Monday, December 14, 2009

Playing farmer

Friends of ours in a neighboring town occasionally go away and ask us to pet sit. Except their pets include a lot more than their three friendly cats. They also have a goat, two sheep, a dozen chickens, a half dozen peacocks, a flock of guinea fowl, two geese, and a couple of turkeys (I might be forgetting something?)

I have a blast doing this! I've never lived on a farm. I've never taken care of "farm" animals, even though I did aquatic animal care for twelve years, this is much different. My husband and I only own 0.06 acres so unless we move we'll never be able to own more than a few chickens and never a goat or sheep and especially peacocks as they are very loud.

I think it's a great deal: we take care of their animals, get to play farmer for a few days and can take home all the fresh eggs we want. If you've never eaten an egg straight out of the nest box you are missing out. The yolks are impossibly yellow and the flavor is out of this world!

So I will stop typing and share some fun pictures. This is the goat, he eats everything and tried to eat my camera:

I think this turkey is just beautiful. At first they seem quite ugly but just look at those colors! As soon as you walk by them they puff out all their feathers and put on quite a display:

This photo isn't great since it was cold and my hands were shaky, but these are some of the guinea fowl (they keep them for tick control) and there's one of the big male peacocks in the rear center. Have you ever seen a peacock fly? He flew clear across the paddock to perch in a tree and it was very impressive:

This is the last clutch of eggs we got. The brown ones are from the chickens, our friends say the big white ones are also chickens since the geese shouldn't be laying until next year but I'm not sure. They are HUGE! Twice the size if not more than the chicken eggs:

I'm sure we'll get a call again soon for some more pet sitting. Which is fine with me. Ever since I left my job at the Aquarium I do miss taking care of animals. Hopefully some day I'll be able to keep chickens, it will be a great learning experience for my daughter when she's old enough to help with the care. She loves going to the "farm" now, although in the recent cold weather I've had to bundle her up pretty tight. But, I can still hear the giggles through all the layers as she imitates the animals.


  1. It does sound like a blast. Your daughter is adorable...I have xray eyes to see through all the layers. lol

  2. That would be so much fun, I love all the critters in your care. Those two eggs are huge, if a chicken laid those it had to hurt.

  3. Hi Kate, you're babe seems like enjoying the farm stay. Did you try to boil those eggs? It looks delicious to me. Have fun and enjoy!

  4. I get the most organic eggs I can from the store, but the yolks are anemic colored. I've seen what eggs just laid like those are like, and there is no comparison. Just GREAT pictures, Kate. It's so good to have you back!! I didn't know how much I missed you till you started posting again.

  5. What fun that must be. I have to say though that I have been conditioned to the anemic eggs we get in the grocery store. The farm fresh eggs look strange to me and I have to force myself to eat them.

  6. cool! you're so lucky and I'm so jealous! you should try to smuggle some of them home with you... sure your friends would never even notice if the goat was missing, would they?


  7. Lynn: it is a blast! and luckily Lizzie didn't seem to mind being in all those layers :)

    SQ: the guys who own the farm swear they're chicken eggs, but I agree with you! ouch!

    AL: we've eaten the eggs fried, scrambled, in an omelet and hard boiled, they are yummy no matter what we do to them :)

    DJan: you are so sweet!it is nice to be missed, I am going to try very hard to keep up with blogging despite being exhausted and unmotivated. I also don't get why even the organic eggs from the store are anemic looking, must be the feed, true free-range chickens eat a lot more protein in the form of bugs, grubs and whatever they can catch.

    RT: I admit, the first time a cracked open a fresh farm egg a few years ago it was a challenge to eat it without cringing. It is sad how conditioned we've become to factory eggs.

    Jon: sometimes I think the owners would love for us to take the goat home....they always say how grumpy he is, and he's real good at escaping too!

    thanks for reading everyone! -kate

  8. It sounds like you had a blast doing the pet sitting. Too bad you don't live closer, I could use a good's hard to find someone to feed the buffalo & watusi!

  9. Hi Lisa! You have NO idea how much I would LOVE to farm sit for you sometime! Too bad we're a few states away!


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