Weekend Rambling

Here’s to another nice weekend.

Saturday included working on a book I’m starting to write with a friend….

Then what turned into redneck style backyard target practice with a tiny BB gun. (My roommate dreamt this up since I wouldn’t let him shoot bb’s in the yard without a way to catch them all)- (yes it’s PVC and a fitted sheet… It worked surprisingly well.)

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Rocharin for our weekly Thai food (of course)…

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While we were there Jack, the awesome owner showed us this new thing Kuapay, so we tried it!

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Hoohkah (where Lindsey and I go to chill and blog), and crazy roommates.

I also sent my rough cut of Rusty J‘s music video to him!! I cannot wait to hear his thoughts and see the tweaks he’s going to make.

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Sunday included church…

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More book writing… then group car washing with Riley and my favorite neighbor James…

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Echo was “helping” with the car wash.

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Then Korean BBQ with Riley and Hannah! (Thank you for dinner Hannah!)

And of course like everyday a little time spent checking on the girls & collecting eggs.

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Also check out:

Filmmaking & Cookiebaking’s Instagram

Sister site: Craft Making and Drag Racing

Lindsey’s Jewelry: Hard Wear by Lindsey (Awesome stuff)

Rustified.com – Lifestyle Inspirations from a Renaissance Man (I love his blog- 365 page book for this year, recipes, & daily inspirations)

Rusty J’s Music Site

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Differences in Chicken feeds

This morning I’m headed to my favorite feed store to stock up on chicken feed, for my three girls every time I go I get 80 Lbs worth, they eat a lot!
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This is where I go to get my favorite chicken feed, they rock! Feed Barn in Costa Mesa, CA

Here’s what I buy my girls, Soy Free Layer Feed from Scratch and Peck Feeds. Feed barn is the only place within 50 miles of me that carries this great feed from Washington state.

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Soy Free Layer Feed (This is from their website about the feed.)

Description: Soy Free Layer is the complete diet for your laying hens. This is the final product in our poultry series intended to follow our Soy Free or Naturally Free Grower and Naturally Free Starter Feeds. This is a whole grain mash feed made with our specially formulated nutrient mix and contains No Soy . It does contain Non-GMO Verified Corn for an added boost of energy which is especially helpful in winter months.
Product Features:

No Soy
No GMOs
Fish Meal for extra protein to promote growth
All necessary Vitamins and Minerals for optimal health
Locally-sourced, Unprocessed Whole Grains!
Available in 25lb and 40lb bags. *Shipping limited to 25lb bag.
Ingredients: See feed label for complete list of ingredients. Scratch and Peck grains are Verified Non-GMO by the Non-GMO Project and come directly from local farmers in the Pacific Northwest.

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They also have this layer feed, it is their Naturally Free Layer Feed, Corn & Soy Free.

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Another popular feed is from Modesto Milling. This feed is used by friends of mine that are in the process of getting Certified Organic Eggs.

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They also have an Organic Soy Free layer feed. (I didn’t know they had this until just now! I may try a bag soon)

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Both feeds are great, I prefer my girls only have soy free because soy isn’t exactly a normal part of a chickens diet plus I try to avoid soy myself, it’s in so many of our foods now! (You cant even find chocolate chips without soy anymore!)
My mother is completely soy free so my eggs are the only ones she can eat, as commercially chickens are feed normal chicken feeds that contain soy. Here is an article about soy, I have looked into It much further than this but there’s a quick look.

The reason I have sought out Scratch and Peck Feeds is that they keep the ingredient count lower and purer plus they are whole grain!! I love this about their feed and after researching tons of local(ish) feed company’s this is what ultimately won me over.

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What do you feed your hens? Do you get pellets, crumbles, whole grain? Do you choose regular or organic? So you search out specialty feeds?

Please note! I am only discussing Layer feeds today, not chick starter, Grower, or Broiler feeds. As far as I know both company’s carry those as well, plus feeds for other animals but today I am only sharing Layer feeds.

***Also PLEASE NOTE, this is all my personal opinion and information from their websites i found. ‘Scratch and Peck Feeds’ and ‘Modesto Milling’ are not compensating me nor do they even know who I am. This is NOT a sponsored post.

Also check out:
Sister site: Craft Making and Drag Racing

Lindsey’s Jewelry: Hard Wear by Lindsey (Awesome stuff)

Rustified.com – Lifestyle Inspirations from a Renaissance Man (I love his blog- 365 page book for this year, recipes, & daily inspirations)

Rusty J’s Music Site

Chickens: How to stop egg breaking

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Earlier this week my girls started breaking and eating their eggs! Totally gross and very frustrating as I am so glad to finally be getting 3 eggs a day!

I started looking on Backyard Chickens and Wikihow

I cleaned them up right away, then decided to start trying some of the solutions I found.

• My girls tend to pull all their straw out of their boxes so I put more since as you see above there was none.
This helped a lot! I got all three eggs this morning!

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• It could also be a lack of calcium, even though they have access to oyster shell. So I have given them more yogurt which they love and spread some oyster shell around where they scratch.

• I’ve had golf balls in the nesting boxes like recommended (I had put them in a while back to teach them where to lay)
Since the golf balls are so different from their eggs they don’t peck at them like they do their eggs, I had to come up with a more realistic fake egg. So that when they peck they are detoured by the hardness.
Lindsey found these awesome wooden eggs at Joann’s and she painted them the light peach/tan that is perfect!!
I am going to add these to the coop as soon as they’re dry!

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• My last resort is one thing off Wikihow – to put mustard in an egg, they recommend in one they ate but I got plastic Easter eggs and if needed will put the mustard in there! Then if they peck enough to get it open they will get mustard and hopefully will hate it enough to stop for good!

Also check out:
Sister site: Craft Making and Drag Racing

Lindsey’s Jewelry: Hard Wear by Lindsey (Awesome stuff)

Rustified.com – Lifestyle Inspirations from a Renaissance Man (I love his blog- 365 page book for this year, recipes, & daily inspirations)

Rusty J’s Music Site

Chickens helping in the garden

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Yesterday the I let the girls out in the garden with me for a while, they scratched up my garden beds all over the yard. Luckily this was a good thing for me as I have really been needing to do this! I saw them doing all this and it prompted me to finally clean out the dead pumpkin vines all over.

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Now this planter is all prepared for spring veggies I’m starting seed for!

We also moved their coop today at my friends prompting. It really needed to be done, they had mounded everything so bad they were running out of space!

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We put them up in the coop to do this since Echo was in the yard, I don’t think they were very pleased until they came out and saw their new space that still has some grass in it 🙂

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After all this I flattened out the mess and tried to spread it around since its hopefully going to be great fertilizer.

How do you handle the mess from your coop? Do you spread it around the yard, compost it, or throw it away?

That’s all for today but I will leave you with a few other photos from their roaming today.

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Also check out:
Sister site: Craft Making and Drag Racing

Lindsey’s Jewelry: Hard Wear by Lindsey (Awesome stuff)

Rustified.com – Lifestyle Inspirations from a Renaissance Man (I love his blog- 365 page book for this year, recipes, & daily inspirations)

Rusty J’s Music Site

Eggs!

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First off I apologize for the state of my coop in these pictures, (I’m cleaning it out today)

Last night I was showing a friend my chickens and their coop via a cell phone flashlight and found 5 eggs!

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I really should have been checking the nesting boxes! The first week Starla was laying she laid on the coop floor or in the run (even though I have golf balls in the boxes). Everyday since I’ve checked twice a day and collected at least 1 egg everyday. So I was a bit shocked to find 5 eggs that appear to be from one of the my Red girls.

Counting these new 5, my girls have laid 20 eggs in 2 weeks! I’m so excited to finally be able to share them with friends and family 🙂

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I marked the found 5 with an X since I will need to check them before they are eaten. Since they were not collected promptly they definitely need to be water tested. I will post this when I do it. It cannot be done until we are ready to eat them as doing this will disrupt the cuticle and ultimately let bacteria into the egg

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What is your egg production difference from winter to summer? Is it minimal or extreme? How many eggs do you get per hen a day in the summer/winter?

Also check out:
Sister site: Craft Making and Drag Racing

Lindsey’s Jewelry: Hard Wear by Lindsey (Awesome stuff)

Rustified.com – Lifestyle Inspirations from a Renaissance Man (I love his blog- 365 page book for this year, recipes, & daily inspirations)

Rusty J’s Music Site

Guarding her egg.

So far Starla has laid 4 eggs this week. Yet I haven’t eaten one yet! This morning I have friends coming over for brunch and we are going to try them today.

Yesterday she laid the egg in the run for the first time and was guarding it when I tried to take it.

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This is the biggest egg by far. I can’t wait until my other two girls finally start laying.

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This one (above) Lucy likes to scream at me, I keep worrying she’s going to upset the neighbors! She waits till I’m home and starts screaming to demand things (at least that’s how it seems) demanding to be let out, demanding at treat (lettuce or yogurt), food, or just to be a jerk I don’t know.

Friends with chickens, do your hens do this? My girls have never been around a rooster so I know they didn’t learn it that way.

Also check out:
Sister site: Craft Making and Drag Racing

Lindsey’s Jewelry: Hard Wear by Lindsey (Awesome stuff)

Rustified.com – Lifestyle Inspirations from a Renaissance Man (I love his blog- 365 page book for this year, recipes, & daily inspirations)

Rusty J’s Music Site

Chickens all grown up…

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I realized after I posted about our first egg that I have not shared any recent photos of my girls. They are full size now and look so different then they did as pullets.

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Yesterday we got the second egg! It’s so great to go look in the coop and see an incredible egg sitting there waiting to be collected.

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What are your chickens favorite treat? I would love to hear your comments!

My girls LOVE yogurt! This is by far their favorite thing. They also love lettuce, spinach, and other greens.

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(Kind of hard to see but they dive in and get yogurt all over their beaks until that cup is complexity empty.

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That’s all for now! Have a beautiful day and check out:

Sister site: Craft Making and Drag Racing

Hard Wear by Lindsey (Awesome stuff)

Rustified.com – Lifestyle Inspirations from a Renaissance Man (I love his blog- 365 page book for this year, recipes, & daily inspirations)

Rusty J’s Music Site

Chickens first egg!

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There’s an egg, there’s an egg!!! My neighbors probably think I’m crazy (which I probably am) since I just kept saying that in the back yard, but I was excited.

After 6 months we finally got the first egg from my girls. I think it was Starla (my Barred Rock) but I really don’t know. The other two need to catch up!

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Echo thought this was all very interesting, she wanted it.

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Now I can use the adorable porcelain egg crate I got from Crate and Barrel a while back. (This also makes me very happy (I’m a nerd, I know)

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How old we’re your chickens when they started laying? How many eggs do you get in winter vs summer?

PLEASE NOTE, this is all my personal opinion, ‘Crate & Barrel’ is not compensating me nor do they even know who I am. This is NOT a sponsored post.

Also check out:
Sister site: Craft Making and Drag Racing

Hard Wear by Lindsey (Awesome stuff)

Rustified.com – Lifestyle Inspirations from a Renaissance Man (I love his blog- 365 page book for this year, recipes, & daily inspirations)

Rusty J’s Music Site

Chickens, growing up

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They are getting big so fast! I absolutely cannot wait for them to start laying.
Everyday I enjoy watching Lucy, Ethel, and Starla interact with each other and with our dog Echo ( especially Starla and Echo)

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It’s been so hot here in Southern California that i started giving them lots of fruit, watermelon, strawberries, frozen grapes, and even tomatoes. They have run out of green grass in their run so now I’ve been giving them lettuce or letting them out to roam the yard and graze on the grass outside their run.

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I would love to see your posts about your backyard flock, big or small!

Little chicks in their new home and some questions for fellow chicken keepers!

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My little girls are approx 6 weeks old now! They are growing so fast.

I finally got the coop moved to its final spot which took 5 people since we were dumb and built it on the other side of the fence. We had to lift it up and over the fence. The neighbors came and helped my roommate, Eddie, and I move it. I bought everyone pizza and beer as a thank you.

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Okay so here is where I really need your input!

From everything I have read when your chicks move to their coop they need to stay inside for two weeks not let into the run, so there learn where home is. Also to aid in them learning to go back in as evening falls, so I don’t have to go shoo them in every night.

It has been so hot here in southern California the coop seems too hot durning the day, so I have been opening the run door for them. By noon the first day in the coop they were ‘panting’ and had their wings half spread. I took this to mean they were too hot. What is you experience with this?

They have learned how to use the ramp and come and go from the coop to the run as they please. The first night they didn’t put themselves away, they huddled in a corner at the bottom of the ramp and I shooed them in. In the days since when I see they are all in the coop and it’s nearing evening I just close the door. Though I did still have a night where I came home late and one was still down in the run. I have cut extra vents in the coop to aid ventilation but I do not want to cut to many and make the coop drafty. I also have kept their brooder light in the coop until their feathers all Finnish coming in, but it’s only on after I close the run door. What have you found with your chicks learning their new coop and learning to put themselves inside at night?

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Here is the other area I need input, aside from the pic below where Lucy is trying to walk onto the top of the door my little chicks haven’t really shown a desire to roost. They have the wood roost in the coop. Could it be to high for them? Or maybe they need a ramp?
I have also put a 1/2 inch PVC roost bar in the run ( pics shortly) and they will hop over it but don’t stay on it.

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That’s all for now! Overall my girls seem happy and healthy and that’s all that really matters. I definitely appreciate your input and I would love to see your posts about your chickens!

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