May 22, 2011

long overdue update and some news . . .

I'm so behind on things. It's been a challenging spring. I know I've said that before but it really has been. The rain has been killing us. We managed to get into the fields with a tractor to transplant kale last week before the rain started again and now we're back to the waiting game. Honestly, we're done feeling stressed and overwhelmed about being so behind this season. There is absolutely nothing we can do about it. Nothing to do but wait. Everyone else is experiencing the same rain and it's putting a damper on their plans too, farmers or not. Please just know that we farmers have it exceptionally rough this year. Be kind, understanding and offer some love. In the meantime, we've continued weeding and transplanting by hand. It's hard on the back but we have to get food growing somehow!

The hens
The hens are doing great! The older girls are loving life outside and so are the little girls. They're in eggmobile training and they have taken to sunshine and grass like fish to water. I might say this every time but I think they're our best flock yet. So sweet and well behaved. They're really a joy to have around.

And remember our favorite little white girl? Well, she's still Nate's one and only. He's smitten.

The lambs
They're great too. They're outside nibbling on grass and slowly getting less and less bottle feedings as the days go on. (yay!) Meet Clarice and Midge!

Clarice and the milk mama

The chicks

We got broiler chicks a few weeks ago and they're doing really well. They're already much older than these photos. They're looking like chickens now and will be ready to move outside very soon. Here are some photos of their younger days...

The goats
We have 2 goats on the farm, Tiny and Sugar Pie. Sugar Pie is Tiny's grandmother and the two are inseparable. Sadly, Sugar Pie left this world last week. It has been a challenge keeping Tiny's spirits up since then but he's making progress. It's been heartbreaking hearing him cry for her and watching him continue to search for her. He's finally getting back to his old self though. Poor guy. We miss you, Sugar Pie.

Tiny and Sugar Pie ~ Summer, 2010

The high tunnel

... is DONE!!! WooHoo!!! Many thanks to Nate and Greg for their countless hours of stress, sweat and frustration. And thanks to all of those who donated their time to help!

The farmers
Nate, Greg and Lynn, traveled to Southern Virginia last weekend to attend a workshop on working oxen. All of this rain has gotten us thinking . . . we could get into the fields to do work with animals a lot earlier when it's too wet for tractors. Also, they require a lot less fuel and engine maintenance so they just may be in our future plans. The gang learned a lot and had lots of experiences to share upon their return. Nate's off this week to a 3 day grazing school in Ligonier to learn from a master grazer.

This farmer
Well, this farmer has some news to share which might explain why I'm so behind on things. I'm pregnant and the baby is due in early December. This has definitely contributed to this being one of the hardest springs EVER. I have much to say about farming and pregnancy as well as much, much more but right now, I'm trying to decide if this farm blog is the place for that sort of thing. I'm thinking of starting a personal blog so if you're interested in following me on this new journey as well, stay tuned. And if anyone has any feedback on that, I'm open.

Me, miss hen and future farmer baby

If you thought that was it . . . think again. There are actually 2 babies scheduled to arrive on the farm in early December. Jen's pregnant too! I know it sounds crazy and impossible but that's just the way it turned out. Now I can really be honest about how hard it's been around here and quite frankly, we couldn't have made it through our first trimester without our hard-working intern, Lynn. She's truly amazing and has insisted on working while we were feeling awful and trying to sneak in much-needed naps. She's so brave and understanding taking on a farm with two pregnant women. Thank you, Lynn. You rock!

Future farmers in the making at Blackberry Meadows Farm, folks!


  1. i think its great the way woman can sync up with each other-you and jen being pregnant at the same time doesnt surprise me and how grand that you'll be able to share with each other the entire journey-Sweet!-take good care of yourself, nate and the baby-Happy Growing!

  2. You look beautiful! Congratulations to both of you. So exciting, so fun.
    (And, I'd like a lamb for my backyard, please :)

  3. Thanks ladies! We're pretty exhausted around here, but excited. This farm is in for a big change come December.