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7 colored free range eggs

Farm Note 14: Eggs!

We have eggs! The ladies are FINALLY laying consistently! 5 beautiful eggs every single day! I can’t even describe how egg-cited I am! I can finally participate in #eggvignette on Insta! Six long years of wanting my own hens, and six longer months of watching them grow and eat and eat and eat and sit around and do nothing, and finally, eggs!

7 colored free range eggs

Just in time for the fall slowdown in egg production to hit. Womp-womp.

The chickens are just my favorite thing ever right now. Last week I told you about how they come running when I bring their scrap bucket outside in the afternoon. Now, they pretty much follow me around the yard ALL DAY just in case I have something yummy hidden in my pockets. I LOVE them! They have the sweetest personalities and the best disposition around the kids. I’m in heaven.

brown and red and blakc hens eating pumpkin grown on vanhoveln farm iowa

Did I mention the eggs? Peepers lays a small blue one like clockwork every morning around 9:00. Honey Bee and Ivy each give a perfect extra-large dark brown egg. The other chickens lay large lighter brown eggs that often come with a bit of bloom that leaves them looking pink. The colors make my artist heart sing. The yolks in the eggs are big, bright orange, and firm. They’re so pretty!

Ok, ok, enough about eggs. We are in full cold-weather prep mode around here. I purchased 25 bales of hay for the goats and stacked and covered it, so they’re set for winter. I might need to add a bit of oats or barley to their feed to boost the calorie content, but I’m hoping to keep them grazing in the yard for as long as possible before the snow hits.

Oreo and S’more have put on a lot of weight and a nice thick layer of fur. They’re rolley-polley little balls of energy, and so much fun to snuggle. They love sunflower seeds and often sniff out some hiding in my pockets. I never knew how much fun goat kids could be. If I’d had known, I would have had them first. (That’s what my mother-in-law always says about grandkids. It seems fitting here. I’m really sorry for the lame jokes today.)

little red chicken coop on iowa farm

Stay tuned for some exciting news on the goat front next week. Hint: I get to share my love of animals with people who don’t have them!

I pulled the last of the produce from the garden yesterday after the first real frost. We’re swimming in leaves right now, and I need to get the leaves into the garden where they can mold and enrich my incredibly clayey soil over the winter. I’m blowing them into the garden and covering them with weed control fabric. In theory, the fabric will warm the leaves and hold in moisture so they break down faster, and will keep the soil warm so I can plant spring greens much earlier. Here’s hoping that works as well as I want it to.

So much fun stuff is on the horizon here at VanHoveln Farm. Keep an eye on our Facebook and Instagram for all the latest news, and if you’re in the Cedar Rapids-Iowa City Corridor area, stop on in. Bring an egg carton, and we’ll fill it up!

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