Sunday, March 27, 2011

The Cottage Hens



 ( Lacy Lou and Hazel )

It's time to check in on the Cottage Hens! The girls have been waiting patiently for their annual spring cleaning and even though it wasn't the warmest day (28 ) the sun was out so I bundled up and made it happen... I even gussied up the inside of the Hen House but you'll have read to the end to see it!

Lets see if I can make a post about cleaning the Poulet' Chalet'  informative, inspiring and beautiful!


I thought we'd take a look around the Hen House ( cobwebs and all ) so those of you who are thinking about a small flock of your own can see how ours looks and functions. I've mentioned in a previous post that our Hen House is built from salvaged materials including the large window on the front. It's not operable but it allows a steady dose of sun to stream in during the long winter months keeping them nice and snug inside.




Picture Lady Banks yellow roses growing on a trellis here.





My other half built the nesting boxes on the back for easy access to collecting eggs




 and food storage which is separated from the nesting area by a small dividing wall.


 The access door to the run and the door to the coop is just beyond the nesting boxes.


The door is also a " foundling" that my hubby revived with a lot of  sanding and some new wire for the openings between the framed areas.

( before cleaning )

The door to the coop is on the inside of the run. This makes it easy to feed, clean and visit with the girls because they are safe inside. Oh, I would love to let them roam free we but we have too many loose dogs and wild turkeys in the neighborhood that could be a danger. I didn't take a photo of the floor of the coop after I cleaned it out, but it has sheet of linoleum stapled to it. This has worked well both for just a quick sweep out or a hose down which I do once a year usually during summer when I can leave the door open all day and into the early evening to dry out. 






We placed vents on either side of the top and back of the coop. The decorative  iron door strap is from Antique Restoration Hardware. The paint is Behr Barn Red opaque stain. Our coop is just right for 8-10 birds ( we currently have 3 ) with the attached run measuring out at 10 x 15 feet. We've got our spring chicks on order... With ten new babies coming soon we are planning an extension for the run and possibly a smaller " cottage " near by. 



I love the smell of fresh shavings! To me it's sort of the same kind of wonderful as fresh cut grass or a horse barn. I sweep the old shavings into the run and rake them over the damp ground so they can compost for a while.  I'll go back in later in the season to shovel off the top layer of the run adding it to my garden for a boost! 



While I cleaned the girls told me they wanted to do a little decorating too! They thought it would be nice to hang a family photo or two and some pictures of the garden. I went rummaging in my stash to see what I could come up with...



Low and behold, I had saved an old calendar just for a day like this! I tore out the pages the girls liked and tacked them up on the inside with upholstery tacks. We were having so much fun that I decided to use up some wall paper samples for back grounds behind some other favored pictures too.



Family Portraits


Garden Photos 


Outside looking in


Chestnut says she likes it! 
What ever you're spring cleaning I hope you're inspired to add your special touches along the way! 

You'll just feel better, I promise! 



Cluck... Cluck.. Cluck...
I'm sharing this post with Our Little Coop's~ Coop Hop
and the Chicken Chick's Clever Chic Hop! 





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