By Jody Worsham
Wednesday, July 10, 2013
Wring Your Own ....!
By Jody Worsham
All rights reserved for an egg-sorcist
When Dr. Hubby mentioned that he would like to raise a few chickens, I didn’t think anything about it. He has these ideas that pop into his head occasionally. I should have known after 49 years that his ideas pop like popcorn and somehow expand exponentially.
We started with twelve little yellow fluff balls in a cardboard box in the barn. The cute little yellow fluff balls soon outgrew the cardboard box and the pen hubby had rigged up temporarily and turned into twelve white feathered noisy pooping, smelly pullets.
“Not a problem. I’ll just build them a pen down where the old barn used to be. We are going to need a place for the kids' show chickens anyway” says Dr. Hubby.
What followed is now referred to as the Trump Condos for Chickens or the Government Economic Term Stimulus Tentative Under Planned Interactive Development. I just refer to it as G.E.T. S.T.U.P.I.D. In hindsight, I probably could have gotten a government grant to determine which came first: The Chicken or the Egg. But no matter, that was a moot question.
Actually the shed, the chain link fence, the recycled old patio doors, the unused French doors, the ceiling fan for circulation, the water-ers, the chicken feeders, plumbing and electricity, a door for easy access, covered porch for the John Deere Gator bought to haul the chicken feed, and shavings came first. But to keep the stimulus stimulating, more chicks had to be bought so there would be a continuous supply of eggs…of which I had yet to see one of…..egg I mean.
We are now up to 24 chicks in various stages of development. The eleven-year-old picked out her favorite and named it “Sweet Thing”. After a few more weeks when the first birds were discovering their voices, Sweet Thing had to be renamed Sweet Boy. Now we have 23 chickens and one rooster. Dr. Hubby is now concerned that the older birds are pecking on the younger birds so….there is an addition to the Trump Chicken Condos.
“Well, when the show chickens get here, we are going to have to have a separate place to keep the broilers away from the layers.” I had a better solution. KFC came to mind.
With the added room, more chicks arrived because…I don’t know why. He’s a man who can’t resist a sale, auction or anything homeless. We are now at 32 birds and one rooster and awaiting the arrival of 50 show chickens.
After four months and an additional 500 square feet of condo living, the first eggs arrived. It was very educational. Our eight-year-old has, after much observation, deduced that it takes all day to make an egg. “First you have to get the yoke in it; then make the shell and add a little dab of protein.” I think he has mixed up farm life and the cooking network. Our eleven-year-old was a bit more astute. “Chickens don’t lay eggs before 10:00. It is now 11:00. Do you think chickens can tell time?”
With a rooster in the flock, the eight-year-old got a lesson in sex egg-ucation early on. Sweet Boy is anything but sweet. If you walk into the chicken condo carrying anything in your hand like a bucket, he will attack. If you walk in empty handed, he rushes up to you and wants to be petted. He has also developed a powerful set of lungs as our neighbors down the road will verify.
As promised, egg production began to increase. At first we got two or three eggs per day. Eggs sunny side up. Then we began to get half dozen a day. Scrambled eggs. French Toast. Omelets. A dozen eggs a day. Egg salad. Quiche. Boiled eggs. Egg custard. 18 eggs per day. Egg sandwiches. Eggs Benedict. EGGS FOR SALE! I even pushed for our church to declare an Egg-umenical Sunday. I lobbied for Egg-stra school days. I argued for a yard sale of Egg-normous size. I nagged for an Egg-ercise program at the gym. Nothing.
We can’t afford any more eggs. Between the chicken feed, the egg cartons, the now egg allergy shots, it is costing us to have chickens. I am waiting for the old hens to shut down. Then I’ll add:
FRESH CHICKENS FOR SALE! Wring Your Own and Take Her Home!
And I am not egg-aggerating!