Chickens: A New Year’s Resolution

It’s no secret that I hate birds.  I’m talking the fire of a thousand suns kind of hatred.  Just in case you’re thinking my bird loathing isn’t justified, let me send you on a little trip down memory lane to the day a wild turkey chased me to school.

Go ahead, I’ll wait.

See?  I hate birds and they hate me. Fair is fair.

Last summer, with just a few days remaining in Uganda, my three boys set an official meeting with me.  They’d been having “brothers only, no mother” meetings without me for a few days, so when they set this meeting with me my interest was piqued, to say the least.

I’m new to this parenting thing and I was a little nervous.  They’re not biological brothers.  Being brothers is as unfamiliar to them as motherhood is to me.  We’re all still working out the kinks of our unlikely family.

Lanyero and Sons: Otim Geoffrey, Alicia, Oryem William and Opiyo Martin
Lanyero and Sons: Otim Geoffrey, Alicia, Oryem William and Opiyo Martin

The day came for our meeting and we sat outside at a table, drinking pineapple Merinda.  My boys began to speak.  They told me how grateful they are that Terry and I support their schooling and how grateful they are that we do so much for them.  They also told me how difficult it is for them to ask for our help, especially because they know we’re supporting all three of them.

I didn’t have much of a response except to say that I understand how difficult it is to ask for help.  Most days, I’d rather die than admit I need help.

I also told my boys that as their mom, part of my job is to say no when they ask me for things that aren’t in their best interests.  (Right moms?  That’s part of the job, right?  Oh, I’m so new to this.)

They continued, telling me that they’d developed a business plan so that they could begin to pay their own school fees and pay for other necessary items like books, food and clothing.

I took a deep breath.  Young boys with a business plan sounded like bad news to me.  I had “No” ready on my lips.

Then they pulled out photocopies of their business plan and I knew they were serious.  Typing up the plan on a computer and then making copies isn’t that easy when you don’t have access to things like a computer, a copier or regular electricity.

Martin, my middle kid who named me Lanyero, went over their plan in detail and I couldn’t help but giggle.

My boys had created a beautiful business plan to start a chicken farm.

A chicken farm, proof positive that God has a wicked sense of humor.

They even named it: Lanyero and Sons Broilers.

Lanyero means “joyful”.  The literal translation means “laughter”.  And, Lord have mercy, did I cackle at the thought of starting a chicken farm in Northern Uganda.

What brings me joy about their plan is that they want to tithe a portion of their chickens and eggs to local organizations that take care of people with disabilities, widows, and orphaned babies and children.

My formerly orphaned boys want to help care for orphans.

And just like that my heart melted.

So as people around me are making New Year’s resolutions to get healthy, get organized, get out of debt, I-the girl who is petrified of all things feathered-am making plans to get chickens.

Wanna help make the chicken farm come to fruition?  Here's your chance.  

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