The Incredible Edible Egg and Putting the Chic in the Chicken Coop

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When my family moved to our country home in 1995, we were eager to embrace all the wonderful opportunities that country living had to offer.  We mended the old fence and barn and soon added our share of farm animals to complete our little country haven.  Our animal menagerie included a flock of laying hens and a rooster to give us fresh eggs, but over the years our flock decreased and eventually our fresh egg production came to an end.

Recently, after purchasing a $4.00 carton of organic cage free eggs, I discovered all the eggs were disgustingly runny and obviously inedible.  Having this less than satisfactory experience with store-bought eggs, and being aware of the absolute horrors chickens have to endure in the commercial egg production industry, we decided to rebuild our chicken coop and start enjoying our own farm fresh eggs again.

My husband spent all weekend building the new coop and we went to our local feed supplier and bought 4 baby turkeys, 10 chicks and 1 rooster   Like our Rat Terrier, I too find watching the baby chicks completely spellbinding and I have begun to named them based on their personalities.

My favorite is the largest Black Spanish turkey that I have named Hey Zeus.  He is just a baby, but he’s already trying to strut his stuff.  I don’t think the girls are impressed, judging by the expressions on their faces.

Now for my contribution to the new chicken coop; the decor.  My husband is quite the handy man and we always have wood scraps leftover from past DIY projects.  I found these weathered wood scraps and thought they would work out great for making some homemade signs.

Next I gathered up my acrylic paint, paint brushes and paint sponges.  Then I painted the wood a solid color and outlined the edge with a contrasting color, creating a framed effect.

Then I purchased two different stencils.  One was a cursive type and one was block type letters

Using a sharp pencil, I traced out the word Farm Fresh on the wood using the cursive letters and the word EGGS using the block letters.

Then I highlighted the word Farm Fresh in a bright yellow and painted white eggs around the word EGGS.

Next I carefully painted in the words. You will need a steady hand and a very small detail paint brush.

And here’s the finished product.  Add some eye hooks and a chain to hang it and throw on a couple of coats of clear polyurethane to weatherproof and it’s ready for the coop.  Now to decide what to put on the other two signs.

The coop will only be used to protect the babies while they are growing.  As soon as they are big enough, the door to the coop will be left open and they will have free access to the yard and pasture, as nature intended.  If you would like to help support current legislative efforts in banning the barbaric and cruel practice of battery caged chickens in the US egg industry; please visit the Humane Society of the United States website by clicking on this link:  Help Improve the Lives of Laying Hens

The following information was taken from the Penn State Live website.  You can click on the heading below to see the full article.

Research shows eggs from pastured chickens may be more nutritious

The study compared the eggs of the pastured hens to those of hens fed a commercial diet.

“Compared to eggs of the commercial hens, eggs from pastured hens eggs had twice as much vitamin E and long-chain omega-3 fats, more than double the total omega-3 fatty acids, and less than half the ratio of omega-6 to omega-3 fatty acids,” she said. “Vitamin A concentration was 38 percent higher in the pastured hens’ eggs than in the commercial hens’ eggs, but total vitamin A per egg did not differ.”

 “Eggs of the hens that foraged grasses had 23 percent more vitamin E than eggs of hens that foraged clover. “Results suggest that grass pastures may enhance vitamin E in eggs of pastured hens more than clover,” she said.”

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27 responses »

  1. Your sign is great Lori! And I so admire your efforts to introduce people to farm fresh and cage free concepts, both for human health and for the protection of all animals from insane cruelty.

    • Thank you for the kind comment! I think free range eggs taste so much better than the store bought ones. And I know my hens get to live a good life… maybe that makes the eggs taste better? 🙂

  2. Lori! This post touched me ALL over!

    “I don’t think the girls are impressed, judging by the expressions on their faces.” I literally LOL’d

    Your chicken coop is phenomenal! And the DIY sign turned out so, so well! I only wish I lived nearby so I could come visit you and Hey Zeus. 🙂

    Thank you for the info load . . . honestly, I never knew so much about eggs! I am well-informed now. I tend to eat only the whites, but I will pass on this info to the Hubs, who loves him some eggs.

    I used the link to pop on over to the Humane Society — thank you for encouraging people to get involved. It took me all of 3 seconds to sign the petition and then share in on Facebook.
    Earlier this week I had an experience I wish I could “un-experience” . . . it’s a rather sad story, so I will refrain rom sharing (It bothers me when people pass on sad stories with zero happy ending.) Anyway, it stirred my heart and has compelled me to get involved with animal rescue in any and all ways I am able. I already have a rescue dog and, should we have the space for it, plan to rescue more. But there are other things, most certainly, that one can do to help stop mistreatment and cruelty of animals. The power is in our hands. We are responsible for doing something.

    Blessings to you, sweet lady,

    ~ Cara

    • Thank you sweet Cara! I so wish you lived close by too! Every evening before the sun goes down, Scott and I let the chicks out to forage in the yard. We grab a cold beer or glass of wine and sit in the shade and just watch them chase grasshoppers or scratch in the dirt. It’s become our quiet time to unwind and reconnect. Then, when the sun starts to go down, the chicks instinctively go back to the coop to roost for the night. It doesn’t take much to entertain me. 😉

      And a GREAT BIG THANK YOU for your heart to get involved with animal welfare. I hate hearing those horror stories too, (thanks for not sharing it.) 🙂 but like you said, it does stir the passion to do something about it, and fortunately the Humane Society makes it very easy to get involved.

      My goodness, that Mississippi Mud Cake you made looks so good!

      Xoxoxo!

      Lori

  3. Hey, I think your site might be having browser compatibility issues.
    When I look at your website in Ie, it looks fine but when opening in Internet Explorer,
    it has some overlapping. I just wanted to
    give you a quick heads up! Other then that, very good blog!

    • Thank you! I’m not sure what’s wrong, but I’ve also had issues with Internet Explorer and had to switch to Firefox. I’m using the free blog option and I probably need to upgrade to the Pro version. I will be checking out your site for nesting box plans. Thanks for stopping by my place!

  4. Love this, Lori! I used to live on a small farm (the remnants of the once bigger farm that had been sold off for houses:() where we had chickens and peacocks. Gathering those fresh eggs was one of my favorite times of day. Sharing them with family and friends was also quite delightful.

    P.S. your sign is great, too!

  5. You are quite the artist! I like the chicken coop sign! What a cool idea. I love chickens. A friend has black Silkies and other hens. She gives fresh yard eggs to me. They really are better tasting eggs. I grew up visiting my grandparents’ farm and feeding corn to the chickens from the corn crib. My granny was a tiny woman who walked outside, grabbed a chicken, wrung its neck, and had it for supper. The chickens really do keep running after the head comes off! :-0
    I really enjoyed this post, Lori! Thanks.

  6. A bit late but just had to say I loved this post, both your creativity (your signs are fab) and highlighting the plight of caged birds. We are lucky in the UK (and EU) that caged birds have been banned, but even so it’s not the same as raising your own. We love our tiny suburban backyard ‘flock’ (4!). Not only are their eggs more nutritious and vastly more tasty (I can’t bear to order eggs out as they taste terrible in comparison), but the hens are so entertaining and great for pest control too!

    • Thank you Kellie! We have a long way to go here in the US regarding animal welfare. It sickens me to think about how animals are treated in our food production system. I couldn’t find any groups here that rescue battery hens, I called a few egg production plants and basically got nowhere fast. Right now, I’m just working through the Humane Society and hoping enough people will get involved to make a difference.

  7. What a wonderful story and process. I am a staunch animal advocate, and I recently learned that most “cage-fre” and “free-range” chickens suffer the same inhumane debeaking that the battery caged birds, do–so there really is no humane alternative other than buying from real farms–direct. Good for you all the way on this–a great cause, a lovely end product–a good read. 🙂

    • Thank you for stopping by and leaving such a lovely comment. Yes I agree, the more I learn about the commercial food industry the more I am move to support our local organic farming community. Blessings to you! 🙂

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