Gratitude often comes to us in ways we don’t anticipate – the kindness of strangers, the unsolicited help of another person, an endeavor that we couldn’t ever foresee how much good it would bring to our lives. At Scratch and Peck, gratitude pops up when a coworker steps in to help solve an elusive mechanical problem or when one of us is having a bad day and receives an anonymous gift of chocolate or a pastry to cheer us up. We feel it when one of our farmers who uses our feeds for his chickens gives us a free dozen eggs, just because. Perhaps you see our feeds simply as a way to ensure your chickens get fed, but we see a much larger picture. We see customers who are passionate and dedicated to their families, their animals, and their food system, and that is a level of gratitude we could have never anticipated when Scratch and Peck first started.
We wondered if any of you had unanticipated gratitude when you got into chicken keeping. Because we’re fortunate to be a company that can simply pose questions like that to our customers, and have you avidly respond, we did. Once again, you did not disappoint. Below are three stories that were shared with us. Stories that touched us, that we can relate to, and that we’re sure many of you can relate to as well.
Thank you to each and every one of you for supporting the commitment that we have made to organic agriculture, for making us smile, laugh, and yes, sometimes even cry, with your stories, and for working toward big change.
[Chickens] saved my life. I was stuck at home, fighting chronic pain, but they needed me to get up every morning and feed them, let them out, care for them. There were days I didn’t have the desire to care for myself anymore but I always wanted to care for them. There were days when I had to sit in their run and rest to have the energy to get back to the house or just sit and cry with them where no one could see me. They didn’t mind, and they always seemed to know how they could help. They aren’t ‘just chickens’ they are patient friends, therapists, confidants, nurses and comic relief. – Melanie B.
Christmas Joy came into my life at four days old and only two days after my husband passed away. It was six days before Christmas 2014. My heart was grieving and this baby chick filled the need I still had to nurture and hover over, like I had done for my husband for a year as I slowly watched the effects of Parkinson’s take him from me. Christmas Joy slept in my pajama top every night because I couldn’t leave her under a heat lamp when I knew she needed to be under a mama’s wing. She’s a house chicken who enjoys all the benefits of free ranging and dust bathing. I want to give her the best life I can and that includes the best chicken food available – Scratch and Peck. – Susie
I’m thankful for my chickens because they provide me with comedic relief. I have anxiety, but I used to scoff at the idea of any kind of therapy animal that wasn’t a dog. But I totally get it now. When I have a rough day, I go sit outside with them (sometimes with a bit of wine) and watch them run around while the sun sets. Way better than any medication I’ve ever tried. We acquired our first chickens when we bought our house and decided to try our chicken keeping. Now I can’t imagine life without them! – Sam B.