Hestand Farms

  1. lolita117
    My chicken adventure began last spring in March (2011). I got an email from TSC advertising their chick days. I then realized that I could have chickens (my fiancé and I had moved out of his parents’ house and built our own house on land that I was going to inherit from my father, whenever that time came). We had a house in the middle of our future farm with plenty of land and I decided right then "I want chickens!"

    When I made my decision I began my research. That is when I found BYC. Of course, it was love at first sight and it made me that much more excited about starting my chicken adventure. Like a lot of people who are debating or haven’t started their chicken adventure I joined BYC before actually acquiring my first baby chicks.

    I think it was a week after or so after I joined I went to TSC and bought 6 Black Australorp chicks and 2 Pekin ducks. (I was only going for chicks but couldn’t resist those little quackers.) I instantly fell in love and knew I was going to have to get more and though my idea for a coop weren’t set in stone, I also knew I was going to need a big one.
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    A couple of weeks after acquiring my first babies I had to get more. I got 4 EE’s from my local feed store.
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    . At this point I knew I had to get to work on my coop. And very soon after that I placed an order with a hatchery for 25 brown egg layers assortment, due June 20th

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    My coop went up pretty fast and it was amazing how magnetic it was. At this time, we had our garden growing beside where I knew my chicken coop was going to be built and after it went up that became a hang-out place for my dad. He loved sitting and watching the chickens and eating fresh tomatoes, watermelon, and sweet corn out of the garden.
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    All throughout last summer, my chicken coop was where you would find my dad. He would even come over when we weren’t home and just sit in the shade watching the chickens. He enjoyed me having them, because his mother had chickens and it reminded him of his youth. Oh, did I mention my dad was born in 1928? I’m just 22 but my Dad turned 83 August.11.2011. This picture of me and Daddy was took on his birthday this past year.
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    Anyways, my love attraction to my chickens was something I didn’t even expect. And now, this past summer will always be a memory I’ll cherish forever. This past December my dad got seriously ill and within 17 days my world got turned completely upside down. Within that time frame, my dad got put in the hospital and we came to find out that he had stage 4 lung cancer and was in his final stretch. We had no idea. My Daddy is/was/will always be my everything. I was truly a daddy’s little girl.

    Now that he is gone I will continue to grow and expand my farm. I already advertise my eggs as “Hestand Farms Country Eggs” and now I have bought my first bull calve and will be buying some heifers. Though, nothing will ever replace my dad I’ll always have the land he gave me.

    Also, since we shared our common ground for the love of my chickens, I know now that it will be something I’ll never be without. I placed another order to expand my flock to over 60. I feel like my chickens give me peace, even when I feel my world has crumbled around me. And I know this summer will be hard with Daddy not around, but I know I can sit beside my chicken coop, watch my girls, and always remember him.

    So here are some pictures of my chickens. I love taking pictures of them.
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  1. CedarCluck
    Thank you for sharing your story with us. I think its so amazing how you connected with your father that way, and its something I envy. I wish my father and I could have that type of relationship so he could see the life I have built for myself and of course my chickens! I have to avoid the supply stores in the spring otherwise I might come home with ducklings and more chicks too!
  2. Whittni
    Before my family moved out into the country -I'd never even thought about owning chickens.
  3. cheermom
    In addition to my above comment...stangely I had a little tiff with my dad yesterday regarding Easter events....we didn't hang up on good terms. I will be calling him shortly to put it behind us...I was reminded by your article how precious our time is with our families. Thank you.
  4. cheermom
    In case you weren't aware, you have a gift for writing. I was very moved by your story, and it's obvious what a wonderful daughter you are. Good luck with your livestock...your chickens are lovely!
  5. Chick1043
    I started raising chickens same time as you and found BYC same time as you! That's pretty cool!! Sorry about your dad! :)
  6. chicktalk1
    Sorry for the loss of your dad!
    Your pictures are beautiful !
  7. jody78
    thank you for sharing!
  8. ratRose58
    Thank you for sharing this, it is a truly perfect rxample that animals don't have to be cats,hamsters, dogs,to have such a wonderful bonding experience, that can be chickens. Thank you.
  9. lcatty
    Yes, thanks so much for sharing your story with us. Your flock- and your land- are very beautiful.
    God Bless you, your family, and your farm.
  10. judyki2004
    Beautiful Story, full of love, may God Bless You & Your farm , your birds are gorgeous!!!
  11. teach1rusl
    I enjoyed reading your beginnings with chickens (and your coop looks awesome!). I love your dad's appreciation of them, and am sorry he's no longer with you. You have some lovely hens :)
  12. SoOregonJoni
    Thank you for sharing a special part of your life with us. Your wonderful memories of your dad will live on with you, and I am sure you share his love with your chickens all the time. Beautiful pictures! You are young and beautiful, may your life be all you hope and dream it to be. Many blessings to you.
  13. addie08
    This was such a beautiful story. Thanks so much for sharing.
  14. pullus mater
    Beautiful pictures and a beautiful story. I am so sorry you lost your dad when you are still so young (not that it is ever easy). I hope you find true peace on the land he gave you!
  15. gabirder
    What a wonderful story. Thank you for sharing. Blessings to you.
  16. lolita117
    Thank you everybody, so much. I logged on to BYC this morning and seen a picture of my girls on the top banner and was excited about getting to share my story. I'm now currently in the process of making the area where my dad used to sit by my coop all fixed up and soon I will have a special spot that I can always cherish. Thanks again, for everybody's kind words.
  17. browneyegurl35
    Sorry to hear about your dad, please take comfort in knowing that he enjoyed the time he had in your backyard with the chickens and the garden.
    Take care
  18. fultzie
    as a godly man.i truely felt every word you wrote. I was moved by your story , for i too have a father that is up in years and your story took me back a few year..(for im no spring chicken myself ) :) the times ive had on this earth with my father are priceless..we buillt a house together and though i do not live in the house any more ..i can remember the good times we had as i pass the house ..so i know you will injoy your time out by thee ol'e coop ..and when your girls are coo'ing around you might even just maybe even here that voise you've heard for some time .."The girls look lovely today my daught" god bless you , and your journeys here on this side
  19. lindseyloo
    Truly enjoyed your story. Your father looked like the sweetest man alive. Thank you so much for sharing. : * ]
  20. ChristinaMc
    That is such a wonderful story. It is such a blessing to have that connection with your dad and your chickens. Thank you for such a great read!
  21. ginbart
    I'm so sorry about your dad, I know how you feel. Your chcickens look great and some day your children will be having a good time with them to. God willing.
  22. Lothiriel
    Congratulations, we've chosen one of your chicken pics for the Picture Of the Week. Thanks for posting your chickens to our "My Chickens" pages! You can find more info about our POW here: BYC POW process
  23. lorijohnson823
    Your farm is beautiful! I'm sure your dad was very proud.
  24. BantamoftheOpera
    I'm so sorry about your Dad, but I'm glad that your flock will keep his memory alive

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