Friday, July 26, 2013

Tick...Tock...Goes My Biological Clock!

Madonna's song is stuck in my head right now...Time goes slowly. It truly, truly does! And the more time passes, the louder my biological clock ticks! So I'm doing anything I can to appease all of this! And it has come down to incubating and hatching my own chicks!

It's been a busy week around here, and it was a bit of a scramble the last couple of days...pun intended. :) After deciding to rehome Miss Carnie, we decided that it was time for me to try my hand at hatching eggs. And I knew what kind of chickens I wanted...Lavender Orpingtons! I fell in love with these chickens last fall when I laid eyes on a hen at Portage Bay Grange here in Seattle. Pictures do not do these lovely birds justice. They are a greyish/purple color, and they have big ol' fluffy butts on top of that!

Earlier this year I did some research on where to purchase the eggs, and I found a place out of Ohio that I wanted to order from. Sadly, their hens aren't laying well right now, so I settled on another place out of Arkansas. Now...word to the wise...DO RESEARCH before you order things! After placing my order I started reading horrible reviews for this place. Luckily, it didn't work out, time-wise, so I cancelled the order and will be getting my $60 back! Then it was time to start searching for someone local who raised the Lavenders!

Luckily I came across The Bradley Farm on Facebook! I messaged back and forth with JoAnn a few times, and luckily she had 7 eggs available for me today! So this morning I made my way to Tacoma and met up with a former coworker and his wife at their beautiful home that over looks the Tacoma Narrows! Now I know she would agree with me when I share this information...she suffers from a horrible case of "chicken math." It's where you intend to have 5 chickens, but somehow you forget how to count and next thing you know you have over 30. :) Luckily...the city of Edmonds has rules that prevent me from succumbing to this horrible, horrible thing! :) But enough of that...their chicken coop and run are amazing! I would love to have the same thing here at our home!

After some catching up, and sharing an AMAZING swiss chard tart that she made, I was kicked out. Now most people would think this is rude, but my former coworker is never one to mince words. ;-) HA! Actually, I feel very fortunate to have met him...and the fact that we are still in contact shows that he knows how to put up with me! :) So, kudos to him! And kudos to his wife for dealing with HIM! :)

After being kicked out, I made my way to The Bradley Farm. Right before I pulled into the driveway I realized that like a complete moron, I forgot to stop and get cash out of the ATM. JoAnn greeted me as I got out of the car and I immediately confessed my stupidity! She smiled at me and told me that I could just HAVE the eggs! Seriously? I offered to mail her a check when I got home, but she told me not to worry. She was so gracious, even including an 8th egg in the carton since some of the eggs were smaller. These are the kinds of things that separate the big corporations from the "little people" who actually take the time to get to know their customers and care about them. Because of this, she will have my business for as long as I raise chickens. If you live in the area, I encourage you to drop by her Facebook page and send her a message to see if she has any hatching eggs or chicks that you are looking for!

After picking up the eggs I made my hour and a half long trek home. And let me tell you...the anticipation of putting the eggs in the incubator is KILLING ME! But after traveling with the eggs you need to let them "settle" before setting them. This gave me time to make my egg candling contraption! I also had time to set up my "Chicken Adventure # 3" page! Just like my previous Adventure page, I will post daily updates as well as pictures! And I HOPE that I have a decent hatch rate so I can chronicle the entire process from setting to hatching to growing to laying! I can't even tell you how giddy I am right now!!!! :)

In about an hour I'll be placing the eggs into the incubator! And let me tell you...trying to decide which egg I will not be incubating is like trying to figure out which of my toes to cut off! **sigh** I wish my incubator held more eggs! Aren't my problems horrible?! ;-) HA! A while ago I took some time and set up everything to take pictures of the eggs during candling...and I snapped a picture of each egg. Here is what one of them looks like...

I can't wait as the days go on, and watching these chicks develop! Like I said before, make sure to check out the "Chicken Adventure # 3" page! You can find the link on the right hand side of my blog! :) I'll update it daily, some days will have pictures, others may not. When I candle the eggs I will definitely post those pictures!

Well I'd better get a few things done before I set the eggs. Then it's time for bed. I have Big Buddy training for Camp Erin tomorrow. I can't believe that camp is in less than a month!! But that's another post! :)

I hope you all join me on this adventure, and make sure to drop me a message or comment...even if it's just to say hello! Until next time...Keep Cooking!

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