The Argument for Chickens

Although certain adults in our house see no good reason to have pet chickens, I like to focus on the positive. Several excellent reasons to keep chickens as pets include: Great tasting (and practically free) eggs, a step closer to sustainable living, they have incredible personality, your lawn is healthier as they eat the insects and leave some fertilizer instead, they eat table scraps, as well as leaf, weeds and grass clippings, are fairly low maintenance and besides, you'll have the coolest pets in the neighborhood (unless of course you live in the country and then that really won't be so fun and different!) (See My Pet Chicken for more info.)

It is easy to feel like you are a prisoner to your children. They truly do tie you down in ways you cannot know until you have them. But, I find life is much better when I focus on the things that only life with children can offer. So, here it goes. This week's top 3 (so far)...

Because of having kids I have had the privilege of:

1. Straining the bathtub

Ok, now, I don't know many single people or kid-less couples who have ever had the experience of straining the bathtub. For those of you who have never known such joy try this simple exercise: fill the tub full of water, add half a roll of toilet paper, let it sit for about 10 minutes before stirring vigorously. Now, DO NOT TRY DRAINING THE TUB (just trust me on this one, it won't work.) Instead, get out your fine metal strainer, like you use in cooking, and get to work. It's kind of like mining for gold, only, you get to swipe the toilet paper off the strainer in big, mushy balls (think wet globs of dryer lent). It's almost satisfying....almost...

At least it was only toilet paper this time and not other, um, bodily....things....

2. Teaching "Stranger Danger"

Recently there was an abduction attempt right down the street at a local church. A girl was waiting to be picked up by her mom and someone drove up and told her that her mom had asked him to pick the child up. The child immediately ran back into the church and told an adult.

It made me think: what would my kids do? We had never really talked about this and well, really, unless you are a parent (or teacher) you probably don't talk much about it to anyone. So, we sat down and I asked Aidan, Madeline and Lily: "If you are outside and someone drives up and tells you to get in the car, would you get in the car with them?"

They stared at me blankly and then Madeline said with a gleam in her eyes, "Oh, yes!" And that is probably the most honest answer because I am certain that until that moment, she would have jumped right in and probably asked, "So, where are we going?" We spent the next ten minutes repeating the scenario in various ways until they understood that each situation should end with the kids running the other way and telling me or another known-to-them-adult.

Needless-to-say, Madeline awoke screaming at least twice last night. Even so, I started lesson two today: "If a man you don't know comes up and tells you his cute kitten is lost and asks you to go with him to find it, would you go?"

Without hesitation she replied, "Oh sure!"

ARGH! Back to the role playing we go!

Tomorrow's lessons will include ice cream and cake....and maybe bunnies!

3. Becoming (married to) God 

For typical, healthy individuals, there are only a few moments that make you feel a bit God-like. I would put childbirth and the very creation of children right up there. And, if you play your cards right, the results may just put you right up there with God.

"Mom, when you die, do you still have feelings?" Aidan asked.

"Um, do you mean can you still physically feel things?" I asked back.

"Yeah," he replied. 

"Nope, once you are dead, you don't feel things anymore," I said, relieved that the answer was a pretty straight forward one.

"Why not?" Aidan asked. (Darn it.)

"Well, because when you die, your body rests in peace and no longer feels anything," I said, opting not to go into details about the cessation of electrical activity in the brain and other such things. 

"Do you get to take your body with you to heaven?" he asked on.

"Well, now that is a good question. I don't think you get to take your body with you but some people think you will one day have your body back," I said. "But really Aidan, we don't know what happens when we die. No one knows actually."

"Well, God knows what happens," Aidan told me.

I asked, "Well, are you God?" 

"No," he said.

"Am I God?" I asked.

"No," he said again. 

I was about to say, "well, then we don't know what happens, do we" when Lily chimed in. 

"No Mommy, you aren't God," she said. "Daddy is."

To which Madeline responded, "No, daddy isn't God, he's just Jesus."

As Larry the Cable guy might say: Lord forgive me for that and bless the pygmies in New Guinea.

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