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Chicken sitting and Tour de Coops on July 26

While our neighbors' chickens have yet to lay their first eggs, it's been a real delight just watching them grow. They are now out of the swimming pool brooder, and living in their own coop, which features a salvaged window from the ReBuilding Center. How cool is that? It's funny how I hoped to tame my bird phobia by fostering these chicks, and that's worked. But I also felt like it was something I was mostly doing for the kids, since I know I'll never get them a pet of their own. What I've found is that I really enjoy just observing their behavior when the kids aren't around. Funny how the hens will fight over the same piece of lettuce -- just like my kids would -- rather than looking around and noticing there is plenty of lettuce to be had by all. It's cool to watch them spread their wings out in the sun, strut a little, and perch on their roost. I find myself talking to them: "Hi girls! How's everyone today? Hot enough for you? I'll bet you're ready for some nice fresh water. Maybe some strawberry tops??" We also feel like ambassadors, introducing the chicks to various friends and curious neighbors.

So while our neighbors' coop will not be on display (although it is spectacular and I think it should be on next year's tour...), you can see a whole slew of other chicken coops on the Fifth Annual Portland Tour de Coops coming up on July 26, 11am to 3pm.

Chick_hat Zebra_pumpkinJust for fun, here you see my 6-year-old wearing a vintage feathered hat that we felt made her look quite like our neighbors' crested exotic black and white (named Zebra). Pumpkin, the Rhode Island Red, is her coop-mate.

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