Ranch Life

From city life to country life. Our joys, challenges and vexations. You are invited to jump in and share your experiences and offer advice with encouragement.

Location: Texas, United States

Want more? http://www.flickr.com/photos/ burntbiscuitranch/ Carolyn Simons Manka on Facebook Website: BurntBiscuitRanch.com

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Good morning!

It has been awhile since I posted on this, my one and only, blog.
As time moves on, I know my children and grandchildren will enjoy reading about this place, Burnt Biscuit Ranch, where they have spent weekends, holidays and vacations. Thus my vacation from the blog is over........

My good mornings begin much the same each day.
My eyes open at 6:30 sans an alarm clock. 
First job:   One, two, three, four out the door go our dogs.  Yes, one has been added to the 'house herd' since I last posted here.  Three come back very quickly but the 'baby' of the group has to be called and called and called.  She goes in search of deer, raccoons, skunks, mice, coyotes and more with her nose to the ground sniffing scat and looking for footprints.  
A "keep-your-teeth-clean" cookie for each and dry kibble for Maggie Sniffles holds them while I check email and my Facebook account.  This is MY time but lasts only a few minutes.  Three barn cats are at the backdoor. As I give them each a small bowl of food to start their day, the horses begin their calls for breakfast, the roosters begin singing their song and the dogs demand breakfast.  And so the day begins!

Saturday, May 01, 2010

She was sitting in the den judging a short story contest when she saw movement out of the corner of her eye.
On her front porch was this 12 - 15 inch long Pileated Woodpecker. He was checking out the new cedar posts he had recently added. Woody was not too keen on the hard cedar and left but not before she got several photos, taken from inside the house.

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Wednesday, February 24, 2010


It doesn't happen very often in SE Texas but always welcome by her, a transplanted miswesterner.

First came the sleet, then rain followed by snow and rain falling together.

Finally, the snow began in earnest - big, fat, fluffy flakes fell for over 6 hours.

She ran around the house taking pictures and dancing with joy at the beauty of it all.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Update regarding Alvin, the house chicken (see July post):
Alvin was moved to the nursery in the hen house following a few gagging sessions upon cleaning out her Victorian home kept in their kitchen. The birdcage was cleaned at least 20 times per day but chickens simply were not meant to be house pets. Honest!
After several weeks in the nursery, she is allowed to roam around with the other chickens following much pecking and chasing by the bullies (guineas) of Autumn's House of Hens.
However, she remains very much a pet chicken. She rushes for the door every time it is opened.
She likes to be carried around and loves to ride in the golf cart like any other child.
Will she ever figure out that she is a chicken?

Thursday, July 02, 2009

Alvin, the house chicken

Wednesday, July 01, 2009

The snake is back.
This was sadly learned after purchasing three Americana chicks. The Americana chickens are also called Easter eggers because they lay blue and green eggs. The three chicks disappeared from the nursery the first night in their new home. The snake was able to get through the tiny holes in the wiring, eat and digest the chicks before slipping out of the nursery and the hen house.
After a week, two more Americana chicks were placed into the nursery. These chicks were a week older and bigger. But not big enough. The snake found them and only one survived.
That was enough! She brought the surviving chick back to the house and placed her into a dog crate in the den, much to his chagrin.
Five days later, the chick has found residence in a brand new blue Victorian model bird cage and lives in the air conditioned comfort of the ranch house. Because of her chubby chipmunk cheeks, she has been named "Alvin".
How can you spoil a chicken? It can be done. Whenever, she leaves the room, Alvin is very vocal. Whenever she comes near her cage, Alvin jumps up and down at the door begging to be picked up. Once the door is opened, he hops into her loving hands. She takes him out onto the porch, puts him in her lap where he grooms himself and then falls asleep.
Another new pet for Burnt Biscuit Ranch.

Friday, May 22, 2009

Readers of this blog first met the 'displaced guinea' back in May, 2007. It was a bittersweet story but the story has changed dramatically, now, 2 years later.
A few weeks ago, a mangy coyote caught and killed one of their 3 guineas. Shortly thereafter the displaced guinea renewed her love affair with the family Suburban. However, this time she has developed a jealous streak.
Initially, whenever anyone walked near 'her' SUV, she flapped her wings and ran up to them.
Her jealousy escalated and she now attacks whenever anyone tries to gets near the car. Ever had a hole in your leg that was put there by a guinea fowl? It hurts. Or scratch marks on your back from the bird's talons? Ouch.
A solution is being sought but help is needed soon. They have 30 people coming over on Memorial Day. Who knows which car she may 'take up with'?