December 12th, 2006


The Girls

One girl got out. I just can't figure where. Guess I need to walk the perimeter at chicken height, which would mean crawling. So I shut them in the main run yesterday afternoon because I would be gone for 5 hours and it would be dark when I returned. No more finding chickens trying to roost outside the coop, thank you.

Here's the deal. There's a passive-aggressive behavior in children that involves going to bed. Certain things relating to comfort and physical well-being are generally 'allowed' as ways to prolong going to sleep without incurring a parent's wrath and punishment. As the evil Mom, I don't buy these tricks which are usually requests for water. So E knows that Dad will allow her to get a drink and Mom will say 'you should have thought of that before you went to bed.' Sometimes Mom does adjust the rule for events such as pizza (which is very salty) and colds (where one should hydrate). But in general, Mom is tough because Mom sees this as a delaying tactic. A legitimate one, but one not to be encouraged as a way of getting what one wants.

Last night, when I went down to put the girls to bed, shut the hatch and turn out the light, they were all up on the roost, as they should be. It was way past dusk, about an hour after their bedtime. They coo'd when I coo'd. I stepped inside, counted them, closed the hatch. And at that very minute, one of the girls decided she had to have a drink of water. And what seems like a good idea to one chicken will seem like a good idea to other chickens. So in all, three of the girls hopped down off the roost and had a drink of water. Am I their mother or their god? If I'm a god, they're just not very pious.

I tried hard to believe that this wasn't a delaying tactic, that they really needed a drink. As soon as there was a break in the drinking, I switched off their light and counted to ten, then switched it back on again. I did this three times to get the message through. Each time while it was dark, there was some sibling shuffling and changing of position on the roosts, not much talking. Mom means business. First one, then the second hopped back up to the roost. The third (the first one that had hopped down) was much more cavalier about getting back up. But by the third dark event, she got my message.

Good grief. Chicken P/A children.
Frog Out


I was feeling better yesterday. Ran E to her Monday appointments, walked 1.5 miles while she was at one of them...sort of slow, not up to my normal speed. We picked up chinese food on the way home, a Monday treat. (We import our chinese food 30 miles as the best around.)

I got home, put chickens to bed, fed cats and dogs and started to feel very cold. I couldn't get warm. By the time I had finished dinner, I was shivering a bit. When J came in (late), I dumped E's homework and other crises on him and went to our room, really shivering. I climbed under the down quilt and tried to get warm. By 8:30 I was running quite a fever and shivering uncontrollably still. At that point, J forced some aspirin on me. I dozed and woke an hour later, in some degree of comfort. But it was a rough night.

Oddly enough the fever broke in the night. Other than this cold I've had, I have no idea where it came from or why. Today I feel wrung out and have a splitting headache. E and I will not do our walk today, I think. In fact, I think it's time to crawl into bed for the rest of the day.

See my priorities? Blog, then rest.

Frog Out