Hens and Hay

We put new hay in the coop the other day…

big hens

Our girls go crazy for new hay in their coop…

big buff

This white one kept looking at me like “thanks lady for the hay”…

big hens hay

I sat down in the hay with them for a while…

big hay

Some of them dig down though the hay and all you see is tails in the air 😉

big hampshire

This was also a first for the adolescents and babies and they seemed to just enjoy it as well.

adolescents hay

It was a fun and entertaining time in the coop.

big new hamp

And it didn’t hurt it increased our egg production a little. Happy hens= Happy eggs 🙂

 

 

 

 

Coop Cleaning…

Last week we finally got a nice enough day to clean out the chicken coop. This means we rake, shovel, and scrape out all the old hay, shavings, dirt, and whatever else is in there. In it’s place we disinfect ( in a way that doesn’t hurt the chickens) and while that is setting in we clean out and spray down the boxes and get anything we can out into the sun light and spray it off with the water hose.  Once everything is as clean as we can get it we put down fresh hay and new shavings in the boxes.

chicken-coop

Our girls always love scratching around in the new hay and seeing what they can find. Its like a kid on their birthday playing with the box. Its funny to hear their happy noises and see them explore. Even the dogs try to go in and check it out (if we would let them).We rearranged things some this season to give them more space inside incase they have to stay in with the winter weather.

chickens-coop-scrathc

Chase is always a good supervisor for chores that take a while. Baxter is happy to sit on the porch and sleep.

chase-truck

I’m glad we got this chore done and have the girls already for the winter. One chore down… many more to go 😉

Snow… Snow.. Snow… Cold

The snow came down the other day. I was so happy to be inside (not happy to be sick, but grateful I didn’t have to go outside). The neighbors barn was barley visible in the snow.

Barn snow

Our tractors were hard to see as well until the snow slowed down…tractor snow

It was a pretty snow and the coop roof was covered in a matter of hours, but it helped to keep the heat in for the chickens.

Coop snow

The trees were heavy with snow… Tree snow

And the branches were bowing under the weight… heavy tree snow

Everything was covered by the snow. Snow cover

Towards evening the little light we had was going away and the night was taking over.

Dark snow

Since the big snow there have been more flurries. Flurries

But the biggest thing has been the cold. It has been below 0* outside late evenings, night, and early morning. The snow was deep and getting the coop dug out took some effort on hubbys part since I was not in full functioning order.

coop sun snow

When the sun finally came out the snow was so pretty and nice to look out upon. Sun Snow

Hope your are safe if you are having this snow and hope it doesn’t prevent you from having blessed weekend. 🙂

 

Ten Things Learned While Raising Chickens

Keeping chickens is a big job. Much of the time you are learning new things about chicken keeping and the rest of the time it is maintaining of food, water, health, etc. Along this process you learn a lot and have a lot of fun.

Here are ten things I have learned so far about raising chickens:

1. The more you handle them as young chicks, while they are still in the  heat lamp box, it will make your chickens easier to catch, better tempered, and just easier to work with should you need to if they get sick, hurt, etc.buff chicks

2. Loosing your first chicken is the worst… it never gets easy, but each one after isn’t as hard.Chickn

3. Having your own fresh eggs when ever you need them is the best feeling.New eggs

4. Knowing you “grew” your own food makes you feel accomplished and healthy.Sepia Chick

5. Build the coop/run you want from the beginning, chickens don’t like changes to where they lay and sleep. They will show you by laying fewer eggs for a while.Chickens laying

6. Hubby says they are a lot more work then you think, cost more money then you think, and poop a lot.Buff bottom

7. Each chicken has their own personality, just like a person.Buff chick

8. Chickens like mischief and some jump fences.Buff chick fence

9. Chickens love tasty treats especially watermelon, corn cobs, and bread.Big chick breaks in

10. Chickens provide amusement and comic relief… no TV needed.Chickens run

Chicken Helper

I think I got a touch of a cold today so I stayed inside and did the chores that needed to get done before napping and then making dinner. I had to check on the chickens and get the eggs as hubby let them out before work. Chase is my chicken helper… He loves to go out to the coop with me and keeps me company while I do the chores there. Today he posed for me in the snow 🙂 Chase Face

What a good and handsome boy he is 🙂

The snow melted some today and the “ladies” ventured further out in the yard and explored more. I think the patches of grass that poked though the snow helped. 2 chicks

This week is scheduled to be a busy one and I hope to have some time to rest and get rid of this cold. I hope you all are doing well and have a blessed week 🙂

Miscaculation and Many Projects

This past week you may have noticed an absence of my posts… well hubby and I took off some time from work to get projects done around the house and in the yard. We had a lot of help from our Supervisor Chase…

He made sure things were done up to his standards 😉 The first project we tackled was the kitchen floors. The old floor was lament and in bad shape in some areas…

Some of the old floor to the left under the new floor we put down…

So we replaced it with a new ceramic floor…

The boys on the new floor

Then hubby got sick for a few days so the next big project we put off until this past weekend when my mom and her husband could come help. Our old chicken run had been blown down/apart by all the bad winds this past year. The girls were in need of a new safer run. We had built them a house out of some old rabbit hutch’s and they love them as they are off the ground and have plenty of space for 10 chickens. I made a plan to build the coop to be 16 ft long by 8 foot high and wide…

So if you didn’t catch that 8 foot tall… hubby is almost 6 foot so I wanted to make sure he didn’t have to bend or hit his head like he did on the last coop. So I made it a little tall… oh well.

The girls seem to love their new home and are spending more time in the new run then they did in the old one. We plan to add some roosts on the sides and place to store things as well as tarp’s or siding for this winter so the run is safe and dry.

I wanted to update you on our girls too especially our hurt girl. She is getting better and gaining some needed weight…

The lady who was hurt

Compared to the other girls she still has some weight to gain, but we are happy she is alive and accepted back into her flock/brood 🙂

One of the other ladies

Other than that while we were on our staycation (a stay at home vacation) I got some canning done, magazines read, and cleaning done. For dinner tonight we had my Baxter’s Potato Kale Chowder. It was so yummy and made my migraine better. That should bring you up to date… have a good rest of the week 🙂

The sun came out :)

The sun was out in full force today. It was such a beautiful day I was so eager to get home and into the yard. Image

The dogs spent the day laying in the sun and playing.

Chase

Baxter

The chickens were all over the yard and sunning themselves.

 

 

Hubby spent time mowing the grass and weed eating. I spent time in the garden, cleaning up the chicken coop, and playing with the pups. Over all it was a… good day sunshine 😉

Chicken coop, dogs, and life…

Today was the first nice day I had to be outside and work. The chicken house got a cleaning and I finished the new boxes for “the girls” (my Dad was helpful in this process as he had a lot of good ideas). “The Girls” ran around like crazy enjoying the bugs and other goodies that they could get now that the rain had stopped and the ground was still soft. The dogs and the chickens continue to learn how to share the yard space, but are doing very well so far…

The dogs and the chickens sharing the yard

"The girls" getting some grub

Chase and "the girls"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Baxter decided to stand guard over the flock today (is a bunch of chickens a flock?)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The best news of the day is we got our first two

eggs with double yolks.

Yummy… they were delicious.

 

 

 

 

I also did some gardening and planted things that could go in the ground now. I finished putting seed in their pots to start growing to go in the ground later.

The birds were also out again and enjoying the bird feeders.

I couldn't get close enough without scaring this cardinal off

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I also noticed out tulips had started to bloom and they are such a pretty red.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

It was such a nice day… I hope it was for you too.

I wanted to thank all my new (and other) followers and anyone who has liked or left a comment. I really appreciate it as today has been my best day for traffic to my site yet 🙂 I hope you all have a blessed week.

A new coop…

I have been so busy since coming back from vacation. Today we spent most of the day building a new nesting place for our chickens (I’ll try to get a picture when we are done). Their old one is getting too small and since the new birds have started laying they need more room. We are extending their old coop to give them more laying boxes.

It also made me reflect on how these girls were just babies a few months ago and how much they have grown…

When they were a few weeks old...

When we got them they could fit in the palm of my hand (see above).

And now I am lucky to get them under an arm…

4 of the girls now...

But now you can see personalities come out… who is dominate, who is the runt, and who likes what. It is neat to watch them and I am loving the fresh eggs. Yumm…

Tomorrow the coop gets painted on the outside and the girls can enjoy their new laying boxes.