We have had record setting cold this last week or two. The kids don’t even want to go outside to play. As the snow slowly melts it is not much better because I have 2 ice cold rivers, and 3-6″ of standing water/ice in the back yard due to drainage issues through the unmelted snow. Through all of this we have sadly neglected our poor chickens. They don’t like walking in the snow, and their coop is intentionally drafty to help with ventilation. They ran out of food, their treats kept freezing, and keeping unfrozen water for them had been neglected as well. I am simply amazed they are all even alive!
(I can’t believe I’m saying this, but I’ve even wondered if it would be better if some of them did die so the kids would learn they need to do their chores no matter what the weather.)
Who has a place where they just always feel calm and happy? Where is it? I have a friend who is always calm and happy under a tree- any tree. I have a “new” and unexpected place. Sitting in my yard, watching my chickens. Even just feeding them and watching brings an intense calm. I think it is because they live a simpler, unassuming, unstressed life that is full of food, friends, and knowing they will be taken care of. We got 3 new hens this week. There is a little bit of stress and work involved in integrating them to our current flock, but we are so happy to have more “friends” living outside. Where is your peaceful place?
Today we are celebrating the 24th of July. Duh – that’s the date. Actually in Utah it is more like the state day where we celebrate the pioneers who crossed the plains and settled in the Salt Lake Valley.
In honor of their sacrifices and all they went through to settle the new frontier I thought I’d find and share some earth shattering story of hope and faith. I started reading a few of the journals that were kept on the trail. Rather than some incredible story, I found a funny, everyday trivia to share.
As these wagon trains crossed the plains, they took inventories of supplies and people. We often ask ourselves what we would take if we had to cross the plains with just a wagon – or worse hand cart only, and needing to account for the weight of everything we took. What I didn’t realize was that they took their entire household. I don’t mean just their wives and children, I mean also their cats, dogs, chickens, etc. One wagon train alone took 81 chickens! Almost 1 chicken for every two people! No one bothered to put those in the pictures.
As a “modern” household who has chickens, I have a new appreciation for what it required to take a household full of chickens across the plains! Wow! I guess they really wanted those eggs. I enjoy them, but I’ve never had to look at my small flock for food. Totally different mindset. Just a good reminder of the luxuries we enjoy. Nothing miraculous, just some fun trivia!