When I was eight years old, my family and I moved to a small farm. My older brother, Matt, became quite the young farmer. He drug us along with him in his many endeavors. We raised goats, horses, pigs, rabbits, guineas, ducks, and chickens.
Chickens were his main obsession for some time. By the time I was ten, we had quite a little egg selling business. He built coops and read books. He poured his heart and energy into his flock. Once, we even mixed duck eggs into a broody hen's own eggs. The results were six chicks and six duckling that thought they were siblings (amazing to watch).
In recent years, my grandpa (Poppaw John) has kept a few chickens for eggs. He has been very generous with his farm fresh, free range, large brown eggs, and has filled our skillet many times. After many years of disliking eggs (I think due to butchering so many chickens in our farm days), I have learned to once again love the golden yolks, scrambled and salted, on my plate.
Last fall Poppaw John decided to take a break from chickens. They were getting older and he would have to start over with chicks and replace them if he wanted to keep up the egg production. He just wasn't into starting the whole process over. So I had two choices. One, I could just buy good quality eggs from the store ($$$). Two, I could start again what my brother had begun so many years ago...
|And so it begins again|
As I write, the sweet sound of peeping chicks floods out from my laundry/mud room. Ten of them. They are redish brown and cute as can be. Bunny really likes peeking into the brooder. She is not so excited about touching the chicks themselves. But she will catch on eventually. The glow from the heat lamp lights up the space like a Christmas tree. The smell of pine chips brings back memories of days long past. Of the farm. Of working hard and it paying off in the end.
|Wondering what was in this thing|
(She does not say the "ck")
|Up on her tipy-toes to get a better look|
The Hubs is excited to learn and I am excited to pass down my knowledge to him. It seems like everyday one of us teaches the other something. Hopefully, between the two of us, Bunny will learn quite a bit about life, before she even has to live it for herself.
|The Hubs helping Bunny get one last look before bath time|