Monday, August 10, 2009

Mom, Can We Keep Talking About Chickens?


I've been reading a book called Real Food What To Eat and Why by Nina Planck. The book has led to several interesting discussions between Jon and I. While in San Antonio this past week (post and pics to come) Jenny and I talked about our desires to have a chicken coop in the backyard for eggs. We went to eat this past Saturday with my mom and the kids and ended up talking about raising chickens. Since the topic was fresh on the mind from the conversation in San Antonio, I asked mom how many chickens a family would need to provide fresh eggs for eating. My mom grew up around chickens because my grandma and grandpa raided them for eggs, food, and um, competition.
We were discussing all the needs for chickens and Ewan started chiming in with his own knowlege of chickens. I was surprised at how much he knows about caring for chickens. He knows you need a coop, you can let the chickens out in the morning for some feed and then collect the eggs while they are busy eating, and that you need to make sure they all get back in the coop at night so they don't get eaten by any predators (his words). He volunteered to be the egg collector and the feeder. He also volunteered to help them find insects to eat.

Occasionally, when Ewan gets excited about something, he wants to keep talking about it and talking about it and talking about it. It is an endearing quality that he has. If you try to change the subject you get the response, "Mom, can we keep talking about _____?" In this case it was chickens. If you try to contribute to the conversation he lets you know that he isn't finished talking. This can go on for 45 minutes.

Ewan decided that he would be the teacher and that all the chickens could go to chicken school. He will teach the chickens the alphabet and what to do if they see a cyote. He knew this was somewhat silly but I think part of him thought it could be a good idea.

We talked about waht kind of food to feed the chickens, if you need roosters or not, what the chicken coop should look like. He thinks the coop should have a picture of a rooster painted on it and that it should have a button or lever on it to open the coop door--but it HAS to be high enough that a cyote can't figure out how to reach it. And he thinks we could have enough chickens to sell some of our eggs and give them away to people who might need some eggs too. He also thought we could find out more information on everythingyouneedtoknowaboutchickens.com. That isn't a real website but Ewan thought that is where you should go online to find out more about chickens. Even though he barely let me get in a word edgewise, it was fun to see him so excited and on board with doing something that is currently outside of his box.

I have a lot of dreams about how I want our family to live once we get back from the UK. Chickens, huge vegetable garden, own cow, compost pile, recycle everything...you get the idea. Who knows if all of that will be possible, but chickens are definitely high on the priority list. Until then I expect to keep hearing, "Mom, can we keep talking about chickens?"

2 comments:

Lyndsey said...

Too cute! The house we are renting for the moment actually has about 6 chickens!

I hope we settle down someday in a place with lots of room...I have the same dream as you for a big garden...a cow, a goat..a few chickens, and a bunch of happy, healthy kids growing wild :-)

mamabrown said...

It was very endearing to see Ewan so excited about chickens! He knows a tremendous amount about animals and their habits, what they eat, etc., etc., etc. And, not just chickens but about most animals you see at the zoo or domestic animals. His brain just absorbs facts about animals...will be interesting to see if this interest will become a life-long interest or not. Of course, he is a very intelligent little guy and has lots of other interests too and he isn't just focused on one thing. Any time you want to talk about super heros, he is the guy to talk to. Of course, grandmas love to hear their grandchildren talk about anything that's on their minds and I am so very blessed to have such adorable grandchildren that all talk a blue streak!