By Janet Lunn (Bedford, NS)

Like any little girl I loved my stuffed animals and dolls but it went so much further.  I anthropomorphized everything and worried that if I wore my red shirt two days in a row that my yellow one would feel bad.  I owned these things, they were mine and I had to be sure they were treated with all the respect that a red button up shirt with bows on the sleeves should.  Imagine my coddling of the animals on the farm. 

The ducks were taken for walks on hay bale twine leashes.  The horses each had playtime scheduled with me in their chosen corner of the pasture.  When my father brought home chickens I was thrilled.  I couldn't wait to tell the ducks.

At first I thought my father's mind was befuddled with age when said he had gotten ten chickens.  There were clearly 13 chickens here.  He explained that we would benefit from the eggs of ten of the chickens and would give the neighbours the eggs from the remaining three.

"Which three?" I asked. 

"It doesn't matter," he replied.

It did matter.  I couldn't bear to not know which chickens were mine and which were renters.  My plan was simple and produced spectacular results.  I painted the chickens' toenails!

I realize some people would take the easy way out and paint only the three neighbour chickens.  Not me!  My ten chickens proudly strutted through the barnyard sporting two luscious coats of "Kiss Me" red nails.

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