Saturday, March 26, 2011

They're HERE!!

I am not sure that much more could be cuter then these little beings...okay, except perhaps my own adorable spawn...  Yes, your eyes do not deceive you, there are 6 little peeping balls of fuzz occupying a little corner of our dining room in their toasty warm brooder box.  My friend talked me into taking 6 in case any of them don't make it.  We have already named 4 of them, Music Man has not weighed in with his suggestions yet (though Betty and Wilma were bandied about, which I thought was cute).  So far, Maestro chose Victoria for his Americauna, Little Red chose Rose for his Anacona, I have chosen Tulip for my Red Star Sex Link and Magnolia for my Egyptian Fayoumis...Music Man will need to name another Red Star and Fayoumis himself. 

When I went to my friend's home yesterday, there were 25 little peeping loud mouths, it was quite a ruckus in there.  I had a cup of tea with her and picked her brain for lots of little chicken name the three most important things you think are necessary to know when building a coop, how soon can we start giving them organic table scraps, how do we keep them around if we let them free range without fencing, how big should their nesting boxes be?  The list went on and on. Now, I've helped others with their chickens, but never from mearly 2 days old and though I've read lots, it's really great to have a friend that's been down this road to help mentor me.  She's a wonderful friend indeed in so many ways, we share a lot of the same interests, and she's knows A LOT about so many things I want to learn. And, she's incredibly patient with all my questions and shares her knowledge without reservation...a true friend indeed.

I was driving home with them peeping in a box in the back of the van and it was a little surreal to me.  I have started the dream, and it felt like it to me.  I have gardened, a very valuable and fulfilling skill, but I've always wanted to be able to have chickens for eggs and basically farmyard entertainment.  Watching chickens is better then any show on TV, I guarantee it.  When I finally transferred them to their brooder box and watched them toddle in curiosity checking out every nook and cranny, well, it was a heady feeling for me. 

I made sure they all drank and knew where the food was (Rose dug right in and I think is going to be the boss of the girls, she's already making sure they mind their place).  Then, I lost track of time as I kneeled by the box, watching them and learning their personalities.  The fayoumis are skittish and more nervous.  Rose will come right over to your hand when you put it down in the box, she's wanting to know what the action is all about, Victoria is also interested, but will watch from a distance.  The Red Stars will move away, but not fast as lightening like the Fayoumis. 

I had to tear myself away to pick the boys up at school.  The very first thing out of their mouths was not the customary, "Hi Mommy!",  it was "are the chickens at home??".  The boys have never had a pet and Maestro is still saying to me "thank you for getting the chickens"  and "I can't believe you actually got chickens for us". He is particularly fascinated by them and has not left the box much at all.  In fact, this is pretty much the way they've sat since they got up this morning. 

You see that they have books in their hands?  They have both started journals about the chickens.  Maestro has already started a "fascinating facts" section which contains things like chickens bathe in dirt to keep parasites off them, that the color of their legs indicates what color their eggs will be, and baby chicks drink a lot of water when they first come home.  Little Red copies most of what Maestro does these days and so he's putting those things in his journal as well.  Maestro is really amazed by them, has even started pretending he's got a learning talk show and is using one of my chicken books to "teach" his audience all about chicken facts.  I never knew they would take the arrival of chicks and run with it so well.  This is one wonderful homeschooling experience for them.  They are learning so much about chickens just in the course of their lives and that's the farm kids I want to have. 

Our first lesson yesterday was teaching the boys how to properly pick up and put back down the chicks without hurting them.  Maestro is more confident at it then Little Red, but as he's considerably taller, it's easier for him to reach down into the box. 

But, once he's holding her, he's okay with that!  He's really loving his little Rose so far.

I woke up several times during the night to check on the babies.  Their brooder should be about 90 degrees and I wanted to make sure that as the temp in the house dropped at night, their brooder wouldn't cool off too much as well.  They were huddled in a ball, snug and sound asleep.  I watched them with amazement, and like Maestro, sometimes can't believe they are really here.

Wishing you some soft peeps peace of your own, ~Peacemom


Ruta said...

How exciting!!!
I spent a good hour this morning drinking tea and watching my girls. I must say watching chickens go about their day is one of the most relaxing things for me.
As you said - better than tv any day!

Dog Trot Farm said...

How exciting! Love the photos of your boy's holding their chicks, and what very proper names they came up with! Having baby chicks it quite like having a newborn baby in the house, you just can't take your eyes of them and find yourself up in the middle of the night maing sure everything is okay!

Jennifer and Steve said...

Love it! So exciting for all of you. :) Feeling happy seeing those little balls of fluff.