We are starting out the year 2017 with an Artic blast, according to the weatherman. He really would not have had to tell us this fact. A couple steps out of the door this morning and it was very apparent that it was beyond cold outside.
The radio kept telling me all day that is was -2º outside today. I have no idea if we made it above zero because I quit listening, turned some music on and did some baking. I avoided going outside unless it was absolutely necessary. Even my husband did not linger long outdoors today…..then you know it’s cold!
It was necessary to go outdoors again late afternoon to feed the girls and make sure they had all gotten safely back into the coop for the night. The last couple nights I have two birds that do not seem to want to go in for the night. I have to head out, flashlight in hand and go looking for them.
As I was crossing the yard, searching for the two renegade girls, it occurred to me that the birds who live in this part of the country are amazingly resilient. They have to deal with hot humid weather in the summer and numbing cold in the winter. (I would say finger-numbing cold; but they don’t have fingers and for some reason their scaly little feet don’t seem to be bothered by the cold.)
The chicken coop that my girls sleep in every night, reminds me of their resilience. It is not insulated and is cold during the winter. I am always glad for the sunny winter days that give a little solar heat through the south-facing windows.
Chickens are really pretty smart. (Even with a walnut sized brain.) They have learned the lesson that they can rely on each other to get through cold dark times. It might just be instinct; but when I see them huddled close together on their roost at night I think there is a lesson in there somewhere for all of us.
The cold weather also brings challenges in how to best care for the girls. For years we struggled with how to keep the water thawed in their waterer. I finally turned to Pinterest to see if I could find any good ideas…..I did!
I showed the idea to my husband and he put one together for me last year. (He’s good like that.) I now have a do-it-yourself heated chicken waterer . For those of you who own chickens and live in areas that have freezing temperatures you may want to give this a try. http://www.the-chicken-chick.com/2011/11/make-cookie-tin-waterer-heater-under-10.html
It always amazes me to realize how many life lessons I can learn if I just open my eyes to the things around me. I have found there is a lot to be learned from chickens. Some of it funny and some of it serious.
Watching my little flock stay warm on a cold winter night has taught me that it is good to rely on those around you. Trying to do life alone is way harder than it has to be……especially when there are others around you just waiting to bless you and be blessed by you.
9 Two are better than one,
because they have a good return for their labor:
10 If either of them falls down,
one can help the other up.
But pity anyone who falls
and has no one to help them up.
11 Also, if two lie down together, they will keep warm.
But how can one keep warm alone?
12 Though one may be overpowered,
two can defend themselves.
A cord of three strands is not quickly broken.
Ecclesiastes 4:9-12 (NIV)