Chicken Run

Published on Mon, 07/28/2014 - 10:40am

It seems like life speeds up this time of year. After a winter of hibernation and a sludgy, muddy spring, suddenly May is here—bringing warmer weather and a ramp-up in activities. Not only are there graduations, confirmations, and cookouts, May is our busiest birthday and anniversary month. We are constantly on the go.

With constant demands on our schedule, there is something especially frenzied about the final ten minutes before heading out the door. I’m packing the diaper bag, convincing our oldest daughter to go potty before we leave, filling sippy cups, turning off the coffee maker—all while running down my mental checklist to make sure I don’t forget something important.
My goal? Get everyone dressed and out the door so we can make it to the “fill-in-the-blank” on time. And, if at all possible, avoid turning around because something forgotten back at the house.  
Sometimes the ten minutes of borderline-lunacy as the four of us try to get out the door reminds me of our chickens.
Our chickens love having free range of the farm. All day long they wander around, picking through the grass, scratching at the dirt—doing their chicken thing. However, every evening they make the pilgrimage back to their coop where we lock them up, safe and secure for the night.
By morning, they’re raring to go. It’s as if they post a look-out—I swear the chickens know when I’m coming to open the coop door. With every footstep, I hear the birds cackle and screech with added volume and excitement. By the time I’m at the coop, they sound like crazed shoppers in front of a department store on Black Friday.
Or like me and the girls trying to leave the house.
I let the coop door swing open. In an instant, they’re off—the chickens literally bolt out the door. One after the other, sometimes two squeezing through the small opening at once, as if being the last one to hit the dooryard means they miss out on buying a flat screen TV at 85 percent off. It’s so funny to watch. Then, as soon as they realize they’re outside, they slow way down and just start enjoying their freedom.
As hectic as it may feel to leave home, it’s good to remember the chaos of getting ready to go doesn’t last forever. Soon, we’re on our way, enjoying the beautiful weather and all the fun activities that happen this time of year.