Remembering Blanche

There is never an easy way to write about death. I had shared earlier this year how Blanch’s health was not good. Since then she has had her ups and downs.

Warm days were the best for her. She would sit in the sun and would feel better. Lately though, that didn’t seem to help as much. She spent more and more of her time to herself and sleeping.

She stayed up in the coop Easter Sunday morning and didn’t come down for breakfast. She just slept, breathing slowly.

When I returned home from Easter worship service, I found she had passed away in her sleep. I had felt it’s what would happen while I was away, when it was just Blanche and Pearl together.

When I picked her up, I found she had lost even more weight these last few days, but her feathers were still pure white, just as white as the Easter lilies had been in church, maybe just a bit more in the afternoon sunlight.

I wrapped her in a piece of cotton quilt batting. It was soft and protective. There really was no reason to hurry. We all took our time saying our “good-byes” to Blanche.

She is buried next to the spot where I like to sit with my chickens in the evening, under the camellias next to the coop where we sit and enjoy each other’s company.

When it is time, we will plant white Easter lilies beside her in the garden next to the lunaria (also called honesty) growing there now. The lilies just seem right for her, though I can’t imagine them being as white and as pure as her feathers were when she would stretch them out in the sun.

Blanche was a good friend. She was so patient and kind towards Pearl, no matter how annoying she got. And she did get annoying! On Blanche’s not-so-good days, Pearl would tell her, “Get up! Get up! It’s time to play!” Blanche would always do her best.

From the time she hatched, Pearl had adored Blanche and was almost always at her side as a sister and a friend.

Out of the kindness in her heart, Blanche struggled to stay with us for as long as she could. She did that for Pearl’s benefit. She knew how lost Pearl would be without her.

We will always remember and love Blanche. She taught us so much.

My Life With Blanche showed me every day the meaning of “love is patient.”

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My Life With Gracie…On Giving Patience

My Life With Gracie...On Giving Patience

Chickens and gardens go together…well, sorta, kinda, in a way.

They are great at scratching up weeds…but they can also scratch up and eat your seedlings.

They are great at digging in your soil…but they tend to just dig in one spot like a crater, not in a row. It would be nice if they worked like little tilling machines, but that isn’t going to happen.

Still, it is enjoyable when I’m preparing a new planting bed with some chicken helpers. Of course we have completely different objectives. I want to prepare the soil for seeds and seedlings. They want to find earthworms and bugs.

Chickens understand food really well. It’s like there are only two things in life: “food” and “not food.” Well, that’s not totally correct.

In their minds, it’s probably more like: “food” and “not quite food yet, but almost.” I get the feeling they would do just about anything to get the “not quite food” to become “food” as quickly as possible.

Chickens are quite impatient with garden crops. They are positively sure every cucumber and squash and especially watermelon is for them.

Their clucking sounds a lot like, “Why doesn’t someone remove this fence for us?!? Why doesn’t someone cut open this watermelon for us?!?” If I let them, they would eat every leaf off of the watermelon plants before the watermelons they love had time to grow and ripen.

To tell the truth, I’m often just as impatient as my chickens when it come to some things and perhaps even more impatient! There are times when I think patience just might be the greatest gift I can give…or receive.

My Life With Gracie convinced me patience is one of the hardest but most valuable gifts you can give.

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My Life With Gracie...On Giving Patience