I can’t remember if I mentioned that on March 12, 2021, I bought five baby chickens. Still pretty much winter in Michigan, I also bought a small dog kennel, a heat lamp, and other necessary paraphernalia needed to care for Martha, Natasha, Wanda, Scarlet, and Owlette until it warmed up enough to put them outdoors.
It didn’t take long to figure out that chicken feed contains some form of magical growth dust because I’ve never seen anything grow that fast in my life. The photo below proves it too. ‘Adoption night’ is on the far left, where all five were bunched in the corner of the very tiny box (provided by the store). The middle one was five days later. And the far left was two weeks to the day after we brought them home.
It was then I realized that the kennel wasn’t going to work for as long as I’d hoped, which led to one of the dumbest ideas I’ve ever had.
Always budget minded, I was appalled at the price of chicken coop kits, at least as far as what I considered value for the cost. So… I thought, my daughter and I are pretty handy. We’ve tackled some ‘guy’ type jobs many times – with good results.
“We can just build a bigger one ourselves – and save a lot of money doing it too. It’s just a chicken coop. How hard can it be?” Maybe not famous last words – but they would definitely be in that ballpark.
I looked at some pictures, drew a couple of sketches, wrote a few notes … and made the first trip to Home Depot. (heavy emphasis on first)
Days one and two were kind of fun. We were building a chicken coop! And it was looking like a chicken coop! How cool was it that two women, with no kit, pattern, or really any experience with that kind of thing were building a chicken coop???!!!
The novelty began to wear off after the second trip to Home Depot, and was gone entirely by the time a fourth became necessary.
During ‘the build,’ I found myself quoting from a YouTube Channel I particularly love (Trent and Allie) … “I don’t care if it’s a ‘hair out of square.’ It’s a chicken coop, not a house.” By the time we got to the ramp, even my daughter had adopted that attitude. I am sorry I measured something wrong for the ‘roof,’ which is probably twenty hairs out of square – and is attached with zip ties. Even so, we’re not doing it over.
It still needs the chicken swing and a roost in the run. I also need to do fold-down-doors for the vent areas. And then it needs a couple of coats of paint. Maybe now that we’re three weeks away from the
headache project, we’ll get those things finished this week. But, such as it is…
Honestly? Even though it’s pretty much cobbled together, I’m pretty proud of how it turned out. Not bad for a couple of ‘girls.’ And Martha, Natasha, Wanda, Scarlet, and Owlette? They love it! 🙂