Friday, September 9, 2011


If you know us, or if you have stopped by this blog before, then you probably know we have quite a few living creatures around the Yankee & Peach abode.

Last time I checked, we're currently a family of 13, and that number will be moving up to a total of 14 when the little lion man gets here.

We get the funniest reactions from people when they first learn that we have chickens at our house. Typically, their responses are a mixture of surprise (Chickens?! Really?!), a little bit of confusion ("Where do you keep them? In the basement?"), and often some piqued interest in the hens' actual purpose  ("Wow, can I get some eggs when they start laying?).

Hi, my name is Thelma. I have a twin sister named Louise.
I enjoy  corn, chicken scratch, mealworms, all sorts of plants, and pecking at your toes if you wiggle them near me.
I also like pulling Evie's flower hair clips out of her hair
and making her chase me around to get the clips back.

I know there are some bonafide city-loving folks who think we are crazy. But I also know that there are a lot of city dwellers and suburban residents who truly want (or miss having) open green space and animal life around them.   I know I do.

I also realize that the Yankee & Peach family is the very definition of wanna-be suburban farmers. (Not that our few pets really count as livestock in my opinion.)  If my grandfather was still alive -and if I had the cajones to tell him that I considered myself a "farmer"-  he'd probably just laugh and shake his head at me. That man actually was a farmer.

But, every so often someone tells me "Gee, I wish we could have chickens at our house." 

And I usually reply with a rambling answer of, "Well, you can! I mean, as long as you have just a few of them. Not a big farm or anything.... I promise it just takes a little effort and some creative planning to find a spot for them. Of course, you have to feed and water them, take care of them, and clean up after them - but they are really good garbage disposals on their own! It's not hard at all..."
I lose them about the time I say "you have to clean up after them." And then their eyes really glaze over when I start talking about building a coop and the recycling and fertilizing that we do.  

Well, yeah... anything you want to keep ALIVE and HEALTHY is going to take a little bit of effort, people!

Nope, they don't live in the basement. Just a well-drained patch of soil that is relatively sheltered from the elements and they have their very own coop.

During a recent web surfing expedition, I found a neat posting that confirmed my suspicions that there really are city people who are capable of "blooming where they are planted." 
There's a young couple in Belgium who took over the fifth floor and roof of a former factory. 
They literally have a mini-farm..... On a roof..... Of a building in the city of Antwerp...
Yup, those are live sheep. On a factory rooftop.

I would expect to see this out in the countryside...
not on a rooftop in Antwerp!

Hmm... not sure about the smell coming into the house.
But I guess that would provide incentive to keep the barn exceptionally clean!

The engineer side of me wants to know every detail about the preparation process. How much reinforcement did they have to put underneath the barn and grass areas? What are the logistics involved with hauling sheep up to a roof, or making sure that the chickens don't fly over to the neighboring buildings?
Any way around it, it seems to work for them!

Sadly, I seriously doubt this rooftop farm would ever be accepted in downtown Atlanta. I'm sure a neighbor would complain or the building authorities would step in and freak out over every single detail.

But I think this also shows that you if have the energy, the inspiration, and the ability to think creatively, then you can pretty much have the life you want anywhere you want it.

We don't like paparazzi, lady.
Put the camera down.
Every time I think we are just posers who don't even come close to qualifying as real farmers, I'm reminded of how happy the pets make us and it doesn't bother me as much.  

Yes, we realize our hens haven't laid a single egg yet, but already the girls have provided hours of entertainment to Miss Evie and her parents.

And when our hens finally do lay an egg, we'll be sure to shout it from our own rooftop! 

(They are only four months old, we're hoping for early Spring 2012!)

They'll be none of that, thank you very much.

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