I had been carefully writing this entry in my head all day (Sunday) while I went about my life and of course when I get the time to sit down and write it, I forget how I had written it. The way I had written it was very graceful. oh well, I guess I will just jump right into it.
My family is big on self sufficiency (we talk the talk) and as part of that project we obtained our chickens. As a refresher, last year we had a lot of trouble with them, we had a NH that cannibalized and we butchered her and consumed her. We did it all at home, just D and me and it was not as hard as we had thought but still not our favorite task. My point of this entry though is that this year we are going to reduce our numbers again by ½. I know it sounds terrible because we named some of them and yes we loved them and cared for them for 2 years. I have already placed an order for 6 new chickens and I have already made the ‘call’ to a local processing plant.
I admit being slightly nervous about this and our flock will be significantly reduced until April when the new chicks come and they wont lay for 6 months after that, which will slow down the egg business here quite a bit. We are doing it now because I only have a few to go and they have another “farm” processing a larger quantity at the same time. This saves us a bundle and well its just the right time.
I also admit being slightly sad about it but I have to remind myself that they will be feeding my family after 2 years of running around in my back yard, being carried around and getting to eat all the wonderful scraps from my garden as well as uneaten foods from the table. That they in fact have had 100 times better of a life than a chicken at a large processing plant, who for their short lives do not even get to see the sun, eat only bagged feed that has been carefully selected to maximize their growth. No, I shouldn’t feel badly at all. I should feel thankful. A life is a life though and so I am a struggling with this a little.
Thank you chickens for the last 2 years.