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Love is in the air

My days off earlier this week were beautifully timed for the weather. I was small-holding the fort while James walked the Essex Way, from Epping to Harwich, with his friend Steve. Each promising spring day was sunny and bright.

by Ruth Chandler

And apart from a heavenly afternoon in Southwold with my mum - which began with a picnic on the deserted beach - I was mainly at home with the menagerie. In between my two long dog walks each morning, first with German Shepherd Darcy (above) then with the two chocolate Labs, I enjoyed sitting by the chicken run with a coffee while the large Buff Orpingtons and little Araucanas scratched about.

Naturally enough, the fine spring weather has turned the Buff cockerels' thoughts to love and I witnessed a series of rather clumsy attempts from these gentle giants to mate with their far more delicate Araucana female companions. When the boys steamed towards the ladies, all the girls needed to do in order to foil their admirers' advances was to nimbly side step out of the way with the most economical of movements; their suitors crashing into the chicken wire or tumbling along the ground.

It was embarassing. I began to feel a little sorry for the Buffs who remained persistent despite their somewhat hopeless situation. Still, I'm not sure we want Buff-Araucana crossed chicks. What on earth would they turn out like?

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Alice  Jones

Alice Jones

Alice Jones is intern on All About You; she has an obsession for all things fashion and beauty related.

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Carla  Griscti

Carla Griscti

Editorial assistant on allaboutyou; Music lover, travel bee and food fanatic.

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Emma Marsden

Emma Marsden

Food consultant of All About You, loves creating something out of nothing and decluttering.

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Nola  Ojomu

Nola Ojomu

Freelance contributor to All About You. Mission - to have the perfect eyebrows

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Harriet  Edgar

Harriet Edgar

All About You intern; likes fashion, jogging, blogging and EastEnders

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Bernadette  Fallon

Bernadette Fallon

Editor of All About You; an online journalist with a fetish for glossy magazines.

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Adrienne  Wyper

Adrienne Wyper

Deputy editor of All About You. I love cycling, cooking and creating

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Carol  Muskoron

Carol Muskoron

Associate editor of All About You, loves life (mostly) and one-pan recipes (always).

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Rachael  Ashley

Rachael Ashley

SHE's deputy editor and single mum of two embodies the SHE motto 'Busy and loving it!'

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Kate Gilbert

Kate Gilbert

Lifestyle Co-ordinator Good Housekeeping; believes in style,substance and big girl shoes.

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Marie  Campbell

Marie Campbell

Marie Campbell is assistant to the editor at SHE and also writes for the lifestyle pages.

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Natalie  Glock

Natalie Glock

Editorial assistant on All About You; a Parisian in training and amateur baker.

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Ruth  Chandler

Ruth Chandler

Assistant features editor on Country Living, Ruth lives on a smallholding in rural Essex.

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Julia  Goodwin

Julia Goodwin

Editor of House Beautiful since 2006, Julia has been a journalist for over 30 years.

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Josa Young

Josa Young

Josa Young is a writer, cook and internet content consultant.

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