Victory!!! I took another hour of vacation time to try to give myself enough time to do some work on the coop tonight and I managed to do quite a lot! I moved the back row of concrete piers, got the frame up and all connected (and the corners are actually square - yes!), and managed to also get the last remnants of limestone chop block into place for yet another small veggie bed.
Yes, my back is tired, and no I don't care - I am thrilled that I was able to get all this done - all on my own!
Now I just need to decide what to plant in the new bed. I still have some Yukon Gold seed potatoes that I need to put somewhere, so maybe those can go in this new bed. I also have been thinking about getting an artichoke plant - those get quite big so that might be better planted on its own. Another option would be something like raspberries which my daughter and I absolutely love, so I need to think about it and figure out what would be best. I still have one other small area out back where I could potentially put another bed, and I have a front fence that has nothing on it that might be great with raspberries growing on it. So I need to think through the space I have left and figure out what's best.
I have a friend who owns a nursery - so maybe I will ask him what he recommends. He also offered to come help me put some siding on the coop for the hen house - and although I am pretty proud for my progress on my own, some help might be good to get things finished. I think in another two or three weeks the chicks are going to need more space, so getting the coop finished sooner rather than later would be great.
The chicks are doing really well - they are getting very bold and don't hesitate to come running for strawberries. They still don't like being picked up - but once they are picked up they settle down. I'm not sure if they will ever like to be picked up; there must be some way to teach them not to mind, but I am not sure how to do it. I may need to ask on the chicken forum to figure out what we aren't doing that we should.
So generally I had a busy evening and now I am off to relax, make myself some dinner, pour another one of those martinis and watch a movie!