Category Archives: Rabbits

Lesson 635 – We’ve lost two members of the flock

It’s time to get this news out of the way.

We’ve lost two very prominent members of our flock.

First Simon, my beautiful painting chicken, Simon died last week. We had noticed throughout the summer that at times she seemed to be gasping for air but then every time I’d pick her up to check her out she’d be fine. At other times, she’d be lethargic one moment and then in another, she’d be up and about. She ate fine, drank water, and was active with the flock.

It’s just that something was a bit off about her.

The other morning we went to the hen house to let the chickens out and there was poor little Simon – she had died during the night.

Simon, if you recall, was our artist chicken. One day in a fit of boredom, my kids decided to use a chicken to paint a picture. Of course they chose Simon who was by far, the sweetest and most docile member of our flock. It was not unusual to find Simon in my lap when I was reading a book outside.

Feathered Fireworks

For the painting project, the kids held Simon, dipped her feet in paint and then created a work of art that was entitled “Feathered Fireworks.” The piece sold at auction for 300 dollars with the money going toward a local playground renovation fund. So basically because of Simon, kids get to continue playing.

How many chickens leave a legacy like that? Continue reading



Filed under All things chickens, Backyard Chickens, Chicken art, Death in the henhouse, Life Lessons, members of the flock, Points to ponder, Rabbits

Lesson 561 – The bunny under the fence

This is Vivian. The bunny that Addy just HAD to have last year (and which as you might recall, made me the Best. Mom. Ever.)

I don’t know the breed but I do know that she is a dwarf and at this point is full grown. She’s a sweet and loving little thing who gets first shot at the left over salad greens each night.

Our plan for this summer was to incorporate her into the hen house with the rest of the flock. Keeping a bunny in a cage has never really sat well with me. Sure we take her out to play and we have her hutch up against the house so that she can join us in watching “Cold Case” each night (we only have basic-basic cable and it’s either that or Law and Order)  but a bunny needs room to hop and grow. Continue reading


Filed under Backyard Chickens, Rabbits, The Family

Lesson 502 – A rabbit in the hen house

This is what a rabbit is supposed to look like:

Photo credit: Sue Lyons

Notice, the proud posture, the open green grass, and the happy demeanor.

This is what our rabbit: Vivian looked like this morning:

Notice the cage, the downtrodden look, and the lack of companionship. You can practically hear her scream, “I am not a number, I am a BUNNY, let me out.”

Which is why I have made another of my famous executive decisions, which for the most part usually includes getting a new animal(s), but this time it is about setting one free. Or at the very least, setting one free within an enclosed confined area. Yup, that’s right, this Spring, our rabbit is going to become a hen house bunny.

The woman who sold us Vivian said that she kept her bunnies in the hen house and while I thought it was interesting, I didn’t think I was going to do that. Afterall, I had two daughters who had BEGGED me for this bunny. They were going to play with her and take care of her and see to her every need.

But winters (even snowless winters) in New Hampshire tend to change young and impressionable minds.

It’s cold.

I don’t have any shoes on.

It’s not my turn.

In a minute.


And so while my daughters sit inside the (relatively) warm house watching reruns of Friends, the bunny sits outside in a cage wondering what all the hoop-la about life is. If life means you sit in a cage, occasionally getting a handful of food thrown your way but otherwise leaving no entertainment other than watching the sun come up over the house in the morning and then set in the back woods each evening, then maybe, just maybe, it’s not all it’s cracked up to be. Continue reading


Filed under All things chickens, Backyard Chickens, chicken care, Rabbits

Lesson 356 – Best mom ever

Last Friday night I went shopping with my daughters Addy and Emma. Addy wanted to buy a pack of press-on fingernails “It says they stay on for 24 hours” she whined to me when I said they would fall off during swim practice (which she has every day). Nope and still nope was my reply.

Yeah I know, I’m a rotten mom.

Then early Saturday morning at a yard sale Emma spotted a nifty gun that spat out Maltese choke-able sized balls. Absolutely not I said when she started pulling out her quarters. Wah – she puffed and went back to the car to sit in the back seat her arms folded across her chest.

Yeah, yeah, got it. I stink as a mom.

Then we went to the local chicken swap and I started talking to the breeder from whom we had gotten our lovely seabright hen: Isabelle and our chicken-chicken Morgane. Along with some chickens (which we didn’t get) she also had bunnies for sale.

Oh God, no. No bunnies.

Can I hold one asked Addy? Sure go ahead but there’s no way I’m going home with a bunny so don’t even ask. She picked up the bunny and literally squealed with delight.

Pleeeeeeeeeeease? She said making one or two vague promises like I’ll do the dishes everyday for the rest of my life.

Nope. Absolutely not. We. Do. Not. Need. A. Bunny. We have 10 newborn chicks at home remember? If you glued long ears on our dogs they would pretty much look like rabbits, just play with them. Continue reading


Filed under All things local, Inspiration, Life Lessons, Rabbits, Teaching kids