Wow, what an amazing season! SO many inspiring things happened on the farm this season! We feel so blessed to have such an enthusiastic crew, loyal customers, and a beautiful valley in which to work and raise our family. This is the time of year that we like to reflect on the season and make our notes as to what worked and what didn't, etc. We feel like we had a pretty good season and since in life we are always learning, we like to think of each season as part of our ongoing farm education. Here are some of the highlights from our very busy season:
Our intern program really started to take off this year and we were lucky to have not just one but two wonderful interns who put in their all and stayed through until the middle of October. We will miss them and hope that this farm experience will aid in their future endeavors in the food industry.
As for the animals, we had a great year for calves and piglets with many newborns to ooh and ahhh at all summer. Chicks are always fun and the farm tour groups always got a treat since the brooder was perpetually full! We raised 2,000 broiler chickens on the farm this year which is quite a feat! Moving the chicken tractors takes up the most time and effort but we believe that because of these daily moves, their health and taste is superior. We also added more lambs to the farm this season. Last year we raised only ten but this year we decided to raise forty. The lambs were raised entirely on pasture and did a great job cleaning up the rose bushes in the field behind Chris's parent's house! So if you love lamb like us, you know where to find it!
This summer we started a monthly potluck dinner called Food and Thought. We had a pretty good turnout each month and really enjoyed hearing everyone's food stories. We hope to do the potluck again next year so keep that in mind for next summer.
This September we were visited by Kathleen Merrigan, Deputy Secretary of the USDA. We are inspired by her Know Your Farmer, Know Your Food campaign and were feeling pretty honored to have her on the farm so she could see all of the great programs that the USDA and NRCS have been able to offer a small farm like ours.
We will continue to be busy all winter long but much less so than in the summer. We will be looking forward to our winter farm conferences and catching up on some reading with our feet up next to the woodstove.
Come see us soon!