Birthday Wishes

My birthday is next week. November 17th. I’ll be 51 years old (why do people get all coy about their ages?) My husband asked me what I want. He wasn’t thinking of more animals, but, of course, I am.  Although I’d love a burro, a couple of horses, and two Pilgrim geese, I won’t ask for them. The barns are full. But I could fit one of these in the house.


I owned a hedgehog a few years ago. Bought it at a poultry show (you never know what you’ll come home with!) It was adorable. But also nocturnal. Very noisy play at night. And quite messy, stinky poo. Still, I’d welcome another one into our home.

So, I still don’t know what to answer my husband. I could use a new pair of winter barn boots, but that’s not exactly a “birthday wish” sort of gift. I know – I’ll ask for homemade goat milk soap. It’s indulgent and small farm-based. There’s a nice selection on

Then again, we do have room for geese.


  1. You share a birthday with my partner! I don’t think he would like a hedgehog though – too prickly!

  2. Hello ,
    your birthday at all times !
    you are lucky !
    My birthday it is on january 3rd
    Good birthday ahead of time !
    I speak English badly
    I am French !!!!

  3. I wrote to you earlier when I noticed the new rocker chicks in your coop. (Love their names by the way- and their “hair” is growing out nicely!)
    I don’t know why but I have a fascination with your hen cam. I keep it up all day on my desktop. My sister will be getting chickens this Spring and we stumbled across your site while searching information. This is a serious addiction. I have even encouraged my friends to watch the girls in your flock. (Amazingly some of them were already aware of your site- and this is a diverse group of women!)
    At any rate, even though I feel like a hen stalker-your chickens make me feel very happy. I love their shapes and their personalities.
    Happy birthday! Hope you get your hedgehog….
    Leslie Burns

    • Welcome to the addiction! I’ve heard from people who work in cubicles and keep the hencam on all day – it’s their “window.” I’m happy to provide this service :)

  4. I have to say I LOVE your website! You have such awesome pictures and I’m starting to get addicted as well to the blog and the hencam, even though all I have to do is look out the window here and I can see my own chickens!! :-) I hope to be able to find your Tillie book at a library or something and read it too. You’re an inspiration – maybe someday I’ll write all about my chickens’ escapades too! :-) Keep up the excellent work!

    • Tillie Lays an Egg should be at your library. Or you can always ask for it through interlibrary loan. Some of my most ardent fans are librarians!

  5. Hi Terry,

    Reading your blog I have realized we are “kindred spririts” in many ways-and now I realize that we are also the same age, both celebrating fall birthdays. Happy Birthday, and thank you for a window into the world I hope to someday have (minus the hedgehog). For now, my six hens keep me laughing daily.

  6. addicted? can it be a secret that we ALL are?!?! This website is like an virtual oasis in a sand storm of constant sad/dreary news that bombards us every day. I became addicted the first time I looked at it—how many years ago? It’s a wonderful daily reminder that it’s not only good to have a nice family farm but it’s good to write about it and then, share it! I have recruited many new viewers by asking them to just “take a look” ! Next time I run into them….yep, hooked. Thanks Terry–and that wonderful husband, Steve. I’ll bet you get that burro before long. It’s only one more barn ! Happy Birthday~
    Nancy & Peter (soon to be G/Parents thanks to Shayna and Mike !)

    • Spoken by someone who has a larger menagerie than me! I’m discovering that goat people don’t usually stop at owning just goats. (BTW, readers, check out goatgirl’s blog. It’s excellent!)

  7. Hi Terry!

    Happy Birthday this week!

    We have wild hedgehogs in our garden – and we build ‘hedgehog hotels’ from rocks, logs and fallen leaves, so they have snug places to sleep through the winter. I’ve never heard of keeping them as pets! But lots of people over here make sure their local hedgehogs get all the food they need for the winter sleep and look after ‘rescue’ hedgehogs who neep a little extra TLC.

    Have you read ‘Mrs Tiggywinkle” by Beatrix Potter? It was my favourite book as a child and our next door neighbour used to call me ‘Lucy’ because he thought I looked like the little girl in the story – that was a long time ago!!!!


    • The only hedgehogs in the states are pets! They like to run on wheels, like hamsters. I did (and still do, perhaps now so even more) love the Potter books. She put so much truth about animals in dressed up, talking, adorable yet realistic creatures. BP was willing to write about hard subjects like predator and prey. Really an astounding talent on so many levels.

  8. Hi Terry…I have a friend here in California who has goats and makes her own goat milk soap and lotion…She also raises chickens and sells her eggs to an upscale restaurant in San Diego ($5.00/dz!!!!!!) and organic produce..the website is below….
    Super nice lady..I get my bantams from her….D.

  9. Hi Terry,

    A very big “Happy Birthday” to you for the 17th. My birthday is exactly a week later. Hope you have a fun day.

  10. Happy late birthday! If you lived closer to VT, I’d have baked you a hen cake!