My husband and I have been very intrigued by the homesteading lifestyle for quite some time now. We love the idea of raising our kids with the knowledge of how to live off the land and provide for themselves. We were both raised in town and have very little experience with anything farm related so it has been a learning process for the entire family. A few weeks ago a good friend was going to pick up some chicks and we asked him to bring us some as well. He brought us 10 baby Rhode Island Reds.
They were cute, loud, fuzzy and they smelled “fowl”. We immediately got busy trying to set up some sort of comfortable accommodations for our new residents. I contacted a friend who is a chicken genius to ask for a few pointers on how to care for the little cheeping critters. Well my friend and her husband jumped in the truck and drove 45 minutes to bring me a new feeder and waterer and a huge binder full of chicken wisdom. In addition to that they also brought me a pair of Cochins!
A full grown hen and rooster which they lovingly refer to as “Fat Sassy Momma” and “Mr. Gimpy” (Because he has a hitch in his get-a-long). I went from having no chickens, to having a dozen in one day and I really had no clue what do to with any of them.
Over the next few days my husband and I put together a home for our new additions and settled into a routine of feeding, watering, checking for eggs and making sure the babies were staying warm. Things were going smoothly and the neighbors weren’t complaining too much about Mr. Gimpy crowing at all times of the day. I thought that maybe I could handle being a chicken lady. And then it happened…
The friend that had purchased the baby chicks for us had an accident and fell down a flight of stairs. He was having trouble getting around due to the injuries and soreness from the fall. My husband rushed over to help out and returned home with TEN MORE CHICKS. These needed special care because while our friend had been injured, his larger hens had picked on these babies and wouldn’t let them get much food. Now I was running a chicken hospital.
It was chaotic but over the next few days we were able to put all but two of the baby chicks outside. I am happy to report that all 22 are doing fine and seem to be happy and healthy. We have discovered that dropping a grasshopper into their pen can result in 30 minutes of high spirited entertainment. The chicks play keep away and our kids gather round the coop and cheer and giggle at the feathery madness. We jumped into the deep-end of chicken farming and had to learn fast but we sure are having a fine time!
Many folks are not aware that it is actually possible to keep chickens if you live inside city limits. It is not only great to have your own source of fresh eggs, but it is a great educational experience. My kids homeschool and I highly recommend little projects like this. If you keep chickens or are considering getting a few, I would like to recommend this website to you. They have fantastic hen houses at very good prices and they are cute too! Shipping on all orders are free and you can get a great discount by using coupon code:TSCSHOPS. Check them out!