I read an article a few weeks ago about backyard urban chicken farming. And it struck me as the right balance of "pet" and "egg factory." I know the kids would love to have a pet, for a MINIMUM of 48 minutes, but the thing is, I don't actually like animals all that much. I respect their place in the world and all, but in close proximity, I'm just kind of scared they will all bite me.
So, chickens. How fancy would that be? I will name them Hester and Ethel and we will be soooo hippy.
Chris said, "okay." But now he's saying "not okay."
This kids are on my side, though.
Various offers of help were made:
"I will use half my piggy bank to pay for the chicken." (Sam)
"I will collect all the eggs." (Sam)
"I will wash the chickens." (Owen, with accompanying scruba-scruba motions)
"I will take the chickens on a walk." (Owen)
It has rather taken over their thought process.
When I got home yesterday, Chris greeted me with news about a bad thing that had happened to Sam at school.
I went to talk to Sam, and he said, "Dad told me I could have anything I wanted that would make me feel better. Well, anything that wasn't a chicken."
And for a minute I was all, "Jeez, the kid gets assaulted at school and we can't even spring for some KFC?"
Today, our new swing set was delivered to the backyard in a huge cardboard box. The children's first guess about the contents? A chicken. "Well I knew it probably wasn't two chickens," Sam says. "Because it needs space to run around."
Tonight, when Lilly was talking about chickens again I said, "You know, guys, we're probably not going to get chickens. That might just be a little too much."
"Okay." Lilly said, "We can get a turkey."