OH MY GOODNESS, WE HAVE BEEN BUSY!!! (OR OVERWHELMED)
The busy season of the apple orchard has started early this year. My husband has been working non-stop on planting and cutting and baling hay. I love warm weather, but I miss winter when he is home more often. I have been trying to keep up with the kids, house, school, work and the animals. I am getting little pieces of everything done here and there. But definitely not to where I want it to be. I would love to have a neat and weed free garden and front walk area. But so far, I can’t keep up with it. I was hoping to have the school year finished by late July, but looks like it will be mid August. And my house, I would rather not talk about how it isn’t picked up or clean. But I am taking one day at a time and we will get there. This week I am going to do two posts. One about our farm, and on the other post, I am linking up with a couple other bloggers for “this is how we do it: Dinner” That will be an interesting post.
To get you up to speed on what is going on around here. We have gotten a few animal things accomplished. We finally were able to get a shearer in to sheer the orchard’s sheep and our one sheep, Olaf. He looks like a totally different animal now. I wish he could keep his wool on all year, but poor guy was getting hot. It was very interesting to see how the shearer sheered the sheep. I was really hoping to learn to do it over the winter, but the class that was offered was a couple hours away for two days. I didn’t see how I could make it, but maybe next year.
We ordered red ranger broilers. They will be butchered later in July, and yes I will be taking them to someone for processing. I don’t think I can do that yet. We ordered 35 broilers and my sisters and mom wanted to try a few so they are taking some. We will have 18 left for ourselves from this batch. I am hoping to do a couple more batches, in the future we will be building a chicken tractor. I have the broilers in a room in the coop, and they are stinking up the entire coop. I know that coops don’t smell the best to begin with, the broilers definitely add a lot of stink to it. We are also raising two turkeys with the broilers. I am excited to have our own meat. We even picked up another freezer just for meat.
My sister and her friends hatched 36 chicks. I was not planning on that many hatching. Feeding all of them plus my chickens is getting really expensive. So we are going to sell the chicks. Hopefully they sell soon and we can use the money to put towards other things needed for the animals. I have 19 hens that are laying, and 15 that should be laying in a few weeks. Plus another 17 that will be laying in November. My little egg business is doing so well that I can’t keep up with people that want to purchase our eggs. I hope to use the cute sign I made to let people know we have eggs available. But so far I can’t put it out. We have our hens on an organic, non-GMO, and soy free feed. The eggs taste amazing with the chickens on the feed. I am happy I can provide our family and other families with healthy eggs. Did I mention how good they are?
We also got our breeding bucks! They are only 3 weeks old, so by November they should be ready to breed our girls. I am excited to have the goat kids. I don’t want kids in the winter so I am very happy that the bucks won’t be ready till November or maybe December. We should hopefully have bouncing kids in April or May of 2016! For now I am getting practice on the bucklings. They are so much fun. We named them Fred and Ricky, cause we have a Lucy and Ethel. The girls don’t seem to mind them that much right now. I have them out during the day with the does and Olaf. And then I bring them in our garage in a dog crate at night. We bottle feed them a couple times a day and they are starting to learn to eat hay and drink water. We did get the boys some new John Deere collars, they are not wearing the pink ones anymore.
The soap I made a few weeks ago is ready to try. My husband started using it. His hands are normally scratchy and have calluses on his palms and fingers from work and playing guitar. He has been using it for a week now and his hands are so soft! It doesn’t look like he is a farmer or a guitar player. Hopefully his hands don’t hurt after playing at church this weekend.
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