Chickens in the Coop

They seem to be enjoying it. (For the record, it’s habitable but not finished. Eventually, what you see here will be painted awesome colors, inspired by grandmas who live in Miami and like to go to the beach, and there will be a chicken ladder instead of straw and a plank, arrrrrr matey.)

Chickens!

I finally figured out the purpose of Vine.

It has something to do with dogs and chickens. Make sure to un-mute, so you really get an idea of what it’s like at our place. Oof.

This is my stupid life . . . and why you need a predator-proof enclosure for your chickens. Although to tell you the truth, I think they just want to play with the chickens, but it’s not going to happen because I value the safety of our avian friends.

Photo Friday: Ladies

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Josephine, Margarita’s butt, Gertrude

Look how big they’re getting! Ben took the day off today to work on the chicken coop. We’re hoping to have it ready for them to move in by the end of the weekend. Holy hell they’re getting huge!

I love how we have bird curtains and a bird light fixture and . . . birds. Egads we’re crazy.

Dogs & Cats & Ice Cream Idea

"The dog will be the teacher."

Today Soren busted out my Fisher Price schoolhouse from the 70s. He set up the dog like so and declared, “The dog will be the teacher.” I’m pretty sure that’s the best idea anybody has had in a while.

Later, I took a nap with someone I will argue is the prettiest cat ever.

UntitledUntitledArguably, this is the prettiest cat ever.

As you might infer from the (lack of) content here lately, I’m in a funk. I’ve been grumpy and kind of sad and short-tempered for a few weeks now. My theory is that it’s because of the goddamn shittastic weather we’ve been having and that when the weather gets better, which it’s bound to do any time now because there’s only so many 20-something-degree, snowy days you can really have in April, things will start looking up. I hope, anyway.

Oh, one other thing! I made tofu satay with peanut sauce for dinner again tonight and I realized something. As I’ve been sort of fumbling toward quasi-veganism (the quasi being because at this point, I think it might be realistic for me to become vegan but I don’t see the point of not eating the eggs from my own chickens because that’s just silly), one of my biggest concerns has been peanut butter ice cream, which is pretty much my favorite thing in the world. I tried making vegan chocolate ice cream once and didn’t like it, mostly because of the coconut milk factor. I like coconut milk in spicy Thai food, but not in dessert items (for the record, I am firmly anti-Samoas and think they are a crime against cookies). So I was down on vegan ice cream until I realized that coconut milk actually works with peanut butter and, in fact, I’d like to make vegan ice cream that tastes exactly like a sweeter version of the peanut sauce that goes with tofu satay, red curry and lemon juice and all. Someone has probably already done this but I don’t even care. It’s my next dessert mission. I guess the fact that I have a dessert mission means I can’t be in all that much of a funk after all.

Chicken Social Hour

Every evening, we exile the dogs to the back of the house and bring the chickens into Soren’s room for Chicken Social Hour. We use Soren’s room because it has a door that closes (to keep the cats out) and wood floors (because chickens poop a lot and Chicken Social Hour is always followed by Dedicated Mopping Time).

Sometimes we worry that the girls get bored hanging out in their brooder (I’ll give you the details on our brooder soon) all the time. We also want them to be socialized and to enjoy hanging out with us, so we take this time to try to show them that hanging out with us is awesome and fun. I think we succeed most of the time. As I learned in chicken class, some (but not all) chickens enjoy being held. I’d say 2/3 of ours are into it. Josephine (the Red Star) is my BFF and loves to sit on my hand while I pet her and even sometimes dozes off for a second. Margarita (the Barred Rock) seems to enjoy this, too. Gertrude (the Delaware) will tolerate the holding and petting for a little but mostly wants to walk around and talk shit.

Honestly, it’s super fun for me to hang out with the chickens. Something about chickens is incredibly peaceful and relaxing. They’re just — I don’t know — really nice little animals. Well, birds, but you know what I mean. They wander around the room together, exploring and pecking, talking to each other — doing chicken things. They seem pretty attached to each other. They’re always in a little group and seem to get stressed out if they can’t see each other. Gertrude, especially. If you have her separated from the other chicks, even for a few seconds, she gets all squawky, like hey, where my girls at?!

We have about four or five more weeks until the ladies will move outside to their coop (which we still have to build). It’ll be great to have them situated out there, but I’m going to miss hanging out with them in the house.

chicken social hour

Margarita

chicken social hour

Margarita and a freshly bathed Soren

chicken social hour

Gertrude

chicken social hour

blurry Josephine

 

Unintentional Easter Chickies

So we got some chickens. It’s about damn time, right?

Here are the deets, not that people still say “deets”:

  • Gertrude is a Delaware who hatched on 3/13 (Delaware was not on my suggested list of breeds, but I figured what the hell. She’s a fluffy yellow chick who’s bigger and louder than the others.)
  • Josephine is a Red Star who hatched on 3/13 (She’s the most mellow of the chickens and likes to sleep. At first this worried us but she seems to be fine.)
  • Margarita is a Barred Rock who hatched on 3/20 (She’s the baby and very inquisitive. She’s named after my favorite book, The Master and Margarita.)

Sorry I only have bad iPhone photos so far. It’s hard to get good pictures of animals who are kind of afraid of you and live in a box with a giant red light over it.

They’re totally awesome. It’s easier than I thought to have baby chickens in a house with a 3-year-old, 3 dogs, and 4 cats. Everybody has been pretty cool so far. The chickens seem to enjoy listening to Lil Wayne, which is good. We’re hard at work on designing our coop, which we’ll have to get ready within the next 5 weeks or so.

chickiesGertrude, Josephine, and MargaritaOMGUntitledUntitledUntitledUntitledUntitledUntitledUntitled