One thing I’ve noticed about living out-of-town is the measures folks will go to in order to make it work.  If last Thursday’s post didn’t convince you, let me try again.

Back in the day, you lived with your family until you got married.  You moved into a modest home, often only one or two rooms, and started your own family.  As your spacial needs grew and the snow thawed, rooms were added to homes and chicken coops and barns to accommodate new members and machines that needed cover.  You didn’t move.  Families stayed on the same property for generations, for better or for worse.

It’s rare these days to see expansion.  We see upgrading– moving into a bigger home, buying a bigger shed, tearing down and starting over.  But, we rarely see additions anymore. They make us think of poverty, Grapes of Wrath, Materials and personal lack-of-know-how have rendered the addition impractical.  It’s simply cheaper to move. 

We’re not moving.

But, we will need more space.  Eventually, a living addition with a bedroom and garage will be added to The Shoebox.  We finished half the basement just before SuperKid arrived, giving Rylie a bedroom of her own and a living room with carpet GodblessAmerica.  The bigger addition will not be needed for a while, but we’re going to start practicing.

We’ll be adding on to the chicken coop to make room for little peeps this summer.  Baby chicks need their own space until they are bigger enough to run with the big girls.  The big girls, well… they’re a bit like high school girls, if you catch my drift.  A little clique-ish, a little mean to newcomers. They need their space.

The mini-coop will be small enough that it will be impossible for me to become entrapped within.  Phew!  It will be large enough to hold chicks for a couple of months, and it will connect to the enclosed chicken yard to allow for exercise when they’re up for it. Ry has requested a little peep-hole to check on the birdies without taking the roof off, and that is brilliant.  We’re going to keep that kid.

I am simply the visionary around here.  The Boy does the heavy lifting.  But, we make a good team. 

And, a good home.

What would you change about your house, if you could?  Push out the kitchen?  Add another bathroom?  Create a mudroom?


About texasnorth

TexasNorth is a little farm in Western Michigan. It's home to 5 chickens, 25 longhorn cattle, a coonhound (Banjo), a bloodhound (Hank), 2 barn cats, a husband, and 3 ridiculously funny children. The mom of this zoo has been known to mow the lawn in a skirt and roast marshmallows after dark. View all posts by texasnorth

19 responses to “mini-coops

  • Colene

    With all my heart, I would love a mudroom with lockers. As long as we’re wishing, I would also very much appreciate a toy / arts & crafts room like those pictured in the Pottery Barn Kids catalogs (that I receive regularly and now recycle immediately because I know I will never get any of that stuff.)

  • Grace

    I love our little house. It’s older, but very sturdy. It has 3 bedrooms, a nice-sized kitchen, a front room and a back room, and a little one-car garage. The only thing I would change is to add a second bathroom. We only have one, and with 3 people (soon to be 4!)… it would be nice to have another option available to us! 🙂

  • Amy L

    Oh don’t get me started about the house! Ideas are always swirling in my head. Of course there’s not budget for all the ideas I have. We could use another shower some day and it’s nice to dream that our upstairs could be expanded straight up and add more head room, but that would be years from now. Probably the highest on the list is new roof for the garage which cries every times it rains, and new electrical wiring. The cloth wires worry me at times…

  • Jessica

    I would knock out our exterior wall to the living/kicthen and make that space bigger. a bigger kitchen, dining room, family room. Myron has talked about a whole other level!

  • Miss Laura

    So then is the mini coop a bit like a Freshman Campus? Stellar idea for both crowds.

  • Miss Laura

    Oh, and as for me, I just want, you know, a house that’s MINE. That would be a big improvement.

  • trace

    I would expand my home into MI – oh, and have a secret room with a big comfy chair, stacks of books and a mini-fridge full of dr pepper & cupcakes. I could hide in there for hours and the kids wouldn’t have a clue where I am…. but other than that…

  • ecky

    i’m pretty happy with our house…but if we are dreamin’…
    i’d want to add a wrap around porch in the front and take down the hideous 1950’s stone work. i’d knock down all the inner walls on the first floor and make it open concept dining room/kitchen/livingroom – or at least kitchen/dining room.
    oh…and a real actual mudroom would be great. we’ve made one from an unused hallway that works – but dreams are dreams.
    that’ll be all.

    we are gettin chickens on saturday!!! wish us luck that we still have chickens on sunday : P

  • Nancy Lee

    I can’t wait to go smaller and reduce from two floors to one floor…We are getting closer, but my biggest fear is not selling this house in the economy the way it is now…

  • claire

    I like our house a ton! It’s a cute 3/2 brick rancher. In about two seconds I would rip out the carpet in the dining room and living room and put down hardwoods. Oh, and a basement, yes, that would be great.

  • Skogs

    I would create a wormhole that opens into your backyard so I could come over for a cup of inspiration and E could come over to share the occasionally 3 year old induced nervous breakdown … and then I could enroll in Curt Mulder class : )

  • esteph

    i would kill our half bath connected to the laundry room and make the laundry room twice as large so i don’t have to hang clothes in the bathroom all the time rendering it useless anyway!

  • Megan at SortaCrunchy

    What a TREAT to have found your blog today! You are basically living out my little mini-farm dream. I look forward to reading much more about your home sweet home.

  • Jim B

    Two+ feet on the south side of the house so going in the door and to the basement would not be so much work. And a new kitchen in Interlochen. My team mate is also the inspiration and I the heavy lifter.

  • Meg

    I’ve heard the sort of house you describe called a “Good Year House.” When the farm has a good year, the house gets a face-lift or a space-shift or whatever you want to call it. I love the challenge of working with the space we have, using it efficiently and fully. Space needs change all the time with a family- keeps a momma on her toes, and I like that.

  • Margie

    I had to look at this to see if I left a comment. And, I can see I didn’t. I read it, though, possibly while waiting at a red light or procrastinate beginning another load of laundry or picking up for the umptillienth, jillienth time the girls’ room. I like our home the way it is – it’s small but has a great layout. But I would expand it – like, blowing it up with air to stretch the walls and ceilings to give us 2 to 3 to 5 more feet per room. Oh, and a garage. But I’d skip the garage if I could just push the walls outward a little more.

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