What a fantastic time! Our local chapter of the Holistic Mom’s Network planned (actually all of the work was done by one of the mamas) a trip to a local farm that raises cage free, free-range/pastured eggs and chicken, pastured turkey, free-foraging pork and grass-finished beef! It was SUCH a treat and what a sweet family!
The farm was only about 30 minutes away and easy to get to. They only have about 7-10 acres, but it is amazing what they are able to do with it! It is obvious there is never a dull moment on the farm and SO much work to do! They have three young children under the age of 3 ½ and I’m sure that alone would be enough to keep them busy!
We learned so much! And we even got to “help” with some of the easier farm chores! We helped (more like watched) Farmer Jessie move the chicken coop to fresh grass for feeding and so that the ground doesn’t get overtaxed with the amount of chicken waste. He showed us how to move the cage, how to feed and water them! All the kids were so attentive and interested in what he was doing!
He also walked us through the processing procedure of the meat chickens and the equipment used and how it was done. It was neat to hear his response to a not so enjoyable job of killing the chickens. He said they tried to be as respectful as possible and thanked God for the blessing of food and provision in these chickens. I wouldn’t think this would be a part of the job that is relished, but certainly necessary. I also found it neat that they did all of the processing there on site… from live to frozen and ready for sale.
After the meat chickens we went and gathered eggs! They have movable fencing and shelters to keep the grass growing and healthy for the chickens. Farmer Jessie was so brave to let over 10 kids under the age of 5 “help” with gathering eggs. There were only 2 casualties and of course my son was one of the culprits!
Which… I was so surprised that Tonchi went into the chicken field and wanted to help… without me! 😉 He is petrified of cats and dogs, but wanted to gather eggs and also heard the turkeys. He wasn’t fearful at all and was so excited to help! I guess maybe I have a little farmer in the making!
Next were the turkeys. Farmer Jessie had a new area fenced off for them and needed them moved, so we were able to help with that too! At first the turkeys didn’t really want to move to the new area, so the kids and mamas got to help encourage them to move in the right direction! The kids did a great job and really got into it!
Farmer Jessie also showed us how to clean the eggs and get them ready or sale. To see such a row of hard and cheerful workers was great! What child wouldn’t want to play with water! And do they often get the privilege of handling eggs? Probably not! 😉
Also, somewhere in the morning we also saw his pigs! They are currently in the barn, but Farmer Jessie is working on getting them used to foraging without wandering off! He said twice this year he had two pigs get away and weren’t able to find them until the SPCA called stating them had them! 😉 Naturally he doesn’t want that to happen again, but is trying to figure out how to encourage them not to wander off so far!
It was a GREAT morning and concluded with lunch outside before heading home! It was such a special treat! I LOVED it and so did the kids! They took GREAT naps that afternoon too! No wonder!
I know this post is a little different than most, but I thought it would be interesting and maybe different for some of my readers! I feel like it was a great experience for my kids and me. Knowing where our food comes from and how it is raised is important a makes it taste even better! 😉 I know my kids are more likely to try new food if they saw where it came from or helped with the cultivation or preparation of it!
Good quality healthy food is VERY important to our family and a farm like this we want to support! Not only do we like the work they are doing, but we like the good food we get out of it as well! So visiting and purchasing from farms like this benefits the farmer and my family!
As my bumper sticker proudly proclaims… “No Farms, No Food”