I get absolutely giddy when we are able to reuse a structure on the property that has long gone unused and forgotten.
Like the cheep shed, which is now our primary winter housing for all of our chickens and rabbits. And occasionally also used for lambing jugs and shearing holding pens.
For the last two years we've housed our heritage breeding flock of turkeys in the cheep shed with our chickens. But I wanted a new space for the turkeys this year.
Not because they don't get along with the chickens - they cohabited just fine last year. The problem arises in the spring when the turkeys start to lay eggs.
Although I provided several large plastic dog kennels as nest boxes for the turkeys, they preferred to use the chicken nest boxes.
This seemed dangerous to me, as they sometimes got stuck, and sometimes more than one hen tried to share a box together!
They also ended up breaking quite a few eggs in the process.
So this year I wanted a separate place for my turkeys.
There was this very old, old chicken coop on the property, a building the former owners had used before they built the cheep shed.
Last spring a mama skunk had burrowed underneath it and given birth.
It had quite a bit of junk inside of it and weeds over the rooftop on the outside.
The sills were rotting and there were holes in the walls and roof.
The door had fallen off its hinges, allowing easy access for raccoons (and sometimes my laying hens).
But I only saw the potential. I knew it could work, especially given my hubby's skills with a saw and screwdriver.
So while I worked on mucking out the cheep shed, I left Papa Bear to fix the townhouse.
As expected, Papa did a smashing job on the renovation, including building the turkeys a roost and installing polycarbonate greenhouse windows which let in some of the sun's heat while blocking the winter winds.
Of course there was the usual supervision from Gypsy and Karma.
Then, before we had quite finished, Winter blew in with a vengeance, with temps below freezing day and night, the past few days suffering wind chills below zero.
Normally we wait until the end of November to take our critters off the fields, but there was no time to delay this year.
So last Friday afternoon as the light waned I found myself out in the lower hayfield herding our small group of Sweetgrass turkeys into a catch pen and loading them up in a kennel in the ATV trailer, hauling them up to their new home.
It may not be the Ritz Carlton, but compare to the wide open spaces and bitter winds of the hayfield, I'd say it's downright cozy inside.