By Lisa Huddleston


Six days-old chicks and two young ducks were added to HudFarm yesterday afternoon. We had planned to buy some chicks on March 15th when the Co-op would have some Buff Orpingtons in stock, but due to some conflicts, that date was going to be a struggle to meet. Therefore, when we just happened to be at the Tractor Supply while they were unpacking loudly peeping chicks, we thought, “Hey. Why not? And while we’re at it, why not add a couple of yellow, fuzzy ducks to the box?” What? Ducks? Yes. Ducks.



Now a couple of ducks may not seem like a big deal when we already have 2 dogs, 3 cats, and 12 chickens, but it was a big step for me. You see, every new animal we add is a potential disaster in my dark, little mind. And after the recent chicken massacre perpetrated by one of my sweet puppies, all I can think of is another bloody mess.


But baby ducks are precious, fluffy, and too cute to be missed. And my husband loves them. I just had to set my fears aside.



Now we have a cozy brooder set up in my loom room. We bought a shallow water trough that we will be able to repurpose when the sheep and donkey we are planning for arrive this summer. (Yes—more precious lives for me to worry over—especially in light of the eerie yipping from the woods last night as a pack of coyotes found their prey.) The trough is filled with wood chips, chicks, ducks, feeder and waterer and covered with chicken wire to keep the cat and dogs out. (Oh, I hope so!) And all should be well.


But all our precautions are no guarantees. Dottie Pigbody made a dive for a duckling this morning, and both dogs roll their eyes and quiver with evil anticipation as they look through the chicken wire at our sweet peeps. Disaster is always a possibility, but I have decided to go for it a little more than I used to. I could let my worries control my actions but then I would never know the unconditional love of our crazy dogs, or the arrogant affection of our cats, or the wonderful flavor of fresh, warm eggs. Fear could keep me safely tucked away under the chicken wire of worry—but that’s no way to really live unless you are a chicken.



Chuck and I both have decided, quite wisely, that we will never be any younger, and now is the time to do some of the odd things we’ve dreamed about. So chickens and ducks and sheep and dogs and cats and a sweet, old donkey it is. Hopefully I’ll be able to tell you all about duck eggs in a couple of months, the good Lord willing and the dogs don’t bite!


By Lisa Huddleston

Weeping may endure for the night, but joy comes in the morning. (Psalm 30:5)

I went to bed expecting to have a lost dog at my house in the morning. Sarah and John, my daughter and her husband, had found a chihuahua while walking their dog, Hiltie, and the little guy had followed them home to their apartment. Sarah wanted to bring him to me right then knowing it could be a rough night, but I didn’t make the offer since I knew the same thing. Instead, I told her to bring him to me in the morning and that I’d keep him while they worked. We would see what happened from there. I already have one rescued dog and four abandoned cats so we both knew chances of him staying with us were pretty good–if we couldn’t find his home.

Diesel and John enjoying their time--worry free!

Diesel and John enjoying their time–worry free!

I went to sleep planning to welcome Sarah and the dog early in the morning before she headed to work so, of course, I worried all night long. How would the other animals feel about his arrival? Would Pippin, our biggest and bossiest cat, attack him? Would Dottie have her doggy feelings hurt? Would he try to mark his territory in my house? (I never have had a male dog so that really worried me.) And mainly, would Chuck freak out over the possibility of a dog scratching the furniture? Yeah, I woke up a lot during the night and pondered all these “what ifs” as I tossed and turned.

As luck would have it, and is usually the case, my worrying was all for nothing. Sarah learned about a Lost & Found Pets of Wilson County, TN, page on Facebook, and before she even left her apartment this morning, Diesel had found his mom! They had a tearful reunion at the pavilion on the Watertown square, and everyone went on about their days. Crisis averted!

While I am relieved to know that our family won’t have to add another pet, I have to admit to being a little bit disappointment. Diesel (what a name for a chihuahua!) was a really cute and friendly little guy who I was already thinking of new names for. (No–don’t call me with any lost animals, but there is a great place on Facebook that will give you a hand.)

Anyway, this story had a happy ending with a well-worn moral: Worry is always a waste of time. Whether your worries come to pass or not, you’ve lost good hours you can never replace–like my lost sleep–and you’ve shown how tiny your faith can be. (Luckily, just a mustard seed sized faith can still move mountains.) I’m glad Diesel’s mom didn’t give up, and I’m even more glad he went home with her!

Don’t worry about tomorrow. Tomorrow will worry about itself. (Matt. 6:34)