Le Maison du Poulet

I have new friends.

You may have met one of them in my last post.  Lilly.



I can honestly say that I never EVER thought I’d see the day when I’d be holding a chicken on my lap while watching tv in my living room. (Did I seriously just type that sentence?)

For those of who don’t know, my Mountain Man and I surprised our kids (and ourselves) by buying 6 baby chicks a few weeks ago. They are very delicate and need to be monitored on a regular basis. Our garage/barn is too far from the house to do that conveniently, and I thought Steve’s bird taxidermy studio was just WRONG in so many ways to keep them in.  So, I opted to let them have free room and board in our upstairs loft.  Their log penthouse.   I’ll collect their “rent” later, when they start laying eggs.

Each chicken has a name (which the girls, of course, tattooed on the chickens’ feet with black permanent marker).  The girls know them all.  I don’t.  (I confess it. I’m a bad chicken Mom.)  But, I do know my very special Lilly…only because she’s the only chick that actually LOVES being held.

I have sort of bonded with Rosie Grace.  She’s a manicurist.

Seriously.  I would lay my hand down into their galvanized salon, and she’d go right to work on my hangnails. (I have many.  Construction is brutal on hands!)


In all the research I did on chickens, I seemed to overlook the information that warned how FAST they grow!!   Here’s Lilly just 3-4 weeks after we got them.



My little girl is growing up…(sniff sniff)…

I know I told you in the last post that the next task was the coop.  But the day we were going to begin, it rained for 2 days.  By the time it cleared up, we decided that we had “plenty of time” before we had to build the coop.   We were more eager to see the streams and pond in our front yard (a different blog post).

So, for a good week or 2 we dedicated our time to the yard.  You should SEEE IT!!!  (Next post)

But, those chickens didn’t pause their growing for us to landscape.

SO…it was time to roll up our sleeves and get’r’done!   The birdie-girlies needed a place of their own to spread their wings. Easter weekend was the goal.


But, first, our family CELEBRATED, because our Jesus is very much alive, speaks, comforts, heals, guides, and endlessly forgives!  If you want specific, detailed examples of His guidance and direct communications with me over the years, read my newest blog site, “Gretty’s Grapes and Grains.”  www.GrettysGrapesAndGrains.com.

We had a houseful, as usual….and boy did we EAT.   LOVE LOVE LOVE it!!  I told the kids to make a funny face for the camera.  They didn’t all cooperate….(unless they’re just funny looking, instead.)


Miss Twinkle had to get dressed up for the occasion.  She was hoping the Easter Bunny would come play.  If he was a cute, boooy bunny, she had to look her best, ya know.
Here’s just some of the food.  The stove and red table are covered in more.   I had to get pics while no one was looking.  (Why do people hate having pictures taken when they’re eating??)  IMG_8380

Don’t you LOVE the annoying bright effects my lightbulbs make in my camera?   I do.  (GRRRRRRR)

Don’t all families have caulk and unfinished 2×4’s and other building supplies laying around their homes EVERY SINGLE DAY including Christmas and Easter???  (Sigh…)  It’s like we’ve been building or something.

We celebrated Easter on Saturday night, because that’s when family was in town and not working. Sunday we went to church, had Easter lunch at Dixie’s house (no pics of it).

Then off to build a French Chalet coop for my birdie-girlies!

Step 1…. clear land.  It’ll go right there…between those 2 trees.



Step 2…. CAREFULLY measure.  Then Steve dug holes for the posts, and filled them with concrete. Dry overnight….

Step 3… start floor


step 4… walls.


Step 5… black paper to protect against rain and moisture.

Funny thing…Steve went up to the roof to cover it.  He asked Reese if she wanted to go. She, of course, did.  Steve told me to get his knife for him.

(Confession)  The last words I recall saying were, “Here, Reese, take this knife to your dad.”….as she’s climbing up a ladder, holding onto a sharp knife with one of her 2 hands, getting ready to be on a high roof.

I think I should have the “Best Mom” award. (Oops)


Step 6… Time for ME to shingle the whole thing. Reese, of course, wanted to help. My little construction worker.


Step 7….personalize it a bit. Birdie-girlies need flowers. And, I painted a sign: “House of Chicken.” (Of course, my French and Canadian reading audience can read it without translation.)

Reiley got the tractor and hauled loads of crushed granite and rocks over to me, while I spread them all…making sidewalks, entry patio, and lined the side with rocks.  Nesting boxes for egg-laying will be on the left wall where the black paper still is.  We’ll put the metal roof on.   And, we’ll add an outdoor, fenced chicken run off the right hand wall.   All of this would have gotten done already, but Steve was out of town all this week.  We just had to get those poor birds out of their confined  quarters before he left for the week.

I’m sure I’ll regret having window boxes.  I’m sure predators will do their darndest to tear them up trying to get into the coop.  BUT…for now…I love them, so oh well.  Time will tell.

The day every parent dreads (or celebrates??)…MOVE-IN DAY!! Our little girls left their log loft penthouse, and are moving on to the independent life in their own pad. (I’d better not catch them throwing any wild parties in there…)


Lilly also needs diamonds and bling…but not sure how I can do it in a coop (but I’ll figure it out!!).

Reese had to teach them where their temporary “roost” is (I never knew a roost was just a perch.)  When they get a bit bigger, we’ll build a droppings table under a higher-up roost.  We were advised to not put anything on the coop floor, but to paint it with semi-gloss paint so it can be washed down or swept out every day, easily.  Faster cleanup.  We just put a quick coat of paint on before Steve left, and sealed up their outdoor run door until he gets back.  Then we’ll spray more paint, build official roost, and nesting boxes.  But for now?  They’re happy…

Awwww….just look at ’em. My little girls are growing up…(sniff sniff…)



Our sweet, thoughtful cat volunteered for “guard” duty that day. (mmm hmmm)

Like any concerned [chicken] parent, I went to check on them that first night.

I tip-toed out there very quietly….

…..crept up to their window (to see if any loud parties with neighborhood roosters was taking place…they are cute chicks, you know)…..

……and saw my sweet, innocent birdie-girlies sleeping…(but not on their roost??).

Maybe they’re too little, still…

In case they’re chilly in 75 degrees, I’m going to bring their heat lamp out there.

Shhhh…..don’t wake them up….


To go to next post, click here: “Rolling with the punches…”.   This blog is a continuous story.  To start from the beginning, click here: “Welcome to Cottonwood Creek“.   To watch my children, husband and I build our log home, start here: “What do Vegas and logs have in common?

Or, visit my new blog site, filled with my personal stories….www.GrettysGrapesAndGrains.com



7 thoughts on “Le Maison du Poulet

  1. Hi!
    Just a quick spell check from a Frenchie: “maison” is feminine so it’s “La Maison” not “le”.
    Nice blog!


  2. Thank you! If you keep reading, you’ll see what happened and what changes we made. I wish I had gotten this message long ago :). Our new batch of 12 are healthy and happy and laying already. Love it!


  3. Cute coop! If predeators are a problem, you could put the window boxes above the windows and wrap them in metal. That way you can keep the window boxes, they’d be high off the ground, and the metal wrap would make it hard for greedy paws to hold onto. A little unconventional, but who wants to be conventional?


  4. The coop is absolutely wonderful. And I can’t believe how the chickens have grown! I can’t wait to see the landscaping. I think another visit is in our future. We have to keep up with your progress! LOVE it!


  5. LOVED THIS POST  It made me laugh out loud!  You are a terrific chicken writer!  Does Lily make me a chicken grandma?????  Hummmmmm.  Maybe she’ll give me eggs for b’day?  And grandparents day?   Rejoice in the Lord always, and again I say, Rejoice. Philip. 4:4


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