May News


You might ask why 58 chicks?

Well, 50 roos would provide us more than enough chicken for the year, with plenty to barter with as well, and we wanted to have 8 new hens to take over for our current hens when they slow down.

We made a tough decision a couple of weeks ago. We will not be raising pigs this year. Last year we raised pigs and had pork all year, and with the 25 chickens we processed we were set. We decided that last year was a pork and chicken year and this year will be a beef and chicken year. We have a lot going on this year on the farm. It looks like we may have a couple of calves coming soon. By the way, I am not in charge of breeding here, and hubby’s method of breeding is what (I tease him and) call the “baby maybe” breeding plan (reference here to a great George Carlin line). Our bull just hangs with the ladies year round so we can absolutely expect that we never know when we are expecting. We will be processing said bull this summer, and one of our steers, so we will have lots of beef. We will be getting our freezer licensed (as soon as we get the chicks out of the garage where the freezer is, lol). So with all the chicks, and so much beef and the possibility of calves and the fact that we doubled our garden space, we decided to let the pig idea rest for a year. When November comes around we will trade chickens for pork and that will work perfectly.


When we were building the house and it was just walls and sub floor, I remember standing at this window, which had no window in it yet, and saying this will be my “doing dishes view”. As I did dishes the other night I totally enjoyed watching the cattle work the hillside. How could doing dishes be bad with this view?


Looks can be deceiving. This bread looks delicious right? Wrong. I won’t be making this recipe again. It was completely boring. I will go back to my go to no knead bread. The only problem with the no knead recipe is that if you don’t do your math right, it will be ready to go in the oven at 3am!


The mushrooms keep happening! They are awesome. I hear, from my mushroom ID facebook group that the Chicken of the Woods are coming out in areas near us, so I better get out to the woods and check before I miss anything! These Pheasant backs were good sauteed but only the edges, these ones were so big they rest of them were better for making mushroom broth.


Speaking of the hunt! These are day lily stalks, and they were delicious! Between the mushrooms, the day lily stalks, and all the lambs quarter I have been cooking it’s quickly becoming a free grocery store out there. Definitely a great way to shop!


Time to plug the Shiitake logs. Last year’s logs have been giving a few flushes of mushrooms which have been great with all the asparagus we’ve been eating.  They are my version of going together like peas and carrots.


The cattle have been loving the grass and the long summer like nights. I keep counting them, wondering if one day I will go out and there will be 10 instead of 9. Like I said, baby maybe? The cattle are finally up in the woods grazing too these days and so they have earned their first of three purposes, according to my farming rules of livestock each animal has to earn their place on the farm in three ways. So far the cattle have cost money with no real return. Now they are working the woods and cleaning them up which was why we got them originally. It just took a long time to get all that amount of fencing done. My three things I want the cattle to do include feeding us, cleaning up the woods, and to earn cash if we ever sell calves or one of our other cows.


Last weekend we took a bit of time off to fish. Didn’t catch many but it didn’t much matter. I love rowboats.

8 comments on “May News

  1. Renegade Hollow Farm says:

    We raised pigs a couple of years ago and had 2 butchered. We had a lot of meat! We haven’t raised them since. We bought an extra 11 (well 12, but one got away) chicks, for layers. I would love to have meat chickens, but right now we just don’t have the room in the coop! I can’t imagine 50 of them!

    • Yes two pigs is a whole lot of meat! It’s funny that it seems normal to have 58 birds in a brooder in our garage. Yes butchering day may be two days this year. I wanted to have enough to barter and for the chickens to pay for their own costs:)

      • Renegade Hollow Farm says:

        Do you barter with other farmers living near you?

      • Yep, my neighbor is an organic farmer with 2 greenhouses and a walk in cooler. I barter for a winter storage share of potatoes, carrots and onions for our pork and soon beef. I also barter with a goat farmer to get goat milk. I barter Granola (my business), bone broth and bread for goat milk, depending on what I have and what she needs. Such a great system. Do you barter many things?

      • Renegade Hollow Farm says:

        That’s awesome! I’ve bartered for goats (i cleaned her yard and got 4 registered goats and one non registered from the deal) plus I barter my raw milk for experience. My neighbors are awesome about it. I’m ready to expand though, reach out to more people. My neighbors are older as well, so I can do stuff for them and they will give me equipment they don’t use. I just got a ton of canning supplies for a gallon of milk.

      • Yikes I’m terrible at WordPress replies…sounds like you like to barter as much as I do! Those are great trades!

  2. We raised two pigs last year, and bartered half of one for an equal amount of pastured beef. We’ll get the beef in a few weeks. I think we’ll raise chickens this year, and hopefully ducks, but that’s it for meat the year. I was successful in turkey, bear and deer hunting last year and hope to be again this year. I’ll miss bacon this year!

    • Yes Robin, I can’t say enough about bartering! I have bartered granola, bread and chicken bone broth for goat milk, and pork for a winter’s share of potatoes, onions and carrots and once I even traded a piece of pig liver for a latte in town (the owner has chickens and wanted it for them)! I am so awed and impressed by your hunting!! We are going to do our first deer hunt this Fall. I am excited but need to get a different gun for this. Any recommendations for a light weight gun for hunting deer? Yes, no bacon, now that is a major bummer, but sounds like you have plenty of meat to go around. Where do you live? Thanks for visiting my blog. Do you have one I could follow or do you do things on a farm facebook page? Have a nice day!

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