New Camera

I’ve needed a new camera for quite awhile. The camera that I had was good enough. I’m not a technically skilled photographer, but I see stories, and I was able to capture them with the Coolpix. I was frustrated at missing some moments because the focus was too slow, and the shutter speed didn’t allow for action shots (you know how quick chickens move, so I missed a lot!) But, cameras are expensive and I put off purchasing a new one until it became a necessity. Finally, dirt got behind the lens and it couldn’t be cleaned off and so I went camera shopping.

I went to a day-long photography workshop to learn what my options are. Steve and I discussed the right camera for me. I now have a Nikon D5300. That’s why I was able to take that pic of the deer bolting. With this new Nikon, I’ll be able to take more enticing food photographs. If spring ever comes, it’ll do beautiful closeups of the garden blooming.

I was only able to purchase it because of the support of my readers. HenCam is my full-time job. I have to piece together a lot of parts to make it pay. Maintaining the site, with the live-streaming cams, costs about $300 a month. The cams themselves cost $500 each and need replacing every two years. It is challenging doing what I do and not have it be a drain on my family’s finances. The site does not pay for itself. The ads on HenCam bring in very little (a click pays about 10¢.) Associated products, like the calendar, bring in even less (I think that I made $30 this year on that project!) If you start your Amazon shopping by clicking through my website, I make a small cut. It all adds up. Chicken keeping workshops and storytimes help to pay the bills. Luckily, I love the public speaking, and thoroughly enjoy that aspect of my work. I’m also fortunate to be an author, but the financial truth is that being published is more satisfying than lucrative. I make about 5% on the cover price of each new book sold (less than $1 a book) and most books don’t sell more than 15,000 copies over their lifetime. Most of my writing now appears on this website. I love writing my daily blog. I find the topic of what goes on my animals endlessly fascinating. I enjoy the immediate connection and interaction with my readers that blogging provides. I also field numerous private emails daily. I’m happy to answer questions. I can’t think of anything I’d rather do than engage in this conversation with you. With traditional writing, a publisher comes between the author and her readers and pays the bills. With a website like HenCam, the readers come directly to the author. If you were my neighbor and asked for chicken advice, you’d invite me over for a cup of coffee, and so I thought I’d create the equivalent of that friendly cup here at HenCam.  Many of you have bought me a cup of coffee, banana chips for Phoebe, and carrots for Tonka. (There’s an easy link to PayPal on the sidebar.) Truly, I couldn’t put the time into my writing without your support.

The goats are especially appreciative of their peanuts. In fact, Pip says, Put down the new camera and give us a few.


We all say thank you.


  1. Lucky you on the new camera! *sighs with envy*

    I was just looking at the girls and realized it was snowing by you again. And then the pic with a mountain of snow behind Pip. Yikes! We’ve always called March ‘mud month’. I think this year you might be trying to make another ‘pond’ by Little Pond. :)

  2. We love the new camera pictures. They really are great. I am so surprised you made only thirty dollars on your calendars. I love mine and this is the second year I’ve purchased. I plan to every year your put one out and I’m living. I understand if you decide not to, considering the low response. I love the pictures in the calendar and go through it about once a month.(not counting the daily use of the month that’s current.) If you do put one out, you have to put the above picture of Pip in it. Just adorable! My favorite for 2014 is the pond picture. Soooo pretty. Thanks for giving so much to us. It’s very much appreciated. I have a friend who bought a Nikon and I noticed the quality of the pictures were great from hers too. Normally, I only notice the subject of the picture, but with the Nikon, I notice the quality of the picture. Great camera.

    • I LOVE the calendar also. I still have last years edition too! The pictures make me smile! I agree, the photo of Pip should be included for 2015 if it is made available!

  3. Great camera choice. I love my Nikon. They are such great quality and worth the investment. Can’t wait to see your new spring photos!

  4. Hey, Goat Maid. Just one more ‘cuz I’m so cute when I try to amputate my nose on the fence.

  5. Terry, your stories of life at Little Pond Farm, wonderful photographs, recipes, postcards and “live action” scenes of all the girls, Pip and Caper, Phoebe, and quick cameo appearances of Lily, truly make my day, every day.

    Last Saturday, at the small Farmer’s Market close to my home, I proudly announced that I knew the breeds of some of the chickens who had produced the eggs I was purchasing from a Farmer (Cuckoo Maran, Ameracauna, Welsummer), astonishing him with my erudition. Then I had to “fess up” to It was a slow day at the Market, so we had time to “talk chickens”…such fun…so you see, your website is very educational for all sorts of folks, even those who don’t have their own flock/farm, but wish they did!

  6. I am so grateful for your blog, advice, humor and delightful pictures! You are my “go to” person for all my worries and questions about chickens. It is all worth twice the price of your suggested contributions. Thank you!

  7. Your pictures and comments about Pet Parenting are priceless and we love donating to the Kids–all of them!!

  8. I am so excited to have discovered your web sight! Thank you for maintaining the web cameras despite the cost. I’m a second grade teacher with 13 chickens of my own. I bought an inexpensive web camera last year so that we could observe my chickens, but I was unable to get it to work even once. I look forward to sharing your sight with my students. We hatch eggs in our classroom each year and they are excited to learn more about chickens. I purchased “Tillie Lays An Egg” last spring. It was my kindergarden students’ favorite book. This year I am teaching second grade. I’m sure my second graders will enjoy it even more than the kindergardeners. The details are amazing! Thank you for sharing your love for chickens.