Start of the Chicken Saga

Chicken Saga and Experiencing Koinonia

When my husband first decided that we were gonna get chickens,I was not thrilled. We tried this before when we first moved to the farm and when they started perching on the porch and pooping, I was done. It wasn’t until August 2021 that my husband decided to purchase more. When I say more,he got over 80 chicks!! He decided to get multiple breeds that were dual purpose for eggs and meat. He was fixing to leave for another job while they were still young. However, we butchered half so they could be manageable while he was away. This way, we had some meat,and by spring the rest would be providing us eggs. When he returned home for the following summer,he again purchased more chickens. When I say more chickens, I mean over 100, this time!!! Let’s not forget to mention that he also decided to teach my son how to incubate and hatch some, as well. This being said, I am pretty sure we replaced the 30 or so chickens that we butchered last time. This was good because you never know what will happen, it wasn’t even a couple months after getting the next batch of chicks that a crazy storm hit our homestead and killed 32 of them, while they were in the handmade coop.

We were not getting much when it came to eggs as we were inching into the summer months. This particular summer was one of the worst droughts this area has seen. We also experimented on pasturing our chickens in our fields with electric fencing and a chicken tractor. With these two factors, we noticed that quickly our egg supply was none!

Here is my first recommendation if you plan to get chickens: Why are you getting them? Meat, eggs, to hatch and sell, or just as a hobby. This will help you decide on the amount to get and keep a goal in mind on how you will manage them. Think about more bang for your buck, like us getting dual purpose breeds so we could use them for meat and eggs. We also got a large number, thinking we would like to sell eggs at a reasonable price.

During the spring, our chickens were laying for the first time. They were doing well, and like I said, we were incubating some to try and hatch chicks as well. It was during this time I decided to experiment with some of our eggs. I wanted to try and preserve them in lime water with an old-time technique called “water glassing”. By us doing this preservation, we had enough eggs to get us by until the chickens started to lay more around February. We only had to buy maybe a dozen eggs from the store during this time. This was awesome, especially since this was during the time eggs started to increase in price. What I do to preserve eggs will be listed below. I’ll place in a future post what we did to get our ladies happy and laying again.

  • 1 ounce pickling lime to every 1 quart of filtered water
  • Use food grade container or use glass jars

  • Be sure to use fresh (1-3 days old) and unwashed so that the pores on the shells remained closed for this technique

  • Leave about 2 inches of liquid above the eggs

  • When getting ready to use eggs rinse with water prior to use (I used my last one at the 6 month mark and they still looked great)


Here is a second recommendation: unless you plan to use fertilized eggs to sell or to hatch more chickens on your own, do not keep a lot of roosters. My husband had a soft spot for our roosters, but we had so many that some started to become mean and would flog at us. There were also multiple at one time trying to mate with our hens, and they were harming the hens, which caused infections and injuries. Dane was away during this time and could not help with this situation. I knew it was time to get rid of the roosters since this job that Dane was on was longer term.

I knew I must butcher the roosters for meat, especially the ones who were getting real mean. The problem was I didn’t watch Dane with the last butchering, and I had no clue what I was doing. When I mentioned this to a friend at church, she was quick to offer help. Her and her husband are off the grid homesteaders and offered to butcher the roosters, plus show me the process! This is when I’d like to direct you to the sidebar and introduce to you this family. They are one of the many families that we experience koninonia with.

Koinonia?!? What is that? Well, let me tell you! In Acts 2:42, it says, “And they continued steadfastly in the apostles’ doctrine and fellowship, in the breaking of bread, and in prayers.” The word fellowship from this scripture in Greek is koinonia. In the early church, they not only went all over and proclaimed Jesus was Lord and Savior, but they also did life together. This was the Church! It wasn’t a building or agenda/program lead service, but a group of people who gathered frequently. They would come together as a community to teach doctrine and encourage each other to live out the apostles’ teachings.

They would also break bread together. They wouldn’t just have a meal together, but have a meal together, while praying and focusing on remembering Jesus Christ. Dane and I truly believe that God brought the Drake family (and many others) into our lives so that we would have a community of believers ready to gather and do life with us!

As silly as it may seem to some, this includes coming and helping this overwhelmed mama of 4 to butcher 7 roosters! During that time, we were able to talk about the Lord. We discussed things we were learning and growing in. We also encouraged one another to keep following the Lord! I love to have them in my life knowing that Christ will be a focus in our fellowship and something we want our kids to see more and more as the Day of the Lord draws near. That they will see koninonia among the Church, and they will be encouraged to continue that with the generations to come.


Click the link for the bags used for storing our butchered chickens. 

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Koinonia: The Drake Family

We are Matt, Kelly, Ben,Mason, and Sophie Drake. Matt and I grew up in Northern Michigan, where Matt worked for his family construction company, and I was an optometrist. We thought we’d live in Michigan our entire lives. Because we both had very successful careers, we owned 2 homes, a boat, four wheelers, snowmobiles, and many other “toys.” We spent weekends we weren’t working at spas, waterparks, overnighters on the boat.  Life was good, or so it seemed. We knew of God, but we didn’t have any kind of relationship with Him. We’d always say, “One day we should go to church,” but we were too busy making the money to support our extravagant lives that we didn’t have time for church. The more money we made, the more money we spent. We had an image to uphold, and we did a great job of that…..until it all came crashing down.

In 2016, I made the decision to leave my very successful business inside a commercial location and enter into a purchase agreement for a private practice. I thought I did it all right and consulted the right people, but I didn’t consult God. Turns out the business was not turning a profit at all, and despite all our best efforts, we were at risk of losing it all.

One day in the car after a bad day, I looked at Matt and said, “Let’s just let it all go and start over somewhere new.”  Where those words came from was a mystery to me at the time, but I know realize the Holy Spirit was urging me to something better. So we packed up anything we could fit in a uhaul and left Michigan. We lived in Colorado for a bit, but it didn’t feel right, so we headed to California. While in California, we found God and the 4 oldest members of our household were Baptized. Things still just didn’t seem quite right, and we kept getting these signs we needed to be in Missouri. We just didn’t see anyway that could happen, but we kept praying. One day, out of nowhere, an ad for some land came up, I showed it to Matt, and 2 hours later, we had land in Missouri.

God had led us to several YouTube channels and books on minimalistic living, living for God and not self, and raising children in a Godly home. We decided we would start our own homestead where our goal would be to be as self-sufficient as possible. I had started homeschooling Ben in 2nd grade due to his adhd issues, and we knew now God wanted me to continue doing so, even though it meant leaving behind my 6 figure income. God was showing us He would provide. We moved to our 20 acres in April of 2021 and have been building our homestead from the ground up , always with God in mind. Instead of living for money and possessions, we find joy in the everyday. We learn new things every day. My kids have witnessed births and deaths, raised chickens and butchered them, helped deliver goats, and bottle fed pigs. They can garden, milk a goat, and shoot their own deer. They know how to entertain themselves, and most importantly, they all have relationships with God. Every day, I see evidence that all those choices we made were led by God. Obedience to Him has led to our home, our successes, and many Godly friendships with people who are doing the same things we are and raising their children with a Kingdom purpose in mind. We thank Him every day for leading Him here, and pray continually for His direction.

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