Winterizing the Farm


November has passed and with it the last of the Thanksgiving Turkeys! We are just about finished up with the processing of the poultry for this season with the exception of possibly doing a few stewing hens.

Thanksgiving was a relaxing, joyous one, spent with family and friends. We got our Christmas tree the Saturday after that and enjoyed putting it up together.

December is here and we’ve been busy with winterizing the farm, finding hay to feed the stock now that the pastures aren’t growing. We’ve built up quite a herd of heifers and have decided to sell a few to take the pressure of wintering them over on hay. Dad took pictures of them all and we put them up on our big white board and everyone gets to vote for the ones they’d like to keep. Of course, older kid’s votes count for more as they are able to weigh in on important factors such as, was their mama a good milk cow? Is she friendly? Etc. But it’s fun to all cast our vote.

We also have some fun social things lined up such as caroling, weddings and seeing the Christmas Carol in live production in Smithfield!

What have you been up to? Do you have any special plans for December?



Recent Photos

Here is a collection of pictures from the past month or two. (Some of them not the best quality) It gives you a little insight into our recent “happenings”.


There have been Saturday evening bonfires…
Epic photo opportunities.
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Tailgating at the bonfire
Farmers Market with sisters
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New babies at Church! Baby Liberty
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Baby Grace
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I love working in the nursery!
Gospel Conference in N.C, that Katie and I attended. It was such a blessing!
Up in the balcony
Dancing during fellowship time
Kevin Swanson
Volleyball fun
Dancing fun
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Unloading feed
Photo fun
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A lovely farm wedding! A dear, family friend of our’s married his sweetheart Nov 15th.
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Helping out in the “kitchen” before the wedding.
A fast glimpse of the bride as she walked down “the aisle”
The trap door in the barn used to haul cider and hot chocolate back and forth.
The happy couple as they cut the cake.
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Starbucks after a busy turkey pick up day!
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With friends at Starbucks
Friends lending a helping hand
A recent batch of rabbits

We Used to Have Goats…

goat face

We used to have goats. We enjoyed them while we had them, for the most part. They definitely had their moments. (I.e dragging little girls across the pasture after milking, getting out of their pen, and then there was that one who would bite…) We kept them as milk goats and had a small dairy goatshare program. Well, a few years ago, during our annual planning season, we were assessing the farm, realizing we were running out of grass and so one of the herbivorous species had to go, and we decided that it would be the goats. It was a hard decision to make because one of the reasons we started goat shares originally was because we had some customers who needed it for health reasons. We finally decided to go ahead with it and were glad after we had done it, feeling like we had made the right choice in the long run.

Well, fast forward a few years and totally unrelated, some dear, family friends of ours are getting married! The parents of the groom asked us if we could milk a couple of their goats Saturday morning on our way up to the wedding. Sure, no problem, we’ve got this!

We left a little early so we’d have plenty of time to get to the wedding. We thought about bringing a change of clothes. Nah, we’re pros, right? We can do this in church clothes, no problem. (A gross underestimation) As an after thought, I grabbed a bag of baby wipes so we could clean our hands afterwards.

Everything was going according to plan and after we did our farm chores we hopped over to our friend’s house to milk the goats. We stood outside the goat pen, admiring the small fortress our friends had built for their goats. Man, we could have used something like this!

“This will be a piece of cake,” we thought to ourselves, hitching up our skirts and letting ourselves in at the gate. Our friends had said not to worry about saving the milk so we planned to hold their collars and milk them out on the ground, ten minutes tops and we’d be out of there, right? Nope.

Time makes the memory a great forgiver.

A small chase ensued for the first goat which would have none of being still while we tried to milk her in the pen.

Fine. We’ll take her up to the milk stantion, no big deal. I took hold of one goat while Maddie got another.

My goat jumped up onto the stantion easy enough but when I began to milk her she started kicking for all she was worth. I doggedly kept at it and as she smeared the sleeve of my church coat with grime, the grim realization of what we had taken on began to steal over me. Good thing I had packed the baby wipes.

We repeated the process several times until all five goats were milked. One of the goats was in heat and so the buck was chasing her around and it was all we could do to escape his horrible stink. (Any farmers out there will know what I mean)

After a harrowing escape, all the goats were milked, including the one in heat and the buck was successfully avoided. We locked them up again and then proceeded to wipe down with the baby wipes, praying we wouldn’t show up at the wedding smelling like buck goat and kicking ourselves for not bringing a change of clothes.

“Hey, I brought lotion!” Maddie said, so we slathered some lotion over the wet parts and kept going.

Well, the wedding went off beautifully and no one said anything about a goat smell so I guess we were good. It sure made for a good laugh though! Raising goats is not for the faint of heart, that’s for sure.