Hellooo! I'm planning on getting chickens this spring (or whenever you're supposed to get them?). I am absolutely clueless so plan on doing a lot of reading, and a lot of question asking on here. I'm a pet groomer and have been around both large and small animals as well as small birds since I could walk, but this will be a whole new ball game. I will do my best to ask questions in the correct areas as I know from past forums I've been on it's frustrating but I do have a couple quickies that I couldn't find exactly where to put them since I'm still new to the layout and also the lingo. Without sounding completely cold and heartless...if I get chickens first and foremost for eggs, can they also be used for their meat as well? I'm assuming free ranging means not having them in a "run" which is like a kennel (dog language helps make the transition easier ). I searched the chicken breeds like crazy, but am totally lost. What's a friendly (I have kids too) good egg layer that's able to withstand cold weather? I love the colored eggs, and maybe an unusual looking bird. I plan on 3 hens to start and go from there. I think this site is great already and it's mostly my lack of knowledge, but if you could search specifically for what you need and then have those breeds that meet those requirements pop up would be very helpful. Kind of like match.com for you and your future chickens. Thanks and look forward to gleaning so much from your site and you guys.