This Place is Going to the Birds

Yesterday morning I went out to feed the chickens, and there atop the chicken coop perched a friend I hadn’t seen for a couple of months.

The peacock is back!

I offered him some chicken food, meant for laying hens, but I figured it wouldn’t set him to laying.


This peacock roams the neighborhood, and I hadn’t seen him for a couple of months. Seeing him, though, tail intact and beautiful, I wondered if perhaps he, like my hen, Blonde, had been molting.  Blonde, looked as though she had been attacked by a mountain lion, no tail, bald in spots, pin feathers showing. Maybe neither he nor she wanted to be seen in that condition.

Now both are beautiful–new feathers, happy countenance.

Lookin’ good.

You probably read my peacock story, about the first day I saw him here at the empty house before we moved in last December. He was sitting on the fence outside a bedroom window

I had brought boxes of dishes from the other house. I was washing cupboards, putting dishes away, filling the glass display cupboard with items I had collected over the years. and as I poked through the rooms I saw out a bedroom window, sitting on the fence,  a peacock.

I was beside myself, calling our dog: “Sweetpea, come look!” She came, she looked but thought I had gone bonkers.  (Yeah, I knew what she was thinking.) “But, Sweetpea, this is my totem animal.”

Can you imagine? This is the third peacock I have seen associated with a new home. One in Riverside California, One in Marcola, Oregon, and here in the sleepy little town of Junction City–not a place I would expect to see a peacock.

I would never have thought it.

Blonde has recovered from her molting where she lost her tail and three-quarters of her feathers but look at her now—Isn’t she beautiful?

The three baby chicks I acquired last October are grown up birds now.

I’m afraid I goofed on these chicks for they are skittish and not tame as my other two hens were. Harriot and Blonde would come and sit on my lap. Especially, Harriot, the hen who laid the green egg, but alas, she disappeared one night without a trace.

It could be that I didn’t hold these three baby chicks as much as I did the others. Another possibility is that these three chickens were about a week old when I got them, and they had already imprinted on each other, or learned about life— that one ought to run in the face of danger—real or imagined.

When we lived in Temecula, California, I volunteered to feed our landlord’s chickens and turkeys, for a reduced rental fee of course. The turkeys knew me and whenever I called out,  ‘Hello guys,” they answered with a chorus of “Gobble, gobble gobble.” He also had a dozen or so quail that were so tame they poured as a unit out the door when I opened it. I had to push them inside to get into their pen. Later on he got another group of quail that were so wild they fluttered and squawked and ran from me whenever I approached their pen. He had enclosed them in a little pen with a door on the top. One day I opened the door and one quail high-tailed it out of there, never to be seen again.

You are the first person I have told. Confession time.

“Sharing enhances everything you experience,”


– Robbins.

Yes, Tony, but do people want to hear it?  It is rather one-sided. But words need eyes, and that’s where you come in. I suppose every writer wonders if their words are worth reading. Are they engaging, enlightening, educational, or entertaining?

There’s the rub.

I wonder many times what I am doing here. And then Maria Forleo comes along and says, “Give your gift.”

Yes, but, what’s under that wrapper?  I’m afraid to look.

“The author & the reader know each other: they meet on the bridge of words.”–Madeleine L’Engle

  Suggestion Box,  Please go to the message box. You are a dear. Thank you. I appreciate your imput.

You Make My Day

This would taste really good covered with chocolate.”

Daughter number one had just given me a little heart-shaped morsel that was the color of chocolate but didn’t taste like it.

It was pemmican. Have you ever heard of it?

Pemmican is survival food.

It’s an old preparation used by the Native Americans, the early pioneers, and the cavalry to keep them going on long treks.

Now it could keep a backpacker going like the Energizer Bunny.

Daughter and I were attending a conference and didn’t bring a lunch—and found none that suited us, but she, being smarter than me, had a snack in her purse.

Heart shaped? From a candy mold? How deceiving, but it tasted, well, better than I expected. Okay really.

I learned of pemmican from a book called The Lost Ways by Claude Davis (Hey, is he related to my husband?), and watched a man preparing the concoction on Youtube, in a modern kitchen using all the gadgets we have at our disposal—seemed like an oxymoron.

Daughter’s pemmican began as lean hamburger, and when dry she ground the meat it in a coffee grinder, making the texture fine as a chocolate bar. (Guess I have chocolate on the brain, and I’m not a chocoholic.)

I wasn’t as smart as she when I prepared mine yesterday.

 It took me four days.

 I began with steak as I had seen the man preparing it on Youtube.

It’s a simple recipe: dried lean meat, dried blueberries, ground together and moistened with tallow to play dough consistency.

Stir up your three ingredients, place the mixture in a plastic bag or air-tight container, and that food has been known to last for 50 years without refrigeration.

Truly a survival food.

Pemmican is packed with protein, fat, vitamins and antioxidants.

(Fat will make you feel full, is essential for energy, for the brain, and the absorption of some vitamins.)

I asked the butcher to cut the steak into strips, but they were about an inch wide. I  was embarrassed to ask him to cut them smaller, and too lazy to do it myself, instead I stuck those thick strips into the food dryer.

Four days later they were still moist in the middle. I ground them, making a total mess of the kitchen, using a tiny little grinder than smeared grease, and threw shards of dried steak , looking like wood splinters, all over the countertop.

I put the ground meat in the oven for another day (at 250 degrees) and a day later it was done.

The blueberries were easy.

I bought tallow from the same butcher. It was spaghetti-fied and melted easy. After pouring off the clear oil, I gave the pan (with cracklin’s stuck to the bottom) to the dog.

Lafayette chased that pan all over the kitchen floor.

At heart, I’m a vegetarian, at body, I’m not.

Okay, this is not a food blog, but I have learned that survival seems to be the name of the game, and without food, you don’t survive.

And I know that our two-million-year-old brain has been designed to help us survive.

So, eat your food, and let’s get on with it.

The rub is that beautiful two-million-year-old brain of ours looks for what is WRONG.

No wonder fear controls it.

You know that. Look around.

But here—we’re not going into fear.

Life’s too short to suffer.

I learned from Tony Robbins that thoughts are vibrations that have been around for eons. You know those thoughts :  “I’m not good enough, I can’t make it, it’s not my fault. I’m poor, stupid and ugly.”


You think you were the first person to think such thoughts?

Nope. They’ve been through many brains before yours.

Let them pass through.

“Thanks for sharing.”

Instead, say this: “ I am a magnificent being, full of hope, joy, and happiness.”

Don’t be afraid. Say it. You are magnificent.

When you are in worry, frustration, anger, irritation, resentment, look around and find something to appreciate. This is not positive thinking. Really find something to appreciate.

I appreciate you coming here, reading this.

You make my day.

“What people really want is a masterful life, a magnificent life, which is life on their own terms.”

—Tony Robbins

Yep, sounds good to me.

Aloha (Hello, goodbye, I love you. Thank you.)

P.S. Daughter’s birthday flowers, withe Zoom Zoom appreciating them.