Psalms from the Hive

by Jeannie Saum

The coop is big enough

For Uncle Mike and his 20 girlfriends

Instead of sleeping on our couch

He’ll have a roost instead!

Clover, Bee, and Revery

Reverie (revery) –(n.) state of dreamy meditation or fanciful musing; a fantastic, visionary, or impractical idea

 

Steve’s brother, Mike, (Uncle Mike to our kids and grandkids) has been spending quite a bit of time at our house since he, too, decided to retire from the Post Office  a few months ago.  He’s been here, sleeping on the couch and sharing the living room with our 20 chicks.  And he’s been helping with the coop building, when he isn’t enticing my husband away from these projects to fish or mushroom hunt and play!  So the joke around here, as the coop has gone up, is that it is big enough to be Uncle Mike’s room addition!  So now we say that Uncle Mike has a condo out back he shares with his twenty girlfriends, the chicks.

Uncle Mike's "condo" - did this coop grow on us?

Uncle Mike’s “condo” – did this coop grow on us?

The coop exterior was finished within a few days, and boy did it look

Ugly green turned out to be not so bad, it's just a chicken coop!

Ugly green turned out to be not so bad, it’s just a chicken coop!

huge!  Steve looked at it and wondered if he over-built!  It is off the ground a foot and 8 feet tall in the front, so it really looks big!  Mike brought us 4 gallons of unused old exterior paint that I at first thought was an ugly green.  (My only requirement for this coop was that it be “cute”!)  Ugly green was not going to do it, but it was free, s-o-o-o, we had to go with it.  Hey, it’s just a chicken coop!

Steve and I worked on the inside together.  Uncle Mike had given us some old shelves built with 2 x 4’s and OSB.  We took them partially apart and built nesting boxes out of them. We kind of had to jerry-rig it, so it turned out a little crooked, but hey, it’s just a chicken coop.

Taking apart the old shelves.

Taking apart the old shelves.

Old ladies can hammer, too!

Old ladies can hammer, too!

2 shelf units repositioned and combined, upside down, one shelf for the roof  - the perfect nesting boxes.  A little cock-eyed and about 150 pounds, but hey - free!

2 shelf units repositioned and combined, upside down, one shelf for the roof – the perfect nesting boxes. A little cock-eyed and about 150 pounds, but hey – free!

We built a slanted wall inside the coop at one end to make a storage area

Slanted wall at one end for storage area.

Slanted wall at one end for storage area.

and  put a cheap used door on it, into the coop side.  Then we sat down in the coop and started figuring out where everything was going to go, how we were going to build the roosts,  etc.  The shelf nesting boxes ended up too big for where we had wanted them, so some refiguring ensued. We scrapped the idea of an exterior door being cut into the coop side to gather eggs, since it looked like the nest boxes were going to have to go on the back wall.   We decided on a roost design and place, built it and put it up.  Then we had Nate and another strong young friend of his, help carry the nesting boxes out to the coop – too heavy for us old folks!

Nesting boxes in place along the back wall of the coop.

Nesting boxes in place along the back wall of the coop.

Then we built a feeder and waterer out of pickle buckets and hung them with chains from the rafters.  Used directions found online!  Love the DIY stuff!   See links for how-to.

We desperately needed the chicks out of the living room, ASAP, as we were having ceiling repaired, amidst all these other projects.  One repair was right over where the chickens were in the living room.  But the

These chicks have got to go!  Outside!

These chicks have got to go! Outside!

weather was still chilly and we worried that they wouldn’t be warm enough.  We hated to lose them after we’d gotten this far.  So we ordered a thermostat with an outlet on it from Amazon and got another heat lamp.  The next day, out to the coop they go!!

Psalm 127

Unless the Lord builds the house,  the builders labor in vain. Unless the Lord watches over the city,  the guards stand watch in vain.
In vain you rise early  and stay up late, toiling for food to eat— for he grants sleep to those he loves.

Children are a heritage from the Lord, offspring a reward from him.

Like arrows in the hands of a warrior  are children born in one’s youth.
Blessed is the man  whose quiver is full of them.  They will not be put to shame
when they contend with their opponents in court.

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