Spring chickens

So once we moved out of town and had some space around us, I thought it’s probably time to embrace the lifestyle. And by embrace the life style, I mean ease into it in the suburban refugee sense, which is often a pretty different thing than what the nice folks who’ve been living out here all along and (I suspect) are watching me with mild amusement are doing.

One too many readings of Sunset’s One-Block Feast  and suddenly a vegetable garden isn’t going to get the job done. Now I’m having bright ideas about livestock.  Common sense briefly took hold and I managed to talk The Fixer Guy into chickens, with the thought that we might move up to larger animals eventually. And by eventually , I mean never.  Ease in to it, I always say. I mean really, with two little kids, two full time jobs and a house that needs renovated? Cattle, are you serious?

Cue the research phase of the project. If there’s one thing I love, it’s researching these schemes of mine.  Really, it’s an excuse to buy books and read, which are probably my all time favorite time sinks. It kept me out of my mom’s hair for a number of years, and now it’s the number one cause of child neglect at my house, followed by soap making and occasionally knitting.

A couple of hours of Internet research led me here, where Karen posted pictures of here beautiful chicken house. Looks beautiful, has plenty of storage space, secure against vermin, which is important since we have coyotes occasionally. And also Jack Russells. And one giant killing machine of a cat.

Karen at theartofdoingstuff.com directed her readers here for her inspiration.  Plans for Heather Bullard’s chicken house are available for purchase  thru her blog, but because The Fixer Guy is also an AutoCAD junkie, he decided to draw up his own plans and thinks he can do better on material pricing as well.  And because my background in commercial food processing convinced me long ago that sanitary design has a place in home improvement projects (especially useful to indifferent housekeepers like me), there will be some modifications to the interior for easier cleaning.  We’re also gearing up for a bathroom remodel, so hopefully we won’t end up with nesting boxes in the can and a bathtub next to the roost.  Naturally, I will post updates as the projects progress.

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