A few years ago, thanks in part to a gift from my Mom, who purchased for me a subscription to Mary Janes Farms magazine (www.MaryJanesFarm.org), I began daydreaming about having a little flock of back yard chickens. We didn’t plan to stay in a neighborhood for so many years. A few of our children are more than half way to adulthood, our family has almost doubled in size and here we are. We dream of a farm and a wood, of space, a milk goat….perhaps someday. But somewhere along the way I have grown to love my “bit o’earth” small though it be.
When Blue-eyes saw that this was my earnest desire, to care for and raise some nice chickens, he employed the help of our sons and designed and built me the dream chicken tractor. All out of recycled materials, I might add. The only things he spent money on were a few pieces of hardware and the paint. The frame he made from an old TV satellite. I must say I was totally impressed and smitten with his resourcefulness and ingenuity.
My chickens enjoy a attachable enclosed yard. We have been moving them all around the back yard to help our grass be rich and green this summer. They are happy to graze and find new yummy bugs. Once the nicer weather is here to stay we will keep them in a more out of the way area so the kids can go barefoot. “Earthing”, we’re all about it!
The nineteenth century educator, Charlotte Mason, who’s philosophies I greatly uphold, teaches that every child should have “something to love, something to do and something to think about” each day. It is good for our children to have the responsibility of caring for God’s creatures. I love to go out in the morning with my man-child and move the cage to a fresher spot. I love to watch my little girls feed them clippings and vegetable scraps. And whatever could be better that looking for and finding a nice warm egg? Smooth and brown and carefully carrying it into mama, who always says,”Oh, how wonderful, an egg!” Then she cooks it just right and you eat it on toast.
Best of all, my chickens have opened my eyes and heart to the idea of “city or urban farming”.When I am outside working in my gardens or enjoying a cup of coffee and I hear their pretty, contented chicken noises I am reminded of a couple of things. First of all, I know that no matter how slowly, my dreams are coming true. The original dream has changed some but the core of it all is already a reality. My precious Blue-eyed husband loves me and believes in me and my kids are growing into fine young folks. The other thing is that even if my dream farm is always only a dream and I never have more than this, I am no less happy.