The chicken thing started with the shame of being too lazy to compost, letting ourselves get carried away with what our food scraps could do for us. It wasn't enough to get some fertilizer out of the deal, not when you can have eggs, too! We've discussed it for a couple of years and now we're just like everyone else, chickens in our backyard.
We started with four Leghorns (two white, two brown), setting them up in a comfy cage found on Craigslist, which a nice feeder to poop in and a nice waterer to poop in and nice soft bedding to poop in. Cute. As. Hell.
The flock numbers three now, and they're getting bigger every day. Their personalities are distinct enough that even if Henriette wasn't a different color, you'd be able to tell her from Penelope who is different from Betty despite looking so much alike.
Right now they are at the surly tween stage, where they still look baby-cute sitting still but their gait is becoming awkward, their limbs lanky. But like any tween, they still long for snuggles. Still, what they're thinking right now is "Ugh. STUPID".
Very soon they will not be cute at all. More of their big-girl feathers will be in (let's hope they're big girl feathers, there's a ten percent chance of big boy feathers and a relocation program). Pretty soon they will be the chick equivalent of teenagers. Ay, me.
And pretty soon they'll be living in a coop in the yard, which Dug is building. And in six months or less, we'll start getting eggs.
The chickens will also be contributing to the rest of the food production in the house, by eating some of our scraps and contributing their (copious) poop to our compost. Said compost will be enriching the raised beds Dug has built/is building for vegetables--so far in the first bed I've got four kinds of tomatoes, one crookneck squash, one cucumber, and a few heads of lettuce that I bought as starts because I couldn't wait for the lettuce I'll be growing from seeds in the next bed. I am looking forward to canning some of our bounty, making tomato sauce and pickles. And I fantasize about having a home-grown spinach salad this fall with a home-grown hard cooked egg on top.
Or, I will get bored with it and everything will die. We'll see. My grandfather once told us that farming was impossible unless you were born into it, but I don't think that's any reason not to do what we can to stay close to the land, as it were.