Twelve years ago our family packed up our large two BR apartment in Chicago and moved our family of six to a *city* (all 18,000 people) called Ottawa. The house in square footage was equal to the apartment, but having a yard, garage and pool made all the difference.
Two weeks later we enlarged our family by one with a German Shephard/Lab mix puppy and welcomed Lucky to the family. She was cute and precious and the kids loved being able to have a dog. Four years later another dog, smaller breed, Rat-Terrier but more energy than any one family should ever have to deal with! We named him Winston Churchill because he has attitude. Six more years later we added another dog, an even smaller breed, a Yorkie-Poodle Mix! His ears are bigger than his head so he was fondly named Gizmo.
Now, twelve years after our first animal addition we added eight chickens to our backyard.
Seso, Yema, Pico, Huevo, Sally, Hulk, Auburn and Georgia! Seso is a LegHorn; Yema, Pico and Hueve are Cinnamon Queens; Sally and Hulk are Black Sexlinks and Auburn and Georgia are Rhode Island Reds. (our youngest daughter is a Spanish major hence the first four names!). Building our coop was a blast. Trying to find lumber and such without much out of pocket expense wasn't easy, and not reality, but we were able to build without much expense. It had to be a sturdy structure because in the fall and winter we frequently have raccoons and oppossums in our neighborhood.
As soon as I can figure out how to upload photos from an iPad you will see our creation made from recycled wood from a friend's remodel, with the frame from the kids bunk beds that were collecting dust in the basement.
As of today, 9/18/12, we found three eggs in their nesting boxes, all the same box. Now to figure out which chicken(s) laid the eggs. I'm surprised because we got them on May 11th & they were only a few days old. These chickens are laying eggs at 4 months and everyone told me not until 6 months old.