Welcome to Farm & Furrow and my inaugural post on the Field Notes Blog. Getting started is never easy and knowing where to begin our farm story has been a tough one. I was kinda hoping it was going to be like a new clutch of eggs under a broody hen. You simply ignore the squawking, back away calmly, and wait three weeks...nature will take care of itself. Turns out, ideas don't hatch all by themselves.
So I will start with answering a question: Why Farm & Furrow? To put it simply, when someone asked me where I and my family lived I wanted to say, "Out a country road". To me it would signify an existence, not just an address. A small part of mine and my husband's childhoods reclaimed and reinvented. I had noticed my kids noses stuck in electronics and their tendency to take for granted the work put into the simple things. To be honest, perhaps I really noticed it in myself. So I and my husband decided to leave the suburbs and asphalt behind for five acres and chores. It was a really smart move.
We hadn't settled in long when my husband started making plans for a hobby farm. Just like the newbies we were, we purchased an incubator, ordered some hatching eggs and stuck them right in the second they were delivered. One little Lavender Orpington hatched out of 14, and I must admit I wasn't feeling like a successful future farmer. After a trip to Rural King to purchase an emotional support chick (and coming home with an additional 12!) I quickly realized that our farm story was going to be an adventure. I mean we hadn't thought about a coop yet.
I promise, we have made progress since then.
We have a coop (in fact we have 4, working on number 5).
Learned you have to invest a little money to get quality birds.
Lost a few battles with predators, but won the war!
Squealed with joy at each pullet egg that brought a new color to the basket.
Had our hearts broke when we lost beloved members of our stock.
Realized you must have grow outs of each chicken breed each year.
Became addicted to the fascinating science of egg color genetics.
Took on a bathroom remodel in the midst of Covid and distance learning and rocked it!
This year we are taking on a new project: Olde English Babydoll Southdown lambs. One look at their sweet teddy bear faces that always have a ready smile, and I knew I needed that kind of woolly love in my life. We have two black ewes and one white ram purchased from a breeder (LD Livestock) in Missouri and should be picking them up in June. I let the kiddos pick the names: so Ember, Ashly, and Pharaoh need to prepare themselves to be adored. I need to hug a lamb!
Beyond that we will just be hanging out on the farm this year. Improving my olive egger project, finally putting in the front landscaping, introducing Reba to the lambs, gardening, and working on an upstairs bathroom remodel.
As you can tell, we will have a lot to chat about!