True stories of a small flock of remarkable individuals -- and other critters.

Tuesday, February 26, 2013


I love to draw cats. 
Cats are really just a bunch of circles and triangles. 

Meet Pekoe.


Pekoe is two circles, and two triangles.

Okay now. 
To draw a chicken, you first draw a cat: 
Next, you have to decide whether you really want to draw a chicken.
Whichever route you take, you're pretty much there.

Chickens are made up of a bunch of circles and triangles, just like cats. 

Marky is, too, for that matter.  
But don't tell him I said so.

You can do a quick sketch, 

or you can spend some more time with that pencil.

Here's my elegant Daisy.

There. She's shaping up.

And next, we have a nice Lucy shape:

Don't forget the flip-side of the chicken :

What's up...?

If you're getting discouraged, look for an easier subject:

And if you're getting chicks this spring,

look for those circles: 

Fun thing about chicks and Silkies ---there are no lines... 

Just fluff.

Grab a pencil and give it a try! And then share your sketches on my Scratch and Peck Facebook Page.

Happy sketching!


Saturday, February 9, 2013

Lucy's Last Straw

Frigid winters are fine with Lucy.
(find Pigeon in this picture)
It's the snow that she can't stand. 
Lounging on one of the 2X4's that crisscross her snowy chicken-yard, Lucy soaks up the sun while her toes stay warm and dry.  

Because Lucy isn't very mobile, I check on her a couple of times a day, bringing fresh warm water and a few treats that I scatter around for all the ladies.   

From her perch Lucy stretches to reach those precious peas. 

And from her perch Lucy watches Daisy vacuum up every last one of them.
Lucy sits up calmly, utters a resigned "Oooh," and resumes her sunbathing. 

When she does choose to make a move, Lucy tends to stagger straight forward on her weak legs. Her turning mechanism isn't so good, and she can't shift into reverse at all.
Last summer when she got stuck between the watering can and the wall, Lucy had no choice but to wait there. Eventually I noticed that she was missing and after a brief chicken hunt I found her and set her free.

I checked the nest box, the dog house, I peered frantically into the forsythia and the rhododendron.
"Luuuucy", I called.

Lucy answered.

I guess that bin had been lying on its side and she happened to stumble headlong into it. I don't know how long she had been waiting in there. She squinted up at me, then stood and slowly hobbled away.

In every situation she gets into, Lucy is a model of patience and composure.

So this morning after our big snowstorm I was surprised to hear Lucy fussing furiously in the henhouse.

I thought I had done a pretty good job of plasticizing and weatherproofing the coop, but my handiwork was no match for the blizzard. 

I dug my way to the door and pried it open to find a couple of inches of snow inside the coop. 

Lucy was livid.

The other ladies had bravely trotted down the ramp to investigate their snow-laden coop, but Lucy refused to budge.  

I offered her a raisin, but she just sat there and ranted.  
It took six raisins to get her down the ramp. 
I tidied up the coop and dusted the snow off the perches, but Lucy just raved on.

I've never heard such profanities. 
I guess everyone has their breaking point, and the blizzard of 2013 was Lucy's.