Friday, August 28, 2009

First fruits

The growing season has flown by and all of our hard work is beginning to pay off! We have an abundance of food on the farm! It is an exciting time! I am scrambling to find ways to prepare and preserve all the food from the garden, but it feels like such a blessing! We have lots of eggs and both cow's milk and goats milk. The other day I made a big omlette and was very happy when I realized that the whole thing came from the farm except the mushrooms! We also processed out 4 roosters and put them in the freezer. They were funny creatures and they will be missed a little though.

Zucchini and hot peppers

Lily and I took a walk out to the apples trees the other day to check on their ripeness. We were excited to discover that there are a couple varieties of apples that seem perfectly ready and a another that isn't far off. We spent the rest of the day mowing and clearing around the tress so that we could get to the fruit. As with everything on this farm, there is alot of work to do to bring things back to working order. The orchard is horribly overgrown after so many years of neglect. In all there are 5 apple trees and 1 pear tree. The pears are still very green and hard though.

The apples are a beautiful variegated red and green and have a crisp sour taste. They will be great for pies, applesauce and cider.

Lily lost her front tooth last week, can you see? It has changed the way she talks a little, it's so funny!

I love this photo, but I am a little embarrased about her fingernails! They are so dirty. I guess, she is a farm kid!

This is Radio Calendula, and yes it really is that orange!

Won't be long before I am going to have to learn to make Sour Kraut!

There is a row of Sunflowers along the fence of the garden that have gotten to be 7 or 8 feet tall and they are stunning! Especially at sunset.

I will be honest with you though, all of this beautiful stuff came from this weed infested and overgrown garden:

I love to show off the stuff I pick, but I am a little embarrased to show off the garden because for the most part the weeds are larger than the plants! You kind of have to hunt thru the weeds to find the produce. That's ok, we'll do better next year!

My favorite cow ever, Foxy.

Please pray for us as we continue to look for a place to live. We are feeling torn about leaving the country and returning to the city, and confused about whether to rent or purchase a home and I am feeling very anxious to know where we are going. I never imagined we still wouldn't know at this point, especially with school starting next week!

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Where oh where do we go?

So we thought we'd be moving today. We had planned on renting a house about a mile from the farm and we were supposed to start moving in today, but we found out on Monday that it all feel thru. This is a very hard readjustment for us and we are struggling with it and confused about what to do now. We are grateful though because as disappointed as we are about the major change in plans, we did pray specifically that it wouldn't work out if it wasn't the right thing for our family. So please pray for us, everything seems a little uncertain right now, and we are desperate for God's guidance in our decisions. As much as we love living at the farm, we are ready to have our own house and our own routine. We had our hearts set on being close enough to still be involved on a daily basis, but I guess we'll just have to wait and see how things turn out.

If you know of anyone who is renting a 4 bedroom house for a reasonable price or needs a house sitter for the winter let us know!

As for the farm, things are going very well. The number of animals seems to be increasing exponentially. We have three new goats, two new sheep, and more chickens than I can count. It is so fun to see the babies following their mommas around the farm. There are 40 chickens of which the females are being raised into new laying hens and the roosters will become dinner. There are 100 brand new little chicks that are being raised for meat and another batch to be ordered in the next week or so.

Three of the hens that went broody successfully hatched 8 chicks and are doing well.

This chicken made a nest behind an old sewing machine in the upper part of the barn and hatched 4 chicks all on her own. One poor little chick was stuck in his shell and Jenna helped it along a little. It was very weak and we didn't think it would make it, but after a couple hours in an incubator we returned it to it's mother and it is doing fine!

We are looking forward to harvesting apples and pears soon and we have been eating tomatoes, broccoli and herbs from the garden. I am not really looking forward to the digging to harvest the potatoes but we are going to have lots of them! Stay tuned, we are planning a harvest party for the fall, but in the meantime let me know if you want to come out and visit!

Saturday, August 15, 2009


The new Rich and Jen. We are farmers now. What do you think? Do we look it?

We are planning on renting a house very near the farm for the next year. I really thought this would just be a summer adventure and that we would end up back in the city, but we have fallen in love with farming. We even have a couple of our very own goats. We are making some major decisions right now about housing and school, so please pray for our family and our community as we sort things out. I'll let you know as soon as I do what we'll be doing.

If you'd like to come out and visit the farm and see what we've been up to, let me know! There are lots of animals out here now and the garden is growing. It's been an amazing transformation over the last few months. If you were out last fall or early this spring, you'll be amazed.

Peace and Blessings!