What came first- the chickens or the blog?

Losing Something of Myself -Part 1

Write about a loss: something (or someone) that was part of your life, and isn’t any more.
This doesn’t need to be a depressing exercise; you can write about that time you lost the three-legged race at a picnic. What’s important is reflecting on this experience and what it meant for you — how it felt, why it happened, and what changed because of it.

Today’s twist: Make today’s post the first in a three-post series.

We moved house with a thirteen month old son and a three week old baby boy. It was all hands on deck. Cleaning, painting, carpet laying, curtain hanging.
It was a good thing we were young and had grandparents close by armed with mops, drills, paintbrushes, and were willing to spend their tea breaks nursing fractious babies.
Furniture was delivered and allocated to rooms.
Clothes and shoes sorted into drawers and wardrobes.
Food into cupboards.
There were still plenty of boxes. Boxes and boxes. And more boxes.
How could two adults and two squirming infants own or need so much stuff?
After filling the aptly named box room, the spare room, the cloakroom and spending evenings with a colicky babe strapped to my chest sorting though the boxes I gave up and shoved some random boxes out in the coal shed.
Not checking the value of what was inside.
Not knowing that it would be many months before life would settle down and I would remember those boxes.
Not realising that with the advent of central heating, the coal shed had not been used for many years and was very damp and prone to leaking.
Not appreciating that what was being slowly destroyed by rain and mildew was in fact of some personal value to me, and me alone.


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Feeling Broody

With Gillyboy number two having left school, and number four now aged in double digits we can no longer be classified as having young children. I have always loved babies. I love their smell, their tiny perfect nails, their ancient wise stare, those chubby little wrists…but our family is so busy and our lives full of activities we can all enjoy I am not longing to return to long sleepless nights and the Terrible Twos. Also four children is one more than my car can carry at a time! Enough is enough!
At this time of the year my hen keeping friends are buying new pullets or nurturing their own hens eggs to get new chicks for their flock. It would be nice to introduce some new hens, particularly since our coop is supposed to hold up to ten birds, but our girls are an established flock and we can just about keep on top of using up three fresh eggs on most days. To introduce new hens would take time and may not be successful. Much as I would fancy a little variety by buying a different breed or two mixed in with the rusty Gillybirds. As we have no rooster we can’t breed and incubate our own. Anyway the cost of egg incubators is shocking! And this way of increasing your flock seems to bring its own disappointments.
We had the excitement and novelty of introducing a new puppy to our family last August, naughty Lucas is now about to celebrate his first birthday, bigger and bolder than ever.
And I look after my two year old nephew every Wednesday who has embraced the Terrible Twos with all the energy and determination that a two year old boy can muster.
And I have my gorgeous new niece, now 7 months old, who I get to see on Facebook or for real every couple of months.
At our church toddler group the mums know about my baby cravings and I get lots of cuddles from tiny newborns while they welcome the chance to drink a cup of tea in peace.
However, we have had some new arrivals here at Gillybirds Manor. Unplanned.
You may recall my blog post about a robin who came indoors one morning way back in January. Well, Mr and Mrs Robin found our premises to their liking and have built a nest high in our garage. Once discovered we kept away to leave them to roost in peace. And now we have two robin babies who fly in and out all day long. I’m not sure when they get their red breast feathers but they are tiny wee things just now.

Home Sweet Home for the Robin family

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World Egg Day!


It’s World Egg Day! Where would we be without eggs? I am planning to cook something very eggy for tea plus there will be an extra special Friday Sponge Cake to celebrate the safe arrival of my brother’s first little chick of his own just yesterday, a baby girl. The first girl to be born into our family since – Mrs Gillybirds herself! Welcome baby!

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