If I recall, the first part of the month I was contending with animal issues. Three of my hens were so badly feather pecked that open wounds were occurring again, and their neck and back and bottoms were bare. Whenever I observe them, the offender is usually a golden sexedlink who was the problem back in June, and probably has been ever since. I did some research and learned you can put Vicks vapo rub on the chickens where they are getting pecked to prevent it from happening. This I ventured to do on a nice sunny day, leaving the dog in the backyard while I was in the fenced off chicken yard area, trying to pick them up one by one to check for pecking and apply the rub, and put them in their coop so I knew which had been checked. Once the chickens figured out what I was doing they were not cooperating, especially two--a black and a golden--that were really badly pecked. In hindsight doing this alone, with the dog in the yard, was a big mistake. Sky saw me "chasing chickens" and started going nuts that he couldn't be in on the action. I had six of eight chickens checked, and finally got the golden chicken in my hands when I saw a white streak fly across the chicken yard and realized Sky had figured a way to get through the fence. I had to drop the chicken in the coop and chase the dog, screaming at him to stop, who was furiously chasing the black chicken. He didn't stop until he got her, and she got chewed on a little. I caught up to him and kicked him in the ribs and sent him sprawling, which turned out to be a bad move because he ran away from me around the coop so I couldn't catch him. I went back to the chicken who was trying to bury herself in the dirt and she was slobbered on but not hurt thankfully, and put her in the coop and tried to figure out how to grab my dog who had no intention of being caught. I had to go get a dog treat in the house to lure him out, and stupidly didn't tie him up, but left him in the backyard again thinking he got in through the gate and that I was being smart to lock the gate behind me. I picked up the black hen to apply the rub and once again a white streak came into the chicken yard, this time I saw he was squeezing in at the end of the fence where a gap is, and once again I had to lure my dog out, this time tying him up. I finally got that golden chicken taken care of while Sky whined and barked that I was chasing chickens without him.
The next time a few days later when I applied vicks I had Fiora with me and Sky was in the house. It was much easier. The problem was, that dumb cannibal golden chicken was still pecking the others. I gave it a few more days and observed them again, and sure enough the cannibal was hen pecking every few minutes despite the Vicks. I read on a chicken forum that some do become addicted to pecking, even when they have adequate nutrition and ample room and there are no reasons for it, the only way to stop it is to cull the offending chicken or isolate her. So I turned half the chicken run under the coop into a isolated pen and feed her separate from the others. She is still laying eggs, and so she can live until she stops. I'm sure she doesn't like her life but oh well! My chickens are growing feathers back finally.
The other animal problem occurred the next week, a board we were using to shade the chicken run fell over in a wind storm and happened to fall right on one of our red chickens and though her leg doesn't look or feel broken, she couldn't walk. We kept her in the laundry room for a week, 6 hens wandering in the chicken yard, one in prison, and one in my house. I couldn't bring myself to put her down, I kept her inside until she could stand and hobble around, and she was squawking quite a bit, so I put her back in the coop. She still can't move much but hopefully the others won't peck her to death.
The rest of the first half of November was mostly routine work and school. Jared and I went on a temple trip with his siblings and spouses to do endowments for Amy's family names, which was a choice experience.
So on to the last half with pictures. I got to stay with and watch over Grandma Rappleye overnight while my parents were away for their anniversary. My parents have created a great environment for my grandma's post rehab care in their master suite. We had Costa Vida salads and watched a movie and the 9:00 news. She kept saying "I'm so glad there are so many people who take such good care of me!" It was fun to be with her. Savanna came with me and hung out with/played video games with Joseph and Krystal.
Savanna is part of and participated in a DROP foundation charity event, hosting refugee families for a thanksgiving dinner. She actually arranged the venue at the Lindon Community Center and made decorations and food for the event. We came and enjoyed some food. I had to hurry home because Weston was very sick that day with a stomach bug and missed his first intrasquad gym meet. :( It kind of ruined his scout camp out for him too.
The next Monday Weston was feeling better but Jared came home from basketball early because he had rolled a metal chair rack over his big toe at basketball. I washed and bandaged it up and went downstairs to get an ice pack for it and heard a crash and Weston saying "Dad dad!" Sure enough Jared had fainted and fallen off the chair onto the floor. I tried to calm Weston down saying he had just fainted because of pain, and I knelt down and tried to arouse him. After a few minutes instead of coming out of the fainting spell Jared started breathing intermittently and erratically, and then stopped breathing altogether. Then his body started to seize and he started turning purple. I told Weston to get the girls thinking they could help me taking him outside or something to snap him out of it, I really had no idea what to do, and by the time they got up there I was trying to give Jared mouth to mouth to get air in him. Savanna was telling me not to do that, as a certified lifeguard she knew you don't give CPR to someone having a seizure, but I couldn't hear her because Jared started screaming. I was thoroughly alarmed by now and asked the girls where my phone was to call 911. It was in my pocket so they couldn't find it, Jared kept on screaming at the top of his lungs, at least he was breathing, but it sounded to me like he needed help, so Fiora gave me her phone and I called the paramedics. By the time they dispatched someone Jared was coming out of it and was yelling for a bucket because he felt nauseous. The lady on the line told me there was someone coming and Jared started saying "I'm fine!" But she wouldn't call it off saying they could just check on him. So we left him on the tile floor with a pillow and blanket, and in came a police officer and then 3 EMT's and they checked his vitals. He was fine after all, and they left, and Jared moved to his recliner to recover for a couple hours. He was normal the rest of the day except for a very sore toe. We were all traumatized, and I couldn't stop weeping for an hour.
The next morning I took Savanna in to get her wisdom teeth out. It was over due, she has only 3 wisdom teeth but they were very much pushing on her other teeth and one had crowned. She had her friend Aislyn come with for support and to record her coming out of anesthesia. She was a very dramatic girl, speaking spanish and crying randomly, then acting drunk and happy for a couple hours. Despite arguing with Savanna and not understanding why she wanted a friend along, I was very happy for Aislyn's help after while I cleaned her up, got her out of the car and to the couch, ran to pick up her medicine, changed guaze, helped her drink, and iced her face. She is recovering nicely but had a hard time on Thanksgiving with a sore mouth.
As if all that caregiving isn't enough, I got to babysit Knightly and Bourne Wednesday evening before thanksgiving while Jesse went on a date with Kelsy for his birthday. Those boys bring a sweet spirit into the home and I love having them over. Knightly calls me "Hollar" and is talking so much its so cute!
The fun doesn't stop there. Thanksgving this year was with the Barretts, so Thursday we went over with our turkey and salad and had a glorified potluck with nearly 40 family members! Everyone pitched in so the work was distributed equally, and we managed to eat only an hour after expected time. We had a ton of wonderful food, Jesse won the prize with his smoked turkey for best contribution, blew my turkey out of the water, but I did have good gravy. Jared took my dad and Gabe out to shoot guns for a while which they enjoyed, I got to hold Suzette. We sang "Thanksgiving Hosanna" as is tradition. Then after we went to Jesse's to watch a RiffTrax. A fun day.
Friday I actually braved shopping on Black Friday. Why? Because Savanna has been asking me to take her shopping for a long time but I'm always busy in the afternoons with work and in the evenings with callings or other obligations. So since Weston had gymnastics from 10 to 2 I thought I'd just take Sav out during those 4 hours and see what we could find. It was very successful actually. Jared came with us, and the crowds weren't bad at all, we found some good deals, some regular deals, and Savanna crossed all the things off her list she needed. Plus we got a nice soup lunch at Honey Baked Ham Co. Jared took me to see "Dr Strange" that evening which I LOVED and I think everyone should watch and own it, lots of great messages in it, and its entertaining. That was my reward day for a long week of working.
I got the Christmas decorations out after thanksgiving and worked hard getting that set up, then the girls convinced me to go to Walmart and get them some ginger bread houses so they could all be creative in the Christmas spirit. Fiora got her friend Sydney one too.
Can you tell which house is Weston's and which is Savanna's? I'll give you a hint, Weston spent 2 hours on his and Sav 20 minutes. Takes a lot of patience to do even these pre-made gingerbread houses, and Sav doesn't have a ton of that. (Their bedrooms look about like their houses do lol) Savanna was even laughing at the difference. We spent the last evening of our Thanksgiving break playing games as a family. So sad to have to go back to work the next day, but looking forward to Christmas.