Wednesday, August 4, 2010

This is a Chicken Blog

It's a stormy, humid, hot, muggy August day here in NW Indiana. If that ain't bloggin' weather, I don't know what is.
The remnants of laundry day still hang on the line. Since Monday.
It's been so muggy, then rainy - at this point - I'm not taking them down - they are stayin' til they dry naturally. I can only imagine what the neighbors think.

Can I just tell you how much I treasure each of you? You guys had me in stitches all week with your comments. Seriously. Oh my. Let's all go camping together, in August. What a tale we'd have to tell.

Sorry to leave you 'hangin' about 'The Change'. I had no intention of so much time going by.
Ize been bizzy.

The change is at the end of this post - and God bless you if you read the whole thing.
I think there about 30 pictures with this post, and endless drivel to boot.
Refill your glasses, order dinner in. It's gone be a while.

It's come to my attention today that this is a Chicken Blog.
So I'm going to start by talking about ducks.

SO much has gone on around here that I haven't taken the time to tell you about.

Remember Claude and Maude?
Claude is no longer with us.
He was run over.
Please, tell me how a duck gets run over?

Maude and Claude were inseparable. I loved having mallard ducks that came and went as they pleased about the yard. Maude was quite friendly, but Claude, he was always a little standoffish. I think he remembered how much I squeezed him as a duckling.

Maude was no where to be found after Claude was hit.
Almost two weeks went by.
I grieved them both.
Then - one wonderful day - Maude was back!
But she wasn't the Maude I knew before.
I'm serious when I say - this duck was depressed.
I've never seen anything like it.
She wouldn't fly. She'd barely quack. She limped a little.

She's snapped out of it a little now.
She's taken to me as her mate.
Oh how I love that duck.
She's my pal.
A widowed duck, is there anything sadder?

Poor sweet Maude. She comes to the back door now and quacks loudly, like she's telling me she's going away for the day. She flies off, and then comes home for supper.

All of the chickens are just fine and dandy - well, except for two.
Scarlett has bumblefoot. I can barely look at it. It's just a big lump on her foot. It looks so tender. I've treated it the best I know how, but it's not getting better, or worse.
Stubs has/had an impacted crop. The goofball started eating straw. The things I've done to that bird to get her to empty her crop. Have you ever tried to make a hen throw up? How did I become this person? I used to wear makeup and paint my nails. I used to have a skin care regime. Now I put antibiotic cream on chicken claws and try to make hens regurgitate.

I was really worried about Stubs. I tried everything, and then got all Benny Hinn up on that bird. She's doing much better now - not sure that she's out of the woods, but it's been three weeks now, and she's eating, pooping, and being a regular chicken.

Little Phyllis hatched out a couple of adopted chickens. I know who the daddy be, but I don't know who the mommy.
I'm letting her free range about the yard with the babies. It's beyond cute. Letting nature take it's course, and letting her teach them how to be chickens.

The bantys are growing so fast. I adore them. They are so compact and perfect in every way.
Fifi is on the nest - and I'm not sure what's going on. I didn't take a picture of her - but that bird is a mess. She's burning up, no feathers on her belly, and has a wild look in her eyes. Either I've done the math wrong, or those eggs aren't hatching. She's sitting on eight. She's been SO faithful to set, that I'd have a hard time believing nothing will hatch. I check about 10 times a day. I want to clean her, wash the eggs, and replace them neatly in order.
I have a feeling that's not a good idea.

I've had the immense pleasure of meeting this gal.
She reads the blog, and we started emailing back and forth - and then I met her.
She's only two towns over.
She served me pickled asparagus.
I won't ever forget it.
She has no idea how she healed my soul that night.
Her gift of hospitality comes so natural to her, that she doesn't even realize how awesome she is at it.

This past weekend, I had my first overnight guest at the Squirrel Inn.
I'll be doing a whole post about this girl, and the one above, but for now, just the highlights.
If you don't read her blogs, ya oughta. She puts a lot of time and effort into them. Yes. Them.

Looky what she brought me.

We yakked so incessantly that I ended up having to take her to the Tastee Top for supper. It was 6pm before we knew it, and we was mighty hungry.
I think it's a tradition.
The Tastee Top is where I take blog friends.

I suppose this is a tradition as well. Goofy hand gestures.
If you meet me, you'd better be prepared for them.

Haven't talked much about the boy, but he's fine and dandy.
Just took four of his photos and entered them into the Lake County Fair.
Ize so proud.
School will start sooner than I want to admit.
Homeschooling highschool.
Whoulda thunk it?

Since the Garden Walk, I've just been trying to rest, and reconnect with friends.
Never before has it been this clear, that I need this as much as I need air.

A little road trip to Crete, Illinois.
Donna and Bert.
Don't get no betta.

This shop charmed my socks off.
This lady - she spoke with a REAL accent - and she was sittin' and making things for the store.
Loved it.

This dress made me hurt I wanted it so much.
Too small.
Even if it were my size - imagine me in it?
It could bring on a seizure in some people.

Been to a few Farmer's Markets.

All in all - happy, busy. Busy, happy.
Busy. Happy.

The garden looks sad to me.
So many things past their prime already.
BUT, the pumpkins are ridiculous.
Growing like weeds.

Ok - you've gotten to the part of the post that is about 'The Change'.
It's not winemaking - although that's on the list.
It's about changing.


I'm starting to feel like an old lady.

It's just a matter of time before I'm caught in a photo like these:

This picture was taken on a 95 degree day. Mmmhmmm.

This really needs to be a separate post. All to itself, but I feared if I did that, I'd never get to tell you about all the fun things I've been up to, or I'd never tell you about the change - and well - it's just a big ole blog mess.

I'm not a good blogger.
I'm a messy, confused, haphazard blogger.

These are a few things I must change if I am going to be happy.
Happy - content - 'ok' - choose your adjective.
My attitude.
I'm a little high-strung - just incase you hadn't noticed.
I need to have a mentally relaxed attitude.

I need to learn to let go.
Aaron is growing up.
It's freaking me out.
I can't control it.

I will delve more into this.

My weight MUST change.

These pictures were taken in 2004/05.

Please, if you can think of any other way I could embarrass myself more, please email me. I am looking for new ways.

See that look on my face? That was my happiness. It wasn't so much about my waist size as it was me knowing that I was being the best me I could be. Inside. Choices. Attitudes.

I just know if I can change this:

To this:

I can change my body again.
I can change my mind again.
I can change.

I have wrestled with myself to the point of exhaustion.
I'm carrying too much weight - physically and mentally.
I've had a couple of odd dreams that I'll hopefully share with you tomorrow or the next day.

It's time to change.

There will be much drivel ahead.
I hope you will join me.
I hope you will.


  1. Your garden looks so beautiful. I'm wondering what it looks like in the middle of winter when things are no longer green. Winter is a change I don't like. I like something to be in bloom. But, I suppose you have a plan for making winter beautiful, too. I'll just have to watch your blog to see what you do with it.

  2. Ok, I read it all, but I was still laughing at the end about the laundry, because that is so me to the point that it's just ridiculous, LOL.

  3. SO SO happy to see a post from you on the Tales blog, Lady! I was beginning to worry. I was actually wondering if the change was that you had decided to give up blogging! already know how I feel about that.

    I remember one of the first comments you ever left on my blog you said we had a lot in have no idea!

    I feel SO sad for poor Maude. So...where do you think she flies off to every morning? I think it's awfully sweet of her to stop by the back door to let you know she is off. Do you suppose she's off looking for Claude? Poor Maude.

    Well...I'm surely looking forward to seeing these upcoming posts. Keep 'em coming, Girlfriend!

  4. Gosh I enjoy everything about you. :)

    Sounds like you're going through what I just did. I needed out so I walked away from work for 2 weeks to refocus on me. But seems that old habits die hard. I'm as confused as I was prior.

    In a nutshell, those with much on their plate lose ground and focus. We're spread too thin and overthink too much so it just drones on and on and never gets done. Enter 2 hours from now and you have more on the list to deal with.

    Somewhere our survive and thrive mechanism gets jammed and we need a reset. Then figure out how to rewire that balance mechanism so it actually works again.

    Well, at least I told you about me. I hope I didn't add another to do to your own list!! :)


  5. p.s. I thought that's what you were SUPPOSE to do with laundry. Just leave it out there until it decides to dry. Take it off the line when you wanna wear it. I have no room in my closet for it anyway so what the hey.


  6. I have fought the weight loss battle for years. Before that I fought the weight gain battle. I have been skinny as a rail half my life, and fat as a pig half my life. There was a brief period of time in there when I was just right, but I blinked and missed it.s

  7. Ok, I haven't left a comment in a while but I'm still reading the blogs, I'm only doing so today bcuz I had to tell you about the pic of the single lady in the yellow top....I have that skirt! What does that say about me?! lol Tay and I were dying laughing. I've never wore it and may never now. I'm her, (still laughing), we have to hook up soon. I did try and call you, not home. We've so much to catch up on. Enuff for now, is my spelling making your skin crawl? lol love you, call me.

  8. We are women... We can move mountains and change anything we choose to change. I've been eating differently since July 11th and lost seven pounds.. okay, that's not much, but it's a start. I'm with ya!


  9. Jayme...
    I have to exhale....hold on....
    okay...You go girl...can I just say that and get away with it???
    You go??? Cause sometimes my comments are the longest dang comments on your site, and well, ....YOU GO says it all.
    Go after it. Not striving and hot and bothered and pursuing like a bat out of you know where ...just start. Do the next thing in front of you that you really want to tackle. Get a goal. Write it down.
    Figure out the steps. Write down the challenges or hurdles you KNOW are gonna try and get in the way to stop you. Then write down how you are gonna sidestep those. You go. You WILL get there. But don't strive...just go...nice and thing you see to do in front of you. Stick to the plan. IF you fall down, just get back up and dust yourself off, and get back in step. You go. If anybody will do the change and get the prize....I'm bettin on you girl.
    And by the way, I think Maude has a new boyfriend, and I hate to tell you this, but that sad duck ending may just have been a set up "hit and run"...New boyfriend in the Mallard Duck Mafia... so sad....Watch that girl...she may be gettin in trouble! Better get Aaron to follow her one day...
    Hugs to you Jayme...honestly I'm glad you're not doing the "still". that bottle of wine tipped up really sent me in a tizzy... :-) Glad you're back...

  10. Your chickens are beautiful! Love the blog!

    The Chicken Keepers

  11. Oh I read the whole darned thing! I can see that you are another crazy woman...much like myself thank you! I feel so sad about the ducks (or are they geese). of our friends was a duck hunter. One year he killed a male duck and when he went to gather it the female was there and mourning. He swore it was crying. That was the last hunting he ever did....sweet soul of a man.

    I have fought my weigh (get it-way?) up and down the scale for years. I need to tighten my program up and get back where I am supposed to be too.

    I love that you are independent (seemingly) and have such a broad love of life. You are my kinda gal! Happy Wacky Wednesday! Diana

  12. Oh, Jayme, I need the same change too. You are soooo brave! You are a breath of fresh air on this muggy day. I love Maude too. Keep us inspired on the weight thing, I really need it!

  13. My Mom once anointed our sick pig with oil. Mmmm Hmmm. We needed that bacon. We was low in the funds. And that pig? It perked right up. Sho nuff.

    As for you? Well, you never cease to...surprise me... Make me CU... inspire me...warm me up on the inside.

    I'm with you, Mini-Mart.

    Oh Law, I'm up on my stool C'ing U over Mini-Mart. Divine inspiration! And I know I's Minnie, but honestly? I forgot that part until right now. And now that I remembered, the whole Mini-Mart thing isn't quite as funny, so I'm playing dumb.

  14. now I say're just Cool in my book!

  15. Jayme, Every time your blog comes up in the reader, my heart jumps just a little. I know it's going to be good. You could tell us how you sat in a chair all day and watched the rain come down and it would be entertaining! But I must say, I loved the poultry update. And as far as letting go... if you did it once, you can do it again. Embrace the "just do it" thing!

  16. this post was so full of info i'm having a hard time figuring out what to comment on, so I'll just say generally speaking, you make me laugh.

  17. I can last for days on one of your blogs!!! Keeps me going, keeps me happy. Now however, you've posted the change and now I have to think about that!! You are brave my friend.
    I have mirrors all over my bathroom...showering is NOT FuN!!! fortunately I wear glasses so I can barely see myself!!! Frosted windows may be outdated, but I think they rock!!!
    I'm so impressed with all you are so inspirational! Love your girls, your Erin and your sympathetic attitude where Maude's concerned.

    Have a great day Jayme!!

  18. Honey, those chickens and ducks of yours are truly beyond cute! Another blog friend and I started Weight Watchers online a couple of weeks ago. We just knew things had to change. So think about joining us on this journey. We will all be old women one day, if we're lucky. Maybe we'll just be a little bit skinnier old women with wrinkles. Hey, we keep one another accountable. It's a good program unto itself. We could call ourselves the Weight-Losing Sista Hood or something.

  19. Funny that a blog about chickens would wind up being about ducks! Will be waiting to hear what changes are in store for you, as I've got changes going on here all the time! Bless ya on your journey!

  20. YOU my dearest are the BEST blogger out there...we all love it and look forward to a post from you.
    And you are very brave...I think the embarrassing part is hopeless though. Ha.

    You do a ton of stuff, and seem to enjoy it all....thus the exhaustion--and probably very real. You deserve some rest.

    I'm with you on the change part though. I seem to be in a rut, and having to let go of things is so hard. I really just want a new life, a simple life, and maybe just have some fun along the way?

    I bet if you really evaluate yours you are already doing that!

    WE all love you dearly...can't you tell? Geeesh! You always get a zillion comments! :)

    I can't wait to come up and stay in the squirrel and go have dinner at Tastee Top too.

    Love you bunches!

  21. You are AMAZING!! Read the whole thing and would have read more. :) You are AMAZING!!

    I also feel in a rut as seems to be going around. Kudos to you for recognizing that you need/want to change. Some people (like me) continue to plod down the path, knowing its wrong. Some people (like me) just keep on keepin' on...knowing they need to change whatever but just not having the whatever to be able to do it.

    You're my Idol. :)

  22. Yes! You can do anything you set your mind to! And don't forget to have fun doing it, shifting the weight or whatever. Loved sitting down and talking with you. And I enjoyed meeting your chickens, family and friends. Keep the drivel coming. hee, hee

  23. Well, as always, I enjoyed every single bit. And I'm with you on the change. I've been working on that healthy change too (nothing like turning the big 5-0 to open one's eyes to everything... i.e., health & being happier..). I shall join you! -Tammy

  24. I'm glad your back. Just breathe, if your weren't on the other side of the world I would be there to give you a hug. You have a beautiful garden, and you always make me smile when I read what you have been up to.
    Don't be so hard on yourself.

  25. Change your weight if you want, change your garden around if the mood strikes you, change the subject from chickens to ducks mid-blog, then back to chickens again ...just don't YOU change!

    Seeing a new post from you on my sidebar makes me feel like I just found a refund check amongst my bills ...just all kinds of happy!

    : )

  26. How could I not join you on this trip! Jeez, you've got one of the best blogs evar, I'm so happy when you post :)

    Amazing transformations, my dear... am very impressed. Whatever you tackle now will be met with great success.

    ps: Maude needs a new boyfriend... can you perhaps rescue a lone duck? :(

    pps: bumblefoot needs surgery or it will get septic and your hen could die.... plus it's painful to her, trust me. there's a product you can buy to soak her foot in, no surgery - email me if you want info, i've done the surgery before!

  27. Sometimes.. I think you are in my head, except you are way funnier and way braver than I am. The hand shot? I loved it. I do the same thing. I too, am feeling like an old lady. Maybe I am.
    I think you should write a book while you continue to write your blog, forever. I love that you can open up to "all of us" like you do. I wish you lived across the street from me.

  28. Hey gal, How come you never took me to the Tastee Top? Love the picture of the old woman. Call me someday. Cyn

  29. You always seem to be enjoying yourself and that is important. I am sorry for Maude and glad she is adjusting. Don't be hard on yourself. I'll bet a lot of us bloggers are carrying a few extra pounds. Something seems to happen at around 50 and even us formerly skinny women gain weight. I'm longing for a hot fudge sundae!

  30. You are everywoman, Jayme. I have battled weight my entire life and though I have excelled at many many things in life, it is all colored by the weight thing. A psych told me once that with most of her eating disorder patients, the current that runs through them all is anxiety. I guess it must be because I can't remember a time I didn't feel that. Buddha's last words were " all things pass away. Strive on." I guess we can only strive on, keep trying.

  31. You are a hoot! I'm so glad you have been relaxing, I was getting a bit worried about you getting ready for the garden walk. I think you are so great for wanting to take care of yourself inside and out. Weightloss is much more effective when we figure out what's goin' on on the inside. Best of luck to you. I look forward to ready about your progress.
    Thankyou so much for sharing, and inspiring me to get off my duff and make my yard beautiful!

  32. Jayme, you are a funny and talented lady. But you are a real woman who encourages me every time you write (no pressure though :) ).

    I love reading your blog. We are all dealing with things that will never go on our blogs, and rightly so, but your transparency is truly refreshing to me.

    Thank you for being Jayme. I am so glad I found you.

  33. Jayme,

    Thank you for the inspiring, humorous, knowledgeable posts that always motivate me to do more, be more.

    Thank you for sharing your summer escapades with us. It makes me happy to read about your adventures in the garden, tending to chickens and ducks, contemplating goats and lambs, meeting new friends and reconnecting with old ones.

    A sentence you wrote jumped off the screen and assaulted my heart:

    "Please, if you can think of any other way I could embarrass myself more, please email me. I am looking for new ways."

    If you want change, begin here. Stop doing that. Stop thinking you don't measure up -- in gardening, in blogging, in who you are. My wish for you is that you could see yourself through our eyes, through Glenco's and Aaron's eyes.
    If you want to change you must start by loving and appreciating yourself and knowing you are worth it. And you are, my friend, so worth it.


  34. Jayme,
    you scared me.
    All this talk about change and then the photo of your hand and wedding rings...Lod have mercy,for a minute there I thought you were talking about the big "D"
    I visit everyday and love it all.

  35. "Got all Benny Hinn up on that bird"...that line made me spit my coffee! So dang funny. And I for one LOVE your blogging style. So real, like I've known you forever. I plan to stay with you, drivel and all!

  36. It's clear that you touch each one of us every time you write. I think I can speak for all when I say we're here for you with hugs and support in whatever way you need it.

    I'm 52 (gulp). I took my grandkids home from camp yesterday and I had mentioned that maybe if I put on a yellow T-shirt like the other 6-year-olds and got down on my knees I could sneak in and join them in the games and swimming and other fun. My grandson looked at me and said, in the most honest and loving way possible, "you're going to have to do something about all those wrinkles on your face, Grandma." I melted and realize I just have to embrace it.

    My heart is breaking for Maude. Can you get another friend for her?

  37. I just love reading your blog.It reads like a good book.Trust me with a 15 yr old,7 yr old,and a five yr old I dont have that much time to read.You make my days.Thanks.

  38. I read this post yesterday...and then this morning...Ummmm and then again tonight. I'm not addicted REALLY! I just kept thinking about that poor duck! Ok, maybe it wasn't the duck...I wish it was that DUCK! Truth be told, I was stuck on your weight loss story and I know in my heart that I have get on board with ya. Just know, you're not alone're not alone.
    (Watch how I avoid discussing this any further)
    When do you start school? I'm a firm believer that we shouldn't start school until after Labor Day. However, I caught my daughter sneaking a little Social Studies in her room yesterday. I showed her! I tattled on her in my blog. We have a Junior, a Freshman and an 8th grader. We'll be trying a Co-op for the first time this year.
    God Bless Ya,

  39. I'm right there with you on it all. 'Cept the brave barenekked shot... And even for that I think you looked good - I'd kill for your cute hair (nuther story). Mostly the highstrung n tired bit. feelin' such the geezer, needin a break, too overloaded, too fat... No more nails n fashion - it's all about the critters n kids (who are changin too fast). BUT I just got an unexpected all clear from heart doc and have lost weight and gained energy by going gluten free, so it's TIME for me too. Bring on that Squirrel and let's shop for red hats just to have ready for when (IF) we do slow down! Blessings to Maude, Phyllis and Fifi. More tough old birds. And I wanna neighbor who greets me w/a sunny smile, huge tub of ?dip and two bottles of wine!
    Clearly I'm especially w/you on the ramblin', messy n confused. sorry.

  40. Love you. That's it. Just love you.

  41. Change. It can be good, bad and scary. God knows I've had my fill this year but I also feel more coming. I'm headed down the fitness trail and it begins the day the girls go back to school. Time to pay some attention to myself again. You need the same. You put the chickens before you Jayme! You are amazing, strong woman. I know you can do it. But, you are gorgeous either way. Just sayin.

  42. I love your randomness. And I follow along perfectly!

    Your cluckers are beautiful! We could have a moment of silence for Claude at our service next week. I don't believe ducks go to heaven, but whatever, he'll be missed. Maude will move on...that little hussy!

    Aaron is so handsome. He looks like Lionel Ritchie in this snap! My nephew started to have a odor about him a couple years ago. They took him to the Dr. b/c they thought he had some "infection" and it was those plastic bracelets he wore from Disney 2 weeks before. So keep your nose nearby!

    The picture of me was at a good angle, made me look thinner than I really am, but that is the trade off for the lighting making me look like a "gothic alcoholic". I'm not...just for the record! Ha!

    I love you just how you are...but we can commiserate over that in a couple of weeks. How do you spell commiserate? Who am I trying to impress?? We will "TALK about that until we make each other sick" in a couple of weeks. How's that?

    I miss you.


  43. So happy to see a chicken post ~ its been a while.
    So sorry to hear about Claude.
    Happy to hear that Maude seems to be feeling better.
    Good luck on your inside out work.
    We all need to do that from time to time...
    ~Andrea in NH

  44. Jayme - I discovered your blog a couple of weeks ago and have loved it all. You've got a talent for writing and photography, that's for sure! Drivel on ~ it's worth reading. :>)

    I'm one year younger than you, and chuckled at the "old hand" picture! I too look down at my hands and ask, "who in the heck gave me these old hands? I'm not THAT old."

    I love your blog to pieces!

  45. I love your blog just the way it the change part, well, I need to do that maybe I will do it with you...smiles, Linda

  46. Hi Jayme!
    I just want to say that I think you're perfect just the way you are, but I understand your desire to make positive changes in your life. I think we all go through seasons in our lives when change is necessary, whatever those changes may be. Just know we're here cheering you on!

  47. You know we're gonna join you, not a one of us like the person we see in the mirror. Too short, too tall, too skinny, too fat, boobs too little, boobs too big, wrinkly skin, dry scalp...and then there's halitosis. We are works in progress, the sun is going to come up tomorrow so that's a sign we can start all over again with a clean slate. I study you pretty closely, and I see a woman who makes the world beautiful by just being in it!

  48. Love u, Love this blog, and just in case you need sisterly love my name is Glenda to! :) Thanks for stopping by the little newbie blog, it means the world and more to me.

  49. OK.
    You are not alone.
    We both know what plan of eating makes us feel healthy and safe and baseline and not crazy.
    You can do this.

    I think you should create a zone for this as you do your housework and garden.

    Just zone it in.

    It is going to be OK.


  50. I stumbled on your blog months ago. I have enjoyed everybit of it. Thank you for sharing your life and being real. Brave, fun, strong. You empower others. You give others that believe they have to be perfect permission to be beautifuly themselves.

  51. I found your blog because of my fantasy of raising chickens. I've decided to pass on the chicken foot rot and barfing hens and stick with butterflies. I'll also stick with your blog as you make me laugh and I so admire your transparency.

  52. hi Jayme -- So happy you happened upon my blog, so I could happen upon yours!
    We're chicken-sistahs, all right!

  53. There is nothing better, when you have had a few dark days, and your dreams come back!
    Great inspiration!

  54. Doggone it! I knew I shoulda warned you! Happens after every wedding. {My kids'} It's a too-be-expected let down after months of intense activity, when it all comes to culmination . . . then, all of a sudden . . . nothing. Nothing to occupy your mind. Nothing to occupy your hands. What in the world do I do now? It doesn't last long, really. An acquaintance of mine took me to task because I didn't warn her before her daughter's wedding . . . I'm sorry. I should have said something sooner . . . at least you would have known to stock up on funny movies.


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