I’ve got a big surprise.
When Dick, the man who had given me Violet, found out about what happened to her (I still cringe when I think of that horrific episode), he offered me a new chick. “Far be it for me,” he said, “to not try and fix a broken heart.”
I was moved beyond words. Still feeling guilty about what happened to Violet, Dick not only voiced confidence in me as a chicken owner but he also assured me in his words-of-wisdom way that “things happen.”
“The cinder block thing, it didn’t happen in the last five years and it might not happen again in the next 5 years. Sometimes things just happen.”
On Sunday, I and two of my kids got into our car and made the 2 hour trip down to Dick’s house where we got a tour of his garden, hot house (where he grows plants to share in a group called Gardenswap – gardenswap.org where people share plants with each other) and of course, his flock.
Dick will be 78 in about 2 weeks and this guy could run races around just about anyone (including myself.) He keeps himself busy for the simple reason that that’s the way he likes to live his life.
We were able to see the two Guinea hens I had brought down a few months earlier but quite frankly they had blended so well into the new Guinea flock that I honestly couldn’t tell which were which.
Then we went down to the basement where Dick had his Guinea and Maran nursery.
One brooder held Guinea chicks impossible to count for their frenetic movement.
While another one held Maran chicks, some older, some younger, all stunning.
We talked about ways to try and determine the sex of chicks. Dick looks at hackles and aprons on the older chicks and wing feathers along with feet feathers on the younger chicks to make his determination. I tried the neck feather technique that I had talked about last week but we didn’t get good results, all of the neck feathers looked rounded to us.
When it came time to leave, hugs and handshakes were shared and this package was loaded into our car for the trip back to New Hampshire.
Allow me be the first to introduce Mrs. Bucket (the darker Black Copper Maran) and Josephine (the grey Blue Maran.) We’ve continued with the Charlie and the Chocolate factory theme in case you didn’t realize. Two very adorable chicks born within a day of each other and whom have already won our hearts.
We have babies in the house, once again, which means, of course, that I’ll be having many, many more stories to tell.
Here we go again.
Wendy Thomas writes about the lessons learned while raising children and chickens in New Hampshire. Contact her at Wendy@SimpleThrift.com
Also, join me on Facebook to find out more about the flock (children and chickens) and see some pretty funny chicken jokes, photos of tiny houses, and even a recipe or two.