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Chicks Are Home…

…still alive and so am I.

I have worried over them like, well, you have to say it– a mother hen. I believe I’ve had more stress than they have. Are they eating? Why is that one sleeping so much? Is it too hot? Is it too cold? Are they pooping right?

They were peeping at the store, they peeped all the way home, and when they had been in their cage about ten minutes of sort of standing around, they all piled together and passed out. I, of course, feared some sort of instant death. I took myself off to keep busy. Fifteen minutes later my husband reported, “They’re all peeping and eating like crazy.” My response was, “Oh, they are not.” He’s such a one to tease.

Chicks first gluten-free meal

But they were. I’ve been watching them ever since, can hardly get anything done for watching them. They are chickens, for heavensake! Why are they fascinating? And the strangest thing– their little peeping makes me happy. The sound is for me like happy comfort.

They arrived earlier than expected to St. Elmo Feed and Seed, so by the time I picked them up Friday morning, they’d received over 12 hours of water and commercial chick starter. I’m sure God gave this to me so I could feel more confident. I can report, however, that they went at my gluten-free ration with eagerness. I was thrilled.

Let me pause and explain the gluten-free feed is for me– so that I don’t have to be immersed in commercial chicken feed which is filled with wheat and barley. As a celiac, I can eat all the chicken and eggs that I want to, but messing around with the feed presents hazards.

Basically, here’s the mixture we started with: cornmeal already on hand (Bob’s Mill stone ground), millet, steal cut instant oatmeal (McCann’s from Ireland that I haven’t been able to eat and could bear to toss out), alfalfa pellets put in the food processor (doesn’t work too well), brown rice, table salt, then added molasses to make sort of crumbly. They ate it quite happily, as you can see above.

Since then, I’ve learned that the babies love cracked corn softened with a small amount of water, but they do not like the feed mix dampened. I should have gotten alfalfa meal. A dish of milk did not fare well. The chicks very favorite by far, and easy, has been a mixture of cracked corn, Bob’s Red Mill cornmeal, Bob’s Red Mill rice cereal, and McCann’s steel cut oats (Bigstreetrod says, “If this keeps up our eggs will only cost us $15 a piece.”), soaked for a short while in water. Scarfed that stuff right up, as you can see.

So far, so good. We’re all learning, and we’re not dead yet.

11 Comments
  1. What are their names? What an observant mom you are! Day one and you already know the babies’ favorite foods, likes and dislikes. Sounds like they have found a good home. While I am here… as a token of appreciation for your Blog, the words and ideas you share and the many ways in which you inspire, I would like to offer you the Versatile Blogger Award. Please visit the article below, at Granny’s Parlour, to see easy instructions regarding how to accept this award and how to pass it along, should you wish to do so (no obligations). Have a great weekend!

    http://grannysparlour.com/2012/02/11/writing-from-the-heart-seven-random-things/

    February 11, 2012
    • Granny– I very much appreciate you honoring me with the Versatile Blogger Award. Especially from so accomplished and versatile blogger as yourself. I have learned scads of interesting things at your blog, and simply enjoy each visit there. However, I have chosen not to take part in memes. It is an effort to caretake what I can of a stretched schedule.

      February 11, 2012
      • Completely understood! I am new to this award system. Part of me is afraid to impose or annoy other when I choose to participate. Another part feels I want to acknowledge others and they are free to gracefully accept and leave it at that, as you did. Everyone has their own level of comfort that that is perfectly alright. Also, thank you so much for your kind words. “Accomplished blogger?” Those are big words. I thoroughly enjoy my visits to your blog as well and appreciate the fact that you think about daily circumstances in your life in terms of a broader picture and a means to “grow” your perspective. Have a great week.

        February 12, 2012
  2. Brenda M in Oklahoma #

    You got your Easter peeps early! Enjoy — this is the cutest they’ll ever be. In case you haven’t checked last week’s post, I left a comment you might want to check out.

    February 6, 2012
    • Thanks, Brenda. I did look at a few of the sites you sent. I’ve looked at soooo many, and learned much. I am very busy this week working out how I want to feed the chicks, and called for jury duty! Sending hugs–

      February 6, 2012
      • Brenda M in Oklahoma #

        You just have more than you can say grace over (as always)! Hopefully you’ll get a routine established with the new babies and maybe they won’t pick you as a juror or it will be short. That’s always so stressful. Sometime, I’ll have to tell you my story when I had to appear for federal jury duty.

        Much luck with everything!!

        February 7, 2012
  3. Oh dear, you’re in for a fun time. Welcome to the chicken club!

    February 4, 2012
    • What a fun experience! I think they are very lucky chicks indeed!

      February 4, 2012
      • Well, those chicks have landed in luxury, that’s for sure. At least thus far. :) They’re right now in there playing and having a high ol’ time. A delight to watch. I can tell one of the barred rocks is starting to recognize my voice.

        February 4, 2012
  4. Dee #

    This post made me smile. Glad you worked out the chicken feed issue. They’re fascinating because they are life in its abundant joy.~~Dee

    February 4, 2012
  5. Nell Jean #

    Oh, fun.

    February 4, 2012

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