Chickens have come into our life via 4H! The last fair my kids were in they decided that they REALLY wanted to show chickens next year (I made them wait a year and do research to see if they were prepared for the responsiblity). I have three daughters in 4H, and they are super excited. So here is the story of our chicken jouney- lol!
Alex getting the eggs ready for the Hova-bator.

We ordered 6 BLRW bantams, 12 SLW, 12 silkie eggs, and my neighbor gave me 6 eggs from her red star hens and they all seem to be fertile (although it is hard for me to tell because they are brown- we will know in time. I don't know what kind of chickens they will be since they are crossbred??). We had to toss 4 BLRW, 16 (!!) SLW, I was disapointed by the amount of SLW eggs we had to throw away, as those were going to be my layers!! One of the SLW eggs exploded in the incubator day seven- let me say it was STINKY!! (not ordering from that ebay egg seller- they actually sent me 18 and I had to toss all but 2)
When they first went in the bator!

We got a Genesis Hovabator, because it seemed to be pretty easy to use (and it is). I got a hydrometer, and learned to calibrate it- so far the bater is working out great!

MEANWHILE, we are in the process of the coops. Yes, I said coops! Alex, Jessi, and I all have coops we are building! Mine is out of our storage barn (my goal is having it done within 3 weeks), Alex is making hers out of ALL recycled materials and will be a larger chicken tractor, and Jessi is doing the same but on a smaller scale. It is actually pretty amazing what those girls can do with their imagination :) .

Alex cutting a hole for a ventilation vent!

This will be 'my' coop (or the big one). If you saw this place a week ago, you would be amazed! I'm going to add insulation and paint it as well as add a hardware cloth divider, door and cleaning access. I am eventually going to get one of those automatic door openers, but I am thinking that will be with our spring tax return :) . I am also going to add solar lights (soon) although we have 3 windows.
Here is one of the Silkie chicks in the egg (day 7). The curved thing at the top of the egg is the chick, and you can see it's circulatory system below. It was actually 'swimming' around!

More to come!