Thursday, May 13, 2010

Chicken Tractor or Bust

May has been a very fast month! I have been working at school more than I ever should. Way too many students know my name and I know way to many students by name. The other day I discovered that I am referred to as "the sweater sub"! At least this is the name they say without getting suspended.

The best part of May is always Mother's Day, which coincided this year with Erin's birthday, so it was REALLY Mother's Day for me. I can't say often enough how very proud I am to be the mother of three of the best people I know. It astounds me that I have had a part in their lives and their adventures. Their constant gifts to me is that they continue to take on new challenges and make new adventures to share. (Like watching a suspense-filled movie that keeps you on the edge of your seat!) On Sunday Dave and Kyrsa made a great dinner and Seattle offered sunshine and warm weather. We drank wine and ate in the sun, pretending we were on the Mediterranean- the best any day can offer.

What with teaching all day and rain visiting too many nights, my garden is over run with weeds BUT the chickens are finally out of the basement. (It will take a good week to get rid of the dust.) The building of the chicken tractor took place Bloomsday weekend (the first weekend in May) while David was in Spokane. It was much more difficult that expected even though I thought long and hard before starting.

I was able to use many 2x2's from the A-frame remodel but the big mistake was using the heavy plywood suggestted by the plan. Even with 2 sets of wheels, it is quite difficult to move. This may end up as the winter hutch placed next to the rabbit hutch after I construct the lighter model for summer. I know a few more tricks now!

The chickens seem pretty happy scratching at the grass and the grubs. Tonight when David helped me by putting both sets of wheels under the tractor, all 6 chicken escaped through the big gap. They were so amazed by all the interesting sights that I was able to catch them and return them to safety, but I will have to start training them to follow the grain!!

As most chicken owners have recounted, chicken are quite entertaining- in the way that watching a train wreck captures your attention. They are certainly NOT the most intelligent of animals. When they first entered their new digs, they had a hard time figuring out that food could be found in that big red dish. Eventually they get it and even without chicken feed, they are entertained by the bits and pieces they find on the ground. So, now the chicken tractor is home and I am done with 2 long weeks in school. We have all survived! David and I leave tomorrow for a short trip to Vancouver and I can only pray the tractor will remain secure.

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