In the beginning, there were chicks. The chicks were small and fluffy and vulnerable. They needed food and water, a heat lamp and shelter. As the chicks grew, some decided to fly free, leading to their untimely demise. Then there were four. And those four grew into big, splendid chickens, still requiring food and water, a heat lamp and shelter.
One of the cocks does indeed crow, but not just at dawn. More like whenever he's moved by the crowing spirit, which is all the damn time.
Every morning, The Chicken Mistress trudged up the lane to let the chickens out of their coop. And every evening she trudged up the lane again to shut them in safely for the night. When the weather turned bitter cold, The Chicken Mistress also carried fresh water every day to replace the water that had frozen in the night. The Chicken Mistress bought and carried 50 pound sacks of chicken feed, made sure the chickens had grit to aid their digestion, and faithfully turned the heat lamp on and off as needed so the chickens wouldn't freeze.
The Chicken Mistress did all of this with no expectation of any return on her labors in the near future. The Chicken Mistress (who is a novice Chicken Mistress and therefore does not know jack shit about chickens) was assured by The Chicken Gurus that chickens need lots of sunlight before they begin laying eggs, and so no eggs were expected until spring.
So imagine The Chicken Mistress's surprise when she went into the coop to check the water supply last night and damn near stepped on these:
Well, slap my ass and call me The Chicken Mistress. Them's EGGS.
P.S. The Chicken Mistress and her Chief Consort ate the eggs this morning and pronounced them good.