If you’ve come looking for helpful advice, serious contemplation or with some vague hope of finding some expert advice on something or other…..well, you’ve come to the wrong place. Scramble around as best you can and climb back up the rabbit hole. If you see Duck Norris on the way, tell him I want my credit card back and I’m cancelling his order for 10,000 campaign flyers and promotional stickers that say “Duck Life – Norris for Prime Minister”. But, if you’ve come looking for a bit of a mish-mashed journey, seen through the eyes of those whole dwell at our house, (and the fact that the non human members probably have more to say than the human ones seems completely normal to you) then maybe you’ve fallen down the right hole.
To introduce the players in this game of life (I think it’s somehow easier to think of it all as a game – even though I suspect I don’t know any of the rules and the ducks have eaten any and all tokens required to play) these are the ones who call our house home:
Ben – my amazing husband. Somewhere in my mind I’ve always known there needs to be a sensible one to reel me in. Someone to say “no, we don’t need any more animals, you’re being ridiculous” and “I don’t think raising ducklings in a small bathroom for 6 weeks is a good idea”. Sometimes he is that person. Other times, I suspect the cat is the only sensible one here (and she doesn’t approve of either of us).
Zeus – Ridiculously handsome American Staffordshire Terrier. Thinks his fame is unrivaled and suspects the only reason he hasn’t secured a movie part yet is because I’m not putting calls through to him from his agent.
Kirra – Sweet little Staffordshire Bull Terrier who has NO CLASS whatsoever. Old, almost crippled and as fragile as paper. She either ignores or uses every single one of these things to her advantage. Legs aren’t working = breakfast in bed. Old age creeping up = I can’t hear you telling me what to do. Fragile = no way, I can totally do zoomies!….oh.
Jaz is 18 years old. She looks like she’s about 5, except she only has 3 teeth. All animals, including humans, are completely beneath her. Except for her friend, a bobtail lizard. She likes to sunbake on the front path next to him. Her favourite activities include waiting in her raised bed for unsuspecting neighbourhood cats or dogs to approach the front door – then ambushing them. She’s like a cat version of grumpy old Clint Eastwood on the front porch.
Duck Norris – The oldest drake in the flock. Convinced he is the leader of the free world and dedicates most of his time to running a campaign to become Prime Minister of Australia. Thinks the hens are his secretaries. From the Mouth of Duck Norris: Flock life. He says I can’t stop him from telling his story. Vote Duck Norris for Prime Minister! (please don’t).
Quackmire – Youngest drake in the flock. Son of Duck Norris. Annoying little upstart who thinks he’s in prime position to take over “the running of all the things”. Duck Norris tolerates his rudeness FOR NOW.
Marshmallow – Bossiest and biggest duck. Egg mum of Quackmire (she laid him but had better things to do than sit around on eggs all day waiting for them to hatch).
Coco – Pretty brown and white duck, adopted mum of Quackmire. Sweet and funny, except when sitting on eggs. I still have the bruises as a reminder.
Princess – The sweetest, daftest duck. Smaller than everyone, a snuggler who loves to follow you around (if you have snacks), she gets lost about 35 times a day. Unable to work out how to get back to the flock if there is any type of obstacle in her way, no matter how much Duck Norris calls to her. Quacks the neighbourhood down until a rescue mission is launched (which involves the entire flock walking the 2 metres around a corner to find her).
Cleoquacktra & Morticia Flapems – The new girls. Beautiful black Cayuga ducks with iridescent green, purple and blue feathers. Cleo almost rivals Princess in how many times she can get lost in a day. Morticia is shy and skittish and the most likely to hang back at snack time. Quackmire says the new girls belong to him (but he also says the older girls belong to him too).
Thelma – Boss hen. Rules with mostly kindness and love. Unless you try to take her tomato. At that point, she will mess you up.
Gwen – Second in charge. Exceedingly bossy and attempts to rule with an iron fist. Loves to hang out at the fence incase there is an appearance of snacks. Queen of the egg song.
Helen – Super pretty Welsummer hen. Fits in the middle of the flock somewhere. Will take food from your hand, and most of your fingers as well.
Houdini – Beautiful light grey lavender Araucana. Has a beard and ear tufts, but her light gold legs keep her femininity intact. Got her name from the time she escaped when we first bought her home. Twice. Caught her running in and out of the fence with Zeus trying desperately to eat her. Lays blue eggs.
Hairstyle – Another lavender Araucana with a rocking hairstyle. Does not care about chicken rules. Exasperates the rest of the flock who have strict rules about who can do what when. Can’t see their disapproving looks because her ridiculous hairstyle covers her eyes. Tiniest chicken in the flock, lays blue eggs.
Louise – The hen who is consistently bottom of the flock. Bigger than almost everyone, also terrified of everyone. Spends most of her time trying to work out how to dart into the snack pile and grab the best bits without being seen. Suspect her of using my credit card to buy costumes. Mostly ninja outfits.