yesterday, with lucy napping peacefully in her crib, hudson and i ventured outside to pick up the daily eggs. it's our afternoon ritual--we say hello to the birds, thank them for their eggs and make sure they've got enough water in their bowl. well, yesterday they weren't quite through laying. in fact, peach and foghorn were both crowded into one of the nesting boxes, shuffling around and trying to get comfortable enough to drop an egg.
even with having chickens in our own backyard, i have to admit i'm a bit removed from the actual egg-laying process. every now and then i'll hear some loud cackling, but for the most part, the eggs just seem to appear and we eat them. but hudson and i had plenty of time, and so we stood in the sunshine watching the hens. well, i watched the hens while hudson chewed thoughtfully on my thumb. it's hard work, being a baby.
having given (unmedicated) birth twice in the span of 18 months, i'm no stranger to the discomforts of labor and delivery. so believe me when i say--i felt for those chickens yesterday. the panting, the squatting, the seemingly-never-ending attempt to get comfortable. and finally, the stillness that comes with controlled pushing--the moment i was waiting for. each chicken's egg dropped on the floor of the wooden nesting box with a soft thunk. each hen stood resting for a moment and hopped down to get a long drink of water, then headed out to the lawn to peck at the grass.
we've all heard that one of the biggest problems with food in america is that, generally speaking, people are just too far removed from the growth and production of what they're eating. i guess this can happen even in one's own backyard. it's just so simple to take for granted the extraordinary.
in related news, we've switched over to organic feed (no gmo's) and we've decided to add another set of chickens to our flock. this time we'll be getting them as day-old chicks. stay tuned for fluffy butts of a different sort!