My favorite Christmas gift…chickens

Photo: ©2012 George Flattery/World Vision

Photo: ©2012 George Flattery/World Vision

Our “My Favorite Christmas Gift…” series continues as World Vision staff, partners and friends share stories around World Vision’s Gift Catalog.

Today we hear from Anna Goodworth, from the Women of Vision Hartford, CT chapter.

This last spring we got 5 chickens. We had a rose-colored view of owning chickens, having watched friend get their eggs fresh from their back yard. We imagined our chickens naturally fertilizing our garden, our children carrying around our named chickens and delicious egg omelets full of nutrients. We could almost imagine our family as one with Laura Ingalls Wilder. Well, it hasn’t been all that we imagined. They were sweet when little, but one of them pecks really hard at you if you get anywhere near her. Once we heard a “cock-a-doodle-doo” from one, we soon had some rooster noodle soup. They are louder than I ever imagined and expect hate mail any day. However, they do in fact fertilize the garden….and the grass….and the walkway…which finds its way on our shoes and sometimes inside the house. Basically…they poop everywhere. These are some free-range chickens if I ever saw them begging for any treat we might give them.

Luckily we have started getting eggs (or their might have been some more noodle soup coming). And the kids love them. I love never wondering if I have eggs for a recipe. For us, this whole experience has been a bonus…one less thing to buy at the store. It isn’t anything particularly life-giving … just an experiment or idealistic attempt to be an urban farmer.

It is hard to choose what my favorite gift is in the gift catalog. I LOVE clean water…knowing it is the base of community development, a gift of life itself in so many ways and something that I take for granted everyday. I love the care for orphans and widows. Just sounds good, doesn’t it? Well – it is good. I love giving to education for teachers in our life or soccer balls for any coaches in our life. However, I think in the midst of those and many more amazing gifts to give to others (gifts that won’t end up in a goodwill pile EVER), I would say that chickens are my favorite gift this year.

Why? Because eggs are food – to eat and to sell. Because baby chicks lead to more chickens and more financial sustainability. Because it is just as fun for kids on the other side of the world as it is for my kids to care for chickens. And…I confess, that I love the comradery of someone else (even if they are on the other side of the world and surely more blessed in spirit than I), will be accidentally stepping in that stinkin chicken poop…just like me.

Give the gift of chickens today!

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