Four of them, to be exact. We brought them home a week ago when they were just one day old. Not wanting to name them just yet, I affectionately call them “the peepers”.

Since they don’t have their mamas to snuggle under and keep warm, we have them incubating under a 90-degree heat lamp in our bathtub until their feathers grow in and they are ready for the coop. I kinda wish they would stay these adorable little fluff balls forever, but then they would never lay those tasty farm fresh eggs we so desire…

The chicken talk all started in late 2010 after I heard Novella Carpenter speak at the Commonwealth Club and read her book, Farm City. It was her heartwarming memoir and armchair urban farming adventure that inspired me to join the movement. Having an oversized garden where not much grows but weeds, and being an egg-loving household, we decided to get ourselves some hens. And, in case you’re wondering, San Francisco (like many cities) allows you to keep up to four hens as long as they are 25-feet from any residence.

That year, Peter, my architect husband said he would build me a chicken coop as a Christmas gift. We went through an extensive design phase, going from skyscrapers to space age and everything in between. During this time we also piqued the interest of several friends and family members who said they would be interested in a coop, too. With that in mind, Peter honed his design into a modular coop specifically for urban homes and smaller yards.

He built our coop – the prototype – from scratch, individually gluing 1″x1″ pieces of redwood to create the wood slat roof. He spent three weekends in the woodshop assembling the coolest chicken coop and best gift ever (I think). He is still putting the finishing touches on it, but this is a photo of the model, which it looks exactly like:

Stay tuned, more chicken talk to come…

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