(an example of a chicken with feathered legs and feet)
This past spring I caught a bad case of Chicken Fever. Not to be confused with bird flue, Chicken Fever causes its victim, usually already a chicken owner, to desperately desire more chickens. One friend, eager to aide me in my distress, told me that her
neighbor, an Amish farmer, would be happy to hatch some eggs for me for
The price was right, but the
timing did nothing to satisfy my urgent need.
It would take about a month for the eggs to hatch, then it would be
another four months before the hens started laying. Deep in the throes of fever as I was,
I couldn’t possibly wait that long.
A few days later we found a flock of twelve laying hens for sale and within a week they were ours. My Chicken Fever broke as I faced the demands of the new flock, but in the early days of recovery I still sent a secret text to my friend who knows the Amish
“I still want some chicks,” I typed.
“How many?” she asked.
“Four or five?” I suggested.
That was back in May.
Time passed. We lost the matriarch of our flock to a predator and our baby Polish hens grew up. Then one day last week, my friend pulled
into our driveway and popped open the trunk of her SUV. I ran out of the Little House like a child on
Christmas morning as she lifted a small cage to the ground.
I was happy to see three white birds. Then, as I walked closer, I got a better
look. “They’re the chickens with pants!”
Inside the cage, three petite, fluffy white birds walked in
circles. Each had feathers running down
their legs, sticking out on either side, giving them the appearance of wearing cowboy chaps.
I carried the cage
down to our smaller coop and lifted the hens out one-by-one. Their feathers were soft as silk and they
rested gently in my hands. When the kids got home that day, I surprised them as they
came off the bus, holding a white chicken in my arms. “They’re the ones with pants!” I proclaimed
and we oohed and aahed over them.
I had no idea what kind of chickens we might get from the anonymous Amish farmer, but I never expected these fancy girls. Now we have a total of seventeen hens and one rooster roaming the yard.
New things around the farm are pretty common – new pets, new plants, new equipment and work to be done, but this week I also have some big writing news to share with you. First, I’m starting a monthly newsletter which will contain exclusive content (essays and poems not appearing here on the blog), links to great content around the web and information about upcoming resources and events.
And the second piece of news is even bigger and more exciting . . . but you’ll have to sign up for my newsletter to be one of the first to find out more. Thanks for being part of the #SmallWonder community!
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