The Great Chicken Massacre of 2015

Sigh.  Yesterday was a really hard day.  I didn’t share the tragic event (not sarcasm) because I wasn’t sure if it was something to share.  But it happened and it sucked and it relates to my circle of life posting and to my life as a parent.

We shall refer to this event as The Great Chicken Massacre of 2015.  (Great as in large and not awesome.)

Yesterday morning I went out to open up our chicken coop and to let our eight chickens out for their day.  It was pretty quiet.  That’s unusual.  I don’t get up as early as chickens do and they are usually not happy about that.  I opened the door and only two flew out – Raptor and Savage.  (Yes, they all have names courtesy of the children)

It took me a minute to figure out what the hell had happened.  I even poked one of the chickens to wake it up.  Chickens don’t lay down to sleep.  Sometimes we just don’t want to believe what we are seeing.  Two alive.  Two dead.  Two missing.  Two injured beyond the possibility of recovery.

I hate raccoons.  I understand the whole circle of life thing.  I understand that chickens will be chickens and raccoons just gotta be raccoons.  I hate them.  I’ll never understand killing for killing sake.  Just because.  Not for hunger.  Not out of need.  Just because you can.

By the way, the pacifist in me was quashed by the maternal, protective instinct in me.  Said raccoon has gone wherever dead raccoons go.  Around here it’s an open field away from the house where he can become part of the freaking circle of life and be buzzard breakfast.

The coop has been fortified.  Chickens have short memories.  The surviving two are no longer looking for the rest of the flock.

And, after having to explain the whole mess to my twelve year old who spends time reading to, talking to and hanging out with her birds, we ended up with 15 chicks.  In the house.  At the beginning of winter.  Chicks who won’t be able to go outside to live for months.  Chicks that chirp – all the time.  Chicks that eat all the time.  Chicks that poop even more than they chirp and eat.  Chicks that have to be under a warming light that warms up said poop.  Probably sufficient explanation of the insanity of getting chicks in November.

They are really, really cute though.  The naming process has begun. I have no idea how the kids can tell them apart to know which is which.  Chickens aren’t very good at responding to their name when called so it’s probably a mute point.  Come to think of it, kids aren’t very good at responding to their names and we name them.

On the decluttering front for today:

  1. 3 shirts that do nothing to make me look like a supermodel.  (I’m aware that none of my shirts have the ability to make that happen, but these three are serious fails)
  2. an inflatable cowboy costume that includes a horse that you appear to be riding on.  No explanation for the declutter really needed.
  3. a sweater that has more pills than my medicine cabinet
  4. a fitted sheet.  I already have two sets and although I can fold a fitted sheet (thanks Mom), I don’t want to so I just wash ’em and put them right back on
  5. an oscillating fan that doesn’t oscillate.  It just sits in one place and clicks incessantly as it tries to move.  Annoying to say the least.

As I read back over this list, I wonder why I ever kept these things to begin with.  Sometimes I have no words.

And if you are better at math than I am – 6 chickens gone and 15 coming in means that I actually now have more today than yesterday.  I’m coming to realize that the numbers aren’t so important.  It’s having only what you need and want that counts.


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