Every time you feel in God's creatures something pleasing and attractive, do not let your attention be arrested by them alone, but, passing them by, transfer your thought to God and say: "O my God, if Thy creations are so full of beauty, delight and joy, how infinitely more full of beauty, delight and joy art Thou Thyself, Creator of all!
- Nicodemus of the Holy Mountain

You can’t get to joy by making everything perfect. You can only get there by seeing in every imperfection all that’s joy.
-Ann Voscamp

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Ho Hum...

I really don't have too much to say right now, but thought I'd post before we head south. We'll soon be off to the cities for a home school conference. I get to spend two whole days with my sister, minus the men, children, and pets! I'm looking forward to the time with her, and the great information and ideas I'll surely receive at the conference. I know, however, that I am going to miss my family a lot. It's funny that as much as I might need a break from my normal life sometimes, I'm never really fully away, and never fully immersed in whatever I'm doing. There's a huge part of me that's still busy being Mom. I wonder, will it be like this forever? When they're all grown and have flown the coop...
Well, that's as far as that's going to go right now, because I'm tearing up at the thought of them all grown - even though right now they're being SO LOUD I'll be surprised if you can't hear it when you read this, and one of them just dropped a frosted graham cracker on the floor icing down and then proceeded to eat it.

Today was a pretty good day! I'm trying really hard to get 3 good school days in before the conference, and still have enough laundry done and not come home to a house that looks like it's been through a tornado. So far, part success. Schooled all the kids in math, reading and grammar. Listened to my 7 year old do a beautiful job reading aloud to me. That's one of the most rewarding things about homeschooling for me. I love it when they learn to read! Got some laundry done and cleaned the kitchen. However, I have 5 baskets of laundry in the living room that seriously need putting away, only they've been there so long they're probably in need of washing again. I did have to re-wash the basket of towels that the dog decided to use as a bed. :(

Question for Mama Pea's Mr. and Chicken Mama: What do you do when a hen is being "over loved" by the rooster? She has no feathers on the back of her neck or her lower back, poor girl.

Oh, and one last thing. This one's a prayer request of sorts. Today, Molly fell off her horse during her lesson. She hit her nose on the ground, and somehow also her back, just above her hiney and to the side. She's a tough girl and doing fine other than some bruising, but I'll tell ya, it's really a struggle for me not to be afraid for her. I appreciate your prayers for her safety and quick healing of the bruises. Thanks!

Please pray for me, too, come to think of it! I'm feeling a little...or rather a LOT stressed right now, with all the stuff that's been going on. Lots of good stuff, but too much of it!


  1. Do you have too many roosters in your flock that find this comely little (nearly naked) hen too enticing? The ratio should be somewhere around 1 rooster to 8 hens.

    If your ratio is okay, you may have to teach this particular hen some judo moves to ward off over-amorous roosters.

  2. Actually, it isn't. We have 5 hens and 2 roosters. I think the beautiful but agressive Sinbad may have to go. :( Thanks a lot for your expert advice!

  3. You're very welcome, Patty. If you don't have a good relocation home for Sinbad, don't forget that roosters make good stew meat, too. I did a two of the "old boys" a couple of weeks ago, and hubby says it's the best chicken meat he's ever tasted! Plus they have a lot more meat on them than the hens.

  4. I am seriously considering that, Mama Pea! Probably on Tuesday. Any cooking tips for me? I'd love to hear how you got it tender enough!

  5. Early of a day, I put my stewing hens/roosters into my biggest pot (sometimes I get two pots going at once) and add cold water up to within a couple inches of the top. (Lots of water 'cause this ends up as wonderful broth which I obviously save and use.) Then while the water and chicken pieces are heating up, I chunk up carrots, celery and onions to toss in. Add a sprinkle of whatever herbs you like . . . parsley, tarragon, sage, rosemary, etc. I think this adds a little flavor to the meat but mostly adds to the broth.

    Then I cook over a really low flame all day. Take off at night and either refrigerate or put out on back unheated porch. Next day, I heat it up first thing in morning and let it go all day again. So I get in two good day's of stewing before the meat is done. It should be falling off the bone by then and is easy to separate all the meat you want to keep.

    Maybe I should do a pictorial blog post next time I stew some chickens. So much easier to get the picture with . . . uh, pictures!

  6. Thanks a lot! I will most likely begin tomorrow AM. I'm not home right now, but I think that Sinbad met his noble end this afternoon. Perhaps this will change my mind about eating our older chickens!

  7. Hey, I just got around to reading this now.

    Some people make and/or buy little leather (or some other strong material) jackets to strap on to an "over-loved" (I love that description!) hen. I've never gone to this extreme, however. There are lots of patterns on the Net, tho, if you ever wanted to try it.

    Another concern is that once a hen has lost a good portion of her feathers, she's prime for pecking once the pin feathers start re-growing. Those pin feathers have a lot of blood & nutrients in them, and the other chickens see that and say, "Yummm!" and start pecking THOSE out! It's a vicious cycle, once a hen has a bare back or head. If that were to happen, your best bet would be to separate her from the rest of the flock until her feathers have grown back in a substantial amount.

    Wouldn't be bad to keep her near the other chickens, too (maybe just wire between them) because if she is reintroduced as a new stranger to the flock (if they've forgotten her), she'll have to (re)establish herself in . . . you guessed it . . . the pecking order!

    But, Mama Pea is also totally correct in saying that prevention is the best medicine here: keep an eye on your hen to rooster ratio.

    Now, aren't you glad you asked?! ;p

  8. Hi Chicken Mama! I'm SO glad I asked! I never knew that was the time and reason they would start to pick on her. I knew it was possible though. I'm so happy to have learned why/when it is most likely to happen! I'll definitely keep an eye on that situation. So happy to hear from you!