6th Anniversary

Today is HenBlog’s 6th anniversary. The writing that I do for this blog is the most consistent, longest work project of my life. Writing itself isn’t new to me – I’ve always thought of myself as a writer. One of my clearest childhood memories is of putting down my thoughts and stories in a notebook. Over the years my identity as a writer was confirmed by the publication of five books and numerous magazine and newspaper articles. My sense of self-worth was tied into whether an editor and a publisher deemed my words valuable and interesting enough to put into print. I continue to want to get my projects picked up by traditional publishing houses. (I love the collaborative process that takes place with a talented team of people all focused on getting a book out.) But, unlike in the past, my sense of worth as a writer is not limited to that.

A turning point for me happened two years ago, during a lunch with a friend and an editor. We were talking about what I was writing, and how hard it is to get published. We had just finished a course of egg salad and greens, and were eating chocolate soufflé. We were on my screen porch, watching the chickens in the yard. She said, “This is what you do. Do this.” She swept her arm out at the view. I felt like I had been given permission to turn my backyard world into my writing world.

Now I have my books, but I also have you, and this on-going conversation on HenCam about a chicken keeping life. The story continues in my school visits and chicken keeping workshops. It’ll be told in new books and articles. But, mostly, it happens here. Thanks for reading.

Lily celebrated the anniversary by going fishing. It’s raining, thank goodness, and the pond has been rising, enough so that the little goldfish were swimming in the shallows. Lily caught and ate one before I realized why she was prancing and wagging her tail in the yard. She’s taking the rest of the day off.

I wish that I could take the day off and go fishing (although not exactly the sort of fishing that Lily does) but I’ve things to do. Writing projects are in the works.

If you have a favorite story that you’ve read here, do let me know.


  1. Congratulations, Terry! So glad you continue to share your world with us! : )

  2. Congratulations,

    Not one story , but the narrative of Buffy. It reminded me of one of those old Soap Operas my Nanna would have watched.

  3. Congratulations, I’ll always be watching you. I love all the hencam.

  4. Congratulations!!! Six years, I know I’ve been a fan for four years and was lucky enough to attend your workshop. I love your blog….it makes me happy!

  5. Congratulations! My mother and I enjoy reading HenBlog and watching HenCam. You, and your animals, have small fun club in Poland, in Poznan.

  6. Thank you Terry, my selfish hope is that there are many, many more years left of your writing here, for us it is a real gift.

  7. Congratulations on your six year achievement! We so enjoy ALL your writing – especially love your HenBlog and learn so much about the joys and realities of keeping chickens. We will get our first chicks – 4 Buff Oroingtons – in mid-May and are so grateful to you for giving us the confidence to take on this project.

  8. I love hearing about the hens, even when you have to deal with a poorly one. I do love hearing and seeing photos of Scooter and his Queen Anne legs, he has to be one of my favourite story lines!

  9. Congratulations to you Terry! I love how you bring a voice to the animals. My favorite has to be “Candy’s bad weather day” written in January of this year. Just a great piece! She is a joy to watch and read about. You have been a wealth of information, and I hope you know how much you are appreciated! Thank you!

  10. Happy 6th Anniversary Hencam! I am so happy to have found this site. Thank you Terry for sharing your world with us. I have learned so much from you as well as enjoyed the stories of your menagerie!

  11. I too, love the Hencam. All your stories are appealing but I’m most intrigued by Candy the Bunneh. She exudes personality and I adore her maneuvers in the evening before going into her hutch. I’d love more stories about her. I’ve never been around rabbits and she’s won me over. Continued success with everything you do.

  12. Congratulations, Terry! Six years is something to be proud of. Thank you SO much for sharing your stories and experiences with us. Pick one favorite? Impossible. I enjoy every one of them.

  13. Congratulations on 6 years of great writing!! I really like to hear about Candy. She’s a real treasure.

  14. Your blog has been one of the best things I have ever stumbled accross on the web. I have had “girls” too for a year now and love to hear and see the same actions in your chickens that mine also have! Thank you so much for sharing your life and world with us. We love you. Carol

  15. Happy 6th anniversary. It’s obvious you are more than just a keeper of animals and expert hen caretaker. I have enjoyed your stories and updates, as well as your new revelations, in addition to watching your wonderful animals. I have enjoyed so many of your stories and videos that would take up too much space to name them all. Some favs include hens going for walk in woods, goats grazing on brambles & goatee clipping, Candy (peeing/not morning bunny) getting pecked by hen, sticking out tongue, your pie baking including recipes and dinner party just to name a few. Thanks for sharing all of it with us. It’s very enjoyable and always lifts my sprits no matter what my mood is.

  16. Congratulations. I have been following you for two years and you have given me the confidence to get my own chickens now. I love all your chicken stories and info. I have to wait until the end of May for the Dominique chicks to be two months old so they can be sexed and strong enough to move on. I am having to be patient and in the mean time sponge up everything you say to keep me going. I also love the interaction on your blog, it makes us all feel a part of it. I thank you.

  17. Happy 6th blog anniversary Terry! Gosh you’ve been blogging even longer than I have!

    Oh Lily! she looks so chuffed doesn’t she?!

    I think I like the posts about your goats best, probably because I’ve never kept goats and every snippet is a new adventure. Not forgetting your own adventures into a world filled will the sounds of dog paws on floor-boards, the chatter of happy hens and music :-)

    And of course it’s been lovely to find a trans-atlantic henkeeping friend.



  18. Happy aniversary Terry. I just enjoy the hen cam/blog. I don’t have a favorite story, I enjoy all.

    My favorite thing is I always seem to learn something.

    Being a “semi” single guy your cooking has inspried me to do more.

  19. Congrats on 6 years!

    Love all the stories that you post, they are ALL informative and entertaining, thanks for sharing them!

  20. Happy sixth! I spend my days at an independent school here in TN telling students about the worth and pleasure of writing. I’m glad your sensible friend convinced you that you don’t need a fancy publisher because each day your writing helps us in the greater world consider the wondrous joys of your daily life. Thank you for sharing your world–and your talented words!

  21. So happy for your anniversary Terry! Congrats! It is the highlight of my day when I get to work. After I turn on my computer, your blog is the first thing I read and I keep the hencam on all day so I have something calm to look at while I am herding hundreds of kids. You have been an inspiration to me and you are the reason my hens are in better condition and I am able to save some. You also inspired me to grown my own food and I have taken such a pleasure in it. I feel sorry to all the people who have to listen to me rattle on about eggs and lettuce! Thank you for everything!

  22. Congratulations on 6 years. It’s nice to hear how much you love it. I only just recently found this space, and I’m so glad I did. Add me to the list of dedicated hen cam watchers and blog readers.

  23. I love all of your entries but found your reflections of your “Blue day” most touching. I still think about your little Blue Sapphire and how she tried so hard.Thanks Terry!

  24. We all owe a debt of gratitude to your editor friend. You are my favorite blog bar none. I have ordered copies of your first cookbooks which are in the mail and I can’t wait. My favorite post is “Got Peanuts?” from 9/30/10 — a surefire smile when you need one. Thanks so much.

  25. Hi Terry :D One of my favorite entries was about the physical comparison of the older hens to the younger gals. And you had a picture of one of the younger gals (I think it was Agatha) with just the cutest expression on her face. She just looked young, right at that moment, and innocent. Your blog is a must-read for me. Although I have chickens of my own (I also have a Buffy and she’s a buff orpington, too!), I love to see how other people are raising their chickens and how they’re doing it and all the different varieties out there. Here’s hoping to many more fun years of HenCam and HenBlog!

  26. Happy Hencam-Anniversary!

    It’s hard to pick out a single favorite story. But news about Candy always puts a smile on my face.

    Keep up the good work.

  27. The polish always and I think Betsy’s or the late Coco’s adventures last year with being broody and the eggs breaking. And you right in the middle of a busy day having to take the stubborn hen and bathing her with the hose to get the broken yellow yolk off her that basically covered her from head to foot.

  28. An International backyard – amazing! Thank you.

  29. Just discovered your blog about a month ago. One of the first things I do when I wake up is check out your hencam to see what the girls are doing (and the goats and Candy too). Looking forward to meeting you in person when my husband and I attend your chicken workshop next month. We just received our first chicks this week and have so much to learn!

  30. With all of the things we have coming in and out of our lives, and all that goes on in the world today, it’s refreshing to turn to the HenCam and see the simplest of things…. a women sharing her farm/animals with us. What could be any better! Thank you and many more years..

  31. My little daughter, 4-and-a-half, is growing up with HenBlog. I am required to read the entire front page of the blog to her every day. We have loved all the posts people mentioned above. I particularly remember the saga of the new chicks, and the post about making new dog beds (and how Scooter claimed the big one) – we read that again and again. Your stories of life and death, illness and joy, peace, contentment and animal husbandry are a world in miniature and a window on life for a little girl, and her mom! Thank you for all you do. I’m proud to have the only kid at preschool who can discuss using diatomaceous earth for vent lice and the rarity of gapeworm.