grace, prayer

Chick talks “Birds and Bees” A Cautionary Tale

It’s spring…kind of…and I’m thinking of the birds and the bees. We already have the birds, specifically the chickens, but we have no bees. We have fresh “free”eggs and wouldn’t it would be great to have fresh honey, too?

My husband hates bees. Hates…them! Every year the conversation between us goes like this:

“I’d like to get some bees.”

“If you got bees, who says they won’t just go next door? They sting. Why do I want anything that instinctively wants to harm me? For what?”

He had a point. (Pun intended.) So, I decided to table that discussion for next year…since currently we’re nursing our rooster back to health. (Soooo, we’re back to “just” having the birds!)

Thurston, the rooster is on my enclosed porch as he’s healing from a hawk attack. He was just doing his job to protect his ladies and BAM! He was scooped up and fought his way out of the talons of a bully chicken hawk. He’s now wearing a (custom made by moi) cone of shame to deter him from pecking himself to death.

So yesterday I went back to my second home, aka the feed store, to get medicine and food. (Just a reminder to those thinking of getting chickens for “free eggs”…there’s no such thing as “free”!) Since I knew what I needed I went directly to the order counter and paid for the goods.

“You qualify to receive 6 free baby chicks!”

“No…no…no. Oh, their so cute! I already have the heat lamp. My husband will give up his shower for another month, again. I’d just need a bag of crumbles….”

I slapped my own face and said…”NO!”
The sales lady said she understood and quickly walked away. (She basically dropped the chicks and ran!)

“I mean, I have enough to take care of right now!” (Did I just say that out loud?)

Feverishly I grabbed my supplies and exited the store. Surely someone else has had that same reaction…surely. Embarrassed, I scrambled out of that parking lot and insult to injury, my tires may have spun some gravel. (No one was harmed….that I knew.)

There’s so much to know when having chickens. Mine happen to be pets so I don’t cull them when they’re ill. I treat them. In fact, my husband almost died when he heard I’d taken Thurston to the vet…in my car. (I left the sun roof open. Gosh!)

I can’t believe I was able to walk away from then but sometimes you have to know your limits. I mean, they weren’t the kind of chickens I really liked so that helped! The saleswoman who knew me hollered as I was leaving the building.

“Next week we’re getting Buff Orpington’s!”

“Really?! I love these birds! Maybe next week.”

Did I really just say that? I was so proud I didn’t get the chicks and expressed my pleasure to the hubs in being able to walk out without a half dozen chicks. He was relieved, too. Then I told him about next week’s arrival of Buff Orpington’s and shockingly…he spoke…

“We’ll, since you’re not doing the bee hive…”.

20140325-091035.jpg

Advertisements

Chick takes Courage

“Everything you want is on the other side of fear.” – Jack Canfield

When my mother died. I was in my early twenties. She blanketed my fears. She encouraged me. She made all things pretty. If I made mistakes, she talked me through them. We were a team. But, then…she was gone.

After graduating from college I thought I’d get married like all of my friends. I didn’t.

When I finally met my soul mate, I was 33. I thought we’d have children. We couldn’t.

As life progressed, I thought we’d expand our family but it didn’t happen like I’d dreamed. We had so much love to give. Why wasn’t this happening?

I was told I was so talented. Why was my life not like the fairytales like those of my friends? I would compare myself to them…2, 3 and 4 kids. I had “nothing”, or so I thought.

I had faith in God. He says “Take courage…”. My mother always reminded me of this. Now…it had meaning. It had meaning to me. I’m taking control of my life…finally. (I’m a late learner, but I’m thankful to be able to learn!) I’m taking the courage afforded to me by my faith in God. I just had to believe in Him…and and then I asked Him.

Recently, I entered two writing competitions. I didn’t win. I entered. I took courage. (Finally, I took courage!)

I had an ailing hen. I had to induce vomiting to get the thing that was constricting her breathing out…I did it. My rooster, Thurston, was attacked by a predator. I had to bathe and attend to his wounds. I did. (I didn’t say I wasn’t shaking the entire time, but I did it.)

Without trying…without caring…without loving…without faith, what is this life?

Life may not happen as we imagined it; but isn’t it more important to have faith, hope and love? In fact, fear is actually “False Evidence Appearing Real”.

Take Courage! Live!

Do you take courage? What did you do that required courage? If not, what will you do to receive your courage and conquer your fear? You don’t have to win everything to have courage.

Take courage!

“Wait for the LORD; be strong, and let your heart take courage; wait for the LORD!”
[Psalm 27:14]

Chick Falls for Animals

Fall. How appropriate is that title for this time of year? It is beautiful in Virginia with the multicolored fall of leaves. The weather is crisp. The dogs love chasing each leaf as it floats back and forth to the ground. I love all of it.

What I didn’t love was taking my pup Ellie for emergency surgery yesterday. As I sat in the waiting room with eyes full of years, I prayed. God, please. Please let her live. Then, like a train wreck, I was transported to 20 years ago, in my mind.

It was Fall. I was in college. I was late for an exam. Driving furiously I barely saw the road, much less the “thing” I just ran over. I stopped. In my rear view mirror I saw two elderly people making their way to my car.

Slowly, I got out and looked. I’d hit a dog. A DOG?! I was horrified. Crying uncontrollably I looked up to see the elderly couple following their retractable lead…that was attached…to this dog…I just hit. (Nooooo! This cannot be happening.)

“I’m so sorry. I’m so sorry. I’m so sorry. I love dogs. I know a Vet! We’ll take her there. Just put her in my car!” They looked at me and said,”It’s o.k. We shouldn’t have let her take so much of the lead on such a busy road. She was just a pup. She’s not in any pain. She was only 9 months old. We can get another dog.” Whaaaa?

Torturing myself with tears and regret, I loaded up their pup and drove them to the Vet’s office anyway. It was awful and they couldn’t have been nicer to me…they couldn’t have been. Why? I don’t know. I can only say it was but for the grace of God, truly.

But now, it’s Fall again and 20 years later. Still tortured by this act, I cried harder as I sat in the waiting room at my Vet’s office. 20 years later, I’m still broken up about that dog AND what was happening with my Ellie dog in that operating room.

How could I not have noticed she was feeling so bad? Why didn’t I take her sooner? What kind of dog owner am I? I’d had a dog with Addison’s disease and for 3 years I took her every month for her shots. I’d been such a responsible owner.

Then, it hit me. She never acted as she was in pain. This wasn’t punishment. The Vet said if I’d been a day later, it could have been critical.

She’s still there. Still at the hospital, I went to see her. It’s one day later. She is getting the care she needs. I still pray that she will live. I pray that she’ll be back to running circles and hugging my neck with “Ellie hugs”, soon.

It’s Fall again. I love my dogs and chickens…each one of them AND I hate retractable leashes. Hate ’em.

20131025-150830.jpg