My Wooden Egg

Jenny, one of five contributors to Mama Drama, asked readers to tell her about “the weirdest” things they own.

She even has a creepy prize for her weirdest commenter: A picture of Mr. Poodlestein in what appears to be an antique frame.

First, let me say, I am not writing this post so that I can get my paws on Mr. Poodlestein. As much as I love canines, nothing draws me to this portrait of someone’s dearly departed dog. (I already have a picture of my own dearly departed dog. Thank you.) And then I saw that Willowtree has posted a picture of cat butt gum. So much for winning that contest. (And he thought he wasn't all that weird.)

ANYWAY..... the idea of sharing one of my most peculiar possessions did intrigue me. (I am trying to post daily in the month of November. (I am not signed up for NaBloPoMo, but I’m pretending that I am. Blogging about my old wooden egg takes care of Monday.)

What is it you ask? Yes, you did too, ask. Do not quit reading – Come on back. Look into my eyes and repeat after me. “I want to know about Pamela’s wooden egg.”

I am so glad you asked.

My earliest memory as a child is accompanying my mom out to the chicken house. To me it was the greatest adventure.

A sliding wooden latch locked the door. That part is a bit blurry. However, I remember exactly what I saw each time the door was open. There were three distinct areas. The first one was level with the entry door. The second was dug out so that you could hop down and walk around the nesting area, face to face with angry hens. The third section was a little bit higher and had chicken wire stretched flat across it. I’m thinking that may have been where the chicks would be placed to keep them safe. Chickens are mean to each other.

I can still conjure up the smell of chickens and chicken feed. In addition, I can remember the little round water trough that was gravity fed, and the ground up oyster shells that were provided to encourage healthy egg production. I can even hear the “bwaaawk, bwaak, BWAAAAK.” The last ‘bwaaaak” would be an egg stealing “bwaak.”

However, what I found most exciting was the little wooden eggs that mom kept in the nests. She said it kept the chickens coming back because they thought that they were laying eggs for “setting.” If we left the wooden egg, the hen didn’t know that we were stealing her future family. Apparently, chickens can’t count.

I don’t know how many times I was in trouble for sneaking in their and handling them or bringing them outside to play. I loved those wooden eggs.

One day my Uncle came over with a hatchet and butchered all the chickens in our backyard. (That traumatic story can be saved for another blog day)

After that, the chicken house remained empty for a number of years.

When my mom passed away in 1993, we spent several days going through her belongings. In her bureau drawer, we discovered one of those wooden eggs.

I now have it in my bureau drawer. It is worn and etched with hundreds of chicken scratches from where those silly hens clawed at it to place it into the perfect spot before they set on it. When I pull it out and hold it in my hand, I can remember the smells, the sounds, and the excitement of escorting my mom into the wonderful world of feathers and chicken poo.

Then I feel sad when I realize that there will be no one to hold it with fond memories when I am gone.


Jenny said…
I love this post and I love the egg and I'm almost insulted that you would think it's weird is weird..but it's still wonderful.
Debs said…
Ok...I have to admit this. I love the story and I love anything that deals with chickens and eggs.

I know the smell you are talking about, there is NOTHING like the smell of a hen house. My Great Grandmother had lots of chickens. When I think of chickens, I think of her.

I am jealous that you have a wooden egg.

LOVE the story :)

I read your comments on my blog. That is so funny that you come up with the same thing as me. *LOL* My sisters did it and came up with different stuff.
Walker said…
Wonderful story, Pamela!
Vicki said…
I remember wooden eggs. How wonderful that you still have your mothers. I would never put my hand in to get the eggs. Those hens are mean. Please refer to my Afraid of Chickens (emu) post. THis is where it all started....

My memories is my cousins milking goats and spraying me with the milk. Eiick!
Matt said…
I'm hoping your uncle had PERMISSION to butcher all of the chickens in the yard? Otherwise, that would have been really creepy. I mean, I'm also hoping that they were butchered for food and not for... fun?
Pass the Torch said…
Your stories are SOOOO COOOOL!!
Shauna said…
Pamela, your girls will be able to pass the egg (per say) and tell the story. . . :)

Love it. . . I hated gathering the eggs. . .Don't laugh, but I'm scared of chickens - I know, I Know - - -ROFL
Kathleen Marie said…
One thing I love about blogging is the stories we share. A recent book I read about Ireland was the story of "The Storyteller" who traveled around telling stories and in so many ways we do the same thing. Your wooden egg is an excellent story to pass on to your kids. I have a few things I hold on wooden eggs but some small things that mean a lot to me and I have or will write about them as well.

Oh, and isn't the new Captain Wentworth quite the cutie!
Bonnie B said…
Thanks for making me cry-- that was so beautiful. Sometimes I think I could be a chicken with a wooden egg-- at least then I wouldn't feel guilty for not losing ALL the baby fat
CyberCelt said…
Wooden eggs are not weird. They went right next to the wooden fruit and the wooden veggies.

Happy C&C Monday.
Masago said…
What a great story about a cherished heirloom. I actually have a wooden goose egg but it wasn't used for this purpose. :-)
Claudia said…
Today walking from class I heard a rooster crowing at one of the local businesses. I had to smile....
Karmyn R said…
Well, I'll take that egg and tell the story of how my mom used to sneak into the chicken house and steal it so she could play with it and how my grandmother would catch her and give her "the face."
marnie said…
Your weird egg prompted me to post my weak attempt at weirdness.

Your eggs are definitely weirder.
Robin said…
I was thinkin' what Karmyn said :).
Anonymous said…
i reach my hand into the super market cooler for my eggs ivy
Rurality said…
I guess golf balls don't have quite the sentimental feeling to them! LOL. :)

Nice story.

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