Baby Chicks and This and That

DUN DUN DUN: this happened this week:

There are four: Names are Cheerio, Truffle, Muffin, and Holly/Dot (name is Holly… we keep calling her Dot… we’ll see how it shakes out)

We stood in line at the feed store at 6:45am, they open at 7:30, and we were probably 4th in line. Us, a bunch of older farm ladies (one of which had a lamb on a leash), another suburban mom like us with her son, and a nice Menonite lady. By the time they opened the line was 15-20 people. We got our chicks quickly and if that shipment of 700 chicks lasted an hour I would be surprised. We got four but many of the farm folk were getting 15+ at a time.

Here’s the thing. I had books on backyard chickens before my middle daughter was born! She just turned 11! And freaking now that we have them, mostly as an FFA type project for the children, I read this shit is a trend! THAT BACKYARD CHICKENS ARE… POPULAR?! Oh no.


SIGH. Oh well. I still dislike Starbucks, if that counts for anything.

Maybe we’ll do this with them if we can find some cupcake liners to distract me from my bruised ego:

Where’s Degas when you need him?

It may be a trend but I stand behind this chicken decision as well thought out on my part- it really was. And besides… fluffy chicken butts that poop breakfast? What more could you want! (Don’t read up on the cloaca unless you want to have a bad time.)

And yet, fun and games as it all is, unfortunately one of our chicks (my chick, in fact: Truffle) may turn out to be a rooster. It’s wing feathers are coming in slower. It’s comb is just slightly larger. These were SUPPOSED to be all female pullets that we bought, but the margin of error on sexing day old chicks ranges between 3-10%. I’m watching it closely… but I kinda feel like it’s watching me back too. Like this:

Truffle the Destroyer

Oh well. We’ll either find a nice home for him (if the chick isn’t just going through that awkward tomboy phase… which if it is I totally GET you, chicken) or eat him when society collapses. HAHA IT’S FUNNY BECAUSE IT MIGHT HAPPEN.

Speaking of societal collapse… I’m doing well with it this week. Honestly what can I do but take it day by day over here? This is not denial, just to clarify. The incredulity of it all is there, floating on the surface of my being like oil on water. I have now accepted this state of existence and figure it will take being shaken vigorously to make an emulsion outta me about the pandemic and for reality to actually sink in and stay that way.

Do NOT take this to mean I don’t take it seriously! I do! We social distance! We don’t go out! We got god damn chickens! I’m playing Chopped for dinner instead of running to the store for one missing ingredient like I used to! We’re using the bottles at the back of the liquor cabinet instead of buying new ones! I’ve looked up how to sew masks! WE WASH HANDS!

But there it all floats up on the surface- the pandemic, covering all surfaces of my life but not sinking in yet. How much of that is just my nature? How much is it something I should work on? Perhaps- and I hope with every fiber of my being that this is true- perhaps I’m just the type of person that could walk up the gallows with a quip on my lips for the executioner and this is just how I am? Perhaps… perhaps humor and just rolling with whatever I have to deal with are coping mechanisms that served me well in the recesses of my past? Perhaps if you get a cat thrown in the bath with you as a young kid you are ALWAYS kinda expecting life to do it to you again? Hell if I know.

Or could also be this: this shit hasn’t even started yet and I’m like a Cornish fish-wife who is spending the last weekend before the Blitz picnicking on the beach and saying how things aren’t so bad after all, you know?

I do get flashes of it though, don’t think it’s all me just drifting blithely through the house and yards. One of my husband’s favorite things about spring breaks and summers is the game Fun With Facial Hair. And frankly- let the dude have his fun! But this past week I did have to ask him to shave the Fu Manchu because it made him look like he was frowning all the time and it was too much to add to the weight of: ~gestures at whole world~ to catch him out of the corner of my eye and think he was frowning. He shaved for me. If that isn’t love I don’t know what is!

And last week I had this chest feel- this tightness. I got the whole family together for a lunchtime walk because I couldn’t figure out what was causing the anxiety- I really couldn’t. You know, aside from: ~gestures at whole world~. That feeling stuck around most of the day, dissipated, and then hasn’t come back yet. Yet. I will cross that bridge when and if we get there again. Sometimes sleep is elusive. Sometimes it’s not.

Day by day. It’s a mantra. It COULD be a good thing and show I’m staying in the moment. It COULD be a bad thing and be a symptom of denial. I guess we’ll find out, now won’t we?

In other news it’s absolutely POURING right now, and has been for a day or so. And the forecast has it doing the same for the next 8 days too. Which is a BUMMER, because it’ll cause an early end to the spring rose, larkspur and poppy thing we got going over here.

IMG_1704 3
I should have picked more flowers before the rain started, dammit

But it is a good thing because we can also always use the rain and it’ll be great for the new plants that are in.

I do feel bad for our feathered friends having to deal with all this rain though… no not the chickens-they live in a bedroom in a brooder cage right now. I’m talking about our other ones.

We have a pair of Yellow Crowned Night Herons that nest in the pecan trees behind our house each spring. This year it looks like 2 more pairs may have joined them, so I think some of their adult nestlings have come back with them.

Kinda hard to see, but we LOVE THEM

They are SO cool. We kept looking in the trees these past weeks because we know they get back right around when the pecan’s leaf out, and that happened with still no night herons. And THEN… we were lucky enough to be sitting outside when they came back this last week! Our Friends! Welcome home!

We’re attached to them, I think you can tell.

In other news, well. We’re taking walks? Is that news? It amounts to it around these parts, I guess.  The older girls cracked up when we were on a walk recently and they saw the cat below, enjoying his coffee.

Those. Whiskers!

The world can’t be all going to hell right? Not if cats are still enjoying their coffee? There is good to be had still, I think is the message. I think it is.

3 thoughts on “Baby Chicks and This and That

  1. LOL! I love the cat enjoying his coffee. As for the rest, Lauren, I think you’re going through all the crests and troughs of the sea that we’re all floundering on. Try not to worry. Just take it a day at a time and do what you feel is right at the time. That’s all any of us can do. You’re already taking precautions and planning ahead, but beyond that, who knows what the future will bring. There’s a fine line between being prepared – thinking ahead – and being paranoid to the point it will make you ill.Sounds to me as if you’re doing all the right things to deal with this covid disaster, and trying to hang onto normality at the same time. Good luck with the chicks, I remember what happened to our chicks who turned out to be “boy chicks.” They became Sunday dinner and were very much appreciated.

    1. Appreciate the reassurance! And now that you mention it, Coq au Vin is a favorite- heck I even have egg noddles to serve it on -and it IS traditionally made with a rooster…

Comments are closed.