Chickens in the Hay


Chickens, enjoying a pile of hay with Mr. Pibb.

My morning animal chores take about an hour. I feed the dogs and cats first. The noise of dog food falling into the dog dish on the porch is the first signal to the goats and donkeys that I’m coming. The donkeys bray and the goats bleat. Everyone gets excited. I give everybody hay and fill up their water buckets. I tie up Glory Bee and milk Beulah Petunia while she gets her feed. (In whatever is the setup of the day.) I put the milk in the house and go back to see how everybody’s doing and finish up. Take some time to pet my goaties. I feed the chickens and ducks and collect eggs.

Working with animals on a daily basis, a lot of animals, is work. It can be messy and hard. I always come inside and go straight to the sink to scrub my hands with soap. But it’s also fun and cute and a great way to start the day. They depend on me. They’re always thrilled to see me. And they give so much back. It’s satisfying.

I can’t imagine starting my days any other way for the rest of my life.

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Posted by Suzanne McMinn on November 24, 2010  

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27 Responses | RSS feed for comments on this post

  1. 11-24

    I couldn’t agree with you more Suzanne! I have 6 goats, 3 sheep, 5 chickens, 8 dogs, and 5 cats. It takes a lot to get every one feed and taken care of (meds, grooming, feet, etc.). But it is well worth every minute and dollar that I spend on my babies. =)


  2. 11-24

    You are a lucky, but hard-working girl. When I grow up I’m going to be just like you!!!

  3. 11-24

    Every time I start to feel faint with envy over your life, I remind myself of just how much WORK it all is. I’m so glad you have this blog so I can enjoy your type of life without having to do the work of it. :) Speaking of animals and cuteness, any plans on getting one of those miniature horses that are so cute? You know the ones – the kind that they put little tennis shoes on the hoofs so they can be used as seeeing eye horses, yet they are great pets too?

  4. 11-24


  5. 11-24

    I have just three pygmy does and a few dogs and find my morning time and evening with them to be so grounding and matter what I have to lug, trod thru or endure weatherwise.

  6. 11-24

    Animals, I have found, are generally much nicer than people!

  7. 11-24

    To be content with one’s life is a blessing few people ever recognize.You are blessed and in return have blessed your readers.Thanks Suzanne!

  8. 11-24

    Great post, and I heartily agree. I can’t be in a bad mood with my 5 dogs, 2 horses and 1 barn cat all excited that it’s morning. :)

  9. 11-24

    Someday, I hope to have what you have. A little farm with one (or two) of every animal!

  10. 11-24

    What you do Suzanne is very hard work that is very rewarding. Bless your heart that you share your wonderful life will all of us here. That makes us blessed too. :yes: :yes: :yes: :hug:

  11. 11-24

    Animals make your day. . . that’s for sure! Nothing more satisfying and you get the added bonus of eggs and milk! Not to mention all the love they give you!

  12. 11-24

    There are those days where you wish you could be anywhere but doing animal chores, but those thankfully are far and few between. Most days when I feed the dogs, cats and chickens I think how blessed I am to be able to experience the joy of having animals. Like it’s been already said, they are always happy to see you, not matter how the rest of life is treating you.

  13. 11-24

    no one understands me when I say i long to spend the rest of my days on a farm with animals and that the reason is because i would feel satisfied at the end of the day. sitting here…. doing insurance…. it isn’t satisfying. so, i totally understand and agree and am just a taaaaad bit jealous ;)

  14. 11-24

    Hi Suzanne –

    I just found your blog and I love it! I was looking for a Homemade Hamburger Helper recipe and your blog popped up. Well I tried on of your recipes last night and they LOVED IT! So thank you for posting the recipes and I can’t get over how quick it was to make.
    I’ve been enjoying reading about you, your family and the farm. Its sounds idyllic, until you remember all the hard work that goes into it. And while I don’t have any farm animals depending on me to be fed in the morning, I do have 2 very large dogs who don’t understand what Holiday means when it comes to their breakfast – LOL!
    Wishing you and your family a wonderful Thanksgiving Holiday!

    Elaine Allen

  15. 11-24

    I agree! The Hungry Animal Choir (six chickens, three sheep, two goats, two llamas) never fails to make me laugh, no matter how tired or stressed I am or how miserable the weather is. There’s nothing like starting the day with goat hugs!

  16. 11-24

    I agree. Hubby usually does the morning horse chores unless he’s fishing a tournament out of town or has left in the wee hours to go on a job.

    I end up doing the afternoon horse chores a lot of times by myself.

    Then I do the morning and evening dog and cat stuff. He has to help when it’s heartgard time. I’m the catcher and he’s the poker downer.

    But, as said above it’s worth every bit of the time and money.

  17. 11-24

    I only have three dogs, one cat and two fish. The dogs make sure I get up at the right time so that they can go out and do their business, while they are doing that I fill all the bowls in the house with breakfast for them all. I think it’s comical that even the fish are pacing back and forth until I get their food in their tank. It is a wonderful way to start the day!

  18. 11-24

    I’m seriously considering trading in my onery husband for a couple of lovely goats. At least they’ll be happy to see me! :dancingmonster:

  19. 11-24

    Thank you for taking us along with you.

  20. 11-24

    You say what I feel so much better than I could! My 2 horses, 4 cats (2 in, 2 barn) and 6 chickens are ALWAYS so happy to see me that it makes a good start to every morning.

  21. 11-24

    Thats beautiful.

  22. 11-24

    I agree about chores-I like to say they frame my day.I have a friend who objects to the term “chores” as being tasks one does only because one must and that are odious. I don’t see my chores that way at all. My chores give me great satisfaction, even if I get sweaty or dirty doing them.

  23. 11-24

    All I feed these days is the cat, but early morning on the farm tending to the assorted animals and checking out the garden was always my favourite time of day. next to the evening round of making sure the assorted animals were fed and safe for the night, of course! Ah, how I miss being a farmer!

  24. 11-24

    My grandma milked cows until she was 87 years old. Her sons wanted her to get rid of “all those
    animals” but she knew better. They kept her going because as you said, they depended on her.
    Hard work is good for us! Congratulations on living your dream and thanks for sharing it with us,
    not to mention, inspiring us.

  25. 11-24

    Amen to that…are you my twin???

  26. 11-26

    Yep, it is hard work, but even my workaholic farmer/rancher has learned to wear GLOVES while doing a lot of his chores. Makes cleanup a whole lot easier. Think it might be worth considering??

    I don’t do farm chores anymore, but yard chores demand gloves too.

  27. 11-26

    I meant to say my “workaholic farmer/rancher brother” wear gloves a lot. Can’t spell or read some days!!!!

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