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BYC Member Interview - Miss Heny

Discussion in 'Family Life - Stories, Pictures & Updates' started by sumi, Jan 27, 2016.

  1. sumi

    sumi Égalité Staff Member

    Jun 28, 2011
    Rep of Ireland
    Lauren, known to BYC members as miss heny is a member that needs no introduction. One of our "old timers" and also one of our most active members, she'd been with us since January 2010. And here she is…

    1. Tell us a bit more about yourself.

    The face behind the a screen


    Well, my real life name is Lauren and I am ironically enough one of the younger older members of BYC haha. I joined it the month we moved to MS and been highly active for a big chunk of it all over the site and in GJ&F. I live with my parents, my mom retired navy and my father a marine on our small 3 acre farm (hoping to get more land soon [​IMG] ) in Noxubee county of Mississippi!
    Now, my chicken story actually started long before BYC and I was a wee lil tot in Oregon, we lived on a hill outside a town (of which name fails to come to me [​IMG] ) with our small herd of alpacas and a pair of goats we went to TSC to get 5 'hens' and 1 'rooster ...... [​IMG] to put it lightly TSC must of mixed up hens and roosters so we ended up with 5 roosters and one poor little hen! Now, when your 4-5 year old, deem little banties are like minions of satan himself so when our white phoenix decided I was a target. To put it lightly I was severely hated chickens for a long, long time.

    Timskip to our move to Virgina....

    Our time in Virgina was both a blessing and a curse, my dad was blessed to work at a awesome well paying job but we were living in a town that was a dumping ground for criminals. As time went on we hit rough times, my dad lost his job (a whole other story sadly) and he got a job that payed...but the emotional stress it put on our family was rough, that was when I started to get back into poultry, while I never owned birds there my poor 4H book my mother bought (which I still own) has look like it seen better days [​IMG]

    We moved to MS once dad was able to get a new job at the steel mill, and that is when my chicken addiction started [​IMG] same with sadly other issues. For about the first 3 houses we managed to rent six month each; and at each house we owned chickens. My first birds were barred rocks, 3 hens and a rooster if I remember correctly, and that when we went down hill [​IMG] some how, we went from 4 to about 30 chickens thanks to a order from cackle and a foolish visit to the farm store that year. We had Old english, Dominques, Lavankers (I know I so did not spell that right!) and a couple EE. When we had to move from there we got ride of most of the birds but a few of the Dominques and we developed our flock at house two.. Now, y'know what is the funniest thing in the word? Being the girl chasing her birds who got out of the chicken pen in the middle of town, providing the cityfolk free entertainment for the week.

    Anyways! We lived there and moved...AGAIN to house/trailer...That when for me life wasn't so pleasant again.

    When we first moved to MS, my mom forced me to 4H, a program of which has many wonderful traits...and not so many nice ones. We got into horses and livestock and joined the local horse club, and the person who ran it was my idol, I adored her greatly. It was when we stopped being mindless followers when life went down hill. Now, then I was a young teen, a girl who moved so many times she was frightful of setting roots, of not easily opening to others and for that reason this hit me hard, very, very hard. This, woman started to spread lies about me and my family in the 4-H system. She openly bullied me, same with her daughter and her 'friends'. They held no mercy and as a young teen...that was devastating. To know at every 4H functions lies were spread about you, that the reason why none of the kids went near you because one person painted you as some demon..

    We went to our agents and got no help because she brought in the numbers, and it was devastating, but in this darkness I began to focus on something good, dairy goats. In MS at that time and place poultry shows were not really done, heck there was one at state for over thirty years, so I went to the second animal that I adored, goats. I started to show goats in 4H and became bless and found a good outlet in all the darkness; and thanks to that I now own,show,breed, and milk show Lamanchas.

    But, of course the damage done by this woman was there, and still now I combat the depression, the pain, and the trust issue that...person gave me in many ways. Thankfully Karma struck and she was charged with animal abused and left 4H, but her stain did not. Thankfully though something really awesome happen at our state fair...The First poultry show in thirty years, there I met people so friendly, so gentle I felt welcome there. Over the last few years i have had silkies, sebrights, and a rosecomb. Yet I wanted something...different, something rare so I started researching... And found about Kraienkoppe.

    Introduced to thanks to DTChickens I got my first rooster from him and began to work on the bantam variety, and for 2 years after alot of bad luck I am actually very close,just needing more hens and hopefully soon some help [​IMG] but, while they are my main project a couple more appeared... [​IMG]

    First was being given some seramaXgam mixes which have been more or less self breeding into some....breed I call sergame haha, and my business project. Black Swedish hens, having bought my first pair I fell straight in love and am busy acquiring more to work on twofold projects, preserving the breed and using the culls plus silkies to breed meat birds for the Asian market next year.

    Now, to top this ALL off our farm (of which the name is ATM is in toss up of Purple Pixie Farms or Fairy Fart Farms) manages to get 4 hogs (two for 4H) 15 dairy goats, 4 anacona ducks, about a dozen silver fox rabbits, 5 dogs, and 2 cats [​IMG] nto including I am going to be working on professionally showing cattle for a local farmer (and will be adding a heifer to the mix on the farm soon!) and to make matters even more fun I am homeschooled planning on taking vet tech courses online!

    2. Why and when did you start keeping chickens?
    Well, my story really did tell a light part, but I might add some detail no? It was in... 2010 we got our first birds as you know, and really at the time it was for eggs tasty...tasty eggs[​IMG] but, as time went on my addiction became worse to my mother's horror. Around 2012 I started to do the poultry chain project in 4H, which you either grew out 20 Layer type birds or 20 meat type from select hatcheries. Combing raising, feeding, and keeping detail record 4Hers raise them from may to October when the state fair goes on. When that comes around we pick our top 6, bath them and bring them up! We are questioned on our knowledge of the shots given and basic info why. Now, the reason why this is the biggest growing project is really simple... What kid wouldn't like to win a grand plus getting 6 birds sold off?

    Anyone in 4H or has done 4H knows very well how high buyers will pay at times. Anyways as much as I didn't like it promoted commercial chicken raised this led to a gate way for many kids, APA/ABA showing, actually if it wasn't for this I am highly doubtful MS would be having such a quick growing of poultry loving youth in MS now! And of course with those wins one could start off a nice flock for show haha. For me? I saved that money to help buy more goats, it wasn't really till this year I actually began to settle down and focus on my goal, my dream.

    Around my first time doing poultry chain a old man went to our second officially county livestock show, he was friendly, kind and a poultry person...one could guess what happened when we met [​IMG] after just a few hours of talking between me showing he invited me to his little place (parents came first) and that were I got a handful of black and self blue sport OEGBs to call my own. He used to show them but as he aged he just started to breed for enjoyment so they aren't the best quality but they are still very dear to my heart.

    Like many, many members when I saw Cemani and Swedish hens I feel in love, but never thought I could own one any time soon...Until a breeder was selling young pairs for a cheap price for them ( $200...is cheap right? [​IMG] ) and the minute I opened that box...I fell in love [​IMG] that when I knew that with my Kraienkoppe and OEGBs I was gong to work on those darlings, I will admit my first pair isn't perfect but you know what? Someone must start somewhere. I hold plans of gathering 'perfect' birds to add to my dear flock of course [​IMG] and I hold a distinct goal for the culls.

    When I got my Silkies from TSC this last year I go alot of roosters, and if anyone knows anything about the asian culture they know that black skin birds are good sells to them, and that what I did. I knew for a fact that stew was gonna be their endgame but it gave me a idea that I can now work with the swedish, and use their culls plus some silkies to work on breeding to fill that demand in my area of the state, and fingers cross it'll turn very profitable!

    Of course, like normally any person who gets into chickens we normal stray off to the waterfowl, and thanks to my mom I was able to buy 4 anaconas off a breeder from this lovely site, while our hatch was bad this year none the less these birds have added great entertainment to the farm, being amusing and rather scary at time (the,the broodies [​IMG]) none the less we hope to add to our flock! And breed a good line of quality Anaconas.

    As one can tell, our breeds are oddly picked but we love them all, later on this year/next year (not much of a year left haha) we are gonna order Self blue OEGBs from cackles in hopes of developing of a beautiful line of show hens, and we are getting some Isbars to test them out...who knows maybe we'll be having a 4th breed to enjoy....

    3. Which aspect(s) of chicken keeping do you enjoy the most?

    Honestly? Its the people, I been in the horse world and the livestock world and the people there are more cutthroat (Don't even get me started on the meat goat people!) so, when I got to actually meet people from the poultry community of MS...Honestly I nearly squealed in the barn in delight, people of all ages gathering all thanks to the little chicken its...honestly one of the best people I have met and I am proud to call a friend is a poultry person himself! Yea, the birds and their antics are cute, but somethings being able to talk to people who one can connect to?

    No matter what age, that spark can be the best thing in a person's day or life.

    4. Which members of your flock, past and present, stand out for you and why?

    Wow... now this one is a hard one...and its not because I have so many I could pick...its more the emotions it bring back.

    Lilytin, a small bantam Dominique hen who gentle sweetness stole my heart, she was dear and sweet being my only hen I could every easily catch and snuggle she was my dearest bird. My birdy best friend...but our friendship only lasted a year, because she had cancer and was unable to lay the roosters picking on her lead to us being the most merciful choice. She was my first special bird.

    Next is my trio of Sergames, now they are very wild even now, I swear if I didn't feed them they would of flew the coop years ago haha. I have had them for about 4 years now, but sadly my rooster is probably not going to make it this spring, lil Napelon is developing arthritis in his legs and probably won't handle this cold winter when it does hit. I am hoping one of his sons can take over in his place because I do not hold any desire for this odd line to die. Of course reading the other parts both my swedish and my OEGBs are very special to me also, but its theses two that come straight to mind.

    5. What was the funniest (chicken related) thing(s) that happened to you in your years as chicken owner?

    Hmmm.... now this is more of a ongoing saga until I probably get out of 4H haha.

    I am well know with in the chicken chain people who run it due to my...poultry insanity. The main reasoning being of the genetic knowladge I know. The person who runs the program ran a workshop a few years back about some of the poultry things one could do in 4H and I corrected her on her genetics nicely and had people asking me about it... Well after that it been rather amusing as she will openly avoid me fearing I will ask her more chicken questions. For me what made this amusing is the whole idea of it really...I curious if anyone else every ran into such a amusement?

    6. Beside chickens, what other pets do you keep?


    Oh dear that question had to be asked [​IMG] our family have over a dozen meat rabbits, 6 dogs, 2 cats, 15 goats, 4 miniatures, 4 hogs/freezer camp visitors, and a cow I am training for a farmer to show.

    OH! also two cavies and a fish tank of about 6+ fishes...Now, to break that list down!

    Our meat rabbits are silver fox rabbits, a american breed known for its pelt and meat we are one of the few breeders in MS to actually try to breed them to true standard for the breed, so yes we do eat the suckers and boy are they tasty too [​IMG] I show then yearly at our county fair.

    The dairy goats...well yea that is obvious at this point heh, do I really need to go into detail? hmm... Well lets do some history! Lamanchas are the youngest breed in the ADGA (American Dairy Goats Association) and the only American breed in the book, they are well know for their 'earless' look that has gotten more then one city slicker look at a lamancha breeder in horror and scream "You cut their ears off?!"

    Of course, any true dairy goat breeder knows its a genetic mutation...but of course we gotta have our fun right? [​IMG] our goats have done very well in 4H shows, having won state twice with my dear doe rose [​IMG] we are hoping in a few years to go to nationals.

    Our miniature horses... well those sweet devils darlings are my little project pets. I have trained three already, one being a rescue who is now a therapy horse, and two for trails and jumps and my two new ones will get the same treatment...and if the older mare has another baby that is suspected to be happening same training. The only thing I need to learn is training to pull the cart.

    Dogs...may we skip other those? [​IMG] all of them are either mom's are dad's and two of them I hate for killing my birds....anyways!

    Cats, now I love my cats even though they are spawn of satan himself and worse then a herd of cattle in a bull shop in the morning they are cuddly and sweet, sadly both were dumped starving so they are on the smaller size then they should.

    Hogs, well as stated freezer camp, but I plan on showing two in 4H. And the cow...well she'll be hear this weekend and her full name is Sloan's Mountain Pride! and she is my pride too [​IMG]

    [​IMG] my parents warn people to not get me started on poultry. Today I'll get picture of our rabbits and goats plus the indoor fiends


    Okay on phone so I can't remember what what but here are of my two cats lighter one Shiva darker one Kali, our two new minis (Ruby the mama and ewok the baby) uhm shots of my flock minus the OEGBs plotting beneath the dead vines, and my black Swedish hens.

    Oh yes also the hogs being raised for freezer camp and 3 out of the 4 inside dogs: white thing is Fluffy, thing in the middle bindi and then the one on the fair right Bandit.

    7. Anything you'd like to add?

    Okay..free [​IMG]

    Take life by the horns and follow your dreams, no matter what (as long as it legal haha) happens. Yes, sometimes life gives a bad deck of cards, but y'know what? you'll get new ones, and at a least a few would be better then what you gave and of course you'll have those few friends that you can always trust.

    BYC has been there for both the worse and the best of times, I been around pre update and post having seen it all; but y'know what? I have people on here who are life time friends and I owe alot of what I learned about poultry to the helpful members of this site.


    Right is sam, left is wesely (sorry bad spelling) two arabians we used to own


    My mini Jolene


    My first babies [​IMG]




    Our first mix flock


    Twilight Topez our first goat in MS.


    Our first broody!


    Lil man, my first rescue mini, he was rehome and is now a therapy horse.


    A old farm baby photo, Miracle,she was a premature.


    My first horse, being boarded at the said 4H woman place, Princess sadly passed away a few year ago at age 22.


    DeDe was bought with Princess, and is ATM with a trainer.


    See here for more about the interview feature and a complete list of member interviews: https://www.backyardchickens.com/t/905602/introducing-vip-member-interviews/0_30

  2. Kusanar

    Kusanar Crowing

    Apr 30, 2014
    Roanoke area, Va.
    I have horses too, if you want, you can PM me and I can help you with learning how to train the mini's to pull.
  3. N F C

    N F C phooey! Premium Member Project Manager

    Dec 12, 2013
    Thanks for doing an interview and sharing your story! I enjoyed the photos of the mini horses and other animals [​IMG]
  4. miss heny

    miss heny Genetic Expert in learning Premium Member

    Thanks! I have my farrier who once we move agreed to help us train and ATM to much mud to do anything!
  5. 3goodeggs

    3goodeggs pays attention sporadically

    May 22, 2009
    North Central Florida
    [​IMG](if you don't mind a hug from a stranger)
    That is great. The photos are wonderful.

    NO ONE who damages children is a good person, I hope Karma slapped her sideways and back again.
    Those miserable teenage memories will fade. You will remember the event and shrug it off.
    I know the feeling and just remember that the people who believed her would believe anything and good riddance to them as well.

    The good parts, the good goats, the good chickens...even the not so good dogs, those will be what lasts.
    You know who you are and where you are going,
    You will be fine.
    You have survived and you have learned that not everyone can be trusted, but you also found good people who could be.
    ....and they had CHICKENS!![​IMG]

    The best of everything to you!
  6. miss heny

    miss heny Genetic Expert in learning Premium Member

    Haha I am a hugite online ;)

    Yeup, and this saga may hit a new chapter this state fair depending on a certian male I know actions ;)
  7. Yorkshire Coop

    Yorkshire Coop Moderator Staff Member

    Aug 16, 2014
    Yorkshire, UK
    My Coop
    Hi Lauren :frow

    I have really enjoyed your interview :D It was so nice to read all about you, your animals and how you have come through some difficult times :hugs
    Your pics are just fabulous :love I have a soft spot for goats ;)

    Thankyou for sharing more about your self :thumbsup

  8. miss heny

    miss heny Genetic Expert in learning Premium Member

    NP, sorry been busy at shows and 4H!

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