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Hi, I'm Jaden, a professional recipe developer, food columnist and food photographer specializing in fast, fresh and easy recipes for the home cook. Most of my recipes are modern Asian! About meFast, fresh & easy recipes for the home cook.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Chicks new digs

After a week in their cozy $4 plastic bin, we thought it might be best to buy a larger temporary home II for the chicks. It’s temporary because Scott really wants to design and build a home from scratch for them….that’s LOVE. If you’ve never ventured into the world of custom chicken coops, be prepared for your mind to be blown. They are extravagant. In fact, I think this guy’s home is smaller than these coops. It will take time for the mega mansion coop to be built, so we’ve bought a coop at a local shop instead.

The chicks love to fly up to the top of the plastic bin and perch right on the ledge.

But since their butt hangs OVER the edge, they tend to poop on my floor. And on shoes.

And then unknowing suspect will put on shoes without looking. Yuck….I know, sometimes shit happens.

***

The chicks are growing fast! They’re beginning to lose their fuzzy baby down and growing soft tiny feathers.

Frenzy Cutie-Pie:

Oreo has the funniest expressions….

And if you hold her just right, she’ll fall asleep instantly….like within 10 seconds. I wish my kids would do that at night. Uh, well, I wish *I* could do that at night.

This gal right here?

Does the same thing.

I’m the Chick Whisperer.

We finally named the last two chicks, the boys’ best friend named one Starly.

My boys named the biggest chick Olivia Super-Star.

Have my kids been watching porn??! Where’d they get those names!??

Our New Chick Palace

First thing you need to do is to protect the chicks from predators – hawks, coyotes, alligators, extra-large rodents that give me heebie-jeebies, snakes. Friends have told us to dig and create an underground chicken wire barrier. But we just didn’t think chicken wire would be strong enough to protect, oh let’s say, a panther, from digging under and getting our precious chicks.

So we went with cinderblock. Big, thick, heavy-duty blocks.

Measure, dig, bury and level. The whole thing has to be level so that the chicken coop won’t be sitting all wonky and stuff.

Then you lay flat square blocks on top. As your dog stands guard against any of the said predators.

The new Coop Palace sits on top of the blocks.

This isn’t the ideal coop for us, but it’ll do for now until Scott builds the Coop Mansion.

Line it with pine shavings.

Then it’s time to get the chicks and show ‘em their new home.

They arrive in a pink limo. Coco::sniff sniff::

“Oh, that looks kinda scary being up so high!”

“Yup….mighty steep!”

It was littlest one, Frenzy Cutie-Pie that was the bravest to venture down the steps. The rest were too chicken.(har..har…har….)

Our Buddha garden statue stands guard. Those scary extra-large rodent forms don’t have a chance against the mighty Jolly Garden Buddha!

The next morning, we found THIS in the coop.

A small, hairy spider with a freakish face painted on its back that looks like it’s smirking at me. My friends on Twitter and Facebook told me it’s a Jumping Spider. I don’t like spiders. Apparently this one jumps, has green fangs and is hairy, has 8 eyes and can kill BEES

train Buddha to keep spiders out of coop, we must.

 



33 Responses to “Chicks new digs”

  1. Bev Weidner — 8/30/11 @ 1:08 pm

    Those little babies are SO CUTE. Their faces! I just died, so my ghost is finishing typing up these last few words.

    C.U.T.E.

  2. Erin — 8/30/11 @ 1:35 pm

    Too stinking cute!!

  3. sara — 8/30/11 @ 1:53 pm

    Against my better judgement, I clicked on the spider link. Bugs in the South freak me out!!

  4. jenjenk — 8/30/11 @ 3:03 pm

    ummm…does it bite??? i think i’d be scared of picking up the eggs if they do!

  5. Wow, those coops sure put my grandma’s old one to shame. I loved going out there to get eggs with them. Brought back some great memories. You are the chick whisperer! They’re so cute! (Last pictured invader excluded!)

  6. Kenna R — 8/30/11 @ 10:10 pm

    Where did you find this coop??

    • SteamyKitchen — 9/1/11 @ 9:06 am

      It was at a local feed supply company. It’s not a coop I’d recommend though, I don’t think it’s designed well!

  7. Heather Goodwin — 8/30/11 @ 11:01 pm

    I need a bigger poultry palace! Where can I get a copy of these plans??

  8. Jen — 8/30/11 @ 11:07 pm

    Jaden,
    You are so, so funny. The chick whisperer. Bwah!!
    Love the new digs. Looks pretty snazzy to me.
    That spider was scary. I hope he goes away and doesn’t come back.

  9. How adorable! I grew up in the country, but my own kids are city kids. For some reason, even though we go to the county fair each year, this is the first year I took them into the barn with the roosters, telling them, “If you’ve never thought that roosters could be beautiful, you haven’t seen THESE roosters!” My 18-year-old grabbed my cam and started taking pic after pic. :)

  10. What a fun post!The chicks are adorable and I love your photos.Makes me want some chickens too!

  11. Kim Bee — 9/1/11 @ 11:22 am

    Jaden this is such a cute and hilarious post. I cracked up about the porn names. And the pics of the little ones sleeping are so adorable. I wish I could have chickens. I need a farm. I swear I’m living someone else’s life. This is not mine. lol

  12. rose — 9/1/11 @ 4:38 pm

    they are so cute. what kind of coop you got? Is it a ready to assemble kit or built from scratch. Some of the agricultural stores sell them, but they cost around $500!

  13. My friend’s chick was murdered by a hedgehog. It had bitten the chick’s neck and he saw the hedgehog walking away from the crime scene. :s

    Hope your chicks keep safe.

  14. Sally — 9/2/11 @ 11:04 am

    I hope my son Luke doesn’t see this post–he’s begging me for a backyard chicken coop. Um,my backyard is 1/1000th the size of yours. Maybe in our next house :)

  15. Carrie Oliver — 9/2/11 @ 11:20 am

    Jaden, I can’t wait to see the multi-colored eggs. What breeds are those chickens? XO

  16. Hey there Jaden…your chicks look a tad small to be living all on their lonesome without heat. Though I suppose in Florida you have it naturally. You may want to prepare the boys for the pitfalls of animal/bird stewardship. They die. If all goes well, fabulous. If not, start with about 20 or so next time and that way you can be sure to have at least 10 healthy egg laying “girls” after several months (judging by your photos, probably four or five?). You may want to rethink the whole name thing for the sake of your boys (dare I say it again…animals/birds die…it’s just a fact of life…a good lesson to learn, nonetheless). Anyway, it has been fun to read about your adventures. Keep up the good work!-N.

  17. Missy — 9/2/11 @ 2:20 pm

    Stinking adorable!! I had chickens for a few years too.. they are pretty easy to take care of once the house is up and running! Enjoy them.. they are only small for a short period of time. But they are quite cool to watch cluck around…

  18. Always Wright — 9/2/11 @ 5:34 pm

    Congratulations on the chicks! When I was young my aunt and uncle next door to us in Cheraw, SC had a good sized chicken coop plus a large enclosed pen. We lived inside the city limits and I guess there were no restrictions about raising poultry in town. I remember we had an egg incubator next to the tool shed behind our garage. All of this brings back happy memories. I know your kids will have fun taking care of the chicks! Thanks for the pics.

  19. MsKat — 9/2/11 @ 10:38 pm

    Ohhhh they are SO DARN CUTE!!! Found myself smiling as I looked at the pics and read teh captions.

  20. Susan — 9/2/11 @ 11:56 pm

    If these are just the temporary quarters, I can’t imagine what the decked out mansion will be like! Swimming pool, movie stars?

  21. Heidy — 9/3/11 @ 8:16 am

    This was such an interesting post. Thank you! You remind me when I was a kid and talked my dad into getting my sister and I Easter chicks (in the suburbs). They lived in a box in the bathroom until they got white feathers and we took them to a friend’s farm. When I asked how they were later, they said the pigs ate them. I think it was human pigs that ate them, but I have no proof….I am still mad about that one.

  22. Connie — 9/3/11 @ 10:36 am

    I can just feel that you — and your boys, especially — are having a grand time. :D

  23. Chris — 9/4/11 @ 1:11 pm

    The new poop coop looks cool. Those chicks are so adorable.

  24. Lynette — 9/4/11 @ 1:24 pm

    Congratulations! The image of the coop brought back wonderful childhood memories of traveling with my maternal grandparents and visiting relatives in their home states of Tennessee and Mississippi who gave me the early morning chore of feeding the chickens. It was a wonderful experience. I hope you and your family will continue to enjoy them. Thanks for sharing.

  25. Renuka — 9/4/11 @ 6:43 pm

    wow, what a beautiful post. I love the photos of all the chicks, the all have such fancy feathers. The photos where they are sleeping in your hands is so precious…. it is the kind of picture that warms one’s heart.

    Congratulations on your chick venture…

  26. HiRize — 9/5/11 @ 2:21 pm

    OK, I’m amazed. (Love your blog, by the way! Just live a bit inland from you. Welcome to Central Florida!)
    Why amazed, you may ask?
    1. No one said anything about the boys playing with naked chicks.
    2. No one said anything about chickens eating bugs, including spiders.
    3. Why did someone think you needed heat for the coop when the birds have been inside in the air conditioning? It’s way hotter outside, especially if you’re not using the heat lamp any more.

  27. Love the pics of the sleeping baby chicks. Did not love the picture of the big freakish looking hairy spider. Ew, gives me the heebie jeebies. . .

  28. My dear friend Robin is now raising 4 chickens in her back yard. I know she would enjoy seeing this post. I’ll tell her about you! :-D

  29. Robin — 9/10/11 @ 3:34 pm

    I am still freaked out over that spider!! yikes!

    Anyway – Susan was right. I love your coop. We just got our first eggs this week. 2. I’m giddy! I haven’t posted about them yet. Too much real life getting in the way of my blogging. ha.

  30. Kim in MD — 9/13/11 @ 10:03 am

    Oh my gosh…you are hysterical, Jaden! Reading this post really brightened my morning! :-)

    Oh- and I clicked on the spider links…too creepy, although the the spider at first glance is kind of cute! I have garden/writing spiders big time in my garden. They are really freaky, too!

  31. April Decheine — 10/14/11 @ 9:28 am

    I just moved on to a farm and chickens are my first thing to get! We have an old shed that needs some major work but that will be a place to start with chickens. Cannot wait, yours are so cute, I am so excited!!

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