little victories

Back on a cold morning in June I drove down the road to pick up some pullets from a kid who breeds a mix of chook breeds. We'd also ordered some fertilized eggs to incubate just as a back up, and that had mixed success so I'm thankful that I bought these lovely pullets from that chook kid. Normally I'd just get Isa Browns, as they've never let me down. They're good layers and the most popular breed around these parts making them rather cheap, sometimes $4.00 a bird. Can you believe that? That's so cheap that anyone with a backyard could have chooks! Anyway I was interested in some breeds that I'd never had before. I picked White Suffolk and Rhode Island Reds and one mixed half-breed as a test. Apparently the mixed breeds are good layers. $10 a piece was a fair price, and I felt good that this little kid was building his chook breeding empire and that I was finally getting my own birds again.

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There is nothing more rewarding than heading out to the chook pen and picking out the eggs and cooking them for breakfast! It's one of the joys of growing up on the farm that I treasure from all those years ago. But during winter they don't lay, and our girls are pullets so they were definitely too young to be laying. But about a week ago I did my ritual check in the hen house, and low and behold they're looking back at me was a clean little pullet egg. Not much of an egg but it's the first egg of this oncoming warm season and boy did it make me happy. The next day another egg, as well as the following. So I figure only one girl has started laying and the others are still not ready. I have a feeling it's the mixed breed, because the others sometimes huddle in a group away from her whispering and giggling behind her back. I can almost hear them saying mean things like "she only his favorite because she's laying" "What's so special about laying anyway...she's such a suck!"

The first egg meal with lightly fried prosciutto and a dollop of stinging nettle pesto. It's a fine life.

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