February 23, 2017

Just Another Day in the Country…(sheer bedlam)

Jun21

living in the country

Often there is an idyllic image that goes along with our family homestead.

Do you envision waking up every morning to the sweet sound of chickens crooning softly? Flowers meandering in perfectly neat rows, smiling pristinely for our cutting pleasure, while our vegetable garden produces enough to supply all our needs and some to share?

And yes, don’t forget the bounty of eggs that we gather every morning. My daughter skips sweetly down the path, basket in hand to gather them…oh so, Little House on the Prairie, don’t you think?

chicken eggs in bowl

AND THEN REALITY SETS IN….

The bubble has burst on our dream like state, and my quest for balancing  beauty and bedlam comes back to the front and center of every day living.

 

When my son went to water the chickens and grab our eggs for the day (moaning the whole time), rejoicing about the privilege we have to live in the country, he opened the chicken coop to this scene.

Some one besides our chickens decided to take up residence for awhile and he wasn’t content to just eat the grass…

AHHHHHH!!! Bedlam, I tell you, SHEER BEDLAM!

Yes, our friendly neighborhood black snake wanted in on our bounty. He told me a snake was in the coop and I ran to get a picture and WHILE I TOOK THE PICTURE he opened his mouth and went for the egg.

Nothing like needing a pacemaker before your first cup of morning coffee. 🙂

IMG_9905_opt

Snakes have an amazing capacity to unhinge their jaw so that they can eat things SO much bigger than what we’d imagine could fit in their mouth, and this black snake wanted my egg for breakfast.

Well, since I am all about doing the country living thing to its finest, the boys captured him (while I affirmed their manly-hood), but not before my prissy, won’t play sports and polishes her nails on a daily basis daughter got better acquainted with him.

find a snake in the woods

It never ceases to amaze me what some of our kids will and will not do…along with the fact that sometimes I can’t believe this IS my life (said from the mom who grew up in the city/suburbs).

Gotta love my Green Acres, Country Living girl!

country girl petting snake

On behalf of all snake lovers out there…black snakes really are good snakes. You never want to kill them because they keep away all the poisonous ones, but guess what we learned? You have to relocate them a mile away from your house or they will find their way back. Who knew that the Lord made these things so darn smart. My boys carried him a few acres away and the very next morning there he was again…eating my egg (they can digest one a day). The bad thing this time? We didn’t catch him.

Anyone want to gather my eggs this morning? 🙂


Comments

  1. AHHH! i gasped when I saw those pictures! :]

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  2. Michele says:

    I will gladly watch from the suburbs! 🙂

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  3. Oh mylanta. This is one of a very few reasons I will endure winter and live in colder climates.

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  4. Ah! Your kids are so brave. I’ve lived in the country and we’ve had snakes in the yard…but it’s something I never, ever got used to. EEekkkk!

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  5. Be still my heart (literally!!). WOW! We had one about that size in our little river cabin last weekend — it was BEDLAM!! 😉
    FYI — they make a “snake repellant” in your lawn and garden section. You might want to check it out! 🙂

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  6. I love that you keep this blog real by sharing the good and bad and kind of scary. My fantasy of having a few acres and chickens has now been changed to wow I am so happy to be where I am. I’ll bloom where I’m planted and hopefully the snakes will visit someone else.

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  7. Kassandra Wood says:

    Uh-uh! No way, Jose! LOL That snake is HUGE! I was clearing out leaves this spring and found several baby snakes. Luckily for me, we didn’t find Mommy! I am thinking they relocated after I disturbed their home (under a bucket in our back yard). Kudos to your boys and to your daughter for oh-so delicately capturing him… errrr… the first time. Ha ha! And, yes. I will gather eggs in the morning as long as I get to take the boys and their cutie-patootie sister with me!

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  8. OMG! And I was screaming this weekend when the cat bought a dead bird into the house! We’re planning on keeping chickens in our backyard sometime in the future. I just hope we don’t see any snakes!

    Mary Ellen

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  9. I think we’ll wait until our kids are teenagers before moving out of town… then THEY can take care of the snakes and such. Ick.

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  10. oh my! that would scare the heck right out of me. i would have ran screaming 😛

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  11. Man, and I was thinking having my own eggs would be pretty romantic…

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  12. So I’m not afraid of snakes but I think that would still at least initially freak me out to open the door and see that snake in there. Hope you catch your egg thief soon.

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  13. That would freak me out enough never to go outside again!

    I live in the suburbs and every once in a while we do get a snake around here. 2 summers ago hubby and I went for a walk with our youngest daughter (who was in a carriage). As we walked a snake went through my husbands legs. He jumped, I saw it and ran like an Olympic sprinter down the street with the carriage (got to protect my baby you know). It took hubby a good 15 minutes to coax me up the street to go home. Needless to say, this big baby here would not go for a walk for over a month!!

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  14. Ahhhh!!! Just reading/seeing the pics made me feel the need to get my feet up off the floor…as if one would slither out from under my couch or something!! I do live in the burbs, and last summer we found 2 snakes right in our flower beds outside the doors, and my 5 year old found one this spring in our yard. I SERIOUSLY am terrified of snakes…and now have to muster up all my courage just to work in my flower beds!! Ugh…I hate snakes. Hope your problem is gone soon!!!

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  15. That thing IS HUGE! Tell me you noticed it before you went to stick your hand in there!?!

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  16. The female part of me is gasping for air out of the horrifying sight I just encountered. The homeschool mom in me is sitting here saying “How cool is that! They got to see a snake eat an egg. Those kids will never forget it and she got a picture!”. I am lesson planning (Konos planning) this week and getting really excited for school this fall. Homeschool moms…. we are a odd bunch.

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  17. Krystal, I love your response, as a child at that was home schooled and a mom that might, how right you are. But ugh, the girl in me squeals at the site of that and we do not live in the city! Yikes!

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  18. Snake lover here….so you are correct that a good ole black snake will keep away the poisenous. I would gladly give him an egg a day to keep the copperheads and rattlers at bay.

    Good luck with catching him again…and thanks for releasing him and not killing him. They even though some find nasty are a vital part of our environment. Just think of the mice and rats they kill 🙂

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  19. Yuck! I don’t live in the country, and I encounter the garden snakes in my garden all the time. Freaks me out! And I don’t have boys to relocate them!! I just run…shuddering the whole way!

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  20. You will have to take it more than a mile away! I grew up in the country and every year a black snack would make its way to the chicken coop. My dad would take it farther and farther away– say 5 miles away and the snake would be back the next year. We knew it was the same one because it had a scar on his back- we called him scar back!

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  21. Oh my goodness! The pictures make this story amazing; the jaws on that thing! I love that your little girl was all about it; she’s a tough cookie!

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  22. Noooooooooooooooooo!!!!!

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  23. Well, we have chickens and we have snakes I am sure. I’ve seen some, but not in the chicken house yet, although my husband has. I am SO afraid of them. I never gather the eggs, and this is the reason. If I encountered that snake, I would never go near the chicken house again! Black snakes are good snakes if they are far from me, and if they eat, say, mice-I hate those, too!

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  24. Seriously…I panic…I mean PANIC! When I see a garter snake in the yard..thankfully I have only seen 3 in my 8 years of living here!! I would have freaked out…God wanted me to live in MN with the cold and smaller snakes I guess….

    Way to go!

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  25. I try very hard not to swear. Especially in writing. So all I’m going to say is SHUT UP!

    And next time warn me if you’re going to show snake pictures!

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  26. Eeekks!! We have enough bedlam in our lives just “gathering” our eggs from Costco 🙂 I can’t even imagine this. I am a pretty hands-on, messy girl; but snakes cross the line with me- give me the heebie jeebies every single time. Every night I venture into the backyard barefoot I think about the potential little visitors slithering in or grass. Fortunately I haven’t seen any in 4 years now, whew!

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  27. Ummm….I am now over that whole raising chickens, fresh eggs idea I once had, sometime, A long, long, long, long, long time ago…what eggs? That’s what grocery stores are for.

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  28. Oh my Lord, I would have had a cow (lol). I can not stand the sight of snakes and there is no way I would be gathering eggs after that!

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  29. I had a black snake in with our baby chicks. I called my friend who is not afraid of snakes. She came to our farm and brought the snake out. After requesting something to put it in, I returned with a huge plastic container with a lid. She placed the snake inside. I asked where she was taking it. She said that she was taking it far enough away that it wouldn’t be a problem for us anymore. With that she got in her minivan and left. Somehow, the snake got out of the container and crawled up into her dashboard area. It was never seen again! Now, that’s a friend!

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  30. I think I would be wearing gloves the next time I gather eggs. LOL

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  31. Nice photo graphs, Realy I think all pictures make this story amazing.I had seen first time a long.. black snake or snake eggs.So i know more about black snake,
    I’ve got kids and pets. How can I keep black snakes out of my yard?

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  32. I would be completely useless if this happened to me. I cannot believe your boys (and daughter) touched the snake themselves! No way Jose!
    On the other hand, it’s so nice to be able to have fresh eggs each morning…so, worth the trade off? I think so.

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  33. My daughter (even more than my 2 boys) loooves to go looking for snakes under the rock path in our backyard but that one might freak her out a little! haha As my mom says, “You’re just making memories!”

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  34. AIYYIII!!!! You really should have disclosed that BEFORE I saw the pictures … snake phobia … like screeching snake phobia. Oh man. Hyperventilating on your behalf!

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  35. OH BOY, we have black snakes too!!! My boys JUST found one yesterday. I heard some hollering in the back yard (and instantly thought the baby had fell of the swing set) and ran back there! I hear MOM wanna see the SNAKE?? Ummm NO! LOL! And I GREW UP in the country, you THINK I would be used to them!!! They are one thing I can’t get used to!!
    And I wanted chickens when we move (back to teh country, LOL) and now I’m scared!!! 🙂
    Kristi

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