Hi! I’m Jessica – I founded Chickens+You and for all intents and purposes, I’ll be your guide here!
If you’ve been following my blog, you may have noticed my passion for chicken nutrition and feeding. I want you to understand just how dedicated I am to this cause and why I’ve made it a focal point for my team.
It is only through a very real, very deep love for natural food production, ethical livestock keeping, and self-sustainability that we produce the content that we do. My journey into chicken nutrition and feeding is rooted in a solid foundation, including formal education and hands-on experience in the field.
In case you’re not sure as to how someone finds a passion for homegrown crops and chickens, I’ve written a short bio about me and how I came to start my humble blog. I hope that you learn a bit about me, my team, and, most importantly, decide to become a part of the Chickens+You family!
I pursued my interest in animal nutrition by studying the subject at university. It was during these academic years that I began to grasp the importance of providing the best possible nutrition to animals, particularly chickens, for their health and well-being.
After completing my studies, I embarked on a career as a livestock feed nutritionist with a prominent feed manufacturer in the United States. This role allowed me to work closely with a wide range of livestock, with a significant focus on optimizing the nutrition and feeding practices for chickens. It was during this time that I honed my expertise and passion for chicken nutrition, discovering the intricate balance required to raise healthy and productive chickens.
My journey into chicken nutrition and feeding wasn’t solely driven by education and professional experience but also by my upbringing and love for homesteading.
I watched my parents doing a lot of work in the garden when I was growing up. Our wonderful climate allowed us to grow all kinds of crops and keep small livestock, such as (you guessed it) chickens!
My earliest memories were of spending the afternoons in the garden with my dad, while he tended to the various plants he kept. My mom spent mornings feeding our chickens (and pig) and collecting eggs. I benefited from a perfect mix between city life, living and schooling in Austin, and farm life once I got home.
These early experiences formed the foundation of my passion for ethical and natural food production, especially when it came to chickens.
When my son was about three, I told my husband that I was thinking of starting a small garden patch at the back of our house. I thought about all the time that I spent in the garden with my parents when I was growing up and felt as if I was letting my son down by denying him that same experience.
It started off pretty small, probably 3-foot square, and with only one bag of store-bought fertilizer to prep the soil. My parents came over for lunch and, needless to say, I got an ear full about how poor a job I had done. The following day my dad came by to help me properly section my patch, prep the soil, and brought an assortment of seeds to choose from.
After that, the bug had bitten me. Producing food for my family to eat was a source of great pride and, coupled with the savings on our food bill, made complete sense as a way of life.
Chickens, from the Beginning
As I mentioned, my parents had raised chickens since I could remember and, as I got into the practice of growing and consuming my own crops at home, the next step seemed simple – raising chickens.
I immediately fell in love. Chickens, beyond providing you with an endless supply of eggs, are great pets to keep. Sure, they can be smelly, they can be noisy at times, but they become a big part of your life, and tending to them became a form of meditation for me.
I advocate for as natural a feed of chickens as possible, which meant that my homesteading went hand in hand with chicken keeping.
How Writing Truly Unlocked My Passion
Before I started growing my crops and raising chickens, I worked as a freelance writer. As I mentioned earlier, my time as a child was predominantly dedicated to artistic practices. Drawing, painting, music, and writing all formed a huge part of my life and led me to pursue a career in creativity.
Despite having a love for the work that I was doing, I felt that I was not living up to my full potential by producing content for industries and companies that truly held no significant value in my life.
That changed after about four years of homesteading and chicken keeping. I decided that it was time for me to make a change. I thought long and hard about the things that meant most to me. First, of course, came family. My husband and children are the most important things in my life and spending time with them meant more enjoyable days. Second, to that, was my chickens and crops. While I enjoyed my work, I felt that I could make a more significant impact by channeling my creativity and knowledge of animal nutrition into something that truly resonated with my values. I simply adore the fact that my time and energy directly affect my family’s diet and positively affect the nutritional value of the things that they consume.
It was when I truly thought about what was important to me and what made me happy, that I realized; I had to start Chickens+You!
Changing Lives One Post at a Time
Perhaps my favorite part about running Chickens+You is that I get to help others not only find a passion for natural means of food production, but also in gaining healthier lives. Each post that goes up here mindfully considers the health aspect of you, your family, and the livestock that you keep.
As we encourage more readers to adopt this way of life, we significantly reduce the number of unhealthy lives in the world that we live in. This is the core of why my team, and I do what we do.
Protecting the Planet One Home at a Time
Beyond healthier lives, homesteading and small-scale livestock keeping gives us a chance to reduce the volume of pollutants introduced into the environment by traditional food manufacturers. This means that our work directly impacts the longevity of the environment and aids in reducing the impact that we have on it.
To further ensure that our blog promotes sustainability, we value products that are produced ethically and sustainably so that we are conscious to promote companies that help protect the environment.
With all this said, I am truly hopeful that you will join our little community of afternoon farmers! We strive to make the lives of our readers and their livestock the best they can possibly be and having you become an active part of our blog allows us to keep changing lives and helping our environment heal and grow!