Sunday, December 30, 2012

Beef For Sale

We finally got a steer butchered and now have beef for sale

As always, our animals are chemical, hormone and antibiotic free and are butchered in an inspected facility.

Lean ground beef               $3.50/lb                     Round Roasts or Steaks        $5.50/lb
Sirloin Steaks or Roasts     $5.50/lb                     T-Bone Steaks                      $6.50/lb
Rib Steaks                         $5.50/lb                     Short Ribs                             $3.50/lb
Roasts Cross Rib. Sirloin and Round       $5.50/lb
Soup Bones                      $2.00/lb

Also available - Beef Family Pack  $100.00

Includes the following with approximate weights
12 lb Lean Ground Beef
4 T-Bone or Rib Steaks
1 3-4lb Roast
3lb Round Steak

Monday, December 10, 2012

Regina Farmers' Market

We just found out that we've been approved as vendors at the Regina Farmers' Market.  We will be selling our farm raised pork and lamb.  Although we have not been approved for our other products yet, I am hoping that as spots open, we will have a larger product line.  Very excited about our next step in marketing our product.  See you all in the new year when the market opens after Christmas!

Sunday, December 9, 2012

Farm Raised Lamb for Sale

We have started butchering lambs and have the following meat for sale

Loin Chops                        $7.50/lb
Lamb Leg Roast                $7.50/lb
Shoulder Roast                  $6.00/lb
Shoulder Chops                 $6.00/lb
Breakfast Sausage             $6.00/lb

All lambs are processed in a licensed facility and were born this year.

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Farm Raised Pork for Sale

Farm raised pork for sale.  No antibiotics or chemicals used on our outdoor healthy pigs.  All meat is pricessed in an inspected facility.

Pork chops      $4.50/lb                Ground Pork          $3.00/lb           Shoulder roasts or chops $3.00
Ham                 $5.50/lb                Leg roast               $4.50/lb           Pork Ribs                       $4.50/lb
Bacon              $4.00/lb                Side pork               $3.00/lb

Family pack  $50.00   includes 5lb pork loin chops, 2 lb shoulder chops, 4 lb ham or leag roast, 1 lb bacon, 1 lb ground pork.

Monday, December 3, 2012

Well. winter has settled in on us.  Already we have had more snow that we did all last winter.  We have been so busy this fall that not all the winter prep jobs got done.  I'm trying to get caught up, but I think winter will come and go before I do.

All the round straw bales are still out in the field so I have to drive out with the tractor and pick one up when I need it.  Fortunately, it wasn't too cold today - our John Deere tractor has no cab.

The cows and sheep are running together this winter, sharing a pen with a large 3-sided shed.  It gets bedded with straw whenever they need it for sleeping on.  That is, of course, if they don't eat it all.  The animals will leave their hay bale and come and eat the oat straw.  For some reason they think it's a treat.

Sunday, November 4, 2012

My goats are the smartest animals on the farm.  Their powers of reasoning amaze me sometimes.  It only takes doing something different once, and they're on to you.  This doeling has figured out how to get the best hay at feeding time.  As the goats are eating the bale of hay in the feeder, the small alfalfa leaves (which are the best) fall down out of the bale.  They lay on the bottom in a layer of the choicest feed.

Wait for it.......Wait for it.....

Dive in!  She crawls right in under the bale, lays there and eats undisturbed 

Meanwhile, the rest of the herd eats from the top.

Friday, November 2, 2012

My New Babies

I've been wanting a team of horses for awhile.  I love horses and at one time, I rode a lot. When we were doing custom cattle ( calving other peoples cows) I was out everyday on horseback checking cows. But after a riding accident my balance isn't very good and I don't feel comfortable on top of a horse.  So now, I want to have a team of two heavy horses.  They would be useful to me; working in the garden, raking hay, feeding round bales, cleaning out the barn, and best of all, going in parades. 

Lyle hauls horses and when a herd of horses was being shipped, these two little babies were too small to be shipped.  The owner was going to put them down because they will not survive the winter without special care.  I just couldn't let that happen, so Lyle brought them home for me.  They were born this summer and have been running out on grass with their mothers  until last week.  The black filly had injured her leg, so I don't know if she'll ever be able to pull.  The blonde colt looks good, I will probably need to find a team mate for him.  They are finally eating and drinking and seem to be settling in,  Yesterday they finally came up to me so I could scratch their backs.  They have been very scared but I've got them in with Ben ( Hannah's new 2 year old who was also rescued from the meat truck) and he is so quiet that he keeps them calm.

This little filly looks really rough, but she's coming along.  I wasn't sure she was going to make it, but everyday sees her a little stronger.

This little stud colt is very sweet. He's much stronger and has settled in good.

Ben is Hannah's horse.  He's 2 and she will start training him this winter.  He is very quiet and level headed.  She shouldn't have much trouble starting him. When he came a month ago  he was so thin, but he's starting to put some weight on and looks so much better.

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Another Fall Run

Well, another fall run is underway at the Whitewood Livestock Auction.  Once again we are putting in long hours sorting cattle.  This is my 11th fall run here (also worked 3 years at Calgary Stockyards), and I am sure feeling my age.  We worked Sunday afternoon, Monday til 2 am and loaded out trucks until Tuesday at 11 pm.  As usual, Wednesday morning I could barely crawl out of bed, and we start all over again on Sunday for next weeks sale. I'm not sure why I do this job, getting kicked and run over by wild cattle! Add to that working when it's as cold as -30 some days. There are so many other jobs that pay so much better and you don't end up sore and bruised.  A couple of years ago I attached one of those pedometers and figured out I walked 17 miles in one day.  Some days I need to shake my head.  But at least we have fun doing it and I like the crew we work with.  Hannah is now also working at the barn.  She's on the penning side, and brings her horses to work.  She just loves having a job where she can take her horses with her.

As you can see, she also has a little fun too!

Sorting calves with the crew on a cold, foggy,  rainy October morning.

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Ornamental Corn

This year I decided to grow ornamental corn.  The growing period is about 20 days longer than our area of Saskatchewan so I started it early in the greenhouse.  I babied these little plants along, transplanting, covering for late frosts, and watering.  I picked the corn yesterday and I am really glad I made the effort.  They are just beautiful and I love the colours.

I also ended up with the ugliest cob of corn I have ever seen.  Not sure what happened with this one!

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Vegetables Available

For those of you who are local, we have the following vegetables available for sale.

Red Potatoes  $1.25/lb
Green Beams $3.00/lb
Purple Beans $3.00/lb
Beets - cylinder or round - bunch of 6 with tops $3.00 or w/o tops $5.00/gallon
Carrots $2.00/lb
Swiss Chard $2.00/lb
Sugar Peas $2.00/1/2 lb
Snow peas $2.00/ 1/4 lb
Cucumbers - mini $.50 each
Cucumbers - slicers $1.00 each
Cucumbers - picklers $10.00/gallon
Tomatoes - cherry $2.00/lb
Field tomatoes - $5.00/gallon
Vegetable marrow - $1.00
Zucchini squash - $1.00 each
Spaghetti squash $3.00
Hot Peppers - jalapeno, chili, Hungarian 3/$1.00
Corn - bi colour - $0.50/cob

Fresh Herbs $1.00 per bunch
dill, thyme. sage. basil - sweet or purple, cilantro. rosemary, oregano, parsley, savory, mint

Dried Herbs $1.00/10 grams
thyme, sage, basil, rosemary, oregano, parsley, summer savory

dill weed - $1.00/5 grams, chamomile - $3.00/10 grams

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Newest Member to the Farm Family

I picked up this new little doeling the other day in Gimli, Manitoba.  She's an angora goat and was born this spring.  I've been wanting an angora for a long time now but they are very hard to come by.  She's already been clipped this year, and I was given the bag of her mohair when she came.  It is so soft and luxurious.  By next spring her coat should be a mass of long ringlets. Look for mohair mittens and slippers for sale this fall!  Anyone got any suggestions for her name?

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

This year I did it!  I got my red currants picked BEFORE the birds found them.  Needless to say, I had an excellent crop.  My two bushes produced enough to make many batches of red currant jelly. I now have available for sale: Red Currant Jelly  $5.00/250 ml jar.  Email me to order.  Thanks

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

The environmentally friendly way to cut grass. Mows, weeds and fertilizes in one pass.

Monday, July 2, 2012

Monday, June 25, 2012

It's Going to be a Quiet Summer...

Rebecca left Saturday morning for Halifax.  She'll be on the Shearwater base doing her Navy basic training for 9 weeks. She was so excited to go, but I haven't heard from her in 2 days so I don't know how she's doing.  We are very proud of her!

This morning Zachary starting working full-time for the summer at the P&H elevator in Langbank.

Hannah will be busy cutting grass and working with her horses all summer.  I think she has a few shows planned and is taking some horses to a kids camp for 2 weeks.

It's going to be very quiet here... and I like it!

Except... the garden.  I have no one to help me weed, except for Lyle.  It is finally dry enough in the garden that we can get out there and start killing weeds.  We used the tractor yesterday to rototill between the wide rows, and Lyle is using the walk behind for the narrower rows.  The weeds are thick so we have to make a big effort to get things under control.  Believe it or not, there are seedlings under that solid mat of weeds.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

It was announced that this spring was the 3rd wettest spring ever.  I thought last spring was bad but this year is worse.  We did get our oats seeded though, which was an improvement from last year.  We have had rain everyday for the last three weeks.  It's very depressing to get up every morning and see rain clouds.  Portions of my garden are under water.  I guess I'll have to write off everything that was seeded on the east side.

I've been busy mudding in tomatoes.  It's slow going and it's too wet to even weed.  On the bright side, the peas are loving this cool wet weather.  They are thriving and I expect flowers soon! 

It was a sunny morning when I went out, hardly any clouds in the sky.  Not sure what that large yellow orb is up in the sky.  It did cloud over later in the day and we got more rain and hail!  Who said market gardening was easy.

Monday, June 18, 2012

Vegetable Box Program

Do you know where your food comes from?  Do you know what chemicals and pesticides were applied when it was being produced?  Why not sign up for our vegetable box program and receive locally grown, chemical free produce delivered right to your door on a regular basis. You will also be able to add  free range eggs and farm raised meat (beef, pork and lamb) to your order.

Cost will be $10.00 per week for 1-2 people and $20.00 per week for the family pack.  Eggs are $2.50 per dozen.  Meat will be based on availability.

Contact me for more information and a registration form.
Mom and I got home last week from our trip to Israel and Finland.  We spent 10 days in Israel and then went over to Finland to visit family for 10 days.  It was great to meet many of Mom's cousins.  We had a wonderful time getting to see the countryside, visiting and hearing stories from the past.  I'm hoping many of the family will come to Canada for a visit so that we may return the hospitality.

I was very anxious to return home though, as it's difficult to be away from the farm and gardens in the spring.  My garden and greenhouse were overgrown, I'm going to have to spend a serious amount of time out there getting everything under control ( think lots of weeds!).  All the spring babies came before I left in May except for the cattle.  The few cows that we have calved while I was gone.  Even the milk cow - #19 - calved with a nice heifer calf.

The old girl is turning a little gray on the face but otherwise she's in good shape.  Can't wait for strawberries and cream, fresh milk, butter and ice cream.  This year I am going to try making cheese.  I have been milking cows since 1990 but never attempted cheese - so this is the year! 

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Mom and I are now in sunny Israel.  This is the view of the Mediterranean Sea from our hotel room in Haifa.  We've been here for 2 days now and I think I've recovered from jet lag.  The last two days have been very tiring, but today we are venturing out on our own so I should have lots of pictures for the next post.

Saturday, May 19, 2012

I've been working many hours and now, finally, have the garden seeded.  Lyle will put the potatoes in this week while I'm gone.  All that will be left are the transplants, and I'll do them in June when I get home. 

Last year I had Reggie out helping me in the garden.  He was a real nuisance but he was fun to have around.

This year I have these squealing little porkers.  They sure make a mess when they get in the greenhouse.

Our first calf of the season was born this morning.  We had the cows bred to a Galloway bull last year.  This calf is a little different looking then we are used to.  He's only an hour old in this picture so he's still a little wet.

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Why is it, when there are hundreds of puddles after all the rain, that you must swim in the goat water troughs?

Monday, April 30, 2012

Bottle Babies

Four times a day I fill four bottles with goats milk and trek over to the quonset.  I have some bottle babies over there.  There are two baby pigs, now three weeks old.  They were too small to stay with mom so I took them away to try and keep them alive.  So far so good, they are eating well and growing.  Not very cuddly though, they hate to be picked up, and will scream if you try to.  However, if you have a bottle in your hand, they are your best friend.  Also, I have two lambs on bottles as well.  One was a small triplet and the other was abandoned by it's yearling mother.  After fighting with her for a week I gave up.  Hopefully next year she'll be a better mom, or she's down the road!

Friday, April 20, 2012

Lambing is just about done with 4 ewes left to go.  It was a good lambing with few problems and almost everyone twinned up,  Thought I would post 2 videos of the sheep.  We lock them up every night in their pen but in the morning I let them out for exercise and some nibbling on the new little sprigs of spring grass. 

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Captured at Last

From the beginning of time, my goats have roamed the yard like a bunch of hooligans.  They refused to go out and scrounge their own food in the pasture, but instead preferred to intimidate all the other barnyard animals and eat their food.  It has been a constant game of trying to lock them up and hold them for a few minutes so that everyone could eat in peace.  They have gotten into the chicken coop and eaten the grain,  they have scaled the 4 foot pig fence and eaten the pigs grain.  They have jumped on the cows hay and peed on it.  They attack you when you walk across the yard with a pail in your hands. 

At last, their yard pen is done.  They are locked up tight.  Haven't gotten out in days.  It's been a peaceful yard.  Everyone else is happy, including me.  The goats will stay here until I take them out to pasture.

Sunday, April 15, 2012

I've been working on the goat pen whenever I have a spare few minutes over the last few months.  Yesterday Lyle and Zac donated their afternoon and we got it done.  And thanks to Brittany who brought us home nails from the co-op when we ran out! I was told once " if it will hold water, it will hold a goat".  I know these girls can scale a 4-5 foot fence - they are extremely acrobatic.  So, this was our fix to the problem.. 2x6 horizontally then 8 ft windboards all around the pen.  I want to see the Houdinis get out of this!

We got an old wooden granary for them to use as a house.  I can also milk in there which means I don't have to haul them over to the milking house.  It needs a new roof, insulation and paint but I think they'll be happy with it next winter.

The pigs are checking out the new digs.

Last day of freedom.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Babies Everywhere...

Last night we had a sow farrow.  She had 13 babies but I have 2 runts in the house right now under a heat lamp drinking goats milk.  The other 11 are doing well, mommy is resting comfortably.

We have been lambing since April 1 and are just about done.  13 left to go, but I think they will take their time coming.  Most of the lambs have been from the suffolk ram, but now the cheviot lambs are coming.  Not used to seeing the white faces.  They sure are cute.  This set of ewe twins was born last night and by today they were raring to go!

Monday, April 9, 2012

Last week the chicks started hatching.  I could not get the temperature regulated.  Before I put the eggs in I had run the incubator for a few days and had the temperature steady.  But after putting the eggs in, the temperature went all wonky.  There were a few days when the temperature was 7 degrees too high and I was sure  I had cooked them.  Didn't have much hope for any to hatch because of the wide fluctuations.  Then on day 19 of 21 when checking the eggs I found the incubator stone cold.  Somehow it had gotten unplugged and must have been like that for most of the day.  With a heavy heart I plugged it in, and being the eternal optimist, hoped for the best.  Day 21 came and went with nothing.  On day 22 there was a faint peeping coming from the eggs, and over the next 4 days I was able to get 13 chicks.  It was a very poor hatch but was able to get a few out of it.  The incubator is now running properly with more eggs in it so hopefully next hatch will be better.

Very curious chick... wondering about my phone being in his hot box.  I'm keeping them in the basement for a bit, it's still too cold outside. 
  So, we'll try again. Would love to increase my hen flock by at least another 100 hens.  I'm sure my egg customers would appreciate that.  I am always sold out at the farmers market early in the morning.

Saturday, April 7, 2012

What a yucky day outside.  It's -4 out, snowing and 40 km/hr wind.  This is a pic of the garden today ( and I was contemplating putting in some early seeds). ha ha

I've been busy starting seeds in the green house.  Not much is up yet, some herbs, tomatoes and peppers so far.  Lyle had to put on the propane heat for me this morning.  The electric heaters can't keep up and we're expected to get -10 on Monday.

Monday, March 19, 2012

A Harbinger of Spring

Spring will soon be here.  It's been an easy winter, and spring is in like a lamb.  The geese are here, large flocks, and so are the crows and red-winged blackbirds.

Every year we have hummingbirds in the yard.  There is usually a family nesting in the spruce tree beside the house.  They arrive mid-May and I have their food waiting for them.  We always follow their progress on the internet.  Right now they're as far north as Tennessee and Oklahoma. Check this map out, it's pretty cool.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

I got my catalogue from my favorite hatchery not too long ago.  Last year my order was royally screwed up.  They got the hatch days wrong, then I ended up with 100 wrong chicks when they finally showed up.  I like black or red birds.  They said my normal black birds ( red rock cross) that I order wouldn't be available because the hatch got screwed up. So, they talked me into red sussex cross which should be red. 

This is what I ended up with - 100 white chickens  They said they were red sussex cross but the parents were switched in the hybrid process.  Whatever.  All I know is that I've got free-range birds that the coyotes will be able to see from the neighbors.  Red or black camouflage themselves where as white sticks out.  We ended up loosing about 20 birds last summer. 

So, taking into account all those problems from last year, and the rising price of chicks ( again), I decided to go back to hatching my own.  I'll try to hatch about 150 birds, half will be boys and will go into the freezer.   I've got 75 eggs in the incubator now and they should hatch April 2. Not all eggs are viable, so I will probably end up with 50 or so.

When we home schooled and were learning about chicks I used this website.

It has a wealth of information if you ever wanted to know about hatching chicks.

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Winter Gardening

Winter is the hardest part of the year for me.  I think I go into withdrawal when I'm not able to be out in my garden.  I love the garden in the early morning when the sun sparkles off the heavy dew.  I love to walk through the garden in the morning and check everything, to see who grew since the day before.  While doing my early morning walk I will decide what we're going to pick that day for market.  I am happy to putter in my greenhouse for hours on end with dirt under my fingernails.  I just can't wait for the snow to be gone, so like many other incurables, I start seeds early in the house.  I have a sun room on the the south side where the babies spend their days, then they come into the house at night.  We won't move to the greenhouse until it warms up at night.  It's not cost effective yet to run the heaters.  It's like Christmas morning when the boxes come from Stokes and Vesseys full of the promise of new growth.

Baby basil enjoying the hot March afternoon sun

Rosemary cuttings from some mother plants that I overwintered.