Saturday, June 8, 2013

So Long............

For those of you that have followed my chicken adventures, I have bad news and I have good news.

First the bad news.

My last surviving chicken is going to a new home today.

I love chickens but can not endure seeing another one killed.

If, ever, in the future I get more chickens, I will blog again !

The good news is that I will start a new adventure and a new blog.

Growing up Grandma, at

Don't know how many grandmas read blogs but I will give it a try.

There are all kinds of mommy blogs, but where is the advice for the "re-moms" ?? *

I shall prove myself worthy, I hope, and let you know how it is going.

Thanks for reading.


*copyrighted word.

Monday, June 3, 2013


Was it fate that I called Gracie a freak of nature one day and the next day "nature" takes notice of her and destroys her?

It looks like a fox targeted her and since she couldn't run well or fly at all, she had no escape.

I can't tell you, gentle reader, how sad this makes me.

She had so many struggles and fought back like a trouper to beat every single one.

And then a stinking fox, in broad daylight, with my front door open and the dogs and cats running in and out, has the gall to make her a meal.

It is senseless.

The other chickens are fine. but they are just chickens.

At least today.

Gracie was that one chicken exception that makes caring for chickens NOT a chore.

I am overwhelmed with 'Chicken Loss Despair'.


RIP sweet bird.

Sunday, June 2, 2013

Frankenchicken............It Lives !!...................

While on vacation, I left my assorted animals in the capable care of family and friends.
It was a lovely vacation with no stress or worries about home and all the care a small city farm requires.

While on vacation, however, I did learn to worry about freaks of nature !!!!
Take for example.......GLOW IN THE DARK ROACHES they were developed in Florida!
Who thought that was a good idea?
Dark bodied roaches aren't terrifying enough??
Now I can see them crawling towards me on the wall in the middle of the night ??!.
Thanks science !

Did I ever worry that genetically modified food would/could rush towards me and demand sustenance ?
I ignorantly thought we are talking corn or wheat, not livestock !
Well it seems that I have been growing and caring for my very own genetically modified freak of nature !!
Her name is GRACIE.
Thanks science !

My helpful son called one night to let me know that she had grown quite large.
So large in fact that she had trouble getting in and out of her coop !
Well she IS a meat chicken.
Bred to grow fast, die young and be stupid in the mean time.
They rarely live past 2 or 3 months.
They grow so fast that their legs break or sprain under the stress of rapid growth OR they have heart attacks !
Their bodies just can't take it.
Old age is just not in the crystal ball for them.
PLUS they have tiny wings and few feathers.
Thanks science !

I rescued a Frankenchicken !!
A bird put together by science.

She likes being alive it seems and except for the bolts in her neck, her large heavy feet, awkward walk and a love of violin music she is doing quite well !
I kid.
She likes guitar music !!

Yes, my friends, while they rarely live long enough to lay eggs, Gracie is quite productive !

But by being a mutant, she never ceases to amaze me.

Day 1...Small, almost round egg.
Day 2...A bit bigger. more egg like.
Day 3...Nothing.
Day 4...Monster egg !!!

(see egg on left!!!)
Day 5...Normal egg.
Day 6...Shell-less egg !!!

(weirdest thing ever!!)

Since then I have gotten normal eggs from her, but boy did she have trouble getting started !!

So I ask myself........
What the heidi-ho is the 'meat' from these chickens doing to us/me/you ???
I shudder to think.
Thanks science !

“Life, although it may only be an accumulation of anguish, is dear to me, and I will defend it.”
― Mary Shelley, Frankenstein

So thank-you once again for reading my blog.
Vacation is over and I am back at the farm again !
I would adore it if you would follow me or leave a comment !!!

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Chicken Vacation

"I know we've only known each other four weeks and three days, but to me it seems like nine weeks and five days.
The first day seemed like a week and the second day seemed like five days.
And the third day seemed like a week again and the fourth day seemed like eight days.
And the fifth day you went to see your mother and that seemed just like a day, and then you came back and later on the sixth day, in the evening, when we saw each other, that started seeming like two days, so in the evening it seemed like two days spilling over into the next day and that started seeming like four days, so at the end of the sixth day on into the seventh day, it seemed like a total of five days.
And the sixth day seemed like a week and a half.
I have it written down, but I can show it to you tomorrow if you want to see it."

This is far from original, but even on an awesome vacation, this is what it seems like somedays.

I saw a smallish vulture on the side of the road as we were driving and called out,

"Look, a chicken !!!",

"Oohhh, its just a vulture".

JUST a vulture???

I LOVE vultures!!!!

I actually love most birds. (except bluejays and they don't even count as birds because I hate them, but that is a whole other blog)

But I have been seeing chickens where there are no chickens.

Any bird on the ground looks like a chicken out of the corner of my eye.

I am under a chicken spell,

That's all I need.

A chicken, this remote, this paddle ball game...............

This is called an African chicken from the Alligator Farm.

Not really, but I have it written down, but I can show it to you tomorrow if you want to see it.


Thanks for reading !!!

I do so much appreciate it.

Friday, April 19, 2013

"Clever Girl..........."

While researching the behavior of my snake eating chicken (see Rikki Tikki Chicken),
I stumbled upon the fact that the center of the Mexico Flag is an eagle eating a snake.

Interesting enough......

But apparently, all kinds of birds and chickens have been doing this for centuries while I casually saw my chickens as harmless egg producing pets.

NOT freakish, pre-apocalypse, flesh tearing, run for cover, dinosaur birds !!!

It is terrifying and................ INCREDIBLY AWESOME !!!!!!!!!!

Jurrasic Park needs chicken cameos as they pan the woods looking for dinosaurs.

Scientists have been saying birds are 'descendants' of dinosaurs for years

But of course.
How could I have been so skeptical ?

Birds learned how to eat all kinds of nasties as they watched the dinosaurs from up on the branches and it shot them up the evolutionary ladder from weird tree hugger, to a survivalist group.

They could eat the icky stuff and then fly away while dinosaurs just watched, or drowned or got smashed by asteroids or stuck in a pit.

Chik-fil-a needs a dinosaur mascot and dinosaur playgrounds.

I need a dinosaur tattoo.

And Mexico has been celebrating this evolutionary miracle for years.
And I let it go unnoticed.
I am ashamed.

Zilla (who is practically named after a dinosaur) was just carrying on traditions handed down for millenium.
I am so proud.

Yet what happened along this evolutionary path that said "lizardy, nightmare inducing, massively muscled dinosaurs should change into small tweeting fluffy-feathered birds" and that "snakes......... welllll...... they are fine just the way they are"?

As I ponder this I will continue to enjoy my egg laying, food producing, lap roosting, yard birds
and wonder why I have never once had a desire for snakes to follow me around the yard, sit in my lap or become a casserole.

Hmmmmmm............Change or don't change.

Who really is the clever one ????

Thanks for reading my blog !!

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

To Be or Not to Be.........

This blog almost was NOT to be.

What are the odds of finding deadly poisonous things repeatedly in broad daylight?

Pretty good at my house I reckon.

When I first built the chicken coop last year,I was quite worried that weasels, raccoons and foxes would dig under the chicken wire and get my girls as they slept.

So I collected rocks from our yard, as big as I could manage, and put them around the base of the fence.

So far it has protected the hens quite well.

For ME....., it has been like a bad dream.

I have shredded my hands. (gloves are for babies)

I have pinched my fingers. (working in the daylight hours is for babies)

AND I have gotten stung by a scorpion. (I screamed like a baby !)

I was so mad, I can't tell you, but I also learned to check EVERY single rock.

Needless to say after the scorpion bite, I picked up NO MORE ROCKS for months.

Well it was lovely today and I thought I would finish around the coop with a few more rocks.

The FIRST one, the VERY FIRST ONE I pick up, there is a 2 inch scorpion waiting..... SERIOUSLY ???? !!!

Thanks goodness this was one was not mean and just scrunched up and tried not to see me.

So says I, surely that is a fluke.

The next rock could not possibly have another scorpion under it !

So I turn it over..... do a visual,...... and CRIMINITLY !..... there is NOT a

scorpion..... but a BLACK WIDOW SPIDER !!!

And she runs at me !!!!!!

I know all you animal lovers will cringe when I tell you that I smashed her with another very small, unscary, insect free rock from close by.

Because a human can only take so much.

And after all, scientists estimate that there are 200 million bugs for every human, so I don't think my ecosystem will collapse from her death.

The problem here my friends, is that quite possibly I don't have enough insect eating yard birds !!! (wink, wink)

No really, I'm good.

All is as it should be................. except under rocks !

Thanks for reading my blog !!!

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Rikki Tikki Chicken

I am writing this blog late in the evening even though my brain doesn't run on all its cylinders after nine o'clock at night.
Because tomorrow is a busy day for me.
I will be having a physical for the first time in 12 years.
Sheesh. What a baby.
I fear that I will hallucinate due to the fact that they don't let you eat for what seems like a week before the appointment and the starving, swirling, dizziness of it will make me believe that the story I am about to tell was only a dream, a memory from a cheesy 50's horror movie or induced from a starved brain trying to imagine fresh food...
any food.

So I must retell it now so you will know it really happened.

It was a dark and stormy night.....................just kidding.......... Here goes:

When it gets dusky outside, I do alot of evening chores like walking dogs, collecting eggs, feeding deer, pulling weeds, moving rocks, that kind of thing.
It really amounts to doing anything that keeps me outside till I can't see.

The hens always mosey towards the coop, scratching and checking stuff out in the garden, basically doing what I am doing, in chicken version, till they can't see.

I noticed Zilla scratch and then run, so I had to see what was up, because she obviously did NOT want to share !
I ran and so did Red..... after Zilla.

Low and behold it was a snake. An earth snake (which I adore and protect normally). It is about a foot long and as big around as a fresh green bean.

Zilla is trying to eat the snake while running from us while I'm trying to get my camera phone out to take a picture, not run into stuff or step on the chickens, keep Red away and tell myself this is actually happening !

Every time Zilla stops to re-adjust the snake, I move in for a picture and Red moves in to try and take the snake.

I now have to chase Red away, keep an eye on Zilla and try to take a picture cause no one will believe me.

This makes Zilla run faster, scare the snake more, which then starts wrapping itself around her head, face and neck.

The scared snake eating chicken runs even faster, cause how many times does your food become an accessory and I now have to get this under control.

Red is chased by me, into the hen house and locked up.

I run back to Zilla and start snapping pics like crazy while

Zilla relaxes, drops the snake, watches it curl into a couple of knots, pecks at it, picks it up, drops it again and now I think it needs to be rescued.

As soon as I reach in to grab it, Zilla picks it up and in 3, yes THREE gobbles the snake is inside the chicken.

I had NO IDEA !!!!

A wiggling live snake !

I have pics to prove it and my dizziness has not set in yet !

This is right before she read my mind about a rescue....and ate it.

Thanks for reading my blog !!!!!

I would welcome your comments,
your feedback, your sharing
and/or your following !!!

Monday, April 8, 2013

'I will take the egg to Mordor.......'

Easter was a fabulous event at my home, with a house full of people and apparently not enough activities.

This 'Hobbit' was created after a botched, but delicious deviled egg attempt.

Too much pickle juice,
too much paprika
and too much table chatter
meant that the egg had became a perfect canvas.

Frodo: Go back, Sam. I'm going to Mordor alone.

Sam: Of course you are. And I'm coming with you.

Good times. Good times !!!

Saturday, March 23, 2013

Criminitly ! Chickens in the Hood !

Red and Zilla (the Rhode Island Red and the Buff Orpington) have decided that the neighborhood is theirs.
A sort of chicken gang.
It began when I started letting them out at sunrise with the intent that they would leave Grace(the chicken truck chicken) alone.
Although they still look for her so they can pick on her.
They are definitely chicken thugs !
I don't know how to tell Grace to fight back !
They even chase the schnauzer !
Criminitly !

Its not like looking under every single leaf and stick for bugs OR avoiding hawks, cats and dogs OR following me around all day waiting for a treat OR just basking in the sun, isn't enough to do !
Getting up at sunrise leaves a lot of time in a day for a curious hood chicken to explore and get into trouble.
They usually stay reasonably close by the house so they can come running if I call OR happen to have their favorite chicken 'crack'- dried meal worms.
Truly they are addicted.
Truly that makes me their dealer.
But today they decided some delicious items were OUT BY THE STREET !!
Which is nowhere near their house !!
Criminitly !

I called them and they totally ignored me !
They are out of control !
I have given them too much free time !
A chickens 'job' is to lay eggs and lay eggs only, but I can't fire them and give them other chores to do so they will stay out of trouble.
What to do ?
Too many hours in a chicken day !
Criminitly !

Sooooo after an hour of rebellious street scratching they came back to the house for a rest under the azalea bushes.
But not before my dog Eva saw them and playfully chased the red one till she yelled, flapped around and scrambled for cover in the shrubbery.
I didn't stop her (the dog) either. Nope.
If the hens are going to be like wandering sheep, they need a guard dog to keep them in line.
The neighborhood is NOT theirs.
There is no chicken watch in the neighborhood.
I don't speak 'hood' chicken.
I don't even speak chicken !
I'm not Momma Dolittle !
I'm not even their mom.
It's dangerous out there !
They just won't listen !

Criminitly !

Monday, March 11, 2013

The Best Lotion.

Just wanted to share some information about the best lotion ever.
And I have tried a bazillion.
I have to wash my hands SO many times a day. Thanks to the dogs, the hens, the cats, the Wal-mart shopping cart, the laundry,
the fish ponds, the chicken coop, the vacuum, the computer keyboard, the eggs, the hens and the dogs again and did I mention all things dog and hen ??
No I don't have a phobia or paralyzing fear of germs or neurotic need to nervously rub my hands together.
ANYWAY...... I wash my hands ALOT and I found this recipe on Pinterest and I thought you should know about it.
I am on my second batch and couldn't have made it through the winter without it !!!

These are the ingredients:

Johnson Baby Lotion (any scent)
Vitamin E Cream

These are the ratios and they CAN be halved:

16 oz. baby lotion
8 oz. Vaseline
8 oz. Vitamin E Cream

Mix with a hand mixer until it looks like frosting.

Then put in your favorite container !!

It is fabulous !!
You will thank me and your skin will thank you !!!

Friday, March 8, 2013

Loosing a hen

Beautiful day.

Horrible circumstances.

We had to put down Margaret.

She was one of my original peeps rescued from a wild mama hen at my daughters country home.
My daughter rescued 4 peeps, 3 of which were roosters and had to go.
Margaret was a keeper and a sweetheart.
Sat on my feet, lap, shoulder and came running when I called.
She always got to be in the middle of the other hens when it was cold.
She had remarkable blue legs, lovely tan feathers and laid lovely light brown eggs.
She will be missed.

Monday, March 4, 2013

Too Cold?

If anyone does not see the advantage of down bedding, than I am just sad for them.

While the past week has been windy and dipping into the 20's at night I have tossed and turned worrying about my hens getting too cold..
The chicken truck chicken, Grace, sleeps all by herself (till she is hopefully comfortable snuggling with her bullying companions).
Margaret, the wild caught hen, who has become broody and grumpy chooses now of all times to sleeps by herself in the other nest box.
Red (for lack of a better name) and Zilla, the Buff Orpington sleep together. They are not the ones keeping me awake.
There is basically no snuggling for warmth.
It is just hen against cold.
Pond freezing, ground crunching, nose running cold !

I am snuggled under my down comforter and my feather/down pillows. Toasty and warm.
THIS fact is the ONLY reason I can get get any sleep at all.
My girls are COVERED with the same thing !!!

Every morning, when they are let loose from the coop, sometimes before sunrise when it is coldest, they bound out and act like it is a warm spring morning !
The wind ruffles their feathers but they will then just scratch places next to the house.
I should have known things would be ok.
Some folks have chickens WAY up north.
But these are my girls, all but one raised from a peep.
They entertain me.
They worry me.
They give me eggs.
They make me smile.
They warm my heart.