Monday, March 7, 2016

We're On Our Death Beds ( CAUTION: Proceed at your own risk. Graphic details ahead!)

A Ralph Post:

We can't have much longer left in this world. It is a proven fact that chickens are full of salmonella poisoning, and who knows what else. We have touched raw chicken time and again. I have run my hands inside of a fresh killed, raw, chicken. I have had blood all over my hands. I have had a scratch from a chicken claw on the back of my hand between kills. And I had still more chicken blood mingling with my fresh blood. No time to stop for first aid. The killing must go on. We have more roosters to kill! And what of digestive system breakage? Does that add to the danger? And the bloody nose that came from rubbing that insufferable itch with a bloody hand. We'll worry about washing the old schnauzer later. 

Don't get me wrong, we clean as we butcher and wash everything down with disinfectant when we are done, but we are not fanatical about the entire process, things do splatter.

Enough of the gory details. We have done 64 roosters and have many more to go. Meat and broth canned. The point is: Our chickens are a lot safer than what you buy at the supermarket. 

At daybreak, our flock enters the bright sunshiny world. They reenter the chicken house with the setting sun. All day long, they are roaming Gods world and exploring it's glories! They are free! They have natural dust baths in all sorts of places. They are getting into mischief. They are stopping us from working, just so we can watch their antics. Or, they have an itch that they want us to pick them up and scratch for them. And a little hugging and here and there. Both ways: them to us and us to them. 

Love makes the world go around. They give it and receive it. And we laugh! They make our world a much happier place. And we try to give them the best we can in love and care. And they sing their little songs for us/to us. All that cooing, purring, churdling, etc. They are quite vocal! They must be happy. They are always around us, with us. They go off to eat grass, etc. Then they will come back just to see what we are doing. Some are friendlier than others, just like people we know. 

I am sure they have done lots to boost our immune systems. A little bit of this bug, a little of that germ, some of that disease, here is a bacteria or virus for you. If it was warmer and we were bare footed (like we were as kids), that squishy stuff would be between our toes. It is not a “sanitary” world around here. When you pick someone up, you KNOW that they have just stepped in something and now it is on your hands, clothes. There is no running to the bathroom (while screaming) and getting the sanitizer. It might be hours before that hand gets washed. We might be dead tomorrow, but for now, we're still kicking around (healthy and happy). Our immune systems seem to be working quite well. In large part, thanks to our little friends. We have not had a cold or flu since we got here.

Go back a hundred years. (For me, it is just fifty years – in the hills of West Virginia.) Our forebears had their flocks running the yards and fields. They and their flocks were healthy. “Everyone” had a flock. Everyone had eggs and meat from that flock. 

I am sure it was around, but no one seemed to get salmonella poisoning. Why is it such a problem today? Could it be the way the “flock” is raised? Commercial, caged, anti-biotic fed. No sun light. No freedom. No happiness in their lives. Is this why they get 7 chlorine rinses while getting processed and packaged for the consumer?

Our chickens exercise! They are running everywhere.They don't have the fat like store chickens and what fat they do have is a rich yellow, full of Beta-carotene. 

They are lean. And the meat is much darker. It is muscle, like a muscle is suppose to be. And, I suspect, richer in vitamins and minerals – from their days roaming around and eating from their wild world. They are healthier and, therefore, so are we. 


  1. 64 roosters!!! Yikes!! And I was grumbling about the 13 we had one year. But they did provide us with some tasty soup. Thank you, God.

    A good post. Country living is much healthier than over-sanitized city living. Even if you sometimes step in something that seems it takes forever to get off your boot. Oh well, it will eventually wear off. ;^)

    1. Ralph and I were talking about how we have just felt better since we got here. We get "Dirty, Dusty and tired" but we feel far better. The chickens help with that. The gift of healthy meat and stock of which we are finding makes things taste so much better.Cooking rice in homemade stock makes a simple dish have flavor you don't expect. The entire process is immensely satisfying. Yes things do wear off....or drop off in the darnedest places, Ralph left a bit of our farm at Lowes the other day!;)

  2. My grandparents, my parents and even my own childhood saw very few of the diseases so prevalent now. I can't recall one classmate all throughout my school years who needed special food due to allergies. Drug your kids to keep them calm? Nope. Send them outside to play. Or find work for them to do. Mine pulled a lot of weeds, mowed a lot of grass and shoveled a lot of snow. They got dirty. Didn't hurt them one little bit. And they were rarely sick. There is something to be said for the old time ways of living.

    1. Its hard to be hyperactive when you have played outside all day or done chores around the farm or yard. The responsibility of chores was good physically and mentally. No one I remember in my school days had allergies or asthma. Few children missed school because of being sick either. Are we too clean now?

  3. whereabouts in West Virginia are you from?
    you notice the boy in the picture is a dog wallerer.
    we wallered with Butch all the time, barefoot all summer, and knees were scrubbed with a piece of pumice on saturday so mother would not be embarrassed by our knees on Sonday morning.
    most of us were stunningly healthy by today's standards.
    do you remember 'toe jam'? shocks me now, but an everyday occurrence in summer.
    i am from Cabell county, daddy from
    Lincoln county.

    1. Ralph is from the Summersville area. He had a Feist dog to run with.

  4. oh dear, poor little creatures

  5. What a glorious sight to see all that beautiful feathered-ness out your back (and front door)! And all raised with love and respect. I so agree. When you work outdoors and with livestock (healthy livestock) I think all the bits and bobs of germs and whatever build up your immune system.