Tuesday, June 24, 2008

RIP Chickie, Black, and Red (3/25/06-6/24/08)

In order to make room for the new chickens, we had to (ahem) "retire" the old ones.  We all knew this day was coming, and that this was "fulfilling the measure of their creation", but it was still difficult for me.  I'm glad they had a good life, not like battery cage chickens.

My sweet Mister took care of everything, making sure I didn't see anything that would be upsetting.  He came and told me after that he vocally thanked each chicken for providing us food before killing it, which made me feel better.

The boys wanted to see them (after they were plucked and cleaned) and were surprisingly not upset- although they thought it was gross.  We talked about how we were so grateful to the chickens for giving us eggs and now meat.  I think it's good for them to see where their food comes from.  

Mr. Gordon, Fred, Mario, and Little Jerry all seem to be doing well, and as far as we can tell, are all hens (although we're not so sure about little jerry (which is especially funny if you're a seinfeld fan)).  They are getting huge and are really hard to feed in the pen in the garage, because when you take the top off the fly up at you.  It's a little scary, and I've thought about wearing safety goggles (my eyes! my eyes!).

They'll be thankful for the larger pen out in the fresh air and sunlight. 


adam said...

Thank you for that thoughtful eulogy. Incidentally I had chicken tonight for dinner without a thought, but I value this reminder to be more grateful for the living things who are sacrificed.

Charlotte said...

You really are my hero, Al. I told jase that I would consider eating meat again if we raised it, cared for it and then slaughtered it ourselves - like you. I wish everyone was so mindful and grateful when they eat.

Lisa said...

Aw, RIP, little chickies! Tyson's little brothers and sisters just got some chicks, and they haven't made a real pen for them yet. The chicks currently live in a Little Tykes playhouse with boarded up windows.

Allie said...

Don't be too impressed, we still buy huge bags of frozen chicken breast at costco. The meat from chickens as old as ours were (over 2) is not good meat. It's tough. We're hoping it will be okay in bbq shredded chicken sandwiches.

We'd have to have a lot more space to raise chickens for the meat (you'd raise them for less than a year).

We do get most of our red meat from hunting, which I like because I feel like I know what is in it, and how it has been processed a little more (we have a butcher that does a good job, so we don't process that meat, it would take forever!).

Allie said...

I bet the chicks LOVE the little tykes play house.

Too funny!

My mom and I were talking about the chickens. It's not practical to keep them forever, they only lay really well for a year or so, then it slows down, and they can live for 14 years or something if no predator gets them first. So unless you plan on a chicken retirement village, you have to "do something" with them.

If I have to kill them, we're going to eat them (even if they are really tough- I've heard they are good for chicken stock).