Dorkings are dual purpose birds that originated in Italy during the Roman Empire. How awesome is that?? (When they come, I plan to show them my Roman oil lamp and see if they know where it came from or who it belonged to.)
They look like this:
They should not be confused with what my sister calls Dork Birds - little plovers that we'd watch on vacation at Long Beach Island.
(photo also from Wikipedia)
We've also got some laying hens coming - a few more australorps (they lay like champions), a Rhode Island Red, and some Araucanas (aka Easter Egg Chickens).
The extra layers are because we had to order a minimum of 20 (25?) birds (it's a hatchery rule, I swear!), and the dorkings are limited availability (and it's possible we have a slight addiction to poultry). Dorkings are listed as threatened by the American Livestock Breeds Conservancy, so I'm guessing even the breeder doesn't have a lot of them.
We also ordered three hens for one of Bill's coworkers. We tried to give her some of the Hobbits we hatched this spring. She did some reading, built and coop and picked up three mostly grown chickens. We thought they were all hens. But, every single one of them was a rooster. Every one. They all started to crow and she brought them back. They're in our freezer now.
So, expect photos of new baby chickens that will come in the mail in mid-March.
In the meantime, we had some other cool things come in the mail. I participated in a swap on Ravelry where we picked odd holidays and sent presents to a partner to help them celebrate. My holiday was Lost Sock Memorial Day (a day to move on and and realize you are never going to find the lost mates for those single socks that you keep in the back of your drawer) and my partner sent me an awesome package. Everything was wrapped and decorated with single socks. So cute.
We also had an enormous, mysterious package waiting for us one rainy night.
After much excavation...
...we discovered it is an awesome, Billy-sized rocking chair from Bill's parents.
It's currently next to our wood stove and is quickly becoming my favorite spot to knit socks.