Sunday, August 3, 2008


Often there is a great affinity between women and hens -- and I think the reason is obvious: Who else has eggs and raises chickies?

Several years ago I got it into my head that I wanted to do a chicken cross-stitch. It took me a long time to find what I wanted. Actually I really intended to do a New Hampshire Red or a breed something like that, but I'd just finished doing a lion head that took bizillions of reddish/brownish stitches and I just couldn't bring myself to start another project with the same colors. So I chose this little lady and was very pleased with the way she turned out. You will notice, if you have good eyesight, that it says "MOM" down by the shadow. Henny Penny now resides with with my daugher Erin.

Back when we had our house in Orange I had thought about getting myself a real hen. Because we had no grass in the back yard - only a pool and cement, courtesy of the former owners - I knew it would have to be a hen in a cage. It wasn't enough that we had three cats and a dog; I thought a chicken would be a good addition. I even did some research on how to convert chicken droppings into usable fertilizer, thinking that if I could solve that problem I might have better luck in convincing Jerry that I wasn't just talking through my hat.

My own mother used to tell my sister and me about living on the farm and how my grandma used to love her chickens. In fact, she named them all (a dangerous practice if she intended to have chicken dinners, I think). I didn't know my grandma well and she died when I was young, so I think maybe all this is why I had a yen to have a chicken of my very own. Henny Penny, she would have been.

As you probably guessed, I did not get my chicken. So doing a cross-stitched Henny Penny all these years later had to suffice.

Which reminds me that in the Pet Cemetery on Beach Boulevard in Huntington Beach there is a chicken named Henny Penny buried there. On the little tombstone the epitaph reads something like, "The Best Chicken that Ever Lived." Now that was a very loved chicken. I would have loved my chicken like that too. Oh well, if there is one thing in life that is true it is that we don't always get everything we want.

1 comment:

Stacey said...

That is a GREAT looking crossstitch!