The chickens are up with the sun! Or, actually, way before the sun. Chickens are early risers. They start crowing the day in around, oh, 4 AM. They crow till I let them out of the chicken house, then they crow some more. And some more after that. What is up with all that crowing? But I like it. Nothing like a rooster crowing to make you feel like you live on a farm.
I live on a farm. I like that, too.
But before I let the chickens out, I stop on the way to feed the goats, let them out into their goat yard, and release Coco from her all-night confinement on guard duty with Clover and the babies. Coco’s always eager to see me. I think Clover tells her scary stories at night or something.
Or just simply spending the night with Clover is scary.
Coco bursts with energy when she comes out of the goat pen, and she loves to get the chickens up with me! She’ll return to the goat yard later, but for now, she has to get up chickens and eat her own breakfast while Clover and the babies eat theirs.
The chickens love to get up. I say, “Good morning, chickens!” and lift the door. They charge out of the chicken house, crowing and cooing and generally making a big ruckus.
The ducks hang back, afraid to get involved in this chicken ruckus. They wait till all the chickens are out then they will gingerly peek their heads out and decide if it’s safe to emerge.
They tumble off the walkway from the house to the yard, working to avoid tangling with that scary rooster, completely graceless.
I love my ducks.
While Coco pants at the fence, watching the chickens and ducks come out, I go inside….
….to see what’s new. There’s usually something waiting for me on the floor.
And in the nesting boxes. At least somebody’s behaving and laying in the right place.
I gather up eggs and go back to the chickens, who are waiting, waiting, waiting, hoping I have brought them a treat.
I bring them cracked corn, or leftovers from the kitchen, and sometimes cracked eggshells. Eating eggshells helps them make strong shells on the eggs they lay. I pile up eggshells as I use eggs, then when I have a good batch, I bake them in the oven to dry them out. (You don’t want the chickens to get a taste of raw egg. It might tempt them to eat their own eggs!) I crumble them up after they’re dried out.
I toss them on the ground of the chicken yard and they fall upon it like ravening wolves. Okay, ravening chickens.
I put some in their feed box, too. Don’t you just love big fluffy chicken butts?
Coco loves big fluffy chicken butts.
Sorry, Coco, they are not your breakfast!
So I feed Coco her real breakfast and I take my eggs inside. I’ve been saving egg cartons for months, waiting for the day that I would have eggs. Think I have enough egg cartons?
In my defense, egg cartons will wear out and I’ll need new ones and I won’t be buying eggs, so it seemed like a good idea to store up lots of cartons. Plus, when I have too many eggs, I will be giving away cartonfuls to Georgia. So I need extra. I’m not obsessive and compulsive, I’m not!
I love my pretty cartons of colorful eggs.
I could stare at them all day, but that would be weird. Like, obsessive and compulsive.
But aren’t my eggs pretty? I made eggs!!!!! (Well, the chickens helped…..)