hatch out some chicks.  Mr. Fifty Shades is channeling his inner Scarlet O’Hara and thinking…I shall never go eggless again!  

Until next time,

Fifty Shades of Green Acres Team

Wishin’ and Hopin’

This is our fourth year planting a garden and each year I’ve found it incredible that from these packets…


….something like this happens…


Today, we’re planting tomato and cucumber plants that we started in our basement from seeds.  Once the seeds start growing and begin to show leaves, we bring them to our porch for a few weeks where they harden off in preparation to go into the ground.


And, even though our annual gardens have produced some wonderful vegetables and fruit, every year as we’re planting them into the soil I think – this could never result in an actual tomato, cucumber, corn stalk…So, I find myself wishin’ and a hopin’ this year that our luck will continue!

We’re already seeing signs that it might…

The mesclun mix and arugula show promise…


We harvested our first strawberries of the year yesterday…

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And if you get out your magnifying glass… you’ll see that a tiny little sprig of parsley is emerging…


In other news…

Mr. Fifty Shades is determined that we will be able to have a picnic whenever the mood strikes.  In the new fenced in area for Sage and Scout (we now call it “the playpen”), we have a new picnic table that he built in his spare time.  When we’re working in the garden this year, we’ll have a place to come in and take a break or have a pic-a-nic.  🙂

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Hope you’re having a happy spring!


Fifty Shades of Green Acres


En Garde!

Mr. Fifty Shades Takes Up Fencing!

It’s true.  Mr. Fifty Shades has been busy this spring planning, laying out, and building a new fenced in area for Scout and Sage.

First – he drilled holes for the fence posts…this unwieldy post hole digger needs to be positioned just right in order for the hole to be straight and to be deep enough.  The dimensions of the fence are 160′ by 60′ and there are about 50 post holes.


Next, the posts are set into the holes and then positioned so they are plumb and aligned with all the other posts.  Then, mix up a batch of concrete and pour in the hole so the post is stable.


Repeat this process a million times…well…maybe 50 times.


Once a line of posts are in place, plumb and lined up, 48 inch high 2′ x 4′ welded wire stock fence is stretched and staples are nailed in to hold it in place.  The stock fence can’t be run continuously in the 100 foot rolls that we purchased it.  Instead, because of all the changes in elevation most sections of wire have to be cut in order to make the changes in grade.  Then cut all the 4×4 posts to the same 50 inch height and –

…get started with the boards…this trailer has 125 boards on it, each one an inch thick and 6 inches wide, rough-sawn, pressure treated poplar.  Honest.


Three boards from post to post…the boards are 16 feet in length…and heavy!  Again, because of the changes in elevation, each board had to be cut twice…once on each end to make them plumb and fit against the next or previous board.




While all of this was going on, Mr. Fifty shades constructed three gates.  Two are about 3 1/2 feet wide and one is a double- 7 feet wide so we can get the mower, tractor and other equipment into the fenced area.

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And then, just like magic…the fence is done…

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It’s beautiful.

Scout and Sage love it!  There is plenty of room to run and play and just relax.

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