Monday, July 28, 2014

An egg-citing weekend!






Egg-citement abounded here this weekend! We have eggs!

We don't know for sure which one of our hens is laying, but we think it's Betty, the Barred Plymouth Rock. She has been getting bigger and fluffier almost by the day lately. Her comb has gotten bigger and darker red, and she was going into the coop for periods of time in late morning. On Thursday, I noticed that the straw in the nest box had been piled exactly like, well, a nest. There was a small hole right in the center and I could see that she'd been roosting there. They're almost five months old, so we knew it was possible for them to start laying soon. We all watched carefully.

On Saturday morning, I went to the grocery store alone. I bought a dozen eggs, thinking about how nice it will be not to have to buy so many eggs...eventually (I try to buy good-quality eggs, which aren't cheap). When I walked in the door at home, I was greeted by three beaming Bears, who said "We have exciting news!" They told me to go out back and look in the nest box. Inside was one small brown egg, the one in the photos here. An egg! One perfect, sweet little egg.

The LB is probably the most egg-cited (sorry). He loves the chickens and I've seen a whole new side of him since we've had them. He is a quiet kid who loves computers. He thinks a lot and concentrates hard on his tasks. He is very smart and learns quickly, but sometimes I worry that he doesn't have enough fun. The chickens have brought out a different LB. He's very interested in caring for them and has shown lots of responsibility. I like seeing him interact with animals and nurturing them. I think it has been really good for him. He was beside himself with joy over that first egg and it made me so happy! He loved being photographed with the egg too, especially after I said that I think this makes him a grandfather.

I thought for sure that it would be a long time before we saw another egg but there was another on Sunday morning and another today too. My friend Claire came for lunch today with her three girls; the older two are the same ages as my two. I had the LB take the girls out to see the chickens and told him he could open the nest box for an egg-check (I've been limiting them to just a few checks each day so as not to disturb the hens). There was an egg inside on his check! Our friends really enjoyed that. I was glad they had a chance to see it. He was so proud of himself. I think he considers himself a farmer now. I've got three small brown eggs in a plastic bowl in my fridge, fresh from the hen! Fresh eggs, right here in my own backyard! I'm feeling a little farm-ish myself.

52 comments:

  1. How exciting, I remember as a child collecting the eggs at my grandparents smallholding, I loved finding eggs :) When we had some chickens it was lovely just walking down the garden to collect fresh eggs to eat x Well done chooks

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  2. And once you'll have tasted those eggs, you'll never want to buy eggs anymore... Not even the most expensive ones in the supermarket..
    A little tip : not only give your hens the typical mix of corn/wheat etc, but also give them all the leftovers from your table... The more variety in food they get, the better their eggs taste !

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  3. Yay!!! Now that is exciting! Well done chickens, and well done your family for looking after them so well!
    I hope you enjoy them!
    Gill xx

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  4. How exciting, well done all of you for looking after them. Now the big question, what are you going to do with them?

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  5. oh so exciting! we were just the same when our girls started laying. often for the first few weeks you get double yolks, such a treat!

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  6. Brilliant!! It's so great when they start to lay. You'll always be pleased when you see those eggs. And boy do they taste great.
    Leanne xx

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  7. Oh, chickens and eggs, something I have always wanted to have around here, but we never did, so I was always reduced to buying eggs at the grocery or being lucky to see someone selling fresh eggs along the way. As an adult it would be delightful to discover eggs in the nest, but one can only imagine how thrilling it would be for a child. The possibilities would be endless, eggs for breakfast, cakes, cookies and let's not forget those deviled eggs, yum, yum.
    (((HUGS))) Susanne :)

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  8. How fantastic, I can imagine how excited you all are. Well done that hen! And how lovely that your son has been so good with them. My biggest boy regularly asks for chickens. Maybe one day... CJ xx

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  9. How fabulous, Jennifer. Well done to you and your hens! :o)

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  10. How awesome that is! I would love to have my own chickies! Eggs are SO expensive. The good ones, I know! Congrats! xoxo Jen

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  11. Go Betty! That is so exciting for your family, love urban agriculture in action!

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  12. Oh yay! My cousin has hens, and when his ladies (as he calls them) started laying, the whole family went round for an egg party, he was proud as punch! x

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  13. I'm excited, too, not only for your eggs but for the learning experience it's giving your children.

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  14. Amazing! I can't believe that the egg looks so clean and perfect. Your hens look so proud of themselves too :)

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  15. My kids would love the eggs too :) I am so jealous that you have fresh eggs now!

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  16. This is great news! Very egg-citing! I must say I would definitely feel farm-ish too if I had fresh eggs in my backyard. ;)

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  17. Very egg-citing.....indeed!
    Cheers!
    Linda :o)

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  18. I was even virtually excited...when I saw your first photo, I said to myself, "Yay, an egg!" lol How awesome is it have fresh eggs from your own hens, right in your backyard?!

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  19. Awww ..... congratulations to your whole family on your new eggsperience!! (poor I know). Your son looks awfully proud, and should be if he's caring for these pretty hens as well as you say. Just one more and you can all sit down to breakfast! Enjoy :) Wendy x

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  20. I'm excited too! Great fun and a priceless learning experience for your children. They must be thrilled by it all. Happy egg-fest...

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  21. How exciting! It sounds like Betty is going to be blessing you with eggs on a regular basis!

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  22. How EXCITING is this pal!!! There is nothing better than fresh eggs! What a blessing for your family to have this experience!!! Wishing you a wonderful week friend! Nicole xoxo

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  23. Brilliant. There's nothing like having your own eggs.

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  24. I loved this happy and egg-citing story, Jennifer :) I can just imagine the thrill of discovering an egg in the straw, the best kind of egg hunt!
    Helen xox

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  25. Your own fresh eggs what a lovely surprise for you! So are you going to bake a cake with them, or fry them up for breakfast?

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  26. How fantastic! Fresh eggs are the best. So sweet that your children adore the chickens so much too.
    Marianne x

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  27. Awe that's brilliant news! I remember as a child when visiting my aunt the excitement of finding an egg in the nest, it was like finding treasure!
    It's great that it gives your little boy so much pleasure too!
    V x

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  28. That's fabulous news. I bet it won't be long until you're collecting two eggs each day. My friend's family kept chickens when I was a child and I loved going to her house so that I could collect the eggs, I've hankered after keeping hens ever since.

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  29. Oh Jennifer that's brilliant! We had a few chickens once and one of them - Ma - looked just like Betty but I think she was a Maran. Her eggs had the most golden yolks I've ever seen and tasted divine. Here's to lots more! Jane x

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  30. This post made me smile, Jennifer! Such a happy, memorable moment, that first ever egg. Your Bears will remember that day for the rest of their lives. My two older boys, now in their early thirties, can tell you the exact details of the day they went to our coop and found their first egg. :-)

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  31. Oh my, that is exciting. It must be so nice to eat lovely fresh eggs from your own chooks.

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  32. Oh wow, you'll have fresh eggs now every day. Perfect for poaching! It is lovely to read about LB and how the hens have opened a new world for him. Cx

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  33. Guauuuu que lindo huevo!!!!! y de color, son los más caros. Que alegria para tu niño, pronto tendrá que ir con una canastita a recoger los huevos de sus gallinas ponedoras. Me recuerda a mi niñez cuando acompañaba a mi abuela al galpón de las gallinas, ella llevaba una canasta para colocar gran cantidad de huevos, que alegria era eso!!! Un saludo.

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  34. Oh my goodness! I've been waiting for this day from the first arrival of your pets! It IS egg-citing!
    Reminds me of the days at grandma's chicken coop - holding new eggs still warm from the hen's body.
    Beautiful photos!

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  35. Wow! That's brilliant! Fresh eggs and great fun :) Are you collecting egg recipes for when you have a glut?!

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  37. Fantastic news Jennifer no wonder that you are all so egg cited I would be too in fact I am, I have a huge grin on my face, I think we all love your hens we have been right there with them from the start, it;s lovely that LB is so involved and happy. :)

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  38. That's brilliant Jennifer. So exciting! Fresh eggs from your backyard have got to be the best kind ... Bee xx

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  39. How fun!!!! It is a blessing your little bears have had this experience from little fizzy chicks to egg laying hens. Minus the departure of hen number 3, it has been a beautiful thing to experience. Love that LB is very gentle and wonderful with the hens, some boys are just more serious then others. I have one of each, Little Buddy I feel will be quite a character...but that remains to be seen at this time.
    Hugs,
    Meredith

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  40. Hi Jennifer,

    Exciting news indeed! how wonderful that you have fresh eggs from your sweet chickens.
    It is a thrill going to fetch the eggs - remember my days growing up when we always had chickens.
    Love the photos of your sweet photos - your boy is lovely.
    enjoy the week
    hugs
    Carolyn

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  41. How lovely!!!! I remember how much my kids use to love collecting eggs when they were little!!!! There is just something wonderful about using your own eggs, veggies and fruit!!! The joy on your LB face is wonderful!!! Have a happy week!!!
    Love
    AMarie xxx

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  42. This is so wonderful for the little bears to experience - and Mum; I remember my excitement when my little bantams started to lay and that was just a few years ago, and I was already a granny:) !!! It's been great following the progression of this story Jennifer, thank you! xoJoy

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  43. Brilliant. I remember my own son being exactly the same. It is a memory you will all never forget x

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  44. I have never had the pleasure of collecting eggs but it is something I would so love to do. My daughter's in laws have chickens perhaps I should ask .I love your previous post .Your sons dedication to his guitar practice is admirable. It's wonderful when you do not have to pester children to do stuff .I too am very lucky as both my children loved doing homework I never once had force them to do stuff.
    Jennifer, as ever stunning photography

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  45. How exciting to have fresh eggs in your backyard!

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  46. OHHH MYYY GOOODNESS! I am so happy for you and the bears! I remember my joy when my girls began laying. I did a humorous post about it quoting that one egg cost us $1,000. LOL! Good job, Betty!!
    ((hugs)), Teresa :-)

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  47. Yes! Well done little chicken laying your first egg. Awww, you must be so happy Jennifer, I think it's very exciting. I would love to have chickens. We have fresh eggs from our neighbour and you can taste the difference for sure. :)

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  48. Wow! there's nothing like that first egg from your own chickens, Jennifer. Once they start they will lay just about every day until the days shorten. I found they laid heavily for the first two years and as they got older, they laid fewer but bigger eggs. The taste was always wonderful.

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  49. This is so exciting and I am genuinely happy for you! I can just imagine the pleasure this brought you all. Wow, cooking with eggs laid that morning, amazing. X

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