Saturday, July 9, 2011

My Poultry Palace

I woke early this morning before the earth had even entirely shed it's sleep, the ground still covered in dew and a calming hush lingering in the air. After coffee, bill paying (which seems to suck less if I'm not yet fully awake), and the obligatory feeding of animals four-legged and two, my parents arrived.
This morning held great hope. Today we were coop building.

This coop of ours is a little miracle of economics. One of the reasons it's taken us so long to complete is because nearly every last piece of it has been repurposed, reused, recycled or free. So far the only things we've had to purchase are nails, two storm windows and a door. When you are re-using lumber, checking it for and pulling out old nails is a time-consuming, but VERY important part of the process. So is making sure those same rusted bits of steel don't get forever lost in the lawn, where the undoubtedly be rediscovered by an unsuspecting pet or person with the bottom of a foot.

After several hours of searching through and sorting out a pile of random 2 x 4s and pieces of OSB of varying sizes, several gallons of sweat, a brief break to run to the library and meeting some new locals by stopping to help rescue a neighbor's elderly retriever from wandering in the middle of the street, we've actually managed to make progress. I finally have something to report, folks. The coop has a roof. There aren't shingles just yet, but there are eaves and boards that block most of the view of the sky (we also cut out the ridge vent today).

It's brilliant and beautiful and I was both grateful and awed as I watched my dad, who I am pretty sure is now officially 60, scale the ladder to lay the sheeting and figure out the pitch of the roof in his head. I feel blessed to have a mom who finally learned to use a circular saw to help me, a daughter who hauled the tree limbs we trimmed with the tractor to the burn pile and a husband who did everything from measuring to hammering, not to mention who has exhibited the most incredible patience during every let step of this process.

My dad is not the type who does things at all half-assert, so this coop is damn near indestructible as well as being pretty and functional. We've started calling it the "poultry palace". I'll post pictures for you later this evening to enjoy, but for now I'm enjoying my family and they're enjoying the pool before it closes. Hope you are enjoying your families as well. If they're half as special as mine, make sure you make time to do it.


  1. I'm so excited for you, Heather! What a labor of love from the whole family! Those chickens won't know what to do with themselves in such beautiful digs!!!! :o) Teresa

  2. I was joking yesterday with my dad that I needed to start collecting things to make a chandelier for them, which, believe it or not, some people actually have in their chicken coops. (These are people who ENJOY cleaning, I assume.)