Saturday, August 14, 2010

Knights in Shining Toolbelts

A few posts back, I hinted that I might be participating in a little civil disobedience. Well today my friends, I am one step closer to doing just that. Last weekend was crazy. I had my parents, my in laws, my brother and 17 riled up kids to feed and entertain for my daughter's birthday. But in between the hullabaloo,  the menfolk managed to slip away to the hardware store and had just enough time to build me a chicken coop. Oh sweet farm-y bliss!

It's really perfect. It's an A-frame design with two roosts/nesting boxes. It's just short enough not to be seen over the fence but tall enough for me to get in and do what I need to do. They even built a little door and ramp so I can let the girls out to scratch around in the garden. Buh-bye crickets! The coops is small but since technically I'm not even allowed to have hens, so I figured a flock of four is more than enough.

I'm not ready to bring the ladies home quite yet. I need to make a trip to the feed store for waterers, wood shavings and organic feed. It's on my to-do list today. And since I only have one hen (Minnie had an unfortunate incident with a dog...may she rest in peace) but would like to have four, I'm also trying to decide whether I want to chance getting birds from unknown source (aka Craigslist) and risking diseased/aged/parasitic birds.There is also the option of ordering pullets from a hatchery but then I'd have to wait a bit for eggs. I want omelets now!

I'm also beginning to get a bit scared. Well, maybe scared is the wrong word. Nervous. I just don't want anyone to find out about my contraband birds. I've always been one to follow the straight and narrow. I'm a good girl. A rule follower. And I feel so deviant! I'm not allowed to have chickens but I'm going to anyway. A rebel, I know. You should have seen me when we rigged up the clothesline which we are also not supposed to have. I was a nervous wreck. I was just waiting for the HOA police to pound down the door and demand that I remove my underwear from the line immediately or risk an exorbitant fine. That never happened of course but I still watch over my shoulder when I hang my clothes.

The way I figure it, the only way we could be found out is to be turned in by a neighbor. I've already spoken with one neighbor, the house on the other side of us is an abandoned foreclosure and the two houses behind us are rarely home and have stinky barking dogs giving them little authority to complain of the occasional boisterous squawk. I think we're good. If problems arise maybe I can bribe them with fresh eggs and produce. Worth a shot don't you think?


  1. Oh I hope it goes well for you!
    I can't believe that you can't even have your own clothesline! Your council must be backwards. I'm lucky to live in an area that encourages being green.

  2. Here's my motto: It's easier to ask for forgiveness, than to get permission. Town councils/HOAs need to spend their energy on bigger issues, and yes, a dog is louder and stinkier than 4 hens...AND they're just pets, rather than providers of food. And you have a RIGHT to secure a food source for your family. Go girl!!

  3. Forwarding this post to a friend who wants chickens in her backyard! :) Anything you'd change, Stephanie? How much room do you have for them to roam? How's it all working out?! Thanks!