I'm pretty sure as I lived in the city and sat in my solidly built 1940's cape cod house and dreamed about living on a farm everything was perfectly idyllic. My mind could only imagine the sweet breeze of a gorgeous summers day sending the smell of lavender and basil across my path. I would find myself strolling down walkways of fruit trees on my way to harvest a bountiful dinner salad with tomatoes, cucumbers, spinach, and basil. Oh how I LOVE basil, possibly my favorite herb, because its pungent smell gives praise to olive oil, bread, and cheese. Prepare yourselves for my many food tangents with recipes in future posts and when you're looking for scientific growing methods and spread sheets Ted will NEVER disappoint. Dreaming is only one of the great complements bonding Ted & I to this farm. The other is chicken poop.
You might be laughing, but I'm not kidding. Something powerful takes over a partnership when poop is involved. We become united caregivers for the greater purpose and love of another living thing. Think about the first time you changed a diaper for your child, both parents so unsure with delicate care. But the ease of changing diapers shifts after you start feeding your baby real food. Farm animals provide fresh sustenance like milk, meat, and eggs, and we deal with the mess for the love of life.
Our rooster, now affectionately known as John Wayne, almost became chicken soup. He gave the boys a run and a peck, and another behind their back. All the men were playing some sort of game to see who was in charge while I was watching from the sidelines amused. In true John Wayne fashion, with courage, tenacity, and honor he defended his 20 ladies from a wild mad beastly chicken chaser, our 7 month old puppy Clover, redeeming a place of safety in the hearts of my guys. It's funny how a little spilled blood can fix a gentlemen's perspective.
Finding eggs daily in our nest boxes is a rewarding gift that disguises the mess and helps move us forward to dream bigger. We are learning to embrace the cycle of water, feed, straw and do it again... and then once more. Humor finds its home in our love of the dirty life when, someone who shall remain nameless, forgets the egg basket and thinks pockets are a perfectly good substitution, in which most cases I agree. But it then becomes most important to remember the eggs are in the pocket or you will come to regret the crunchy slime, not once, but twice. Today we choose to be thankful for the imperfections that are bonding us to the farm and the stories we have to share for the love of chickens.