A light drizzle is surrounding me as I wander through the gardens cutting flowers to put in the farmstand. It is sunrise, only the sun isn’t shining. The humidity seems high and the gnats are horrible and the mosquitoes are biting. I’m hot and my body heat is steaming up my glasses so that I can’t see. I couldn’t be happier. Birds are busily going about their morning routines, the chickens are still in the coops, protesting loudly that they want out. A large red-tailed hawk swooped down behind the big hen house and went after a nest of Robins. The tranquil bliss was brought to an end. The hawk has been hanging around here for about a week. Most disturbing to our little piece of paradise.
My heart is humbled and appreciative of you. An amazing group of strong, smart, caring women came to this place and offered words of wisdom and kindness in response to my last post. Each and every one of you made a difference. You touched a place in my heart and helped my soul feel cared for. I know that there isn’t a switch that can be turned to instantly heal my hurts. It will take time and hard work, I’m trying to do the work and move on.
It is time for me to once again, re-write my life and life goals.
So, chapter by chapter I will write a new life.
I heard recently something along the lines that a good book, captivates, teaches, supplies mystery and makes the reader want to keep reading. I think that fits what my goals moving forward in my life need to be.
Today I’d like to share a little chicken story. A mother’s tale for this day of celebrating mom. A good, sweet story about determination and an abundance of love, with a happy ending.
Several weeks ago Star and then her sister Luna went broody, I moved them to a separate area, to isolate them from the other chickens, mostly so the other hens wouldn’t keep adding eggs to their stash. A week later, Little Friend went broody, so I moved her to the same area. Luna hatched 8 eggs and then Star hatched two. Little Friend was sitting on a whopping 13 eggs.
The other moms and their chicks starting moving about the enclosed area after a few days. Little Friend sat up in her crib on her mountain of eggs, watching the other moms with their chicks, waiting so patiently for her turn. Her 21 days came and went. I finally came to the conclusion her eggs were never going to hatch, they were either not fertile or they simply didn’t develop for whatever reason.
Little Friend sat there watching those little chicks and she started talking to them, finally, it got to be too much for her and she jumped off her eggs and tried to chicken nap a few of those chicks. Star would have none of that. Luna was a little more patient and understanding. Little Friend would alternate between getting back up on her bad eggs and trying to nap a few of the other chicks.
After a few days of witnessing the stress that Little Friend was under, Mr. Cottage came home one day with a 6-pack of chicks from the feed supply store.
He carefully placed the chicks one by one with Little Friend. It didn’t go over very well to say the least. She screamed and tried to fling the little babies away. She didn’t want those babies, she wanted the babies that were already here she had fallen in love with them.
I took Little Friend off her eggs and got rid of them. I fixed up a nice little area for her and brought those new chicks to her, hoping that she would warm up to them. She was horrible to them, and I was so afraid she would hurt them. She eventually left the new chicks went over to Luna, wiggling her way up under Luna so she could get to Luna’s chicks. Much to my complete surprise, Luna let her do this. For four days Little Friend methodically worked on taking over Luna’s chicks. The 6 pack of new chicks remained motherless and scared to death of Little Friend and the other two hens.
It would seem that Luna was allowing Little Friend to co-parent her chicks. Our hearts were sad for the little six-pack. On day four something changed. Little Friend decided that maybe those new little chicks were ok after all, and that maybe she would take them, along with Luna’s. Little Friend, wanted all the chicks. The 6-pack got over being afraid of her and they finally had a mom and Little Friend had chicks of her own.
For the next two weeks, Luna, Star and Little Friend, raised their chicks. Although Star wanted nothing to do with Little Friend helping with her chicks and a few fights broke out between them, Little Friend persisted on wanting to mom all the chicks. After three weeks, Star said she had enough of the whole thing and abandoned her chicks and left that area. The following week, Luna decided she too had enough parenting and Little Friend was left with all 16 chicks. Little Friend was completely delighted.
The chicks are now old enough, they could/should be on their own. Little Friend continues to mother them and shows no sign of letting go of the reigns.
They lived happily ever after, amen.
Wishing you all a Happy Mother’s Day.
That’s all for today.