My chicken love started circa 1979 with a lil' banty named Top Notch. We had a little flock but she made the biggest impression. She lived in the house and laid eggs in my mom's shoes. My brother and I played with her like she was a regular kid. One day we made her a cinder block pen on the front porch and one of the bricks fell on her neck seriously disrupting her central nervous system. Naturally, I blame my brother.
That love resurfaced sometime this year on my way to work. I drive by a small coop with a varietal flock of hens that wander freely. I am fascinated by their silly scritching and scratching, that they all seem to get along and that they never cross the road.
Talking my husband into it was the hard part. Once sufficient time had past (and i was still bothering him about it) and I had passed the "Chicken Edition: So You Want To Be A Chicken Owner" test he did stump me with one question: "Do they chickens need to go to the vet?". I got my way and with any luck one will lay a golden egg.
I chose breeds based on ability to deal with confinement and that wouldn't either turn to ducks or grow moss on their feet during the northwest winters. In March 2009 I brought one buff orpington and one barred plymouth rock home.