I thought it only appropriate (as I watch the blog/Streep fest Julie and Julia) to write about the founders of our farm. I speak not of I or Donnie, of Jack or Ms. Kitty, of Chompers or Mustafa, or even of Cantaloupe and Ginger. I speak of the farm animals. The beasts of burden that can be easily had for cheap money on craigslist.com. Those I have over-paid for and care for as if they are my children.
Say hello to our chickens in residence. Sure, we’ll add a few more…and even some turkeys in the spring…but these girls were my first and will always have a place in my heart. (Please don’t ask about the three roosters I had since their birth and where they are now – probably dinner, but my favorite is a free-range stud in PA.) Lady Diana and the Duchess of Gloucester I have had since Day 1 – they are my lovies. We’ve had them for over a year – their birthday is July 24th.
The Princess Royale and Young Victoria joined the family from a farm in Maryland. After I re-homed my third rooster, the girls needed some company. While Gloucester rules the roost, Victoria is the beast of the group. Three of the ladies are Silkies and one is an Easter Egger…blue eggs! I will only have Silkies from now on – they are sweet, loving, and have spunk!
Our other two ladies – Lady Bird and Mamie Eisenhower – joined the family a month before we moved to Ohio. They are rabbits – Mamie is white, a mini-rex, and soft as heaven! Ladybird is black, not as soft, and Polish. They are both inquisitive, sweet, and love to go where they shouldn’t. They live outdoors, in a lovely enclosure that lets them be inside and out. They hop, scamper, and eat, eat, eat! Ladybird loves her lettuce, and Mamie loves her pellets – different pallets but both discerning. I would expect no less in my household!
And so you have met the ladies of Orchard House. (Although Ms. Kitty still holds, and WILL always hold, the title of Dowager Queen.) As we add more ladies, and men, to the farm over the coming months, we must remember our founders, our George Washington, our John Smith! We are not Animal Farm – we are more Charlotte’s Web – and everyone has a place on the farm and a role to play…no matter your species, sex, or supposed functionality. We love you all. Even Wally may eventually find a place in his heart for everyone. Although he does continue to growl at the stallion next door and stare longingly at the geese flying overhead in formation.