It is the perfect compliment to our farmhouse and our breakfasts. Whether poached, fried, baked, scrambled, or deviled, eggs are often enjoyed on our morning menu. The flavor of a fresh organic egg is a local culinary treat. Guests can even collect eggs from the brick coop just steps from the kitchen door.
We have a flock of thirteen hens, one rooster, and four new baby pullets. We can expect our chickens to be our companions for five to ten years as they lay about one egg every thirty-four hours. Visitors to the chicken yard can watch our clucking, crowing, squawking birds as they come beg for scratch corn treats and kitchen scraps, or take their daily dust baths.
America spends forty billion dollars a year on chicken products and paraphenailia. Chickens are the decorative mainstay for country living. We have curtains, flower pots, dishes, towels, wall art, salt and pepper shakers, and clothing as examples.
Chickens are a part of our culture and our language. If you ‘chicken’ out, you are a coward. If you act like a ‘mother hen’, you worry about your children. ‘Laying an egg’ means you bombed in a theatrical performance. When your writing is hard to read, it’s called ‘chicken scratch.’ We celebrate at weddings with the ‘chicken dance.’
The chicken connects us to nature, history, and romance. It is an idyllic symbol of homestead farms where we knew our animals, and found our life sustained by their presence.