I am convinced that it must have been a Beatrix Potter book that sparked my love of country life. The beautiful pictures she drew had a way of capturing the best part of farm life. The animals always look so nice and clean, and there was hardly ever a sight of mud. The whimsy of it all had a way of letting your imagination run wild. I can remember trying to look for little squirrel homes with my mom one day while walking to the bus stop. I fully believed they had full kitchens and baths somehow in those trees, and always a stocked pantry.
One thing I did not take into account about farm life, would have to be the hard decisions one has to make. Last night I finally settled something I had been wrestling with for sometime. I have two chicken coops, with two completely different flocks. One coop is wonderful, with its spacious interior and large fenced in ranging area. The other coop is adorable, but with it being situated at the bottom of a hill, it has become quite unpleasant. With all of this rain we have been having the poor chickens have basically been swimming in mud. Now, the other coop is plenty big enough to hold all of my chickens, but if I was to combine them like that, I would have to "get rid" of a certain rooster. One that we have had for a couple of years. Sure he is as mean as a snake. But he does his job well at protecting his ladies. He has ran off several neighborhood dogs and even a few children. :-o We had to "get rid" of another rooster last week, but we hadn't had him very long and you could tell his hens did not appreciate him!! So, that was kind of a no brainer. But this guy was well loved by his ladies. After thinking it over and over, I decided they would probably like the upgraded living standards over keeping their Man. Even though I don't understand that, for I would live in a tent if I had to choose between a nice house or my Sweet Man...it did seem like the best thing for the chickens though.
He was "taken care of" by Sweet Man, and the Australorps had their wings clipped so they could join the new flock. I would say it was rather chaotic. We had to accomplish this all pretty much in the dark, for this is the best time to catch a chicken you know. I was surprised at how scared we both were of this job. These chickens are so much bigger than our other ones, and we were both covered in sweat and mud, (and perhaps a little poo) by the time we were done.
Even though our farm doesn't quite look like the ones depicted in Potter's work, I wouldn't trade it for anything! Thank God I'm a country girl!!