Thursday, April 4, 2013

ok, it's a girl for REAL!

Since your eyes probably work just fine, I'll now state the obvious that it's TWO girls!
Tagalongs from the feed store.  They took one look at us and knew we were theirs.  They were there, nudging eachother with their little wings, all, "Peep peep... Check out those two blondies and their tired looking mama bird.  That's our getaway!  Peep peep."

I mean, seriously.  How many times can you set foot in Golden Mill, only to step out empty handed?  We'd reached our max.  The visit today was not premeditated.  At least, the outcome wasn't premeditated.  We just happened to be there when the kiddos had some of their birthday money with them.  A stop at the dollar store to spend one of their dollars, a run to the local hardware store, and finally a stop at Golden Mill to see if they had any welded wire fence rolls, and boom.  Chicks.  IN OUR FACE.
Melt, melt went the tiny hearts.
Peep, peep said the baby chicks.
Choices?  None.
Money?  Spent. 

They told us they were ten-day-old Rhode Island Reds.  The only chicken to achieve State Bird status.  According to my research:  Cold hardy, good layers (250-300 per year!  Fingers crossed!), and illness resistant.  Only, one of them stood out.  A little blondie in a sea of barred wings.  She seemed like she just wanted a snooze in all of the commotion of her chickmates, resting amidst the huddle.  Then!?  She'd pop up and scurry around out of nowhere, as if someone offered her dessert before her dinner.  I kept an eye on her as my daughter pleaded for the life of her to bring some chicks home.

The dude at the store answered my questions... which were many despite having read 4 books now whose high regard of chickenfolk convinced my susceptible brain.

Should I be looking for a twist in the beak or legs?
-Yes, but these gals are looking really good.
Do you see a pecking order at this age?
-Not as much, it really depends on their little community as they age and how much they're handled.
When is it too soon to socialize them with the kiddos?
-Go ahead and handle them now, without stressing them, so they will become more like pets that are good with the kids.
If we take them home today, is it okay to hold a couple now and see how they are with us?
What about that one... She seems lighter than the rest.  Does that mean anything?
-Actually... (consults store owner...) She actually looks more like a sex link (it's a BREED I promise!) than a Rhode Island Red.  They're good layers!
We want to start with a variety of breeds for our first flock, including young layers and chicks.  Thinking maybe taking a couple today, adding another chick this weekend, and then 3 more that are laying when we get our coop arrangement figured out.  Is two too few?  Can you say that five times fast please?
-2's the mininum, but should be fine especially if you're adding soon.  They like a flock!

So, we picked up a little RIR.  She seemed happy in my hands, didn't act skittish... Didn't notice any major nervousness that made me reconsider placing her in our take-out box.  So we did!  One down, one to go.  I got to thinking that maybe the chance of ending up with a little sex-link instead of another red would be a good way to start the diversity.  So we headed to the other bin to see what she was made of.

She was a little more nervous than her RIR counterpart, and had a lot to say!  She peeped and peeped and peeped, and then she stopped.  She rested in my hands and I saw no reason to leave her there at the store.  We gathered up a waterer, a GINORMOUS cube of pine shavings (from beetlekill pine in Canada) and the ten pound bag of local organic feed.  We even got two dollars off because of their Chick Days promotion.  $39 dollars and two shrieking kiddos later we were on our way home.  Box of baby chicks nestled between two car seats.

I told the kiddos we should take a few days to decide on their names, since I was sure we'd end up with something like Helper Rainbow Gravity Chins or Sonic or something, if we decided immediately.  Hey, speaking of Sonic, let's stop for a hot dog and a cherry lime-aid on the way home!
While there, a little song by Luke Bryan came on.  "Shake it for me, girl, shake it for me girl!" Tulah sang as she downed her tater tots.
Country Girl is now the name of one of our chicks.  Her chick, the blondie.
After making quite sure that's what she wanted, I told Knox he could name the other chickie if he wanted to.  He went with his infinitely appropriate go-to critter name, Rosie.  Rosey?  Rosy?  Not sure yet on the spelling but I'll have him decide and get back to you.  I told him that's a good one, because his little girl is a Rhode Island Red!  What a wise old man my son is.

After we got the girls set up in their VERY chic (HA!) cardboard box home, we spent lots of time observing them and taking photos.  Prepare to be photobombed with peep-sized cuteness.

Tulah and Country Girl

Country Girl

Rosey.  Rosie?


They definitely didn't call each other before deciding what wings to wear today.

And to close, I leave you with the letter Tulah wrote her daddy:  Her plea for pleasantries during this time of uncertainty and poultry.  We know Daddy gets cranky with my bright ideas, so I thought we needed to curb his enthusiasm for negativity with a little something from the heart.  The heart of his darling daughter.
Dear Daddy
I hope you're not mad we brought chicks home!
If you feel mad just count to ten.
I love you!

He's still not said a word about them, except, "They're not gonna be my problem."
I'm sure that the first time they produce his breakfast, he'll come around.  He always does. 

1 comment:

  1. I love your new family members! Rosie (Rosey?) and Country Girl are lovely and they have fabulous names! Great Job, Campbell Kids! Tulah, the letter you wrote to your daddy was so wise. I'm sure that helped him to be calm. You are an angel. I love you all, Nina