Drying Morels for next year:)
A surprise flush of mushrooms from last year’s logs!
Magical Spring food!
THIS! The Pea Shoots are from the little kitchen sprouter.
What else has been going on, on the farm? Well it is getting ready time… Get the gardens ready, get the chicken tractors ready, get the pig yard ready, and get the brooder ready, birds come on Monday, all 58 of them! I asked hubby at one point, should I call and change the order to 30 roos, and 8 hens, instead of 50 roos and 8 hens, and he said, why not keep the order as is, what’s the difference between 38 and 58? Well we will see, thankfully the roos are all gone by the beginning of August! We have also gotten some things checked off the list, the Grapes look a lot better than they did after the Winter mess, and we did get all the bare root stock in and the rain has cooperated with watering which eliminates a lot of hose dragging!
In other news…
I got out a couple days after the season opener of Trout fishing season. It was a brief trip, but my goal this summer is to just keep my pole in the car, with the trout regulation book and my tall rubber boots, this way I can stop at some of the many streams I pass all the time. It’s a great time of year on the streams because the weeds are nice and low, by July they weeds will be over my head!
My business, really granola, has gone through some major changes, and although the granola is the same, I am adjusting to this new normal, as my job has changed. I am officially working with an amazing co-packing kitchen, and we have worked hard at getting them to be able to put out granola that is just the same as before when I was baking it. They are still making it in small batches but it is not me baking it anymore. I have retired my baking hat and put on my sales hat. Currently I have a whole heck of a lot of granola to sell, so I will be looking to add lots more stores, cafes and restaurants to my list of customers. This change is all part of the evolution that has occurred since I started the business. When I first started, I was still teaching daily and baking on the weekends, it then progressed to leaving the teaching job and baking in a rental kitchen, but still doing every aspect of the production myself. Now with the change over to a co-packing kitchen, it will change life quite a bit.
I am hoping it gets to a rhythm eventually where I can find a balance between the business and what we are doing on the farm. I consider what I do here to be a big part of our financial picture. The granola business is part of the picture, not buying food at the store is another part of the picture, and selling meat and eggs is a third part of the picture. While the granola business is just starting into a new phase and will first eat money before it makes money, all I can do is look toward the future positively and know that what I am doing here, will soon pair with the granola business and these things I consider to be my contribution to our little economy here. It is really exciting to see all this coming together. Now little business, please prove me right!!!
This was my latest little project. Our garden has a lot of competition from critters, these cages I made are designed to give the little tender plantings a chance against these critters. They will get removed when the plants start to outgrow them, and then they are on their own. I wish the garden was fenced, but with all the fencing a certain someone has had to do for cattle, pigs and chickens, I am not going to be asking for a fence around the garden anytime soon. So, critters, game on! I am hoping these cages help save some small lives, and I mean the plants, not the critters.
Still working on getting the garden beds ready. Rows 1 and 2 (starting at left), still need a lot of work. We have some fresh compost dumped at the front end, and after I put down a barrier layer on top of those two long rows we will spread the compost and add lots more compost on top. The row on the right is ready to go. We always had grass between the three rows, but I am taking over the grass areas with some lasagna style garden beds to add more space. Yesterday I got the first row planted, and the two little beds in between planted as well. Now to finish preparing the two other long beds as well as the in between rows. Lots of work ahead.
The tiny high tunnel is producing lots of delicious lettuce, Spinach and radishes. Ironically some of the things I planted did not grow, but what grew in it’s place was Lamb’s Quarter, and I am going to leave it there. It’s as good as Spinach and has more vitamins than Spinach. While it looks a little untidy growing in my carefully planted tunnel, it will be delicious, and I will keep this little gift in there.
Then this happened. A great Sunday morning brunch at a fantastic casual farm to table restaurant with great music provided from my wonderful farmer neighbor and his friends. Nothing like a little Sunday morning sing-a-long with friends, to the tunes of Willie Nelson, Old Crow Medicine show, John Prine and more. A room full of happy people kicking back and taking a break from weekend chores. I did not see one person there that seemed “stressed” or “too busy”, or looking at their phones, they were just mindful of the moment and enjoying it all. Just one of the many, many reasons I love living here.