Meet BC Chicken Farmers Carolyn

Meet Carolyn

Carolyn farms with her husband Lance, three boys, and two dogs. They are famous among friends for their roasted beer can chicken on the BBQ. The meat is juicy and the skin so crispy and flavourful.

Describe a typical day for you on your farm.

Lance and I try to divide the barn chores so that it makes it easier for us.  Lance will check the barn on his day off or before his work.  He wakes up around 6 am and enjoys peace and quiet before our whole household wakes in noise and demands.  Then he will drive around the corner to his mom’s house where her barn is and check all of the control panels to make sure the feed, water, air and humidity are all at optimal levels.  Then he will put on his coveralls and rubber boots to enter into the barn.  The noises you want to hear are happy ‘cheeps’ and ‘coos’ and to see the chickens happily running around eating and drinking freely.  Once you walk from one end of the barn and back again a few times, you can leave the barn.  The chicken results are recorded in a computer.

If Lance can’t get to the barn in the mornings, I will do the ‘walk through’.  This way it gives us both a lot of experience handling the birds.  My favourite stage of raising the chickens is the first week they arrive.  They will follow any sound you make on the first day after they hatch.  The boys and I think this is hilarious because if you are silent and still, they don’t seem to notice you, but if you speak or cough the chicks will flock to you and you will be surrounded by hundreds of little yellow heads.  Sometimes the boys find their favourite chick and let it ride around on their shoulder.  I am still waiting for one to poop on them but it hasn’t happened yet.  That will be hilarious.

Describe your experience on set shooting for the Chicken Squad campaign.

Lance and I were pretty excited about getting to do something that didn’t involve washing machines, ovens or grocery stores.  I really didn’t know what would be so interesting about our lives and who we are.  During the audition, I felt relaxed and enjoyed watching all of us make fools of ourselves.  During the shoot it allowed me to see a different side of Lance and the boys.  Lance was hilarious trying to be a bad guy and seeing the boys interacting with the crew during the audition was a highlight.

It was fun to be out of the role of mom and dad for a few hours and pretend to be like movie stars. The filming left an impression on the boys because for days after they would pretend to be the ‘Chicken Squad’ arresting the bad guys. I learned that being in front of a camera isn’t easy. You feel very vulnerable and extremely aware of saying or doing the wrong thing.  I am amazed at how long it took to get the scene perfect and how much attention to detail is needed.

Tell me about your family.

I think we are like everyone else.  Trying to make a living and pay off bills.  We aren’t afraid to work hard but we also know that our time with our kids is short.  Having three boys has taught Lance and I that we can’t control everything. Sometimes I feel very overwhelmed with the responsibility of farming and family life. We have two big dogs that make us laugh a lot.  Mocha, our large lab, has a favourite rock that if he walks by it he jumps on it and starts barking and howling at it.  His howling makes our other dog ‘Charlie’ howl too and this makes the boys laugh and they try to get Mocha jumping on the rock more.  Our two cats catch a lot of mice and leave them in the barn for us discover.  We’ll see what discoveries the next years of our life will bring.