Friday, September 7, 2012

Chicks Are Here!

It's been over a month since I wrote in this blog.  The month of August was so busy and it just flew!

Lots of update around the garden, but the biggest news has to be our new chicks.  The chicks were ordered in August from, a company in Texas, scheduled for delivery in September.  Well, I was notified shortly after placing my order that our chicks will be shipped on September 5th, and we can expect them to arrive at our local post office for pick up within a day or two.

I was doing my final supply shopping for the coop (thermometer and pine shavings for the floor) at Wal-mart at 7 in the morning when my cell phone rang and it was the post office.  I didn't even know that there were people working at the post office at 7 in the morning, but apparently, that's when the stuff start come in the back of the building.  I was instructed to come to the 'dock' in the back of the building and press the service button to get help.  I drove right on over after paying for my stuff.

And this is what I picked up at the post office.  The box is clearly marked with "Live Baby Chicks" on a red sticker, and as if it wasn't enough, the box is chirping. :D  Special delivery, indeed!

I got the special gel food ready for the chicks and the lamp turned on inside the coop where I had set up a brooder zone and took the box out to the coop and carefully removed the outer lid.  This is what the inside the box looked like -- padded with wood shredding and another box inside. ^^

I put the whole box inside the brooder and opened the inside box to see the five chicks huddling in the corner.  CUTE!!!!!

I carefully scooped them up and out of the box one by one and gently put them onto the brooder floor.  They  just ran out of my hands to check out the place.  Amazing how much energy these chicks have after a trip in a box!  Much to my delight, they came right up to my hand and pecked on my rings when I put my hand in the brooder.  I was expecting them to huddle in the corner as far away from me as possible and shiver in fear.  Was I wrong!

Close-up of the chicks.  We got one each of Barred Plymouth Rock, Buff Orpington, Black Australorp, Golden Comet, and Easter Egger (Ameraucana).  A variety pack! :D  That was the nice thing about  Their minimum order is 3 chicks (during warm shipping months), and you can mix and match from a wide variety of chicken breeds.

And this is the chicks' home tweet home. ^^  We still have inside door latches to put, more hardware clothes to put at the top where the roof meets the side walls, but it's ready for the chicks.  The brooder area is set up inside the coop.  My daughter decided on the classic American barn color scheme of barn red and white for our coop/run.  The structure is located just past our square foot garden boxes in the backyard.

The morning glory is going crazy on our fence.  I had planted 5 to 7 seeds (I don't remember for sure...) in one small spot, so now the whole thing is densely covering a section of our fence.  Every morning, we see tons of blooms in lavender and magenta.  I don't know what happened to the "Heavenly Blue" I planted or the Moonflower seeds also.  They're there, but no blooms yet.

The broccoli plant in the Summer Veggies box is 3 feet tall and mostly leaves.  I saw this sad excuse of a 'head' the other day.  It's not quite what I expected, but tasted good. ^^;

Also strange is my "Black Krim" tomato.  They taste wonderful with a definite heirloom flavor, but they don't really turn 'black' as the seed catalogs showed in pictures.  The flavor, though, is to die for.

The Swiss Chard (Neon Lights) in the Spring Veggies box is still producing remarkably well.  I have greens to add to my lunch every day from a single square of these guys.  They are, by far, my favorite from the garden.  I also love the eggplant!

The Kamome Pink flowering kale I've been growing from seeds.  The center is looking really dense and the whole 'head' measures 12 inches already.  I'm looking forward to the color change as the weather gets cooler/cold.

Well, this is it for the giant update!  I'll write more about the chicks and my Winter Veggies box (where crops of corn used to grow) in the next update. 

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