Saturday, November 17, 2012

Building a Chicken Run

What is the first thing that you think you would do the day you feel better after having the flu for a week?: Catch up on all the work you didn't do while you were sick? or ... build an A-frame chicken run to attach to your existing chicken coup?

When I get overwhelmed, I do the least important thing first. So I picked chicken run. It must be a defense mechanism. Oh... I have chickens, did I mention that? Another little project that I do with the kids so they learn more about where there food comes from. Well, sort of, I have no intention of killing Rosebud Chrysanthemum II, Lilly II or Sun Flower... but the coopers hawk has it out for them, hence the two chickens with a number 'II'. So I haven't let them out of their coup/run without supervision since Lilly I died, about a month ago. I was feeling a little guilty because I was sick, they were basically grounded. So I found  items I saved from some of my other projects and drug them outside, along with my tools and my 4 year old assistant.

Hand Saws suck. I'd probably have more success gnawing through a piece of wood with my incisors, the result would look just about the same, but my dentist would not approve. I need to get an electric hand saw, but my father has me so freaked out about severed fingers, that I don't have the guts to buy one. I always have little people running around me and my mom instinct says 'ITS NOT WORTH IT!!'

I decided to make my run 4.2 long because I hate to hand saw and this was half way on my wood so I could use both pieces. I had cedar wood stored in my garage that was in there when we bought our home, I saved it because someone told me it was good for outside, it was expensive, and it smelled nice. 

Of course I split the first piece Cedar with the saw. Did I mention that a hand saw sucks? After ruining 2 planks of cedar, I finally successfully cut 2 in half. Not good odds, I should have given these away to someone with an electric saw. At this point, I'm ready to risk being called 'stubby' and buy the finger eating monster because my cut wood looked like I used a wood chipper. But then I remembered that I could try out the new tool I bought on sale.

OH my Dremel, it was love as first sight. I knew she was going to be my BFF!!  The endless projects we could do together!  I didn't have a chance to read her directions. So I just put on the sanding tool and went at the mangled wood parts. It was going great, until the sanding tool flew out and hit me in the neck. OUCH that hurt. At this point I'm re-thinking that electric saw. I should have read the directions on Ms. Dremel 3000 first because just like most women (myself included), if you don't treat them right, they turn on you. 

<- I found this thing also in my garage. I don't know what it is, but it makes a nice roof. Now all I needed was a hammer. My son lost 3 hammers in his four years of life. Now I can't find my 4th hammer, I can only assume it is hiding from me with his brothers in the basement toy box. I need to buy another, but for now I will use God's Hammer.

It took me entirely TOO long to make this roof, but when I am working with a hand saw and a rock, what do I expect? After ruining another 2 pieces of wood with the hand saw I was ready to get that electric saw again and scrap this entire project. And I would have, but my poor chickens really needed a bigger place to play before I went in to take a nap. So I cheated. I got out my chicken tire and the posts, pushed it in the ground like an A frame, put the little roof on and went to go relax.
This is not what I wanted because it is not easily removable, though it DOES look pretty good. The last run I had out there looked like it was right out of Sanford and Son. I'd ALMOST call this a FAIL but I do have something for the chickens and they were free to roam around all day watching me build something. So I'll give myself a

Injury report: a sand bit dent in my neck and a headache from stepping on that hoe above and having it  smack me in the face. So I'm still not sold on that electric hand saw just yet.