Hello beautiful peeps,
I know I missed last week. Sorry about that. Life is very hectic these days. I’m stilling canning something every week. This week it was spiced pear jam. I love this stuff. I learned it from my mother. A nice subtle blend of ginger do not overwhelm the cinnamon and nutmeg. It’s fabulous if I do say so myself.
INDEPENDENCE MARKET: No word yet on my place for tomorrow. No doubt I will be in a similar location. This is the second to last market. After October 8th I will be switching to Wednesday. That is to support the online market and Herd Share Pickups will also happen on Wednesdays. Also, I will be there for both Christmas Markets. I don’t have those dates right at hand but will keep you informed.
Sheep and Mack
The vet was out to preg check the cows and we had her look at the sheep as well. It was as good thing. That growth on the ewe was really big and gross. She fixed her right up and that ewe is nearly healed. Lambert, the ram was a different story. He was having problems with his hooves. She checked that out and recommended we give him foot baths. We did that two of three times. Actually all of the sheep got the foot baths, just in case.
We also took time to worm them all. It has been several years since we had to use a chemical wormer. However, the stress of the coyotes and dog attacks must have weakened their systems. All had some worm load and Lambert was in really bad shape. He is still weak. Hopefully, he will turn the corner soon and be back to normal. The worms made him extremely anemic. We don’t like to use chemicals, but there are times when the life of the animal depends on it. This was one of those times.
The vet has preg checked all the girls and we had mixed results. Six were artificially inseminated and three are pregnant. A fourth, Cloud, was pregnant but miscarried. The vet said not to worry. If it was a late-term abortion there could be a problem. But early on it is common to abort if the fetus is in the least compromised.
Buttercup got some pain meds for her injured leg. She is not pregnant and is going to need to be replaced. The vet says she is overweight and as she ages it is less and less Likely that she will conceive. At this point she is already 11. Cows begin to wind down after 10 or so years, though they can continue to have calves past 15. It depends on the cow.
Claire, Butter and Luna were all positive for pregnancy. Everyone is healthy at the moment and we look forward to the spring births. We don’t milk through the winter. The cows need a break to make calves and we need a break from milking everyday, seven days a week. However, we are considering breeding Rosie for a fall birth next year. She did not take this time round and perhaps we will try what is called calf sharing with her next fall.
Calf sharing is when the calf gets to drink milk all day. Then we separate them (they can still touch noses but no nursing) overnight. In the morning, we get the milk and put them back together again for the day. It’s a lot more management but we may try it as an experiment. As long as the calf is nursing, we can even take a few days off and not milk at all. The calf will get all the milk, day and night.
Remember last time I was saying we had the the quail eggs. They will be hatching on Saturday. I’m excited as usual to have babies again. It is a little late in the season. The weather is much cooler. However, these birds are hardy and will be fully feathered after two weeks and completely capable of handling the cold.
We are starting to get lots of eggs. We get the normal amount from the breeding crew but are now getting eggs from the group in the penthouses. We will be keeping as many as 20 hens from that group. So lots of eggs are coming. When the babies from the current incubator set are two weeks old, we will have to rearrange everything. I have no idea how that will look. It depends on how many chicks hatch on Saturday.
Creamery and Scott’s Other Stuff
Scott radiation treatments are going well. He is starting experience side effects. The doctors warned him about all of this and there are various treatments to assist him throughout the process. He usually takes a nap every day. We are about two and a half weeks into the process. All is going as planned.
Scott has determined that he needs to put up some waterproof panels in the milk room. The are held in place with glue. He needs to get them installed before the weather gets too cold for the glue to hold well. Also, he noted that before putting in conduit, there are some walls that need to be painted. That also needs to happen before it gets too cold.
The electric plans are forming in Scott’s mind. He is watching lots of YouTube videos and making plans. Over the winter we hope to make significant progress there. We shall see.
My garden is finishing up. The peppers revived with the rain we got. However, I am so done with peppers. They are actually blooming again. This is typical for peppers. They are a perennial plant in Mexico. Here they just keep going until the frost takes them. I have a 5-gallon bucket full of pepperoncini peppers. That is a task for next week. More pickled pepperoncini. Anybody need that special Christmas gift for the person who has everything? I have lots of pickled pepperoncini to help you out!!
The basil is still waiting for me to cut it and hang it to dry. The parsley also needs to be harvested and dried. It really took off again after the rains. The oregano and thyme are in my strawberry patch. I will want to cut some of that and dry it. Herbs dried at the end of the year are wonderful for restocking my spice jars.
That freezer full of tomatoes is still waiting on me. .
That’s it for farm news. Now on to the farmer’s market update.
INDEPENDENCE AND WYTHEVILLE FARMER’S MARKETS
I will be at the Independence Farmer’s Market on Friday 9 – 1 and at the Wytheville Farmer’s Market on Saturday 8 – 12.
ITEMS OF NOTE AT THIS WEEK’S MARKETS: Mild and Medium Hot Salsa in pint jars, sweet and sour pepper relish (also in pint jars), and the spiced pear jam I mentioned above. And I have pickled quail eggs in 1/2 pint jars.
I still some have apple pie filling, peach pie filling and blueberry pie filling. A deep dish pie requires 48 oz of filling. I’ve got you covered. Two 24 oz jars or a quart and pint jar.
The pickled pepperoncinis are in pint jars. I have a variety with red pepper if you like a bit of spice. And there is one jar of pickled banana peppers. Those are great on sandwiches (think Subway).
As far as jam, I have pepper jam in 1/2 pints. I also have strawberry jam and apple pie jam in pint jars. Again, these are great Christmas gifts.
I will have quail eggs by the dozen and quail meat in 1 lb packages.
We have ground goat (approx 1 lb), grass-fed ground beef (approx 1 lb) and ground lamb (approx 1 lb). I also have a very limited amount of lamb cuts. Loin chops, rib chops, stew/kabob meat and two lovely petit legs.
Herd Share Peeps, no word yet on my location at the Independence market. I shouldn’t be too hard to find 🙂 — look for me in any of my previous places.
I’ll see you in my usual location at the Wytheville Farmers’ Market.
Add on as you desire. Yogurt, milk and all cheeses and butter are at your service. Looking forward to seeing you on Friday, Saturday and/or Tuesday.
You can pickup at the Independence Market on Fridays between 9 am and 1pm, the Wytheville Market on Saturdays between 8:00 am and 12:00 noon, at the farm Saturdays 3 pm to 5 pm or Tuesdays 10:00 am to noon. Email me to let me know if you want anything extra this time.
I still have raw milk cheese shares and a couple of milk shares available. Contact me via email (email@example.com) or phone (276-694-4369).
As always, we love meeting you in person. You can find us at the Wytheville Farmers Market on Saturday from 8:00 am to Noon. We are at Independence Farmers’ Market on Fridays from 9:00 am to 1 pm.
As always, you may visit us at our dairy farm in Claudville, Virginia Tuesdays from 10 am to 12 noon and Saturday afternoons from 3 pm to 5 pm. Find out how we raise our animals and why you will love the taste of tradition that is inherent in all of our products. Herd share holders will be able to see up close how their cows are cared for and the cheese operation and where it is stored.
Peaceful Heart FarmCast
In this week’s podcast I’m giving you details on getting the two cows to freezer camp. It was quite the fiasco with the neighbors calling at 9:15 at night for us to come and get them out of their yard. “Homestead Update and Health Update” also has more information about Scott and I as we journey through cancer treatment.
I want to follow up on my previous FarmCast, The Taste of Cheese where I talked about developing your expertise with using descriptive words. The FREE downloads of Classifying Cheese by Type and Category and Expand Your Cheese Vocabulary are still available at our website. Please stop by and get your FREE resources.
You can LISTEN TO THE PODCAST HERE. Or, if you have an Alexa device, just say: “Alexa, play podcast Peaceful Heart FarmCast.”