Construction Complete and Moving Day!

June 10, 2010

It’s been a whirlwind ten days, and apologies for not posting sooner, but life has been consumed by all things chicken! Silly girls.

Coop and run construction are complete. Painting and final touches as well. All was finally right in the chicken world yesterday morning, and it was finally moving day. As any of you who have done construction projects know, the axiom “double the time and cost” of your original estimates holds true. We expected the project to be done sooner, but in reality, considering Mr. CV’s current work schedule, we should have known that was pie-in-the-sky. As for costs, we weren’t too far off; definitely not double the original estimate, but closer to 30%. Still, a 60% savings over the coop kits that we found online. This of course is a Very Good Thing.

Moving day was fun. Mr. CV had left early for work, so it was up to me to move the girls from the garage to their new home. I started with Ginger, as she’s usually the easiest to catch. She immediately quieted down when we walked into the sunlight. Into the coop she went, and stood completely still as her head swiveled around to check things out. Not wanting to leave her alone for too long, I went back and gathered up Joanie. Joanie is a squawker, and the moment I picked her up she began to loudly protest, but again, the moment we walked into the bright sunlight she calmed down, immediately relaxing in my hands. Reunited with her sister the two reds went poking around.

Off for Hazel, who surprisingly came without a fuss, but the moment I added her to the coop all three girls seemed to panic at something, and hid, together, in one of the nesting boxes. Nothing I could do would coax them out, so off I went for Truffle.

Alone in the brooder box, Truffle was not a happy camper when I returned. Chirping loudly, she was looking for the others, unhappy that she had been left alone. The wiliest (and largest) of the birds, it took me a moment to catch her, but she settled quickly. Out to the coop we walked, only to find the other three still huddled, frightened, in a single nesting box. But, the moment I placed Truffle inside, the three of them came out and gathered around her, happy that Mom was there to protect them. Happy Days for all.

Complete with run. Sorry for the lack of run construction photos, but there was definitely a sense of urgency to get this completed!


 

Initially, I wasn't happy with the color, but I like it now. :)Initially, I wasn’t happy with the color, but I like it now. :)


 

Another view


 

We’re finally home!


 

Little Ginger proved once again that you can be the smallest in the bunch, but still be very brave. She was not only the first of the girls to look outside, but the first to actually venture out. Although, it was a little more tumbling than venturing, as she got pushed through the door when Hazel panicked. Speaking of Hazel…


 

Notice something a little different here? Hazel, to the right, has developed some very suspicious feathers, along with the fact that her comb is much redder than the other girls. That being said, it’s time for a little anatomy lesson. Everything that exits a chicken passes through a single opening, known as a vent. Examining the vent, in order to sex a chicken, the female’s should be smooth, pink and flat on the inside. The male’s should have a small pimple-sized bump. I have examined all four chicks, and all four have identical looking vents, but, I am seeing a small pimple on all of them. The odds would be astronomical for me to have managed to get four roosters, so obviously I don’t know what I’m looking at. Do you think, with all the other outrageous things you can find on the Internet, that I could find a single photo for comparison purposes? Of course not. *head desk* Daughter #2 thinks that maybe Hazel/Henry is having a sexual identity crisis, and is wondering at the possibility of cock-a-doodle-doo being replaced with vag-i-doodle-doo.


 

Enjoying the great outdoors for the first time. See those silly tail feathers of Hazel’s?


 

In addition to building the coop, as these things tend to happen, another project was happening at the same time. An area of the lawn, that had been trampled over the years by our dearly departed dogs, needed to be replaced. So…

…out it came…


 


…decomposed granite was delivered…


 

…pathway complete!!


 

Now for my Academy Awards speech. There are so many people who have had a hand in this project, whose help we couldn’t have done without. Both of Mr. CV’s brothers, our nephew, Mr. CV’s BFF, our two daughters, Daughter #1’s BF, and our next door neighbor. Hopefully, I haven’t left anyone out. Oh, yeah…Mr. CV. I should probably say something about him. :)

Mr. CV has done nothing but support me on this project from Day One. Even with his limited time, and extremely stressful situations at work, he was anxious to do this. Three precious weekends and evenings were filled with measuring, sawing, leveling, hammering and multiple trips to Home Depot and Lowe’s, and he never complained once (at least not within earshot), and for that I can not thank him enough. I couldn’t ask for a better mate. <3

Tomorrow: Danger lurks!

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8 Responses to “Construction Complete and Moving Day!”

  1. Neuge Says:

    Wow that is a thing of beauty…great job

  2. Chi Says:

    Lovely! Can’t wait to see the birds and the CV’s backyard! I love daughter #2’s suggestion to Hazel’s identity crisis!

  3. Nancy Canada Says:

    Can’t wait to see in person you guys!!! Pictures are great, nice work.

  4. Angela Kockler Says:

    Hi Toni,

    This is Nick’s wife, friends of Jen’s. How are you? So, I’m writing to you to ask how you chose the design for your coop. Jen mentioned you had this blog, so I checked it out and I’m quite impressed with what you’ve done! We are going to build a coop, and I’m trying to figure out if we buy a coop, just buy a design, or just do everything ourselves. Do you have any recommendations? We’d like to not spend a lot of money, but we are also not carpenters, either. We can probably handle simple design and construction… Would love your feedback!

    Cheers,
    Angela

    • Toni Says:

      Angela…my apologies for not replying sooner. I never got notification that you posted. :(

      We scoured the internet for coop plans, but never found one to our exact liking. We did find one that was fairly close, so the plans were drawn and modified from it. As long as you can measure accurately and have the right tools to make straight and miter cuts, you can do this!

      Again…apologies!!! Oh, and congratulations. :D


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